Today's News

From The EastWing, Thinking About The Dinners, Macy & NASCAR, Cleaning The EastWing, Sophia In High Places, Spike & The Beagles & The Switchblade Knives

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

For all my EastWing friends concerned about Barbaree and her encounter with the steel trap, thank you for your kind thoughts  and well wishes. She is recovering from her injuries and thanks one and all for your concern for her well being. What’s so amazing to me is how many of my EastWing friends felt compelled to express their concerns for the safety of a little girl dog named Barbaree.

Words spoken from the EastWing tend not to generate very much of a rapid response from anybody within a week or so. It’s not at all unusual to see something in my Email in response to something I’ve said two or even four weeks earlier. The reason is rather simple. Words spoken from the EastWing are low priority in the overall scheme of things in this mania we call life. Most times not worthy  of your time to comment one way or the other. Many times the words from the EastWing rank just a hair above sheer ennui. See there, just to get your attention, I laid the big “ennui” word on ya. Look it up.

The true story of the tribulation and liberation of Barbaree was different. It was close to midnight last Sunday Evening, when I looked at the Email and found, in less than 6 hours, a very large volume of Email asking about the health and well being of the little Beagle girl named  Barbaree. I knew it would be a fun week of reading the mail, and so it was.

The night of Wednesday last, about 8:00 O’clock was when the opossum walked onto the north deck with the intent of consuming all, and I do mean all the cat food on the north deck. It was Sharolette Beagle who first saw the thing, and Mr. Bentley walked over to check it all out. Mr. Bentley whined. I stepped to the north glass door of the EastWing and observed a very large opossum in the process  sucking up cat food like he’s sucking up gold from the floor of the Bering Sea.  All the deck cats stood well in the background.

With his nose just inches from the ole ‘possum while he’s still inside the glass, I opened the door and simply said “Do it”. Mr. Bentley, the Pit Bull in charge of Homeland Security, stepped onto the north deck, and did in fact provide such security. The time was 2 seconds, the final score was: Mr. Bentley 1, opossum 0.  Which just goes to show ya that if you’re an opossum, don’t go trying to eat cat food on a north deck controlled by Homeland Security provided by Pit Bull, Inc.  And so the record continues. Pit Bull Inc. established a killing field surrounding the EastWing. No intruder has crossed that line in both directions.  Mr. Bentley, and Pit Bull Inc.  Shewwww.

It was in  2004 when the family of Howard made a decision to serve a free Thanksgiving Dinner on Thanksgiving Day as long as we operated Grand Central Station in North Judson. We did so from 2005 thru 2012. And so it was that 2013 did not see the free Thanksgiving Dinner at Grand Central Station.  The building is now leased to others, and as such we no longer were able to continue the Thanksgiving Dinner.

As the Thanksgiving Holiday approached, it was both sadness and satisfaction that filled my soul. Sadness that I could not do it once again. Satisfaction that I’d done all I said I’d do. As long as I operated the business at Grand Central Station.  We stopped operating a business at Grand Central on September 1, 2013.

It was a personal thing to me. To do that Thanksgiving Dinner. I’ll not talk about the details of why it was personal here. I told the story one time a few years back, and to this day it’s hard to think about why it’s a personal thing to me. I’ll just say, when you’re a little hillbilly boy, and you’re made to feel like “white trash” and you’re still hungry.  Well, I’m not going any closer to that story again other to say that when I was 11 years old, I said to myself, one day I’ll provide a free Thanksgiving Dinner on Thanksgiving Day, and they’ll all come. And so we did, my family and I, 8 years in a row, with the help of so many wonderful people. The satisfaction part was, to myself, I kept my word.

And so it was that for the first time since 2004 I watched the Macy Parade. I love those big balloons. All the other stuff in that parade, forgetaboutit.  It’s the big balloons and Santa Clause at the end that makes the Macy Parade. All that singing stuff in front of the Macy Store, well that’s TV crap.

The Macy Parade is kinda like watching NASCAR or the Indianapolis 500 for many. Those folks tune into those events to watch the wrecks. And so the Macy Parade is also watched by ‘em to see if any of the big balloons get out of control. After all, when ya got a few million cubic feet of helium on strings and if the wind is blowing,,,,,, well ya just never know. Granted it’s not 220 mph and forever turning left, but cut me a little slack here, it’s Thanksgiving Morning, and even the red necks don’t race before noon.

An interesting thing happened here in the EastWing a couple weeks ago. It was time for the annual deep cleaning of the EastWing. I do mean deep here. We’re talking scrubbing the west wall. That’s the only wall at the EastWing that’s a real wall. The other three are mostly glass, with enough wall to support the roof. It’s the chicken wall of pictures, that west wall. It’s really down deep type cleaning in the EastWing when we do the west wall.

Anyways, I’m about ½ way across the west wall, going north to south, and I’m too pooped to continue for the day. I leave the ladder set in place for the next day.  Now the EastWing has what is called a vaulted ceiling and so the center of the west wall is well over 12 ft from the floor. With me having an issue with height, I don’t do ladders well. I was glad to stop for the day.

I’d not much more than climbed off the ladder for the day and sat down at the computer  when up walks Sophia. She proceeds to climb the ladder and sit on the very top. Looking down at me from atop the ladder she said, “nana, nana, nana, you are afraid of height and I’m not”. Sophia when she smiles. Damn Republican Cat.

Speaking of Sophia, this little Republican Cat is sucha twit. She hates all the other cats at the EastWing. Of course everyone knows about Spike The Man Cat.  Spike and Sophia share the in-house cat duties. Sophia hates Spike. To tell ya the truth, she don’t really care that much for me either.

Now Spike the Man Cat is close to, if not over, 20 lbs. Sophia is hard pressed to push 6 lbs soaking wet. And Sophia doesn’t do water, so we don’t really know what she weighs soaking wet.  Spike came to the EastWing as a little kitten that fit in the palm of my right hand. I’d had two other kittens in the house prior to Spike. Sophia beat ‘em up so bad I put ‘em back outside to live with my outside pride of cats. With Spike it was different, he didn’t come from the outside pride, so he couldn’t go back to the outside pride.  When Spike, the boy kitten, came to the EastWing, he was a pride of one.

When Spike was placed down to the EastWing floor, Sophia proceeded to slap him around. But unlike the other kittens before him, Spike didn’t run off and hide. Spike the boy kitten, hunkered down and took the lumps. The She didn’t like  that I would let Sophia be mean to the little boy kitten. Yet from the very beginning I knew, I just knew, and so  told the She, “The tide will turn”. And so it did turn. Spike The Man Cat is now the largest cat, by far, at the EastWing. Sophia still hates him.  Spike makes Sophia’s life miserable from time to time, just for fun. It’s fun to watch Spike The Man Cat strut around and occasionally tell Sophia “bring it on”.

It’s also a pleasure to watch Spike and the Beagles. The Beagles are longer, by a just a little bit, but Spike is as tall and they all weigh pretty much the same. Spike lays on this back and takes on both beagles at the same time. A fun show with the beagles pulling Spike across the floor by his tail. Watching the beagles chewing on his legs without Spike putting up any resistance, all the while knowing full well that Spike has the ability to draw blood faster than the beagles can think. Switchblade knives of the cats are play toys as well as both defensive and offensive weapons.

The beagles have never seen the offensive switchblade knives of the Man Cat.  Yet they do exist. The ability of a cat to defend themselves when needed is something to behold. A cat can go from friendship to mortal combat within such a small time slice most other animals are still thinking they’re friends, after they’ve been declared enemies.

This friendship to combat occurred one Sunday Afternoon when I made the mistake of taking  Mr. Bentley into my office and brought him into contact with the Black & Whites of the office, Miss Kitty and Little Brother.  Mr. Bentley made the mistake of drinking their water. The Black & Whites of the office drew 16 drops of blood from Mr. Bentley before I could get him out of their striking range.

I remember when I was a kid someone said that professional boxers had to register their hands as deadly weapons. Now I’m not saying that’s true, but I’m telling ya, that’s just some of the stuff ya learned growing up in Downtown Toto, back in the day.  If that’s the case, every cat in the world would have to register their knives ‘cause the cats switchblade knives are as deadly as it gets.

If the beagles could only know how close they play to disaster. Switchblade claws for both fun and war, makes a happy Man Cat walk with swagger.

I always try to remember, words that soak into my ears are whispered… not yelled.”

Stay safe in Afghanistan.

From The EastWing, Thinking About The Dinners, Macy & NASCAR, Cleaning The EastWing, Sophia In High Places,  Spike & The Beagles & The Switchblade Knives

I wish you well,




Bill Davis

Bill Davis & Winston!

Jennifer Davis writes about diabetes.






I am a diabetic. Ten years ago, I was first diagnosed with pre-diabetes, type 2. My dad is diabetic and was diagnosed with pre-diabetes in his fifties, also. Thanks, Dad!



The facts are that the risk factors for a diagnosis of Type 2 Diabetes do include family history, but there are other factors as well. And….not everyone who has a family history of Type 2 Diabetes gets Type 2 Diabetes.



In my case, there were several other risk factors that sealed my fate:





Sedentary lifestyle


Poor food choices especially with fast food


Delivering a baby who weighed more than nine pounds (thanks, Ben)


High Blood Pressure





Yes, all of those and my dad. The good thing about Diabetes Type 2 is that it’s never too late to do something about it to control the progress of the disease. Statistics show that one in every three Americans will be diagnosed with diabetes in the future. I and everyone else need to take charge of our health to prevent the havoc that diabetes can cause.



This is what I am doing to try to make up for my years of bad habits:



  1. Exercise 30 minutes (every day)

  2. Count my intake of carbohydrates (35 grams/meal 15 grams/snack)

  3. Limit my fast food intake

  4. Know which foods have a high glycemic index and low glycemic index load (especially my fruits and vegetables). Avoid the high GL but indulge in the low GI.

  5. Be committed to your medical program, whether that be insulin, oral medications as well as testing your blood sugar frequently. Monitor your successes and celebrate.



My dad didn’t do a very good job at controlling his diabetes. He has paid the price as he has aged with neuropathy issues, wound healing issues, reduced vision, and a myriad of other diabetic related health problems. He may have passed along his genetic cooties to me but he has also taught me the importance of taking care and control of the disease at an early stage.


Thank you Jennifer for your article. Picture of her dad, Bill Davis, Sr., and her dog Winston.


There’s No Such Word As Can’t


Harry Lempke

Harry Lempke

Harry “Butch” Lempke learned a lesson that has followed him throughout a lifetime.  As ‘’Butch” says, “There’s no such word as can’t.”  He heard that from his high school football coach Les Klein, and never forgot it.  By eliminating that word from his vocabulary “Butch” has been able to live a complete life in spite of having diabetes.

When he worked at the Ford Stamping Plant his weight ballooned to over 400 pounds.  “That was the beginning of my type 2 diabetes,” he said.  “I was always thirsty, and when I went to Dr.  Dennis Dalphon my blood sugar count was over 400.”   He learned that when a person  has incredible thirst it could be a symptom for diabetes.  Excessive thirst is how the body lets people know that the kidneys are working at a high gear level.  Because of the diagnosis he was put on medicine to control his diabetic condition.  “I was physically a mess,” he admitted.  “I was overweight, had high blood pressure, and sleep apnea, and experienced a silent heart attack.

  At that point “Butch” decided to follow the words of Coach Klein and get with it.  “I can get this disease under control, and live a better life,” he thought. “There is no such word as can’t.” Since then he has gone on a strict diet, and rides his bike up to 7 miles a day on the North Judson trails.  “I’m not at my football playing weight of 230, but I’m getting there,” he revealed.  “I have lost over 135 pounds, and quite frankly I’m a happy guy.  I volunteer at St. Peter’s Lutheran school, and I’m still on the fire department.  Life is good.”

So what advise would he give those who suspicion they have diabetes?  “See your doctor, follow your medication regimen faithfully, eat less, and exercise,” he said, “And of course remove the word can’t from your vocabulary.”  

From The EastWing,The Tribulation, A Beagle Lost, Trapped In Steel, A Rescue Angel Named Bentley, Bare Footed & Going Home

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

It was a few minutes past 6:30 in the AM on the Monday Morning of the 25th day of November when the beagles, Sharolette and Barbaree, leaped for joy as they ran down the EastWing stairs to the grass. The routine has, by now, pretty much been established. The beagle girls go out at 6:30 AM and I don’t see ‘em again until I come home from the office in early to mid afternoon. Yeah, I’m kinda lazy, no longer work full 8 hour days, just kinda come and go as I choose.

Arriving home that afternoon, I was greeted by Sharolette only.  That’s not too unusual, as Barbaree is the real hunter of the two beagles. As darkness came on, I continued to look for Barbaree at any minute to come to the glass doors of the EastWing. Evening came, and morning followed. Sharolette slept alone. On the morning of the 26th Sharolette did not want to go outside when the time came to go outside. With encouragement, she done her duty and, wonder upon wonder, she came back to the EastWing glass and insisted on coming back inside the house. With Sharolette insisting  on staying inside, I put her in the crate and went to work.

Much of last night and all of the morning on the way to the office that day, my thoughts were on Barbaree. What happened to that little beagle? Why would she run away? I finally concluded that there was no way the little girl dog would leave the EastWing, life was too good to just up and run off. The only home she’d ever known, the sister she’d been with from birth, the cats she loved to play with, (not Sophia, Spike The Man Cat), and her very special friend, Mr. Bentley.  No, there was just no way that Barbaree would leave the EastWing by her own choosing. For that, I was sure.  There had to be another reason for her disappearance. The day at the office was spent in worry about a little beagle girl dog named Barbaree.

On the way home that afternoon, I pulled the car in the garage after hearing the weather forecast of an impending massive lake effect snow for Starke County. Walking from the garage to the house I heard a beagle howling. Thinking it was Sharolette whom I’d left in the crate that morning, I’m thinking she’s really howling loud for me to hear her all the way outside. As I walked inside the house, Sharolette was not howling from the crate.

As usual, Mr. Bentley was overjoyed to see me and showed such by trying his best to push me over with his excitement.  Mr. Bentley and I go to the EastWing and rescue Sharolette from the crate. I opened the glass door to the east and the two dogs leaped to the dirt, ran like the wind to the north edge of the lawn. There Mr. Bentley stopped cold, turned and looked me directly in the eye. He had never done that in all his days at the EastWing. Forever, Mr. Bentley has always ran to the east. That day he ran north. Something inside me simply said follow, and so I did.

As soon as Mr. Bentley realized I was coming toward him, he ran into the freshly picked corn field north of the EastWing. Mr. Bentley ran maybe 100 feet then stopped, and once again looked me directly in the eye. When he realized I was still following, he once again ran into north Wind as fast as he could go. As I walked northward, I realized that I was being lead by Mr. Bentley. Of that, there was no doubt, he would run, stop, look back, and run again.

A chill came over me as I realized I’d come outside without a coat in 28° weather following a dog, having no idea where I was going or any knowledge as to why I was even there. But I was there, and with labored breathing almost to the point of inability to continue, I continued to follow Mr. Bentley.

All the while I’m following Mr. Bentley, I’m walking the east property line which is identified by a very deep ditch. Almost a ½ mile north of home, Mr. Bentley stops and looks back once again. He sees me still trying to catch up. He changes directions. Bentley goes down the ditch bank and pops up on the other side.

Now I’m 150 feet away but I can clearly see Mr. Bentley on the other side of the ditch. As I continue toward his location, he goes from the far side of the ditch to my side of the ditch.  When Mr. Bentley comes up on my side to the ditch, we once again makes eye contact.  Just as soon as that happens, Bentley goes down the ditch bank and pops up on the other side.

When I reach the spot where Mr. Bentley went down the ditch bank, I walk over to the ditch bank and looked down.

Barbaree is setting in the bottom of a deep dry ditch bed, her right foot stuck fast in a large steel trap. Mr. Bentley is standing at her side. I shivered when I realized what I had to deal with. I fell on my butt going down the ditch bank, and I knew that going back up was going to be a problem.

Thought I could push it open, that steel trap, by hand. I could not. Don’t know if they’re building steel traps  stronger or I’m getting weaker, either way, I had to place it on the dirt and step on the damn thing to get my beagle’s foot free.  Of course Barbaree did help to the extent she could. Just as soon as I’d relieved the least amount of pressure, I’m sure she pulled like crazy to get out of that trap. In the blink of an eye, Barbaree was free at last. Thank God, free at last.

Damn near froze to death and unable to walk, I picked Barbaree up and started up the ditch bank. It became apparent real soon that I could not climb the ditch bank holding Barbaree in my arms and wearing Crocks in place of real shoes. What to do, oh Lord, what to do. As the ole boy in the move “Oh Brother Where Art Thou” said “damn we’re in a tight spot”.

My beagle couldn’t climb the ditch bank, I wouldn’t leave my beagle, and I couldn’t climb carrying my beagle and  wearing Crocks. I thought maybe I could climb the ditch bank bare footed. The decision was made, I pulled off the Crocks, threw the Crocks up on the land.  Picked up my injured Barbaree, then bare footed in 28° weather, clawed my way up the ditch bank to the flat corn field above.

  By the time I got there we had to stop and rest, me and Barbaree.  After winning the battle of the ditch bank, just breathing was now my major issue to deal with, but Barbaree was in my arms, so life was good and all was well.

Almost a ½ mile from home and carrying a beagle may not sound like a challenge to many. One of my medical conditions is called Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary  Disease. Now that’s just fancy doctor talk meaning ya can’t breathe worth a damn.

Having that problem severely limits one’s ability to walk any measurable distance. Yet I carried the beagle, and we started home. Four rest stops along the way made all the difference in the world. Now Mr. Bentley didn’t quite understand why I was stopping so much  and I didn’t have the breath to explain the reason why, so he just sat and waited for me to carry on. It seemed Mr. Bentley wanted to get Barbaree home as much as I did. One thing for sure, Mr. Bentley was not going to leave little Barbarees side.

We got home, Barbaree and me and Mr. Bentley all the while being accompanied by Sister Sharolette, barking every other step. Barbaree was first taken to the water dish before she left my arms. She drank away two days of thirsty. When her thirst was quenched, I carried Barbaree to the food where she ate away two day of hungry. Now hydrated and with a full belly, I carried Barbaree to her EastWing Couch. Barbaree was home safe at last.

From the time I picked Barbaree up in the ditch to the time I delivered her to the couch, Mr. Bentley had not had an opportunity to touch her. He was at my side on the way home, but not able to get to Barbaree. After Barbaree was placed on one of the EastWing couches, Mr. Bentley walked over and licked her injured paw.

Tears came to my eyes as I realized one of my dogs had, in all probability, saved the life of the other. Mr. Bentley continued to lick Barbarees right injured paw. Tranquility flooded the EastWing. The tribulation was over.

Stay safe in Afghanistan.

From The EastWing,The Tribulation, A Beagle Lost, Trapped In Steel, A Rescue Angel Named Bentley,  Bare Footed & Going Home

I Wish You Well,


“Touched By An Angel”



Carol Grubbs

The author of a newly published book of inspirational poems Carol is busy with a second book, she works in her church and volunteers for other community activities.  She also has visited forty-seven of the 50 states, missing only Washington, Alaska and Hawaii.  “Besides visiting those three states I’d like to eventually ride in a bubble top helicopter,” she revealed.

 For 24 years Carol has suffered from gestational diabetes, and is never without her little bag of supplies that has insulin, a finger stick calculator and glucose tablets among the items she carries.  She journals everything she eats, drinks lots of water and exercises daily.

‘’I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes when pregnant with my son Brian,” Carol said.  Gestational diabetes is a type 2 form of the disease and is caused by a hormonal change during pregnancy when a woman’s cells are less responsive to insulin.  Most women with gestational diabetes don’t have the disease after the baby is born, but in a few cases they do.   That is what happened in Carol’s case.

Carol certainly has lived an interesting life, having written for the Los Angeles Times while living in California, and working as a certified nursing assistant in several nursing homes.  “I don’t let the disease keep me down,” she said.  “One of the things  I do every week is sing in the choir on Sunday morning”   “And because of my  belief in angels I close my eyes and can hear the voice of my favorite high school teacher, the late John Whitenack, singing along with me.”  
Thank you Carol for your story.

From the EastWing, Holiday Time Coming, And The Survey Says, Sharolette & Barbaree & Their First Snow, The Email Being ObamaCare Only, Carter Gets Company, Just Over 3 ½ Years, Just Under 3 ½ Years, In Case I’m Gone.

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing,

Before we visit again Thanksgiving will have come and gone and we’ll all turn our collective attention to the Christmas Season. Ho, Ho, Ho will reign supreme and  many folks are going to be caught up in the “Christmas Spirit”. Which is just another way of saying “What did ya get me?”  Wal-Mart will be happy as usual, and so will China.  Every Christmas makes China a little more happy, and Wal-Mart a little more rich.

China’s happy because most of the dollars spent at Christmas time in the United States purchases goods manufactured in China. Can’t help but wonder where did we go wrong. Why did we as a nation give up quality for price?  We did. We just did. And it shows in just about anywhere you look.

Wal-Mart became the largest retailer in the whole world because the United Stated Citizens gave up quality for price. Remember the old saying “Ya get what ya pay for”? That still holds true, even at Wal-Mart. Quality merchandise has never been a high priority at Wal-Mart. Ya get what ya pay for.

Did you respond to one of those surveys asking if you were put out because the big box stores are opening up early on Thanksgiving evening? Now of all the dumbness in the world that’s right up there with the best of ‘em. If you’re opposed to a retail store hours of operation, don’t go there during those hours you oppose the store being open. Your opposition to such does not give you the right to condone or criticize any decision made by any retailer, ever. Retail business survives on sales, not on what you may or may not choose to check on a survey.  It just makes me so damn mad to see something as stupid as a survey by the local South Bend IN TV station asking “do you think it’s ok?”.  Shewwww.

Whatever happened to  the right of the retailer establishing their own hours of operation without public input.  The same people who would most likely be vocal in opposition to such a move by the big box retailers to open early Thanksgiving Evening would crap a brick if their own hourly rate at their place of employment  was put before the public for a yes or no pay raise vote.

 When you look at things differently, things look different.  They always do.  Sometimes the horse has to be lead to the water and told “Now drink damn it, or I’m gona give you a bad answer for the horse survey on water drinking”.

The first snow brought first time life experiences to the Beagle Girls, Sharolette and Barbaree. Being only seven months old, they had never had to deal with snow. The morning of November 12th brought the snow and a whole new life experience for the Beagle Girls, Sharolette and Barbaree.

The She got up before me on that cold November morning and had to push the Beagle Girls outside.  Seems they didn’t want to step into that white stuff that they’d never seen in their young lives. But once stepped into, they went directly to the garage and laid  under the heat lamp set up for the outside cats.  Now I’m not saying the Beagle Girls are wimps, I’m just saying they’ve got better things to do than walk in the snow & cold. They may turn out to be fair weather hunting Beagles.

No matter what I say about anything, the email continues to light up with ObamaCare. Only ObamaCare, 10 to 1, it’s ObamaCare.  I’m telling ya, folks are pissed off about this stuff. I’ve always thought that when the Federal Government messes with things that effects us on a very personal basis, we’ll raise hell. ObamaCare does that.  And as such, we’re raising hell.  The “administrative fix” offered by our President will not resolve our unrest. Real solutions, not political BS is the only answer to our unrest.

And so it is that the Obama Administration is at the point in history where I hopped would never be. An administration viewed as worse than the Carter Administration.  With Jimmy Carter being viewed by most as the most dysfunctional administration in the history of our country.

One thing we need to do is change the common name. From ObamaCare to Democratic ObamaCare. These guys own it lock stock and barrel. So let’s put his full name on the thing.  Let’s give full credit where credit is due. The Democratic ObamaCare Law is an excellent example of how dysfunctional our federal government has become in the last 70 years. Keep in mind this law was passed in congress and signed by the president without as single republican vote. So yes, it is  Democratic ObamaCare.

March 21st  2010 to October 1 2013 is 3 years, 6 months, 10 days.  Now that may seem like a long time to some, or it may seem like a short time to some. Any way ya look at it, it’s just a hair over 3 ½ years.

To keep things in prospective, December 7, 1941 to May 8, 1945 is 3 years 5 months and 1 day.  Any way ay look at this one, it’s just a hair under 3 ½ years.  Now what this time frame represents is from when we were attacked at Pearl Harbor to the day on which Germany surrendered to end the war in Europe.

During that time period we saw the mobilization of millions of workers, built tens of thousands of tanks, planes, jeeps, trucks, battleships, submarines, destroyers, U-boats and  torpedoes.  Millions upon millions of guns, bombs, bullets, and war supplies. We turned the tide of war in North Africa. We invaded Italy, thru the boot.  Fought our way onto the beaches of Normandy that D-Day. Won the Battle of the Bulge. Then raced like hellcats to Berlin. Oh, and I almost forgot to tell ya, we were also fighting the Japanese in the Pacific at the same time.  Yep,  we done all that in 3 years, 5 months and 1 day. Just a hair under 3 ½ years.

Now the Obama  Administration has worked for just a hair over 3 ½ years, and could not build a functional website at a cost of 600 million dollars. Which just goes to show ya, you can buy incompetence at any price you’re willing to pay and on any timeframe you’re willing to give.

As I set here in my beloved EastWing, I’m struck by the certainty that this party of mine, this thing I call life, must one day end.  Some day in the future, there will be a clear, cold morning when there isn’t any more BobbyRay. I will then have reached my end of time.


No more hugs, no more smiles, no more stories yet to tell, no more special moments to celebrate anything and everything, no more phone calls just to say hello, no more emails, no more  “Did you hear the one about…..” This is true for marriage, for family relationships, and especially, my old friendships here in the EastWing.


It seems to me that one of the important things to do before that cold clear morning comes to be , is to let every one of my family and friends know how much  I care for them, by finding simple ways to let them know my heartfelt beliefs and the guiding principles of my life so they can always say, “I’m glad BobbyRay was a friend of mine, and I always knew where he stood on everything.”


Now, with that being said, just in case I’m gone tomorrow, please forever know this well, now this very, very well.  ………..I voted against that incompetent, stupid, lying, insincere, double-talking, radical socialist, terrorist excusing, bleeding heart, narcissistic, scientific and economic moron, currently occupying the White House!


Stay safe in Afghanistan.


From the EastWing,  Holiday Time Coming, And The Survey Says, Sharolette & Barbaree & Their First Snow,  The Email Being ObamaCare Only, Carter Gets Company, Just Over 3 ½ Years, Just Under 3 ½ Years,  In Case I’m Gone.


I Wish You Well,


La Porte Diabetic Alters Her Lifestyle


Jeanne Perkins

“I should have known that something was wrong as I was feeling tired and run down for some time,” Jeanne said.  “I had a brother who died of complications from diabetes so I knew the long term prospect.”  Diabetes management is the key to living a fulfilling life so Jeanne became as knowledgeable as possible to what contributes to keeping sugar levels stable.  She even bought a digital scale to measure the weight of her food.  “I learned that it’s not always what you eat, but how much you eat and when you eat,” she said.  Jeanne counts carbs and watches her diet.   She has lost 15 pounds since her hospital stay.

“Exercise is another way to keep my sugar levels from spiking because muscles use glucose for energy,” she said.  Jeanne walks twice a day for 30 minutes, and always weighs after eating. She has also created a spreadsheet to measure her diet, and tests her blood sugar count 3 times a day.  “Many people might think my life is complicated because of my diabetes regimen, but I think I’m so lucky to have good medical people helping me keep on track,” she revealed.  “I think I’m really quite blessed.”

Thank you Jeanne for your story.

From The EastWing, First Snow, ObamaCare Jell-O & Duct Tape, Comet ISON & The Oort Cloud, Light Speed & Sun Shine Melting Comets, Talking To Cabbage, Space Things & I Love Lucy, Thanksgiving & Hot Water, Things That Make Ya Shiver.

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

The first snow of the season always brings a little excitement to everyone. Good excitement or bad excitement, either way the first snow brings a little change in the way you’re looking at the world right at the moment. When the snow came by this year for the first of the season, it was the lake effect snow from Lake Michigan. Yet snow is snow, and I don’t think it knows if  it lake effect snow. No matter what the source snow is snow.

Now I didn’t ask to receive  horror stories of people getting health insurance cancelation notices,  yet they come. They came as attachments to email, USPS delivery, telephone message, and by fax they came. Even go ‘em on my FaceBook account.

Now I’m not going back into that rats nest again, at least not right now, other than to say, “You can’t fix melting Jell-O with duct tape. And it will melt, even the duct tape will melt given enough heat”.

Remember that sky show thing I was talking about last January? It’s time has now come. I can now see Comet ISON with binoculars (15X70 optics). Only one thing, ya gotta get up early in the morning, like 4:00 in the AM, and look to the east. Looking toward the soon to be sun rise, Comet ISON is now easy to be seen with good binoculars or even a small telescope.

Thanksgiving Day is the day when Comet ISON will come the closest to the sun. Within 730,000 miles of the surface the comet will fly by. Heating up to some 5,000° Celsius. Now I don’t care who ya are, that hot, like vaporize most anything you can think of, faster than you can think of it. Yep, that’s hot.

And if all the dirt and ice and star stuff that make up the Comet ISON don’t get vaporized on the back side of the sun, it’s show time for sure. Stargazers are really interested in Comet ISON simply because if it survives the encounter with the sun it most assuredly will put on the best sky show in a long, long time.

One of the interesting things about Comet ISON is this a new comet that has never come into our field of view before. By it course, we can tell where it came from and barring any vaporization from the sun, we can tell where it will go. Comet ISON is making its first trip to the inner solar system from the distant and frigid Oort Cloud.

The Oort Cloud brings a whole new meaning to being kinda cool. It’s thought to comprise two separate regions: a spherical outer Oort cloud and a disc-shaped inner Oort cloud, or Hills cloud. Objects in the Oort cloud are largely composed of ices, such as water, ammonia, and methane. This is where the comets we see here on Earth come from. Of course the most famous comet out there being Haley’s Comet. It too came from the Oort Cloud. They all do. The Oort Cloud is a one stop comet shop.

This home of the comets, the Oort Cloud is almost a full light year from our Sun. Now for those folks measuring such things, One light year is the distance light can travel in one year. Knowing that light will travel 186,000 miles in one second, that means 11,160,000 miles in one minute.  If you multiply that by 60 times 24 times 365.   You can see where the math is going on this thing. We’re talking a lot of zeros in the answer as to the miles in one light year. Just go with me on this one, it’s a really long ways.

Its kinda ironic to think I’m talking about something from the very early beginning to time, coming from the most frigid place in outer space, containing what we can only speculate, but surely must be star stuff, possibly being destroyed by the heat of our sun. Our sun, the single reason life here on Earth can survive.  Did you ever wonder what other life forms call Earth when they look at us from their vantage point in the sky?

Maybe we’re just a number. Maybe they don’t use numbers. Maybe they have a different way of identifying stuff without numbers. Did ye ever wonder why every time you see other life forms depicted in books, movies or whatever, it’s always human like except real ugly. Why always human like, except ugly?

Maybe just a cabbage  plant that can think, not move, just think. Course I’ve seen some people that remind me of cabbage plants, so maybe I’m not too far off here. Seems somewhere I remember someone said they walk among us. Maybe they just grow among us in our gardens. I never did like cabbage but the She always grows the Ornamental Cabbage in the EastWing gardens ever year. Next time I go by, maybe I should say “hello cabbage”.  Sure hope I don’t get a response.

Another thing that always makes me mad is why we always assume the other life forms are far more advance than us? Duh. Knowing full well that all radio and TV signals once broadcast travel into space forever, we broadcast I Love Lucy over 60 years ago. And if that don’t speak to our level of intellect, nothing will. And I’m not even gona talk about the Honeymooners and Jackie Gleason.

And so it is as this year, 2013 is rapidly flooding  into the holiday season of year end with Thanksgiving, start of winter, Christmas, and New Years Eve all yet before us. It so much fun to set in the EastWing, looking into the darkness of 5 PM and enjoying this time of the year.

As the Thanksgiving Holiday approaches, it’s once again time to thank God for, maybe not the major blessings in your life but how about the little things that you never even think about as being a blessing from God. Hot water. Most of those who will visit the EastWing every Sunday Evening, have hot water available in their lives without even thinking about it. Just turn the left knob at the sink or shower and hot water happens.

Not the whole world is so blessed. I was reminded a while back of the fact that we Americans take so much for granted. Hot water being one such thing. I had to admit that I too, took hot water for granted. In an email conversation with an EastWing friend in South Africa, I was provided with a list of things the people in that town dreamed of owning. This was a town that received electricity, telephone, and internet service all within the same year. Top of the wish list, hot running water.

I just never thought of life without hot water. Spend a little time thinking about that and you’ll look at life a whole lot different from then on. And you’ll have a better life because of it. Just a little gift from God that you somehow overlooked. Hot water.

Three more days to the next dental appointment. Shivers all around. Somehow dental appointments do that to ya, even though I’ve got the best.

Stay safe in Afghanistan.

From The EastWing, First Snow, ObamaCare Jell-O & Duct Tape, Comet ISON & The Oort Cloud,  Light Speed & Sun Shine Melting Comets, Talking To Cabbage, Space Things & I Love Lucy, Thanksgiving & Hot Water, Things That Make Ya Shiver.

I Wish You Well,


Diabetes Then and Now


Chris Milner

Chris Milner

In the year 1960, my then brother Dave had a bout of severe flu.  He had a very high fever with convulsions.  When taken to his doctor, James F. Denaut, MD. In Knox, he was tested and it was determined that he had “sugar diabetes,” as it was known then.

After a stint in the hospital to regulate his blood sugar and to instruct my mother on how to give an insulin shot, he was finally released to come home.

Back then, there were no easy home blood testing methods.  The only way my mom could test my brother’s sugar levels at home was by a urine test that would indicate whether the sugar was low, normal or high.

Shots were not the disposable kind.  The stainless steel needles had to be boiled each time before using.  He was taking multiple shots per day, so the needles could become very dull very fast.  After my brother became a teenager he took over giving himself shots in his legs and stomach.

Being a diabetic in the 60’s was not like it is today.  I can remember many incidents where my brother would slip into a diabetic shock.  We named them :Mickey Mouses.”  When he hallucinated and was unresponsive we gave him orange juice with sugar in it to elevate his low blood sugar.  It was all we had back then.

When my brother turned 21 he started having kidney issues.  Diabetes, kidney and heart issues all go hand in hand.  In 1976 his kidneys were failing and he had to go on dialysis.  The closest center was in South Bend.  He went 3 times a week for kidney dialysis to remove the toxins from his system.

Our family was tested at that time to see if one of us could donate a kidney.  We all went to Indianapolis for the testing.  My father and I were both of the same O+ blood type.  My father went first for more testing and it was found that he had blockage in his arteries leading to his kidneys and they would not let him donate.

It was then my turn to be tested.  After blood testing and other procedures, it was determined that I was “Pre-Diabetic” and they would not let me donate one of my kidneys.  They felt that in my older years I would also become diabetic and need both of my kidneys.

My brother went on the National Transplant registry for a suitable cadaver kidney donation.  After waiting about a year the call came in saying a kidney had been located.  My parents and brother went to Rochester, Minnesota for the transplant.  At first it went well and he was within days of the 90 day mark when most transplants are deemed successful.  Unfortunately his new kidney started to fail and it had to be removed.  He was put back on dialysis.

The dialysis was a wear and tear on my brother’s arteries, and on March 31st. 1980 he suffered a fatal heart attack at the age of 25.

The diagnosis and treatment for diabetes has advanced so much in the years since my brother’s illness.  We can now thank modern technology for making diabetes a manageable condition.  I only wish it had come sooner.

Thank you Chris Milner for your story.   

From the EastWing, ObamaCare, Now We Know & We Don’t Like, And The Survey Says, Big Government According To Genesis, Pharaoh Freebees & Cell Phones.

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

WOW! Even at the EastWing, ObamaCare dominates the email.  No matter what I’ve said in the past. Agree or disagree, it’s ObamaCare as to what the email brings to me. And I didn’t even say too much about it one way or the other.

But WOW! I’m telling ya, this is what has made we the people just shy of an angry mob. ObamaCare may be the worst federal law in the history of the nation.  When the then Speaker of The House said “We have to pass this bill to find out what’s in it.” We have now found out. This nation has gone a little crazy about this law. It just has. And there’s lots more to come.

It turns out the President of the United States lied to the American People in order to get the bill passed into law. An interesting side note here. It is not a crime for the President of the United States to lie to the American. It is a crime to lie to congress.  DUH! The least respected body in our society, it’s a crime to tell ‘em lies. Now we the people, give us all the Bull Shit that can mustered by the President of The United State, himself, and that’s not a crime.  Seems there’s something wrong with this picture.

With such a response to  something  I didn’t even talk about very much, I looked into the details of the ObamaCare Law and this is what I found. Now get a load of this.

An example being you are a single male, 35 years old, you  are required to purchase health insurance, and your policy must provide coverage in the event you have a baby. Not that you’re gona have that baby, just your health insurance must provide you with the coverage. DUH!  Your policy must also provide for birth control coverage.  Also DUH!

It’s a one stop shop. NOT!  The ObamaCare Law is a classic example of federal regulation run wild.  This thing was not put together after Obama was elected. No, it was  twenty years of liberal bureaucrats  plotting to create a national health care program.  It’s a mindset thing. Big government provides for the masses.  Socialism, some think so. Marxism, some think so. Dumber than Owl Shit, many think so. The people who voted this ObamaCare into law will pay the price at the ballot box next time out.

All the other scandals which have surrounded this administration, things like the IRS being used to go after political enemies, the embarrassment  of having Hillary Clinton say “at this late date, what difference does it make?” after 4 Americans had died on her watch. Such matters seem  to have been brushed aside by the president. ObamaCare is different.

It’s different simply because it affects you and me, and everybody else in this great land. The issue of this healthcare law is the one thing that is not going away from the public view. We as a people tend to not pay nearly enough attention to what goes on by those we elect to make the rules we live by. At every level of government, we pay way too little attention to what goes on. The result of that neglect of our collective duty, we get the type government we deserve. In some instances it’s crap. With a capital K.

It’s kinda disheartening  to see a survey that states less than 40% of the people believe the President of the United State is doing a good job. While the same survey states over 80% believe the President of the United States miss lead the American People on purpose to get this ObamaCare thing passed into law. And it all goes back to what was said earlier, we get the form of government we deserve.

It’s interesting that in our political process in this nation, one thought is the more the government controls the better off we are. While the other thought is the less the government controls the better off we are. No I don’t really care which side of that rope you’re on. But one thing for sure, you’re on one side or the other of that deal, ‘cause there’s no middle ground on that one.

Keep in mind here, I didn’t even talk about the disaster of the website. Or even the cost of such. Didn’t need to, those things take care of themselves. Even without use paying much attention to what’s going on, ya can’t spend 600 million dollars and nobody notices you bought something that doesn’t work.  No one has of yet even estimated the cost of making this website work. While some are even saying the whole system must be rebuilt from the ground up, so to speak, in order to make it work the way it was envisioned. I can’t say intended here ‘cause I don’t believe anyone had a clue as to what it was supposed to be.

Nor have I said anything about the whole concept of “navigators” or the millions and millions of dollars down that rat hole. Nor have I said anything about when the person, who admitted to being in charge of the whole sorry mess, responded to an direct question asked in a congressional hearing, that yes a convicted felon could be hired and obtain the necessary personal information to steal a person’s identify without that person’s knowledge. And it just keeps getting dumber and dumber. It’s just such stuff the still leads me to believe we do deserve what we get. It’s our own fault that we don’t pay attention and let the crazies of the world make the laws.

Of course the fight for big government has gone on forever. Yeah, I’m telling ya forever. Just read the 47th chapter of Genesis, verse 13 – 27. Now what you’re going to find there is a story of how a once prosperous people became slaves. More and more dependent on the government they became until such time they had no personal wealth left. All belonged to the pharaoh.

It turned out the Pharaoh provided Israelites with food stamps, rent assistance, well child care, hot lunch program at school, medical care, transportation, and a free cell phone. Oh no, I was wrong about the free cell phone, that was a different Pharaoh.

From the EastWing, ObamaCare, Now We Know & We Don’t Like, And The Survey Says, Big Government According To Genesis, Pharaoh Freebees & Cell Phones.

I Wish You Well,


From The EastWing, Sleeping On Sophia’s Pillow, Loving November, Not Badmouthing ObamaCare Don’t Need To, Mamas Birthday & Ponda Rosa, A Girl Dog Named Barbee

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

One of the things I’ve learned in the last couple weeks is if Sophia decides to sleep on the corner of the pillow you’re laying on, you’ve got two choices.  One is to scoot over and give Sophia a little room. Two is stay awake all night and watch Sophia sleep on the pillow all by herself.

Now I’m not saying Sophia gets her way here at the EastWing when it comes to sleeping, I’m just saying sometimes a person’s gotta do what a person’s  gotta do when it comes to sleeping with a cat. Especially a damn Republican Cat.

I love November! This is truly the transitional month of fall to winter. It goes from a little bit cold, to cold. From a little bit of bad weather to a lot of bad weather.  It’s just November. After all, any month that has both Thanksgiving and the birthday of the She in the same 30 day period,  ya gotta love it.

I’ve had several people ask my thoughts on the disastrous introduction of the ObamaCare sign up web site. Nothing I can say can be added to the fray. I will say that computer programming is much like everything else in life. When it works right, no one cares about how hard it was to make it work out that way. When it does not work right, they know. They all just know.

When all the crap is said and done about this ObamaCare web site, the fact that it did not work is going to be secondary to the way the construction work on the thing was awarded. The single most expensive piece of computer programming ever purchased and the Federal Government did not put the job up for bid. I’m not saying this side of the disaster smells, you’ll make your own judgment on the facts of this thing. Why this massive contract was not put out for public bid will be interesting in deed.

Just last week this administration tried to take bids on the sunshine available on federal land out west.   No one would bid without knowing the specific federal regulations that would control the development of solar energy and the use of the sunshine. Three companies had expressed some interest in possible development of a solar energy company. They were told they had to get into the bid process in order to find out the rules.

This sunshine auction may have been set up by Nancy Pelosi.  After all, wasn’t she the one who said of the  ObamaCare program, “we have to pass the bill in order to find out what’s in it”?

Lots of negative things I could say about the ObamaCare Website, no need to. Let the dysfunctional site speak for its self. I will just say, too bad we the people have to pay for this damn fiasco twice. Once to get it made, and once to make it work.

Did ya turn the clock back an hour? If not, you’re reading this one hour too fast. So just stop until time catches up with you.  ‘Cause we’re on daylight savings time now. And it’s not right to continue to read from the EastWing on “summer time”. Things like that are not right. Just saying.

Have you ever seen the fall colors in the leaves hang in there this late in the year? Here it’s November 3rd and most of the leaves are still on the trees and most of the color is still in the leaves.

Today, November 3rd was my Mamas birthday, so in remembrance of Mama’s birthday,  my sister Sharolette and I, along with her husband Dexter, and my son John and his wife Jaimie, and of course  the She, we all went to the Ponda Rosa in Plymouth IN. Now we went to the Ponda Rosa in Plymouth because that was my Mamas most favorite restaurant in the whole world. Now Mama loved the Ponda Rosa even over Richards of Toto.

 With my Mama, when it’s over Richard of Toto,  that’s a lot, that’s a whole lot. My son John and I took Mama to lunch at Richards of Toto every Friday for many years.  She loved it, and so did we.

At Richards of Toto, we introduced Mama to an Indiana State Senator, She said “I think you’re a Republican”. He gave her candy as a birthday present. She didn’t say she’d vote for him, but did say she’d remember his name the next time she voted. Mama did not miss a single opportunity to vote in her whole life. Mama passed away before she had the opportunity to remember that state senator.   So we’ll never know, but Ed knows the won a democrat that day in downtown Toto with me and Mama.

One of the many joys of the Beagle Girl Dogs is their ability to act like coon dogs. And the Barbara Beagle can howl with the best of ‘em. I’ve decided to officially change the name of Barbara Beagle to Barbee Beagle.

Let me explain this change here. My oldest sister, Thelma, was born some 20 years before me, and spent most all her life in southeastern Kentucky. That’s the part of the Kentucky mountains that still speaks an undulated form of the “Old Kings English” And so Thelma spoke the old style language. The pronunciation of letters were different in the Old Kings English.

Barbara sounded more like Barbee. Sister Thelma always pronounced my sister Barbara’s as Barbree. It’s only fitting that my baby Beagle Girl be called Barbee. After all it’s in honor of my sisters that I named the Beagles. So it’s Sharolette and Barbee from now on. Oh by the way, it’s not like I’m changing her name, I’ve forever called her Barbee, from day one, and she does know her name as Barbee. I’m just now getting around to telling you about it. Barbee Beagle, just one of my girl dogs.

Did ya ever notice it’s a lot more easy to get use to “fast time” than “slow time”. Don’t know why but it just is. At least here in the EastWing it is. And I’m still  wondering why it takes so long with this slow time stuff.

And for all those folks bitching about me not putting up the pictures on FaceBook like I said I would, give me a break here. You move faster than I do. We’ll get to it, just not at your speed. At mine.

Stay safe in Afghanistan.

From The EastWing, Sleeping On Sophia’s Pillow, Loving November, Not Badmouthing ObamaCare Don’t Need To, Mamas Birthday & Ponda Rosa, A Girl Dog Named Barbee

I Wish You Well,


Knox Woman Describes “A Day In The Life Of A Diabetic.”


Becky Czarnecki

Becky Czarnecki

For Becky Czarnecki the day begins with the first of four insulin injections taken to control her blood sugar. She is one of hundreds of Starke County residents with diabetes, or pre-diabetes.

I was diagnosed with diabetes in 2009 after sugar tests confirmed that I had the disease,” Becky said. Even with medicines and the insulin injections, the woman who has been the bailiff in the Knox City Court for 20 years, is hampered by her illness.

About 2 years ago I developed what is called neuropathy feet. This condition includes pain, and burning sensations in my feet, which in turn makes it difficult to walk,” she said. Becky has been told that there is no cure for neuropathy, but by losing weight, exercising, and correcting her diet she can help control this aspect of her diabetes. “People take walking for granted, but if you’re like me it’s a daily struggle. I try to exercise when I can by using a walker.” she revealed.

Another concern is her blood sugar numbers which are checked regularly. Becky is happy these numbers have recently been coming down, because keeping the blood sugar stable prevents sugar highs and lows.

I urge people all the time to take advantage of glucose screenings, and tests. This is a terrible disease that needs to be diagnosed as early as possible,” Becky advised.

Thank you Becky for your story. Indiana University Health-Starke Hospital and WKVI Radio are presenting these stories to focus your attention on the danger of diabetes. There are no clear symptoms of pre-diabetes, so, you may have it and not know it. Pre-diabetes is a condition when your blood sugar is higher than normal but not high enough to be diabetes. This condition puts you at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

Glucose screening is a test that indicates blood sugar levels that are elevated. This is not a definitive diagnoses, but indicates that you need to contact your doctor for further testing.

Famous Celebrity Reveals Her Diabetic Odyssey

        Famous Celebrity Reveals Her Diabetic Odyssey


Halle Berry

Halle Berry

She’s recognized as one of the most glamorous women in Hollywood, but fame and glamor didn’t spare her from suffering from type 2 diabetes throughout her acting career.  Yes, Halle Berry has learned how to manage a career, marriage and motherhood with a disease that at one time left her in a diabetic coma for a week.  Here’s her story.

As the cameras rolled, the young actress knew she desperately needed to lie down.  But before she could do anything she collapsed on set and was rushed to a hospital.

Hollywood star Halle Berry then lay dangerously ill in a diabetic coma for a week before waking to a life that would never be the same again.

Unconscious for a week:  “I thought I could tough it out, but I couldn’t have been

more wrong,” she says.  “One day, I simply passed out, and I didn’t wake up for seven days.  Diabetes caught me completely off guard.  I thought I was pretty healthy.”

Type 2 Diabetes can take years to develop, with suffers experiencing symptoms like Halle’s constant feelings of tiredness.  Others include blurred vision, weight loss, raging thirst, and tingling in the hands and feet.

Following her hospital stay Halle said she had to change her life style.  “I started to eat loads of wonderful fresh vegetables, chicken, fresh fish and pasta.  I cut out red meat and cut back on fruit because it can contain quite a lot of sugar.  Now one of my favorite dishes is something simple but tasty such as grilled tuna and garlic mashed potatoes,” she said.

But it wasn’t just her food intake that had to change she included exercise and reduced her stress too.  The final piece of the jigsaw in Halle’s successful diabetes management was control of her blood sugar and insulin levels.  “I have to test my blood sugar levels at least a couple of times a day,” she explains.  She also injects herself with the correct doses of insulin each day.  And oh yes, she does public speaking on living with the condition.

Thank you Halle Berry for sharing your story.  There are hundreds of local people who battle the condition each and every day.  We will tell you their stories in November.      

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

Yep, got an iPad2 the other day. Had an android some time back. Didn’t like it. Took it back inside the 30 days trial period from Best Buy and got my money back. That was then, this is now. Yep, got an iPad2, kinda like this feller. Having fun with the iPad. It’s just another kinda  big boy toy.

When the She spots something on TV or reads in her magazines things that starts out with a WWW, she tells me and I go find it, and get what the She wants. Cause everybody knows the old saying of “When the She’s happy, everybody’s happy”. That was true as far  back as when the Hebrews were slaves, and still holds true to this day.

It was the second week of the new iPad being at home in the EastWing when the She wanted information on a thing called the  Mediterranean Diet. This was the opportunity of a lifetime to introduce the She to the iPad. And so the plan unfolded.

In the past when the She wants a book, she tells me the title and I go on, order the book and the UPS guy brings the book to the She at Pioneer Florist in two or three days. This time it was going to be different.

The first step was to get an app to read books on the iPad, the second step was to find a book on the Mediterranean Diet that would work on the iPad. In short order I had the Mediterranean Diet Book inside the iPad. Game on.


I approached the She with what seemed like a normal question. “What was the name of that book, again?” I said. She repeated the book title. It was at that point I reached her the iPad and said “touch that little picture right there and see what happens.” She touched, and the Mediterranean Diet Book  she had asked for, not even 10 minutes prior, was in her hands. Gona get the She an iPad for her birthday, come November Friday before Thanksgiving Thursday.


Much of what I do on the computers of RHCO INC I can do on the iPad. Now the computer stuff that pays the bills at RHCO INC.  that kinda stuff, I can’t do on the iPad. Most if not all that stuff does not fit at all on the iPad. But that playing with the computer part I do in my office, that part, it’s a natural for the iPad. That stuff fits the iPad like Peas & Carrots. 


That reminds me of the time, a long ways back when I said something fits like Peas & Carrots that a lady ripped me like there was no tomorrow. Said she hated peas & carrots and her mother made her eat the damn things every time they was served for supper. She even hated to say the words peas & carrots. If I ever said those peas and carrots words again, said she would never visit the EastWing again. WOW! Now that’s what I call getting upset about peas & carrots. Shewwww. Think about it for a little while, people who get that upset about peas & carrots, they just have way too much time or their hands, if you ask me.


When I used to be a little hillbilly boy in downtown Toto, the biggest of big holidays was Halloween. We didn’t get a whole hell of a lot of toys for Christmas. I always wanted things like cap guns, toy cars & trucks, board games. But I mostly got pants, socks, under ware and one time I even got a new pair of shoes. All stuff you could wear to school. So for us, it was Halloween for the good stuff.


That was the day, or should I say the night that made the wait worthwhile. Ya walked in the darkness. It was the time of the Toto Volunteers. An army of which I generaled with more love and affection than one could have thought possible, yet I did. On Halloween, we marched to trick or treat.  We were afraid and yet comforted by the security of those close by. We truly a band of brothers, the Toto Volunteers. Scary and happy at the same time makes for an exciting Halloween. Did then. Still will, come Thursday.


One of the fun things about Halloween was the carving of the Jack-O’-Lanterns a few days before. It was the carving of the Jack-O’-Lanterns that started off the holiday season for the Toto Kids. Having both Irish and Scotch ancestry I’m very aware of the origin of Ole Stingy Jack. Now Stingy Jack was a man who had a fight with the devil, and the devil lost the first round.  Stingy Jack was most adapt at tricking most everyone, even the devil.


The way Grandpa Bob told me the story was that Ole Stingy Jack convinced the devil to turn himself into a coin  so Jack could pay for something he wanted to buy. But jack trapped the devil in the form of a coin by placing him next to a cross. But I heard another story that said Jack convinced the devil to climb a tree and trapped him up the tree by carving a cross on the trunk of the tree. Either way, Jack would only let the devil go free if he agreed to never take Jack’s soul into hell.


And so it was that Jack died,  and he was refused entry into  heaven for being such a bad ass. Then the devil locked him out of hell just because he was still mad about the deal Jack pulled on him. But the devil really wanted Jack into the fires of Hell, so he gave him an ember just to remind Jack where he really belonged.

With, forever, nowhere to go, Jack wandered the whole world using only an ember from the fires of hell, given to him by the devil himself. Jack placed the ember in a carved-out turnip for light in the darkness of night. From then on, he was known as “Jack of the Lantern from Hell”.


In Ireland and Scotland people started carving scary faces into turnip and potatoes and placing theses homemade lanterns by their doors to scare off evil spirits.  Now when these people, those Irish an Scotch folks, came to the land of the free and the home of the brave, and didn’t find a lot of turnips and potatoes, guess what they turned to?  Yep, ya got that right,  they carved the things that grew in their new land, the pumpkins, were carved  into the Jack-O-Lanterns.


Fall colors in full view at the EastWing. WOW!  In living color. Nothing is more spectacular than the fall colors of the leaves in beautiful Technicolor at the EastWing. Even the movies can’t do justice to the fall colors of Mother Nature. I’m taking pictures of the EastWing colors with the iPad and will put up on FaceBook. Can’t do ‘em for reasons stated many times from the EastWing. Will do ‘em on FaceBook.   Beagles in living color to come on FaceBook, may even throw in a Sophia or two. If the cat will pose, but don’t hold your breath for pictures of Sophia. She’ll pose only when ready, damn Republican Cat.

Stay safe in Afghanistan.

From The EastWing, The iPad & The She, Peas & Carrots, Halloween & The Toto Kids, Carving ‘Em Up, Stingy Jack & The Devil, EastWing In Living Color, iPad & Pictures To Follow,


I Wish You Well,


A Day In The Life of Diabetes


A Day In The Life of Diabetes

This November Indiana University Health Starke Hospital in cooperation with WKVI radio will present a series on Diabetes. We’ll present the stories of local people with this disease and showcase the extraordinary effort it takes to live a day in their shoes.

With nearly 26 million children and adults afflicted with the disease in the U.S. and an additional 79 million at risk for type 2 diabetes, it has reached epidemic proportions. Recent estimates project that as many as one in three American adults will have diabetes in 2050 unless we take steps to stop this disease.

If you know of someone who is living with diabetes 24/7 please contact Ted Hayes at Indiana University Health Starke Hospital, and you just might be able to tell your story on this site. Call Ted at 772-1198, and be looking for your friends and neighbors right here on the WKVI web. They’ll be telling their stories, beginning Friday, November 1st.

Sophia And The Vote, Voter ID & Winning States, Juan Valdez Votes While Picking Coffee Beans, Undocumented Citizens & Nancy Pelosi & The Thunderbird-Not The Car The Idiot, PPR People

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

Just as sure as the sun coming up in the morning, if two or three weeks go by without much being said of Sophia, the Calico Conservative Republican Cat, the email lights up with a herd of elephants wanting to know what’s wrong with Sophia and is she okay. Or has she done the unthinkable of all unthinkables and gone to the dark side. The donkey side of life.

Rest assured Sophia has not gone down the donkey trail. As a matter of fact, just yesterday she stormed into the EastWing with an email in paw that she’d just received identifying voting patterns in the last presidential election. Talk about a mad cat. WOW! Fit to be tied is an understatement to say the least, the cat was beside yourself with anger. What, you may ask has brought out the wrath of Sophia. A anger that put the cat in the cradle.

Actually is was simply the official record of vote in a variety of districts and precincts from various parts of the country. Keep in mind that once the official vote tally is certified it all becomes public record. Someone went into the detail of the public record looking for what could be construed as voter fraud. And they found:

In 59 voting districts in the Philadelphia region, Obama received 100% of the votes with not even a single vote recorded for Romney.   In 21 districts in Wood County Ohio, Obama received 100% of the votes where GOP inspectors were removed from their polling locations – and not one single vote was recorded for Romney.     In Wood County Ohio, 106,258 voted in a county with only 98,213 eligible voters.  In St. Lucie County, FL, there were 175,574 registered eligible voters but 247,713 votes were cast.  The National SEAL Museum, a polling location in St. Lucie County, FL had a 158% voter turnout. Palm Beach County, FL had a 141% voter turnout. In one Ohio County, Obama won by 108% of the total number of eligible voters.

I suggested Sophia first verify the validity of the data, she did. It is. In the process of validating the data another interesting fact surfaced. President Obama won in every state that does not require a voter ID. He lost in every state that does require a voter ID.

From the interesting results of the official vote tally, one may conclude that the whole United States would be in favor of a National Voter Identification Law. So it seems, not so fast says the democrats. “You are trying to limit the voting rights of the minorities, the down trodden, the least of our society. You are trying to skew the vote in favor of the damn republicans.  You are trying to disenfranchise a large segment of the African-Americans, you  racist you.”  When they play the race card, everybody backs off, by not wanting to be call a racist. Being called a racist, as if it’s a white boy thing, I don’t think so.

We don’t play race cards at the EastWing, nor do we shy away from the race cards. We call ‘em as we see ‘em. Don’t like what we say from the EastWing, delete us from your email access.  But don’t give us this racist crap.  Our society requires a photo ID to cash a check at Wal-Mart, to buy whisky and cigarettes.  In our society, we cannot even buy an automobile for cash without proving where we got the cash. Buy a house for cash, it can’t be done without proof of where the cash came from. We cannot obtain a drivers license in the State of Indiana without three forms of identification, including a photo ID.

The same government that forces one to prove who you are whenever you want to do many different legitimate business transactions, that same government will allow you to vote for who becomes the president of the United States, even if your name is Juan Valdez and yesterday you were picking coffee beans on a mountain side in Columbia. Just think about that for a little while.

Do you want the likes of a “Juan Valdez” selecting your president? Now if you’re one of those in our society who is only looking for what you can get for free from this society, yeah, I guess you would want a “Juan Valdez” type to vote, ‘cause he’d vote the “right way” to keep the freebies flowing your way. On the other hand, if you are a true citizen of the this great nation, you take the position of “hell no”, voting is a privilege reserved exclusively for American Citizens” And as such, you would have no problems with a national voter ID law.

Most everyone agrees that we have some 10 – 14 million illegal aliens in this country. What the hell, we don’t even know how many illegal aliens.  The progressive members of our society prefer to call them “undocumented citizens” BULL SHIT!  Illegal aliens will forever be illegal aliens. You can call ‘em whatever you want, the fact remains, you’re either are a citizen of this great nation, these United States, or you are not.

 Undocumented citizen, give me a break here. It’s a yes or no thing. Undocumented citizen is much the same as being a little bit pregnant. If you are, it’s a boy or it’s a girl, it’s not an undocumented baby. That level of stupidity  is the sound of  Nancy Pelosi, and everybody, even the members of her own political party, know she’s the thunderbird from the weird part of San Francisco.  A democrat who is able to make the most outrageous statements in the world, in public, and not laugh out loud. She was the one who said of the Obama care law, “we have to pass it to see what’s inside it.” They did and now are finding out that we the people don’t like what we see, nor do they.

Oh, by the way on that Obamacare web site, the most expensive web site ever created. Costing more than a half BILLION DOLLARS, and written with 10 year old technology. A computer program which seems doomed to failure due to the way in which it was put together, by a Canadian company who was awarded the contract to produce the website without ever having made a bid for the job or ever producing anything remotely similar to the project. This is another one of “we’ll see”

And so Sophia is left holding the email depicting the official vote tally showing, by everyone’s measure of fairness, potential voter fraud in every state that does not require a voter ID. Every state not having a voter ID law, voted last to the democratic side. In some parts of those state, voted last to the democratic side to the tune of 158% of the eligible voters.

So what would one say in response to being in favor of a national voter identification law, and then being called incentive, an extremist, a bigot, a racist? Now if you think what’s right is right, and what’s wrong is wrong, how about just saying,  SCREW YOU, YOU PIMP PUSHING RACISM  PEOPLE!

Say safe in Afghanistan.

From The EastWing, Sophia And The Vote, Voter ID & Winning States, Juan Valdez Votes While Picking Coffee Beans, Undocumented Citizens & Nancy Pelosi & The Thunderbird-Not The Car The Idiot, PPR People

I wish you well,


From the EastWing, A Starfish Saved, PPR Not Coming To Town, Surgery On The Girl Dogs, Humpty Dumpty& Super Glue

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

An old man was walking south along the beach, to his left, the ocean, even farther to his left, across the water was another world. A world he’d never seen. To his right was the rest of he knew.  As he walked he was looking at the white sand and of the things brought up from the sea by  the tides that wash the sands of the beach every twelve hours.

Walking along he came upon a young boy gathering up starfish, carrying them down to the water’s edge, and throwing them out into the ocean. Then the boy repeated the process over and over again.

The old man said “Young man what are you doing?” The boy replied “ I’m saving the starfish”. “What do you mean, saving the starfish?” the old man asked. The boy said, “These starfish got washed up on the beach and can’t get back to the water. If I don’t save them, they’ll surely die”.

The old man laughed and said “Son, you can’t save the starfish, this beach runs for thousands of miles, and there are millions of starfish washed up on the sand. You can’t possibly save the starfish.” The child stood and looked at the old man with the bright eyes of youth as he was being told of the impossibility of even trying to save the starfish. He listened with the ears of innocence as he was being told of the impossibility of even trying to save the starfish.

When the old man finished speaking the boy smiled, turned, picked up a starfish, ran to the water’s edge and threw the starfish with all his mite back into the ocean. The old man said “Son, didn’t you hear a single word of what I just said? You can’t save the starfish”.

Wearing a  smile you could see a mile, with blue eyes gleaming in the sunshine, the child said “ I saved that one.”

In Nashville, a couple weeks ago, just before we set the Guinness Book of World Records for meal packaging in one hour. We didn’t solve all the world hunger. We solved one. The starfish, just think about it when you life’s troubles seem overwhelming. Just solve one and then you’re on your way to solving  ‘em all.

From time to time the email gets loaded down with the same question and it’s easier to answer at  Sunday Night in the EastWing than one on one. And so the time has come. The Italics pose the question.

Did anyone come and protest at your office in North Judson?  No and I’m disappointed. After all the BS threats and innuendoes. I did get an email demanding an official letter of apology for the harsh words spoken against Rainbow Push and the Rev. Jessie Jackson. So I send an email apology of sorts. On official RHCO Letter Head Paper, I apologized for not including  Louis Farrakhan in that group I called “People Pushing Racism, Bastards”. Haven’t heard back from that email yet. We’ll see.

October was barely two days old and it was the  scheduled date for Beagle Surgery. Boy, does time fly when you’re having fun with Baby Beagle Girls. Upon their arrival at the EastWing, Sharolette  was 2 lb 8 oz and  Barbara weighed 3 lb 6 oz. almost a full pound difference between the girl dogs.

That one pound difference in the Girl Dogs has stretched to almost two pounds. But the tide has turned for the heaviest Beagle at the EastWing. On surgery morning, Barbara Beagle weighed in at 20.00 pounds and Sister Sharolette Beagle came in at 21.80 pounds, thank you very much.   And so the Beagles were checked into the facility and I was given instructions to call after 3:00 PM to check on their progress.

3:01 in the PM found me on the phone with the Vets office to check on the Beagle Girls. The first thing the lady who answered the phone said when I identified myself was, as she laughed “why didn’t you tell me that we can’t separate Sharolette and Barbara”. She then told me that upon arrival, they had placed the girls in separate cages where they could not see each other.   Both girls howled nonstop. This is a place accustom to having animals not used to their surroundings . As time went by, the Beagles, rather than becoming accustom to the new place, intensified their displeasure of being separated. It’s a Beagle thing with Sharolette and Barbara.

A staff member thought maybe they should be placed together to see if they would stop howling. So they moved them into a two animal holding chamber. And just like that, the Kouts Animal Clinic once again became Tranquility Base.   It remained so until time for the first surgery.

Barbara’s surgery was scheduled first. Within seconds of Barbara being removed from the cage. Sharolette started to let her displeasure of being along know to all within ear shot. The whole Kouts Animal Clinic was within ear shot.   It was during the surgery, with the howling of Sharolette making it hard to carry on conversations at the operating table that Dr. Bob said “go get Sharolette and hold her at the foot of the table.” When Sharolette arrived at the foot of the operating table, and smelled Sister Barbara. The sound of silence.

Under normal procedures, the patient animal is returned to the holding cage and the other is taken to the surgery table. The howling Beagles were not normal procedures.  As Dr. Bob finished the surgical procedure on Barbara, he instructed the staff to simply swap places with Barbara and Sharolette. So Barbara, still under the influence of general anesthetic, lay at the  foot of the operating table while Sharolette, also went to sleep.

What needed to be done to Sharolette and Barbara was done to Sharolette and Barbara. Then when it was time to put the Beagles back together again, it was done with internal absorbing sutures on the inside, and on the outside, Super Glue.

Just think where the world would be today, should Humpty Dumpty have had Super Glue available back in the day.

Stay safe in Afghanistan.

From the EastWing, A Starfish Saved, PPR Not Coming To Town, Surgery On The Girl Dogs, Humpty Dumpty& Super Glue

I Wish You Well,


From the EastWing, Cooler Nights & Finding Money In Pockets, Comets Coming Our Way, Irena Sendler, The Noble Peace Prize & Jokers Wild.

Greeting to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

As cooler days and even cooler nights squeeze out all the warmth of left over summer, seasonal changes always bring surprises. Have you ever put on a jacket or any other garment containing pockets, and found much to your surprise, MONEY in the pocket? I love when that happens. Just the other day, an old pair of sweat pants I just wear around the house,  and had not worn those pants for six months or so.

Four dollars, all folded nice and neat. Really clean, you could tell it had been thru the wash, at least once, maybe twice. Now the amount of money is secondary to the fact, ya get some free money. It just makes you feel happy. That unexpected money in your pocket is like winning the lottery without buying a ticket.

As the last quarter of the year kicks in, so is the demand to put up or shut up about the big sky event I talked about back when the springtime was only a hope for the future. The plan was to talk about this thing in the sky come November. But one of the great things about stargazing, ya never know what the next dark night sky will bring.

On September 9th in the Australian night sky, Terry Lovejoy saw a brand new comet. Saw it again the next night, and the next night.  By now he knows he’s got something, so he tells other people where to look. And sure enough, a new comet is identified.

Now this new comet was not what I was talking about when I said we’d have a night light show from the Gods. I was thinking about Comet Ison.  Actually Comet Ison is in the night sky right now, just too weak to see without a telescope. From here on out the Comet Ison will only get brighter.

Now that is assuming Comet Ison does survive its swing around the sun. Remember Apollo 13, when the bone chilling message came from space “Houston, we have a problem”, Remember that? It still gives me chills every time I hear it spoken, even though I know the happy ending of the story. In order to return to Earth Apollo 13 had to go around the moon to gain speed for the return trip home.

Comet Ison is now on a trip around the sun much like Apollo 13 went around the moon. But Comet Ison will not come toward Earth. It’s a trip into deep space for the comet. And it’s after the trip around the other side of the sun that Comet Ison will then light up the night sky. That is assuming the comet survives the trip.

The magnetic pull of the sun is millions times more powerful than the magnetic pull of the moon. And keep in mind the magnetic pull of the moon is what makes the oceans rise and fall. It’s the tide thing, twice a day, that magnetic pull of the moon.

Comets, unlike asteroids are not solid chunks of iron and rock. They are made up of ice and dust and star stuff. Comet Ison is about 4 miles wide of ice and space dirt. Some think the magnetic pull of the sun will cause Comet Ison to explode much the same way heat causes the popcorn to pop. Should Comet Ison pop, the night sky stays dark. If not, a light show from the star stuff crated at the beginning of Genesis . I’m hoping for not popping.

Assuming that sun trip goes ok, then come November nights both the Comet Ison and Lovejoy will be in the same night sky. Comet Lovejoy is not expected to ever by bright enough to see without the telescope. Not the case with Comet Ison, it will either be there for the whole world to see or not. We’ll see. Or maybe we won’t see. We’ll see.

Did you ever hear of Irena Sendler? Most people have not heard of her. She died with hardly a notice on May 12, 2008 in Warsaw, Poland at age 98.  It was during WWII that Irena, applied for and received permission to work in the Warsaw ghetto, as a Plumbing Sewer Specialist. She had a secret inspiration for the job. Irena smuggled Jewish babies out in the bottom of the tool box she carried. She also carried a burlap sack in the back of her truck, for larger kids.

Irena kept a dog in the back of the truck that she’d trained to bark when the Nazi soldiers let her in and out of the ghetto.  The soldiers, for sure, wanted nothing to do with the dog and the barking covered the noise made by the babies. During her time of doing this, she managed to smuggle out and save 2500 babies. Ultimately, she was caught, and the Nazi’s broke both of her legs and arms and beat her severely. Even with that, she was lucky to be left alive.

Irena kept a record of the names of all the kids she had smuggled out,  Buried those names in a glass jar under a tree in her back yard. After the war, she tried to locate any parents that may have survived and tried to reunite the families. Most parents did not survive. Those kids, whose lives she saved got placed into foster family homes or adopted.

In 2007 Irena Sendler was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. She was not selected. In 2007 Al Gore got the Nobel Peace Prize, for a slide show on Global Warming. I’m sure you’ve heard of Al Gore. A few years after that, another American Politician also received the Noble Peace Prize. Barack Obama, I’m sure you’ve heard of him also.

Al Gore’s contribution to society, that got him awarded the Noble Peace Prize in 2007, can be summed up pretty much by the  September 20, 2013 report on Global Warming. That published report stated the vast majority  of the research and reporting on Global Warming has been falsified and misreported to the benefit of those who spread fear of the unknown in our society. Those such as Al Gore, who has benefited greatly from such fear mongering. Also including in the fear mongering are those who ensure their future employment in the study of Global Warming by making certain the future of Global Warming is indeed dreary and must be continually monitored.  

Barack Obama’s contribution to society for which he was awarded the Noble Peace Prize was recently demonstrated when  he requested the United States Congress authorize a war on Syria in order to save face for stupid remarks he made in public. Then we, the people, made our voices heard. WE SAID NO!

The next time you hear of the Noble Peace Prize, just remember how unimportant it really is when the likes of Al Gore and Barack Obama are awarded the prize for their contributions to humanity. All the while  Irena Sendler is passed over for the prize….. Then ask yourself who has really contributed to humanity.

Stay safe in Afghanistan.

From the EastWing, Cooler Nights & Finding Money In Pockets, Comets Coming Our Way, Irena Sendler, The Noble Peace Prize & Jokers Wild.

I Wish You Well,


Nashville Bound, Working Away From Home, Playing Away From Home, 30 ABES, A Record Made, BUBS BBQ & The Englishman Taking Home The Makins

Greetings to all and welcome new friends to the EastWing.

Right now it’s Wednesday September 25th , the mobile EastWing is south bound and down, loaded up and trucking, we’re gona do what they say can’t be done……. And so my #1 son, RJ, and I rolled onto that  asphalt concrete ribbon of steel, the thing they call the interstate. While I pray I65  take me home to the southland.

We’re going to Nashville, Tennessee me and Bub, cause RJ’s involved with a nonprofit cause that provides prepackaged meals to Haiti. The organization is called “30 ABES” . Which stand for .30¢, that’s the cost of one meal to feed a hungry child in Haiti. Sad to say, but much of the world seems to have turned its attention away from  Haiti after the shock of the earthquake wore off. 30ABES has not forgotten.

30 ABES is promoting the cause by trying to package 500,000 meals within 60 minutes. Yep, I’m telling ya, packaging a half million in 60 minutes.  Both me and the She, RJ & Heather, we’re all gona be worker bees in that effort to package a half million meals  in one hour. We’ll see.

As RJ and I pass through the Indiana corn fields I can’t help but marvel at the differenced a year makes in Indiana. It was just a year ago when my dear Sister Barbara was in the process of her final illness in Roswell GA my Sister Sharolette and I ran up and down this I65 five times in 6 weeks. The Indiana farm crops were a disaster on the vine. Corn fields that never grew beyond knee high, soybeans that never got 6 inches above the ground. 2012 was  tuff crop year for the Indiana Farmer. The difference a year makes. WOW! If not a record crop in 2013, it’ll be close to the record. Like it’s always been, and  forever will be, just when you think you know it all, God takes over and the weather controls the future.

The Indiana wind farms fly be my window as I sit on the right side rolling on down highway 65.  The giant windmills stretching from west of I65 all the way to Reynolds, IN  some 40 miles or so to the east, and 10 to 12 miles wide, north to south . I’ve never heard of the number of the windmills in this location. But they’re  a lot of windmills in that farm, a lot.

And interesting side fact on the wind farms in our nation. The current administration in Washington D.C. is pushing wind energy to the fullest extent possible. Having pretty much lost public support for solar energy due to the Solyndra disaster. So the administration is now blowing in the wind. A little publicized  fact is, these massive windmills have killed more endangered species of birds in the last 5 years than mankind has destroyed since 1980.

The EPA and all other Federal Agencies  have been instructed to stop tracking the Bald Eagles killed by wind turbines, and so they have. It’s interesting to note that a private citizen who kills a Bald Eagle is subject to a $250,00.00 fine and 10 years in prison.  A Federally favored business that enjoys both State and Federal tax credits along with other benefits, who kills a Bald Eagles, well those Bald Eagles, don’t count anymore. Just think about that for a little bit. That’s all from an administration who anticipated “A level playing field” along with “Complete Transparency” in government. In fact, stated publicly they would be the most transparent administration in the history of the nation.

Saw an interesting sign along the way. It was a group in Indians on setting on horseback. The caption read “Give us your guns. They said. We will protect you. They said.”   Guess that federal transparency and complete honesty doesn’t extend to things with feathers. Things like Bald eagles and Indians.

As northern Indiana turns into central Indiana, and the windmills disappear from the right side  rear view mirror, it’s kinda fun to think that we’ll see both Indianapolis, Louisville and Nashville TN before the sun goes down. But before Louisville can be seen above the horizon, lunch time comes around and on the road again, that means Cracker Barrel when it comes to BobbyRay and lunch time.

It was maybe 30 minutes after lunch at the Cracker Barrel that I decided to set up the office computer and go to work for the day. If you’ve ever experienced the feeling of when you push the ON button of your computer and it don’t turn on, only you can know what I’m talking about. If you have not, you don’t know, so don’t even try to imagine. It is not a happy feeling when the computer don’t roll.

Three hundred miles to wonder what’s wrong. Is it mechanical? Is it software? Can I address the issue when I get to Tennessee? What if I can’t? It was at that point I pushed the dark side back into the shadows from whence it came, and decided yes I can.  Within minutes of stepping  into my hotel room, the laptop was up and running with Spike The Man Cat looking back at me from the background of the desktop.

Thursday morning RHCO INC opened for business as usual, just an hour late and 500 miles south. As RJ prepared to cook several hundred lbs of pork donated by the SISCO FOODS, I prepared to do boring   data entry for the next several hours. Don’t know why but the time flew by that morning and it seemed that within a flash the data entry had been posted. Two income tax returns had been completed and filed with the Internal Revenue Service.

The year was 1990 and IRS was looking for tax return preparers who owned computers and were willing to participate in a pilot program of filing income tax returns by computer.  I signed up. It took 30 minutes of long distance telephone time, at my cost,  to transmit one tax return. In order to continue in the pilot program for the following year I had to agree to transmit a minimum of 10 tax returns. I agreed.

As I closed  my Tennessee RHCO for the day I’d worked the day on a laptop computer many thousands times more powerful than the 1990 computer first used for IRS tax filings. And that extra cost to transmit those two tax returns. No extra cost. Time to do so, 10 – 12 seconds at the most. All day I worked on the laptop and a secured wireless internet connection that not only made the IRS available but also provide many millions of other sites on the internet.

Shortly before dark, the She was also in Tennessee. The She and Heather having arrived just after 7 PM. My world is always better when me and the She are in the same state. Even more better when in the same house. And so it was, Thursday night that me and the She  were once again in the same house. I sleep better that way.

Friday we played in the Tennessee sunshine, while RJ cooked the meat for BUBS BBQ to feed the worker being trained for tomorrow’s 30 ABS attempt to set a world record of 500,000 meals packed in one hour. Friday Morning looking for a place to eat breakfast, we almost went, but did not go, to a place called The Puffy Muffin. Should have done so, ‘cause now I’ll spend the rest of my life wondering  was it Puffy Good or Puffy Bad. Next trip thru Tennessee, we’ll find out. We did find a cup cake store to die for.

The sun had not even thought about rising above the Smokey Mountains when the She is yelling for me to get up and get ready, ‘cause we’re leaving no later than 6 O’clock. We were unpacked and inside the Nashville Municipal Auditorium  before much of Nashville decided to wake up for the day. It was not yet 7 o’clock when RJ & Heather decided to go outside the Auditorium and find something for breakfast.

While waiting for the breakfast delivery, me and the She walked around the concourse inside the Nashville Municipal Auditorium.  The walls were decorated with large (4’x8’) reproductions of actual tickets for shows at the auditorium.  Elvis, July 1 1972, the ticket cost $9.00. Prince August 18, 2000, the ticket cost $65.00. I know who Elvis was. I never heard of a person called Prince. I’m sure some must have. Those willing to pay $65.00 back in the year 2000, well they could see him live.

Well over 2,000 people from all over the country came to participate in the event. An official from the Genies Book of World Records was on hand to officially record and attest to the results of the effort. Win lose or draw, the effort would be recorded by the man from London, England with the funny accent. It was gratifying  to think my son had chosen to  support the effort to feed the hungry children of Haiti by bringing BUBS BBQ all the way to Nashville TN to serve two meals on two different days to some 200 people each day. RJ  asked me and the She to come along. We went along, not for the ride but to be a worker bee.

The auditorium floor had been set up into workstations to accommodate 30 workers per station. The food to be packaged (all dried ingredients) was stacked as close to the workstations as possible. Cardboard boxes were assembled and stacked well over head high all over the place.

Each workstation had a person in charge who’s responsibility it was to within  one hour assign us worker bees jobs and train us in the ways of assembling a half million meals in one hour. Not an easy task considering,  I’m sure, most of us had never assembled much more than a single bologna sandwich in one hour. But we learned quick.

54 meals per plastic bag. 4 bags per box. The process was straight forward. 4 people scooping rice, soy protein, and dehydrated pinto beans into  a stationary funnel. 2 people hold the plastic bag. When all the scoops have been made the bags are handed off. 2 people weigh the bags 3,500 to 3,518 grams. Weight is adjusted up or down by the use of rice. 2 sealers are charged with removing the air from the plastic bag and placing the end inside the electric sealing machine. 2 people push down the heating arm of the sealing machine and count to eight. 2 people load and tape the cases.

In less than an hour, the people in charge felt the worker bee training was sufficient to go for the gold. But in order to start the record breaking attempt it was necessary to first obtain the consent to start early as the attempt to break the record had officially been set to start at 10:00 AM. And here it was only 9:40 AM. When the official observer of the record attempt, that guy from England, the one that talked funny, thought starting a few minutes early would be fine.

When the countdown reached  zero and the air  filled with upbeat country pop music, 4 hands dumped into the funnel. 2 hands held the plastic bag. 1 weighed the bag. 2 sealed the bag. 1 placed the bag in the bottom of the case. And just that quick our team completed the first 54 meals of our goal of 500,000. Now if the rest of the house can keep with us we’ll be taking  home the record.

Like every team effort, moving at the speed of the slowest member, maximum effort was exerted by those assembled inside the Nashville Municipal Auditorium. Over 2,000 pretty much strangers pulling together for a common goal. The goal being packing 500,000 meals in one hour for the orphans of Haiti.

39 minutes into the challenge our team ran out of the dehydrated pinto beans. Our production stopped. Try as they might none of our team could locate any extra pinto beans to continue our production line. Our team contribution to the effort had ended. Within minutes all other workstations were also running out of pinto beans. The total effort had been put forth. The only thing left was the final count, and either the shouting or groining, we’ll see.

The Guinness Book of World Records observer was introduced to give the final count. He provided us with the technical stuff, pounds of food, converted to kilograms, and stuff like that. The distance to Haiti from Nashville TN. The fact that we did not use the whole hour.  And then he said Ladies and Gentlemen a new world record has been established at 530,064 meals packaged in one hour. We yelled, we clapped, we hugged both friends and strangers, we cried and laughed.  Orphan babies we didn’t even know, could now eat a little better because of our efforts.

It was after the record setting event that BUBS BBQ served the final meal in Nashville. The final taste of BUBS BBQ went not to the ones who pulled such an event together, as they had their taste of BUBS the night before. This final group that got the taste of BUBS BBQ in Nashville was the crew charged with the daunting task of cleaning up the house, and a messy house it was.

RJ did have one special guest of the final BUBS BBQ in Nashville, the  guy representing the Guinness  Book of World Records. He and Bub hit it off right up. RJ  gave him a BUBS BBQ Cap. He loved the BBQ, said it was the best he ever had. The She made the Guinness Book of World Records guy two BUBS BBQ Sandwiches to go. Said he was flying out of Nashville that afternoon. I’m still wondering if the aluminum wrapped BUBS BBQ Sandwiches set off the airport security system. If so he could have just showed ‘’em the hat.

Stay safe in Afghanistan.

From The EastWing, Nashville Bound, Working Away From Home, Playing Away From Home, 30 ABES, A Record Made, BUBS BBQ & The Englishman Taking Home The Makins

I Wish You Well.