Precocious Great Grandchildren

A few years ago, I dreamed of becoming a famous writer of children’s stories. I even went so far as to enroll in a writing school for children’s writers. My wife Barbara and I enjoyed the benefits of having seven grandchildren, all between ages 3 months to ten years. To teach, entertain, and enjoy, I began writing stories about a cartoon character I invented while attending college. His name is Morty Angel.

Morty is a Guardian Angel whose assignment is to look after all my grandchildren. A side benefit for me was a chance to practice my cartooning skills by drawing pictures to help tell the stories. A couple of years after Barbara died and I took up with Peggy, my children’s story writing died too. Her grandchildren were 21, 22, and 23 years old. They were well past the age of my target audience, and my focus shifted to political cartooning.

This week, it occurred to me that I now have two precocious great-granddaughters born to Peggy’s youngest grandchild. I have never written them a personalized story yet. I decided it is time. They are now in grammar school and are already reading quite well. They would probably scorn upon being offered a cutesy child’s story, and I will have to step up my game and begin thinking about writing for the modern twenty-first-century pre-teens they are. At first, I thought I could get the stories written in time for Christmas. With all I have on my plate at the moment, that is unrealistic; priorities, priorities, priorities. It takes me an hour or two to draft a simple post like this one, and a story with a plot and characters might take a bit longer. I have just added the task to my bucket list of things to do before I escape Earth to Heaven.

Morty Angel Consults With ‘Lil T”

A Wordy Post About Stuff

One problem with writing a post everyday is finding themes. In that regard I admire Daniel Greenfield who writes for his blog called Sultan of Knish. He posts several times a week and each time it is an academic essay on some aspect of politics or world affairs. His posts are between 1200 and 3200 words each time. On the other hand, when I am in good form I will post about three times a week and average about 600 words. Lately, my posts are about four times a month, and I am having difficulty thinking of stuff to write about.

I wouldn’t be surprised if someone labels me racist again, because when Obama was president he did so many things I disagreed with that I couldn’t stop writing negatively about him. When Trump was president, I didn’t want to fan the fires of those who were against him because the press didn’t need any help from me. Biden on the other hand hasn’t done anything I like, and I believe he is destroying the country. Biden is making Obama look like an amateur when it comes to stupid policies and stupid governance. I don’t want to waste my time repeating what the daily news is already doing. Besides sleepy Joe is an old timer like me, and I won’t pick on someone who can’t help himself because his brain has stopped functioning. There is nothing sadder in life than watching a person who was a fireball while younger, and who has lost it to Alzheimer’s. I saw what happened with my wife, and it is truly saddening that so many people end their time on earth by slowly losing their memory to the point where they forget how to breath.

One memory invoked by Sleepy Joe is the era of Jimmy Carter when inflation kept rising and the Federal Reserve couldn’t do anything but raise interest rates to 16%. It was a great time for people with cash who could buy Certificates of Deposit earning a 16% return for a five year period. They advanced the size of their savings dramatically. The high interest rate eventually worked, and the economy adjusted so the rates began to drop, and about the time the 16% CD’s matured the rates were back to a paltry 3%. So for anyone looking at how long this pain will last history says it will be at least five years after the current rates rise to 16%.

For the past twelve years we have enjoyed an economy that was operating on free money. Loans were down to the low 3.0% range and that allowed many people to buy the house of their dreams. Those who had cash in the bank were sadly only making 0.1 % on their savings. Most people invested in stocks to make decent money. My retirement has been happy because of the earnings I have received, but I’m not so sure I will be happy moving forward as the economy begins to falter. My advisor continues to admonish me to look at the long run, and not the short term. Excuse me, but just how much longer do I have? Ten minutes, ten days, ten months, ten years? I worry that my paltry portfolio will not be strong enough to keep me going for the duration.

Last week I went into a McAllister’s deli for a sandwich($20 for a cup of soup and a six inch sandwich), and I swear the lady who took my order was older than me. I had a vision of me behind the counter making sandwiches, and that is not appealing. I’d rather spend my time standing in the middle of busy intersection dodging traffic with a bucket in my shaky hand collecting money for my Lions club.

In the good old days everyone was a farmer who worked until he died. It was only after the industrial revolution, and the Great Depression that people began looking at work as a forty-five year duration. Pensions, vacation, and medical insurance all became perks for workers. These benefits were being offered by companies desperate for help. With Trump’s economy we saw a huge shortage of help, but I didn’t see anyone offering huge new benefits to lure workers to their factories. About the most extreme benefit I saw was the work from home model which came because of Covid. Let’s hope things get better sooner than later.


Monday Morning Coming Down

Yesterday, I had an exchange of wits with an Artificial Intelligence bot. The internet connection of my computer was lost, and I didn’t have a clue as to how to fix it. I didn’t even have a phone number to call. Usually, I go to a company’s website for information or a friendly phone number. With the Internet out, I couldn’t get help. All day long, I pondered how I would live without the connection. The funny thing was, I still got TV and streaming services. In desperation, I looked through my ancient card files, hoping to find a number. I did. I called and got an AI bot. The bot was useless because it was programmed to answer only precise questions, like, “Do you wish to add services?” I began shouting into the phone with my question, using different words each time. I hoped it would recognize a word and connect me to a real, live human being. After many tries, the Bot asked if I would like to speak to an agent, “YES,” I replied. After a few moments on hold, I listened to several phone clicks and finally a voice. The agent was the same damned bot as before. I answered more stupid canned questions, and finally, the bot asked, “Do you want to speak to an agent?” This time, a real live person came on, and we made some progress.

After checking the status of my area for outages, she checked the lines in the house. Everything was in order. “Try resetting your modem, and I will call back in ten minutes.” I did as asked and she actually called me back. “Any change?” She asked.

“No,” was my answer. “Try turning off your device (computer) for thirty seconds and then turn it back on.” I did what was asked. The computer came back online, but the internet was not working. As I reached for the computer, to rip it out of the wall, the internet began responding. “Thank you Lord.”

I was so glad to have the thing working again that I forgot how angry the experience made me. Then, I began thinking about how to make this problem-solving more productive. First of all, I am an actual live human, and I started the whole fiasco by speaking to a numb-nuts non-human bot. I realized we don’t speak the same language. What I need is a bot to talk to the bot for me. I’ll spend the whole day looking for a bot that knows and understands AI and can intervene on my behalf anytime a provider insists on making me communicate that way. I will give the AI bots one thing: they speak English, but, more importantly, they speak without an accent, and they speak slowly enough to be understood.

It is time for me to go to the AI bot store to find my new assistant.

Fairy Tale Terror

The big story yesterday was from New York State. It seems a car with two people slammed through a border barrier at one hundred miles per hour in a hurry to get to a concert in Canada. Thankfully, they slammed into another barrier, and the car exploded. It is unknown whether it exploded like a bomb or ignited like a gas tank fireball. What bothers me about this story is that officials can tell us that the couple was headed for a concert in Canada but can’t tell why they suddenly decided to be in such a hurry.

I want to believe the couple was involved in a freak accident, with the car being the problem. I also want to think that the couple supported Hamas and showed it with the spectacular launch of a modern computer-controlled car of high reliability. The terror attack is the most probable explanation but the least supported.

It was Thanksgiving morning, and the streets of New York City were lined with thousands of people watching the annual Macy’s parade ushering Santa Claus into town. Why not pull off a terror stunt to panic people into doing stupid things? I can believe that the Government would want to suppress anything terror-related in an attempt to keep the citizens from panicking. Although this incident happened hundreds of miles from the city, it was close enough to warrant concern. At the same time, a group of Hamas sympathizers glued themselves to the street to disrupt the parade and to garner attention. If I were in charge, I would have left them all glued to the street until the glue wore off. This might have made them wonder if the New York City cops would have directed traffic around them as they did with the parade. It is my opinion that leaving the glued protesters sitting there watching taxis and busses bearing down in the hopes they would avoid driving over them might have convinced them to change their minds about sympathizing with a hate group. It is too bad the NYC Police chose to do their job to protect them.

Meanwhile, In the Mideast, Israel is doing a fabulous job of swatting the annoying flies that have been proclaiming death to Israel and all Jews. If Israel is smart, they will only stop long enough to get some hostages out alive but short enough to keep Hamas from regrouping underground into a different set of tunnels. I believe Israel is finally pissed off enough to make some history and will eradicate Hamas and any of their supporters worldwide. Remember when ISIS was the scourge of the Earth? They were moving across the territory rapidly spreading their shit for brains’ ideas about how we must live. It wasn’t until Trump declared that the USA would not stop eliminating ISIS until they were eradicated. All of a sudden, we stopped hearing from ISIS. Israel must do the same with Hamas, Hezbollah, and all Jew-hating groups.

Israel must successfully execute their goal to stop Hamas, and after that, they must brainwash all Palestinians into believing they love Jews and want to live peacefully together. Then, they must keep doing it for generations to make a lasting peace. At the same time, the USA must STOP giving the Palestinians money. They are poor money managers. They see money only as a vehicle to eradicate Israel. They must learn to fend for themselves and not allow themselves to be enslaved by the Muslims.

It would probably be an easier job to eradicate all Palestinians than it would be to make them believe something new. And now, I am sounding like Hitler.

Another idea is to convert all Palestinians to become Jews. Good luck with that.

Being Thankful

One would think that with the wars going on in the world and the bitter fighting between political parties, we have nothing to be thankful for. The opposite is true. If we woke up this morning, and all of our friends and relatives woke up, we have them to be thankful for. If we had a meal on the table, and a place to sleep we are grateful. The sunshine is also a gift, as is the lack of sleet and snow. We are thankful if we have gas in our cars and places to go. Most of all, I am grateful I can write this ode and wish my internet friends happy Thanksgiving Holiday.

These two tom turkeys are looking for attention from the hens of the flock.

Turkey joke: Female turkey to her partner,

“Is that your meat thermometer, or are you glad to see me?”