Ugh

It must be the barometric pressure that is affecting me again today. My sorry butt has been dragging behind me since getting out of bed this morning. The sky is grey, it is threatening to rain, but it isn’t raining, but it did drizzle a bit. Whatever it is, by noon I was asleep on the couch pretending to read. One would think I got out of bed by six in the morning, but it wasn’t until 8:30 that it finally happened. Three and a half hours later I’m sleeping like I had shoveled a truck load of coal yesterday.

Funk Depression

Actually, last evening I spent a lovely hour on the phone with a young lady from our Lions club. She had just given notice that she and her son were leaving the club, and I had to know why. I found out more than I needed to know to answer my question. It wasn’t because of our failing as a club. Her son just turned twenty-four, and is having acute medical problems which was caused by his birth. He was born three months early and had a very rough time making it into this life. The medical effect was to put him on a drug that would take its toll on his kidneys at a later time in life. It is now that time. That puts him at great risk with the virus too. His choice was to accept life over a service club that puts him at risk of death with every activity he helps. We need direct contact with people in order to serve them. In fact, as Past President of the club I am going wild trying to find a way that we can serve without direct contact.

Because this is a pandemic, every Lions club in the world is affected the same way. What do we do? How do we do it? Those are the questions we wrestle with. Do we wait until the world is rock solid secure that COVID-19 will not affect us anymore? That might be twenty years from now.

Many clubs are having virtual fund raising activities. One in particular struck me as being novel, i.e. a virtual Five K run. No, you don’t imagine running five kilometers, you actually run the distance and report your time to the race officials online. They match your time against all the participants and award the prize to the fastest runner. It isn’t just the same as having a hundred runners show up at one place, register, and who then take off with the gun and fifteen minutes later show up again sweaty and pooped. It just isn’t the same, but people might just take the bait because it is different. The trick is to have a worthy cause to be raising money for.

This year, I will serve as our Club Service Chair which means I will have to stimulate people to find projects to work on. Most times we wait for the projects to come to us, but that leaves huge gaps between service. With lots of members who join to “give back” we need to offer them many opportunities to fulfill their needs. It will be my game to root out the opportunities. COVID has ruined several of our popular events in the Village. To date the Blue Grass Festival is cancelled, the Art on the Green is cancelled, Thursday night car shows are cancelled, and on and on. All of these events have deferred til next year. But, what if next year COVID-19 is still here in force? Do we go back into hiding, or do we begin taking chances with catching the damn bug and fighting back? My guess is that we will not hunker down again, but will fight it off.

Watching the country burn during this rash of riots caused by one man’s brutality against another’s will no doubt cause a spike in COVID. None of the rioters have paid much attention to social distancing, and wearing masks. At this moment I would not want to be in President Trump’s position. He upset the country by closing down and making us all hurt, and now he has to wave a big stick at us to end rioting.

To me the biggest joke is the organizers who really thought they could get away with storming the White House, and are now shouting that Trump is violating their civil rights. If I were president I would have had the entire riot force shot, and their bodies piled on the lawn in front of the White House while I would have stood on the pile brandishing my AK 47 in one hand and the American Flag in the other. That is only one of the many reasons I am not a politician.

You Are Invited

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Lion Grumpa Joe is throwing a big party this Thursday evening 28 August 2014, for anyone 21 years old or older between 6:30 and 11:00 p.m. at Oak and Kansas Street in Historic Frankfort, Illinois. I’m calling it the Best Wurst Fest ever! You are all invited. Admission is by invitation only, and an invitation is a mere twenty dollars. The sawbuck gets you a chance to win a 10,000 dollar jackpot and gets two people into the party. Oh, I almost forgot, if you wait until Thursday night to buy a ticket at the door the invitation fee goes to twenty-five bucks. If you aren’t a party person, you can still buy the ticket to get a chance to win the jackpot because you don’t have to be there to win. Isn’t that a great idea, or what?

The food offered will be genuine German bratwurst sandwiches, with what else but sour kraut? If you are not hungry, and still wish to fill your need for salt, we offer authentic German twisted bread sticks lovingly called pretzels. Wash it all down with some fantastic imported German Warsteiner Pilsen beer. It is the rich creamy kind with a thick tall head like they pour in Munich, Heidelberg and Frankfurt during October Fest. If you can’t stand bratwurst, pretzels, or beer, I’ll have pizza, and soft drinks. If you can’t stand eating, I asked the famous Peter from the Bier Stube restaurant to entertain you while we wait for Die Musikmeisters Band to play oom-pah songs so we can all do the German Polka and Chicken Dance the night away.

I guarantee your friends will ask you on Friday morning if you had a good time last night because you will look like you have a package on.

Click the button below to get your admittance to the party, I added a $1.00 service fee so the entire sawbuck goes to charity.

Your ticket will be at Will Call in the Lions Wurst Fest Beer Tent ticket booth on Thursday night 28 August 2014. Please bring a printout of your PayPal receipt and a picture i.d. to verify your age and donation.

Remember, my invitation goes to everyone including your friends, relatives, neighbors, or the guy you sit next to on the train coming home from work, and the beauty of it is that one ticket gets two people through the gate, now is that beautiful or what?

Can’t you just taste it now?

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Lion Grumpa Joe

 

 

Gray-haired Man Freezes His Keester Off

It was a plan conceived to save an old man’s body from the suffering in low temperatures. It failed. Yesterday, I spent the morning hours begging for money to feed those in need. The plan called for a milder time today. deliberately, I signed up for  afternoon hours thinking the temperature would be milder. It wasn’t. Granted the temps were up from those in the morning, but they were lower this afternoon than they were yesterday in the morning. The result is that this gray-haired old man froze his keester off while begging.

The citizens of Frankfort were most appreciative and contributed generously. My fellow Lion, Tony, who has cerebral palsy and who has been a Lion for over thirty years, showed me up big time. He sat in his wheelchair bundled in his heaviest winter clothes and wrapped in blankets while begging. His bucket is always twice as heavy as any one else’s.

The manager from Jewel came out and told me to come in and to warm up, to have a complimentary cup of coffee, and to not bear the cold. I bravely told her it was better to freeze and look pathetic, people will give more willingly. Is that dumb or what?

My mind wandered as the cold penetrated my layers. This time it only took a few minutes to reach my joints, where yesterday it took an hour before I reached a point where my shoulders ached.

What a wimp I have become, I thought, remembering times past. Why just thirty-something years ago I went on a weekend campout with the Boy Scouts in below zero weather. Here I am standing within a few feet of a building in twenty-six degrees complaining about how cold I am. What a wimp those years have made me. Then, I looked across the front of Jewel to the second entrance and saw Tony patiently sitting in his wheel chair without a whimper. Yes, I am a wimp.

I remembered when I led my Boy Scout Troop 1776 to the Klondike Derby campout in Yorkville in January. The daytime temp was never above zero degrees, and the night-time temp dipped towards minus twenty. Amazingly, not a single scout or leader got frost bite or hypothermia. The crème de la crème came in the morning when the event ended and we all rushed to break camp and get the hell out of there. Not a single car started, and the leaders were all stuck starting frozen cars until four-thirty in the afternoon. That was not in the plan. We were smart enough to call home and have parents come to rescue their boys, but we were all stuck until the last car started and we all got out safely.

Yes! Thirty-plus years have turned me into a wimp. Where the hell is all this Global Warming stuff when you need it?

Bah Humbug Blahs

Winter Bear

Winter Bear

As good as I felt last Sunday after our Lion Club food basket distribution, I am in a Bah Hum Bug mood today. It’s two days before Christmas, and I have the blahs. Maybe its light affective disorder, or something like that. It has to be a hormone gone wild to make a person feel so down. I can’t explain it. It couldn’t be that for the last twelve months I’ve been brainwashed by the messiah speaking about failed economic policies, and  another preacher damning America, or that the entire banking system came tumbling down by some social engineering. The weather isn’t helping me out either. It’s way too cold, it’s snowing and blowing. My joints all ache, and my muscles long for a walk, but I’m too lazy to go out .  Maybe I feel blue because I just wrote to my Senator telling him not to give himself a raise, and I expect him to give me the finger instead. Watching my 401K vanish  hasn’t added any light into my life either.

For many years, people referred to me as Scrooge. I created that personae in order to survive my job. We always had ‘performance appraisals’ right before Christmas. Often,  the news I gave my staff was not what they wanted to hear, therefore, the “Scrooge,” moniker. A negativity overtook me like the devil. I became negative the year around. Then one day, I heard a motivational speaker, and he changed my life. His name is Bernie,  he’s a medical doctor, and he changed my life with his speech. I learned that “positive” works much more effectively than “negative.”

It took me several years to break out of the negativity habit, but I did it. I  became a positive person. That is why these blahs are affecting me so. My mind wants to revert to negative, yet I know its the wrong way to go.  I see myself  being tempted by Darth Vader.  I hear him calling me to the “dark side.”

Several times today, I had to stop what I was doing to  find a positive moment to reflect upon. It has kept me going. I have to make alist of everything positive happening in my life today. It will help me bury the blahs.

Accomplishment!

Trees Over PacificSorry for the delay in writing new posts. I have been trying to catch up on my “other” projects. My Lions work has suffered through the pre-election days, and now I must put it in gear to give the Lions their due.

I find it useful at this time of the year to reflect and prepare an accomplishment report of my activities. I just completed one for the Lions Club. I will begin preparation of my personal accomplishment list soon. Why is an accomplishment list useful? When I worked for a living, the list served to remind me of what I had completed for the company. I had fresh recollection to remind my boss at “review” time just what I did for the company.

 Usually, at the end of the year, I beat myself up thinking that I have not accomplished any of my goals. It is natural to remain unsatisfied when the new year stares you in the face, and asks “what’s next?”  Disappointment takes over as the predominant emotion, and a feeling of despair follows. I begin to question why I wasted a year without any hard fast results to show off. That is why I began to list my personal accomplishments. It is encouraging to recall, and see all of the “baby steps” I did take, and all of the projects I did complete.

It is easier than you think to do this. Just sit in front of your computer, and start. I use the word processor, and begin by listing the first thing that comes to mind. Such as “I initiated a BLOG. I BLOGGED 85 times. I set up a new website for my club, etc. The list goes on for a couple of pages until I run out of recollections. I number each item on the list to give me an indication of progress. Usually, I don’t run out of ideas until I reach one hundred and fifty.

 If you chose to start a list of your own, I recommend that you include all the important areas of your life. I recommend using your “High Payoff” activities list for this. When you concentrate on how you spent your time in a specific arena, the recall flows, and your accomplishments build. Of course, if the list in a specific High Payoff activity is short, it points to an area for improvement.

By the time I have finished this excercise, I am energized and ready to begin planning another year of goals.

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