Devolution

I need help! My computer has again disassociated itself from my apple mail. I haven’t received a single message since November 17 and today is the twenty-ninth. I have tried untold times to reconnect it but get frustrated with the language of the help screens and the lack of remembering all the pass words and user names for every blooming step along the way. Luckily, I can access my mail thru a program called c-panel. Even that requires remembering a user name and multiple passwords. When will the computer world ever get simple? I was hoping that all the talk about a new internet would help alleviate the problems with all the theft and rampant hacking, but it remains just talk.

After watching the series Home Fires I long for a more simple time in life like it was in the nineteen forties and fifties: pay phones, small towns, lots of individual shops selling specific items like meat, bread, etc. bicycles instead of cars, trains instead of planes, small farms just outside town, country lanes, and not super highways, raising chickens in back yards.

Houses were small, but adequate. People only needed a place to shelter from the elements. Contacting your friend meant walking or cycling to his house and calling his name until he came out. Playing games was mostly done on the street in front of your house or on a table with cards or a board. Times have changed radically in my life-time, and not always for the better. The transition from no news to needing to have news in your hand all the time has begun to make us paranoid about the world. Auto accident death rates were on the decline because of the magnificent safety features included in new cars only to lose ground to people paying more attention to their personal contact equipment instead of paying attention to the road.

vital sign monitor in tablet PC, medical technology concept

Even health care has changed dramatically. We now have emergent care clinics we can run to every time we have the sniffles. Before we had chicken soup, or Vicks Vapo-Rub to take care of us. Although I love all the modern inventions and developments to make our lives better I am not sure we are any better for it. Before we learned to cope with a situation, now we expect someone to solve our problems immediately. If something doesn’t happen fast enough we begin to obsess or become anxious to the point of becoming incapable of existence. The solution for anxiety is usually some drug. Drugs make us dependent and less able to cope and sometimes create new forms of anxiety.

Before email and computers, we wrote memorandums to each other, or met face to face. Then the telephone arrived on our desks and we could talk to people. Phones did cut the number of memos but eventually there were too many calls to answer, and we sometimes had multiple lines coming to the same instrument. Email was a great solution to many business communication problems, and soon our in baskets were piled high with electronic messages, just like when we had paper memos. Today, we’ve migrated to messaging on phones. Texting will allow better faster communication for awhile at least until something else will be invented to take it’s place.

The entire world has the need for speed. Why? Beats the heck out of me, I kind of like the idea of devolving instead of evolving. The idea of moving toward a slower happier life seems much more sensible, and already such a phenomenon exists, it is called old age. Our bodies will tell us when to slow down and how to handle a day’s activities. If there are too many things to handle we will just defer them to another day or forget about them. Nature at its finest, without the need for a new invention to help us slow down.

Perhaps the youngsters will invent a few apps for coping with old age. Most likely they will all involve speeding up our routines and destroying our contentment. The nice thing about old age is that if we do decide to use a new fangled app to cope, and we find it only frustrates us we will merely stop using it, and, or find a senior way to work around it, or do without.

Kids Say the Darndest Things

Back in the nineteen fifties there was a wildly popular program segment hosted by Art Linkletter called “Kids Say The Darndest Things.” Show host Linkletter interviewed grammar school kids with simple questions and waited for the replies. Usually, there was so much laughter it took a while before he could challenge the answer. I’ve included a short video of one of his interviews to demonstrate his style.

This morning when I opened my email Art Linkletter’s program came to mind immediately. Why? Just read these short vignettes of teachers quizzing their young students.




A little girl was talking to her teacher about whales.
The teacher said it was physically impossible for a whale to swallow a human because even though it was a very large mammal its throat was very small. 
The little girl stated that Jonah was swallowed by a whale.  
Irritated, the teacher reiterated that a whale could not swallow a human; it was physically impossible. 
The little girl said, ‘When I get to heaven I will ask Jonah’. 
The teacher asked, ‘What if Jonah went to hell?’ 
The little girl replied, ‘Then you ask him’.
 

 
 
A Kindergarten teacher was observing her classroom of children while they were drawing. She would occasionally walk around to see each child’s work. 
As she got to one little girl who was working diligently, she asked what the drawing was. 
The girl replied, ‘I’m drawing God.’
The teacher paused and said, ‘But no one knows what God looks like.’ 
Without missing a beat, or looking up from her drawing, the girl replied, ‘They will in a minute.’
 

 

     A  Sunday school teacher was discussing the Ten Commandments with her five and six-year-olds. 
After explaining the commandment to ‘honor’ thy Father and thy Mother, she asked, ‘Is there a commandment that teaches us how to treat our brothers and sisters?’ 
From the back, one little boy (the oldest of a family) answered, ‘Thou shall not kill.’
 
ne day a little girl was sitting and watching her mother do the dishes at the kitchen sink. She suddenly noticed that her mother had several strands of white hair sticking out in contrast on her brunette head.  
She looked at her mother and inquisitively asked, ‘Why are some of your hairs white, Mum?’
Her mother replied, ‘Well, every time that you do something wrong and make me cry or unhappy, one of my hairs turns white.’ 
The little girl thought about this revelation for a while and then said, ‘Mummy, how come ALL of grandma’s hairs are white?’
 

 
 T
  he children had all been photographed, and the teacher was trying to persuade them each to buy a copy of the group picture.  ‘Just think how nice it will be to  look at it when you are all grown up and say, ‘There’s  Jennifer, she’s a lawyer,’ or ‘That’s Michael, He’s a  doctor.’ 
A small voice at the back of the room rang out, ‘And there’s the teacher, she’s dead.’
 

 
  A teacher was giving a lesson on the circulation of the blood Trying to make the matter clearer, she said, ‘Now, class, if I stood on my head, the blood, as you know, would run into it, and I would turn red in the face.’  
‘Yes,’ the class said
    ‘Then why is it that while I am standing upright in the ordinary positions the blood doesn’t run into my feet?’  
A little fellow shouted,
    Cause your feet ain’t empty.’
 


T
  he children were lined up in the cafeteria of a Catholic elementary school for lunch. At the head of the table was a large pile of apples. The nun made a note and posted on the apple tray: ‘Take only ONE.  God is watching.’
Moving further along the lunch line, at the other end of the table was a large pile of chocolate chip cookies. 
A child had written a note, ‘Take all you want.  God is watching the apples….’
 

  ~~
  I  t doesn’t matter how many people you send this to; just remember if it made you laugh, your friends will laugh too

Trouble Keeps Finding Me

Gosh my life has changed since I proclaimed myself a writer of fiction. The punch I took last Friday night at the bowling alley bar put me out of commission. Even though I went to the emergency room to get checked out, and sent home with a clean bill of health it seems I had some extenuating circumstances show up later. The guy who punched me, and who I then attacked viciously was not too happy. He was released from jail two days later and vowed to come and kill me.

He won’t succeed unless he puts a bullet into me from a block away. He won’t come near me because he knows that I can whup his ass in a heart beat crazy old man that I am.

Inspite of all that he showed up at my front door and began berating me as a human with utterly obnoxious obscenities, so I slammed the door in his face. Later that night I had a brick come flying through my front window. I filed a complaint with the police and the next day went to court to file a restraining order against him. If he comes within 500 feet of my front door he will go to jail.

Meanwhile, I had to repair a large picture window. First with plywood and finally with new glass, $$$$. For some reason before the window was closed up my furnace went out and I had to have a repair man come out to fix that too $$$$.

This afternoon, I went to the basement to retrieve something and the lights didn’t come on. One switch turns on three florescent fixtures at the same time. How could all three burn out simultaneously? I figured a breaker tripped, but I couldn’t find one that did. So, is this circumstance or is it the man’s evil double coming to taunt me?

Today, I learned that the guy who sucker punched me is a huge Biden fan. Since I am an even greater Trump fan I didn’t feel bad about the trouble he is in. If he continues to harass me with bricks he will pay the price of a person who believes in using fire-power as a deterrent. My front door and all my windows are now under camera surveillance so, it won’t be hard to identify the next poltergeist who guides a brick missile through my window.

The day after the incident my face was black and blue and a cap fell off my molar, $$$$$. He is getting even with me in the dentist chair since I was told this cap was temporary and that the proper fix would be an implant. There is nothing more aggravating than a tongue that won’t leave a huge cavity alone.

It is Friday night again and I am pondering whether to venture up to the bowling alley bar to see if the hot lady with shapely legs is there tonight. She caused me a lot of trouble and probably doesn’t even know it. I’ve decided to make this a Friday night without a date night period.

Believe it or not.

Liars Write Fiction

How big and how many lies can I tell in this post? Typically, I write the truth about my life and embellish the truth with opinion. Sometimes the opinion proves to be accurate; sometimes it is not, when it is not it is a lie. With that in mind let me tell a story about my Friday night without a date night. I had spent the day by myself trying to make it productive but failing miserably. By 4:30 I was hungry and put together a supper consisting of a frozen pizza. Two nights ago I opened a thin crust sausage pizza, and decided not to let it go to waste. To stay KETO I cut the pizza in half while still frozen. Therefore, I had half of a pizza still frozen. Not wanting to cook anything special I took the easy way out. It was perfect, but here I was at six p.m. dishes done and nothing to do. I read a few chapters of a book I borrowed from the library and decided that Friday night is date night and I should not be reading a book. For me it turns out to be Friday night without a date night. Take a walk, I said to myself. It’ll be the second walk of the day, but it is free, easy, and in the dark no one will know I am walking.

The downtown area pulls me toward it nine times out of ten, and it did again. Instead of walking the sidewalks I stuck my neck out and walked the street defying drivers to miss me as they passed by. I made it to town without injury and had to decide which tavern to settle in. My latest favorite is the bowling alley. It was open. I climbed the twenty-six stairs and strolled into a crowded bar. I spotted Sam a friend, and headed toward him. He in turn walked me to the bar and introduced me to some of his acquaintances there. The people were totally friendly and made space for me to sit with them at the bar. Needless to say there was no social distancing being practiced here unless you wanted to stand away from the bar. I chose the dangerous one, and sat. A State Farm agent Ken introduced me to his wife and four of their friends. We hit if off right away. He noticed my baseball cap and said “thank You for your Service.” The hat is dark blue with an American Flag embroidered on it. Across the flag is an eagle. Many people mistake it for a service corps hat. “I was never in the service,” I told him, but I am a patriot. “That’s okay” he said “what would you like to drink?”

Mari the bar owner was tending, and took my order for a Coors light. It’s one of the beers I will occasionally drink because it is low in carbs, almost KETO I lied to myself. The conversation drifted towards people we know and then toward the election results. Election results have become the most popular topic of the week. I didn’t really want to discuss the possibility of a new president, I thanked him for the beer, excused myself and walked back to Sam who I met on the way in. He was also engaged in discussing the election, so I reversed and went back to the bar.

Ken had drifted to the end of the bar and gave his seat to his wife. She was worth getting to know. A hottie about forty, five foot eight, fabulous legs, torso, and boobs. She also had a nice face. To stay cool on her walk to the bar she wore shorts and a tank top which is why I noticed her shapely legs. Her name is Anne with an “e” at the end. She told me how grateful she was to have their business in Tinley Park a neighboring town. During the shutdown they were super helpful to us by sending business our way. She told me she graduated from Tinley Park High School. “Oh,” I said “I worked right across the street from you. That is the high school no one knows about. Most times kids will tell me they graduated from Sandburg or Andrews, but rarely do they mention Tinley.”

“I loved it there,” she said.

“Why?” I asked.

“Because it was so private being surrounded by forest preserves and there were no local hangouts for the kids to congregate at. We all got on a bus and went home, no time for shenanigans.”

I leaned in close to her face to hear her better, and just as Anne and I were getting into each other’s history, I got bumped pretty hard from the back. I turned to see who it was, and got punched in the face by a stranger. My reaction was to swivel and unload a fist full of knuckles into his jaw. He was more caught off guard than I was. He spun around falling to the floor. “Fight, fight,” Is all I heard as I lunged at him on the floor and straddled his body. I started pummeling him about the head when someone grabbed me from the back and yanked me off. His face was pretty bloody and people were helping him to get up too.

“What was that all about?” I asked him.

“I can’t stand it when an old geezer like you is hitting on my best friend’s wife.”

“Well, I can’t stand being cold cocked for nothing.”

Frankfort’s finest men in blue arrived on the scene and restrained us with hand-cuffs. Officer Darrien walked me to a squad car. A paramedic attended to my attacker’s bleeding nose before he too was locked into a squad. Eventually, we were both arrested for causing a public disturbance and transported to jail.

In the morning, I was allowed to make my phone call. I called my daughter since I didn’t know any lawyers who could help me get out. In the meantime, I served time in the solitude of a cell crowded with drunks and addicts. Interesting people, all of them. Each had a story to tell. By far I was the oldest in the lot.

“Hello Joanie, this is Dad. I’m in jail, you have to help get me out of here.”

“WHAT? WHERE? WHY?”

“Frankfort, by the high school. I was arrested for fighting in a bar.”

“Fighting, about what?”

“A guy punched me in the face for nothing, and I defended myself”

“John and I will be there as quick as we can.”

It was noon Saturday before my Friday night without a date night finally ended.

Believe it or not.

Full Moon and Empty Arms

Usually every time there is a full moon visible in the night sky I send a text to several friends saying, “full moon and empty arms.” Of course it is because it is true. I see the moon as an opportunity for some romance, but it seems I never have anyone to romance. Last evening while walking home from a jaunt into town I spotted the moon coming up over the tree line. It was amazing. I never took my eyes off of it until I entered the house.

This afternoon and evening, my neighbors were camped out on their driveway waiting for trick or treaters to come by; the volume of tricksters is near nil. I handed out but a dozen pieces of candy since two this afternoon. On most halloweens I have to play Scrooge and ration the candy. Today, I was generous and I’ll still be sampling the left over wares six months down the road. On the way home from my afternoon walk I stopped by the neighbors and told them to watch for the moon tonight. Later, after supper dishes were done I put on my jacket and strolled over to point them at the moon. It looked like it was six feet high above the horizon and huge. They were amazed and appropriately so. One of them whipped out his phone and found his app that identifies planets, and stars in the night sky, all by holding the camera up at the object. He identified three planets, Mars, Venus, and Saturn all visible along with the most gorgeous moon ever. Of course the moon was like looking at a beach ball and the planets were like looking at a grain of sand. I have to get that app on my phone.

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