She’d Rather Wait

I’m still not feeling well and am not in the mood to write, so today is Throwback Thursday. The following dialogue took place between Alma (a 92-year-old woman I used to take care of) and myself. Alma passed away early last year at the age of 94.

May 30, 2015 at 11:08am

Alma – The weather’s been awful this year, hasn’t it?

Vicki – No.

A – You don’t think all this rain’s been awful?

V – No, awful is a destructive tornado, or being flooded out of your house. The weather we’ve been having here is terribly annoying, but I wouldn’t call it awful. That, to me, is like daring God to show us how much worse it can be.

A – What do you mean?

V – I mean, maybe it’s better to thank God for how good we’ve got it than to complain about how terrible it is.

A – I’m gonna wait for it to dry up a little.

New Phone

I don’t feel like writing today. I’ve been down in the dumps and not feeling well, so I thought I’d make today Wayback Wednesday with this old Facebook post from May 31, 2015 … the day I bought a new home phone (landline) which I recently made reference to in another blog post.

May 31, 2015 at 12:23am

New phone instructions, as printed on a 10-page fold-out, almost the size of a road map: (This is just one of many parts of the instructions, but I think people who need this information probably don’t need a phone.)

To make a call:

1. Lift the handset and wait for a dial tone.

2. Use the dialing keys to enter the number you want to dial.

3. Place the handset on the telephone base to hang up.

To answer a call:

1. Lift the handset while the phone is ringing.

2. Place the handset on the telephone base to hang up.

Note: The instructions didn’t mention this, but if the telephone is a new form of technology to you, it is customary to greet the caller after you’ve completed step #2. This can be done with the traditional “Hello?”, or if you have up-to-date technology and have been made aware of who is calling, you may greet them personally, in a more customized manner.

Brain Dump

Okay little Thoughts, stay here and play for a while. Have fun and don’t hurt each other. You’ve all been cooped up in my brain far too long. Brainy needs a good airing!

 

 

Prideful Politics

I am not politically minded. I have a hard time understanding a system created to confuse via legalese, contradictions, doubletalk and illogical interpretations. My brain understands right vs. wrong, fair vs. unfair, nice vs. mean, inclusion vs. exclusion, etc. Even these things have their gray areas, but not like bureaucratic politics.

One thing I have noticed, however, is that frequently Party-A will tolerate words or actions from a Party-A politician that they won’t tolerate from a Party-B politician, and vice versa.

When it pertains to sexual misconduct, for instance, party-A members who condemned a party-B politician for being inappropriate/immoral in the past will overlook and/or defend similar actions with a party-A politician. This is not limited to sexual misconduct, however. These exceptions are made in many different areas.

Whenever one finds oneself saying, “But Mr.Twenty-Years-Ago did (or said) the same thing and the other party didn’t have a problem then, so what’s the big deal now?”, then it’s time to take stock of your own ethics/morals. I know people who darn-near condemned past politicians who weren’t members of their party for the same things they now turn a blind eye to.

We need to stop treating party politics with as much (or more) respect as religion/spirituality. We need to stop treating politicians as if they were members of our favorite bouncy-ball teams.

Politics is not a game! Politicians are not infallible, regardless of the party badge they wear!

We have to understand that politicians (including presidents) from all parties are just as human and no better than you or I. They are not gods! They should not be viewed as “better than” anyone else.

“We, the People” should stand together, but instead we side with a team (party) and revel in criticizing and condemning the other guys. That’s the game that has been created for us in order to keep us battling against each other so we won’t see the big picture. As long as they can convince us that we should oppose the other guy because he/she is rich, poor, black, white, gay, straight, Democrat, Republican, Muslim, Christian, atheist, male, female, etc., then we are always going to be fighting for the wrong things.

Every time I see liberals or conservatives being criticized or condemned by their opposers, my first thought is “This is nothing but a friggin’ game!”

The world of politics should not be about “scoring one for the team” and mocking the opposing team. Instead we should be examining the character of the politician, not defending him/her simply because he/she won our vote.

There is no room for pride when people’s health, lives, livelihoods, life’s savings and God-given rights are at stake. (If you don’t believe in God, then view them as birth-given or natural rights.) It is true that our rights should be viewed as birthrights, granted to all human beings, without exception to nationality, religion, sex, sexuality, etc. These rights have always been the basis of Law. Whether you believe in a higher power or Karma, the Law should pertain to all. (Note: We must also remember that true Law protects the rights of mankind and is based on right vs. wrong. Codes, acts, regulations, statutes and ordinances don’t always reflect this.)

Unethical behavior remains unethical regardless to which party the politician belongs. Likewise, class (or lack thereof), politeness, ethics, competency, etc., should not be judged by the party to which the politician belongs.

Don’t be so friggin’ in love with your party of choice that you become blind to the things that truly matter.

The character of a man matters far more than the party to which he belongs. Those who can’t raise themselves above the party are doomed to accept whatever position(s) the party takes, whether they’re right or wrong.

We must remember that we (human beings) are natural, whereas political parties are artificial – created and run by politicians. Then we must ask ourselves which is more important – standing for the rights of God’s/Nature’s creation or standing for the whims/demands of man’s creations.

Animal Lovers on Social Media

I just want to start this rant with the admission that I’m crazy about cats and can’t resist petting a friendly dog! I’m more of a cat lady than a dog lady, but I love animals of all sorts! The childhood nickname my parents bestowed upon me was Elly May, the teen or twenty-something animal-lover on The Beverly Hillbillies. I have spent a lifetime falling in love with one animal after another.

I have noticed, however, a particular online phenomenon among lovers of dogs and cats. I first observed the phenomenon early in my Facebook days, back in 2010 or 2011.

I’m sure the phenomenon isn’t restricted to dog and cat fanciers. It probably also carries over to fanciers of snakes, rats, birds, turtles, etc., but it’s very prevalent among those with a preference to felines and/or canines.

The phenomenon can be described as follows…

Somebody posts a photo of their dog. The dog is a St. Bernard with orange, black and white markings.

One third of the comments will be complimentary – people who think the dog is cute.

Another third will find fault in something related to the photo or video. Some people might have a problem with the toy the dog is playing with. Others may find fault in a brand of dog food if the bag or can is in the photo. Some find fault with the leash, the expression on the dog’s face (“he must be sad – he’s probably being abused!”) or some other form of abuse or neglect that they imagine because they consider themselves animal advocates and assume every animal on Facebook is being mistreated.

The final third will all say the dog in the photo looks just like their Fido, Snookie or Rex. Many of these people, after gushing over the dog’s resemblance to their own beloved canine pal, will post a photo of their dog so the world can compare the resemblance. The look-alike might be a St. Bernard, but he’s far more likely to be a boxer, beagle or chihuahua. The “perfect resemblance” might be in the markings, the color(s) or the shape of the left front paw.

Likewise, somebody can post a photo of Christian the Lion and a hundred people with house cats will say, “That looks just like my Fluffy!” The resemblance might be an orange coat, the shape of the ears, the number of whiskers both cats possess or the fact that they both have a proud posture.

When you read, “He/she looks just like my…”, it’s unlikely that anyone else in the world will be able to detect an identical resemblance.

What’s even funnier is when someone shares the “comparison photo” of their furry friend and says of the posted photo, “That looks just like my Ginger … If Ginger were black, and about five times smaller, and a dog – but if she were a black dog and five times smaller, they’d be twins!

I have known people who will see a photo of Lassie and two weeks later, a photo of Benji, and they’ll respond to both with, “He looks just like my Fifi!” … who happens to be a pink Poodle.

It’s okay to admire all of the online animal photos that get posted, but if you find an “exact resemblance” between your poodle and Lassie (a collie) or your gray tabby and the Cowardly Lion, I’m a little worried about you.

Perhaps you really do think your Beagle looks just like a Great Dane, but I sure hope your Beagle never goes missing. People might wonder about you if you lose Snoopy and return with Marmaduke, never realizing your dog is still missing and you’ve stolen somebody else’s dog.

For the totally clueless, I do offer this piece of advice: If Snoopy used to eat a cup or two of food every day and now requires a cow’s carcass to maintain his weight, you might have the wrong dog.

The Unlikely Origins of Two Words

The word son consist of three letters and one syllable. The word daughter is nearly three times as long, consisting of two syllables.

Both words have Old English roots and were adopted from other languages, but it’s not the origins of the words that trouble me – it’s how terribly different the two words are.

(Note: The following story has no basis in fact.)

I’m sure son came first. It seems to be the practice of mankind to cater to the males first and then, as an afterthought, toss the remaining crumbs to the females.

Based on this historical view of the sexes, I think the two words may have become a part of the spoken language in the following manner.

The Origin of “Son”

Ooga and Booga are a woman and man with four boys. Ooga has just prepared a meal for her family.

Ooga – Booga, call Fee, Fi, Fo and Fum. I make food to eat.

Booga – We need word for little mans so we can call all four at same time.

Ooga – But we call them “boys”.

Booga – I tired of all other cavemans boys coming when I call for boys. We need word for our boys.

Ooga – We shall call them our sons – like the giant ball of fire in the sky that gives life.

Booga – I like! I like very much! One syllable! Easy to pronounce! Yes, we shall call them sons.

The Origin of “Daughter”

A thousand years later, Olga has prepared a meal for her family and asks her husband to call their girls in for dinner.

Olga – Bolga, go call the girls in for supper.

Bolga – Every time I call for the girls twenty other girls show up. I can’t afford to feed the entire village! We need a word, just for the girls who belong to us. We call our male children sons. We need a word for our female children.

Olga – I don’t have time for this right now! The food is getting cold. I’ll tell you what you should do – go look out at the meadow. The first thing you see is what we will call our girls.

Bolga stepped outside of their modest little hut and looked at the meadow where he saw a lion greedily eating his prey. The lion’s dinner was a species of animal that was growing rarer by the day and was in great danger of becoming extinct.

The animal was well loved as a companion animal for its sweet, gentle and trusting demeanor, but nature had not provided it with proper defenses to fight off predators and it was therefore just twenty years away from dying out.

Bolga returned to his hut.

Olga – What did you see?

Bolga – I saw a lion eating a wild prairie daughter. From this day forward, we shall call our female children daughters.

Olga – They’re not puppies! I don’t know if I like that word.

Bolga – It’s perfect! The prairie daughters are almost gone. They’re dying out. In another 20 years nobody will have ever even seen one.

Olga – My concern has more to do with our girls taking on the characteristics of the prairie daughters. What if they grow meek, mild and irresistible, falling prey to men?

Bolga – That would never happen! We’re humans, not animals! We’re a lot smarter than they are.

Olga – Oh my gosh, Bolga! Your hand is bleeding! What happened to you?

Bolga – Oh, it’s nothing. I just lost a couple of fingers this morning. I found an alligator and stuck my hand in his mouth to see what he would do.

Olga – Smarter than the animals, indeed!

The End

Actual origins:

Old English dohtor, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch dochter and German Tochter

Son as a word originated before 900 BCE; from Middle English sone, Old English sunu; cognate with Dutch zoon, German Sohn, Old Norse sunr, sonr, Gothic sunus, Lithuanian sūnùs

Donut’s School Days

I generally peek outside before exiting my house to ensure that the hillbilly neighbors aren’t outside so that I can sneak out in peace.

Extroverts who read this might not understand this habit of mine, but surely even extroverts can understand the need to dodge annoying people.

Recently I peeked out of three different windows to make sure I wouldn’t have to interact with the hillbillies when I went outside. Once I was finally satisfied they were either inside or elsewhere, I walked out and there was Donut! She was at the end of the driveway looking for someone or something, shielding the sun out of her eyes.

When she heard my door she turned around and greeted me. As usual, I feigned fidgety politeness. The politeness I feigned because one shouldn’t be unnecessarily rude. The fidgeting wasn’t exactly feigned, but it was slightly exaggerated in order to convey that I had other things to do.

We chatted a few minutes and she finally brought the conversation to an end by saying, “Well, I need to go in and do my homework”.

That’s all it took to pique my interest and spark the following conversation.

V – Homework?

D – Yeah, you didn’t know I was goin’ to school?

V – No, I had no idea! What are you studying?

D – I’m takin’ a computer class that teaches ya how to open Windows – that’s computer lingo – and I’m takin’ a business class.

V – Interesting! I didn’t realize you were interested in business.

D – I’m not. I hate that class! I wanted to take photography ’cause that’s where my heart is, but there wasn’t enough money left over from the grant after I paid off all my hot checks. I had to take a couple of cheap classes.

V – Oh, I see. So you’re going to school because you applied for a grant to pay off hot checks?

D – Yeah, but I had to take somethin’ ’cause if I kept the grant money without goin’ to school, they might put me in jail or somethin’. I was gettin’ ready to be arrested for the hot checks, so I had to do somethin’, and since the grant people give ya more money than ya need, I used most of it to pay off my checks.

V – Well, good luck!

D – If I go back next semester I’m gonna take photography. I like takin’ pictures! I take really good pictures. Every time we take family pictures I’m always the one holdin’ the camera ’cause everybody likes the way I take pictures.

So that’s the story. Donut is taking a couple of cheap classes at our local junior college to avoid going to jail over hot checks. I’m not sure if that makes her a scholar or a con, but she’s out of hot water for now.