Monday, January 26, 2015


Smokey the Bear used to say forrest fires instead of wildfires.
Don't know why the change was made, possibly even Smokey is subject to the P.C. Police.
You think about someone throwing a cigarette out the window of a passing car, how simple and easy it would be for someone walking to just step on the butt to extinguish the flame.
How if there is no one around to save the day, that same small flame will grow into an incredibly destructive force and require vast resources and many times, loss of life to vanquish it.
The United States is the focal point for enormous ridicule and derision from most of the planet it seems.
Often referred as The World Police, meant not as a compliment for sure.
Starting with the Korean War, then Vietnam, the Israeli/Islamic strife to the current run of Islamic aggression against its neighbors and human beings from other cultures.

The leftists in this country blame their own nation, saying we have a bloodlust, we are warmongers, Dick Cheney wants Halliburton to make him more money or President Bush wants more oil money.
"No blood for oil" is the mantra of the Idiocrats.
Don't bother to Google that word, I just made it up.
Defined in your volume of the Venster dictionary 2015 edition as follows:
Idiocrat derivative of idiot. "One who ignores fact or reason and will never let logic, truth or common sense get in the way of attacking someone who uses facts, reason, logic, truth and common sense while protecting liberty, democracy, capitalism, freedom, and free thought."

The thing the detractors of the defensive posture taken by the U.S. forget is the terrible price the has been paid in the past when someone walked by a smoldering cigarette and just stepped over it. It was easier to just ignore the small ember. Surely it will go out on its own. If not then someone else will surely stomp out the glowing flame.
Turns out everybody just kept stepping over it, then it got bigger and they walked around it. It went from ominous threat to a raging inferno. The time for stomping the burning ember passed and by the time we joined in the fight Hitler was dominating on three fronts.
We paid a terrible price for the neglect of others.
The world except for the Axis Powers weren't bitching back then about our involvement in the affairs of others.
World War I and World War II polarized our foreign policy, by the 1950's the Third Reich was dead but Communism went from carcinoma to an aggressive malignant tumor.
Our involvement in Korea then in Vietnam began to wear on people and they gradually forgot about the importance of stepping on small embers.
Our vigilance turned into complacency until that day I took my mother to the airport on 9/11.
We snapped out of our coma that day and soon we started kicking the living shit out of these Disciples from hell.
But when politicians prosecute wars and seek to win the hearts and minds of a people that posses neither, you end of with a war of attrition.
Our patience for the "a" word is variable.
It doesn't help when the left side of the nation wants the security they enjoy, they also want to be a dead weight on the process required to accomplish it.

Comes now ISIS, or ISIL, or whatever you chose to call this growing network of evil baby raping murderers.
Obamas fumbling Mideast policies created this vacuum and nature as well as evil abhors a vacuum.
ISIS is filling it with increasing numbers of evil Islamic lunatics who worship a man they call a Prophet. I have other names for a murderer and child molester. I guess there is two of them to start with.
The horrific thing and the difference in the threat posed by ISIS and Nazi Germany, the Japanese Empire or even the dead Soviet Union is the latter three understood and respected the doctrine of M.A.D. (Mutually Assured Destruction), (I know, M.A.D wasn't in vogue during WW II).
The radical Islamics not only do not fear mutual destruction, they embrace it.
They believe it is their destiny to bring about what the Christian world calls The Apocalypse.
They are doing the bidding of the Anti-Christ.
Soon thanks to Russia, China, North Korea and Iran the Nuclear Genie will be out of the bottle. Once these Islamic lunatics get their hands on a nuke it will only be a matter of time before they use it. If Pakistan falls to the radical elements in that country the radicals will instantly have their fingers on the button.
It's inevitable that either one or both of these things will happen in our lifetime unless you plan on checking out in the next few years.
Am I trying to sound ominous? Not really, I just lose my patience when the sky is falling loons bend science and distort evidence trying to redistribute Americas wealth making fanciful man-made C.O. Global Warming claims when Global Warming will more likely happen with the push of a button.

There are fires all over the globe now ranging from smoldering embers to growing flames. The rest of the planet is either walking around these fires or critiquing the ones trying to put them out.
It's almost too late now.

Proofing this post made me almost hit the delete button. I wrote it with good intentions but it came off as overblown and mellow dramatic.
Then yesterday I read this article.
Then last night I was in some unknown city with my daughter I looked off in the distance and saw a large nuclear explosion, I grabbed my daughter we ducked and covered behind a large tree and waited for the shockwave.
It hit and all around us buildings were leveled but the tree and me and Nicole were spared.
Then we started gathering supplies and I was trying to figure out how we could get to my fishing shack at the lake. 
Then I woke up back here in Fort Myers and thought what the hell, I'm posting this load of digital crap!

Saturday, January 24, 2015


for some reason I cant find this old post in the edit file. but was able to do a search on it so I will link to it so go here if you want a laugh at my expense.


Friday, January 23, 2015


He Said, She Said, Ed Said

always wondered what I would do in the face of real danger. I never had to experience combat. I enlisted in the Army National Guard in 73 just after the draft had ended.
Can't say I had some high altruistic motive for doing so. It was more to do with my undiagnosed ADD boredom, looking for something different to do with my rudderless life.

I made it through Army basic training just fine in fact near top of the class in all but one area.
The ability to take shit from someone else. You see back then I had a real problem with authority. Yeah not exactly a virtue in the military.

Flash forward some 40 plus years, I have some regrets about that. I admire those who serve our country in the military and regret I was not a different person back then.
Watching a movie such as American Sniper always has me reevaluating myself in Army Basic Training.

I don't flatter myself thinking I could have even qualified for SEAL training much less earn a Trident. 
Basic training was tough enough for me. When I learned what BUDS training consisted of, I was in awe of anyone who could make it through that hell.
These guys who earn that title even if they never have to do one actual combat mission deserve accolades.
Then you think about those guys who make the grade then get deployed and do a tour in country, then do two tours, then do three tours, then do four tours.
But that man who joins the military, applies for SEAL training, then is one of the few that actually graduates BUDS, then is deployed 1,2,3,4 times. Holds the record as America's deadliest sniper in U.S. history. Comes home, devotes his life to helping other vets who are disabled and has his life taken by some returning vet. This is the guy the Hollywood elitists want to call a coward.

What am I missing? Is Michael Moore qualified to make judgments on an American hero because he makes fake documentaries trashing the U.S. and can devour a whole can of Crisco at one setting? Is Seth Rogan qualified to make judgments on an American hero because he can smoke a whole pound of weed while he jokes about how many times he whacks off each day?
Ok, I got that out, I was supposed to blog about the content of the movie American Sniper.

I have to admit Bradley Cooper is one of my favorite actors. Not because I look just like him (I wish), I just think he can play any role convincingly, he even does well in comedic roles. And Clint Eastwood is a proven quality as an actor as well as director.
Watching this movie or any combat movie more often than not leads me down memory lane to my own lackluster military career. And always has me wondering if I would have had the right stuff in the heat of battle.
I can't usually remember what happened last week, but I will never forget the time in basic training when the enemy of one of our fight songs led by the DI's was switched overnight. It went from,,
"I want to be an Airborne Ranger, I want to live a life of danger, I want to go to Vietnam, I want to kill some commie congs". You see, almost all of our Drill Instructors were fresh back from country. Vietnam was still their enemy.
Then suddenly overnight, the song was changed, not the tune, just the enemy. That next morning as per usual we started our morning run around the Parade Grounds while singing war songs.
"I want to be an Airborne Ranger, I want to live a life of danger, I want to go to Israel, I want to kill some Egyptians".
Yeah overnight.

This was1973, the Yom Kippur War pitted Israel against an Egyptian/Syrian alliance when the Muslims launched a surprise attack against the Jews on the Jewish Holy Day of Yom Kippur.
In basic training you get news not from the network TV, but by word of mouth so reliability sometimes suffers. I had not been training that day, I was stuck on KP duty which was worse then crawling through mud while a D.I. was kicking you in the ass.
My buddies came through the chow line with wide eyes exclaiming "man were going to war!, they put some infantry units on ready alert and us Nation Guard guys are getting 6 additional weeks of combat training and then we're going to be sent over to the Mideast!"
It was the next day when I went back to training that the war song was changed to killing Egyptians.
The day after that one of the guys in our BTC decided he would bug out. He had joined the 82 Airborne unit. An Airborne infantry unit, a unit you join expecting to someday go into combat with. That day he just refused to train, he stood against the barracks wall and threatened to hit anyone who came near him.
Why would you join a damn infantry unit then bug out if you thought you would have to fight.
Ahhhh the Phony tough! 
That line is from one of my favorite movies, "Full Metal Jacket". The narrator talks about the phony tough and the crazy brave.

What was I thinking during this time? I had lived my young life being both phony tough and crazy brave at times up until this point. Funny thing was, I wasn't really terrorfied at the possibility of going to war, it was unexpected for sure, I thought I was there to learn how to operate bulldozers. I had joined an Army National Guard Engineering unit. Now I was going to have to go through infantry training then go on the other side of the planet and kill Egyptians.
I hadn't planned on killing Islamics, but I was the one who signed on the line, I wasn't going to bug out.

Yeah I know the point of this "he said, she said, Ed said" was to give my take on the movie American Sniper. But when I'm watching a really great film I get inside the movie and I wonder things like what would I do? How would I handle that situation?
Movies I've seen about combat always take me back 40 years ago to BTC in Fort Leonard Wood Missouri and I remember how tough I thought Basic was at the time.
Uhhhh, I keep getting off track here, chasing rabbits as a former pastor said. I'm supposed to be reviewing a movie here.
American Sniper had me cursing under my breath the Islamic terrorists and cheering when Chris Kyle blew one of the scumbags heads off. The end of the movie had the entire audience in silence and we ushered ourselves out of the theatre as if it had been transformed into a funeral home.

American Sniper is an amazing movie, I would not expect it to garner many awards though. It will not be politically correct to do so. Hollywood is replete with the phony tough. 
Michele (sic) Moore has made a good living utilizing freedoms fought for by others.
His hack so-called documentaries would not be possible in most other places. This talentless Crisco Kid has found his niche, tearing down the very nation that he uses for his own personal gain. And he calls the likes of Chris Kyle a coward?

Back to Fort Leonard Wood 40 years ago.
Turns out Israel had no need for either the phony tough or the crazy brave. They kicked the living shit out of the Islamics just like they did in 67.
I was a relief to all of us of course, as for the phony tough, the 82nd Airborne guy that wanted to bug out when he thought he might actually have to go into combat and who before that spent all his spare time telling everybody how badassed he was, got handed a DD and was sent packing. I went on after Basic Training to A.I.T. and played in the mud of Fort Leonard Wood on a D7 Cat bulldozer for a couple months. Never got tested on the battlefield, had to settle for a few barroom brawls instead.

But it always left me wondering, when I think about the ones who have been tested, like the guy in the movie I sat and watched today, or the guy who sat on the other side of my sister who was tested in Vietnam. I wonder if I would have measured up. Not a war hero, just a soldier who could one day say I did my best.

To read She Said go here.

Friday, January 16, 2015


Just spent the last few days in Key West, now my little mini vacation is over and I have to drive back up north.
All the way to fricking Fort Myers Florida.
Got to Florida 3 weeks ago today, the weather has been wonderful. Certainly nothing to bitch about there. The first five days I got down here I had respiratory infection. That's the first time I have been ill in about 4 or 5 years and the memory of chest colds fade rapidly once you are well.
Oh! I took one of the volunteer camps kayaks down the Estero River the other day that is right next to where I am camped and when I was launching it I got a splinter in my finger from the dock and it really smarted, hmmm.
Ok I guess I need to turn my attention further north for bitching inspiration.

The Bozo in the White House keeps releasing more terrorist from Gitmo so they can resume murdering the normal people of planet Earth.

The idiot "pants up don't loot" vermin are dipping their soft non-calloused hands together in concrete filled barrels and blocking the interstates in Boson and nobody thought to reenact the Boston Tea Party with their dumasses and dump them in the bay.

Al Sharlaton is at it again whining that the elite Hollywood leftist only nominated the movie Selma for 2 Academy Awards.

The Bozo in the White House is threatening to block the will of the people again by blocking the Keystone Pipeline while pissing on the Constitution with his Executive Actions on everything else.

Yeah that ought to do it.

Thursday, January 8, 2015


wouldn't say I've been humbled.
After all that would mean it was something I had not expected.
It would also require another person that was trying to humble me.
I left Brown County State Park Christmas Eve with the gratitude and respect for the work I did there for the last seven months. I had become one of the main go to guys there and the Park Manager, Assistant Manager and Maintenance Supervision doled out pats on my back on a regular basis. Sounds like I'm patting myself on the back here.
Don't mean to, it's an attempt to make a larger point. That point being my ego was receiving a proper balance of nutrition.
This park in Florida, Koreshan State Historical Site has been the prize I've had my eye on since I visited my cousin here last February. My cousin was a tour guide here and he gave me a personal tour of the Settlement. The entire park and Settlement was fascinating but it was when we got to the antique machine shops and the turn of the century electrical power house, my eyes lit up with all the voltage the antique Nikola Tesla designed Westinghouse alternator could generate.
I have always had an affinity for cogs and wheels and pulleys and rotors and stators and pistons and electricity and early technology.
And here it all was, in one small area of the park, a dim, ancient looking, hand blown bulb appeared above my head. This is where I wanted to spend the rest of my winters.

I came to Florida that warm humid February (at least down here) without a clue of where I was going to live. I had been staying with my brother for well over a year since my last and final divorce and I knew it was way past time to give him his home and privacy back.
I had been looking for an apartment close to or in Nashville Indiana. Close to my lake lot and fishin shack, close to the park I love so much Brown County State Park.

15,000 acres of beautiful rolling hills and vistas, mountain biking, hiking and horseback riding trails aplenty.
I had put in my name on a waiting list at a Senior Living apartment in Nashville months before. I never heard back from them so I figured being such a nice place to live, the residents there would probably hang on to those apartments like grim death!

My cousin had been coming this park in Florida for the winter for several years, volunteering at the park, in return he and the other volunteers got to camp for free for 20 hours of work a week.
Sounded like a perfect solution to me!
When I got back home I made several efforts to do the same at the park at Nashville.
Finally got my gig going there and loved the 7 months I spent there.
Christmas Eve would find my hitching my wagon and heading south to my new home in Florida for the next 3 plus months.
I wasn't exactly sure what I would be doing here, I told the Volunteer Coordinator I wasn't above picking up trash or cleaning toilets.
The real gig I wanted was in the Industrial Area of the park, where the gear and motor heads run and demonstrate all the gadgets and cogs and wheels, and monster engines of days gone bye.
That would have to be a job I would have to wait for I was told.
The guys who have that job loved what they were doing and would hang on to that gig like grim death!
Sure, who would blame them? I would go there and do what was required of me and put my name on another waiting list for that job. Another waiting list that I would probably never hear back from.

The day after Christmas I pulled my camper in the Volunteer Camp. My cousin had gone back up to Indy for the holidays and was not back yet.
The other volunteers at the camp were very welcoming and helpful when they learned who I was. Apparently my cousin has a lot of juice here!
One of the men helping me get set up here was also the guy who runs the Industrial Area.
Real great guy as is all the other people here. Most people are nice here in the tropics, it's hard to be an asshole in this weather!

It took several days to be able to find out what I was supposed to do so I just hung out with the Industrial guys. Learning what I could, helping when I could, trying not to get in the way, trying not to shoot my mouth off all the while trying to showcase some semblance of talent in this arena. I learned they were a guy short! The big guy of the Industrial Area put in a good word for me and that did the trick! I got my dream job in the Industrial Area down here right off the bat, but I understood going in I was no longer the go-to guy, I had to check my inflated ego at the Florida Welcome Center.
Like the good Lord says, "humble thyself and pray". I would add humble thyself and learn.
These guys make that very easy to do.

I prayed all the way from Nashville Indiana that I wouldn't flip my camper and contents upside down in a ditch on the way down here. I humbled myself gladly and switched my brain into the sponge mode. You have to know when it's time to shut the hell up and listen to the wisdom around you. There is plenty of that around here. There are a variety of very sharp old guys that are very good at what they do and very good about sharing the knowledge they have acquired over a lifetime of turning wrenches, turning lathes, running wires, building cabinets, writing books, just about anything you can think of this group of volunteers has a pool of talent that I hope to draw from. 
This job consists of repairing and rebuilding an antique power station, machine shops, monster crude oil burning engines, gas engines and firing them up for demonstration.
The most important aspect of this gig is to be on hand when people stroll in and just shoot the bull with them, show them the large and small machine shops and the power house and explain the history of the park and how everything works.
I haven't been assigned shifts for giving tours yet, but I have already started doing it.
I really love getting my hands greasy around here and I really enjoy talking to people about it. 

As I said, well over a year ago I had put my name on a waiting list for a nice apartment in Nashville.
Funny, yesterday in the old power house as I was being mentored by the Obi-Wan Kenobi of the Industrial Area, I got a call from the apartment complex telling me they finally had a place for me now, "no thanks", I said, "I've already found a home".

Monday, January 5, 2015


This is what I was hoping for. To hell with tourist traps, I want to explore the real South Florida. 

I've been here a little over a week now. Pretty much settled in now, can't say I have been worth my salt as of yet. I keep asking what they want me to do, they keep saying just settle in, enjoy and we will put you to work soon enough. So be it.

That's what sprung me loose on this first of what I hope to be many recon missions of South Florida. I've fantasized about doing this for decades. Pretty much started thinking about it since the collapse of my second marriage. I should have done it then, it would have saved me wasting 10 years on a third loser marriage.

Since I have been still occupied getting my camper set up on the new site I didn't have a full day to explore so I set my sights on riding my Honda Shadow to Immokalee by way of Corkscrew Road.

After 13 miles of riding the flattest, straightest and open road I was wondering where the hell it got its name.

The home version of this is what we back home called The Samaria Flats.

This was The Flats times 10! Somewhere along this stretch I passed a little metal shack of a building t-boned into an old beat up camper as to make living quarters.

The front part of the shack had a sign that advertised "Corkscrew Country Store".

Note to self, gotta stop here on my way back from Immokalee.

About then Corkscrew Road was starting to live up to its namesake with some with some sexy long smooth bike loving 90 degree turns. The kind that you don't have to be a Cafe racer to lay into and enjoy.

You just get a nice lean into the corner and with perfect visibility and no opposing traffic you let the throttle dictate what position of the road you take. Centrifugal force at its best.   Corkscrew Road is the exit I took off of I75 the day after Christmas. It led me directly to the park that will be home to me and my Toy Hauler camper for the winter.

Leaving the park heading east on Corkscrew this very warm, humid January day, the mass of restaurants, condo developments and numerous Publix grocery stores give way to citrus groves, marshes, panther warning signs and open roads.

After a few nice long curves and passing some hiking preserves that will need hiking in the near future Corkscrew Road tees into State Road 82 that will head me toward Immakolee.

The main industry of Immakolee is the Seminole ran casino. I don't care much for casinos but only thought it fair to drop in and pay reparations to my Native American brethren.

Took me a grant total of about 10 minutes and were all good now. Squared up. Your welcome Kimosabe.

Heading back on this short 70 mile test run I saw a sign in Immokalee on S.R. 29 that said Everglade City 47 miles. That would be due south of Immokalee and that was what I was looking for. A route to Everglade City that kept me off of interstates or the stretch of Tamiami Trail that drudges through heavy traffic and monotonous planned communities.

It will take me longer to get there for sure but I'm more interested in exploring the real South Florida than making good time to each place I intend to visit.

Heading back across Corkscrew Road I kept my eyes peeled for the Country Store.

When I came up to the gravel drive to the stores parking lot there on a trailer was the craziest coolest homemade swamp buggy rig I ever saw.

I pulled up to the front of the shambled store and saw a few locals sitting on the stores porch.

"How y'all doin?" I spoke in my best Southern Indiana drawl.

"Good, how you?" they responded.

"I'm good" I said. "Just a bit parched, ya don't happen to have any cold beer in there for sale do ya?"

"Yeah, I got a little bit" she said and led me inside to an old fashion style coke bottle cooler.

Inside was an ecletic collection of beer. No Coors Banquet to be found but there were a couple of Carona's of all things so I settled on one of those sans lime wedge.

I'm sure fruiting the beer in this place would have been an egregious error of protocol.

I sat down with my thirst quenching beer a couple of seats down from ol boy who I was sure to be the craftsman of this mutation of motor city.

Ol' boy was more than happy to talk about his swamp conquering machine when I asked about it. I sat on the porch with ol boy and the others had a good conversation about much of nothing. The proprietor of the store had migrated down south from Ohio some thirty five years ago. She had run the store for the last twenty.

Seems like in Fort Myers you can't throw a rock without hitting a Publix store.

I kinda of like this store better.

After a half an hour my limeless Carona drained, it was time to head back to my home on wheels. I told them I'd see em again. This store is right on my way to a lot of other places I need to see.

As I was heading back across Corkscrew Flats I recalled the decisions I had to make when the idea of becoming a park volunteer carney first started taking shape.

I had serious thoughts about taking my brother up on his offer to buy my bike and just get a standard travel trailer instead of a toy hauler.

I finally came to the decision to sacrifice comfort space for cargo space and found a camper that offered both.

Some toy haulers have dedicated garages in the back. I didn't like that configuration. I wanted a camper that would allow the cargo area to be used as practical living space when not hauling my toys. Finally found the perfect fit, a 2014 Grey Wolf 25RR.

With my rental house sold this is going to be my primary home for as long as I can sing for my supper and live this vagabond lifestyle.

The low gas prices hit at the perfect time and with trailer in tow dragging my MPG down to a little over 8 miles it's a damn good thing.

Saw we are having a cold front coming through later this week, gonna drop down to 50 as a low Thursday night. Course it's supposed to be 2 below back home.

See ya in the spring back home folks!