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Winston

  1. ICYMI WE 01/05/19

    Pretty slow news week. That's usually a good thing for most people, but not all.

    This dumb arse government shutdown is about to start really impacting people. Already, the National Parks are trashed because there are no workers to remove the refuse. People are too stupid to realize this, and they don't clean-up after themselves. I can hear Teddy Roosevelt and John Muir screaming from their graves. Also, it looks like folks' tax refunds will be late, since obviously the IRS is ...

    Updated January 7th, 2019 at 02:12 AM by Winston

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  2. Push / Pull

    That cliché, "You make your own luck". That speaks to me.
    I can't say how much of my resilience is innate, and how much was learned. Regardless, I am thankful, but also feeling burdened.

    The majority of people I see are uncomfortable with the concept of "pushing through". When my knees were better, I used to run. A "good" run usually consists of stages: Stretching, warm-up, acceleration, pacing, adjusting and finishing. It's those last ...
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  3. Steve of Destruction

    I was raised in Macho culture. Rock and punk music, fast cars, punishing my body with all kinds of chemicals. I joined the Marines when I was seventeen. We would literally shout "Kill!" before each class in boot camp. My early relationships were misogynistic, not abusive but not respectful. Later, I worked in law enforcement where there were those with power, and those without. Good was accomplished through the proper use of force.
    There's a lot of dysfunction to unpack ...
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  4. Buy a Helmet

    "Life sucks, buy a f-ing helmet!" Denis Leary

    Another helpful PSA from your buddy, Winston.
    Seriously, now more than ever, be ready for stuff to just 'go bad'. I've written extensively here in my Ponder the Unthinkable series regarding Survival and SHTF procedures. 2012 / Mayan apocalypse came and went, people moved on. But don't get complacent. Enjoy the good times, but be ready for the bad times. The next downturn / setback may be closer than you think. ...
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  5. The Great War, 100 Years Later

    Veteran's Day is coming up, a day that used to be called Armistice Day.

    100 years ago, one the bloodiest conflict in human history ended with The Treaty of Versailles. The Armistice was signed between The Allies and (what remained) of the Central Powers. It was a "victory" for the allies, but at such a cost. The term Pyrrhic is hardly adequate.

    Much of the primary source material from that time is hard to digest. Grainy black-and-white video and biased ...
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  6. Where I Am

    This guy at the shipyard was wearing the same shirt as me the other day. We both had a distressed US Marine logo t-shirt. He didn't notice me, but I noticed him.
    I'm a bad person. I'm judging by appearances. But the guy wearing my shirt was a long, long way from his fighting-fit Marine days. His spare tire came off of a semi truck. Genetics were not his friend, either, as his bald head glowingly broadcast.
    Schadenfreude? Yep. I'm (kinda) ashamed to admit at that moment I was ...
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  7. Everyone Hates Chris

    It's not his fault. None of it.
    A lot of folks want to blame Christopher Columbus for every evil action and deed in the Americas since 1492. For you folks, grow up.

    First off, bad stuff happens. It just does. It happened in Europe, and it happened in the Americas before and after Chris and his gang landed.
    Were things better or worse after all the Europeans started expanding and exploiting? That's a mixed bag. But Columbus simply opened the door.

    And if ...

    Updated October 8th, 2018 at 08:48 PM by Winston

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  8. The Righteousness of the Raging Moderate

    We all believe in something. Maybe a few somethings. You know you do. We all do.

    So, why are there so many folks that proudly profess their "open-mindedness"?
    Well, because the opposite of that is closed-mindedness. That's sounds ignorant, arrogant and exclusionary. And that is not you.

    But if you truly believe in something, why maintain this front of "keeping an open mind"?

    Sorry. I come from a different world view. ...
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  9. White Boy Winston

    Or, AKA "Pink Like Me".
    But, I'm not white. Or pink. Or anything. I'm a friggin' person. One that resents labels.

    This month is another one of those "National Hispanic Heritage" month deals. My wife used to be Catholic. They have this silly calendar with all the "holy days' and "ordinary time". Well, with Identity Politics, they're all Holy Days now. Father, Son, and The Holy Pigment.

    I do look white. But my grandmother ...
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  10. The Fish Doesn't Know It's Wet

    I recently tested out my new pellet rifle, mainly to check the accuracy of different weight pellets. I set up a chronograph to measure speed, and a decibel meter as well.
    The rifle is Turkish, assembled in Arkansas, with a Chinese scope shooting Czech pellets.
    I know this is geeky stuff. Don't judge me.
    Seriously, there's a formula to determine the"knock-down" power of a pellet based on it's speed and weight. If I ever decide to dispatch a rodent, I want to make ...
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  11. Within Your Means, According to Your Abilities

    So, this man in Colorado kills his pregnant wife and two young kids. No one is shocked, at least like we used to be.
    To say we've become desensitized to violence is an understatement. But still, we look for answers. It's important for the heinous act to make sense, in some way. Maybe he was having an affair? Perhaps he was a right-wing-nut job that watched too many Dinesh D'Souza movies? Maybe his "assault rifle" jumped in his hands and pulled it's own trigger? Nope. None ...
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  12. History, Histronics and Hot Air

    I read a fascinating article about the fall of the Mayan Empire. Prior to the Contact Period, their civilization had been at it's apex in all respects. Anthropologists were at a loss why it was so weakened prior to first contact with the Europeans. Well, the geologists stepped-in and helped us answer that question. It turned out that there was a great drought sometime around the 9th Century AD. The Empire never recovered.

    The cause of the drought is unknown. But it's effects were ...
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  13. In The City

    (apologies to Joe Walsh for that title)

    I worked in Seattle for almost 10 years. Never hung out there much, usually just work then straight home. But there is a lot to do there.
    Every few years my little family spends a couple of days in the city, usually with a baseball game as the focal event. We rent a room, dine and wander around like the rubes that we are.

    My San Francisco Giants split two games with the Seattle Mariners. We were decked-out in our Giants ...
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  14. Beggars Banquret

    I don't make a ton of money at my job, but I stick around 'cause it's generally low stress. I can get time off easily. so I took a few days off this week.
    Before I left Friday, a co-worker left early. I was the only one left, so I yelled after him, "Are you leaving?'. He ignored me. I repeated. Finally, he stormed back around and screamed at me, "You're not my boss!" He vomited-out some more nonsensical grievances. I finally got sick of his butt-hurt nonsense, and ...
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  15. Drifting

    How many swimmers out there? Now how many of you are rocks?

    From my experience, the main difference between the buoyant and not-so-buoyant is simple. Economy.
    You don't have to be strong or talented to be a good swimmer, you just have to learn to not panic. Once you realize that you can float, the strokes and kicks come easy.
    But you can't force it. Folks that thrash and flail burn a ton of energy, lose their breath, then dip below the surface. Learn rhythm. ...
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  16. Theives

    Welcome the 21st Century. Here's how a watch gets stolen, and recovered. And the collateral damage.

    My son's school never has enough money for... anything. This includes something as simple as functioning lockers. At gym class, my son left his wallet, phone and watch in one of those "press your luck" lockers. Minutes after depositing his items, someone told my boy his locker as ajar. Sure enough, the lock mechanism had been pried. He discovered that his smart watch ...
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  17. The Incredible Shrinking Man

    No, not around the waist. We'll call that a stalemate. At least I'm not losing that battle.

    I just feel smaller. Which is funny, cause it' my world that s shrinking.

    We just put our dog down. He had chronic orthopedic issues. It's hard seeing the life still in your friend's eyes, and having to make that call. It's logical to rationalize and justify euthanasia. Still, I set my gym clothes by the stairs, and he's not there. I go to scrape my leftovers in ...
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  18. Skipper Dan Was Wrong

    For those not familiar with the refined, classy works of Weird Al Yankovic, please view this before continuing:



    I've heard this song dozens of times. I suppose I've enjoyed a bit of Schadenfreude in the listening, but something about it always disturbed me.
    Today, it came to me. Skipper Dan isn't a victim to be pitied. He's a pussy.

    Here's the deal: You give up, you lose. If Skipper Dan has really given up, I feel ...
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  19. JWs

    For most of us it's just kind of a gag: "Oh, the Jehovah's Witnesses are approaching the door! Hide!"
    Lately, I've seen them set-up in static locations. In my case, I see them at the ferry terminal with a slick-ish graphic board and their ubiquitous propaganda fliers. I think they still push the Awake! and Watchtower mags, in addition to the two page pamphlets. The JWs look so happy. They probably are. But my experience with them was something other than pleasant.
    ...
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  20. Hyperosmia

    You ever wish you had a super-power? If you did, I bet you wish it wasn't a super sense of smell.

    Well, I've been thusly cursed. At a ball game, I can smell the nachos three rows down. When I cleaned carpets, it sure came in handy. I had a painful, lingering sinus inflammation last year. So bad, my jaw even hurt. Don't know if it was related.

    But yeah, In the Marines, I could smell the other patrol coming 'cause some of their guys used too much cologne and bug ...
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  21. Work Ethic

    I met this guy at the bus stop. He looked healthy, but nearing retirement (like many who work at the shipyard). After talking a few talks. I discovered he was taking care od his sick wife (MS) and he was 67 years old. There was no bitterness in his tone or demeanor. He was thankful to be able to take care of her, and looking forward to spending more time with her. Listening to him, I was humbled. Then I got angry.

    I began to think about all the younger folk out there, bitching ...
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  22. Packin'

    I finally applied for a concealed carry permit.
    I wasn't driven by any specific current events. It was just something that I felt I should do.
    I think of these shootings where literally dozens of people are shot, waiting for "someone" to help. Well, I'm someone. I know that the police will get there... eventually. In the meantime, cowering and playing dead just isn't an option for me. I would just throw a chair or a rock, but there are better options out there. Like ...
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  23. Through and Thoreau

    More and more often, it's just too much. The "it" being everything, life in general. There is no flavor or color. Just survival. The only joy is the absence of pain. And "too much" is a relative term. Sure, I can put up with more, and more... and more. I just really don't feel like it anymore.

    This week was bad. Not the worst on record. Just more.

    I want less.

    I often imagine what it was like to live like Henry David Thoreau. ...
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  24. Not Lucky

    Alvin came down from his upstairs cubicle to visit yesterday. He used to be a working-class schlub like us, but now he's moved up to a better paying desk job.
    While visiting, he noted how clean and organized our work area was. He huffed and shook his head:
    "When I was down here, it was never this slow. You got it easy. You're lucky."
    The fact was, we'd been busting our arses and worked hard to get our work area clean. What Alvin saw was something magical to him. ...
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  25. Straight Edge

    I like my music, and love my history. At some point recently my mind wandered back to the glory days of Punk Rock. Y'know, before Green Day usurped and ruined it. Everyone remembers Punk for it's excesses. Spike Mohawks, piercings, slam dancing. All good stuff. But there was more than the fashion.

    Punk was also a social movement. Modern Hardcore was born out of the economic downturn in Brittan, and rode that wave of malaise to the States in the late 70's. People remember Punk ...
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