Celebrity Worship

You know something? I could almost give a damn that Kim Kardashian is having a kid, or had a kid, or is having a goat.
 
I could almost care that Miley Cyrus called off her wedding, or is pissed off at her dad.
I don't really care what Nick Nolte's house looks like or how much he's selling it for.
If Heidi Klum had a nipple slip at the beach, more power to the lucky bastard who had spread his blanket out on the sand next to her.
I don't want to know about Randy Travis's "brave last days".
And I certainly don't give a tinker's dam about what Reese Witherspoon (Who on God's green earth names their daughter 'Reese' anyway? Wasn't saddling her with the last name of 'Witherspoon' bad enough?) said when was  drunk. Hell, I've said worse things when I used to be sober!
Do people really care about the lives of people they don't even know? What is this all-consuming infatuation with celebrities? Do these people deserve so much of our attention?
And, these days, people make a career out of simply being famous! As many folks in the past have asked, "What, exactly, does Kim Kardashian fucking do, with the exception, of course, of shilling for credit cards aimed to rip off kids? I mean, except for appearing totally starkers in Playboy about a decade ago, I can't think of anything!

But it's all in fun, right? I mean celebrity worship, such as the "news stories" that fill the pages of People Magazine and fill the minutes between commercials of Access Hollywood  and Entertainment Tonight is harmless, right?
Maybe not always.
I already mentioned Kim Kardashian here. Let's talk about another person who made her money originally by being a naked lady- Jenny McCarthy. Jenny's big claim to fame was that she had low enough self esteem to allow herself to be objectified, and she posed naked for money in Playboy Magazine. Then, she married and divorced Jim Carey. And then she ended up on Oprah as an advocate for autism and to hawk her book that started a global uproar with the anti-vaccination movement.
In her book, she contends that there is a direct connection between the commonly used MMR vaccine and autism. (MMR is the most commonly used vaccine in the world for such diseases as measles, rubella, momps and the like.) Actually, The Grand Pooba of this theory, the fellow who originally started the whole thing, is an English doctor by the name of Andrew Wakefield. Good ol' idiot Andy published a study in the medical journal, The Lancet, in 1998 with thirteen of his pals. 
Through a long and winding mess of twisted facts, clever misrepresentations and flat-out lies, the good doctor's study drew a direct line between the MMR vaccine and the occurrence of autism in young children. 
In 2004, after Sunday Times reporter Brian Deer published an article that brought to light several "financial conflicts of interest" regarding Wakefield's study, eleven of the thirteen people who assisted Wakefield in the study recanted their findings and withdrew their support from Wakefield.
In 2010, The General Medical Council of Great Britain found Wakefield guilty on four counts of dishonesty and twelve counts involving the abuse of developmentally challenged children, and claimed that Wakefield acted "dishonestly and irresponsibly in his published research."
The Lancet then immediately and fully retracted his 1998 publication.
In another article published in The British Medical Journal, Deer called Wakefield's study "an elaborate fraud" in which The doctor planned to wildly profit from a worldwide vaccination scare by receiving government funding for more testing and research on the subject.
So, in other words, one jerk wrote a bogus study based on outright lies and then he developed an enormous, world-wide scam that every major medical association on the planet refutes vehemently.
BUT, nude model and Playboy's 1993 Playmate of the Year, Jenny McCarthy, who gained the bulk of her fortune and fame in pornographic photos exposing her breasts, vagina and ass, supports Wakefield's findings, and she is much more entertaining than all of those stodgy old physicians who only attributes are medical degrees, years of knowledge, and nothing to gain whatsoever monetarily from their stance on the issue.
So, who are you going to believe?
Of course!
Long live buxom and unabashed Jenny!
After all, she makes GREAT sound bites, and she sure is easy on the eyes! And, for gosh sakes, she certainly is the epitome of perkiness, isn't she now?
I mean really!
And now, thanks to Jenny and her leagues of "Mother Warriors" and Oprah Winfrey, the planet is seeing a huge resurrgence of almost every reportable disease, such as measles, whooping cough, rubella, mumps...
Way to go, girls! Wave your banners high and stand behind the teachings of your celebrity spokesperson, who, by the way, is making the fortune that Dr. Wakefield never did make on this whole scam. She is campaigning worldwide for the cause with such things as speaking engagements and five books published on the subject, at the expense of your children . . . and many adults.

Oh? Excuse me? You say that you detect a note of anger and sarcasm in my words? I sound upset?
MOI???
Well, maybe it's because my girlfriend was just diagnosed with, of all things, whooping cough!
Whooping cough, for God's sake! I mean, that went out back in the forties, didn't it? I mean, my father told me stories of when he had whooping cough as a kid, and the medical officials of the town came and posted a quarantine notice on the front door of his house, and nobody was allowed in or out of the place for two weeks!
But whooping cough is a dead disease now, right?
Not anymore.
Thanks to Jenny and Oprah and those celebrity-adoring "Mother Warriors".


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A Problem with Alcohol

Okay, listen. I didn’t do it on purpose. It was an accident. It wasn’t my fault.

Got that?

Okay then. Here’s my story.
I had just brought home Mary Ellen’s ashes for the first time. The “urn” is a beautiful, polished wood box with a picture of Mary Ellen and her horse Hoo laser etched onto one side of it. The laser picture is so well done that it appears to be three dimensional with subtle gray and black shading. Absolutely stunning.
Well, I brought the urn into our TV room and placed it on a footstool next to my chair. Then I said, “Okay, My Honey. Let’s have a drink to welcome you home.”
I went into the kitchen and mixed myself a Captain and Coke, and I mixed her favorite drink for her – ginger juice and vodka.
(Mary Ellen used to grind up ginger root and then simmer it on the stove for an hour or two. We didn’t know what to call the concoction, so we labeled it “ginger juice.” She thought the stuff tasted like ambrosia. I, on the other hand, not having a feminine palate, thought it tasted like pure, unadulterated shit. But she liked it, and that was all that counted.)
I brought the drinks into the TV room and placed Mary’s next to her on the stool. I sat down and began sipping on my run and Coke. As I was sitting there remembering good times with My Honey, Fritz The Dog came into the room, circled a couple of times on the braided rug and laid down at my feet with his trademark WHUMP!
Just for the record, Fritz is a five-year-old, 95-pound German Shepherd from German bloodlines. He is long and lanky, and, pretty much a goofy klutz most of the time.
I have another German Shepherd, Dixie. Dixie is a beautiful little girl, around 50-pounds and eleven years old. She is an absolute sweetheart who looks like she is smiling all the time.
I’ve been told that shepherds are happiest when they have a job or a duty to perform, and if you don’t give them one, they will come up with one on their own.
Fritzy’s self-appointed mission in life is to play. That’s it. You can throw a tennis ball or a stick for him twenty-four/seven, and he never tires of bringing the slimy, gritty thing back and dropping it in your lap for you to throw yet again. Even when it’s a hundred and eleven in the shade, he will play for hours and hours on end.
Now, for some strange reason or another, Dixie has decided that her life’s work is protecting me from those huge monsters on the other side of the pasture fence – my horses. Seriously!
If I’m in the house and look outside, I’ll see her roaming all over the yard, or lying in the shade or nonchalantly doing all those doggie things that dogs do. However, if I should step one foot out the back door, Dixie, no matter where she is, comes over and positions herself in a direct line between me and the horses. And, if one of them steps out line by, say, walking up to the fence, this little, toothless female goes postal, barking, squealing, growling and making sudden, threatening lunges towards the offending colossus.
So, anyway…
There I am, sitting in my chair in my living room enjoying my rum and Coke with my wife’s remains and thinking warm thoughts about our life together, when suddenly, there is this tremendous eruption outside. Dixie is going doggie-bananas!I look out the window, and, sure enough, there is a horse at the fence. Dixie saw the horse and saw me through the window, and, well, she felt called into action.
When the old girl gets into a barking frenzy, the only way to calm her down is to go out to her, pet her and speak gently to her, telling her that she’s a good girl.
If that doesn’t work, you beat the living shit out of her. (Only kidding.)
So, I put my drink down, hoisted myself off of my comfortable chair, and trekked outside to have a communion with a creature of another species.
After about ten minutes of petting her and reassuring her that I was okay, she calmed down.
I came back into the house, grabbed my drink off the table, settled back into my chair, and nursed my Captain and Coke lovingly. In no time at all, I was immersed in the soothing, wonderful memories of twenty-two years of life with Mary Ellen once again.
Eventually I finished my drink, and I decided that it tasted like another one. So I stood up, and looked down at Mary’s urn. “Be back in just a minute, Honey,” I said softly. But before I turned to go into the kitchen, my gaze fell upon her glass that was next to her urn
The freaking thing was empty, except for a couple of ice cubes at the bottom.
I picked the glass up, and sure enough, there wasn’t a drop of liquid left in the thing!
Nothing!
How could this be???

“FRITZ!!!!!!!!!”
No response.
“FFFFRRRRRIIIIITTTTTTZZZZZZZ!!!!!!”
This time, I heard a stirring coming from the living room. I poked my head into the room, and there was the big boy sleeping in the middle of the couch.
“Fritz! Get off the damned couch!” I shouted.
He opened one eye and moaned softly.
“Get the hell off the couch!” I screamed.
This time he stood up on the cushions and swayed a bit from side to side.
“GET DOWN!”
He jumped to the floor. Unfortunately, he forgot to put his front paws out in front of him, and he crashed to the carpet, chin-first. His head bounced sharply. Then he laid there with his eyes closed for a minute. When he finally opened his eyes again and looked up at me under those brown eyebrows of his, he gave me the most mournful of looks and and sighed deeply.

Fritz was plastered.

I mean plastered!
Now, usually, both dogs come upstairs to the bedroom with me at night. Fritz usually bounds up the steps and leaps onto the bed, and I usually coax Dixie up the steps and lift her onto the bed also. Then I give them both a Wether’s Butterscotch and keep them upstairs with me all night. (This is to prevent landmines on the living room carpet to be discovered in the wee hours of the morning.)
“Come on, Fritz! Let’s go upstairs! Wanna go to bed? Bed, Fritz?”
He opened his eyes, groaned lowly, and slowly worked his way up to his feet. He took two steps before his front paws crossed, and he crashed back down to the carpet again with a soft whine. Then, all the coaxing in the world couldn’t get him to budge.
I felt bad for him. He wasn’t just drunk; he was completely hammered!
So I lifted the 95-pound critter up in my 59-year-old arms, and carried the big boy up to the bedroom with Dixie following in our wake.
Fritz didn’t want the butterscotch. He zonked out on the bed, and he didn’t even move his head when I laid the hard candy down just an inch away from his nose.
I crawled under the covers and quickly fell sound asleep, only to be awakened at 2 am by a horrendous noise that almost shook the room.
As my groggy head cleared, I became aware of the source of all the racket; Fritz was snoring! Loudly and deeply! He sounded like a chainsaw. And I couldn’t get him to stop, no matter what I did!
In the morning, the poor boy was sick. Instead of bounding down the stairs as is his tradition, he stood up gingerly, and, with his head and tail both low, he slowly made his way down the stairs. When he came to the empty glass that was still on the stool next to Mary’s urn, he looked at it, sniffed it for a moment, and then glared up at me. At that point, I swear to God I heard him say, “What the FUCK was in there???!!”

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A Very Significant Death – Part 3

There were so many people at Mary Ellen’s wake that the funeral home director had to take the unprecedented action of asking those who were sitting in the viewing room to please leave and go to the church so that the rest of the mourners could get in to pay their respects. The room was filled to overflowing twice.
The procession of cars from the funeral home to the church was a long and winding one. When I looked back from the lead car, the parade trailed back as far the eye could see.
In the church, there was standing room only. The parking lot was so full that people were parking on the lawn and in entrance and exit lanes.
Was this the burial services for some head of state or some other internationally known dignitary? A movie star? Perhaps Some UN ambassador?
No. She was just a school teacher. And a wife. And a mother. And a grandmother. And a friend. Nothing special in any conventional way, but Mary Ellen was never conventional in her life, and she was, indeed something rare and amazing.
When Mary Ellen came into my life, I was a pretty miserable excuse for a human being. I had a temper, a mean one. I had few to no friends. AND I was estranged from my two kids; neither one of them had spoken to me for years for a number of reasons, not all of which had to do with me.
With her loving patience, understanding and endless compassion, she turned me around. When I spoke at her funeral the other day, I said, “If you love me today, it is because of Mary Ellen.”
She taught me that relationships were the most important things in the world, and that love triumphs over everything else on the planet.
She showed me God. A God that I could accept. A God who was nothing but pure love. (She refused to believe in Hell.) It was quite a departure from the Catholic Deity of my youth who seemed so stern and ready to punish me at a moment’s notice for natural things like “impure thoughts”. (I LOVE impure thoughts!) This new God loved me and the world no matter what. He, (God was always masculine in Mary’s mind.), accepted just as I was.
And this God shown through Mary and reached out to touch all who came in contact with her.
Mary Ellen changed everybody who knew her, and she did it not by force or by giving unwanted advice. She did it by example. People saw how happy and energetic and loving and forgiving she was, and they wanted to emulate her.
Mary also changed people whom she had never met. She would often walk into a coffee shop, pay for her drink and then give the clerk another two dollars and say, “This is for the coffee of the next person who comes in.” She would do the same thing at highway toll booths.
In all the years that I knew her, I never once heard her gossip about anybody. Not once. She would say that disliked somebody, but that was as far as it went, and she would say the same thing to the person’s face.
She was always willing to give somebody a second, third, and thousandth change. She never gave up on a human being. And, even if she disliked or distrusted a person, she would always find the good in him or her and expound upon that.
She loved me through and through, and I loved her just as much. Does that mean that we never fought? Hell no! We fought, but we fought fairly. No name-calling or deceit.
Anger? Uh-huh!
Hatred? No!
And never once in the twenty-two years that I spent with her did we go to bed without telling each other that we loved each other.
Mary didn’t care if you were a homeless person or multi-millionaire, Democrat or Republican, man or woman, physically beautiful or just plain butt-ugly. She gave everybody a fair shot and loved most people that she met.
She always entered into a new relationship with exuberance and an open mind. She always started off liking a new acquaintance right off the bat, and they had to really prove that they were despicable over and over again before she would change her mind.
The glass was ALWAYS half full.
No matter who or what you were, she always made you feel important and interesting and loved.
And that’s why her wake shattered the attendance records at the funeral home. And that’s why they were standing in the aisles at her memorial service. And that’s why the minister had to put a limit on the number of people who talked at her service.
And that’s why I loved her, and why I will continue to love her until the day that I die.

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A Very Significant Death – Part 2

The first week after Mary’s death was a whirlwind of emotions: despair, loneliness, love, profound sorrow and disbelief. One morning I woke up, and with my eyes still closed, I reached over in bed and found somebody lying next to me. For a split second, I was filled with overwhelming joy, and I thought, Oh my God! It was all just a bad dream!! Then I looked over, and it was the dog.

I would walk into a room, and was surprised not to find her there.

I would do something that I was proud of and would catch myself thinking, I can’t wait to tell Mary Ellen!

I would sit for hours in a chair, feeling nothing and wanting to do nothing.

Everything and everyone reminded me of her.

I would be going along just fine one moment, and the next moment I would dissolve into convulsing sobs.

My grief was bottomless.

I was surrounded by friends and family, and all of them combined could not fill the black, cold void that I felt at my core.

The great love of my life had been taken from me.

I remember talking out loud to myself saying, “She’s gone. She’s not coming back.”

No matter what I did, I could not escape the hideous, ever-present sorrow and bone-numbing loneliness.

For the first time in my life, I could understand why a person would commit suicide. I remember thinking as I was driving down the highway to a relative’s house; it would be so easy to escape this pain! Just close your eyes, hit gas, and smash into that light pole! My family was afraid to leave me alone, and for good reason.

Although I never seriously considered suicide as an option, it became clearer to me the kind of despair and grief that can lead to such thoughts.

Then, I believe that I had my first visitation from her. (Yes. I believe in spirits. And I believe that some spirits who loved deeply in life remain for a while to make sure their loved ones are okay.)

The day after Mary Ellen died, I was numb. Everything was surreal. I went through the motions of living, but I don’t remember much of the day.

At five o’clock in the evening, I hadn’t eaten or drunk anything all day. I didn’t feel hungry or thirsty, and, to be honest, I had simply forgotten to feed my body. When late afternoon rolled around, however, I wanted a drink. So I had two rum and Cokes. I was sitting in a chair in the living room and my friend Norm was sitting on the couch. I stood up to go into the kitchen for something or another, and suddenly I incredibly dizzy, and my vision fizzled and failed.

All at once, I was in pitch dark room. I could hear voices but could not distinguish what they were saying. I heard music, but could not identify the instrument or the tune. I felt suddenly relaxed and one hundred percent comfortable, and then I became aware of hands massaging and caressing both of my arms. And I physically felt those hands just as surely as I am feeling this keyboard right now with my fingertips.

I wanted to stay there in that state. It was peaceful. It was pleasant. It was like being gently enveloped in a soft, thick comforter.

But I came out of it, and I was lying on the floor looking up at Norm who had caught me as I fell backwards. It seemed like I had been gone for a couple of hours, but Norm told me I was out for only a second or two. I asked him if he had touched my arms when I fell, and he said no. He had supported me by my back.

Now, you can think what you want to think. I know I blacked out from a combination of no food, dehydration and stress. But the hands, the peace, the comfort. I’ve no doubt that THAT was Mary still here and still loving and take care of me.

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A Very Significant Death

I fear that much of what I am about to say will sound cliché. My response to that is, can’t help it; it’s how I feel.

My wife Mary Ellen passed away last week.

She went into the hospital almost three weeks ago for a total knee replacement. The operation went off perfectly – no complications whatsoever.

She came home three days later, and I took the next week off of work to wait on her. The day that she came home, she was walking around with a walker, and she even climbed the stairs that night to sleep in our bed. Two days later, she exchanged the walker for a cane. A day after that, she shed the cane and was walking unassisted. The home health nurse and the physical therapist who visited the house both were amazed at how quickly she was progressing. She did all of the exercises that were prescribed to her faithfully. She and I were both excited by her progress and by the thoughts of our future together. We talked about taking long walks every evening once again, as we did twenty years ago.

She couldn’t wait to go back in six weeks and have her other knee replaced.

Then, a week ago, she got out of bed in the morning and felt nauseous. She laid back down until it subsided. Then she stood up again and the nausea returned. She also complained about shortness of breath. So I called the surgeon who had operated on her. He said that it was probably nothing too serious, but, just to be on the safe side, I should get her to an emergency room and have her checked out.

So I got her up and moving. She got nauseous and dizzy after a few moments, and then she sat down at the top of the stairway and passed out for a few seconds.

I called 911, and the ambulance came and took her to the hospital, and I followed in my car.

When we got to the hospital, I grabbed her hand as they wheeled her into the place and whispered in her ear, “I love you, My Honey.”

With her eyes closed and her face ashen, she whispered back, “I love you too, My Honey.”

Those were the last words that we ever spoke to each other, and that was the last time I ever saw her alive.

She died from a pulmonary embolism about an hour later. Her heart stopped, and the doctor revived her three times. The fourth time was unsuccessful.

My beautiful, amazing wife, the absolute love of my life, my soul-mate, was suddenly gone forever.

I was all alone in the emergency room waiting room when the two nurses and the social worker came in. I had called all the kids, and they were en route, except for Kyle in San Diego. The nurses told me that my wife was in very serious condition and the doctors were doing all that they could. They were sweet and compassionate, and when they left, the social worker remained just to hold my hand and attempt to comfort me.

The next thing that happened was like a scene from a movie. I was sitting with my head down, worrying and praying that My Honey would be all right. I heard a sound in the doorway, and I looked up to see three women in white coming into the waiting room. Two of them were the nurses that I had seen before. The third one was the doctor. One of the nurses closed the door behind them as they entered, and I took that as a terrible sign.

“It’s not good, is it?” I asked weakly, getting to my feet.

The doctor shook her head, took my hand and said, “We did everything we could. We couldn’t revive her the last time her heart stopped.”

I stared at her for a moment, not comprehending what I had just heard. Then, when the reality hit me, I my knees buckled. They grabbed me and set me down in a chair and I just bawled with abandon for the next twenty minutes.

That is what happened. Those are the facts.

 

And now, enough of the physical. I would like to spend the rest of this post writing about the REAL essence of a person’s life, the part that cannot be measured by years or dollars or possessions. I want to talk about the love that a person leaves behind. And that will be Part Two of this series.

 

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Cars Keys and The Sea

First of all, it was her fault.

As we climbed out of our sailboat and into the dinghy after a completely delightful afternoon of sailing, she handed me my baseball cap and said, “I put the car keys in the hat.”

Not that I’m looking to blame anybody for it…but it was her fault.

 

Okay, let me back up a little.

 

It was a beautiful day for sailing on Narragansett Bay. The wind was out of the south at ten to fifteen knots, the seas were around one foot, the sun was shining, and the temp was in the eighties. And, the BEST part was. . . Mary Ellen and I were sailing just for the sake of sailing! We had no place to go. Just to there and back again…kinda like Bilbo Baggins without Orcs.

 

We got back to our mooring in Bullock’s Cove around three o’clock, climbed into the dinghy and headed for the dock all happy and in love and warm and salty and tired and sunned-out.

It was at the dinghy dock that this gorgeous day turned decidedly sour.

 

Mary Ellen got out of the inflatable first. And I began handing her things as I emptied out the dinghy: the spare oars, the cooler, her tote bag, my baseball cap with the car keys inside of it……

 

The dinghy dock is situated in four feet of water…Bullock’s Cove water…water that you cannot see through…mucky, slimy, brown, brackish water.

 

As I handed her my cap, I saw her take it, and then, in slow motion (I swear!!!!!), I saw the cap open up, and I watched as the shiny keys to the Camry fell out.

“NNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOO-O-O-O-O!!!!!!” I remember shouting, as if in a slowed-down dream. My hand reached out for the keys as I watched them leave the cap, flit through the air like autumn leaves, slowly and playfully bounce off the wooden dock, and then gently slide into the sea.

They made a divot in the water’s skin, and then I watched helplessly as the brown water slid in place back over them, obscuring them from sight immediately.

 

SHIT!

 

I looked up at Mary Ellen, and intelligently fought off my first impulse, which was to look at her and scream, “LOOK AT WHAT YOU DID! NOW WE’RE SCREWED!!!”

But I judiciously didn’t say that. In a rare display of rationality and constraint, I told myself that I should have reminded her that the keys were in the cap. I should have made sure that she had the cap securely in hand before I released it. AND, if I ever wanted to have sex again, I’d better find something else to say instead.

So I stared down at the water and, in as calm of a voice as I could muster, whimpered, “Now what are we going to do?”

Mary also looked down at the water and matter-of-factly replied, “We’re going to have to get in the water and find them.”

The water looked like the murky, scummy liquid that pickled eggs are floating around in at those old fashioned general stores and in those gritty, blue-collar bars. You know what I’m talking about? Those two-gallon glass containers filled with greenish water with the eggs floating around in them. And when you stomp the floor, the eggs wiggle and undulate, and you wonder how and why anybody would ever eat those things.

“I’m not getting in that water,” I stated flatly.

“Okay. Then what are we going to do?”

“Maybe we can call Scott or Rich (two of our sons) and have them come and get us.” (They live over an hour away from where we were standing.)

“Okay. Where are our cell phones?”

My heart sank. They were in the glove compartment of the car. Along with our wallets, which contained all of our credit cards and cash.

I looked at Mary Ellen and asked, “Do the words, ‘we’re fucked’ mean anything to you?”

The only thing I could think of doing at that point was to sit down on the dock and have a good, productive cry. But, there were too many people around who might not know how to take that.

Without another word spoken, Mary Ellen slipped off her sandals and watch, and then slid over the edge of the dock and went up to her shoulders in the brackish glop that some folks in the area laughingly refer to as water.

“The bottom’s all mucky and filled with seaweed,” she reported with a shiver and look of disgust. Then, she slowly and methodically began feeling along the bottom with her toes. All at once, her eyes lit up. She bent down into the water, and she came up with . . . and handful of seaweed and mussels.

After about ten minutes of watching her pull up pound after pound of kelp and shellfish, I grew impatient, took off my sandals, watch, hearing aid, glasses (We old folks have a TON of artificial enhancements), and I gingerly slid over the side of the dock, my feet landing in a soft, squishy, cool and disgusting cushion of vegetation.

DOUBLE Fucking Gross!!!!!!!!

After a few moments of feeling around with my feet, mimicking Mary Ellen, I came to the conclusion that this was an exercise in futility. So I climbed back out and onto the dock. (As one of my heroes, W.C. Fields, once said, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. And then give up! No sense in making a damned fool out of yourself!”)

At that point, a man who had been working on his boat in the marina and observing the whole situation came down to the dock and asked, “Can I help you with something?”

My first macho instinct was to get indignant and blurt out, “No! Everything’s fine! Go away!”

But common sense got the better of me, and, knowing that Mary Ellen would want me to ask for help, I decided to make her happy, and I, exhibiting great chivalry, said, “She dropped our car keys into the water.”

The Good Samaritan let me use his cell phone, and I called the AAA Auto Club, hoping that they could send somebody out just to unlock my car so that I could get to our cell phones and call my son to make the hour and a half drive down to pick us up.

Well, to make a long story just a little bit longer, I no sooner got AAA on the phone when Mary Ellen screeched, “I’VE GOT THEM!!!!!!!” I looked down to the water, and, sure enough, there was my wife, neck deep in greenish-brown liquid, dangling the keys over her head and beaming from ear to ear!

I rushed to her and offered to help her up onto the dock, but she decided that she would rather swim to the boat ramp.

So I took the keys, and ran to the car. (I was not sure if they would work. I knew that they had computer chips in them, and I wasn’t sure what being dunked in salt water for twenty minutes would do to them.

They worked just fine!

I unlocked the door, jumped in the car and started it up. As Mary Ellen approached the vehicle, dripping wet and looking like a drowned rat, I rolled down the window and said, “You’re too wet. I don’t want you in the car..”

She didn’t see the humor in that.

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Faulty Liberal Democratic Thinking

You know what I think? I think that conservative Republicans are brilliant people, and it is because they are so brilliant that ignorant, dull, liberal-minded people such as myself simply could never HOPE to understand their logic nor their reasoning.

Why do I think such things?

Glad you asked.

You see, there’s this guy, Mitt Romney, who kind of looks like a mature Ken doll, and he is soon to be the Republican candidate in the upcoming Presidential election. I’m mean, you have to be pretty darned smart to achieve that goal, right? (The candidate thing; not the Ken doll thing.)

Not only that, but I have A LOT of very intelligent friends who are going to vote for him. And these people wouldn’t vote for somebody that they thought was stupid or even of just average intelligence.

So, this Mr. Romney guy has got to be pretty smart.

Right?

Okay.

So here’s where I show my ignorance and my liberal feeble-mindedness.

Ready?

Here goes:

If Romney’s so smart, how come I think he’s dumber than a box of rocks?

Look.

Two weeks ago, The Supreme Court of the United States of America ruled that The Affordable Health Care Act put forth by President Obama was constitutional.

Now, this piece of legislation is almost an exact duplicate of the health care act that Mr. Romney signed into law in 2006 when he was Governor of The Commonwealth Of Massachusetts. Back then, he touted the law as something that would be a huge benefit for the citizens of MA.

So how come two weeks ago, he stated that the national health care bill, that was based on his health care bill for Massachusetts, was “a bad idea yesterday, and it is a bad idea today.”

For the life of me, with my limited, liberal brain power, I cannot figure out how this can be! I mean, from what I can see, the two bills are almost freaking identical!!!! How could things have changed so drastically? Once, Mitt considered this legislation to be better than manna from Heaven. Now, it has morphed into the worst piece of legislation ever to come down the Massachusetts Turnpike. . . in just six short years?

Either Mitt’s wrong, or I’m wrong. And Mitt is running for President and has a whole bunch of people who are going to vote him, and I’m just a no-name schmuck who is sitting here writing this blog post all by my lonesome.

 

By the way, the Republican-dominated House of Representatives is going to vote again today to repeal ObamaCare without any proposal to replace it with.

Do you know how many times they’ve voted to repeal this thing? Today’s vote will bring the grand total to thirty-three.

Thirty-three freaking times!!!!!!

I may be a liberal, but even I understand what they’re driving at; they don’t like the freaking bill! Okay! It doesn’t take thirty-three times to get that point across! (Especially when you’re on the clock!)

AND, they know that, after they vote to repeal it yet again, it will get shot down in the Senate. AAAANNNDDD, if, by some miracle, it does pass the Senate, Obama will veto it. So, these Republicans KNOW that they are wasting their time!

Thirty-three times!!!

Sheesh!

I know that I’m missing something here. I mean, the actions of that many elected officials cannot be as stupid as I think they are.

So it has to be me, right?

I worry about myself sometimes.

AND, John Boehner defended the seemingly redundant action yesterday, (“redundant” to we dim-bulb liberals), by saying that he doesn’t want to be part of the dismantling of “the best healthcare delivery system that the world has ever seen.”

Which healthcare system do you think he’s talking about?

OURS?

Again, I’ll show my ignorance.

If we have the best healthcare system on the planet, how come people travel from the United States to Canada to get their prescriptions filled? How come people who need operations and extended healthcare go to places like The Dominican Republic instead of staying here in the good old U.S. Of A.??? How come forty-six million of us have no healthcare insurance??????????

Perhaps Mr. Boehner isn’t talking about the healthcare system that we, the average citizens, have to endure. Perhaps he’s talking about the healthcare benefits that he and all the rest of the 8.5 million federal employees have.

These guys get to choose from over 300 plans, the most popular of which is the Blue Cross/Blue Shield Family Plan where the government pays $1,120.47 and the individual government employee pays $356.59 per month. Or, if they prefer an HMO, there’s the Kaiser Standard Family Plan, where the government pays $629.46 and the individual government employee pays $157.36 a month.

Also, each member of Congress, but not their families, can get free medical care at The Office of the Attending Physician, which is located right there in the Congressional Office Building. They can also get free out-patient care at Walter Reed Hospital.

THAT must be “the best healthcare delivery system that the world has ever seen” that Mr. Boehner is talking about.

Right?

You know something? I’d take that plan for those prices in a second!!!! But, it’s not offered to the masses because it would be too cost prohibitive.

Know what I think? I think that Congress should get the same health benefits that the rest of us get.

Not for nothing, but do you know how much money we, the taxpayers, shelled out for federal employee healthcare last year?

Over fifteen billion dollars.

That’s “billion”, with a B.

That’s “15” with NINE zeroes after it.

And yet, the few billion that ObamaCare will cost to cover ALL Americans is way too much money to spend, according to the Republicans.

See how I get so confused???

 

 

Okay, enough about healthcare.

Now, President Obama wants to extend the tax cuts that were enacted by President George W. Bush for American families making less than $250,000 annually. Obama’s logic on this is that middle class families can use all the help that they can get right about now in order to keep themselves solvent and to keep the wolf away from the door.

Once again, in my dimwitted view of the world, I actually think that this is a good thought.

However, Mitt Romney says that limiting the tax cuts to families making less $250,000 is not a good idea. He says that the tax cuts should also go to the wealthy, because they are the ones whom he calls “the job creators”, and they would use their savings from the the tax cuts to create new jobs!

The man is nothing short of BRILLIANT!!!!

I never thought of that!!!!

Did you?

And here’s something else that I never thought of until just this minute:

If the wealthy are the job creators in this country, and cutting their taxes will encourage them to create new jobs for Americans . . .

then how come it hasn’t worked so far?

I mean, George W. enacted these tax cuts for ALL Americans, the wealthy included, back in 2001 (The Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001) and then again in 2006 (The Jobs and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2006).

So, “The Job Creators” have had over ELEVEN FREAKING YEARS of tax cuts, and the unemployment rate in The United States as of last Friday was 8.2%!!!!

To my way of thinking, cutting taxes for the rich didn’t work!

The way that I see it, the wealthy have avenues to tax shelters and tax deferments that are not available to the average American, and much of their income is gained in non-taxable ways. And, while the average American took these tax cuts and used them to put food on the table or to attempt to pay the mortgage on their homes, the wealthy took that money for the past the last eleven years and squirreled it away in tax sheltered fund or off-shore bank accounts in the Caymans.

Either that, or they spent it on necessities. But seriously, how many Lear Jets, Swiss Chalets and mega-yachts can one person own?

One thing is certain, they didn’t spend it on creating new jobs.

I know my logic here is faulty. I just know it is!

But what do you want from me?

I’m just a …liberal. (*sigh!*)

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