My Onion Pi

If you can figure out the name, you'll know what it's about. Fortunately, I'm literate. I'm also funny on occasion. Just beware of the flying PMS.

Friday, August 18, 2006

A Hammy's work is never done...

Man, time flies when yer working yer butt off. This has ta be the busiest summer I have ever had. I can't believe it's August 18th already.... I have been working on my absurdly overambitious summer project of painting my entire household interior. I did get Ham Jr #2's room done and aside from the bronchospasm I had from spray painting the hardware on her dressers everything went really well. Nothing that a breathing treatment and a little steroids wouldn't fix. (Those meth heads don't know what they are doing....they ought to try Prednisone - talk about a buzz! Holy shit...) The room looks fabulous. In fact if it was any cuter it would explode. I painted her walls and trim 1950's pink, sanded her dressers and headboard and painted those white with black hardware, and put in little shadowbox shelves and a new rug. That was last week, this week I painted the living room and hallway, and ripped out the last of the wall-to-wall carpet. I decided to let Ham Jr #1 help me. I figured I was being a bit of a hypocrite because if she was a 9 year old boy I would be teaching him how to do that stuff. Actually, she was a lot of help....couldn't have done it without her.

I wish I had a digital camera I would take pictures. It's just that I have to be dragged into tech stuff kicking and screaming..... I think microwaves were out for 10 years before I finally got one, and that was only because Edith and Archie bought it for me.

So guess what? Queen Snarfetta is moving to California. She was going to stay with Rockdog, but he dodged that bullet (LOL). So anyway, while I was talking to her new prospective landlord (to give a reference) we discovered that we're both disgruntled old hippie chicks!!! How great is that?? Snarfetta's new landlord is an old California radical flower child (LOL) and we've decided to team up and make the world a better place. I'm not sure what we're going to do just yet....but I'll keep ya posted.

So Kimmy is going back to school! YEAH!! You go girl! (Hang in may suck a bit but you can do it.) I'm proud of you. And she got to meet Coffeedog live and in person. So nice.
Speaking of Coffee..I discovered after painting a wall or two that my new livingroom color is very coffee and cream like. Needless to say I like it...

So, I have a tech question (FS5, Nukie, etc...) I keep getting a notice from Microsoft that support for Service Pack 1 ends October 10th, but when I downloaded Service Pack 2 it made a mess of my e-mail (among other things) so I took it out and instead ordered the CD but do I need to install it and what will happen if I don't??

And what's with this blogger beta edition??? Do I hafta sign up for that?? What is it and why does it exist??

Anyway, if I haven't been around that's the reason why. I'm gonna cruise a little and see what blogs I can read.


Monday, August 14, 2006

The world according to Hammy

Nukie had posted a comment on Onion Dribbles that has me thinking. I guess blogs mean different things to different people. Maybe I'm being reactionary but I feel compelled to explain myself somewhat.

I went out to breakfast Friday with an old high school friend. She told me how much she likes reading "the blog", although she doesn't leave comments. It's funny because there aren't too many people in the "real world" who know about it. So I guess that it leaves me a little room to wander.

I told her that the nice thing about having a blog (with relative anonymity, if I don't count my brothers) is that it lets you become a caricature of yourself (an exaggeration if you will).
Part of what makes me, me is that I care about the world around me. I don't like injustice, corporate greed or a government run by billionaires who pretend to give a crap about anyone who isn't. I don't like the use of other peoples kids for cannon fodder, or using tax dollars for personal political agendas. I don't like not being able to buy a decent made item stamped "Made in USA" and I don't like the outsourcing of white collar jobs to India. I don't like conveniently porous borders to slave stock the so-called "unskilled labor" jobs with illegal aliens and I really don't like the shafting of the middle class American by business and government alike.
I don't like capitalism "gone wild" that makes money without any conscience or accountability, I don't like successive generations inheriting "crumbs from the table" if anything useable on this planet at all, and I don't like the state of health care in this country and the growing number of uninsured (or underinsured) people.

The problem is I'm not rich, I'm not powerful and I'm not in politics. But I still care.

So I have a place to talk about all of that.

As far as personal stories, writing has always been a way for me to take the things I'm thinking about out of my head (or heart) and put them on something relatively innocuous, like paper or in this case e-paper, so that I can view them from a different perspective. Turn them all around and look at them from all angles I guess. There is an art technique called chiaroscuro. It is the arrangement of light and dark. The light parts are viewed as important and necessary as the dark parts in forming a picture. I don't write things to make people feel bad, or make someone look bad (unless it's that asshole Bush and crew). I write about things to learn about myself. How am I connected to these people? How do I feel about things that happen or have happened and what it means to me now, if anything at all. And sometimes stark realities just make a good story. That's not to say the story will always be a happy one per say. But sometimes it's not an unhappy one either. It's just irony. Irony is one of my favorite happenings in life. Even when it doesn't turn out well. There's just something about irony that I find appealing. I don't know what to say. I do write some funny stuff. Actually, I write a lot of funny stuff, I think...

It's like when I used to work in the OR and they'd hand off some body part or another and you'd stare at it, sitting in the bowl. You'd stare at it with this kind of strange mix of revulsion and fascination and think things like "Boy, we sure do look a lot like chicken sometimes." or "I'm never going to eat steak again." or "Holy shit, is that what that looks like." or "How the hell am I supposed to fit this in that container?" or a whole lotta other weird thoughts.

Sometimes ya just need to say things. If nothing else, just to see if there's anyone out there
who feels the same way.

-Ham for a Day

Sunday, August 06, 2006

The latest "good idea" from the government

The newest idea in welfare reform:

"...under new federal rules, studying for a bachelor's degree no longer counts by itself as an acceptable way for people on welfare to spend their time.

A decade after the government set out to transform the nation's welfare system, the limits on college are part of a controversial second phase of welfare reform that is beginning to ripple across the country. The new rules, written by Congress and the Bush administration, require states to focus intensely on making more poor people work, while discouraging other activities that might help untangle their lives.

By Oct. 1, state and local welfare offices must figure out how to steer hundreds of thousands of low-income adults into jobs or longer work hours. They also must adjust to limits on the length of time people on welfare can devote to trying to shed drug addictions, recover from mental illnesses or get an education.

This second generation of change reverses a central idea behind the 1996 law that ended six decades of welfare as an unlimited federal entitlement to cash assistance. The law decentralized welfare, handing states a lump sum of money and the freedom to design their own programs of temporary help for poor families. Ten years later, the government is tightening the federal reins.

Many state officials and advocates are furious. "You had fixed block grants in exchange for state flexibility," said Elaine M. Ryan, deputy executive director of the American Public Human Services Association, which represents welfare directors around the country. "Now you have fixed block grants in exchange for federal micromanagement. . . . That was not the deal."

Aside from government micromanagement, I really don't think this is a good idea. I'm not saying send them to Medical School, but shit...obtaining education that will help get not only that one person off welfare, but their family as well. And create a role model of a working parent instead of a welfare parent, not to mention a parent who went to college.

I've paid for my own education, and still I'm not a fan of handing out college degrees to welfare recipients (or prisoners for that matter) but it makes more sense than paying them to sit around on their asses, or work jobs that still qualify them for welfare...

Once upon a time I taught (adult learners) the Certified Nurses Aide classes at a job I once had. They gave me a group of about 17 or 18 people of varying ages and races. I took the job seriously, and worked to make these kids and older adults successful.
I had a girl in my class who looked like a typical trailer trash dumb ass blonde. When I graded the first exam I was shocked to see she had gotten one of the highest grades in the class. When the class was over I started to talk to her about her exam. What struck me so much about this girl was how insistant she was that she was stupid. It took me months to convince her she was not only smart, but that she had the ability to go on with her education and become a nurse.

I had the highest passing percentage of CNA's in the entire history of that facilities classes. That class and I turned more than a few peoples lives in a better direction. A couple years later, after I had left that job, I got a phone call from that girl's boyfriend telling me she had just graduated from Nursing School. He told me she wanted me to be at her graduation, instead of her Mother, because her Mother was an abusive alcoholic loser who couldn't care less for her daughters accomplishments. He told me that throughout her entire time at Nursing School when things got tough, she talked about the nurse who had encouraged her, and told her she had the ability to be a great nurse, and was the first person in her life to tell her she was smart and capable and deserved a better life than the shit she was handed... He wanted to thank me...but he already had...

Some people are lazy, manipulative losers who earn the shitty lives they lead. But some people aren't. I guess I would rather take the chance on paying to make sure that one of the deserving ones aren't overlooked... Maybe that's liberal, maybe its bleeding heart and maybe it's stupid. But it's how I see it. Some people have just had so much shit poured on their head that they can't overcome it all. Not everyone has the same chances in life. I'm a fighter for the underdog and I guess I always will be. But that girl showed me something. Even a white trailer trash loser may really be a smart capable nurse in disguise...


Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Quote of the Day

"Love is an exploding Cigar we willingly smoke." -Lynda Barry

Beans, that's what I like about you. When you disagree at least you do it intelligently.
You make a lot of good points, and I have to say I agree in theory with everything you say. I do however, have a problem with the way the whole "free market" thing has evolved.

The problem, the way I see it is this:

In the beginning was man and man needed stuff. Man needed so much stuff that he couldn't make it all himself. So man hooked up with others and formed big groups to make stuff. Now it was easy to divide the stuff making by whomever was the best at making it, because their were more people. So people became makers and traders of stuff and people began to specialize. Some things were more valuable than others, but overall, since so much stuff was needed and nothing was easy to obtain everyone managed to do OK.

As time went by people began to invent ways to make making stuff easier. Initially that was great because their was still a lot less stuff than people. But now it became evident that some stuff was much more desirable than other stuff and some makers of stuff managed to do much, much better than others. As these people started to acquire and keep the limited resources like land, materials and access, other people were getting shut out and subsequently couldn't make that stuff. Now those particular stuff makers were doing much, much, much better than the others. But that was still OK because those people that were shut out from making the stuff, could now lend their labor to help the makers of stuff make more. So they were compensated with money. So some people became makers of stuff and others became users of stuff but since the users of stuff were compensated by helping the makers make stuff it all worked out OK.

Eventually those materials and access to resources were held and kept in fewer and fewer hands and then those hands started to look around and say, "Why do we need to have all of these users of stuff helping us when we could take our stuff and go make it over there where people are willing to make our stuff for less." and so they did. But that left the people who had originally been making the stuff out in the cold, because there was no stuff to make where they were. So now they didn't have anything they could make or do and had no compensation because now there was a lot more users of stuff than makers of stuff. So the makers of stuff had a lot of options and the users of stuff did not. So then the makers of stuff told the users of stuff that they didn't have any skills worth paying any meaningful compensation for. (Meaning any of the skills the makers of stuff couldn't eliminate) And since the makers of stuff owned most of the stuff and the resources used to make the stuff the users of stuff had very little choices.

(Hm-mm-mm. this is starting to sound a lot like Player Piano to me....) But I'm no Vonnegut.
Still, this is the problem as I see it. The glittery marvels and sweet promises of Capitalism aside, the truth of the matter is we have come full circle back to the Middle Ages. Only instead of Lords of the Manor and Serfs, we have Corporations and Consumers. Same difference.

I always say "isms" are "isms" and they all look good on paper. But the actual practice of all these "isms" usually have one major flaw, and that's the "Human Factor". Everything changes when you add in the human factor. Humans are greedy. We have just traded a person, a recognizable face for a faceless corporation...dare I say, a Beast. But the result is the same and we are all bowing down to the Beast and the only cost is the sacrifice of human beings.

I know that much of what happens to people is a result of choice. Believe me, I see it every day in the ER...(shudder) you wouldn't believe the things I see. And I could easily be a hard hearted people hater. (Sometimes I am a little too calloused) but I try to cut people some slack. I too decided to go to college (and then more and more college) to seek out a better wage and position in the "market place" but I know that some people can't do that for whatever reason. I'm lucky that I have the support and assistance I need to undertake this whole Master's Program. I can easily envision being stuck and not able to change my circumstances if just a few things in my life were different. Some people really have to follow their heart when it comes to the work they do, some people choose to give up compensation to be of what they consider to be helping others. Paramedics are a good example of this. Woefully underpaid for what they do.... The sin in this is that we NEED these people, but act like we don't. Where would we be without Nurses Aides or Paramedics? Both of who usually make less than $10 an hour.

Other people just don't have the same kind of opportunities and support. It's easy when you're walking a clear straight path to arrive at your destination. It isn't so easy when the path is strewn with obstacles or the path is all uphill, or riddled with peaks and valleys.
Some people just can't overcome to the same degree. And we don't have the right to take advantage of that.

I NEED garbage men, waitresses, latte makers, store clerks, cab drivers, bell hops, bartenders, night watchmen, ticket takers, car washers, valet parkers, shampoo girls, receptionists, delivery boys, lawn trimmer guys and all of those other people that don't need a degree to do their jobs. How would my life function without them? I appreciate and need them. I know they work their asses off for the money and I think they deserve some measure of fair compensation. They don't deserve to be nickled and dimed.

Where would we be if everyone was a rocket scientist? Screwed...with no coffee no less.
The point is, Starbucks benefits mightily from the latte makers, restaurants benefit mightily from the wait staff and theaters need ticket takers and the guy handing you the bucket of popcorn. I'm not saying don't make a profit, I'm just saying SHARE THE WEALTH for crying out loud. The shareholders don't need to make millions a years, CEO's don't need to take home $25 million a year, and for christ sakes corporations don't need to profit billions of dollars a quarter. Share the fucking wealth.

As for healthcare? Yes. It is a right. It is just as much a right as a national military and homeland security is. Is is as much a right as having the police force, the fire department, the parks department, the highway department, the FDA, CIA, FBI, public schools, hospitals and anything else you can think of that the government provides.

The sin of it is that politics and greed (Can you say American Medical Association and its lobbyists?) are the reasons we don't have a national plan in place. Is it spelled out in the constitution? No, but what is implied is the obligation to take care of the well being of the people in this country in whatever form that takes. The founding fathers were smart enough not spell everything out in detail....probably because they saw how people dance around the Ten Commandments...and that's only 10 statements. Instead they provided a living document that has expanded over the years to cover many areas by amendments. This is another one of those areas that needs to be added. And soon. Healthcare should not be a burden that companies have to carry. If they want to ADD to it - so much the better, then people can receive enhanced plans as a benefit, but we need a comprehensive BASIC plan that covers every CITZEN of this country and allows basic medical and dental care to be access for the cost of the taxes we pay. Cut the PORK and spend the money AT HOME.

I like you Beans, yer alright with me. I think we are alike in the heart...we just have a different perspective at times. I'm sure Sam Walton was a great man. He sure had some good ideas. Too bad his heirs don't see it the same way. (Greedy slobs).

As for the flat tax...Hm-mm-mm...I'm still tossing that one around. I kind of favor it in some respects but the across the board percentage tax is very appealing too. I can tell you one thing I am squarely against is the elimination of the Estate Tax. Paris Hilton be damned...


Monday, July 31, 2006

Victory Dance...

"I fixed my computer, I fixed my computer!!" It's true...I fixed it myself, and it's running like a champ.

Waka, you big shit....I'll remember's only a bike fer christ sake....
You'll all be sorry when I'm gone...
Your gonna say, I shoulda let old Hammy ride the bike. And it will be too late.

Thanks WDKY for the advice. It really helped. You're an angel.....

FS5 you should link that pic. I figured you'd find it...ya smart little computer type dude, you.
Not that I feel sorry for her, working for the Bush Admin would give me a migraine too.

Firestarter, I have to say the photo's on yer blog are shitty as all hell and nauseating to the eye teeth, but I have to back Israel on this one. With all due respect to the truly innocent, at least Israel doesn't dick around. They give 'em a warning to cut the shit, and if they don't they rain bombs. Better than what we're doing: using your military personnel for cannon fodder and spending $300 billion and 4 years dip shitting around. Israel has always played it straight with terrorists. I'm sure this comment will ignite a shit storm but that's how I see it... It sometimes seems that in the Middle East, Israel can do no right, but everyone else is cut the slack. When was the last time anyone heard of Israel sending suicide bombers into other peoples countries? I realize it all stems back to the original 1917 agreement with Britain, which was a big jacked up deal, and the mess of the Balfour declaration. But the bottom line is every time Israel does a "land for peace deal" the other side gets the land and never manages to keep the peace. It's a lotta crap. Lebanon is as dirty as all the rest...

As for minimum wage (as long as I'm on a run) there is NO EVIDENCE that raising wages cuts jobs. NO EVIDENCE. Even among economists surveyed in 2003 only 46% agreed with the statement that raising minimum wage cuts jobs. People who work deserve to be able to live. There is no such thing as an "unskilled job" if you have to think, write, speak, or physically manipulate something then that's a freaking skill!! Christ almighty. Anyone who has worked as a waitress, a cab driver, a nurses aide, a tow truck driver, a short order cook, a store clerk or any one of the host of low paying jobs knows that you BUST YOUR ASS on those goddamn jobs and people deserve to be able to afford to live in decent housing and drive a decent car, as well as put food on the table and clothe themselves. When these fucking CEO's earn ten bazillion goddamn dollars a year, and these sports thugs earn Gazillions, and these fucking Hollywood numbnuts earn Tragillions a year then YES, the common working stiff deserves a fucking decent paying job!

Beans: $10 and hour (and you know you don't get a paid lunch with that, baby) translates to $375 dollars GROSS an week. Big Fucking Deal...and that's by the year 2010. Shit balls that's all that is....for a city as expensive as Chicago it's shit balls. What should minimum wage be? Oh, I don't know. Why don't we do something like....tie it to the salary of the CEO???? Yeah, that's a good idea. Tie it to the salary of the CEO. He makes more, they make more. Yeah, that'll work for me.

Do you all realize that these jobs are held by men and women in their 30's, 40's, 50's?? We aren't talking teenagers here. Next time you are in Walmart....take a look at who really works there. Not everyone is going to go to college and earn a degree as a Lawyer or Doctor or Engineer or Rocket Scientist. Not everyone is going to learn a trade and be an Electrician or a Plumber. Sometimes it doesn't work out that way for some people - for whatever reason. But they are still working for crying out loud. They shouldn't be PUNISHED for it by having to work for shit pay.

The top 6 richest Walton family members combined incomes total almost 1 trillion dollars.
That is a freaking sin.

And we need a national health insurance plan of some kind! Health benefits are not optional they are a RIGHT. This country needs to step up to the plate and TAKE CARE OF ITS CITIZENS.

Washington is owned by the wealthy and the powerful. The wealthy are greedy and distanced from the reality of the average man and womans life. The wealthy are concerned with increasing their wealth, period. Laws are not made they are bought. The only time something like this gets passed is when the cry and hue of the sin of not passing it has been ignored beyond what the politicians can even stand. And then what is passed is too little too late.

Sorry baby, but its PMS week...and like I once said, PMS for me means play mine straight...or as my ex once said, "PMS with you means pack my suitcase."

Jalepeno Ham

Friday, July 28, 2006

Learning to fly

Did anyone happen to see the picture of Condoleezza Rice in the New York Times on Thursday?? Well it's priceless. She's shown standing at a microphone with Prime Minister Fouad Siniora of Lebanon next to her and she's holding her head and looking like she's about to puke, pass out or both. The caption should read "Why did I take this job, why DID I take this job?" Maybe FS5 can scare it up. He's good at stuff like that.

Other good news in the Times: Chicago orders "Big Box" stores to raises wages. To a mere $10 an hour by 2010 and an additional $3.oo in benefits. Paltry, but it's a start.

Another piece of news that made old Hammy smile: The securities and exchange commission adopted a set of rules to make it easier to see how much top executives are paid.

Well, well. All in all 3 good reasons to buy the NY Times.

So I've been taking out my love life angst with power tools in the form of sanding down and refinishing my daughters dressers. God power tools are theraputic!! And cheaper than buying shoes, although they don't look as nice...

I went to the grocery store to return my empty bottles and in comes this guy (who I have seen walking around town from time to time) who has one huge mat of hair from the top of his head to the back of his knees. He has several layers of clothes on, including a parka jacket (This is July, and even in Buffalo it's warm in July) and has an odor radius of about 2 and 1/2 feet and is laughing to himself (with some gusto I might add). He ends up standing in the checkout line behind me in order to redeem his bottle tickets for a bag of Dorito's. So I turned around and
gave him my bottle tickets. I figured he needed it more than me. If he weren't so plumb crazy I would have mentioned to him, that in the future - should he happen to need medical care - that several OTHER area hospitals have great ER's... just in case.

So I saw Pirates of the Carribean, Dead Man's Chest and I have to say I enjoyed the performance. Johnny Depp is great in that part and he's made it an excellent character.
However, it is a shameless set up for the third movie - even by Hollywood standards. Christ it almost feels like it ends in the middle of the goddamn movie. I'm sitting there and all of a sudden it's over? So, I'm like WTF? But I'll tell ya this - it takes some talent to make a guy with rotten teeth so goddamn sexy. Holy shit...Mm-mm-mmm. The kissing scenes make me want to spit, but he is a sexy, sexy man.

So Waka, the girls tell me you have a motorcycle!?! Is this true???? In that case why haven't ya come over here and given me a riding lesson....ya big shit...

I'm off...need to cruise some blogs.

C U Later


Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Yeah, yeah...happy birthday to me...

Ok. Well Waka went and posted a happy birthday message for me on his blog. Yep, twas my birthday last week.

Ok. I'm only gonna say this once, so pay attention:

The official number is 29. It stays 29 until I change it, and I ain't a gonna change it.

And in case yer wondering where Nukie's baby picture will be scanned in and posted in September at some point. And then I'll tell ya the secret about these pictures if ya don't figure it out. Hint: review Waka's and see if ya notice anything...I'm not a tellin afore September...

Oh, hell...

Well. I'm back from vacation and in stereotypical fashion I called in sick on what was supposed to be my first day back (fuck that shit) because in my mind I was still on vacation.
So guess what happens while I'm home playin hookey? The friggin light in the kitchen spontaneously explodes and catches fire! WTF!! So, big mess, Archie "helping" me (holy shit, one of these days I'm gonna just lose it...) and had to call in to work ANOTHER day AND pay premium price for an electrician to come out on a Sunday and inspect the wires and shit so I could turn the electricity back on that circuit. WTF?

Then...I'll spare the details and just say I ended up getting a not too pleasant kick in the ass in the "affairs of the heart" department. I had to go to WDKY's blog and view a slide show of all of his HNT pics and go to FS5's blog and read how much of an asshole Bush is just to make myself feel better.

Jesus H. Christ.

Nukie, my computer is all fucked up again, and it's not my fault. Fix it pleeeeeeeease!

Well Runningman ended his blog. It's a shame, it was one of my favorite one's.
Good luck to ya honey and stop by and say Hi every once in a while.

I see Bush is still an asshole (have to say it, it makes me feel better).

So I need to channel all this heartbreak hotel energy into something, I'm gonna paint the living room and rip the carpet out and put a nice oriental carpet in there. Nothing like a little decorating ta make me feel better...or some shit like that...

Well, I'm off ta visit some blogs.
See ya,

Ham-burger Helper Hammy

P.S. Like the illustration for this post? That's how I friggin feel... and with no novocaine either....shit, shit and double shit.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Clean Up Yer Computer

Ok. I know it's not the computers fault but it needs to clean up its act.
If your computer needs to clean up its act I highly recommend cruising over to Firestarter 5's blog site. Heres the link. The porn shots are on the bottom (no pun intended).

I'd like ta say thanks, eh! The Crap Cleaner is the best. Wakanukie said he heard it would interfere with Spybot Search and Destroy (another great download) but I haven't found that to be the case.


Sunday, July 09, 2006

Family Reunion Time

If anyone needs me, I'll be at the beach. It's family reunion time again. LOL


Monday, July 03, 2006

Happy Fourth of July

Happy 4th of July. Hope everyone is having a nice relaxing day free from work, stress and George Bush.

On this day I like to remember that the United States belongs to the people. (No matter what the elected assholes like to think.)

I also like to take a moment and remember the "red" in the stripes and say a from-the-heart thank you to all those who gave of themselves in this country's history. The United States has many outstanding things about it, but I think our military ranks right up there. It never fails to amaze me that no matter how lazy, stupid, selfish or ignorant the general population of this country seems to me at times, that what rises to the top are dedicated and honorable people who make the voluntary (and sometimes involuntary) choice to defend their nation and President; in more often than not, dismal and dangerous circumstances. Usually on foreign shores and sometimes without much support or understanding at home.

I never take their sacrifice lightly and I know without them I couldn't have the life I lead today. This day belongs to them. And because of them this day belongs to us.

Kiss a soldier! (and then send him to me...)

Star Spangled Hammy

Friday, June 30, 2006

Wakanukie, ya owe me ten bucks

Well, I ended up with a "B" in Chemistry. Not bad for an old broad who hasn't taken an Algebra or a Science class in two decades...
I learned some interesting stuff.
Namely, you can whip up all kinds of useful things in a chemistry lab.
For example, the chemical formula for Trinitrotoluene (also known as TNT) is C7H5(NO2)3 and Cyanide is a basically simple polyatomic ion of Carbon and Nitrogen.

Ah well, it's a good thing I discovered all this stuff after the good old bad days...(the fun I could have had...)

So the Hammy family is going on vacation later this month. Unfortunately it won't involve VW buses, Gerry Garcia or tie dye clothing. But it's a vacation nonetheless. We're going to the seaside. Or close enough...the idyllic shores of Lake Ontario. For a NO AGENDA week of sand and sun.

I trotted the little Hams and Wakanukies kids to Target for bathing suits and a few new clothes. The youngest Ham has a bad habit of thinking her clothes are either single-use only or really portable napkins. Gee-sus. It's bad enough that one look around the kitchen and you can always tell where she's eaten, but one look at her shirt will tell you WHAT she's eaten. Terrible.
Anyway, I spent a good portion of the time in the Fitting Room telling them "Come on girls, Auntie Ham needs a Latte - bad."

Memo to self: Next time, stop at Tim Horton's FIRST.

Afterward I took them all to lunch at the only place all four of them could agree on...Mc Donalds. (Yuk.) So there we are with our assorted "Happy Meals" and the like. Well, my older niece makes a tiny (teeny tiny) hole in the corner of the packet of her salad dressing, and decides to "squirt" the rest out by shear force. In the meantime this older man comes walking down the aisle just as her salad dressing arch's into the air, and gets the vast majority of the packet on both legs of his pants. So I get up and try to help him wipe up the mess with a napkin (bad idea. very bad idea.) and she (poor thing) was completely mortified and really very sorry about the whole thing, but he was a little porky about it (not that I blame him) so I ended up having to give him ten bucks so he could dry clean his pants. Afterwards the kids and I laughed about it but I was doing all this on NO COFFEE (another very bad idea.)

Anyway, the upshot of the day:
1) Caesar Salad dressing does not come out easily from silk pants.
2)It takes half a week to earn it and one hour to spend $300 on shorts, T-shirts, two tiny bathing suits and a beach blanket.
3) and Waka, ya owe me ten bucks.

Is it September yet?


Thursday, June 29, 2006

In memory

This is one of my favorite pictures of Mary and the infant Jesus.

Well, it's over. The funeral was this morning. Unfortunately I had a Chemistry final to take and could not attend. For the lack of concentration I had, it almost would have been better to go to the funeral, but whatever I end up getting on this exam will be better than a zero.

I did go to the wake yesterday.

There aren't even words to describe how bad it was. My poor cousin was so buried in grief he was inconsolable. Everyone was just so heart broken.

I can't think of anything harder to wrap your mind around than the sight of a toddler in a casket. It's just a crime against nature.

The cycle of life is so hard to understand. There in the same room was his sister, who is expecting her first child in August. I felt bad for her in a way, but actually the timing couldn't be better in a way. We need the joy. They all need the joy.

Fortunately he has a large and very close family. And they all have very strong faith. Of course, no one really ever wants to test that faith...not like this...

The funny thing is, when something like this happens you cry for them as much as you do for yourself. The thought of the death of your own children makes it's way into your head.

I appreciate the thoughts and comments from everyone. It means a lot. I know this is a hard subject to read about but I really couldn't write about anything else when this was happening. I hope you all understand (I know you do).


Sunday, June 25, 2006

Not good news

My cousin's daughter died yesterday. She was 3 years old.
She drowned in their pool.
My mother told me the news before I went into work today. My first thought was that maybe it wasn't true (somehow) and my second thought was that I was glad they didn't come into my ER because it happened when I was at work Saturday. I know that may seem like a shitty thought, and maybe it is, but I don't want to see my family in my ER. That's one of my biggest fears. Sometimes it does happen, but not too often. And it's never happened with anything like this. This horrible...thing.

My poor cousin. He was watching her and he fell asleep. All I could think of was, how often did that happen to me when I was watching the kids. I am afraid for him. He is so griefstricken. There aren't words that can even describe his depth of grief and guilt.

I've been thinking about that psychic visit I had a couple of months ago when she told me she saw a funeral. A female relative.

Ever since she told me that - almost daily - I would think about it and wonder who it was and when it was going to happen. A few weeks ago I decided that the future is something I would rather not have advanced knowledge about. It's too much of a burden, and I can't deal with it as much as I would like to think I can.

I never thought it would be a little one.

I just don't understand things sometimes.

I want to go and see him. I just don't know if I should. This is so terrible. I don't want to intrude on his grief, but I want him to know I care.

Sometimes I think about losing my kids. I don't know what I would do if that happened. My littlest one is such a joy. She is so beautiful to look at. I just love staring at her pretty little heart shaped face. Sometimes I sit her on my lap and just let her prattle on and on and just watch her animations. And I think to myself, "God, she is just so beautiful." She holds all my joy, she really does. I don't know what I would do without her.

I feel so bad. I feel so bad for him. I feel so bad that all I can think about is that I'm glad it didn't happen to me. I know that's a normal thing to think, but I feel bad about it anyway.

The picture above is kind of strange, but what kind of picture do you post with something like this really? It's a photo someone took of the Black Madonna, but it came out too dark. Somehow I thought it would fit here....

How is it we can go through life and survive all the terrible things we survive?
And Christ Almighty, why do we have to? Why does life have to be so fucking hard all the time?

There must be more to the question of life and death.
The psychic told me there was nothing I could do about it and nothing I could do to stop it.
She also told me "she is ready to go".

I don't know what to make of that. When she said that I just assumed it was an older relative (Or me. shit sometimes I'm fucking ready to go.) But I never thought it was going to be a child.

All I can say, is I sincerely hope someday all of this crazy shit makes sense somehow. That someday there are answers and the answers make sense. God, I hope so. I hate to think there is no fucking rhyme or reason for any of this stuff.

She also told me that my family would get through this with a lot of love. I hope so. I don't know if they can. I don't know if he can.

Monday, June 19, 2006

The 99th post

I believe I am living in the most dangerous place on earth - the Land of Illusion, formerly known as The United States of America.

My country is floating on a cloud of illusion that we are still the greatest and the most powerful nation in the world. The truth is our status as a world power is slipping daily and our enemies, who are making alliances around the globe are growing stronger every day. Maybe someday the voicemail systems will be in Arabic (or Chinese or Korean or Russian) and we can press #2 for Spanish and #3 for English.

People here are under the mistaken impression that our schools and our level of education is the best in the world, when the truth is we fall ever closer to the bottom of the list every year that goes by. We continue to "prepare" an ever failing nation's children for “jobs and careers” that haven't existed in years and crank out kids by the thousands who can't read past an eighth grade level, can't perform basic math calculations and know more about Hip Hop culture and the newest cell phone ring tones than History or Geography. Meanwhile our American companies quietly hire engineers from India and China on a daily basis while handing our new grads a broom and a mop.

We continue to believe in the mythological story of the "American Dream" when the truth is the new "American Reality" is one of unemployment, underemployment or a life of Welfare, Medicaid and Food Stamps. The truth is our nations decline is fueled by outsourced jobs, illegal aliens and Walmart-style employment tactics that strip away health care benefits, pensions and livable wages layer by layer until the only thing that remains is the shell and a memory of what a Middle Class way of life used to be.

We continue to sing about "purple mountains majesty" and "amber waves of grain" when the truth is the land we love has been raped and peddled to the highest bidder. Between bananas from Chile and lettuce from Mexico, we can't even feed ourselves anymore. The family farmer has been replaced by business men with farm subsidies - being paid to grow nothing - and the family farms were driven out of business and bankrupted decades ago.

We continue to watch commercials showing poverty and ignorance as a way of life that applies to some other third world country around the globe, when the reality is that it's in our own backyard. We write out a check to Save the Children when the truth is that 1/3 of our nations children are growing up in poverty right in front of our face and "No Child Left Behind" is a farce and a failure.

We continue to accept politician words like "global economy" and "free market" when the truth is they are just labels slapped on to cover up an unprecedented corporate level of greed and corruption that is truly mind boggling. We like to believe in the Ward Cleaver illusion of the 1950's workforce; flying in the face of facts that tell us the average CEO earns 3-400 times more than the other workers in the company. The truth is that outsourcing American jobs has become our number one export, and dismantling the American workforce the number one agenda.

We continue to uphold the myth that everyone in the country has access to the best health care on earth, when the truth is we are one of only two nations on the planet that don't have universal health care coverage for it's population. A whopping 80 million Americans do not have health care coverage at any given time. We can't cure or adequately manage the top ten chronic illnesses that pummel the shit out of the national healthcare budget and we have no plan, goal or direction for the mental illness and drug addiction's that have ravaged our work force population and filled our prisons to the brim. The nations Emergency Rooms are in crisis, filling the role of the dwindling primary care doctors offices and non-existant Medicaid clinics. The nations hospitals are being bankrupted with disenfranchised elderly who have no long term care provisions or assistance and our prisons and homeless shelters are serving as Mental Institutions and Drug Rehab centers.

We continue to debate the nonsense of Democrat vs. Republican when the truth is we are flipping the two sides of the same coin - neither one of which is brave enough or honest enough or capable enough to pull us out of the mire we are sinking further into every day.

We stand open armed and closed eyed at Ellis Island, while the truth is our borders are as porous as our bank accounts and retirement plans. Illegal aliens walk across or drive across, unseen and undocumented by Immigration, but expected and welcomed by businesses across the county who are rapidly replacing any remaining American workers with the newest form of slave labor.

We delude ourselves into thinking that the terrorists are somewhere out in the desert, with ski masks on and a machine gun in hand when the truth is, they're across the street from us, and standing behind us in the supermarket; hating us and waiting for the opportunity to attack us like a pack of rabid dogs.

We continue to “charge” our way to happiness, when the truth is our collective debt - both on a personal level and a governmental level - is staggeringly unsustainable. Foolishly believing the party will never end - yet when the day comes and the foreign nations who own us, call in the markers on our debt - our governmental and personal economy will collapse like a financial house of cards.

We persist in the myth of our own civility, when the truth is our streets, our schools and our public places are filled with gangsta's and barbarians who measure the worth of other people in terms of what can be taken or stolen from them. Manners, decency and respect for life have long left the building and we didn't even notice.

We continue to delude ourselves that we are one nation under God, when the truth is that God has been torn down and traded off from our schools, our government and our churches decades ago in the warped attempt at making everyone happy. The truth is we are growing a nation of children who are adrift and making their way ever closer to the amoral whirlpool which is sucking them under.

We wrap ourselves in the pink clouded belief that our politicians are “American’s”, when the truth is they belong to their own special nation of the Billionaire Elite; manipulating and manufacturing laws and loopholes to benefit only themselves and those that own them. They line their pockets as fast as they can, while laying the rest of us out on a silver platter.

We delude ourselves into thinking that Middle Eastern wars are “winnable”. When the truth is we are fighting ideology and fanaticism wrapped in centuries of ignorance, bloodshed and animal hatred that we can't even begin to understand. Our President justifies his actions by sending minor officials to attend the funerals of other people’s children and continues to play war games in an Ivory Tower drenched with honorable men's blood and draped with a White House web of Lies.

We placate ourselves with Disaster Relief plans and Community Drills when the truth is the infrastructure, the resources and the capable manpower is so inadequate for just every day use, that should a disaster befall us, our best option would be to become flexible enough to be able to bend over and kiss our own asses good-bye.

Our President fiddles while Washington burns, and we just stand around and tap our toes to the American Idol music.

I want my country back. But I'm afraid it's too late.
All I can do is stand there and watch us circle the damn drain.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006


So I finally managed to put together a blurby piece of writing on Wrath. The deadly sin delegated to me by Nukie. It's just that I've been so busy. I'm in "summer school" taking Chemistry of all things. Great subject, Chemistry. Too bad I have to "get a grade" in it. All this grading stuff really dampens one's enthusiasm for learning a subject doesn't it?

The illustration above is my new desktop background. Isn't is cute? It's a penguin in a hot air balloon. I needed a change from Stonehenge.

Anyway, I see the Dem's can be as corrupt and stupid as the GOP. What's with Patrick Kennedy and his boozing problem? Ah well, I guess the apple doesn't fall too far from the tree now does it. At least he didn't drown anybody.

And that joker William Jefferson - $90,000 cash in the freezer. Jesus, how drug dealerish is that?

I don't know why the kids even bother going to school in June. Between the field trips, the theme parties and the plays I can see why the US schools have fallen to 24th on the list. Christ Almighty.

The little one is in a play today. She tells me on Thursday night at 9 PM as I'm getting her out of the tub, that she needs a DOG COSTUME for her play rehersal IN THE MORNING!?! Shit. Talk about out we go to the only godforsaken place open at 9 PM that will have brown felt and it's not my favorite place - you guessed it WALMART or SPRAWLMART that bane of suburbia and wrecker of the decent paying job market. I hate spending money in WALMART. So I was up until 2 AM making a freaking dog costume. I'll remind her of all this someday.
But it really turned out cute...although the stitching was a little large because I was pretty cross-eyed by that point.

The bigger Ham Junior had her (one of THREE!!!) dance recitals at Fantasy Island ( a local amusement park) on Memorial Day. God, it was hot as Hades and I got sunburned. Now I'm peeling. Yuk. Very unattractive let me tell ya. The next 2 recitals are at UB's Center for the Arts. This multiple recital thing really blows. It's cute the first time but Jesus.... And her outfit is SKIMPY!! So this is where it all starts I guess. I could practically fit the whole damn thing in a sandwitch baggie. (I posted a little story on just that subject on Dribbles. The names have been changed to protect the innocent...or something like that).

So today is 6/6/06. I guess people are a little freaked about it. Stupid. If they want to get freaked about something they should look at who's sitting behind the big shiny desk in the Oval office. Now that's something to get freaked about. Remember when everyone thought Ronald Reagan was the antichrist? Well, he had nothing on Georgie Boy. I'd take the Alzheimered old guy any day compared to this fool...and that is sure saying something.

Well, I'm happy to report that the Sunrocket VoIP phone is a success. My old phone number should be transferred by Friday and I can kiss Verizon good-bye. One of my patients at work told me that the GAS COMPANY (Evil Bastards) charges $2.00 a month to bill me. So, I looked on my bill and sure enough they do. What fuckers. Those people have 5000 ways to screw ya. That's another company that I'd like to kiss good-bye. A guy I knew who was an engineer told me the gas company has a subsidiary company that supplies fuel at a lower rate, so I'm checking into that.

Today is Grievance Day at the Town Assessment Department. I'm going to go and grieve my ridiculously hiked up new property assessment. Good luck with that racket, right. Yeah, I know but I have to get out some of my wrath about it. (LOL) Another set of evil fuckers. Goddam Tax Assessors....

I just hope that Dante's Inferno is somewhat descriptively true. Maybe there will be a special level of Hell for all these people. (Insurance Adjusters can be included in there too)

So I'll catch up later.

-Wrathy Ham

Monday, June 05, 2006


Of all the “Seven Deadly Sins”, Wrath is the one that applies to me. I don’t know if it has anything to do with being Italian or not, but I have a temper that - when hit just right - can flare up like a match and flash fry an egg. (My first apartment had a few glass fragments permanently imbedded in the wall above the sink – and it was not “art”.)

But, what I really don’t understand is, why is Wrath a sin? I mean, if we are made in God’s image, and if we have to contend with the Wrath of God, then what gives? God can be wrathful but I can’t? I mean no disrespect here (I’m throwing that in so I don’t get a lightening bolt to the keister) and I can fully dig the principle that “rank hath its privileges” but I’d like to submit a comment in the Divine Complaint Department.

I looked up the definition of wrath in the Webster’s and came up with this:

Wrath (rath) n. 1, fierce anger, rage 2, vengeance

So, I know somewhere it says “Vengeance is mine sayeth the Lord.” So I’m willing to compromise. The Lord can have the vengeance part, and I’ll just keep the fierce anger and rage part. I’ll even save the rage part for PMS days and use the regular old fierce anger part for everyday use! I think that’s fair.

Really now, it’s not like wrath doesn’t get used. Right off the top of my head, I know we have “The Grapes of Wrath” and we have “The Wrath of Khan”. Geez. Grapes get to be wrathy but I can’t? And who is this Khan anyway? What makes him so special? I can see a case being made for the other five and one-half being sins (that Lust one….really now, what’s the big deal? Unless you’re Jimmy Carter, Lust Shmust. Who cares?) Greed, Sloth, Envy, Pride and Gluttony I can see those being deadly. I mean who wants to deal with a greedy, lazy, envious, prideful glutton??

But anger? Why don't we replace that with something really sinful. How’s about STUPIDITY?

Yeah. If we made Stupidity a sin then maybe us wrathful people wouldn’t get so angry.

And what about INCOMPETENCE or WHININESS? Yeah, now we’re talking. Let’s make Stupidity, Incompetence and Whininess all sins and we wrathful people would be a whole lot less wrathful. Then there's also SLOBBINESS? Let’s add Slobs to the list, too. While we’re at it lets add PEOPLE WHO ARE AS SLOW AS DEAD TURTLES to the list. I know they really burn my ass on a good day.

Personally, I think the list of Seven needs revising. It’s too out dated for one thing, and it really could use some clarification. For example, I prefer to think of wrath as just plain old justifiable anger considering all the irritating people and circumstances that are out there; and we haven’t even discussed computers. How can we have a world with computers in it and not expect a little wrath every now and then? It’s just not possible. I’m just surprised computercide isn’t number one on the list of reasons why people need to go out and buy another one. In fact, I think every computer should come supplied with it's own baseball bat. The point is “Wrathlessness” is a Utopian concept, right up there with “Sharing” and “Forgiveness”. It goes against genetic programming. We don’t want to share, we don’t want to forgive and we get "wrathy". Is wrath a worse ill than stupidity, incompetance or whining? Something that's worthy of being classified a deadly sin? Who knows. I do know it's tough on the dinnerware from time to time. I guess the bottom line is I'm not Mother Teresa. So, sue me.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Justice...Texas style

Well I was happy to hear former Enron executives Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling finally got their due.

It seems Ken Lay was a little surprised, apparently he thought his money and influence meant that he could get away with major theft and fraud. Who does he think he is, Dick Cheney?

According to Reuters:

Lay used his and the company's money to gain political power by donating heavily to candidates, particularly Republicans and especially the Bush family.

He was the biggest donor to President George W. Bush, who before the Enron scandal referred to him warmly as "Kenny Boy."

The story in Reuters quoted:

After the verdict Lay stood with his family members gathered around him and weeping loudly. Lay had no tears and tried to console them, saying, "God's got another plan right now."

Lay, 64, the son of a preacher, then clasped hands with them as they stood in a circle to pray. "We'll all come through this stronger and more reliant on God," he told them.

Uh, yeah "Kenny Boy" God does have another plan for you right now. It's called "prison".

Apparently Jeffy had some trouble with the verdict too. Reuters quoted him as saying:

"I think we fought a good fight but some things work and some things don't," he said. "Obviously I am disappointed but that is the way the system works."

Oh, of course! The system is supposed to reward theft, fraud and perjury, not punish it! How silly of us all to expect you to pay for your crimes like a common criminal, when your special. You're a corporate criminal.

No amount of jail time can make up for all the lives they've destroyed with their ruthless and calloused greed.

Here's to Ken and Jeff's new roommates! Have fun fella's!!


Monday, May 22, 2006

Happy Birthday Wakanukie!

Here's Waka as a baby. Gosh darn he's so cute.

Happy Birthday Waka. You were always Mom's favorite.


Saturday, May 20, 2006

It's Here!!

Well the "new arrival" is finally here and it's...a Sunrocket!

I, ahem...I'm all done with the other kind of new arrivals.

In case you don't know what a Sunrocket is, it's a new internet phone company. I guess it's like Vonage only they don't have the same (annoying) "catchy" little jingle and they don't seem to advertise on the Boob Tube as much.

It's so simple even the technically challenged Ham-meister could connect it.
And if it lets me give my greedy evil phone company Verizon the boot, then I'll be even happier.
So far it seems pretty good. The voice quality is very clear. (Honestly, I haven't noticed any difference) And the best part is the price. $199 a year for unlimited calling in the US, Canada and Puert Rico (if I ever get a yen to call Puerto Rico).

I have to wait until my telephone number is transferred over to give Verizon the Heave Ho.
Speaking of Ho' "Freedom Essentials" plan with Verizon works like this:

Verizon "Freedom Essentials" Plan $39.95

Other Ways to Fuck You:
USF - Long distance $1.23
Surcharge(s) $1.24
Federal Tax $1.24
NYS Tax/Local Tax $3.40
FCC Line Charge $6.40
Federal USF Surcharge $0.73
Surcharges(s) $0.22
911 Surcharge $0.35
Federal Tax $0.22
NYS/Local Tax $0.61

Total of extra Bullshit $15.64

REAL cost of doing business with Verizon $55.59

Now you see why I want to add them to the long list of "Companies I Can't Wait to Screw Back?"

I checked out Sunrocket before I turned over my credit card number and it seems the company is run by Lisa Hook, who used to run AOL's broadband division and grew them up from a mere 300,000 subscribers to over 5 million in two years. Apparently she came out of retirement to run this company.
They've had write ups in the major papers and Money Magazine, Forbes and the Techie mags as well.
But I like to go "to the source" so when the cable dude came over to repair the damage created by the furry little bastards also known as "tree rats" , I asked him about internet phone companies and he said "Thumbs Up!". All that was good enough for me.

So for a FLAT FEE of $199 a year (they also have monthly $9.95 option for 200 minutes a month which apparently includes international calls as well...if ya ever get a hankering to call Iraq, Iran or Afghanastan to find out what's really going on over there....) which INCLUDES ALL TAXES, SURCHARGES and BUTT FUCKS WITH OR WITHOUT VASALINE you too can give your greedy evil phone company the HEAVE HO.

Check them out at The cable dude told me that some of those left brain thinkers at work had switched from Vonage (which I have never tried and can't vouch for either way) to Sunrocket and liked it better. So, if you have tried Vonage and didn't like it for some reason, I can assure you this Sunrocket deal smokes, and the voice quality is no different.

So give the Ho a Heave, and save some real bucks in the process.
And it will make you more Tech saavy! Didja notice there are TWO links in this post, huh, didja???! Well...there ya go.


Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Happy Tuesday

I can't believe my last blog post was Thursday?!? Gee-sus. Where does the time go.
Rockdog sent me an e-mail that I thought was too good not to post so here it is:


Number 10 - Life is sexually transmitted

Number 9 - Good health is merely the slowest possible rate at which one dies.

Number 8 - Men have two emotions: Hungry and Horny. If you see him without an erection, make him a sandwich.

Number 7 - Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day; teach a person to use the Internet and they won't bother you for weeks.

Number 6 - Some people are like a Slinky... not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you see one tumble down the stairs.

Number 5 - Health nuts are going to feel stupid someday, lying in hospitals dying of nothing.

Number 4 - All of us could take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism.

Number 3 - Why does a slight tax increase cost you two hundred dollars and a substantial tax cut saves you thirty cents?

Number 2 - In the 60's, people took acid to make the world weird. Now the world is weird and people take Prozac to make it normal.


We know exactly where one cow with mad-cow disease is located among the millions and millions of cows in America... but we haven't got a clue as to where thousands of illegal immigrants and terrorists are located. Maybe we should put the Department of Agriculture in charge of immigration.

I kinda agree with that last one there....

Happy Tuesday!


Thursday, May 11, 2006

The Letter "L"

Ok. This is the letter Kimmy gave me. The idea of this is to think of 10 words that begin with this letter that have meaning to you in your life.

Licorice - This is one of my favorite candies (next to chocolate of course) but it has to be black licorice...none of that funny red stuff.

Love - I love love. I love love in theory. (It's the actual practice part that I have trouble with.)

Lazy - I am inherently lazy, but my bank account keeps me working...

Leather - One of my favorite smells. (Lets just leave it at that).

Lake - I'm a Cancer, so any sizeable body of water is necessary and appreciated in my life.

Liberal - Well, I'm loathe to label myself, but I suppose I tend to lean a bit this way. LOL...just a bit. (Less than you'd think).

Loophole - Something I am always looking for.

Lemon/Lemonade - One of my favorite colors, and one of my favorite drinks.

Literature - Something I cannot possibly live without.

Lavendar - My favorite flower and perfume.

Ok. That's it.
L shaped Hammy

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Destructive Little Bastards!!!

I got this image off of a "squirrel lovers" website. I am not much of a squirrel lover, even on a good day, but today these rats with bushy tails are just plain "destructive little bastards".

I haven't been able to get on the internet this week, except for a few minutes here and there. I think I visited a blog or two before getting frozen up. I couldn't figure out what the problem was so I called Nukie first and then the cable company. Well, Nukie wasn't too much help, but he was on his way out the door - so I'll cut him some slack. Wakanukie was busy trying to hide all Archie's excess dirt (long story) in various places on my property, so he was no help either. But it turned out to be a major squirrel problem. The destructive little bastards damn near ate through the cable line. But I got a new modem out of the deal - so I guess I can't complain too much.

Anyway, I have to tell you the story of Ham Jr. #1 First Communion. Just about everything that could go wrong, did go wrong, but it ended up being OK in the end.

First, the ex-Mr. Ham was being a tightwad and he didn't want to pay for a big after church breakfast, so I decided we could do a small after churchy breakfast and then have everyone else over for roast beef, potato salad and cake. Good plan, right? So I dutifully trudge to the store to get the stuff for the spread and take the two Ham Juniors with me. That was my first mistake. My second mistake was thinking "Oh, well, now that I'm here I should just do some grocery shopping." Bad idea. First of all the two Ham Juniors had me so distracted with their Ham Juniorish bullshit that I could barely remember where I was, much less why I was there. Secondly, I had so much other crap in the cart that I couldn't focus on what few items I actually NEEDED to buy. Needless to say, I got home and realized I had forgotten the little one's tights. (She goes through tights like kleenex) No problem, I thought. I'll run over and buy the tights as Edith is cutting the girls hair. (They both needed haircuts as they were looking like 60's leftovers) Before I could shuffle them over to grandma's house the phone rings and it's Edith telling me she's over Wakanukies house watching his kids because he has FOOD POISONING from ARBY'S! I told her she was going to be there until 3 AM waiting for him to come back from the ER. And...I was right. So THE MORNING OF the First Communion the little one still had to get tights, Edith had to cut the girls hair (Edith and Archie were pretty much running on no sleep at this point) and I concentrated on trying to get the girls showered and dressed and get us all to the church on time.

Well, I was concentrating on Ham Junior #1's dress and veil and shoes and tights and gloves and all the rest of it, so much, that I forgot to see if the little one had DRESS SHOES THAT FIT. Well, she didn't. At this point we had half an hour until we had to leave and I still wasn't dressed. (Mom is always the last...) So we ended up with a pair that technically fit, but whose velcro had worn off on one shoe, so that everytime she walked her shoe fell off. Not good. She shuffled through the whole morning. It was pathetic.

Once we finally got out of the church and headed to Perkins for "breakfast" it was 2 o'clock in the afternoon! We got out of there (stuffed to the gills) at 3:50 and everyone was supposed to come over at 4:00 to eat again! Well, not even I could manage that, so I called Mrs. Nukie and told them to come around 6:00 PM. Wakanukie was home in bed (besides I really didn't think he'd be up for another roast beef sandwitch...ahem.) So his representatives were told to come later.

Once we hit the door at home, the little one headed to the garbage and threw her shoes right out. It actually was rather funny...and totally justified I assure you. Ham Junior #1 looked beautiful. Father Jerry was very enthusiastic and it was a rather nice mass inspite of it's length. But most important Ham Junior #1 learned a valuable lesson: Nothing ever turns out as expected and there is no such thing as a perfect day, so just roll with it and do the best you can.

Now...where is my squirrel hunting gun....


P.S. Tomorrow is my last exam of the semester...wish me luck.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

One for the Hamster

Well, I had my lab practicum Monday in "Horrible Hettie's" class.
The guy that I asked to be my "patient" was two minutes late. That was the longest two minutes of my life.
My stomach was just doing flips. I thought Hettie was going to say I couldn't take the exam.
Out of the nine possible test examination areas we drew the card for ENT (eyes, ears, nose, throat) so lucky for me my new "toys" (otoscope and opthalmascope) came in handy.
I guess it was worth all that practice on the kids. (Me: "Come here and let me look in your ears."
Ham Junior: "Mom!!" Me: "Just stand still for heavens sake...")

So, she posted the grades yesterday and....I got 100.
I kept staring at the grade and thinking something must be wrong. Like it was really a ten or a zero or something. But it really and truly was 100.

She had told the class a few weeks ago, that in the entire history of the class a few people had managed to get 100. She said it was possible, but that it was really rare.

I walked around most of the day in semi-shock. Every once in a while I would think, "I can't believe I got 100." I kept checking the grade to see if it was changed, but it's still there...and still 100.

I think about 1/3 of the class is going to end up failing this semester. (Last semester it was 25%)

She had such a funny look on her face when I left. I really didn't know what to think. It wasn't that I thought I did that well. I chattered like a Myna bird through the entire exam. I was so nervous being watched and taped on camera that It seemed I couldn't shut up. Well, I talk to my patients anyway...but I usually don't chatter like a Myna bird....

I called one of the other nurses I work with who is also in that class. She said she got an 83. For some reason I couldn't tell her I got 100. I told her that (and I quote) "I did OK. I passed."
Sigh. Sometimes it's really hard to do really well, because it seems like you can't tell anyone about it.

So there is still the written final left. In the meantime I'm allowing myself to decompress and NOT study for a few days.

Meanwhile Ditzy Dora's class is over. I scooped an A+ in her class, although the "official version" hasn't been posted yet, I calculated my total from the posted grades.

Yesterday was a good day.

I guess every once in a while I get one.


Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Unfortunately, The Wrong People Die.

With very little notice or fanfare a great man passed away on Saturday April 29th.
John Kenneth Galbraith was a Canadian-Born economist and professor at Harvard University.
He was considered by many to be a "Liberal Thinker". Which is the Conservatives way of trying to discredit somebody, so that no one else will listen to what it is they have to say.

So what was Galbraith saying that upset Conservatives so much?
In a well known book entitled "The Affluent Society" (1958) Galbraith stated that the "free market system" in the United States was creating great personal wealth at the expense of society. He challanged that the system was sacrificing public needs such as schools and highways. (Can you say Walmart?)

He never shied away from the "label" of "Liberal" and was famous for quotes that cut to the heart of the issue at hand.

I find it interesting that when a person is labeled a liberal what usually accompanies that term is the word thinker. When a person is called a "Conservative", you don't usually see the word "thinker" after that term. The key word isn't Liberal, but Thinker.

And so, there it is, the sad passing of another very insightful man who said almost 50 years ago what was going to happen to this country, and unfortunately he was right.

Quotes by Galbraith to live by: (or just to get you thinking)

"Under Capitalism, man exploits man. Under Communism, it's just the opposite."

"The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness."

"The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking."

"Nothing is so admirable in politics as a short memory."

A man like Galbraith is worth 100 George Bushes.


Saturday, April 29, 2006

"We interrupt this program for an important announcement..."

Well, I guess I have a bit of an announcement to make. I decided to create a new blog. I tend to like to tell loooong stories and this blog doesn't always work well for those occasions. I decided to save this blog as the Bitch and Moan blog. LOL.

So, the new blog is named Onion Dribbles. It's been coming for a while, but this childhood neighborhood story thing that I posted the past few days just pushed it over the edge. The story didn't flow as well being all chopped up into parts. It was...kind of disjointed and a pain in the ass to read. LOL. So I deleted it all (no Kimmy, you haven't gone crazy) and re-posted it as my first story on Onion Dribbles. This way, if your in the mood to read a long story of whatever may tumble out of my head (or my ass depending on the critic) then Onion Dribbles is the place for you!

There is one caveat though. I still only have the same amount of time/energy/bitching potential etc. so I may elect to post a story on the other blog rather than post something on this one. But I think it will work out better in the long run.

Just do me a favor. If you read it give me some creative feedback. If it's good/bad/sucks the big one then let me know. I'm really interested in what people think of the writing quality of the story. And...just like I have hopes for this blog (which is to make people think about things) my
hopes for the other blog is that you'll be entertained from a birds eye (or bird brained) view of my life.


Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The Ultimate Recycling

Every once in a while something really strange and unexplainable happens to me. Sometimes it's kind of supernatural, sometimes it's more like a "religious experience" and other times I just don't know what category to put it in. For example, one morning not that long ago NPR had a story on the anniversary of the liberation of one of the Nazi concentration camps. I was still half asleep and hit the snooze button, but then I started "dreaming". I was a young girl, about 12 or 13 years old and I was getting off a train with a lot of other women and girls. A woman that I knew to be my mother was being led away by two soldiers and I knew I was never going to see her again. My little sister who was about 7, was pulled out of line by another soldier and when I went to go to her a soldier off to my left let the leash out on a big German Shepard who lunged at me to keep me from going to her. There was all this chaos and noise, and women were being sorted out into different groups and sections. I was separated from my sister. I "remember" lying on a bare wood planked "bed" and looking down at this pile of - what was supposed to be food- and saying to some person sitting next to me that I wasn't going to eat that garbage. They asked me if they could have mine and I said yes and rolled over. I started to cry in the "dream" and woke up sobbing. For a few minutes I could "remember" everything.
I knew that my little sister had been named after my Aunt - who was my favorite Aunt. I knew we were born near the border of France. I knew that my father was missing and that we were not as well off financially as my mother wanted everyone to believe we were. I knew we were there because somebody had turned us in. I knew that my mother was put to death shortly after we arrived at the camp and that I was put into a labor pool. I knew that my little sister was put into one of the brothels. I woke up with the feel of that camp all over me. I could "remember" how it felt to go through each day and just do what you had to do. Thinking that if you didn't die there, then one day it would all come to an end. But not knowing which would happen first.

I had a terrible time shaking off that "dream" and that morning I couldn't stop crying. I ended up calling Queen Snarfetta at work because I had to talk to somebody about it.
I don't know what to make of that experience. I don't know what to think.
It's not the first time something like that has happened to me, but it was the strongest. I was so upset that I stayed home from my first class that morning. It took a few weeks to stop thinking about it all.

I have always been drawn to the Jewish faith. I have thought about converting many times over the years and I really don't know why. I have a Mezuzah inside my doorpost (although I put it on wrong. It's not diagonal, it's vertical, and I put it on with Gorilla glue and can't take it off now) and a Menorah on my bookshelf that I bought several years ago.
I have always thought that if reincarnation were true, then we would have more "evidence" to that effect. Yet, I don't rule it out entirely - because I don't have those kinds of answers. I don't know what to think sometimes.

Maybe it was just a dream...and maybe it wasn't.
What do you think?

Leftover Ham Dinner

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Gotta laugh about it....

PMS week, ya'll....( jes warnin' ya....)

Well, I took the easy way out an just added Kimmy land to my miniscule link list. I was trying to avoid that because I felt bad about leaving out everyone else, but BubbaNukie's recent instability, coupled with my computer challenged brain has made it necessary...
So, I'll just piggy back around from her blog site....

So, I see I'm not the only one who is frustrated these days. White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan has finally thrown in the towel. Can't say I blame him, that whole speech about the Valerie Plume retribution leak not being a "real leak"...was a little pathetic even for the old Republican Spin Doctor himself.
Maybe he can save a shred of his credibility now.
I don't believe the bullshit their trying to spread about Karl Rove though....that slimy little toad monster will still have wads and wads of power and influence in the gray tinted Bushwacked White House.
Man, it's bad when the blow job guy looks good....come to think of it, he wasn't so bad after all, was he? Too bad his wife came across like such a bitch.

Well, gas prices have tricked over the $3.00 per gallon mark. On my way into job #2 I saw $3.19 per gallon. Bastards. Fucking evil greedy bastards! I say it's high time that all utility and power companies became not-for-profit! WTF! They are getting millions of tax breaks and billions of profit to fuck us up the ass royally, and that's a lot of shit in my book. Hurricanes my ass. Greed. Just plain old greed.

On the up side I have to say I loved FS5 post about the Wal-O-Caust campaign. No disrespect to the Holocaust victims, but man, there is some justification there! Personally, the Hamster refuses to shop there. I won't support that shit. I'll pay a little more or buy a little less.
Say, did you know that Wal-O-Caust has 6 family members in the World's Billionaire List? Each with a total of about $15-20 Billion in personal fortunes to their name. That's pretty damn good considering most of their employees can qualify for Medicaid....even some of the full-time workers. Nice. Very Nice.

So, King George is finding out it isn't so easy to keep the serf's down. Those Mexican's are really rallying for their rights as illegal alien citizens aren't they? Too bad I can't buy the fruit picker argument - especially when I know they are mainly working in textile mills, construction jobs, cleaning companies and furniture manufacturing jobs. The only problem is once they get "legal" and start demanding a "fair wage" they'll be pushed aside like everyone else in a low wage job and the next wave of illegals will take their place. That's OK, then they can just go on welfare and get Medicaid and free school lunches. Why not? It's becoming the "American Way" as far as I can see. The sad thing, is with all the shit going on the Mexican's are the only ones marching in the gaddam street....we all should be!! Well, I've gotta say, they sure impressed me. Don't like it, don't agree with it, but they sure do have balls.....maybe they're the few "americans" who have any left.

One good thing is the Iraqi's seem to be so busy killing each other, that they seem to be leaving the G.I.'s alone. Fucking laughable in a way. Maybe we can dress Saddam up as a Kurd and both the Shiites and the Sunni's will blast his ass for us the necessity of dealing with the rest of this kangaroo court.

On the up side Oprah is getting involved with the deplorable state of the education in the US. So is Bill Gates. Time Magazine and the Oprah show teamed up to do an expose on the rotten condition some of these schools are really in. For example one school in Chicago had a pool that hadn't seen water in 10 years, a music department with no instruments, a gym with a leaking ceiling and no useable equipment while its suburban counterpart had a cardio room, TWO Olympic sized swimming pools, an award winning music program and....well, you get the idea. The school an hour away from the White House looked like it needed to be condemned. After the Time Magazine/Oprah show aired the district found $10 million dollars to appropriate for repairs. Remind me, again? Why do we have politicians???

Maybe Oprah can add Education Secretary to the list of things she should be doing in government, along with FEMA director, and President of the United States.

Really hard not to be disgusted. What has happened to this country?