Monday, October 27, 2014

Old and New

    Every weekend, our newspaper has a section on the first world war - stories, photographs. The section makes me think about previous wars. Before photography, there were paintings. Think about those from the Napoleonic Wars. Large, vivid in colors, seldom dark or morose. Wind blowing capes, horses, one foot in the air, the general, brave and daunting, in front of his troops.
    Quite a contrast from the first world war photos, with their singular color of black and white, no brave general leading his troops, but troops dragging through mud, falling over dead and dying friends. Horses pulling gun carriages, straining at the load, starving, never to see green fields again.
    The Napoleonic Wars had the same grief, the same mud with the generals at the back of their troops, and the soldiers dying in the mud.

Friday, October 24, 2014


     A couple of days ago, I wheeled my daughter into the van and drove her to Wal-Mart. It's so easy to do with the new van. I find that when I am driving, I am a touch more nervous than normal. Been driving for 55 years - not afraid of driving. At other times I drive the car and all is normal. But the van is a wheelchair type and cost over $60,000. I'm not worried about my driving, I'm worried about everyone's else's. Any type of accident would be disastrous. Even a slight touch on he back may not allow me access to the ramp, and then how would I get my daughter out. It would be a struggle getting her through the side door and I would never get the wheelchair out. So - extra careful.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

An Onion A Day

     Depending on airport flights, airport waits can be long, and if not prepared, tedious. I find that a book as a travelling companion is a must. With or without a book, people watching can be most interesting, productive or disheartening.
     I sit in New Jersey - my carry-all luggage wrapped around me - a chapter finished. The spies can wait while I eyeball my surroundings. Raising my head, my first blink, like a photo, captures a couple, each with a hamburger laid out on a napkin, which tries its best to stay in place on their laps. It appears each has ordered a patty with the same trimmings. As I watch, they began to trade condiments - she dislikes onions, he tomatoes, she dislikes pickles, and he lettuce - and so it goes. With trading completed - both satisfied, they press their sandwiches back together, happy for the trade. They appear to be a good match.
     A man walks by holding a submarine sandwich by three fingers. The other two fingers clasp onto a dangling plastic bag. It hangs down rigid, eight inches long, dragged down by the weight of an onion. Not just any onion, but a large one, yet unpeeled, its outer skin green and brown. Is it a souvenir - something to brag about to Midwest relatives, "Everything is large in New York, look at this onion." Then again, it could be dessert, one I would shy away from, and I suppose from anyone who consumes one raw. Wonder what flight he is on?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Italian Craftsmanship

While walking along a passageway on the Caribbean Conquest, at center I noticed a bump in the floor bearing a sign, "Watch Your Step." A year ago, on the Norwegian  Spirit, there was no such bump. I asked my son about this. "Oh," he said, " this ship was built in Italy. The ship last year was built in Germany." It seems they build Caribbean ships in a naval shipyard as two pieces, then welded together. Italian craftsmanship - maybe they should stick to purses and shoes.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Down South

Just back from three cruises down south. First, Carnival Conquest, second, Norwegian Sky, and third, a swamp boat in the everglades. No meals on the third one. I think we were the meal, catered.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Tha Best Man?

I read this from Tom Clancy. "Corrupted men only select other corrupter men to be their peers."
That reminds me of my air force career. Drunks promote drunks, cad players promote card players, and golfers promote golfers. It's the same in every business. I expect it's the same at the White House security. Then there's that Ebola farce in Texas.

On the Ball

On the ball this morning. Lathered up with shaving cream, then grabbed my hair brush.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

"Red Rabbit"

Reading Tom Clancy's "Red Rabbit."
Finding it slow going.

Title To Wonder About.

Working on my book. Still haven't made up my mind about a title. My three thoughts are
"The Man in the Panama Hat." "The Scavi Incident." and  "Neocropolis."