Monday, June 3, 2013


Don't mean to be facetious at all here. but in areas of the country that are known to regularly experience hurricanes, tornadoes, floods and earthquakes, what makes anybody want to live there? It's not like these death-dealing events are once-in-a-while occurrences, towns in Texas and Oklahoma have annual tornado seasons. In New Jersey there are towns that wind up under water every single time there is a bad rain storm. We see these poor folks on the news after the latest disaster saying things like: "We were lucky the good Lord spared us; we aim to build again." Why? Maybe the next time the good Lord will blow you away with the roof.

Mention the Second Amendment in any bar and soon voices will be raised in defense of our right to bear arms. "The only way you'll get my gun is to pry it out of my cold, dead hand." Fine, calm down bubba. I used to own a ,22 rifle that I used for target shooting. I'm not anti-gun. Although it may not be my cup of tea, I know this country has many hunters and gun collectors to whom gun ownership is a sacred right. No problem at all there...but I'm still waiting for a sane answer to the question of why any civilian needs to own military-style assault rifles with high-capacity magazines. No sportsman worth the name would use such weapons to hunt, but deranged child killers will. Enough.

Through my daughter, I have become acquainted with some of her friends who have special needs children, mainly cranio-facial problems like my granddaughter. These families have such a hard road, often facing medical emergencies, frequent surgeries and time away from home as they travel to wherever the best doctors practice in the hopes of finding answers to the problems their children deal with. I thought I used to know the meaning of words like strength, courage and love, but these parents and their kids  redefine these terms every day. I so greatly admire them, the doctors that help them, and the support groups that help raise both funds and public awareness about these disorders.

We have Verizon's FIOS service for telephone, cable and Internet. It costs several hundred dollars a month, so you'd think if anything went wrong, Verizon would send someone to fix it. Wrong Kemo Sabe, they make the customer their repair man. We recently upgraded our service and had to replace one of the four set-top boxes in the house. I don't mind making the few simple connections to hook up the box, but then the system is telling me I lost all the programs we had recorded on our DVR. After an hour of cursing, and trying all the solutions their "helpful" phone rep suggested, I was finally told to keep the old master box and send in one of the other satellite boxes. I'm sending them a bill for all my work.

Every time we turn on the GPS system in our car, a fight breaks out between my wife and I. I have a pretty good sense of direction, so when I resort to using the GPS, it usually means I'm lost and therefore, already a little stressed. It seems my wife and I comprehend the commands given by the GPS lady differently. These systems are good, but not perfect. When the lady is telling me to do something that intuitively feels wrong to me, I sometimes ignore her. At this point, my wife will say something like: "She said to turn left." I usually jump on her (unfairly of course) and before long we are raising our voices. When she finally dumps me, the divorce decree won't say "Irreconcilable Differences", it will say "GPS Incompatibility."


Children's Craniofacial Association

1 comment:

seashmore said...

As someone who has spent the last 28 years in Wisconsin, Iowa, and Nebraska, where flooding and tornadoes are annual events (although not always as destructive as the ones in the news), I think I can provide perspective on the first question. There's a sense of community here, and it's founded in helping our neighbors. Especially in times of inclement weather. Whether it be floods or snowstorms, as soon as people can, they're out there with chainsaws and sandbags helping folks clear up debris and preventing future damage.
Here's a link to a story about the I-680 bridge between Iowa and Nebraska that expands my point.

Here's the only article I could find that begins to explain why the bridge had to be rebuilt so quickly.