Our Lady of Fatima... Pray for us.
Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament... Hear us.
Our Lady of the Rosary... Strengthen us.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Funny Guy Friday... Truth, Justice and the United Nations Way...

    I walked through the door last evening and found my wife sitting at the computer about to have a seizure. Have you seen this... have you seen this? I cannot believe this! 
    I had been on the phone most of my drive home and had not listened to the radio much, so I wondered, What did I miss? ----Did Congress raise the debt ceiling and declare the company credit card has no limits? ----Did we declare war, I mean, did we declare another kinetic military action against another Middle East country? ----Did the Redskins trade away all their draft picks for Joe Montana? (I've seen the shoe commercials regarding his "comeback.")
    No, none of that.
    No. Cheryl was disgusted because Superman has renounced his American citizenship! That's right, the Man of Steel has decided that he's "bigger than America," and will now work for the United Nations. Yeah... good luck battling tyranny and evil there.
    First of all, it is a cartoon, so relax. Let's not get carried away.
    Secondly, nobody pays attention to that stuff anyway ----except me!
    I say good riddance. The fact of the matter is that he never was a United States citizen anyway. He was an illegal alien in the truest sense of the word. He dropped in on us from the planet Krypton, for goodness sakes. We know this because in a recent episode, Donald Trump forced him to reveal his birth certificate.
    And have you watched any of the new cartoons? Superman is just one of several super heroes in the Justice League. He doesn't even have his own show anymore. Seriously, does a guy who is faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, and able to leap tall buildings in a single bound really need a posse?
    I haven't even mentioned the fact that he can fly, has super strength, and has every type of super vision imaginable. Shouldn't Comrade Superman be able to kick butt without all these other hangers on.
    He isn't even the best superhero in the group.
    Batman is regularly pulling his sorry super butt out of the fire. Batman, by the way, is not really a superhero at all, he is just a cool rich guy. A real American, who took advantage of the great capitalist system in which we live. He cannot fly, has no super speed, normal human strength, and if truth be told, he probably wears reading glasses.
    He just uses all of his hard-earned cash to make incredibly cool gadgets. Is anything cooler than a good ol' American-made muscle car, a.k.a the batmobile. And how great is it that he has a butler that helps him misdirect all the hot chicks that are after millionare Bruce Wayne?
    And what's up with Superman's alter ego?... Does anybody even read a newspaper anymore? Of course not, but there is Monsiour Clark Kent, reporting for duty every day at the Daily Planet. I mean, I think that Clark Kent is really Superman----it is soooo hard to tell with that great disguise of his. You know the dark-rimmed glasses and the uh, er, the umh, well, the uh, dark-rimmed glasses.
    Have you ever wondered how good the investigative reporters are at that rag, if they can't even figure out that their co-worker in the dark-rimmed glasses with the body of Adonis, is, in fact, Superman. I mean, Lois Lane has had to have seen him without the glasses a time or two, don't you think?
    Senor Superman's main nemesis is Lex Luther, another regular mortal with regular human traits. If Superman were really all that super, shouldn't he have been able put this guy out of our misery by now?
    Of course, he hasn't because he is soft on crime. He believes we can rehabilitate the wretch. We can't---he is a criminal mastermind set out to control the world.
    Wonder Woman is tougher on criminals.
    Which brings me to one particular disturbing episode where Wonder Woman and Superman were tricked into thinking that the other was a monster, and they ended up fighting each other. It was a stand off! Can you imagine a stand off with a girl?---sure an Amazonian girl, but a girl all the same. Perhaps Fraulein Superman would be more appropriate.
    Anyway, from here on out, Chairman Supermao is no longer my favorite superhero. From here on out, I will pledge my allegience to Captain America.
    What's that? He, too, abandoned America, and actually changed his name to Nomad for four episodes before changing it back? It appears this sissy superhero discovered that he could, in fact, support Americans without supporting all of America's policies. Too late. He's out.
    Okay, I will reconsider my position on a girl superhero and go with Wonder Woman as my favorite. What's that? She recently changed her costume in order to remove the stars so as not to look too much like the American flag? She's out----although the costume is still quite fetching, so I have not elected to abandon her altogether.
    I know... the Incredible Hulk. No, I will not go green! Unfortunately, this also excludes the Green Hornet and the Green Lantern.
    Wow, where does that leave me?
    I heard the movie Thor was coming out soon. Perhaps I should go with the blonde Nordic god. Forget about it, he is probably from Sweden, and if anybody ends up working with the U.N., it would be the blonde guy from Sweden.
    I know, I know... I will put my faith in my fellow man. Perhaps an athlete, or a politician or an actor. Good fellows who are immune from their own personal Kryptonite. What are the chances that they will wind up letting me down?
    On second thought, maybe it would be better if I, too, just stopped paying attention.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

While America watches "Obama Puppet Theatre"... Evil rages on...

     ... And it's closer and more terrifying than you think.
     Also, the second video features the new proposed Passport Application from the State Department. It is literally impossible to fill out. They haven't specified exactly who would be required to do so.
     Is this an attempt to keep people in this country? Or perhaps, it is a chance to "undocument" legitimate American citizens.
     Stay awake. And don't be distracted.

"Certificate of Live Birth" revealed... Obama Puppet Theatre continues...

     See it here, from the Blaze.
     Always, always watch the other hand. The Fed Chairman is set to hold his first time ever press conference today. America is in deep, deep financial peril.
     Do not be distracted.
     Incidentally, after the president released his birth certificate, he held a press conference announcing that it was best to put all this business behind us and get back to governing.
     Then he promptly gassed up Air Force One, flew to Chicago to do the Oprah show, and attended three fundraisers.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Happy Anniversary Honey...

     I can't believe it's been nineteen years!
     I remember our wedding day like it was yesterday.
     I was living at my parents' house, and had awakened that day to Christmas music playing downstairs. I know it was April, but, hey, we liked Christmas music. I sat on the couch in the kitchen and did my nails. The hair stylist came to do my updo. Then, I put on the most beautiful wedding dress I could find, went to the church, and pledged my fidelity to the greatest guy I had ever known.
     Mark... here are 19 things I love about you... in no particular order... Believe me there are many more...
~ your faith ~ your fairness ~ your sense of humor ~ your diligence ~ your friendliness ~ your kindness to kids ~ your love for your family ~ your love for our family ~ your goodness ~ your trustworthiness ~ your love for me ~ your sacrificing ways ~ your knowing the difference between right and wrong ~ your defense of the unborn ~ your humility ~ the way you play with the kids ~ and of course, your bloop bloop eyes ~
     Happy Anniversary. I love you.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Funny Guy Good Friday... But it's Fenway Park...

    Imagine being ten years old and being offered, perhaps, a once in a lifetime opportunity to play baseball at Fenway Park. Well, not exactly the Fenway Park, but a replica of Fenway Park at the Ripken Baseball Academy in Aberdeen, Maryland.
    Our son Matthew has been invited to play with a team this weekend in a tournament because some of the team's regular players will be out of town over the Easter holiday.
    For those that have never heard of the Ripken Academy, it hosts tournaments and camps throughout the year. It has several fields that are replicas of some of the historic major league baseball parks.
    However, due to the number of teams that participate in the tournaments, they also have to play some games at a nearby college.
    The schedule came out earlier this week, and the team's first game is this morning at one of the "satellite" locations, but their second game is later in the day, at 2:30 pm, at Fenway Park---home to Matthew's favorite major league baseball team, the Boston Red Sox.
    How cool is that?
    Not cool enough apparently, because, barring a miracle on the level of our Saviour's resurrection, he will not go to that game.
    You see, today is Good Friday, and Matthew is scheduled to be an altar server at 3 pm at our church for Stations of the Cross-----and Cheryl is his mother.
    Have you ever been in a situation as a parent when your kids drop "hints" about something that they want, without actually directly asking you for what they want? You know... they recite how great something would be... you know... like if if they were ever given... you know... the opportunity to do something that they know that you are... like... never going to allow to happen. Come on, it happens to all parents and the recitation will go on until you finally blow up and yell, THE ANSWER IS NO!
    Well, poor Cheryl has been going through a bit of that this week. She has heard it all, from it being the home stadium of his favorite team... that he may never get this opportunity again... that the Green Monster is reachable for a left-handed hitter with a little bit of power to the opposite field---someone, oh I don't know, someone like Matthew.
    The poor girl has been getting it pretty hard. A full court blitz of reasons why he should be able to play. I mean, there were times that I felt sorry for her. I suppose I should have stopped the constant chirping, but I let it go. In fact, you might even say that I was responsible for it.
    Oh... did I fail to mention that it was not Matthew bugging her? No, he is a bit dissapointed but he has not said a word.
    No, I am ashamed to admit it, but it was me.
    I have been doing the lobbying with my descriptions of the great historic parks and the re-told stories from our annual father and son trips to the real Fenway Park. I have even resorted to opposite field power that does not really exist. I mean, I have been a complete brat!
    Yesterday morning, I thought that I had made some headway, when Cheryl stated that I was the "spiritual head of the family" and whatever I decided, she would go along with. Great, I said, then you will join us at Fenway Park on Friday afternoon. It was at this point that my girl blew up and yelled, MARK, THE ANSWER IS NO!
    I don't think that she thinks that I am the "spiritual leader of the family" at all. In fact, I  think that she thinks that she is the "spiritual leader of the family." I think that she just said that "spirtitual leader" thing in an effort to somehow guilt me into doing the right thing. You would think that after 19 years of marriage, she would know better than to try to guilt me into something, especially when that something involves baseball.
   By the way, if you see Cheryl this week, wish her a happy anniversary on April 25th---don't tell her, but I got her a lovely weekend getaway in Aberdeen, Maryland to celebrate the occasion. She will love it!
   Anyway, it reminds me of the time my brother's son was invited to take part in a breakfast celebrating the Washington Post All-Met athletes. The breakfast was on the same day my nephew was scheduled to leave to go to the beach for a few days. My brother gave him the option to attend the breakfast or not.
   My nephew had been the year before, and so elected to forego the breakfast and head to the beach. My brother told him that, no, he would, in fact, be going to the breakfast, not the beach. When my nephew protested that he was given the choice and he made his choice, my brother replied, I gave you the opportunity to make the right choice and you didn't so I will make the right choice for you. 
   It is pretty simple really. It is what good parents----and good spouses do. They right the wrong.
   Matthew will learn what is really important during the Holiest week of the year. That our faith is not something that we just pull out when it is convenient. In fact, there are times when it can be inconvenient.
    But we honor our faith commitments, we pray, we give of our time and of our resources, and we worship. Perhaps we use these types of opportunities to show others how much our faith means to us. At all times, we give Him thanks for all of the opportunities that He does provide----even the opportunities that we may not be able to enjoy.
    We do these things every week, but especially we do these things this week!
    The fact is that there are more than one hundred altar servers in our church and Father Parry selected Matthew for this service. This, too, may be a once in a lifetime opportunity.
   Have a happy and blessed Easter!

   For the record, it is official, I have decided that Matthew will play Friday morning, but miss Friday's afternoon game at Fenway Park.
   That is, unless, of course, Father Parry is a Red Sox fan, and he just happens to hear, from some anonymous source, that Matthew has this opportunity, and he then intervenes and grants us some type of special baseball dispensation and.........
   Get thee behind me Satan!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Fiscal farce...

     farce  n. -  ludicrous empty show; mockery; ridiculous sham -  far-ci-cal  adj.
     Sometimes there's not enough soap at the end of the day.
     Let's recap the spending tug-of-war among the Keystone Cops in Washington, shall we?
     Federal discretionary spending must have annual approval from the House of Representatives. "No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in consequence of appropriations made by law." Article 1, Section 9, U.S. Constitution. (Mandatory spending is built in to certain laws and needs no yearly approval. All spending in this budget deal was discretionary, meaning it needs reauthorization each year.)
     Congress is required by law to pass a budget every fiscal year (October through the next October).
     Before last year's midterm elections, Congress was under complete control of the Democrats. They refused to pass any budget at all for Fiscal Year 2011, which we are now halfway through. This is one of their major responsibilities, and they bailed because spending America into oblivion, as they have been doing, would have been unpopular right before the midterm elections.
     In the absence of an annual budget, the now-Republican-controlled House has been passing a series of continuing resolutions to keep the government funded.
     The president proposed 1.6 trillion dollars in spending for this fiscal year. That's up from last year's spending. The Democrats could have passed that budget easily last year.
     So a week or so ago, we had a so-called "big budget battle," because now the more fiscally responsible Republicans are in charge.
     They had a clear mandate to cut spending. And. They. Blew. It.
     In this "historic deal" the Republicans agreed to "historic cuts" amounting to what they claim was about 38 billion dollars.
     1.6 trillion dollars is equal to 1,600 billion. So, out of 1600, the Congress agreed to cut 38.
     38/1600 = .02375. That comes to less than two and a half percent.
     As the week unfolded, we learned that the 38 billion was actually only about 350 million in new cuts. Wow. That is some belt tightening.
-          350,000,000
     It is actually more like a rounding error.
     It's as if you were looking to purchase a car for 16,ooo dollars, and the guy offered you three dollars and fifty cents off... And then you paraded around the neighborhood claiming that you got some kind of unprecedented deal of a lifetime. You would look like what you are. A fool.
     Or worse.
     Have you seen the National Debt clock? It's in my sidebar. Take a long look. No way we pay that back with more of these great $3.50 deals.
     Oh, and by the way, not raising spending by an additional 350 million is not actually a cut... it is just spending more... but just not as much more. Only in the twisted minds of self-serving politicians is that a cut. Because the president proposed so much of an increase over last year... and those savvy fiscal hawks didn't quite give him all he wanted... they refer to it as a cut.
     Be sure of this: We are spending more this year than last year. That is an increase. Not a cut.
     The Republican leadership failed to do what the voters last November sent them there to do.
     Instead, they agreed to more reckless spending. We told them we have had enough. They did not listen. And they must think we are fools, too. Because they tried to spin it like they did the responsible thing.
     They are weak. They are fearful. They are irresponsible. They are miserably and contemptibly inadequate.
     Not all of the Republicans, but to be sure, the leadership.
     And to make matters worse, they agreed to keep funding the slaughter of hundreds of thousands of babies this year.
     The Democrat leadership are completely complicit in their destruction of our economy and the promotion of the culture of death. But the Republicans were supposed to stand against this. They did not.
     The media looks at this all through the lens of political winning and losing. First, they said Boehner and the Republican leadership won, because of the "historic cuts." Then they said that the president won because he got pretty much all of his spending.
     They still don't get it.
     More spending is winning? In that case, We the People lose.
     There really is not enough soap at the end of the day.
     Stay tuned. The president will soon go to Congress and ask them to raise the debt ceiling. I won't hold my breath that the leadership on either side will do the right thing. I wonder how they will spin it anyway.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Funny Guy Friday... Setting the Budget...

   As we prepared our taxes this year, Cheryl and I decided to set a budget for the rest of the fiscal year. As a result of this decision, I have been paying special attention to the recent discussions in Washington D.C. and have decided that I will use some of the strategies of our own beloved elected officials to help us come up with an acceptable family budget.
   My first step was to prioritize the budget issues. As a result, I requested that each family member identify two special budgetary items and estimate as to what portion of our budget should be dedicated to those two items. I picked food and shelter, and we decided to dedicate 40% of the budget to those issues. We were off to a good start.
   Cheryl insisted on charitable donations and Irma, the cleaning lady. I can understand one of these interests, but do we really need to keep giving to the church? Anyway, together they combined for 20% of the family budget.
   Grace went with great vacations and beauty supplies, coming in at a 15% of the budget. I like vacations, and 14% for beauty supplies didn't seem unreasonable---anything for my baby girl.
   Matthew shocked us all with a request for an indoor baseball facility. I had to explain that qualifies as a special request outside of the budget, and we are going to require some clever fundraising for that project. But not to worry, Daddy has been paying attention, and I have some ideas on how we can raise some cash for that project! So after a short filibuster, Matthew went with sports and entertainment at another 15% of the budget.
    Noah, our freshman delegate to the family quickly requested art supplies and candy at a modest 5% of the budget.  Noah is my man----I love fiscally conservative, albeit naive, little  freshman!
    Wait a second, we have not included the cost of our interests in the condo in Ocean City or the townhouse in Towson. We have not included transportation costs, which I guess may be going up here in a few months.  We have not included medical and insurance costs. We have not even included our monthly household bills. We have not included the cost of holidays and gift giving. We entertain a lot, and we have not set aside any money for that. Wow, those things are going to take up about 55% of our income. Lets do some math: 40% + 20% + 15% + 15% + 5% + 55% = 150%.
    Well, you may think that this is a problem, but if you do, you have not been watching the news. Based on my research on the federal budget, WE ARE RIGHT ON TARGET!
    So now what? How do I make a 100% of my salary pay for 150% of my expenses?
    First, I find some more money. I start with what I did not spend in the prior fiscal year.  We did not refinish our bathroom like we had discussed... so I saved approximately $25,000 (I am using our our highest bid for budgetary reasons). We will home school this year so I did not spend any money on private schools (forget about the fact that the kids went to public schools---the fact remains, we could have sent them to private school and chose not to), so we saved another $21,000. So far we are doing great. But there is more.
    I saved money on repairs to our Honda Odyssey last year by getting rid of it five years ago. Seems silly but the fact remains we did not spend money on that vehicle, so according to the rules of Washington D.C., I get to count that as a savings. Add an additional $5,000 to the coffers.
   We thought about going to Las Vegas for our anniversary, but did not so we saved another $7,500. On second thought, that would have been a great trip, so make it an even $10,000 in savings.
   We also just decided that we are going to save $25,000 in 2011. This extra money will be helpful in meeting our other budgetary goals.
    So if my math is correct, just from these few line items, I have an extra $86,000 for our budget.
    Whew, these savings look pretty darn good. One problem though. I don't... actually... have... that... money. Not a problem at all, as I stated earlier, I have been paying attention to our fiscally responsible leaders. Based on my research, I now have two options.
    First, we could go to our basement and print some money. This, of course, is ridiculous. Everybody knows that if you just keep printing money, the value of the dollar will plummet. This is a silly option that no one but six-year-old freshman delegate Noah would champion. No, I take that back, even Noah would not do such a silly thing as print money. What was I thinking?---only a fool would do that. On to option two....
    I need to go somewhere and borrow that money. This should be no problem at all. There is a nice Chinese fellow that has loaned me a ton of money in the past. Hey, wait a minute, if this Chinese fellow loaned me a bunch of money in the past, shouldn't I have included the payments that I make to him in my family budget?
    Naaaah! Why would we do that, it will give us less money in our budget! They don't do it in Washingon, so why should I?
    Cheryl suggested a third option, that we spend less. Wow, do you really think that will work? Do you think that if we spend what we make, that if we live within our means, that we might come out ahead?  She suggested that we spend less on vacations, that we stop eating out, that we only buy what we need, and we use what we already have.
    I had to explain to her that these cuts to the family budget are draconian.
    I don't know exactly what that word means, but it is a word that I heard a lot during the budget debate. I think it means that if a cut makes sense, but would mean that someone would have to go without something that they really really really....really like, then the cut is draconian.
    I was able to offer an acceptable compromise to her outrageous proposal----I told her that I would stop buying those pecan twirls that I get about once a week when I stop to get gas on my way into work. This little bit of horse trading was just enough to get the family budget approved.
    I did get one concession... the big pecan twirl compromise does not kick in until December, just in time for the 2012 budget debate.
    As you can all imagine, we are looking forward to the rest of the year as we have some serious money to spend. But I really feel bad about that indoor baseball facility for Matthew. After all, he deserves it, he is a good boy and dare I say, is entitled to a nice indoor baseball facility. So instead of saying no, I have decided that every reader of this blog will be charged a small fee every time that they log on to the Cherylyouaremine website---you can refer to it as a blog tax if you like.
   By analyzing taxes that were never actually assessed in the same fashion as the President and Congress analyze taxes that were never actually assessed, I can honestly say that it has cost me hundreds of thousands of your dollars by not previously taxing you. That's correct, it has cost me hundreds of thousands of dollars because I have not taken your money.
    You're welcome!
    Don't worry, I will invest (that's another word that I thought that I knew the meaning of but now I am not so sure) the money in the future and in future worthy projects---like an indoor baseball facility in my son's precinct.
    So if I were you, I would budget for this new blog tax. It's really easy to do, you can call me if you need any tips and if you want, I can introduce you to my Chinese friend.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Friday, April 8, 2011

Funny Guy Friday... Ramblings from "little Markie"...

    My little man Noah is playing baseball on a team for the first time. Actually it is coach pitch, but close enough. To my surprise, he is better than I anticipated. We have been practicing and I must say, he swings the bat pretty well---even hits the ball occasionally, he catches most of what I throw at him, and he has a decent arm. He should do just fine.
    Tonight, I went to his first practice, and as I watched a bunch of six-year-olds play baseball, I wondered if other people think of stupid stuff as much as I do.
    For instance, I actually told my wife that I would dominate if I played on this team. Those kids would not have a chance if I got up to bat. And it is not just six-year-olds, I think that I would be effective in any league where the kids are 10 or under. Man, I wish I could have the baseball skills that I have as an adult, but look like I was a six-year-old. That would be awesome. I can't possibly be the only idiot that thinks this way, can I?
    As I watched practice, I thought that Noah's new coach was not very concerned about positioning his players. One kid was hitting and seven others were all standing around the shortstop position. This "shift" was occurring with a right-handed hitter who could not even pull an underhand pitch, for crying out loud. In fact, the batter hit every ball to the right side of the infield, and all the kids standing at short would run to the other side of the infield to jump on the ball as if they were saving the rest of the team from a hand grenade. Then, they all got up off the ground and ran back over the the shortstop position.
    Noah is the smartest kid on the team, as he suggested that "just the kid closest to the ball should go and get it, instead of the entire swarm.'' He actually used the word swarm.
    That's good leadership, but if I were the six-year-old captain of this team, I would position my teammates. I would take charge and demand that my little teammates play their own darn position. That, or they could just get out of my way while I make every play. You know... if I were... you know... six... but could play like an adult.
    If I could just shrink myself, I am confident that my little six-year-old super-human body would get on base every time. Heck, I could bunt my way onto base every time if I wanted to.  Oh yeah, I forgot to say that in my stupid fantasy world, I can also run really fast with my tiny little six-year-old legs.
    And get this... Noah's team had some mom catching batting practice. If I were to get on, I would  steal every base on this lady. She would have no chance to throw me out. Even if she did snap off a good throw, none of these tiny little buggers could catch it. God gave us two hands so we don't drop throws! 
   And I also thought that if given the opportunity to time travel... but still play like an adult... I could pitch way better than this coach. It was as if he were trying to hit their bats with the ball. No six-year-old would be able to touch me. I mean no six-year-old could touch the six-year-old me. Man, I would be working the corners of the plate and snapping off breaking balls every now and again. How cool would it be if little Markie were to throw a curve ball that had all his little opponents jumping out of the batter's box like big old scaredy cats? I would be a tiny little six-year-old with a big old cannon for an arm.
    As I read this, I realize that it kind of makes me look a little silly. I mean, it is coach pitch, so even if I solved the time travel problem, I wouldn't be allowed to pitch anyway, and they don't even allow bunting or stealing. However, I would still be the best hitter in the league, so I would still have that going for me.
   Cheryl just read this and asked if I really wish that I were six years old again. The answer, of course, is no. But not for any reason that you might expect, like I love my life now or I wouldn't want to go through the awkward teen years again.
    No... the only reason I can think of is that with my super six-year-old baseball skills, playing with a bunch of bumbling little six-year-olds would drive me crazy.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A room with a view...

     Once again, my friend Joanne comes through. She sent me this story (author unknown). Joanne, when are you going to start a blog? Thank you for your constant thoughtfulness.
     Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon to help drain the fluid from his lungs. His bed was next to the room's only window.  
     The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back. 
     The men talked for hours on end.
     They spoke of their wives and families, their homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military service, where they had been on vacation. 
     Every afternoon, when the man in the bed by the window could sit up, he would pass the time by describing to his roommate all the things he could see outside the window. 
     The man in the other bed began to live for those one hour periods where his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity and colour of the world outside. 
     The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake. Ducks and swans played on the water while children sailed their model boats. Young lovers walked arm in arm amidst flowers of every colour and a fine view of the city skyline could be seen in the distance. As the man by the window described all this in exquisite details, the man on the other side of the room would close his eyes and imagine this picturesque scene.
     One warm afternoon, the man by the window described a parade passing by. Although the other man could not hear the band - he could see it in his mind's eye as the gentleman by the window portrayed it with descriptive words.  
     Days, weeks and months passed. 
     One morning, the day nurse arrived to bring water for their baths only to find the lifeless body of the man by the window, who had died peacefully in his sleep. She was saddened and called the hospital attendants to take the body away. 
     As soon as it seemed appropriate, the other man asked if he could be moved next to the window. The nurse was happy to make the switch, and after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone. 
     Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up on one elbow to take his first look at the real world outside. He strained to slowly turn to look out the window beside the bed. 
     It faced a blank wall.
     The man asked the nurse what could have compelled his deceased roommate who had described such wonderful things outside this window. 
     The nurse responded that the man was blind and could not even see the wall. She said, 'Perhaps he just wanted to encourage you.' 
     There is tremendous happiness in making others happy, despite our own situations. Shared grief is half the sorrow, but happiness when shared, is doubled. If you want to feel rich, just count all the things you have that money can't buy. 

Friday, April 1, 2011

Funny Guy Friday...My Swan Song!

    I have racked my brain for hours to come up with this week's Funny Guy Friday and have come up with nothing. I have always thought that when a week goes by and nothing funny happens in my life, I would quit writing this silly column. This is the week when it all comes to an end.
    I will admit that a few funny things happened, but nothing that I can really write an entire column about.
    For instance, I really have become addicted to the Angry Birds app on my son's ipod. I play it when I wake up and play it as soon as I get home from work. The other day, Cheryl took the kids out and I was still in bed, in my underwear, playing Angry Birds. When they came home two hours later, I was downstairs sitting on the couch, still in my underwear, still playing Angry Birds. The pathetic thing was that I defended myself by stating that I at least had made it downstairs.
   This isn't funny so much as it is sad.
   Then there was the family game we call Would You Rather? I am sure every family has some version where you give two equally bad options and everyone has to pick which of the bad options they would take. For instance: Would you rather have your arm cut off by a chainsaw... or your leg bitten off by a shark? Now, pick one and you can't say neither! That's the game. We played this week, so now you and your family can feel free to enjoy.
    Anyway, Cheryl hates this game and insists on two nice options such as: Would you rather smell a rose... or smell a daisy? Wake me when it is over. Who cares?
    Again, not really all that funny.
    I fell asleep during a trial this week. That is kind of funny but not much more to it than that. Somebody should, in fact, wake me before it is over! I am sure my client would appreciate it. We won the trial by the way.
    I thought about writing about how the United States bombed Libya and then in an effort to somehow minimize our involvement, we turned the whole process over to NATO. I feel sorry for the poor country that funds that organization and provides resources and soldiers for the NATO forces. Wait a second, that would be us or should I say U.S.  We turned our troops back over to us so we can say that we aren't really all that involved. Very clever but starting a war and then turning over the command of that war back to us is not really funny.
    I do like Kinetic Military Action, though. That is funny. That is stupid funny.
    But that stuff is politics and I leave that topic up to my beautiful right wing wife.
    Grace told a funny story about a kid at school that has a broken foot and actually brought a note from his doctor that said that in the event of an emergency, two teachers have to carry him down the steps. Are you kidding me? Those doctors have too much time on their hands if they even think to write that note. I pictured two teachers sitting in a glass box with the sign out front reading, "In case of emergency, break glass."  That's it though, that's the whole story.
    Baseball has started and I had to cut kids from the team that I am coaching. Definitely not funny. Cheryl asks if any kids cried and I always say that the only one crying was me.
    Noah is playing baseball this year and he has informed me that at the age of six, he does not need to practice hitting because he "has that part of the game all figured out." In a moment of humility, he does concede that his fielding could use a little work though. What the heck, if he gets a hit every time, he can just be a DH.  Cute and funny, but the season has not started yet, so, not that much more to it.
   I asked Matthew if anything happened funny with him this week and he announced that this week was a "solemn week" for him. I suppose ten-year-olds having a solemn week is funny in a weird sort of hide the ropes and razor blades kind of way. Don't really want to write about that, though.
   Cheryl is PMS'ing---NOT. FUNNY. AT. ALL.  
    So, that is it, I am officially retired, and this will be my last Funny Guy Friday.  I hoped to make it to a year's worth, but forty five weeks is a pretty good run. I hope that you have enjoyed my musings. I bid you all a fond farewell!

    Happy April 1st. See you next week!   
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