Friday, October 13, 2017

FOUR ARRESTED IN EMPATHY TENT RUCKUS


“If you look at them, it’s ridiculous,” Sgt. Marquis told the Los Angeles Times. “You’ve got a guy with purple hair with a fucking lightsaber talking about Hitler to a guy dressed in a banana suit. Then someone takes a knee, allegedly just to tie their shoe and all hell breaks loose. It’s hard for me to take any of this seriously but I'm sworn to protect the peace and dignity of the community.”
Good luck, Sgt. Marquis

Thursday, October 12, 2017

JERRY TAKES A KNEE WITH ONE THING ON HIS MIND...MONEY



"Maybe none of this is about control. Maybe it really isn’t about who can own whom, who can do what to whom and get away with it, even as far as death. Maybe it isn’t about who can sit and who has to kneel or stand or lie down, legs spread open. Maybe it’s about who can do what to whom and be forgiven for it. Never tell me it amounts to the same thing."
Margaret Atwood, The Handmaids Tale

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

A LIST OF FAILS



I look back on my life and see failure after failure.
When I was three I failed at eating Brussels sprouts. When I was four I failed my ballet and tap dancing lessons. At the age of five I showed a lack of talent at not setting things on fire. Then came First Grade and things got real. Of the many things that I failed at my first two years of school, perhaps standing quietly in line and keeping my hands to myself was the most challenging. Its been a life long problem. In the third grade I single handedly turned the class mural into a vulgar piece of graffiti.
A year later I hit the wall at memorizing poetry.
When we moved back to Texas my baseball dreams died when I could not hit a 40 MPH David Hutts screwball. My football career ended on a high note when I finally made a tackle on my very last play and the coach asked me “Where the hell have you been all year, Renfro?”

In the ninth grade it was Algebra fail.
In the tenth grade it was Geometry fail.
In the eleventh grade I blew Chemistry, Typing, General Business, and History. But for Dan Washmon spotting me a point in Journalism I might never have graduated.
So I decided I would be a chef, and I failed at that too.

I sat there at the State Fair yesterday and watched a woman demonstrate how to make Gumbo. She talked about roux, and explained how long it took to make it. She had a long list of ingredients, about half of which I would not have thought to put in there. She had a little nylon bag full of spices she threw in, probably made by Zatarains, and cautioned against leaving in too long because it would eventually burst and there would be bits of sassafras bark, peppercorns, bay leaves and God know what else floating in the Gumbo, and it would take hours to pick it all out. Somehow I knew this is what would happen to me if I used one of those bags.

I wanted to stand up and display my years of knowledge by asking her if she had ever heard of using cheesecloth to make a bouquet garni (which classically is what her little store bought bag is called), but hey, she’s the one still in the business, doing the glamorous work of demonstrating proper culinary technique, explaining we get the word “Gumbo” from the Bantu word for “Okra” in front of hundreds of fascinated State Fair attendees. Would I earn any points to point out that a nice roux can be made in minutes? No, I would just end up looking like a washed up, bitter old chef that thinks he used to be hell on wheels.

The fact is I’m just a lowly shipping clerk in my twilight years. I remember little about Teapot Dome and the Dawes Act. I couldn’t math my way out of a wet paper bag. In ballet, my allegro is mostly adagio, I tend to confuse avant with arriere, and that’s just the “A’s”. I also discovered my jete’ grande’ ain’t as grand as I imagined. and not because someone had tied my chausson de danse together.
But at least I no longer wake up smelling like shrimp and onions.

Friday, October 06, 2017

TAKING A KNEE IN PROTEST



The best explanation I can think of to your question is that sports bring out the best that one can hope to aspire to. The amount of dedication and desire it takes to excel and win can hardly be measured. it requires a high level of personal competence and accountability. For the student fans in the stands, its a metaphor for what they should try to acheive in the classroom. I never went to college, but I would imagine after the game over the weekend, whether won or lost, inspiration is drawn from that and applied to their studies. Same with everyday folk. I went to a Rangers game a few weeks ago. I watched Gomez, on his first at bat as a Ranger, hit a 3 run homer. It made me proud to go to work the next day,a nd proud to live in a country that lends itself to such principles and aspirations.
So we say the pledge, and listen to the National Anthem at sporting events to remind ourselves that the principles of fair play of the event we are about to see also reflect what should be the principles of the country we live in.
In reality this is not always the case, and the history of sports reflects that as well, as in the cases of Jackie Robinson, Hank Aaron, Mohammed Ali, and countless others. For that reason, I don't see taking a knee during the pledge as being traitorous; I think it is patriotic. Its very brave to go against the social norms, and lend your voice, and your ass, to a group of people that wants to be heard.
Thats the best explanation I have for you.





I think it has a place. Sports bring out the best that one can hope to aspire to. The amount of dedication and desire it takes to excel and win can hardly be measured. it requires a high level of personal competence and accountability. For the student fans in the stands, its a metaphor for what they should try to acheive in the classroom. I never went to college, but I would imagine after the game over the weekend, whether won or lost, inspiration is drawn from that and applied to their studies. Same with everyday folk. I went to a Rangers game a few weeks ago. I watched Gomez, on his first at bat as a Ranger, hit a 3 run homer. It made me proud to go to work the next day,and proud to live in a country that lends itself to such principles and aspirations.


So we say the pledge in classrooms, and listen to the National Anthem at sporting events to remind ourselves that the principles of hard work and fair play of the event we are about to see also reflect what should be the principles of the country we live in.





In reality this is not always the case, and the history of sports reflects that as well, as in the cases of Jackie Robinson, Hank Aaron, Mohammed Ali, and countless others. For that reason, I don't see taking a knee during the Anthem as being traitorous; I think it is patriotic. Its very brave to go against the social norms, and lend your voice, and your ass, to a group of people that wants to be heard.

OCTOBER



October smells like smoke to me
Smells like dogs and leaves and bare trees
It looks like rain in blurry beads
on windows
Like slippery streets, corn in rows,
Tight woolen sweaters on busty girls
I can almost taste it
Blue cotton candy at the fair,
Wet fall kisses and juicy over ripened pears.

bulletholes 10/2017

Sunday, September 24, 2017

WHO WON THE VIETNAM WAR?


"In 1967 at the Pentagon they had a big mainframe computer in the basement. It was the size of a football field. They fed in all sorts of numbers; number of men, guns, tanks, planes, helicopters; ammunition stores, rations, portable bridges, APV’s; everything an army needs to wage a war. They let it run all weekend and came in Monday morning to see who the computer said would win the war.
They pulled the card out of the hopper. It said:
“You won in 1965”
~from Part 5 of the Ken Burns series "Vietnam"

Monday, September 18, 2017

ANOTHER FACET OF VIETNAM....HEROIN AND ADDICTION



When I was a kid, from the age of 7-18 there was always the background noise of Vietnam. Sometimes it just about drowned everything else out. The 52,000 Americans dead, images of SE Asian jungles, the protests going on in the streets of America.
A standing President that didnt want the job anymore, and said so on nationwide TV.
Four dead in Ohio.
Pictured above~ Frank Plada,16, shirtless and flipping the bird, protesting Police Brutalty in Chicago, Frank joined the army and returned from Vietnam with a heoin habit.
Tune in tonight for Ken Burns new 10 part documentary The Vietnam War on PBS.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

WHY DO YOU THINK THEY CALL IT DOPE?

Once upon a time I played the role of Office Manager at restaurant.
Left to make the deposit one day and decided to stop by my house and get my pot.

While there I twisted one up. Took a few hits. Why not?
Stuck the pot in the deposit bag, went out to my car and headed for the bank.
Got to the bank, handed the teller the bag, started studying the texture of the marble countertop.
How marvelous!
I was mesmerized by seashells, bubbles and Angels on horseback, all in the marble!
Then the teller brings me back to reality.
“Um, sir” he says “did you want to deposit this?” and he’s holding up the baggie of pot.
Aw man.
“No, please don’t “ I said, and he smiles and slides it across the marble top.
Lesson learned… always go straight to the bank when you are going to make a deposit. Don't stop anywhere.

This is a really nice looking piece of marble, especially when you are stoned.

Monday, September 11, 2017

THE RIB

I woke up last night. My sweetie was laying there crying. 

“Whats wrong?” I asked. 
“I think I broke a rib” 
“How did you do that?” I asked.
I expected her to say "on the way to the bathroom", or "I fell out of bed". 
But no. 
“While we were making love” she said. 
I laughed. I couldnt help it.
I didnt know whether to say I’m sorry, or you're welcome.

Saturday, September 09, 2017

BUGGER ME

A few nights ago part of my anti-virus clean up program wasn’t working right. I pay 50 bucks a year for this program. So I called the company, told them the problem. They verified my account and wanted to LAN in to my computer. I let them. The dude obviously knew what he was doing. Scrolled thru file after file. Asked a few questions like “Do you do banking on the computer? Do you make online purchases?” Well, yes and yes.

So then he downloaded a malware detection program. It says I have 93 potential threats on my computer! 93! He tells me I have BIG problems, but he can fix them. I asked him why my clean up program I paid 50 dollars for wasn’t working, which is why I called in the first place. “They are updating that program this week” he says. "That’s why its not working. But you have other problems and your computer is at risk"

Then he brings up the screen that shows me what he can do to make my computer safe again. One is $100. That fixes me. One is 150. That fixes me and gets me another service call if I need one. Then the $200 package. Its has all the bells and whistles. He again explains to me how at risk I am. So I say “let me think about it and I’ll get back to you”. He puts me on hold. Now on the line comes a fast talking supervisor. She puts on the hard sell. I cant get a word in edgewise until I finally say :


“WHOA WHOA WHOA let me slow you down. I’ve had this computer for five years. Used your basic service, which has been outstanding. Now you tell me I am at severe risk all of a sudden. I’ve had no one hack my bank, no one has charged a thin dime to a credit card, there have been no strange unauthorized purchases at all, not one. And suddenly I need this?”

‘You are at risk Mr Renfro”

“We are all at risk baby. But lets go back to the beginning. I called to ask why your program I paid 50 bucks for isn’t working. You tell me its being updated and will start working again in 3 days. But that suddenly I’m in imminent danger unless I shell out another hundred bucks. If I hadn’t called you about your program we would'nt even be having this conversation.”
And you know what she did? She HUNG UP on me! The dude was still LAN’d in and everything! 

So, I shut it down , rebooted, downloaded the same malware they did, ran a check, determined none of the 93 “Threats” were malicious, cleaned the quarantine and rebooted again.
My question is….who am I most at risk from at this point….some outside hacker or the fucking dude at AVAST that LAN’d in two nights ago?
I’m thinking I should remove anything they have on my machine and find a new provider.

Saturday, September 02, 2017

NEW MAINTENANCE REQUEST

On 8/21 maintenance responded to my complaint of ants in the kitchen presumably by leaving a little white box for me to fold up and place on the floor that would get rid of the ants. I dont know if they also sprayed or not. All I got was the box.
A week later I hadn't seen any ants, but there weren't any in the box either.
Then last night I left a few fried pies from Turner Falls on the counter and had a million ants swarm out! I took the box and put it up there with the ants and they crawled all over the box, but none ever went in it. Not a one. So I squished as many as I could.
I hope you will send someone over to do something more than leave an ant motel on the counter for me to install, and they will let me know what they did. I’m really missin’ those fried pies.
I made my kids watch this old movie about the giant ants. When the ants came out they groaned and said “Aw Daddy,its so FAKE!”