Thursday, November 26, 2009

"Post No. 676"

I sincerely hope all had a nice Thanksgiving. Here at the ol' "Elmo Plantation", we certainly did even with my mom still recovering from her pacemaker operation about a week back.

My aunt fixed dinner for us with most all the trandition dishes, including turkey, mashed potatoes, dressing, yams, black-eyed peas, cornbread, corn, and a banana pudding. A great old fashion country-type meal. Honestly, it was all I could do to finish a single serving on my plate.

We ate at mom's this time (rather than our usual trip out in the country to eat at my cousin's place), and besides my mother and wife, we had my Aunt Sally and my cousin (Sally's daughter) Leslie. Good times by all, and, most importantly, with the family.

Today I watched a little of The Macy's Parade before finishing up both yards of left-over leaves. Now with the yards done for the year I can go back on concentrating on that dirt pile in the back which I've had to neglect for a while.

I also watched a little of the Cowboys/Raiders game. Dallas was pretty much walking away with that, which sort'a pleased me as I like Dallas even though I'm not much of a football fan.

I've actually won something new here today in the way of comic books; 15+ religious comics, mostly J.T. Chick "Crusaders" series, nearly a full set of the 17 different issues, but of course those won't be arriving for some time. If I ever want to complete that set it may be difficult as the final issue (#17) had a low print run. I may just have to settle for what issues I'll get (and I already have around 4 issues of that particular title, but they are all the .59 printings, so maybe these will all be 1st.printings which all had the .39 price).

The above comic book cover is to Giggle #60, from 1948 (wow...that's 51 years ago!) with a Thanksgiving theme. Everyone be careful tomorrow on "Black Friday" while you're out shopping around for those bargains. I actually have purchased ONE Christmas gift thus far, so I'm really behind for the year. I know everyone will be looking for the best bargains they can find with the current economy.

I foresee being VERY busy at work tomorrow in retail, what with all of the shoppers, and just two of us working the shift, and BOTH of us needing to order items for our sections (Lord, I haven't had a chance to order anything for a week now due to having to make a new display last Monday plus the rest of the day spent putting out Christmas decorations, and I still have a large item that needs to be assembled! I'll never get caught up!)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

"Post No. 675!"

The above is the theatrical release poster from the 1993 flick, "Wilder Napalm" starring Dennis Quaid, Debra Winger and Arliss Howard. If you'll click the link in red it'll tell you a better summery than I could be brief about, but it's a great movie that I've been wanting to see for a good 16 years since a friend told me it was about two guys that had powers like "The Human Torch". I wasn't disapointed from that long wait. Very enjoyable, and highly recommended.

In more important things, my mother was released from the hospital today after having a pacemaker installed. Last Wednesday she had me to take her to the doctor, compaining about some pain in her left arm. Naturally her doctor was concerned about her heart and sent her to the hospital for a EKG and blood work. Seems her heart rate was way too irregular, dropping then rising too high, so Friday night she was transported from our local hospital to Elizabethtown Hardin Memorial where she got the pacemaker.

The procedure was brief (about an hour and a half at the most; some of that of which was "prep"), she got just a local so she was fully awake during the operation, and was even given a chicken sandwich and a Diet Coke to eat before she got completely off the operating table (she hadn't had anything to eat or drink since midnight before), and was back in her room before 10 A.M.!

The pacemaker is so small these days you can't even tell someone has one. Amazing how much medicine has progressed.

Got to thinking about this being the 47th. Anniversary of the assassination/death of President Kennedy. As it happened, my late brother came home that very night from his first leave from The Marine Corps. Strange how things change. Had that happened today, the country would have most likely been put on "lock down' such as it was on 9/11, anyone in the military would have had to stay on base, and it would have been treated like a suspected terrorist attack. Back then, nearly 50 years ago, it was treated as a police matter.

And... just to catch up a bit with my current sporatic blogging...

You'll notice that there's a new link in white-colored font over at the top of the column to the right. It's to one of my other, pretty much, non-working blogs, called "A Puck's Tale". I had been using this just for some personal information about me, but I decided that would be the perfect place for me to have as much of a complete resume' on line of my published work from over the past 40+ years that I could round up and list, so's...there 'tis.

It's still a "work in progress" as ifever/whenever I finally find my scanner/camera driver discs I do plan on posting a current photo of myself along with some cover reproductions and artwork.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

"Post No. 674"

Got the bill in from Debbie's emergency room visit; $725.00. Simply outrageous. The attending physician looked at her hand, put some antiseptic on it and a piece of gauze and tape, gave her a tetanus shot and sent her home. For all that was done by the attendents in the ambulance, and the hospital doctor, we could have done for next to nothing right here at home save for the shot. For that little trip in the ambulance (for two miles) and the ER visit? Over $1,200. (And people wonder why health insurance is so high.) Very sad.

Finished raking my leaves again. This time it took around 4 hours since I had to neglect them due to my job for the past 5 days. Got the gutters cleaned out as well, plus I bagged up 6 good size bags of the trash-type wood and the like from the brush pile, and brought up yet another load of sticks and limbs. There's something like 13 bags of debris awaiting pick up by the city this time, plus a pile of limbs and sticks. The yard, two hours later, looked like it needed raking again. My front yard trees are about finished falling, but there's still a pretty full tree at the rear of the house. Maybe it'll all finish faling this week and I'll only have to do this one more time. I need to remulch the leaves on mom's again too, plus, I'm sure, her gutters need cleaning out.

Stopped by both local flea markets Saturday as well as three yard sales. Bought nada at the flea markets, although one dealer did have a copy of the "Beatles Songbook Vol.2" l.p. in nice shape. Wanted $5. for it, and I did consider buying it, but finally passed as it'd only been something I'd listened to a single time before stashing it into my collection of such.

Paid $1. for a large Superman figure from the animated series (from "Justice League", I believe). Put batteries in it and it worked just fine. Has flashing heat vision (i.e., the eyes "light up"), when you move the arms down it makes a "crashing" noise, plus a sound like he's flying. Stuck him up on the shelf with some other Superman memorabilia.

One woman at the flea market had a whole basket full of "Transformers" but wanted $1-$2 each on those which would have been too much just to buy and attempt to resell on my eBay auctions (which would have been the only reason they would have interested me). Nice, however, for anyone that collected them.

Sunday I found the above pictured classic flea market find for a mere fifty cents (alright; not that one exactly as my camera's still not hooked up so I had to swipe that pic off a eBay listing, but an identical one like it). A prime early 1970's "Smiley Face" coffee mug, and, even rarer, marked made in the good ol' "U.S.A.". Funny thinking back some nearly forty years ago circa 1970 visiting a now long gone head shoppe located in Bowling Green, KY.. I was looking at some of the pin-backs they had and there was a whole basket full of Smiley face buttons for, oh, maybe 25 or 50 cents each. When I asked the clerk what they were exactly (as that was the first time I'd seen one), he told me that they were "Happy Faces", and that they were going to replace the Peace Symbol! I admit to actually buying and wearing one for a couple of years lo' dem many years ago (LOL!).

Friday, November 13, 2009

"Post No. 673"

Well, I got my printer back to working, but not before having to go to the Lexmark home page site and downloading it from there. I've yet to find a small 4"x4" plastic case with the driver discs to my printer, camera and scanner. I've tried to download the scanner and camera drivers from their company sites, but Umax doesn't support my particular scanner any more, and I can't seem to find one for the Sanyo.

Been rearranging my pc/collection room as it was getting just a bit too cluttered with various collectibles: action figures, toys, etc., etc. Packing up several large boxes to put away in storage and just changing it around a bit as every blue moon I get tired of seeing it looking the same way. Getting all of my "Beatles stuff" in one specific area of the room. It'll probably take me a good week just to do this, a little at a time, every night after work. Along the way I've found several items I've decided to stick in my next yard sale. Not sure what to do with all of the extra books I have in the room as they're getting stacked now on top of one another instead of neatly in cases, so I may be forced to store some of that as well.

My mom turned 85 years young this past Monday (the 9th.) and remains in reasonably good health. I'm amazed, quite frankly, at how well she is doing and am very thankful for that. I try to keep a pretty close eye on her and visit, at least for a few minutes, every day and call to check up on her daily. She had a very nice birthday receiving many cards and some gifts. My wife and I try to get her out of the house as often as we can as she gets bored with nothing to do besides reading and watching television (and puttering around her place).

On another note...for those who wonder why health insurance is so high? We got a bill for the ambulance ride my wife took about two weeks ago (which was basically not even needed). 2 miles to the hospital = $514.00. We don't need a government run health plan; we need health insurance that we can afford. (No one can tell me it cost on the average of $257.00 to drive any ambulance per mile.)

As this year starts coming to a close, I think back about how bad finacially we've been hit by it. It began with the television going out ($200.), then the microwave (another $100.), the riding lawn mower getting fixed ($75.), buying a used push mower ($60.), replacing gas lines ($300., and it would have been probably 3 times that much had I not done all of the manual labor laying the lines, digging the ditches, etc., plus the line was given to me free), trimming the trees ($300.), Debbie losing her job, then having to repay all of the unemployment money ($1,256.00), ambulance bill ($500.), starter for my car ($170.), cleaning out the fence row in the back yard ($75.), and we still have yet to get the ER bill (at least $500.). Along with many other misc. expensives it puts the figure at around 5 Grand, which we certainly didn't have extra, nor could afford to pay. I'm just thankful that Debbie still has at least a parttime job, and I'm still working fulltime. Otherwise, it'd been bankruptcy a long time ago.

Off this weekend. I'm sure I'll spend at least half of Saturday on the leaves and gutters.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

"Post No. 672"

Today is Debbie and my 21st. wedding anniversary. We recall the day well. It was raining and chilly. Came just a flood that night when we were staying at a motel in Bowling Green, KY. (about 35 miles from here). We ate dinner at the next door Executive Inn and stayed there fairly late dancing to their house band. The next day on the way home, I actually stopped at a comic book show that was at the old BG Mall. We've had our "ups and downs", but still together for 21 years (remarkable).

I got her a new purse, some makeup she'd been wanting and some solar-powered lights for around the sidewalk. One of the things she gave me was one of the DC "Crisis The Spectre",action figures. Pretty neat! There's some others in that series I wouldn't mind having as well such as "Dr. Fate", "The Flash", "The Black Canary" and "The Question".

Raked up and mulchd the leaves for...oh...I guess the third time this Autumn, and re-emptied the back gutters which were over-flowing (again). Later on today I really need to go down to my mom's house and do her yard as well. Thought that perhaps from us trimming our large trees last Spring I wouldn't have as many leaves, but there still seems an over-abundance of the things.

Work's still steady with our weekends in the retail still quite busy. People are buying for Christmas now. I'll actually have three days off in a row (the first time that's happened since my vacation this year back the first week in May) all around Thanksgiving. Our plans aren't definate for Thanksgiving yet, but we'll probably go up to my cousin's place in the country as usual for dinner.

I had a pc crash last week and lost ALL of my old files. It was so bad in fact that this pc had to be "zeroed out" and reloaded. But this time I've put in Windows XP. I've got everything back going pretty good save that I can't find those blamed discs for my scanner/camera/printer drivers.