Stupid Is As Stupid Does-#220923

America the land of the free is led by the most idiotic people on the face of the planet. I am an American, first generation Hungarian. My parents came to America in the early nineteen twenties, they paid for their transport, found places to live, and jobs. They followed the rules and became citizens by learning the language, the civic process, fulfilled the residency rule to live here for five years, they met, married, and had four kids, I am number three. My older brothers learned English in grade school. I am a supporter of immigrants and immigration.

Ellis Island Medical Inspection

About six years ago, I met and became friends with a lady from a former USSR bloc country who came to America via a slightly unrecognized procedure. Over a thirty year span she applied for a visa at the US embassy multiple times to visit her aging aunt in New Jersey, and was denied each time. No reason was given. Demoralized, she answered an ad in a local newspaper in her home town which guaranteed entry into the United States. Her follow-up got her an airplane ticket and entry into America. For the past twenty years she has been looking over her shoulder and living in fear that an immigration officer will find her.

A couple of years ago I agreed to sponsor her to gain legal status. She hired a lawyer and has spent over ten thousand dollars and filed numerous immigration forms through her attorney. At this time her application is two years old and she has not yet received her “Green Card.” Those with a Green Card have status within the country to apply for an identification card, a social security number, and it opens many doors of opportunity to an immigrant. It also allows the immigrant to travel between America and their home country, and be allowed to return. Imagine my exasperation when I read a news article about the US giving current illegal immigrants an automatic green card. I lost it. I should have advised this lady to fly to Mexico and to then walk across the border to gain an automatic green card without a lawyer, and without spending an exorbitant amount of money.

California Border Crossers

I have decided to write a letter to my Congressman and Senators to enact legislation to wipe out every law on the books. If we are not going to follow the laws why should we even have them, to protect the politically elite? Let’s just stop kidding ourselves and do the job right. Stop the nonsense and fire all the police, judges, courts, law makers, and anything even remotely connected to laws. The people of this country can take care of themselves. But beware, many of us would most likely decide that politicians are also no longer necessary. At the rate we are going it will only be a matter of years before we re-enter the Neanderthal age of lawlessness where the only thing a man had to worry about was giving his family food, shelter, and protection from predators.

The people of the United States and Europe have all lost the meaning of life. We are fighting Mother Nature. Every species of mammal, reptiles, aquatic, insect, what-ever, exists to survive. That means they procreate. What we have chosen to do is to selfishly deny procreation to the point of needing to import people from other places to survive.

Liberals are so worried about the planet, global warming, and extinction that they have decided to stop it with hair-brained schemes to save us. At the current rate of population growth the white race will be extinct in three hundred years, at the current rate of global warming the earth has about three hundred years before we even have to consider it a problem, in about three hundred years we will use up all fossil fuels and the air will only contain man-made radioactivity, and not all that nasty stuff we get from fossil fuels. The ultimate hypocrisy of the left is using the argument that they want to save the planet for our kids and grandchildren yet they support abortion, and not having kids. As Forest Gump so famously said “Stupid is as stupid does.”

Letters

Can you remember when people wrote letters and notes to each other? Last night I dreamed that I had finished a wood working project that was a special letter writing desk. My intent would place it in my sleeping room in a secretive corner. Why in a secretive place? So I could express myself without distractions from Lovely, phones, and messy desk stuff. This of course is all fantasy, because it would only be a couple of days before my pristine letter writing desk will also become littered with messy desk stuff, Lovely would find my hideout, and the smartphone would locate me.

One of my to do projects is to burn a stack of letters that I wrote to my first wife while we were courting. Amazingly, she saved them all, and I like a doofus have saved them as though they were something sacred and holy. The problem I have with disposing them is that they are sacred and holy and represent a life that I wish still existed. The words on those pages were from my heart written in ink with a fountain pen (before the infamous BIC changed the writing world). They expressed emotions and feelings that I couldn’t verbalize for too many reasons which have stunted my public speaking ability for years.

I noted with great pleasure that early English noblemen and women used letter writing to communicate to friends. This became obvious to me during my viewing of Downton Abbey a serialized story about a English nobleman and his family who reside in a massive fifty room house on a property exceeding most National Parks. It was common for the family members to write notes and letters which they sent to friends by way of a servant, thus getting feedback on their return. This was the eighteenth century version of texting and email. Alas, I said e-mail, a technology of the past which has been out dated by texting. I read somewhere that three percent of e-mails are read. However, eighty percent of texts are read within three minutes of their arrival. When I served as president of the Frankfort Lions Club I had lousy response to emails. When I heard of the response time for a text, I signed up for a texting service and started a new trend within the club. I digress.

In this dream I sit at my letter writing desk daily for a set time, and write letters to my grand children imparting my wisdom, and regaling them with tales about their parents growing up. The instrument in my hand is a Mont Blanc fountain pen, although in the interest of time I will defer to a ball point which I find writes much smoother. The troublesome problem I have with the fountain pen is that it dries up, and I am forced to disassemble it to clear it’s plumbing before it is usable. Even so, the modern pen is much more efficient than the eighteenth century quill. It just occurred to me that the quill didn’t require blowing out, all it took to get started writing was to dip the point into the ink.

A huge problem that I have discovered is that modern children are not always able to read script. The age of printers and word processors have moved the teaching world away from penmanship and into the world of type. My grandson, a graduate engineer often drops me a note which I have trouble deciphering. It seems he is printing so fast that the letters often become illegible. In my day we had trouble reading one another’s hand writing and today we have trouble reading one’s printing. So we solve the problem by using the very legible keyboard with digital output usually in the form of a digital format like text messaging, e-mail, and very rarely the postal service.

What I see happening here is that my fountain pen is being relegated to a place in a museum having been replaced by the highly impersonal digital means of communication. Nevertheless, I still feel that a hand written note is special. It imparts the feeling that the sender is giving of himself by spending the time to manually write. He is sending you a sample of his personality and skill, but most importantly he is expressing himself to you.

Amaze your loved ones, write them notes in your best script.

Free, Free, Free, I Am Free!

There is a burgeoning fad sweeping across America, and possibly the world. I can’t call it new because this way of life was at one time just that, the way of life. I am speaking of native people who lived as nomads. Early inhabitants of North America were nomadic mainly because they chased a food supply. The new nomads are comprised of rather young people who consider working for a company a waste of their talent. They live to be free from constraints, rules, superiors, and labor on demand. Instead they mysteriously find income by working under their own rules. The number one rule is to work in a place you choose, at a time you choose, and at a pace that you choose. Second rule is to make money from several income streams. A popular income stream comes from Youtube or any of it’s competitors. The term for making money by this method is “monetization” of your content. The content is most often a video that you make. Another income stream comes from sponsors who send you money to keep your videos coming, and the Vlogger spends a few seconds giving a commercial for the sponsors product or service.. Neither of these streams yields enough to support a nomadic lifestyle. Most likely the nomad has a third stream consisting of contract work performing some service related to a field of expertise.

Regretlyss

I have struck upon several of these nomads producing videos of their solitary lifestyles. One is called “Regretlyss” which is a Vlog (Video Log) produced by a twenty-eight year old who lives in a school bus that she designed and had built for her. The term used to describe this type of motor home is a “Schoolie.” Her’s is a short wheel-base bus usually used for taking special needs kids to school. These vehicles are often named and have the name emblazoned upon the vehicle similar to that done on a boat. Nomads prefer diesel engine vehicles because they are more reliable and get better miles per gallon. One of the most popular vehicles being converted to nomadic living is a Mercedes Benz Sprinter van. Again, probably because Mercedes vehicles are consider very rugged, reliable, are available, and relatively inexpensive to buy used. The challenge is to do the conversion by yourself and make a video while doing it.

One reason I am fascinated by these people is their youthful enthusiasm as they go to places that peak my interest as well. Among the most popular regions of the country to live alone is in the western states among mountains. The photography is outstanding and they bring scenery into my living room from places that I also have traveled to and wake up neurons from travels past.

Very often, the video the Vlogger is narrating some limited wisdom of life, and their search to overcome some traumatic life lesson that occurred during childhood. In some cases they have been reared by single parent who dumped an abusive spouse. Or, they them self encountered an abusive relationship. I tend not to understand what is being proclaimed because the speaker uses flowery language that sounds poetic, but doesn’t make any sense. I never did understand poetry and to this day I shy away from the classics of Shakespeare, Yeats, Bronte, Burns, and Frost, but am amused by the “Mary had a little lamb” type of prose.

When I was very young my dream was to convert a van into a camper and I did a limited conversion on my very first van. The idea of moving across the country into remote regions to experience the hardships of the early settlers crossing the wilds of North America to find a place they could call home appealed to my sense of adventure. I believe we (my wife, and three kids) successfully accomplished that goal as we embraced camping as a vacation lifestyle. My wife often boasted to her girlfriends that she would rather see the world by camping than to dream about taking lavish unaffordable trips staying in hotels, and eating in restaurants. In later years, we switched to the hotel route when we took trips abroad.

A few years ago I read a book titled Nomadland, Surviving America In The Twenty-First Century, by Jessica Bruder in which she tells her story about a different class of nomads. Her story is not about twenty somethings looking for the meaning of life, but about people who have been forced to live in their cars, and move about the country from job to job in places where the climate is livable. The nomads I speak of in this post are college grads that choose not to accept the commercial world, and prefer to live a life style based on complete freedom using personal talents to make a living.

257 Years of Wisdom

Last Sunday I had the distinct pleasure of driving through some heavy rain for one hundred miles from Frankfort, Illinois to Covert Michigan. The low hanging dark grey clouds and the pouring rain combined with some heavy traffic slowed down the trip. Lovely and I were attending my family reunion. It doesn’t happen every year, but my older brother decided he may not be here next year to organize another, so he invited everyone to his place in Michigan for a good old fashioned Hungarian bacon fry. He is guaranteed a crowd if only his five kids come with their kids, and grandkids. It gets bigger if our sister and her three boys come with their clans, and even bigger if I come with my three kids and their families. We didn’t have perfect attendance, but there was enough of a mix from all three families to make it a great visit. The rain stopped about ten miles from our destination, but the grey sky lingered.

The bacon fry is a family tradition founded by my parents when we were still little. Although it is not recommended by the American Heart Association, we do. It begins with a square of bacon preferably taken from a hog’s jowl. The bacon is skewered onto a long stick and held over a very hot wood fire. Naturally, the grease begins to drip from the bacon into the flames. Sitting on the ground next to the fryer-person is a plate of freshly sliced old world rye bread covered with diced onions and tomatoes. When the bacon is running, the fryer swings the rod off the fire and holds it over the bread to capture the drippings. The fryer, this year was not my brother, but his Irish son-in-law Kevin. Brother Bill told him that since he’s been in the family for twenty-five years he was now qualified to spin the bacon.

When the plate full of bread is soaked in hot bacon grease, a fresh one is placed before the fryer while one of the girls walks the finished plate around offering scrumptious greasy bread to the guests. It takes a while to make enough of the recipe to satisfy everyone’s palate. For those who consider the greasy bread just an appetizer there is also grilled, bratwurst, hot dogs, and a cooker full of Szekely Goulash (Shepard’s Stew slow cooked with cubed pork in sauerkraut, garlic, Bell peppers, and onions), along with number of salads. For me the afternoon turned into a non-stop eating fest.

We spent the time dodging occasional droplets of rain and catching up on the families. Most of my brother’s family came the day before and set up tents to sleep in. The children played lawn games while the adults mostly gabbed away.

The drive home was a pleasure since the rain had stopped, and since the following day was Labor Day, the Sunday night traffic was extremely light. By the time we pulled into our drive there was no evidence of rain at all, and the sun was beginning to burst through the clouds in rays of light just in time for sunset.

Time Flies

It seems like just a few minutes ago I woke up. Yet here it is almost noon, and I am just getting to my desk to write something. Time is important to me, and at this age I relish every moment the Lord grants me. It is my opinion that when time “flies” everything is going well, and my happiness index is high. It is when time slows to a “crawl’ that I believe something is seriously wrong.

An example of what I mean when I say time is at a “crawl” is when I am in severe pain as when I had a kidney stone traversing my plumbing last year. It seemed like eternity to get to where it was headed, and I thank God it was a small stone which kept moving. Had it stopped along the way time would have stopped for me, and my happiness index would have dropped to zero. As it was my happiness was almost non-existent. I guess that is what Einstein meant when he postulated his theory that time is relative.

The planet earth is a mere 4.6 billion years old, and the universe is calculated to be 13.7 billion years. When we look at an average life span of man on earth of 78 years we are but a tiny drop in the bucket.

Take an average human who is 78 years old and divide by 4,600,000,000 years then multiply by 100 equals 0.00001695 percent of the total time we exist. I don’t think we can measure things that small using normal devices. Given such a short life span we have to really put our lives into high gear to amount to anything. I guess that might be why it bothers me when I lose a morning to mundane activities instead of amazing, exciting, meaningful actions. What is more surprising is that even with all of the time I waste, that I can count my accomplishments with pride. What scares me is that the time I have ahead of me is far shorter than that which I have lived. It tells me to get off my ass and accomplish something before the last grain of sand passes through the orifice of life’s hour glass. It tells me to take those baby steps, and to take them very fast.