Archive for December, 2012

End Of The Year Thoughts, 2012

December 31, 2012

Well . . . the world as a whole survived, in the process marking the official point that I am no longer counting how many so-called “coming apocalypses” I’ve lived through.

Sure hope my luck holds on that.

Yeah, Yeah

December 28, 2012

So I took some friendly flak for the . . . brevity . . . of my post yesterday.

In my defense, yesterday I found myself almost completely out of time for any kind of post due to normal holiday stuff, and when I finally sat down to write something I found myself thinking, “I’d better clarify that nothing too dire has gone wrong with the house hunt, or somebody is going to assume either fire or pregnancy.”

By The Way . . .

December 27, 2012

It really wasn’t that bad.

“How’s The House Hunt Going?” You Ask.

December 26, 2012

The longer this goes on, the more frequently and fervently I find myself asking the question, “How does anything ever get done under this system?”

That’s how it’s going.

(It may not actually be that bad . . . in fact, it’s even probably not that bad, but the latest round has pushed me to the point that I can’t really tell anymore.  This shall pass, but that’s where I’m at right at this moment.)

Warm Thoughts For The Season

December 25, 2012

Mom is visiting us this season, but given the chaos/space shortage in the house at the moment, she’s staying in a hotel.

When checking in to said hotel, the desk clerk gave her a big smile and said, “So I see that you’re staying with us for the holidays!”

“No,” my mother corrected.  “I’m staying with my family, I’m just sleeping with you.”

(And since I don’t have anything right now to top that, Merry Christmas, all!)

Dreaming Of A White Christmas

December 24, 2012

So I thought I had it bad when I realized I had failed to lay in a critical household supply, necessitating a Christmas Eve grocery store run.

But I wasn’t even close.

The folks checking out in front of me looked like they had forgotten to buy anything for a holiday meal, but it turns out they had actually completely prepared for Christmas dinner with their extended family when they arrived.

What they were not prepared for was the call they received this morning from their kids saying, “Mom, Dad, great news, we and the kids are actually going to make it in a day early!  That won’t be a problem, right?”

Pro tip, kids:  People in that situation will often say it’s not a problem, when in fact, it is a huge problem, and if you pull that trick too often, it’s a fast way to guarantee a white Christmas for yourself.

(They still cover cadavers in the morgue with white sheets, right?)

Straight Talk (Part Four)

December 21, 2012

And let’s be honest here.  We all know somebody who we know in our hearts that placing a gun in their hand would just be a bad idea.  (And if you don’t, I direct you to the old joke about “there’s always at least one weirdo riding public transportation at any given time; and if you don’t see them, it’s you.”)  Heck, some of us know people who we know in our hearts that placing string in their hand would be a bad idea!

And right now, that topic is what a lot of people want to talk about.  They’re entitled; it’s part of the First Amendment.  You know, that amendment that comes before the second one.

So let ’em talk.  In fact, I encourage you to join in – respectfully – because guns are a subject that needs to be talked about more in the United States, particularly without fear of reprisals.  I have more I could say on the subject myself, in fact.

But that’s not the only subject that needs to be talked about, and I’m out of time for this week, so we’ll have to pick this up another time . . . after Christmas, I think.

Happy Holidays, all, and if you can enjoy the time with your family . . . then I suggest you be glad that you have that option.

Straight Talk (Part Three)

December 20, 2012

Are there situations where a gun is the tool needed for the job?

Sadly, yes, because like it or not (and I don’t), there are situations where it’s kill or die, for instance, and anyone betting on me being a pacifist in those situations is running the risk of losing that bet, but let us not try to mask what a gun is with pretty sounding words.

A gun is a tool designed to kill.

If I see someone walking around with a hammer, I’m going to tend to assume they’re looking to use it on a nail, or at the very least that they feel the need to be prepared to deal with a nail at a moment’s notice.  And if I find myself  talking with someone who spends all their spare time in hammer shops, talks about hammers all the time, and has more hammers than any one human being is ever going to need in their lifetime, I’m going to keep a very close eye on that person.

Maybe that person is a trained and skilled carpenter who’ll only use their hammer in the course of legitimate jobs, and maybe they’re not, but until I’m damn sure I know what kind of person I’m dealing with, I, as a private citizen, am never going to turn my back on them.


Straight Talk (Part Two)

December 19, 2012

So first let’s talk about guns, and let’s start by skewering one of the more ridiculous things ever said about them:

“Guns don’t kill people, people kill people.”

Now the implication of this (assuming you’re not one of those people who like to point out that it’s not the fall that kills you, it’s the sudden stop at the end, so technically it’s bullets at velocity that kill people) is that guns are “just” tools, and they most certainly are tools, but it glosses over an important point to imply they are “just” tools.

Screwdrivers are tools too, and you could just as accurately say “Screwdrivers don’t unscrew screws, people unscrew screws,” but have you ever tried to unscrew a screw without a screwdriver or a drill with a screwdriver bit?  It’s a serious pain to do, if you can do it at all.  You need a screwdriver to do it quickly and effectively, because a screwdriver is a tool designed with precisely that job in mind.

And guns are tools designed to kill.  (Don’t yell at me yet, I’m still getting warmed up.)

Straight Talk (Part One)

December 18, 2012

“How does something like the Sandy Hook shooting happen?” is a question that’s going to be asked and argued for some time to come, and despite many people’s beliefs, an adequate answer that is both complete and simple is going to be elusive.  This is often the case with questions like that, but it’s going to be especially true with this question for a very simple reason:

Because the incomplete answers are hot button issues in the United States; the type of issues I never discuss with anyone outside a small group of trusted friends and family who have proven to me time and time again that they are capable of having an intelligent conversation respectful of the fact that differing points of view are actually possible without the other person being evil and/or an idiot.

For instance, one incomplete answer to the question of “How does something like the Sandy Hook shooting happen?” is “Because guns are so easy to obtain.”  Don’t bother yelling at me for saying that because, like it or not, it remains a fact that this kid couldn’t have shot anyone if he hadn’t been able to get his hands on the guns in the first place.  Also don’t bother yelling at me for calling it an incomplete answer because, like it or not, it is an incomplete answer at best, and at worst it’s a glib attempt to oversimply and/or gloss over other, equally important, aspects of this tragedy.

But it’s a place to start.