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Monday, February 29, 2016


A re-run from 2013

At my age I have forgotten way more than I have ever learned and I think the ratio of forgotten to learned is increasing. 

Why do we need to learn stuff that we probably will never use?  This is a question I ask myself today especially with regards to new technology.  It is a question virtually every teenager asks his parents while struggling with plain geometry, physics or Spanish 1. 

The standard parental answer is

1.    You don’t know yet what you will need to know at your age.

2.    Learning these things teaches you how to think.

Both of these answers will not register with your teenager.

My son played baseball in high school.  The field they played on was a perfect square.  It was 300 feet down each foul line and therefore 300 feet from either foul pole to dead center field.  The distance to centerfield was listed as 350 feet.  Many a long fly ball to dead center failed to reach the fence.  The players on the team were convinced dead center was deeper than 350 feet.  The coach said no.

When my son mentioned this to me my immediate response was,
I thought you said you would never use anything you learned in geometry.”


“Draw a line from home plate to center field.  You have a right triangle.  The distance down the right field line (a) is 300 feet.  The distance from the right field foul pole to dead center (b) is the same as the distance from home to the left field foul pole 300 feet.  The distance of the line from home to dead center (c) can be determined by that formula you thought you would never use: a2 + b2 = c2.  So 90000 + 90000 = 180000 and the square root of 180000 is about 424 feet.  Tell your coach the distance to dead center based on the formula a2 + b2 = c2.” is 424 feet not 350 feet.”

The next day I asked my son
“Is the coach going to change the center field marker to 424 feet?”


“Why not?”

“He says he don’t care about no a2 + b2 = c2.  If the sign says it is 350 feet to dead center then it is 350 feet to dead center.”

“Well” I told him, “Now in addition to finding out that you can actually use what you learn in school, your coach has demonstrated why it is also important to  learn how to think.”     

Sunday, February 28, 2016



It is time again for

This week’s stupid headlines and my stupider, sometimes sophomoric comments.  


Meteorologist busted for growing marijuana plants – There’s a high  coming down from the north which is expected to meet with a high coming up from the south, and when they meet it’s like going to be like wild.

Wrestler Joey Ryan Proposes to Girlfriend Mid-Match He didn’t just put a ring on it, he first put her in the ring.

Hillary Clinton: 'I don't believe I have ever lied’ – At least to the best of my recollection, I don’t think I have lied, I don’t remember ever lying…no, I have never lied, at least not that I am aware of…


She's recycling carbon dioxide with hopes of reducing oil dependence – Finally, instead of scaring everyone into feeling guilty for heating their homes and driving their cars, the real hope is in smart people inventing better stuff!

Back to Stupid Headlines

Georgia Supreme Court hears KKK bid to 'Adopt-A-Highway' – KKK promises their road will have no black-ice (say it fast.)

Hitler Had 'Tiny' Penis, Historians Claim – Turns out the dictator was a big dick, but his tator was a tot?

4-year-old sentenced to life in prison for murder was error, Egyptian military says – Life for a four year old was determined to be too long, so the sentence was shortened to 75 years.

A record number of Americans applied to become NASA astronautsI think this happens every election year.

Taylor Swift caught grooming herself at Grammys – For the life of me I have no idea why this is a headline and I could care less what anyone does when they visit with Grandma.

British lawmakers object to NFL's Redskins playing in London under current name –  Apparently they are not offended by these Nicknames of Great Britain sports teams: Urchins/Yellows/Little Reds/Lilywhites/Red Rebels/Nomads/Gunners/Yellamen/Romans/Nailers/Chocolate Men/Chicks/Wasps/Red Devils/)

Man Busted for Ferris Wheel Sex Was in Vegas to Marry – I’m not a prude, but sex with a Ferris Wheel?

Ohio police hunt for bald man in string of Rogaine thefts – If that crap works, they’d better find him quick.

Doctors warn of demand for 'vaginal seeding' – If you can grow them, you bet there will be a big demand.

Ham thief leaves trail of fat behind him, leading cops to his front door – I guess he wanted to be sure he could find the place again to steal more ham.

Canadian man fined for smuggling 38 turtles in his pants – I’m guessing they were not snapping turtles!


Come back next week for more:


Saturday, February 27, 2016


Another cranky opinion for


The following is the opinion of a cranky old man who may or may not be opining with tongue in cheek.  Opposing opinions are welcome, but don’t get too exercised about it…it’s just a blog folks.  Please, as always no name calling, and that means you, you big stupid-head!

Many politicians today often repeat a mantra on taxes that we need to give a break to “Hard Working Americans”.   Apparently families that do not work hard do not need tax relief. 

Talk about class warfare.  If you don’t work hard you are expected to pay more in taxes than those that work hard.

I had an Uncle who owned his own business.  He made a lot of money, but then from what I could see, he worked his ass off.   He was at his business at 6 am and didn’t leave until 8 pm.  He worked many weekends and seldom took a vacation.  When he was at home he stressed over his business and often stayed up late worrying.  His family life suffered because he worked so hard and he didn’t spend as much time doing family things as he would have liked.  He died from a heart attack at age of 50.  Doctors attributed it to stress.  “He worked himself to death.”

But he did die very wealthy.  I’m not sure if people like my uncle would be taxed more under regulations proposed by many of today’s politicians.  He was wealthy, but he also worked harder than anyone I have ever known.  He was a "Hardworking American." 

My neighbor is a toll taker for the New Jersey Turnpike.   He does not make a lot of money.  He brags to me how he only works eight hours a day but with union concessions for lunch and coffee breaks it is really more like six hours a day.  If he works nights, weekends or holidays he gets paid extra.  He tells me that when it is slow he listens to books on tape, or talks on the phone.  He brags that his job is not very hard.  It may be boring he says, “But when I get home I don’t take my job with me.  I sleep well at night and I have time to spend with the wife and kids.”  Seems to me he is not a hard worker.  Perhaps we should tax him more.

Conservative politicians tell us that taxing the wealthy will be a disincentive to work and may actually bring less revenue to government coffers.  Maybe we should not raise taxes on the wealthy, maybe we should raise taxes on people who do not work hard.  This would be an incentive for lazy, less productive people to work harder and make more money which will make the country more productive and raise the standards of living for everyone. If Government in it’s infinite wisdom determines you do not work very hard in your job, you should pay more to help out those whose life suffers because they work so hard.

Hey, if you disagree, don’t get angry with me; blame the politicians who want to give a tax break to “Hard Working Americans.”

The preceding was the opinion of a cranky old man and not necessarily that of management…Mrs. Cranky.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Yoo Hoo Brew Ha Ha

Yoo Hoo Brew Ha Ha

One of the things about marriage that baffles me is how each spouse wants small tasks preformed exactly as they would do them.  Mrs. C is particularly guilty of this infraction.   If I brush my teeth up and down, she insists I should back and forth it.  No matter how I load the dishwasher it is the wrong way.  I fluff my pillows wrong; I turn the lights on too high…unless I turn them on too low.  I channel surf wrong and I watch the wrong shows, even when she is not watching TV.

Wrong, btw, is anything not how she would do it.  When confronted with the error of my ways I always ask her how does she think I survive when she is not around.   She always responds back, “I have no idea!”

Today we were both in the kitchen, never a good thing as there are so many things to do “wrong” in the kitchen.  She asked,

“Can you reach in the fridge and get me a Yoo Hoo.”

I often have trouble finding things in the fridge, but I knew where the Yoo Hoo was because I saw some of those little sippy boxes in the vegetable drawer just the other day (I agree…I didn’t put them there.)  As I pulled out the drawer and reached for a box,

“Why are you getting the box from there, there are several boxes on the shelf right at eye level?”

“Is there a difference?”

“The Yoo Hoo’s on the shelf are for now, they are easy to reach, the Yoo Hoo’s in the drawer are back up Yoo Hoo’s.”

I handed her the “drawer” Yoo Hoo.  “This Yoo Hoo is just as good, and I didn’t see the others.”

“Maybe, but it is still the wrong Yoo Hoo; and how can you not see the eye level boxes?”

“You are a pip!”

As she poked the straw in the box I had to comment on how she drank the Yoo Hoo.

“Don’t sip, you never get all the drink out of the box, you lose air pressure and you cannot suck the last bit of Yoo Hoo.  You should blow air into the box, and then the Yoo Hoo just flows on its own up the straw and you get all of it with no effort.”

“I tilt it back and around so the remaining drink is in the corner and it is easy to get it.”

“You do it wrong!”

“You’re a JERK!”

“When you throw it away, push the straw in and crumble the box up so it takes less room in the garbage.”

“I don’t crumble it, I undo the flaps and it flattens out, taking up less room than crumbling.”

“That’s ridiculous!”

“Once again, you’re a JERK!”

Actually her way to toss the box is better, but she drinks the Yoo Hoo wrong.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Do I have a post today?

Do I have a post today?

Do I ask myself a question and then answer it? No.  Do I find it really annoying when people do this? Yes.

Is it literally annoying when people do this? Yes.  Is using literally all the time annoying?  Absolutely.

Do I think pizza is awesome? No.  Do I like pizza? Yes, but it is not awesome…the Grand Canyon is awesome, pizza is good.  Does using the word awesome all the time bother me?  Yes. 

How about epic? Also abused.

Am I an expert on the use of the English language?  No.  Am I qualified to comment on the latest trends in the English language?  No. 

Do I give a damn? Hell to the no!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

The Cranky Cheapskate

The Cranky Cheapskate
I am a cheapskate.  I admit it. Guilty.  Mea Culpa.   eap with a capital CH!

How cheap am I?

When I was seven years old, I had managed to save $3.50.  I was going to put it in the bank. 

(In those days the local bank came to school and everyone in first grade opened an account with a dollar.  We all had bank books, learned about interest and even got a little canvas bank bag for bringing in deposit loot.)

Anyway, I was going to deposit this $3.50 when I spied with my little eye in the toy store window, a beautiful realistic looking cap rifle.  I really wanted that rifle.  My mom advised me that it was my money, that I should bank it, but if “You really want the cap rifle…”

I bought the cap rifle.  I liked the cap rifle and got hours of play time out of that rifle for about a month.  I don’t know what happened to the toy gun.  It didn’t break and I didn’t lose it, I guess I just out grew it.

Here is where I demonstrate just how cheap I am.  For years, sixty-three at this point to be exact, I have lamented spending that $3.50.  I should have saved it.

They say that money conservatively invested and diversified should, on average, double every seven years.  In sixty-three years, that $3.50 would have doubled nine times.  Three dollars and fifty cents doubled nine times equals $1,792.

Currently I want to upgrade my guitar to this:

 Martin 000-17sm sold at my local Guitar Store at $1,750.

Coincidence? I think not.

If only I had banked that $3.50 instead of splurging on a toy those many years ago when I wasn’t so cheap.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016



Anita @ Just Curious  sparked this memory; I’m not sure if I should thank her or not.

OK, the title…This post is about a “friend” I once had who was a salesman in the shipping industry.  As you will see, he was not my most favorite person.  If you are talking to anyone in the Navy or the shipping industry and refer to their ships as a boat you will be corrected almost instantaneously.

“So, how big is your boat?”


Like that.

I used to refer to this particular individual as a “Boathead.”


Boathead was the husband of a vague friend of my first wife.  He came to find out that I drove to the train station every morning and he had a similar commute.  Because of our wives vague friendship, I somehow became Boathead’s personal chauffeur.

The wives seemed to think this was a good idea.  Boathead needed a ride, I was going to the station everyday anyway, and we could keep each other company.

My wife did not get that commuting time is time to read the paper, nap, or just get all your cranky out so you can be a human being at work.

Boathead was a pain in the ass.  He complained about my beat-up unreliable VW bug on the way to the train, he would not shut up on the train, and he called every evening to coordinate our train schedule for his ride home, a schedule often not to my liking.

“I’m running a little late tonight, you don’t mind do you?”

Fucking Boathead!

Boathead was a salesman.  His day was basically taking customers to lunch and kissing ass for their business.  On the way home I had to listen to what he had for lunch, all paid for on his “Business card” like he was such a big shot.  I so wanted to just look him in the eye and say,

“How very impressive, but I’d like to read the paper, so FUCK YOU and your hotshot expense account…Oh and by the way does that expense account credit card work at the gas station on the way home, or for the monthly parking at the train station?”

Believe it or not, I was too nice.  I said “um hum” about eighty-seven times a day.

Interestingly enough, when I had something to talk about, he would change the subject to his own big shot life faster then he would say “Ship” if I said boat.

Fucking Boathead.

Somewhere along the line after about two years of this delightful commuting arrangement we parted ways.  I don’t remember what it was, a change of schedule or change of jobs I don’t remember.  I do remember not missing his company.

I did bump into him one day at a local convenience store.  We went through the usual small talk.  Well he talked, I um hummed a lot.  I mentioned that I had moved, (I had upgraded to a new neighborhood, one more hoity toity than his ride grubbing, chump ass, hotshot expense account, crappy house.)

Always the big shot he responded,

“Really!  I wish I had known, I’m looking to buy a rental house as an investment.  I could have bought your house.”

Sure, what was he going to do, buy a second house with his expense account?  Maybe first he should buy a hoopty to get to the train station.

Anyway I just um hummed him one last time and said good bye to his hot shot ass.

Fucking Boathead.

* You get the same kind of instant response (plus a short rhyme) if you refer to a rifle as a gun when talking to anyone who was ever in the Army.

Sunday, February 21, 2016



Hop in the way-back machine, Sherman, this re-run is from January, 2012

Labyrinth - Labyrinth is a game of physical skill consisting of a box with a maze on top with holes, and a steel marble. The object of the game is to try and tilt the playfield to guide the marble to the end of the maze, without letting it fall into any of the holes. The game features a suspended maze surface that rotates on two axes, each of which is controlled by a knob.

The other day while surfing the net, I saw a picture of this game.  LABYRINTH. I was never very good at ping pong.  I could never put the bee bees in the holes of those stupid Cracker Jack puzzles.  It took me years to get a single side of the Rubik’s Cube all yellow.  

I was a master at Labyrinth.  

Pop brought this game home Christmas 1956.  You had to maneuver a steel ball past 60 holes in a maze by tilting two axes of the surface, controlled by two knobs. We had no computers, no PlayStation or Game Boys. Labyrinth was our obsession.    

It took my two brothers and me a week to get past the fourth hole.  Zipping through 9-10 took another week to master.  Getting by 25 was a bitch, and hole 43 took everyone out for at least a month.  By the spring my brothers and I all managed to get that ball consistently to the end…60.  

My brothers tired of the game.  At only 10 years old I was not so easily bored.

Getting to 60 was not enough; I had to take that ball back to zero.  Then back to 60 again.  The record became 60 and back, six times, finally crapping out on the way back the seventh time at 43.  Mastering the game to 60 and back was not the end of the game. I went for a greater challenge.  I went for the gold.  I started playing Labyrinth by controlling the knobs with my feet!

It was like starting all over again with the same stumbling blocks, hole 4 then 9-10, 25 and the ever difficult hole 43.  After six weeks I was astonishing my older brothers with a record run of 60 and back, 60 and back, and out at hole 25 on the attempted third leg.  The game mastered, I finally bored of the sport.

I never played again nor did I even see the game until my freshman year at college.  Professors at school often rented out rooms for student’s dates on big weekends (My school, Lafayette, was an all male school.)  When dropping off a date at an English professor’s home one weekend I saw the Labyrinth game on a living room table.

“Wow, I haven’t seen one of those in years!”

The professor related as to how the record in his family was maneuvering the ball all the way to the 25th hole.

“You want to try it?”

“It’s been years, but sure.”

I slid behind the maze-game and in four minutes, on my first try, I took the steel ball to 60 and back as if I had never stopped playing the game.

“Holy Crap!  How did you do that?”

“Just lucky I guess.”

I decided not to tell him that I used to do it with my feet.


Imagine that!
It is time again for


 This week’s stupid headlines and my stupider, sometimes sophomoric comments.  

Two people walking across Golden Gate Bridge hit by blow darts – President Obama calls for stricter blow dart control.

Lovelorn elephant takes out his rage on more than a dozen cars – The report doesn’t say where this happened but I think it was Tuscaloosa.*

Tom Brady boasts that he is not one of the best QBs ever – Finally something I have in common with Tom Brady.

Army's runaway blimp flew for hours due to missing batteries – Blimp is part of a 2.8 billion dollar program.  I think they should have made the program for 2.8 billion 2 dollars 75 cents and put some batteries in the dang thing.

Teen hands out 900 flowers to girls at school – After school the boys all beat the crap out of him.**

Australia police seize $900M worth of meth hidden in bra inserts – Ta ta, you be busted, both of you going to the holding pen, cell block DD.

What caused this weird crack to appear in Michigan? – Plumbers convention?

If you're obese, distances actually look further – It’s about a mile down the road, but with the Fat Distance Factor it feels like a mile and a half.

Lawmaker's bill would require men to get wife's permission for Viagra – I just sold all my stock in Pfizer.  I was going to take a short position, but I need my wife’s permission.

Gastric reflux drugs may be tied to dementia risk – Two words…BAKING SODA!!

Florida man dies in meth-lab explosion after lighting farts on fire – There was no meth-aide for his flatulence.

Drunk Monkey Attacks Bar Patrons with Knife – This is why I never visit establishments that do not have a two drink monkey limit.

Palestinian leader gives wife-beating tips on Gaza TV – So as to not insult the “Religion of Peace” and have a fatwa issued on me, I have no comment.

Mailman says turkeys trapped him in his truck - “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” It don’t say nothing about no TURKEYS!
*That was for Hilary
**I have no idea why I find that funny.


Come back next week for more:


Saturday, February 20, 2016

Bad Behavior is in the eye of the media

Bad Behavior is in the eye of the media

A cranky opinion for


The following is the opinion of a cranky old man with little knowledge of the subject opined.   Opposing views are welcome, but are wrong.  As always, please, no name calling, and that means you, you big stupid head!

Bill Cosby apparently used drugs to date rape women.  Because of his wealth, power and public persona, it took years for women to step forward and accuse him of being the despicable abuser that he apparently is.  I didn’t believe it at first; I had been a big Cosby fan since his first comedy album.  He has somehow avoided any repercussions for his behavior.

Michael Jackson had an unhealthy affinity for young boys.  Several accused him of sexual abuse and he paid several off to say nothing.   Because of his wealth, power, and public persona, it took years before his perversion saw the light of day, and many still refuse to accept it.  He was never taken to task for his child abuse.  When he passed away, the world mourned.

Bill Clinton has been accused of several rapes, and of intimidating his victims to keep them silent.  Because of his wealth, power, public persona, and political expediency he has never been held accountable, and is in fact a darling of the woman’s rights movement.  He admitted to taking sexual advantage of a young intern.  If he was a CEO of a major corporation he would have been dismissed.  Instead he had his wrist slapped and he showed zero remorse.*

Hillary Clinton knew of her husband’s brutality and predilection for sexual abuse.  Because of his wealth, power, public persona, and political expediency she has remained silent and has not been held accountable for her silence or her hand in stemming the accusations through intimidation and slander.**

Woody Allen took advantage of his seventeen year old adopted daughter, even married her, and has been accused of inappropriate behavior with others.  Because of his wealth, power and public persona, he is still a respected movie writer, producer and director.

OJ Simpson almost decapitated two people, but he was wealthy, famous, and charming, so he was judged not guilty regardless of overwhelming evidence along with his threat of suicide and attempted escape.

Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton among others were made famous and established careers after releasing sex tapes on the internet.  They have throngs of supporters.  They are also children of privilege.  They are judged with different standards.

Pee Wee Herman is a seemingly harmless and a fairly talented actor/comedian who was caught diddling himself in an XXX movie theater.  His career was basically ruined for years because he was not wealthy enough, or powerful enough to have the charges buried.  He was just famous enough to have this indiscretion made public.  I do not condone his behavior, but it was an XXX movie…DUH!  I’ll wager there are still people doing the same thing today in their own homes who go to work the next morning and do not have their career ruined.

Martha Stewart is wealthy and liked by many, but there are also many who resent her for her “prissy, proper, blue nose” persona and when she was caught for a minor Wall Street indiscretion which saved her almost $80,000 she was sent to jail for insider trading.

Oprah Winfrey is wealthy, talented, adored by millions and feared by many because of her media power.  Oprah bought ten percent of Weight Watchers stock and on the next day announced that she had given the company the right to use her name, image, likeness and endorsement for the company.  I'm not a lawyer, but that sounds like insider trading to me.  Oprah made over 60 million dollars in one day; apparently if you are Oprah that is perfectly legal.  I know if I had sold stock in Weight Watchers to Oprah I would be pissed. 

Apparently if you are wealthy, talented, or charming or if the world just likes you, you can get away with almost anything.  If you are not wealthy, have no power or are unlikable you better watch your step.

The preceding was the opinion of a cranky old man and not necessarily that of management…Mrs. Cranky.

Oprah, if by some crazy reason you read this, I was only kidding.
*Try as I might to feel differently, I still kinda like President Clinton.
**I have no trouble not liking Hillary, she s not as charming as Bill.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

IF I had Hair I’d be Bald

IF I had Hair I’d be Bald

Sometimes computers just piss me off.  I love computers, don’t get me wrong; I could never go back to a world of longhand, no spell check and reading stuff in really small print.  I love Google and Facebook and all that stuff. 

My experiences with computers which is the tin foil on my fillings, is losing connectivity and my mystery keyboard.

With losing connectivity at inopportune times and being victim of unwanted keyboard accidents, if I wasn’t bald already, I would have just pulled all my hair out anyway. (That explains the title…wait, don’t go!)

My computer is not directly connected to anything, it receives its signal wifially (it’s a word now; I just added it to dictionary.)  I wouldn’t think you could connect to the internet without physically connecting to anything, but you can…most of the time.  Most of the time does not included when you are playing on-line poker and you just flopped a full house against a flush.  The Flush puts you all-in and as you gleefully call, BING, you get that swirly thing that does not stop swirling until the game decides you and your winning full house have just folded.

I like to leave comments on various posts I read, and from time to time a comment is rather long.  When my connection fails for a second or two my long comment disappears.  It often disappears as I am reaching for the “send” key. 

I find myself yanking imaginary hair out of my challenged scalp.

Even more frustrating is the mystery keyboard.  I often accidentally hit an unknown combination of keys which apparently has been coded to do unusual stuff to my screen and my cursor.  Am I the only one who has written several hundred words of a post only to look up and find that somewhere along the line my cursor moved to a different part of my screen and I have been typing over hard won text? 

I almost blew my brains out over this once until I accidentally hit “ctrl z” and I only lost the new text which was replacing the old text.

Sometimes I accidentally hit a strange combination of keys and shit just goes away!  More fake hair pulling.

Yesterday I accidentally hit a strange combination of keys and my entire text was painted.  I am sometimes challenged in painting my text to copy to Blogger.  This key combination that I accidentally hit might be very helpful.  I have no idea what that combination was.

I hate those quick and easy key stroke short cuts!  They are more trouble than they are worth and it is impossible to figure out how to use them.

Alright, I’m done; I got that out of my system. 

I’m just going to (ctrl s) this, (ctrl c) it, and (ctrl v) it to Blogger.