Monday, December 1, 2008


while sitting at dinner. From table with couple in their fifties and daughter (?) who may have been 20 and child about two and even younger child.

@ 20 year old daughter: "And then the judge asked me where do I live?"

even younger child: "naaaaaaahnaaaaaaAAAAA!"

@ 2 year old child: "He said Nana!!!"

Nana(?): something, something...."Kennesaw".

@ 20 year old daughter: "Austell Mom! I know where I was living at the time. and then the judge told me I had better be sure."

Me: "check please."

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

napping on the bus

Rain. Upon the bus. Slithering down, confusing the view. Man on foot. Silent train tracks. Sushi for dinner. Life in the South.
Talk in the distance. Pointless and loud. Pine trees with no beauty except in their form. Traffic battling kudzu for what the meek were to own.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Went to stay with sister P so brother in law could go to nephew's basketball game. Enjoyed spending time with her and she was very gracious when I could not understand what she was trying to tell me. I did catch 80% of it, although only half of that on her first attempt. ALS has left her a shell of herself and now even her speech is very limited. It isn't fair. I'm old enough to realze life isn't fair but noone deserves to go through this. Least of all a young mother with a daugher in college and a 16 year old son.

I had returned to Atl afer graduating college. After one year P had decided college wasn't for her and asked if she could move in until her boyfriend graduated and they could begin their life. Somewhere along the way they split up and as soon as I met S I knew she would be interested in him. After they met they were inseparable and I was a bit concerned when they announced their engagement within a year. 21 years later they have two great kids and a bond as strong as our parents. S has been great for her, and she for him.

She smiled politely as I tried to follow what she ws trying to tell me. Mostly about relatives who had visited, her favorite TV show. I mananged to get her breathing machine on and off of her when she wanted. Her hair is going grey and is cut short now. She can move a few fingers on her left hand. Her birthday is Sat. She will be 45.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

loose leafs & hard wood

More local color this year than any that I can recall. (imagine scenic photo here)

Usually phone calls to the folks follow the same script but Dad had an interesting tale last week. He had a nightmare, either I, or one of his brothers, or my nephew (he couldn't recall but named the suspects in that order) were having a heated arguement with him. Whoever the other person was at some point they picked up a hammer and attempted to swing it at him so Dad tried to jump away from the danger. That is when he actually stumbled out of the bed and ran headfirst into the bedpost resulting in a bloodied head and small gash in his head.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

September slips in

where we find our hero with a broken toe but also the satisfaction of having now pedaled over every bit of the SCT that is located in the state. (not at one time) The foundation opened up last part of trail Labor Day weekend and I discovered where they had put all of the hills. Most of the trail is fairly level. A few arcs that carry you over a major road and a few rolling hills but nothing like what lies around mile marker 45ish. But that isn't how I broke my toe. Neither was it black and blue from the wooded hike along border of the Carolinas where I spent first half of holiday weekend with Uncle and Aunt. They had spent many summers supplying boat, condo and fuel for myself and other relatives and I realized hadn't been up there in couple of years. Fortunately they were staying at home for holiday so ran up there Fri PM, did hike, watched football, drove back home Sunday, stopping by sister P's house for brief visit and then back here where some old friends who had moved away three years ago were in town visiting. Had supper at our old favorite local Mexican restaurant. And while margarita was very good that didn't lead to toe issue either. Bike ride was Monday AM and two major hills pushed the muscles that were already complaining about effect of hike to point where they finally said No at one hill. First time I have ever had to push this bike up a hill since buying it. After ride ran up to C's for late lunch and a very brief hike to local falls. As we were leaving right foot slipped and as I braced myself toe smashed into another rock.

In other news work has been crazy for last few months but now it appears we may be losing one division so lots of questions buzzing around.

Had wonderful massage and now off to zzzzzz.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


I was feeling a bit sorry for myself today. What with it being the 48th anniversary of my appearance here and all but then got email from x-wife, a call and card from x-g/f; a call and email from best friend and her daughter, a thoughful gift from one sister and greetings from another who is buried in school work. Folks promised that they will have time to get card this weekend but doubt that as they are keeping youngest two grandkids and are overaged 13 to 157 so I don't expect to hear from them until they recover sometime around Labor Day.

Over the last half decade I have only wanted one thing and she is still as silent as she was when she ran away with all of my enthusiasm and belief in soul mates, true love, complete honesty and various other fairy tales.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Annual Birthday Ride

My oldest nephew turned 21 Friday. My sister and he lived with me a year right after her divorce. He is finding his way. Called me last month to let me know he is proposing to his girlfriend later this month. They aer coming into town for a visit. Evidently she has never been to a professional baseball game so I have ordered some tickets for us.

My own birthday, celebrating the 27th anniversary of my 21st birthday is in a couple of days but I was eager to complete my annual birthday ride so struck out for the trail Sat AM. Didn't get as early a start as I had intended but did manage to complete the task before the heat became miserable. Have a feeling that 50 may be the last year I bike my age, or else I may break it down into a morning and evening session, or better yet, move my birthday to November when the temperature is a bit more comfortable. Taking tomorrow off for errands and dining at my favorite grease spot, which will undo any good from Saturday's exercise. Dinner with some friends next week for a belated celebration.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Thought for the day

The thought that got away. Last viewed as my eyelids grew heavy on the bus into work this morning. At that moment the spark that was The Thought lit and leapt across some synapse in my brain, showering a heavenly vision that shown upon the inside of said eyelids and led to a smile spreading involuntarily and gently across my face as my body yielded to a last call from Mr Sandman. Leaving my mind alone to create spectacular beauty and ponder life's mysteries.

Or so I'd like to think that is what my mind was off doing while my mouth hung agape, drool slipping out of the corner of my mouth as my snoring grew so loud that it even awoke me. But sometime between the eyelids closing and the mouth opening there was some creative spark that was ignited. Unfortunately during the day it was misfiled. Probably by a conscious that was (temporarily) focused on the day job, aka work.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

What happened to April?

How did three weeks fly by since last post? You'd think I had been leading an exciting whirlwind life. Sadly that is not true. The good news is the car's problem was easily fixed and if things work out right the repair bill for gutter work on home won't be to bad either.

Oldest niece turned 18 last Friday and got letter of acceptance (finally) from school she wanted to attend. Not sure why it took so long to accept someone who scored a 1980 on SAT, a 29 on ACT, and was an all A student.

This weekend was spent recuperating from some bug that hit me early Sat morning. Felt awful most of yesterday and am finally getting appetite back now. Did manage to finish cleaning garage, blew leaves out of gutter, and got office organized so I did manage to accomplish some things. At least with the stomach bug and chills the temptation to get out on bike was easy to overcome. Weatherfolks claimed entire weekend would be wet but most rain fell overnight and only one brief sprinkle today so would have been a great biking weekend.

Absolutely nothing humorous has happened last couple of weeks. Unless you count breaking up with C, getting sick or having COO mention possibilty of company shutting down to be in any way humorous. So my new goal is to treat May 1 as my own personal New Year and blog more frequently, rediscover humor, and finally find that kayak that is out there waiting for me.

Monday, April 7, 2008

pollen days and Mondays always get me down

Don't know if it was the sudden wave of naseau right before time to leave work or the fact the truck wouldn't start once I got off of bus but the day definitely took a turn downward. Actually I think it started with the tacky email I got at work from up the food chain. Anyway, was able to shift truck into neutral and slide down hill. It started and didn't die before getting home so I was able to hop in car from there and make it to blood drive.

I've mentioned fact my Dad is a mechanic before and it is the greatest of ironies that the mechanic gods decided to make sure his only son would have so much car trouble. Actually I can't really complain, okay sure I can, but realistically only once did I breakdown in heavy traffic. Rest of time has been more of a nuisance. And it isn't just one make of car. I am somehow cursed and the key to any model will soon fail to start the car. Part of it is my very unrealistic approach to all things mechanical. I am far to legalisgtic. I put gas in it, I change oil, I buy tires, therefore nothing should ever fail. A spark plug that dies is just one a lazy one and its failure to spark has nothing to do with anything real. Like I said it is very unrealistic but another car repair bill is the last bit of reality I want right now.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

one of those days...

should have stayed in bed. have a great weekend.

Monday, March 31, 2008

my homework

My oldest niece will be graduating high school this spring and my sister had asked family/friends to write her a letter about lessons we had learned in life.

Dear A-

There are some very important things that I have learned in m life. First, the D in CD stands for D-i-s-c. (an inside joke). Second, if you have to go to the bathroom while waiting for a flight never, ever leave your newspaper behind. Someone will take it and then you are stuck on a two hour flight with a thief and nothing to read while you are suspended 30,000 feet above the earth. I just hope the thief isn't the pilot.

You have excelled in high school and I have no doubt that you will in college and life. I imagine a lot of others will tell you to be honest with yourself, go for yhour dreams, set goals etc... All of those are good pieces of advice.

(pause here while I search for the second page of the letter which I had laid down right next to the monitor last night but which seems to be missing now. Which is a shame because it really held some deep philosophical observations about life with gripping introspective that would help guide not only a seventeen year old but elected representatives, religious leaders, and others who can't seem to find a real job. Oh well, any real insight will have to wait until I locate it because one of the painful lessons I have learned is that once that idea has found its way out of my head and onto paper it is completely forgotten)

Anyway, in conclusion the most important thing is that you don't assume some evil hearted stranger stole your paper until you double check to make certain that it didn't simply slide underneath your seat. It will only lead to embarrassment. Especially if you have leapt atop the chair and loudly accused your fellow passengers.

I hope this helps.


Uncle K

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Sushi Confessional

I was going to be cutting it close by stopping for lunch before MD appointment but remembered sushi place on north side of town that I used to eat at pretty often and not only had food always been good but service was very quick so I exited off interstate and pulled into parking lot.

The bar itself only had one customer although several tables were filled. I waited a couple of minutes before hostess/waitress pointed me to the bar. In fitting with one of Murphy's Laws the one time I was in a hurry the service was dreadfully slow but finallhy the sushi chef noticed I was about to leave and called for a waitress and things seemed to finally be moving along. Soon I had my sushi/shashimi combo in front of me, plus a salad, soup, and bowl of rice. By now I didn't have time to eat all of it so I focused on the fish and soup. The chef had a bit of a break now so came over to ask how the food one. I stuck my thumb up while swallowing a last morsel of tuna and replied that it was excellent. She wrinkled her nose a bit and said, "I only eat it one or two times a year. Never cared for raw fish, prefer McDonalds or Checkers." My jaw dropped and I blurted out (forgetting to use my inside voice) "You don't like sushi?!?!" Suddenly her English became broken and she shook her head, "I not speak much English good, don't understand". I felt badly if I had blown some deep secret for her but also made a mental note to stick to the Japanese restaurants on my side of town and stick to topics like politics, religion and sports with sushi chefs but never ever ask if they like fish.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom

My Mom turned 77 over the weekend. I took she and Dad out for dinner Sat evening. Her favorite, shrimp. She looks great although both of them now have hearing aids and poor Dad's back is bothering him again. Looking at Dad now is not the same as even a decade ago. He made his living through physical labor and that that strength is obviously not what it used to be. So he hesitates now in conversations, especially around people who are not his family. (C & son went with me to meet them) He is polite, as always but not wanting to offend, he withdraws. Also even with the hearing aid the backround noise in the restaurant bothered him some. He later found a phone book and looked up a guy he used to work in the garage with 30+ years ago before we moved. The guy is dieing of cancer. Everyone Dad knows seems to be dead or dieing. His silence grew.
Mom has always enjoyed learning, reading, solving puzzles, playing Scrabble, engaging others in conversation. Ironically Dad was always the more outgoing but then again I always remember him either with family, at church, or at his work, all of which defined him. Mom does not speak as much as Dad in church, or even with his family, but she lights up when it is the immediate family or even with friends. I know they love each other, have been devoted to each other for most of their lives now. They have always been affectionate around us, never heard them argue once until I was an adult and that was just about Dad following (or not) too closely. They seemed ideal for each other. Still, as I gave Mom her flowers, card, balloon, and gifts I tried to think of any flowers or gifts Dad had brought her. There had been dinners, but I don't know if he had ever picked out a gift on his own for her. He would usually have one of my sisters pick out something. The one time I went with him to get Mom's gift was when he bought her a sewing machine. (Which in his defense we needed at the time and she did want one. But even at that young age I knew that was not what anyone wanted for their brithday)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

The good, the bad, the ugly

Even though it has been over four years now it still only takes the slightest thing to send me hurling back into the post-L funk. H forwarded me an email she received from her x husband. They have been divorced for at least three years, it was nasty, there were things said between them that cut deep, economic threats made, worries about whether personal effects would ever be returned or posted on line as a means of revenge. As H's long time friend and confidante I should be happy they have reached a point where they can be civil, exchange e-mail, phone calls, even have dinner together every once in a while and the fact they do these things really doesn't bother me. It is simply jealousy. Why is my friend's x, able to have a conversation with her, share thoughts, ideas, concerns, maybe even just gossip about mutual acquaintances while I have heard nothing from L since she took the ring and ran. It is self pity, I know that. And it is still a wound. A kindred spirit, best of friends, closest of loves, promises of tomorrow, all gone and only the echo of my "why?" still sounding in my ears.

What is worse is that for over two years now I've been in another relationship. It has had bumps, there were a couple of months we didn't speak, there are still times when it seems strained and my focus should be on it. And (in my defense) mostly it is... but then one email from an old friend, whose wounds have healed reminds me that I am not. And that I am not as good a friend as I should be, or the only thing I would feel would be happy for her. Guess I still have room for quite a bit of improvement.

(plus it is V-Day)

Monday, February 11, 2008

work & reward

the ivy is off of the lattice
the basement is junk, dust, & cobweb free.
the office is presentable and files are updated
carpet is vacuummed, clothes washed & dried

legs are sore from bike ride
stomach is still arguing with me about trip to favorite Hot Dog joint, but it was worth it.

Tomorrow at the office? Not going to worry about that until 7:30 AM

Sunday, February 10, 2008


No!!! Must clean house. Must not give in to bright sunshine and take bike out for ride. Must focus!!! Can feel my will weakening, hear the siren call of the UV rays as they smash against the window pane. Must not given in.... must clear garage out and overcome arch enemy Dust!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

just wondering

What if one bad apple does spoil the whole bunch?

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Don't Vote Here

At lunch I knew I was in trouble. The computers had crashed so I took AP to lunch, anticipating a bite of pizza but when the waiter mentioned the tilapia special I opted for that. Big mistake which I have been paying for most of the afternoon. It really hit me on the bus home but got back to the car and headed off to vote. They had 11 machines available in the school gym but because only one lady was checking IDs only two or three were being utilized at one time. She seemed to take a bit longer with my card, (C would say it is the beard that causes these untrusting glances) and seemed reluctant to send me on to the next booth, where, after standing in line for 40 minutes I was told was exactly not where I was supposed to be. Evidently the county had created a new voting spot, a church that was all of two miles down the road. It was 6:22 and I had to park about a half mile away along the side of the two lane road. The man in front of me was beaming that this was his first chance to vote, two of his kids were electing to ignore his instructions/pleas to not continuously dash across the parking lot and his wife tried several times, unsuccessfully, to corral them with a motherly glare that was laughable compared to my Mom. The results were certainly less successful than my Mom's. Once inside, after filling out a second card, I ended up behind a lady who was suffering from a very severe case of hiccups. I considered trying to frighten her by telling her that come November one of these candidates was going to end up being elected President (not one of them specifically just the fact that these were the ones we have to choose from), but I passed on that. (any joke you have to explain is not a good one. See preceding sentence for perfect example.) The clock tower chimed seven times as I exited the polls, having handed my card to elderly gentlemen who seemed puzzled at what the yellow cards were for. Every other election I've voted in they had a box with a slit where the ballot or card goes, this time it was a Tupperware bowl (I don't know how to create the TM symbol so hopefully no legal issue there) guarded by a dozing man who may or may not have been an election official at the Lincoln v Douglas debates.

I hiked back down the road in the dark to my car and finally made my way home. Will my single vote make the difference in my state election? No. Will Grandpa know what to do with the yellow whatchamcallits; I hope so. I have become a bit of a cynic on a lot of things the last few years but voting is still one of the most wonderful experiences in life. Hope you voted... but only once.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

new piles

I used to be able to sit down and words would fall out upon the keyboard. Not works worthy of Kundera or Wolf but there would be some wit and flow. My wits have still flown with no return in sight. I start projects which never are completed. Even when I clean the office, a new pile of treasure/junk/stuff ends up in the middle of the room. Not my best day.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

post trip drip

Two weeks ago I finally made it out to Vail. It was business/fun, sadly more of the former and less of the later but it was still great and I can't wait to go back. While there I did manage to find time to do some Nordic skiing. As I was getting my skiis and boots a lady and her mother came to the counter. They had their equipment but needed the ticket to access the course. The lady mentioned her mother had turned 91 the previous day and wondered if that was occasion for a free pass. I piped in that if it wasn't I would buy her ticket as a belated birthday gift. They let her in for free. Even before she got out in the snow I would never have guessed her age. All of my grandparents died in their 70's and they all seemed so old at that stage. Of course I was a kid then so anyone over 40 seemed ancient. Still, my parents are both currently making their way into their upper 70's and neither of them look younger than this lady did. So off we all went, I in front and the birthday girl and her daughter close behind. After 100' I stopped to gaze around and take a few pictures before shuffling off again. After another 100' I paused again to wipe my sunglasses and adjust my cap. At that point I heard birthday girl behind me and watched her pass. For about 1/3 of the course they stayed ahead of me, slowing occasionally until I caught up. I wasn't sure if she needed a rest or if she was concerned about me being a novice to all things white and fluffy. (other than marshmallows of course). While everything around me was enveloped in white and looked amazing I think watching birthday girl pull ahead of me on skiis was what I'll remember most about that afternoon. As she and her daughter turned back she did stop to warn me about the back side of the trail. I appreciated it and wished her a happy birthday before heading onward.

The strangest moment of the trip was sitting in a Japanese restaurant in Vail, Co, with Appalachian music blaring overhead. The only bad moment was on the flight back. I had the couple behind me who were in denial over their need of a hearing aid. The row behind them was occupied with two infants, each trying to become the first to shatter glass. To my left were three rows of preschool kids, two of which had just learned to whistle. I would have paid anything for the headsets.

Back to realithy.


So, how long did your New Year's Resolution last?

Tuesday, January 1, 2008


I managed to start the year off with a ride on the trail. I'd like to think it was the constant headwind that made the pedaling back so difficult but my knees are telling me otherwise. The last two times I have been out riding or for long walks my knees have complained more than usual. With my sister's condition that terrible thought snuck into the back of my mind but truthfully it is because I have pretty much been a vegetable for the last three months.

Took the tree down and actually spent time putting things away in a more orderly fashion It was nice being able to stay home for a holiday and now at least two rooms of the house look semi-organized and clean. I even managed to toss out a few old things I'd been avoiding. Not that my pack rat days are over and I didn't even bother to consider that as a resolution for 2008. No, the thought that hit my head is that I want to canoe more. I didn't get into a boat last year.

Bowl games are upon us. That is one reason the cleaning went so slowly. I'll be having football withdrawals next week. But with the trip to the slopes planned (the first in nine years and very first time to one out west) I shouldn't have time to think of anything except dodging trees.

There is nothing any more profound about my life today than a year ago, but that doesn't matter. It will be time to reflect on the year 2008 before we know it. Enjoy it.