I was watching the evening news and thought I was having a stroke


In hindsight, perhaps a stroke would have been better.

I’ve been searching for a job for a number of reasons.

Among those reasons; I want to go back to school.

The goal is to get a degree that will make me more marketable in the workplace, feed my sense of personal accomplishment, and perhaps provide me with another career should the bottom fall out of whatever I end up doing between now and that as yet, undetermined future.

I think I may have waited too long to execute this educational goal. Here’s one of the reasons I’m concerned.

Ben Shapiro, an attorney, conservative, Orthodox Jew, author, journalist, & millennial, was scheduled to speak at CSULA

Author Ben Shapiro was invited to speak this afternoon at Cal State LA by the Young Americans for Freedom, which is a registered student organization. The event, “When Diversity Becomes a Problem,” was funded by the Associated Students, Inc., the student government.


Leading up to the event, there were a number of emails and social media posts that caused concern for the campus community. Given threats and expressions of fear, President William A. Covino proposed a rescheduled event that would be civil and inclusive, and in which Mr. Shapiro and speakers with other viewpoints could offer their perspectives in an organized forum.

“My decision was made in the interest of safety and security,” Covino said. “I am disappointed that Mr. Shapiro has not accepted my invitation to speak in such a forum. He has indicated that he will come to Cal State LA to speak today at the University-Student Union Theatre, where he was originally scheduled to deliver his talk,” Covino told the University community Thursday morning.

Covino added: “I strongly disagree with Mr. Shapiro’s views. But if Mr. Shapiro does appear, the University will allow him to speak. We will make every effort to ensure a climate of safety and security.”

A reporter filming the BLM crowd’s protest of Ben Shapiro was assaulted outside the venue. Attendees of Shapiro’s talk were forced to enter the venue via a back door because the school’s police wouldn’t clear the protestors from the main entrance.

Shapiro and the Attendees were forced to wait in the building until a police cordon could be established that allowed them to exit safely.


I can no longer clearly determine which is worse, Daesh (ISIS), The Taliban, Al Queada, Fundamentalist Christians, or Black Lives Matter.

I think I missed the opportunity to obtain higher education without becoming embroiled in some harebrained Social Justice Warrior bullshit.

If I’m going to pay for an education, I’m not interested in having to put up with a bunch of leftist crap. I wouldn’t mind IF both sides of an argument were explored with a purely academic objectiveness.


That is what I always thought education was supposed to do. I’ve believed that education presented you with the facts, and you were supposed to evaluate the merits of each side of an issue then make a decision based on your upbringing, personal beliefs, and personal philosophies.

I believed that as you learned more, and gained experience, that you could and would change your mind, and positions.

I never expected in my lifetime to see higher education perverted into an SJW exercise where the people on the side of “Right” would demand freedom as an oppressed group and at the same time prevent people with differing opinions from expressing those opinions.


I never in a million years expected to see in this country, MY Country, people accepting, even tacitly condoning the suppression of other people’s rights.

I expected to see us marching into a Star Trek like, egalitarian future.

Clearly I’m an idiot!

Now I’m considering really strange things. Do I want higher education? If I do, now I have to choose a school not only based on it’s academic qualities, but also on it’s political leanings. Should I try to determine if a school’s reputation for the antics of the SJW crowd will taint any degree I may graduate with?

The antics at CSULA last night were absolutely beyond belief. They’ve made me think that perhaps I’m right in considering questions other than the simple academic standing of a particular school. 

Legitiamately, I’m asking if I would even be physically safe on a college campus because my opinions do not line up with the SJW or BLM crowd.

Participation in classes, particularly those dealing with the Humanities would potentially expose my beliefs and therefore potentially compromise my personal safety leaving classes or being on a campus.

I suppose I can attend classes on-line.

Even then, would my grades be adversely affected by expressing dissenting opinions? Would I get a fair shake based strictly on the merit of my work?

Warp drive starship

I should have done the whole school thing a long time ago.

Yet again, this is one of those times when I wonder where the hell I am.

Maybe I did have a stroke, and I’m really in a coma.

Perhaps my area of study should be Physics.

With luck, I might be able to build the means to get off this planet of psychotic apes.

Meh. It could be worse


The other half came home with some serious junk food.

They are tasty and the other half justified the purchase by pointing out that these taste very good with berry flavored tea.

But the classic statement was;

Besides, they were on sale.

Which apparently justifies the purchase of four packages.

I was reminded about a friend of mine.

His other half loved bargains. Shoes, Jewelry, you name it, if something was on sale it was in their house shortly there after.

Everything was pretty much fine until…

Luxman d 08

What has since become known within the US Government and NATO as;

The Luxman Incident.

I vaguely recall waking up, the day after Thanksgiving at my friends home.  I staggered to the kitchen following the smell of awesome coffee.

Ahhhhhh Coffee!

Then I smelled that distinct smell that comes only from New Electronics. The unmistakable smell of rosin, and board cleaning solvent. Then I heard the rustling of styrofoam, and plastic bags.

There, in the living room, was my friend looking like a kid at Christmas in the middle of cables and packing materials.

It was 9 am.

My friend had showered, shaved, gotten dressed, left the house, driven to Van Nuys, made a purchase, driven home, re-entered the house without disturbing the dog or anyone else and was in the process of having a geek orgasm induced by a new electronic toy.

My friend didn’t roll around in the packing… His control was remarkable, (which is not to say he hadn’t done this prior to my entering the room.)

Alien by buchemi

Enjoying my coffee, I was looking forward to watching Alien on this brand new LaserDisc player, later in the afternoon. (It’s a Thanksgiving or day after Thanksgiving tradition, leave it at that.)

At which point… His other half came in and frankly lost it.

At the time, I wondered if I was watching Alien live!

I headed for another cup of coffee. I was not wanting to be drawn into this under any circumstances. Best to not be present.  My friends other half looked at me “Did YOU know he was going to buy this?”

“Uh Nope… where’s the coffee? I’m going to put on another pot,” continuing to the relative safety of the kitchen.

At which point I don’t remember too much. I do recall the sound of fingernails on a chalkboard for about 30 minutes then it got quiet.

A few moments of silence and the opening sound effects of the score of Alien could be heard from the living room.

I looked around the corner. That now infamous opening line appeared on the screen.

In space, no-one can hear you scream.

Clearly a vacuum had opened somewhere between the front of the house and the rear of the house. I knew no-one had been “spaced” but there was some serious space in that house for the next day or so. I don’t think they spoke the rest of the weekend.

It wasn’t funny then.

Many years have passed, and I think it’s funnier than hell now. My friend may not think so but I hope he takes it good-naturedly.

Of course this is the same friend that gave me the single most EPIC ass chewing I’ve ever received. I deserved every word of it. I was an asshole!

I’m hoping that I’m not cruising for another EPIC ass chewing with this post.

It’s strange how memories are linked in our heads.

My other half saying “They were on sale,” as I was trying to rearrange the pantry to accept a 3 cubic foot block of cookies, put a smile on my face and allowed me to relive that “Black Friday”.

My friend has a much lovelier person as his wife now. She’s awesome, I genuinely like and respect her. She brings out the best in him, and the imp in me.

(I love trying to shock her and watching her reboot for just an instant when she processes that I really did say what she thought, but never imagined, I’d say. In truth because she’s made my friend happy and truly loves him, well don’t tell her, but I’d do anything in my power for her.)

I’ll throw myself on her mercy if he’s really mad at me.

I should point out that I’ll buy her mercy if necessary with tales of a blue Mustang, a green Monza and a certain church parking lot!

It pays to be a very old friend to someone, you know literally ALL their dirt.

Ahhh Chooo!

What was I saying? What Mustang, I’m not a church going person, what’s a Monza? I’m so old my memory fails at the most inopportune moments.

Cookies or over priced bedazzled sweat shirts.

I’ll take the cookies and funny memories.

Strange Tears

I’m a mean hard bastard.

I’ve been that way all my life. Which is why I find myself in this very strange place.


I feel like my world is slipping away.

It was David Bowie’s passing that popped the bubble for me. Or maybe it was a combination of seeing Leonard Nimoy in Star Trek Into Darkness and Bowie’s passing that managed to pound through my defenses.

Th 1These entertainers are people I’ve never met, so it shouldn’t be personal.  But they are touchstones in my life. Their loss is a sign of unrelenting change.

I heard the strains of Space Oddity on the radio this morning and was suddenly singing along & crying. It was weird.

Unintentionally, I started tallying the losses in my personal life.

I’ve seen my share of death. In the ‘80s and ‘90s the tally increased weekly. After a while I stopped going to funerals. It wasn’t because I didn’t care about or want to remember those folks. It was that I couldn’t bear any more losses.

61260414Time is catching up with me.

I know in the not too distant future I’m going to have to bear more losses. The numbers are probably going to increase faster too.

Folks in my family are getting up there in years. I have friends who aren’t in the best of health and while I love them, time and distance have made us into very different people.

You see, time takes its toll on relationships too.

Why am I crying? Even hard assed warriors cry. I’m not ashamed of my tears.

The catalyst of music or movie is one thing, that’s the trigger.  What is the underlying cause of my tears right now?

Is it that I’m not as good as surfing the winds of change as I once was? Is it sadness that some days I feel like a dinosaur watching the last sunset? Is it fear of being left all alone?

I know these feelings aren’t unique.

There are books and plays, movies and TV shows that have explored these feelings.

Dracula, Dr. Who, and at least one book by Heinlein pop into my head instantly. These stories ask the question:

If you could be immortal would you?

Could you bear the mounting losses while continuing to walk endlessly into the future?

How long before the transient nature of life made you a monster, disconnected from all the things that make us human? Would you, after a few hundred years, stop being human because you can no longer keep count of those you’ve loved and lost.

How long until the voices, faces and lives become background noise, and your interaction with them is limited to nothing more than furthering your agenda? You agenda would likely become an agenda, the normal lived couldn’t see and one in which their life or death is but a drip from a leaky faucet.


Perhaps it’s normal to think of these things at points in your life. We know we’re mortal, we know we’ll end.

Maybe the lesson is to just cry.

Maybe from time to time, we should let it all out, not hold anything back, and don’t dwell on it.

When our tears have finished, then we’re supposed to pick up the less brittle pieces of ourselves and move on with grace earned by our successes, failures, and even our tallied losses from years of living.

Like everyone else, I’m clueless. I can tell you this;

Time keeps moving on and so probably should we.

The annual shopping trip…

NGWOW I needed that!

For many years now, a very good friend and I have been having an annual Christmas expedition.  This year getting away from the house was a welcome and much needed relief.

Somehow our once a year trip always goes off without a hitch.  This year no exception. As in the past several expeditions, all our shopping is accomplished in a single day. The tradition is to fortify ourselves with a little alcohol, a good lunch then shop. Then snacks, then more shopping then yet more shopping and the whole time we’re laughing and enjoying our time together.

This year my friend went above and beyond the call of duty and were it not for his expert driving I would probably have given up and gone home.  There were way too many cars, way too much busyness, and too dang few parking spots.

I don’t know if my friend knows how much I appreciate his efforts yesterday, but he and his other half deserve a round of applause and my profound and deep thanks for helping to make a wonderful Christmas for me.

Driving home I had a smile on my face that couldn’t be jackhammered off my face. I’m still smiling and it’s not from Alcohol It’s from joy.  I had such a good time this year that I’m looking forward to next year. My friend probably cringed at that, because it means putting up the Christmas tree. (But you do such a beautiful tree, and I’ve got a couple of laser pointers that might help!)

I can tell you, absolutely nothing beats love, kindness, and having truly outstanding friends. Except perhaps spending a day laughing your ass off with them.

I hope each of you has equally awesome people in your lives.

While writing another piece…

I got to thinking about the internet and wondering about it’s effects on the world.  The piece in question was about Trump calling for us to cut the internet going into ISIS controlled areas.

1450552308_full.jpegAs I thought about it I wondered if you were to disconnect ISIS, would young internet addicted people from the West continue to join their ranks?

If messages of radicalization weren’t regular, would the radicalism simply flame out?

This line of thinking has caused me to wonder, “Is the internet with it’s ability to instantly show the disparity between cultures and living conditions actually the source of the problem?”

When the third world can see the first world through the window of technology, does that engender social unrest, or even civil war? Desire and greed are natural human emotions.

Taking someone from the poorest slum in Brazil to Rodeo Drive and handing them $50 would by most measures be considered cruel. They could window shop all they wanted but never purchase any of the bright shiny baubles.

Gene Roddenberry explored these questions a bit in StarTrek. The Prime Directive wasn’t about protecting The Federation, it was about protecting less advanced cultures.

I suspect his thought on the matter may have been based in the cargo cults that sprang up during and after World War II.

Essentially you had an extremely disruptive event where native people were confronted with technology that was for all intents magic to them.

Items of great value were given to the locals by visitors descending from the sky. These items held little value to the visitors but took on great value and importance in the lives of the natives.

Then one day the visitors left. Taking with them the source of new gifts and wealth. So the natives built effigies of planes, hoping to entice the visitors into coming back.

It reads like the plot of an Ancient Aliens show but it happened.

Maybe the question is; “Have we technocrats been inadvertently cruel and thoughtless by bringing the internet to all parts of the world? Are we essentially saying ‘See, we have all this and you can’t?’

We talk about the disruptive technologies that appear in our society and their effects. What effect do these disruptive technologies have on third world societies?

As an experiment we could shut down those parts of the internet that service Daesh then see what happens. If their violence ceases to spread then we might be on the right track.

These are questions I think are worth answering.

Fear not!

I’m not becoming a social justice warrior. I’ve already been there, done that, and donated the T-Shirt to the preservation of female unicorns society. They used it to light the bonfire that killed the last male unicorn. Now they’re asking for donations funding recombinant DNA research to preserve the unicorns!

This was published via Bing

All I can say is you have got to be fucking kidding me.

I worry about typos and poorly written sentences in this blog. It may not show, but I actually do worry about it.

I read and re-read what I’m writing in a genuine attempt to avoid assaulting you, the reader, with brain damaging prose.

Then I ran across this from a News aggregation site like Bing and thought “OK after this, I don’t need to be so worried about it any more.”

There was loads of speak about how Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL Pay has stumbled, if not utterly failed. Adoption rates are growing, still Pay has not quite ushered in the long run of physical wallets in that many thought it will. However let me make the case for a 2nd in that Apple Pay is not lifeless still, and even close, still slightly has just gotten an early begin to an extended mobile payments race in that is about to heat up. Check out the chart below, which shows the transaction value of proximity mobile payments over the subsequent few years of time of time. The Motley Fool Proximity mobile payments pertain to point-of-sale purchases where an individual makes use of their smartphone (or a pill, in the event in that they decide to rise above social norms) to buy an item. These differ from different mobile payments & mobile commerce where a user sits on the sofa & orders a Snuggie via smartphone or pill. The chart shows in that the proximity transactional value will double this yr, in comparison with last yr, after which triple in 2016. In accordance to eMarketer, the improve will come from a rise within the assortment of users tapping in to mobile payment systems and much more adoption from merchants. …
– via Las Vegas Nv Blog

For God’s sake!

This reads like something from an elementary school student. How the hell does something this badly written end up being nationally published?

Another question is how do I get paid to publish horrifically badly written articles?