Saturday, January 30, 2016

Seriously, don't people have dirty minded friends?!

Wasn't there one person, one friend, who pulled the owner aside and said,
"Hey, yeah, about the store's name...."

I was just being honest

That'll make your orifice pucker

Angel report

Baby Queen came home Wednesday afternoon with strep throat. Being the hands on mom I am, I've got it too. Feel like crap but still having to be mom. Sorry for the lack of posting. Here's the new Mom-mobile. I seriously want this, fuck with wirecutter:

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Mechanic Angel needs a moment...

Open Letter to Grandpa

Dearest Grandpa,

You and your family are facing the diagnosis of a loved child with autism. I know you probably expect me to send you my sympathies, but that's not going to happen. Not because I don't sympathize with the journey you're about to take, but because it's not the tragedy that it seems. You see, autism is a neurological condition, not a disease. It's not an injury. It's not critical or life-threatening or terminal. Your family will never have to watch your beloved son and grandson endure endless surgeries and medical treatments that seem worse than the disease itself. You won't have to sit next to his hospital bed, watching and waiting and praying he makes it through the night. You probably won't have to bury him much too young. That's not saying that the road ahead is going to be easy, it just won't be tragic.

Now what I can remember of the times right after diagnosis aren't going to apply to your family. Thankfully, in the last 18 years, while the diagnostic rate of autism has skyrocketed, so has the research, training and understanding. More is understood about autism, more is understood about the nutritional aspects, therapy, and education. Teachers, aides, diagnosticians, therapists and doctors know more now than they did when I was just facing what you're facing now. Paths of therapy have been blazed, you will have access to more help and support, more options and a much broader future.
It took almost a year to find a doctor who could give me answers, and when I got the answers, it was an uphill battle to find support and education. To find therapists and teachers and support staff, and then to find training for them. In the last 18 years, great strides have been taken in developing programs that support and integrate autistic kids into the mainstream. No longer are they warehoused in rooms far away from their peers, isolated and stagnant. Now there are school programs, and after-school programs, and transitional programs. There are support departments in colleges and universities to help students on the spectrum access higher education.

The key right now is to not see autism as a limitation, but as an alternate route. Yes, you and his parents are going to have to adjust your dreams for him a bit, but you don't have to completely scrap them. Gone are the days when doctors break the news with the advice to abandon all hope for any type of productive life. Understanding Autism is a Broad Spectrum condition is key. There is a broad variety of symptoms, on a full scale from minor to severe. What this basically means is if you've seen one Autistic child, you've seen exactly ONE Autistic child. Both of the Cute Chicks are Autistic, and both are distinctly individual in their challenges and talents. Teen Queen can talk, but not hold in depth conversations or answer direct questions (her interview with her lawyer for custodial guardianship, "S., do you want to live in your own apartment?" "I don't know." "Do you want to live with your parents?" "I don't know." "S., what do you want?" "Banana cream pie." End of interview.) She loves sports and has a talent for statistics, organization and problem solving. She's a visual/tactile learner. Her limits are frequent and somewhat violent meltdowns that we're working on. She needs to work in a quiet environment with limited human interaction. Baby Queen is nonverbal and resists using sign language, PECS (picture exchange card system), or iPad. Does that mean she can't? No, she just refuses. We have a theory that she hasn't found anyone smart enough to understand her communications. BQ's strengths are an uncanny knack for reading people. And for blatant manipulation. She's the HBIC (Head Baby In Charge), everyone does her bidding, which is remarkable considering her lack of communication. My nephew is high-functioning/Asperger's. He's socially clueless, but learning. He's brilliantly creative and published his first graphic novel at 16. He found out SyFy Network's "Z Nation" was being filmed near his home in Spokane, found out how to get his SAG card, put together a resume and portfolio and then asked his mom to take him to the auditions. He's been a zombie extra in every episode of the first and second season. He even helped his little brother (not on the Spectrum) become an extra. The point is, be open to your grandson's abilities. Don't shut down any possibilities. Don't focus on his weaknesses or challenges, just work to creatively handle them.

Understand that, like any neurotypical child, your grandson can become great and wonderful things, can have a full, happy and loving life. You may not get to fulfill all of your dreams with him, he may not be everything you'd imagined he could be. You just need to be open to who he can become and the fantastic journey you will take together. Your journey will be full of love and frustration and laughter and tears and patience. I can't stress that enough. Patience and a good sense of humor will be your most valuable tools. Let go of the old dreams and expectations. I actually had to go through a "mourning" period after getting the girls' diagnoses, an adjustment from the children I thought I'd have to the kids I actually have. And when you start thinking "small", review some names of autistic/Asperger people:

And even possibly:

Knowing calligraphy will be awesome!

Our local schools tried doing away with teaching cursive writing for a year. That's how long it lasted before parents protested. Kids, being the long-range thinkers they are, don't see the importance of knowing how to read and write cursive, so they were all for dropping a "useless, archaic form of communication" from their already overloaded with nonsense curriculum. A local man, WWII vet, former school teacher, principal, superintendent.  gave a lecture to every class that would welcome him on how the written word has been used to create and control societies through history. When only the elite can translate historic and religious texts, they can tell the populace anything they want. When only the elite can read the original Bill of Rights and Constitution, they can tell the ignorant citizens of this once great nation whatever serves their purposes and keeps the peasants in line. We are just a few generations away from this horror. Fight for your kids' rights to learn how to read and understand important documents on their own. 

Friday, January 22, 2016

A lesson learned

My experience with the Kerodins has been both expensive and valuable. I'm out close to $2800 total between III Arms Company and donations to their dojo and IIIPS. The first I thought of as an investment, and as such I expected the money to be used specifically to get a firearms production company started. Start-up capital. Now, anyone with investment experience knows that start-ups have a very small chance of survival, let alone success. It's a high-risk gamble, but there are certain times when the gamble is worth it, even if it's not a monetary success.

With investments, you don't always expect to see returns, but you do expect a certain degree of accountability and transparency from those to whom you've entrusted your money. With III Arms Company, it's not that it failed, it's the question of accountability on the part of the Kerodins, and their lack of openness with the Founding Members. We gave them money for a specific purpose, we would like to have a detailed accounting of where it went. The problem is also the best lesson learned: while we gave money for the purpose, and while we were "honored" as Founding Members of a new company, none of us received anything indicating us as legal owners of the company. Nothing on the financial record establishing a legal right for any donor to claim over the company. What does this mean exactly? Well, it means that the Founding Members have as much claim to the company assets, records, or profits as anyone not sending money to the Kerodins. Exactly zero. Once the money changed hands, without any legal documents of ownership, it became the Kerodins' property. With only their names on ownership documents and business accounts, the Founders were effectively shut out of any claims or liabilities. That is the one good thing about this, any lawsuits against III Arms Company by the government or purchasers go straight to the Kerodins and no Founding Member will get dragged into it.

So Lesson #1:

When investing in any business enterprise, get a contract, get acknowledgement in writing that you have a legal stake in the business that entitles you to quarterly statements, rights to liquidated assets in case of a bankruptcy, and a share of the profits if it succeeds. Have this documentation signed, dated, notarized if possible and in your possession. 

Now let's talk donations and gifts. After the III Arms debacle, all of the enterprises the Kerodins came up with and promoted fell into the "donation and gift" category. Nothing was sold as a for profit enterprise. No one was offered a stake in the St. Maries dojo, the Kerodins made it very clear that they were soliciting gifts to make the dojo something that would reflect positively on the Patriot community. This was an emotional appeal, "do it for the Community". Of course, the only people who directly benefited from the gifts purchased on Amazon and sent directly to the Kerodins guessed it, the Kerodins. All the money collected for the TOC? Donations/gifts. Money collected as "dues" for the III Patriot Society? Donations/gifts. There was no promise or guarantees made by the Kerodins for any of it, but that doesn't matter. Legally, a donation or monetary gift becomes the property of the recipient and the giver relinquishes all control over it. You can ask for proof, verification or results until you're blue in the face, but the Kerodins are not legally required to respond. As the "recipients of gifts", they have no responsibility to use the funds in any manner other than how they desire.

And now Lesson #2:

When considering donating or gifting money or materials to any person or entity, understand that once that money/material leaves your possession, it becomes the recipient(s)' possession to do with as they will. Be very sure of the nature of the recipient before donating.  Your only recourse, once you believe the recipient is misusing donations, is to stop donating. Period.

So there you have it in a nutshell.

Don't invest without legal documentation, a handshake just isn't enough anymore, and for some, words mean nothing.

Don't donate money/materials and expect to have any say or control over how it's used by the recipient.

I'm not as trusting as I once was, I've grown up.

Max could learn something here

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Why Jada Pinkett Smth is boycotting Home Depot

III to III: Help for a Patriot's daughter

From my comments:

I wouldn't normally ask, but this is not normal. If my wife loses her second child, her baby, I am sure she will be buried with her. Any help publicizing no matter how small is appreciated. Thank you
January 21, 2016 at 7:18 AM
Folks, this is a plea from the heart of a parent. This is a man on his knees praying for a miracle. If you aren't able to donate, pray. This family is up against a very hard wall. There is no more devastating event than for a parent to bury a child. But the thought of burying two? No.This is from eatgrueldog's blog:

So this is where it all started
I was at work on Oct. 21st when I got a call from my wife
I was doing irrigation service right around the corner from home (Thank God) and it was the call that no man ever wants to get
Her son who was 38 had just been killed in a high speed car accident outside of Tampa
I say her son because even though we have been married for 26 Yrs. I did very little raising of him
But anyway, that was the start
Then, the week before Christmas our Daughter Shaylyn who is 36 calls to inform my wife that she has adrenal cancer
I say ours because even though she is not my blood, I have raised her since age 8 as my daughter
Anyway, she also has tumors on her kidneys and spots on her liver that are most likely also tumors
She was hospitalized for 2 weeks because her blood pressure was out of control and she was seen by a specialist
She was supposed to have laproscopic surgery to have the tumors removed immediately
That was weeks ago
Unfortunately she is uninsured and medically needy and no doctor will touch her
She will have to wait until an endocrine surgeon  decides to donate his charity
Or not
I live in Florida in a county that has the highest unemployment rate in the state and own a business that has been drained over the past 6 yrs. to nothing
We as a family are in dire straights
Without treatment Shay is destined for a short life with a lot of suffering
I don’t know if it is pride or denial but she will not quit working to go on disabilty
And at this point the process is probably too long anyway
The surgery may or may not save her
I don’t even know
To tell you truthfully I don’t even know what it costs
But I can’t sit and do nothing
I haven’t asked her approval yet and don’t really care
I have a link below for paypal to donate
I don’t know how to get a button so it is just a link
I don’t use paypal for anything other than buying so any funds donated will be earmarked.
Even if you don’t donate I would sure appreciate you passing this on

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Meanwhile at WiscoDave's

Easiest choice I've made all day

Big productions like Disney on Ice and large circuses are held in the Civic Center. I took Teen Queen to Disney every year from 6 to 14, she was just mesmerized and I was nauseous at the amount of money we spent. But she's never asked for much and there aren't a lot of things that she enjoys. Our main goal was for the Cute Chicks to have as much fun and as normal a childhood as possible.

Now, her 6th grade year, a large circus came to the CC and gave out student tickets at the local schools. Pretty smart, huh? Kids get in free, must be accompanied by a parent at $20 a pop. Then all the concessions you HAVE to have. So naturally, I had to suck it up and get over my deep set fear of clowns, and take her to the circus. Oh joy. One fun thing was the elephant rides in the parking lot, not that I could get her on one, but it was still cool; and they had a smaller elephant inside on the concourse that you could sit on for pictures. It was this that puzzled TQ. Up till now, every show she saw at the CC was something or other on ice, and here were elephants. She came to an abrupt halt, staring at the large beast, and I thought, "Oh crap, meltdown in 3...2...1..." But that wasn't the issue. You could see the wheels turning in her curly little head. Oh so quietly, I heard her question, "Elephants....on Ice?!" It was all I could do to keep it together.

We got in and found our seats, got a snow cone and a glow stick necklace in purple and settled in. Well, I settled, she sat on the edge of her seat for two and a half hours. Acrobats, motorcyclists, aerialists, the whole shebang. And.....clowns. Her eyes were wide and unblinking, her smile was ear to ear, and her squeals were happy and joyous when one of the clowns came up to us (did I mention we had really good seats?) and interacted with her. I kept a lid on my terror for her joy. Then there were beautiful Arabian horses, and lions and tigers and bears, OH MY! Well not bears, but there were lions and tigers.

When it was finally over and the lights came up, I looked over at her and she was glowing. She had seen and experienced something in person for the first time and I got to experience it with her. We saw a few more Disney on Ices after that, but we've been back to the circus every year since then, and every year it's the same. Joyful Cute Chick.

Oh yeah, I'd watch it


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Politically incorrect but funny

Because I couldn't possibly have been busy enough

Max, escaping through the side door when I opened it for a UPS delivery, found himself on the wrong end of a skunk. I had Charlie for 14 years, I never had this problem with her, she was too smart to get herself skunked. But Max? Noooooo......

Fortunately, when we adopted Mad Max, he came with $50 worth of PetSmart coupons, one of which was for this product:

Skeptical, I got it because, hey you never know, right? Damn am I glad I got it. Took 4 wash and rinse cycles, but he smells bearable. 

I don't know if he's embarrassed or pouting, but he won't make eye contact and he's hiding under Teen Queen's computer desk.

For Jesse in DC

I've found my spirit animal

Who wore it better?

One, leggings are NOT pants.
Two, you should never wear animal prints 
if you're roughly the same size as the animal represented.

I'm good, I'm not that good

I would love to have that kind of talent and vision.

When you're so busy you forget a headline

Dear God, is it only Tuesday???

Monday, January 18, 2016

Let us briefly discuss "The 80s"

Yeah, I know, for the most part the 80s sucked music wise. But Glenn had a few memorable tunes.
One from Beverly Hills Cop:

And this one, hauntingly sad:

And what is the deal with all the sax in the 80s?!

"Lighten up while you still can..."

Well I'm a-runnin' down the road, tryin' to loosen my load
I've got seven women on my mind
Four that want to own me, two that want to stone me
One says she's a friend of mine
Take it easy, take it easy
Don't let the sound of your own wheels drive you crazy
Lighten up while you still can
Don't even try to understand
Just find a place to make your stand, and take it easy
Well, I'm a-standin' on a corner in Winslow, Arizona
Such a fine sight to see
It's a girl, my Lord, in a flat-bed Ford
Slowin' down to take a look at me
Come on, baby, don't say maybe
I gotta know if your sweet love is gonna save me
We may lose and we may win, though we will never be here again
So open up I'm climbin' in, so take it easy
Well, I'm a-runnin' down the road tryin' to loosen my load
Got a world of trouble on my mind
Lookin' for a lover who won't blow my cover, she's so hard to find
Take it easy, take it easy
Don't let the sound of your own wheels make you crazy
Come on baby, don't say maybe
I gotta know if your sweet love is gonna save me
Oh, we got it easy
We outghta take it easy

Master lyricist, a turn of phrase

Glenn Frey dead at 67

 My heart is broken. I can't breathe. Glenn Frey was my first celebrity crush. I remember when my big brother brought home the Hotel California, LP in vinyl, and I would sneak in and listen to it when he was out partying. I didn't understand any of it, didn't know what drugs were, didn't know what they were singing about, but I was mesmerized. And hooked.

Eagles bandmate Don Henley said in a statement: “He was like a brother to me; we were family, and like most families, there was some dysfunction. But, the bond we forged 45 years ago was never broken, even during the 14 years that the Eagles were dissolved. We were two young men who made the pilgrimage to Los Angeles with the same dream: to make our mark in the music industry — and with perseverance, a deep love of music, our alliance with other great musicians and our manager, Irving Azoff, we built something that has lasted longer than anyone could have dreamed. But, Glenn was the one who started it all. He was the spark plug, the man with the plan."

RIP Glenn, say hey to Bowie and Lemmy.

I would pay full price to see this movie