Smitty’s Loose Change #12

Smitty's Loose Change

We (the wife) have acquired a new medical specialist, a Physiatrist (fizz-eye-aah-tryst). This is a term invented by another doctor in 1957. It originally was an alternative to physician, or GP, to distinguish from the growing horde of specialists. Over the ensuing 60 years though, it has come to refer to a doctor who specializes in pain management and control.

He recommends and co-ordinates with chiropractors, osteopaths, massage therapists, and physiotherapists. He can prescribe specific medications, but usually leaves it to the patient and their GP. He can recommend exercises for specific muscle groups, for home, gym or physio sessions. As a last resort, he is trained and authorized to administer injections of analgesics or cortisones.

His clinic is not – and may never be – authorized to administer the long-term, IV-drip, pain-med infusions that I drive the daughter 60 miles every 8/9 weeks to get.

***

I recently got a phone call from a polling firm, working on behalf of my electricity supplier, Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro. While seeming simple, the questions were actually rather confusing. They wanted to know why I had chosen K/W Hydro, and what it would take for me to recommend them to another potential user.

They asked about draws, perhaps one or more customers could have their monthly charge written off. The finances are a closed system. It takes X amount of money to purchase and distribute power. If one (or more) people don’t have to pay, then the rest of us all have to pay a bit more. I don’t want to pay any extra, and, if I were to win, I’d feel guilty about the rest paying more.

Then they asked about rebates. If they can afford to give rebates, then they’re overcharging us. The final suggestion was to donate money to charity. It’s a feel-good idea, but, either they’re overcharging, or we’re all going to pay more, to finance that scheme.

I don’t know what it’s like where you live, but the truly bizarre thing about all this is that they hold a monopoly. No other power-supply company can operate in this district. We have Hobson’s choice – take it, or else. The only other options are to freeze in the dark, or buy a Honda generator at Home Despot. And, my bill went up to help pay for this useless survey.

***

I’ve been translating German names again. Some of them give cause for wonder/amusement.
Einwechter = one – of a half. One what?? Of a half of what? I suppose the Germans know.
Kieswetter = cheese weather – which is a sky overcast with small, dark, chunky clouds that resemble cheese curds. How in Hell you get named after rain clouds, I don’t know. No wonder these people tried to conquer Europe – Twice

Kieswetter

***

Arbitrary

How you’ve heard it: “His bookshelves are organized in a totally arbitrary way. “What it means: Random, erratic, unpredictable, not based on coherent logic whatsoever.

It may be unpredictable to you. It may appear erratic, but it is not random! ‘Arbitrary’ means selected, or chosen. The books on the shelf may be arranged by size, by color, by the number of pages, or even in reverse alphabetical order of the authors’ first names. You may not see the order. You may not agree with the logic, but the owner arbitrarily chose it. He may even have chosen random.

***

My neurologist, the guy who probably saved my sight – the doctor who was willing to throw me in the trunk of his car and drive me 60 miles to a hospital specializing in eye health – has been charged with 34 counts of sexual harassment, and had his medical license revoked. I did not see that coming.

***

We recently survived another Federal election. One of the son’s co-workers asked him – based on the number of lawn signs – who he felt would be the winner in our neighborhood. The son replied that it looked like Re/Max Realty was out ahead, with Century 21 close behind. The son held out hope for a young upstart named Butter Tart Festival, holding a revival meeting at a local tourist trap. The worker protested, “Aren’t you ever serious?” “Sometimes.” “See, there you go again.” Ya just can’t win.

 

Smitty’s Loose Change #8

BC Mountie

How the Media – and the Police – Hell, just about everybody – lies to you

“A traffic stop in Calgary yielded drugs and several weapons, including a semi-automatic submachine gun.”

This is where I say….  Cat <-> Dog, Wet <-> Dry, Day <-> Night.  A semi-automatic weapon fires once each time the trigger is pulled.  A ‘submachine gun’ is fully automatic, capable of rapidly firing through a far larger ammunition magazine.  It’s one or the other.  It can’t be both – says the guy who invented it, and the word.

Police issue statements like this to appear to be protecting the public – from dangers that don’t necessarily exist.  Newspapers cynically use headlines like this to sell papers!  Don’t you feel safe?  It’s a good thing that liars don’t give off radiation, or we’d all glow in the dark.

***

In Ford though, they see a my-road-or-the-highway politician…. I realize that the subtle, nuanced, ABAB rhyme scheme of, My way, or the Highway, can be a bit difficult for a columnist from Toronto’s poshest newspaper to detect but, come down from your ivory tower, and listen to how ‘the little people’ in the street actually speak, and how they view their political representative, before you disparage him.
BTW:  He got elected.

***

There is none so blind as he who will not see.

(Ontario Premier) Kathleen Wynne is not popular, for whatever reason, whether because there is a hunger for change, or because she is an older, lesbian woman.

Perhaps it’s because she and her Liberal government shut down all the coal-fired power generating stations, before the renovations to the nuclear and hydro ones had been completed.

Perhaps it’s because she and her Fiberals threw away 5 to 10 billion dollars over 25 years, by signing contracts for solar and wind-powered electricity.  They wasted 2 billion dollars by cancelling 2 clean, gas-fired generating plants, because they were too close to rich, influential voters.

They raised Ontario’s electrical rate to the highest in Canada, and almost the highest in North America, causing manufacturers to re-locate elsewhere, losing 40,000 jobs – including mine – thank you very much!

They blew a billion dollars on the Province’s medical helicopter-evacuation fleet – without any improvements or upgrades being achieved.  They blew another billion dollars on a computer system to make all medical files in the Province available to all health-care professionals – only the system doesn’t work, and has been abandoned.

They blew a billion dollars on a computerized payroll system for all Provincial employees.  It is so badly f….ouled up that some workers are a month behind on their pay, and it will take another billion to straighten it out.

Most Ontario voters would accept Marvin the Martian; the premier could be asexual, white, black…. or plaid.  We don’t merely want change for the sake of change; we want change for the better.

***

Skepticism is my nature!
Free thought is my methodology!
Agnosticism is my conclusion!
Atheism is my opinion!
Humanitarianism is my motivation!
Faith is what adults call ‘pretending.’

 

Flash Fiction #121

diner

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

I HAVE SEEN THE LIGHT

“What are we doing here? If we were any further east, we’d have to trade the car for a rowboat.”

“I told you! To get a little piece of real American Patriotism.  Look at that menu.  They still offer Freedom Fries, and Freedom Toast.  I want to make America great again too, but I think we can do it without building walls, restricting immigration, or Trump’s paranoia.

Trump probably can’t even spell Woonsocket, RI, and thankfully, neither his GPS nor his handlers paraded him through here during his election tour. Order up, and we’ll go talk to some original Patriots.”

***

Go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

***

Have a Happy/Merry/Drunken Whatever-you-wish-to-celebrate.  😎

Alabama Internet

monitor

A POST WHERE WE FIND OUT WHERE SUPPORTERS
OF DONALD TRUMP GET THEIR INFORMATION

Bible Belt Computer Lingo

Log On – make the wood stove hotter
Log Off – don’t add no more wood
Monitor – keep an eye on that wood stove
Download – gettin’ the wood off the pickup
Floppy Disc – what you get from tryin’ to carry too much wood
Ram – the thing what splits the fire wood
Hard Drive – comin’ home from the bar after the KKK meetin’
Prompt – throw another log on the fire
Window – what to shut when it’s cold outside
Screen – what to shut in fly season
Byte – what flies do
Bit – what flies did
Mega Byte – what big flies do
Chip – munchies while monitorin’
Micro chip – what’s left after you ate the chips
Modem – what you did to the hay fields
Dot Matrix- ol’ Dan Matrix’s wife
Lap top – where kittens sleep
Software – them dumb plastic knives they give you at Golden Corral
Hardware – real stainless steel knives an’ forks
Mouse – what eats the grain in the barn
Main frame – what holds the barn up
Enter – fancy city talk for, “Y’all come on in now”
Web – the thing spiders make
Web site – where the spiders make ‘em
Search Engine – what you do when yer car dies
Cursor – somebody who swears a lot
Screen saver – a repair kit fer the torn screen door

I think about half of these are deplorable. C’mon Election, before more of these pop up!   😆
***

The wife and I are invading the Excited States again, and won’t be back for a few days.  Enjoy a few laughs on my tab while I’m gone.  I’ll be back with some real live comments, and perhaps a Flash Fiction soon.

Roast Lame Duck

Presidential Seal

In a comment about my recent, less-than-glowing satire about the boy King Tut Justin Trudeau, Canada’s second-youngest Prime Minister, BrainRants, always the instigator, challenged me to skewer U.S. President Obama next.  That’s as hard as trying to nail Jell-O to a tree.  As Gertrude Stein said, “There is no There, There!”  I’m going to try to roast him, even though he looks like he’s already lightly roasted.

Here is a view of Obama’s reign Presidency, from one Canadian Curmudgeon’s point of view.  It has been a most cynical political presentation, not necessarily from Obama, who may actually believe the hype, but by his backers and controllers.  Oops, I almost said ‘owners.’

I was particularly unimpressed with both the early ‘Birther’ scandal, and then, following it, the ‘His second name is Hussein.  Is he really a Muslim?’, both of which seemed designed to keep him in the public eye,  as a victim of Big Business and those nasty, entitled, entrenched Republicans.

His handlers offered him up as a ‘Black President,’ with the motto, ‘Change.’ The more things change, the more they stay the same.  Obama has been about as exciting as tapioca pudding – and almost as white.

Even the idiot-child, George W. Bush, as POTUSThe Next Generation, America’s equivalent to Canada’s ski-bum, yoga instructor Trudeau, could be counted on for something memorable whenever Dick Cheney let go of the marionette strings.

I think Georgie Malaprop has been misunderestimated. He will always be remembered for comedy gems like, “The French don’t even have a word for entrepreneur.”, and his aircraft-carrier comedy show, titled “Mission Accomplished’ will go down in the annals of humor.

Obama will be remembered for…. Sorry, I dozed off.  He doesn’t have the presence and rememberability of even the least of the Kardashians.

Mr. ‘Sunny Ways’, Sonny Trudeau has been castigated for taking selfies at International Meetings, when he should have been practicing Statecraft. Obama just seems to slouch and stump around the White House, hoping that, when it’s all over, he can get a free copy of the official photographer’s Photo-Ops book, when he has to go back and get a real job, and earn his own money.

Obama has been like the black hole of politics. No matter how much heat or light was shined on him, none of it seemed to escape his event horizon and reflect back upon the public.  His P.R. handlers have had to rely a lot on the females of the family. ‘Here’s Michelle, planting and tending a Victory Garden.’ Probably growing poke salad and collard greens, and trying to remember how to make Soul Food.

Or one of his two terminally-cute daughters – usually Malia, the elder. Here she is, out on her first date, where social propriety and birth control are guaranteed by Secret Service Glocks.  Then there’s the story of how she’s going to take a bridge year between High School and college, to do some studying, because she failed Secondary Geography. “Daddy, where’s Kenya?”

Even with the good possibility that his replacement as President will be either Broomhilda the Witch, or Hagar the Horrible, it doesn’t seem to indicate that a lot of people will miss him when he’s gone. Most of them, intentionally or not, have missed him while he was in office.

 

Two, No Trump

Bridge

In honor of The US Presidential campaign.

***

Hillary Clinton is out jogging, and she
encounters a man with some puppies. She asks
the man what kind of puppies they are, and the
man responds, “They’re Democrat puppies.”

Clinton thinks that is so great that the next day
she brings Bill to see these puppies for himself.
She asks the man to tell Bill what kind of puppies
they are, and he responds, “They’re Republican puppies.”

She looks puzzled and says, “Yesterday, you told me
they were Democrat puppies.” The man
smiles and says, “Yesterday, they were.
But today, they have their eyes open!”

***

Rev. Jerry Falwell was seated next to Bill Clinton
on a recent flight. After the plane was airborne,
the flight attendant came around for drink orders.

The First-Husband-to-be asked for a whiskey & soda,
which was brought and placed before him.
The attendant then asked the minister if he would
also like a drink. The minister replied in
disgust, “Ma’am, I’d rather be savagely raped by a
brazen whore than let liquor touch these lips!”

Bill then handed his drink back to the
attendant and said, “I’m sorry, I didn’t know there
was a choice. I’ll have the same thing he’s
having.”

😆

Op-Ed Joust

Op-Ed

During the recent Canadian Federal Election campaign, which threatened to become as long and strange as the American one, a failed municipal politician with very Liberal leanings had the following rant/letter about the Conservative Prime Minister published in the local paper.

A QUESTIONABLE TACTIC

I’m no fan of Stephen Harper. No surprise there.  But not withstanding my political leanings, I am deep disturbed that he is, by accounts, a five-question leader.

On a daily basis he has been limiting questions from the national media to four, and one from local media, with no follow-ups. I am unaware of any such limits by the other party leaders.

We are in the middle of a profoundly critical debate about Canada’s future, so we need to hear clear answers to the most difficult questions that face our country. But the person who wants us to continue to support him for four years is limiting reporters to a mere five questions a day.

My conclusions may be ungenerous, but I would call this hiding. Personally, I don’t think any of our leaders should be hiding behind arbitrary rules that limit our ability to ask tough questions of them every day of the campaign, and have them answer them thoroughly and comprehensively, so as to be transparent and accountable.

Perhaps, just perhaps, this limit of five is the most telling indicator of how accountable Harper really is and is prepared to be. Maybe not.

John Ryrie

Fortunately, a fresh shipment of snark had just arrived here at Grumps R Us, and I was able to provide him with the following.

 

ON THE JOB

In his, A Questionable Tactic letter of Oct. 14, John Ryrie may have missed a point because, like me, he’s an old fogy.

Today’s banal public media circus is all too full of inconsequential 140 character Kardashian Tweets and Instagram photos of someone’s lunch of baked beans.

By limiting the media to five questions, Harper is forcing them to focus and do their job.  They have to plan ahead and ask incisive questions, more relevant than, “What color socks are you wearing?” or, “Are you betting on the Blue Jays?”

Five serious questions per day should be enough.  This allows him to get on with the important job of governing the country, rather than stopping to feed the Info-tainment industry.

 

Grumpy Old Archon (as usual)

 

Things get strange during an election campaign, as the Americans continue to learn.  Media reporters, and Liberal opponents, feel they can just stop the Prime Minister and pump him for information so they can direct their counterattack.  He’s got two jobs.  One is to run a campaign.  The other is to run the country – until he was defeated (Sadly, in my opinion.)

Perhaps the other party leaders have the free time to kibitz with reporters.  That’s what the P.M.’s Media Office, and press releases are for.  I can hardly imagine, “President Obama, will we be bombing Palmyra?” or, “Pope Francis, are you going to sanctify gay marriage?”

Have you Americans got some odd election occurrences you’d like to make us Canucks aware of?