Monday, September 30, 2013

diet tribe

Hello sinners, bad spellers of the world, UNTIE! It's time for this spelling bee to buzz the hive and honey get a load of these biscuits, you know, get some from the chicken vendor at the K and share with your girlfriend while the bases are loaded, no balls and two strikes (0uch), but at least you don't need a license to line drive, just a sound mind, like a last will and testament, New Testament is preferred but "used" will be fine too, and by the way they get their bats from Looseyville, then we'll head down 65 for some pickin' and grinnin at the Opry, and while we're there, take a swig of some corn squeezin's from grandad's still, white lightnin', sour mash hot mouth rot-gut whiskey, for automotive use only 'cuz they used an old radiator, but our radiator's fine so we'll head across to the Smoky hills, on past Dolly Forge and the family style meals, pass the collard greens and so-so Elvis impressions and just get lost, you know, so we can find ourselves, but if it turns out you still can't find yourself just grab someone's GPS, just be sure to to ask first, and say please, because manners are a lost art, but I don't mind them, as a wise old dead sage once said, wherever we go, there we are, which reminds me, there used to be folks in GeoCities but now the broken links are becoming collector's items, oh how people laugh at me for collecting dust, but I can't help it, maybe I need help. Will you help me? PLEASE? And I'll even leave a post on your wall, "Just wanted to say thanks for a wonderful weekend without sex."

Friday, September 27, 2013

musing on childhood impressions once more...

To take grownup church to an Orwellian end you really just need a building with a sign reading REPENTANCE CENTER. Inside there's a rather stern looking gentleman at a desk and you WILL repent.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Friday, August 2, 2013

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

kindred signals

every once and again i get nostalgic, and usually it's a zeitgeist that sets in and won't let go. it's a good one. about 20 yrs ago, during college, i got my ham radio license. as an engineer and lifetime signal junkie the technical aspects are a natural draw, but i also thought it would provide a way to be social for once.

first rig was a military surplus deal that, well, was more of a toy than an means to an end. it could pick up nearby cordless phones, the highway patrol dispatch, state prison guard HQ and once a couple of kids running around with walkie talkies. only contact was with a historic aircraft, fittingly.

but the summer after getting my license i broke down and got a handie-talkie that covers the much more popular "two-meter" (VHF) band, and before long i had an antenna up and made my first contact.

it didn't take long to figure out who's who. most of the regulars are friendly, some a bit overbearing but all well-meaning. as in real life the best conversations are off the beaten path, such as the older dudes in the next county that let me join in, or the whiz kid up north who has the top class license already.

still, the introvert in me can spend hours just listening. radio has a magic like nothing else, and sooner or later other towns drift in, especially in the warmer months, and distant civilizations are as close as the desk. and even though all the regional hubs had busy repeaters, none seemed to glow in the night like detroit.

easily the biggest metro within "drift" range, the scene was always alive, something i got to confirm about 10 yrs later when i lived up that way. one machine in particular would bleed into one of my scan channels for a nearby repeater, and more often than not i'd listen. besides, with only five watts back then i had little choice.

some nights the 147.140 frequency sounded like a professional call in show. one an off-duty police officer was fielding questions and had to push back one about a particular case that wasn't appropriate for amateur radio. then later on this gal with a smooth, heavenly voice had an "insomniacs net", and i was intrigued when she mentioned she has grandkids.

eventually i upgraded my license and explored a lower frequency band that, like CB, skips about the hemisphere every 500 miles or so when it wants to. there was still a morse code test back then and so for the first year the mic stayed in a drawer. eventually i made a few contacts and still have the cards, but again, it can be fun to just listen, especially on those nights when the band stays awake longer than i do.

so now i have full privileges and a decent radio setup, have talked to several continents over the years...

so why the nostalgia? got to thinking how in the college years we strive for something bigger than what we have and we don't know what we don't know. and for a radio geek, well, studying sometimes has to wait.

it's blissful quixotism.

and it's often tempting to take life too seriously, i need some of that now more than ever.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

more things i needed to know 25 years ago

Pain is only temporary.

Learn what intuition means.

There's a reason why Led Zeppelin got you through the fall of your freshman year.

Everything takes practice.

Idealism is a young man's game.

Emotions matter.

There are as many things to cherish as there are things to take for granted.

There is always hope.

If you can stop and laugh at stupid shit you're doing OK.

Women enjoy sex a LOT more than they let on.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

things i needed to know 25 years ago

If you can't look into someone's eyes, or vice versa, find out why.

People usually mean well even when their words don't have the intended effect.

a man in every boy,
a woman in every girl,
a boy in every man,
a girl in every woman,
and everything in between,
just as sure
as love and hate
are two sides of a coin.

If you fear, you won't.

Some things you still won't understand 25 years from now.

A lady won't expect you to know everything but she'll teach you well if you get next to her. Often. And pay attention.

Basketball is cool.

Don't do stupid things.