Thursday, December 20, 2012

Thankful Thursday, I don't believe

There are so many things in this world that are fake these days. Someone said that you can't put anything on the internet if it isn't true. That in itself is so untrue. I think that 90% of the information on line is fake and the rest is blown out of proportion by the media. I never thought that a day would that you couldn't believe what you read in a news paper but that day has arrived and it came with a bang.

So I don't believe anything I read in the paper, on line or anything I see on TV. Especially those "reality" shows. If you didn't already know it, those shows are fake. Yes the people are real and the shows somewhat revolve around their normal lives but they are scripted and those people are doing crazy things just to boost ratings.

I also don't believe in UFO's, free things, that Honey Boo Boo will ever amount to anything normal, and I don't believe that the path to Heaven goes through the front door of a church. It can but that comes with conditions.

I have a problem with some churches these days. When I go to church, I look around when we are singing songs. Most of the time what I see are expressionless or sad faces staring into the hymnal, singing words with little or no feeling. If I see that in a church, I have to wonder if these people left their hearts at the door. When I go to church I want to rejoice and praise God when I sing. I think we should all be happy and feel glorious that we can be there and praise God and we should rejoice in doing so. I may be the only one that feels this way but I think you should leave church feeling uplifted and renewed. I mean we just spent time with God.

So the front door to a church can be a path to Heaven but you have to come out arm and arm with Jesus. And I think that you should feel good about it so that is why I am happy in church.

So today I am thankful that I can worship God in the manner of my choosing. And yes I like the more modern church where people greet one another, they smile and make you feel welcome and you leave feeling good about yourself and life in general.

Don Williams said it best in a song;

I don't believe that Heaven waits
For only those that congregate,
I like to think that God is love
He's down below
He's up above,
He's watching people
Everywhere
He knows who does
and doesn't care

Have a great day,
Greg

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Laughing and Crying

They are both emotional releases and sometimes I have trouble deciding which one to do.

Yesterday at work, I got into a heated discussion with one of our electricians. Let me give you the background first. There is this pump/motor combination that isn't working and needs to be removed so that I can send it in for repairs. Picture a pool pump that is bolted to a frame with 4 tiny bolts. It really is as simple as that. So the question is who should remove it? An electrician because they do have to remove the wires and they have the technology to remove the tiny bolts and hoses. Or have a mechanic do it but they wouldn't be able to remove the wires legally so they would have to call that electrician to the scene anyway.

Case one would take two electricians, one to do the work and the other one to complain about having to work. Case two would take one mechanic to do the work and two electricians to watch the mechanic and then one of them would have to remove the wires. Pretty simple in either case but we went with case one but that was two weeks ago. That's right, two weeks to get a 20 minute job done.

So  yesterday this electrician comes up to me and says; What's the deal with this motor. Playing dumb I said what motor. He then got all uppity about it and started.  going off about it not being their job to remove bolts. That;s when we got into the heated discussion but the final icing on the cake was when he said;

"A motor aint nothing but a mechanical device that just happens to have wires going to it" "Everything here is mostly mechanical"

Hmmmm that's when I wanted to say "then why do we need you?" But I just shook my head and walked away. Smiling.

Yesterday I also found out about the passing of a friend of mine.  She actually died early Saturday morning and it came as a huge shock since I just spoke with her last week and she was doing great. It saddened me to hear of this and I gave it a lot of thought overnight. I tried to think of just one thing positive about her leaving and then it hit me. Myrna loved children. She used to be a school teacher and spent most of her free time with her grandkids and the neighborhood kids. I got to thinking that maybe Myrna was so distraught by Friday's event that she went to be with those children. She was that type of person. She would give her life to help out a child.

She died of natural causes but I wonder if when God comes for us if he asks if we want to go or not. Maybe He gives us a choice at that last moment. Just food for thought.

Have a great day,
Greg

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Why Why Why?

I am saddened by the recent events in Connecticut. The fact that a man could kill another person let alone a child just baffles me. And now it seems that everyone is looking for answers. Why would a man do this? We may never know the answer to that question but the alarming fact is that these kinds of things are becoming more and more common. They used to happen about once every 10 years, then about once a year and now it seems like about once a week. Is this really the end? Is it going to turn into a big free for all gun battle in our streets? I surely hope not.

In the wake of this disaster, many people are calling for gun control. There may be a little truth to that reasoning in that if you were able to take away every gun from every American, there would be no more gun killings. However there would still be sick people and I am sure they would use other forms of weapons. We could take away every knife too and stop knife killings. Of course we would have to take away all forms of explosives, poison, drugs, electricity, even rocks just to make it totally safe. But now that I think of it that wouldn't alleviate the possibility of someone killing you with their bare hands. So maybe gun control isn't the answer.

In almost all of these cases, there were some signs that something was wrong with these people. A friend, co-worker or family member knew that this person wasn't right. But in most of these cases no one reported their odd actions. No one wanted to get involved. Where I work, we have a hotline to report such things but if you call the hotline, you are the one put on trial. They will say that they can take an anonymous report but that it would be better to give your name, dates and times of events. Basically anonymous reports will be filed in a remote location where they will never be looked at or they will simply be tossed out. And if you are foolish enough to give your name you are put on the watch list for not being a team player.

I believe the only answer is to make the punishment so bad that it isn't worth doing the crime. When someone does something like this the first thing they should do is NOT release the person's name. Take away their fame. Call them a slug, or whatever bad name you want but never say their name. In this case the person was killed so that would be the end of his story and we could concentrate on the victims. As it stands right now many of the news reports are on this tick on the butt of society, making him and his family famous. And there are other crazies like him thinking "wow, no one will take me seriously now but if I were to do something like this look how famous I would be"

The next thing that I think should happen in a case like this where the slug is obviously guilty is that there should be no trial. I think there needs to be an immediate death penalty and I prefer something like hanging. I think the public needs to know that this type of thing will not be tolerated and that it will be dealt with immediately. No judge, jury, no crazy defense and no lingering fame for the shooter. Just a quick hanging with a bag over his head so no one knows his name. Does it really matter why at this point? We have been asking why for for all these years and it isn't getting us anywhere. We need to ask how we can prevent things like this from happening in the first place.

I don't know if this is a coincidence or not but have you noticed that they have made punishing our kids wrong? It is wrong to teach about God in the classroom. It is wrong to teach leadership and values, we must now teach equality and freedom of expression. Maybe, just maybe if this guy had been punished when he did something wrong instead of making excuses for his actions, he would have known that there was a consequence for doing something like this. And maybe just maybe if he had been a little closer to God he wouldn't have been so close to Satin. Is it too late to change America? I don't think so but WE must make a stand and quit making excuses. That's just my opinion.

Have a great day and pray for someone you know,
Greg

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Thankful Thursday

As always I am thankful for so many things and not just on Thursdays. Today I am thankful that my wife is recovering quickly from her hand surgery. It isn't easy working all day and then coming home and being Mr. Mom. They will be taking the bandages off next Wednesday but she is already able to do a few things to help out. Thanks for all your prayers.

Have a great day,
Greg

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

I'm not surprised.



I read an article yesterday that said a large percentage of the fish sold in NY is misidentified. In other words people are buying what they think is one kind of fish and in fact getting another kind. And I am not surprised. This reminds me of something that happened a very long time ago.

My father used to do fish fry’s in Daytona back in the 60’s and early 70’s. It started as a lifeguard thing and was usually at the Daytona lifeguard station in Eleanor Village but he sometimes went to other locations. I enjoyed working with him so I was often his helper. Not only did I make a little money doing it (usually paid in sodas and candy) I also enjoyed the scenery if you know what I mean.


The menu was usually the same: Fried Mullet, Hushpuppies, Coleslaw, Baked beans and Iced Tea. Dad’s fish fry’s were famous and there were even articles written about them in the local paper. If you never had fresh fried mullet, you are really missing something. When cooked fresh and cooked right it is awesome.

One summer, dad was asked to put on a fish fry for some businessmen from NY. It was for the ground breaking ceremony for a place called Palm Coast which is just north of Daytona. At the time it was nothing but a small building in the midst of sand dunes covered with palmettos. Dad told me that he once had a chance to buy some of that property for 25 dollars an acre when he was younger but he figured that it would never be worth anything so he passed on that opportunity. He even laughed about this venture as these men planned to develop this property. Boy was he wrong. These ¼ acre lots ended up selling for around 100 thousand once the development took off.

Anywhoo, the NY businessmen wanted a fish fry but they didn’t’ want mullet. They wanted Grouper because everyone in NY “knows” that’s the best fish around. The problem was that grouper was several dollars a pound and Dad wouldn’t make much money if he served that. So Dad called a friend of his down at the inlet and found out that he could get Amberjack for less than a dollar a pound. Amberjack is a large fish that was very abundant at that time. The tourists would go deep sea fishing and catch literally tons of them and then give them to the boat crew since they had no way of keeping them while on vacation.



So we got a bunch of Amberjack and cleaned and fillet them. Once they were fillet and skinned, you couldn’t tell the difference between them and grouper fillets. The fish fry went well and everyone there loved and raved about the “grouper”. Only my Father and I knew the truth. Disclaimer: I was a minor and the time and Dad has passed so I figured it was safe to tell this story. And that is why I am not surprised that so many people in NY aren’t getting the fish they think they are. I guess we started it way back then.

Have a great day,

Greg

Saturday, December 8, 2012

It just isn't funny.

I started to write about this a short while ago but I never finished it. However now seems like a good time to make this post. There is a local radio station here in Charleston that regularly makes prank phone calls. It is intended for entertainment purposes but to me, it just isn’t funny.
This is setting a bad example for our children, telling them not only is it ok to make prank phone calls but that it is ok to pick on someone as long as it’s in the name of entertainment. It really reminds me of all the times that I was picked on as a child and others would stand by laughing at my humiliation.   I was a bit chubby as a child and quite naive. I would do anything if asked and I trusted everyone.
As I became a teenager I began not trusting people and even grew to hate some mean people. I carried that hatred and non-trusting into my adulthood and it really changed my life. I was afraid to talk or perform in front of others so I shied away from singing, acting and even public speaking. Whenever I was asked to talk to a group of people, my mouth would get dry, my face would turn red and I would have an upset stomach thinking that someone in the audience might laugh at me. It’s a shame too because at one time I enjoyed acting, singing and public speaking. I didn’t get over this fear again until I was in my 40’s.
And here is another sad part about this locl radio station. The guy making the calls usually disguises his voice by talking with a lisp or with an ethnic dialect. If I fell into one of the groups mentioned, I would be highly offended. But the people that listen to this station don’t think there is anything wrong with it. I don’t actually listen to this station very often and don’t listen to the morning show at all. I only know about it because they play the “Best of” sometimes in the afternoon and I catch a few seconds of it before turning it off. In my opinion this is the “Worst of” as far as entertainment.
Now we have DJ’s make a fake phone call to a hospital and get the nurse so upset that she takes her own life. I wonder if they are still laughing. They should be fired in my opinion. I thought that making prank phone calls was against the law? Am I wrong? What is wrong with people?

Try to have a great day,
Greg
 

Friday, December 7, 2012

FYI, I am watching you back.

That's right stalkers, you may be watching me but I am watching you back. I have the ability to see who is visiting or at least where you are from. I can figure out who you are if you are a blog friend just by your location. So why not leave a comment or if you aren't a blogger, send me an email. I love hearing from you, why you visited and what you thought. If you are new to my blog, I took about a year vacation from blogging but I am back now and will try to post at least every couple of days. So please say hi here or at my email. You can reach me at gmcushing@bellsouth.net. I would love to hear from you. And come back later today, I have an interesting (and funny) story to tell.

Have a great day,
Greg

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Keeping it simple

I had a story ready to post today but then I realized that it is Thankful Thursday so I will put that one on hold. I am so thankful today for all the little changes in my life. The past 4 years have been a real struggle for us but I have learned one thing; we can survive on less and actually do pretty well. We have downsized a lot and gotten rid of a lot of clutter in our lives and I feel this is a good thing. As we go forward from here I know we can downsize even more and get to a comfortable place. I know a lot of people will be following this lead in the years to come and I pray that you are all successful in this venture even though for some it won't be a choice. Just keep your head up, keep pushing forward and thank God for everything that comes your way.

Have a great day,
Greg

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Stalkers beware

This internet thing is just a fad:

That’s what I thought when it first came out. I figured that it would be around for a short time and then fade away like Beanie Babies or Pop Rocks or The Beatles. I guess I was wrong. I can see a lot of positive things about the internet but there are so many negative things that I wonder if it is all worth it. And I do believe that the government could easily weed out a number of negative aspects if they really wanted to but they don’t.

For instance they could very easily get rid of a lot of the hackers and stalkers. If they did that then the anti hacking and anti stalking departments of our government wouldn’t have jobs. So that isn’t going to happen. I think their goal is to catch enough to make it look like they are doing something so that their jobs look important but not enough to put a dent in the hackers and stalkers. It is sort of like war. We all wish that there were no wars but the government needs a little conflict from time to time otherwise how could we justify the war department.

So about the stalking:

The thing that gripes me the most about the internet are those moving icons. You know the ones. They pop up on your screen and continually move around in an effort to make you accidently click on them. So you are trying to click on the local weather map and that “dating” icon jumps in the way and all of a sudden there is an icon on your weather page that says meet single girls in your area. And don’t even think about clicking on that icon just to see what it does.

 I had one of those pop-ups that came up on the local news site. It said click here for a 50% off coupon for shoes. Well I didn’t need any new shoes and really thought that stiletto heels for the bedroom were kind of impractical (I prefer fuzzy slippers) so I dodged that icon. But it got the best of me and jumped in front me like all those deer jumped in front of my cars. Yes right there in front of the local weather map icon just as I was about to click on it and bam! it took me to a Fredrick’s of Hollywood site that was advertising shoes for the bedroom. Well to make a long story short they didn’t have my style or size (ahem) but now she won’t leave me alone. Yes she is stalking me.

The next day I was shopping for hardware on Home Depot dot com and there in the corner pops up my little stalker from Fredrick’s. I am not sure what she was doing there so she had to be stalking me. Maybe she was just shopping for ropes or hunting boots or something like that. I just don’t know. And I have to say that the outfit that she was wearing wasn’t too practical. There wasn’t enough material to make a hand towel. But I just ignored her, did my shopping and left.

Now it seems that no matter what site I go to, she follows me around. And the scary part is that she knows how to follow me. She knows my office and home computer, all my email accounts and all the sites that I visit. And she isn’t alone. Apparently she has lots of friends and now the girls from Sears, another one from Kmart and one from Walmart are all stalking me.

And if all that isn’t bad enough, now there are single girls in my area that want to date me. And they won’t take no for an answer either. They just keep jumping around my computer screens hoping that I will say yes but so far I have managed to avoid their advances. But when is it all going to stop? I tried deleting my history, passwords, cookies, cakes and pies but to no avail. They keep coming back. Now I know I am considered to be a ladies man and all but come on, No means no. I am really not interested. I mean not only am I married, look at the age difference. She could be my granddaughter daughter. The sad part is I don't even know her name.


Have a nice day but quit stalking me.

Greg