November 19, 2013

What a cool story this is. Hat tip: Instapundit.

When the zombie apocalypse comes, cats gotta survive too. Me, I’m thinking, why not just pack a manual can opener? I haven’t used an electric for years.

Those who read this blog know I’m no fan of President Obama, but this is disgraceful. Is it me, or does it seem that this President shies away from any kind of opportunity that would bring this country together. I truly believe he wants to tear the country apart any chance he gets. So many opportunities lost, and to what end?

Turns out Clint Eastwood’s empty chair thing at the 2012 GOP convention was more on target than anyone could have imagined.

Continued prayers for the folks in Illinois and the Philippines after one incredible, historic week of weather across the globe. Kinda makes the promise of our first winter storm of the year seem like small potatoes.

Like the link says, Lady Godiva rode a horse, the “Goddess of the Train” rode Chicago’s Red Line.

This story shows the kind of Pope we Roman Catholics have.

Headline: “I get offered sex all the time, but no-one asks me out for dinner’: Glamour model who spent £22k on her body says men can’t see past her fake breasts and fillers.” I can think of a few Goodboys who would splurge on dinner if they knew what the dessert was!

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 01:21 | Comments Off on Tuesday Tidbits
November 18, 2013

It’s a late Saturday afternoon at a nearly-empty Superstition Springs driving range. My golf guru Alex Black has just finished a putting clinic for a dozen folks and he’s closing up shop for the day. Asks me my how my golf game is, I tell him he’ll be hearing from me soon. “Can’t wait!”, he says with a big grin on his face. There’s an elderly couple whacking balls at one of the stalls, but other than that I’ve got the place and its huge putting green and chipping area all to myself. I’ve dragged a bunch of bright orange balls out for practice, and I’m chipping and putting after hitting a leisurely bucket. The warm afternoon begins to cool as the long shadows grow; the sun is slowly dipping towards the mountains to the west.

My old home away from home feels like a comfortable old pair of shoes. I am at peace and at home on the range.

What a difference four and a half months can make. The last time I left the Superstition Springs driving range, I was (to quote the Ramones) “all hopped up and ready to go” for my upcoming Goodboys Invitational weekend. That last day was blazing hot, the demon sun directly above, the range filled with familiar faces. Today, as I paid for my bucket at the shop and made my way to the range I saw no familiar (or friendly) faces other than Alex’s. The guy at the desk tells me there’s a new guy in charge and there’s been a big turnover in staff. I believe him. Nevertheless, the range and putting green are in great shape and the grass around the green is New England-style thick.

Overall, I’m pleased with my work during my bucket, as a few small tweaks made following the two disappointing rounds that closed out my New England golf summer had their desired effect. In thinking about those rounds I realized I had fallen into a bad habit of my backswing becoming a little too quick and steep, whereupon I would jump at the ball and allow all kinds of inconsistencies to result. By correcting that, I found almost from the start a nice tempo and a return to the way I had been swinging during most of Goodboys weekend.

Not that there isn’t work to do this winter as I try and achieve my new goal of playing bogey golf regularly by next year’s Goodboys weekend. My goals are pretty simplistic and not necessarily that difficult to achieve, but they will require discipline and attention to detail:

1. Improve consistency off the tee. Simply put, I have to be able to find a go-to club when there are narrow fairways I have to hit. My irons have gotten to a point where I have a lot of confidence in my second shots; I now have to find a way to get there more often. Whether it’s via 5-wood or a 3-hybrid – or even a 5-iron if necessary – I simply have to find more fairways off the tee when the going gets narrow.

2. Get more creative with my chipping game around the greens. If there is one thing my golf rounds this year showed, it’s that relying on my pitching wedge all the time for chipping, no matter the lie and distance, didn’t get the job done. Too much inconsistency and throwing shots away. My goal this winter is to incorporate a sand wedge and 8-iron into the mix and see if I can make better decisions around the green that ultimately lead to fewer putts taken.

3. Improve my putting. Simply put, if I want to play bogey golf I have to eliminate the three and occasional four putt. That’s just needlessly throwing stokes away. Without question, an improved chipping game would help, but I need to find a putting technique I can stick with. I already took the first step yesterday by having Maurice down at the local PGA Superstore adjust my putter angle by four degrees so I don’t have to have my hands forward in order to keep the blade flat on the ground; now I can anchor my elbows against my side and stroke it in a way I’m more comfortable and accustomed to. Next, I’m returning to the putting stroke I used a few years ago and committing to that going forward, come rain or come shine. Taking a few putts at the store following the adjustment I already began feeling more comfortable over the ball, so let’s see how that goes.

4. Recognize my golf ADD. I’m not sure what it is, but when I’m out on the golf course I just don’t pay close enough attention to anything. I take too many shots without even considering where I am and what I want to do with every shot. I’m in too much in a rush to take the shot and move on. You can call it ADD, poor course management, or not being “in the moment”, but the fact is, I throw dozens of shots away out there without even considering the consequences. If I want to play bogey golf that simply has to stop. Alex suggested jotting a brief phrase or two about what I’m trying to achieve that particular day (“low and slow”, “be aggressive”, enjoy yourself”, etc.) on a sticky and putting that on my golf card, and then taking it out to see what the hole looks like before every shot. It’s worth a try, for sure.

None of these are nearly as difficult to achieve as all the other changes I made during my Golf Quest 2012. Going from 108 to around 100 took a lot of work; I’m hoping that shaving off the necessary 10-12 strokes to consistently shoot bogey golf can be done with just a few tweaks and some attention to detail. We’ll soon see.

Filed in: Golf & Sports by The Great White Shank at 02:40 | Comments Off on (At) Home On The Range
November 16, 2013

A few thoughts while wondering what on earth I have to do to get my swimming pool from cloudy to crystal-clear again:

If you have a chance, check out Killing Kennedy on the National Geographic channel. It’s the movie version of Bill O’Reilly’s fine book. It’s fast-faced, riveting, and a great tale. Prediction: watch Barack Obama’s popularity take a further nosedive as even Democrats compare JFK’s legacy against a President who has been revealed to be nothing but a lying and incompetent farce. To think this clown occupies the same Oval Office as JFK did shows just how much this country has fallen in just a half-century’s time.

Between watching Killing Kennedy and a special on JFK’s last 48 hours that followed it last night I was struck with a great sense of sadness and melancholy – not because he was a great, bad, or indifferent president – that’s for the historians to discuss – but because he and Jackie were so young, so full of life, so charismatic, and the kind of people others aspired to be like. Maybe it’s just me, but I couldn’t help but watch them and the way they carried themselves in comparison to the current occupants of the White House who are nothing but calculating, lying, and manipulating opportunists and charlatans. You can say all you want about JFK’s shortcomings – and there were many – but you could tell he and Jackie held their office and position in extremely high regard. America lost more than just a President when JFK was shot.

No Oprah, it’s because your President is nothing but a incompetent and radical Socialist who has driven this country to the brink of insolvency and despair by his failed wealth-distribution policies. But you’re too ignorant too even consider such a concept.

One can only hope.

And the hits just keep on coming.

The European Tour has done some cool commercials for how good their golfers are, but this about takes the cake.

Hard to believe the holiday season is here in less than two weeks. Who’s got plans? I know I don’t – no money.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 23:45 | Comments Off on Weekending
November 15, 2013

Just in case Tracey isn’t convinced that hundreds of folks have discovered my blog since eschewing negative political attacks on the lying, ignorant Liar-in-C…. oops, scratch that. This is all about happy happy times.

See, even Mr. Seal is happy today. Let’s just hope he doesn’t suffer the same fate as Snuffy the seal – oops, I’m sorry, I keep forgetting this is all about happy times and happy stories. Y’know – stories like this one.

Oh wait, that wasn’t happy – not my fault, excuse me if I consider scientists and experts the same bunch of know-nothings. They’re either trying to get their names on papers or sucking up to someone for their government grant. Call me a New Englander if you want, but I’ll take “horse sense” over “book sense” any day.

Take away every member of the Obama administration and you realize there are good people in this world.

You want happy? I got happy!

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 01:38 | Comment (1)
November 14, 2013

My wife Tracey says no one reads my blog because there’s not a lot of happy and positive stuff to keep people coming back. I tell her I don’t really care one way or the other – I think I provide a good mix of nonsense and political stuff from a conservative perspective, but what do I know? So just to keep her happy, and to have more than 1,000 visitors here by end of week here’s a new Goodboys Nation weblog. No more bad news or sad news, from now it’s all sunshine and happiness until it makes you wanna puke.

You want happy pictures? I got ’em:

You want happy and fun stories? I got ’em:

Check this cool football play out. Me, I don’t understand it because – even though I don’t know football – I thought as a lineman you always paid attention to the ball. Still, a fun story otherwise. (Hat tip: NRO’s Corner Blog)

Dog saves paralyzed skiier.

A wonderful charity doing good works in the typhoon-ravaged Philippines.

And how could you not have a happy post without inspiring music? Think I’ll go down myself a glass of four eggs.

Happy birthday to my brother Dave!!

There, can’t wait for the 1,000 hits before end of week.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 00:41 | Comments Off on Happy Talk
November 13, 2013

You know they say, once you’ve lost Hitler it’s time to turn out the lights. Say goodnight, Gracie – err, Eva. (Hat tip: Hot Air).

So you’ve got none other than Bill “Now you listen to me. I did not have sex with that woman, Miss Lewinsky” Clinton now instructing President Obama that he has to make good on folks after lying that they could keep their doctors and their insurance plans.

You’ve got congressional Democrats telling the White House they have 72 hours to “fix” Obamacare or they’ll consider joing House GOP members on their own “keep your insurance if you like it” legislation.

And you’ve got California senator Diane Feinstein joining Louisiana senator Mary Landrieu on the latter’s own “keep it if you like it” legislation.

Of course, this is all preposterous because the fact is, those insurance policies lost by nearly 5 million folks (heading upwards to as much as 75 to one hundred million folks by some estimates once the employer mandate kicks in) are gone forever. They’re like water to the Obamacare oil; the two don’t mix and can’t – Obamacare cost/benefit metrics don’t allow for such a thing. Either the law stands and the folks lose their insurance, or the law goes. There’s no in between. So the Democrats own it, they own this crisis (if you want to call it that) after voting for it 100%. Remember, no Republicans voted for it, not a one. And Democrats also voted down a GOP bill that would have allowed folks to keep their insurance against the heavy-handed, so-called “grandfathering” of insurance plans instituted by HHS director Kathleen “The Ghoul” Sebelius back in 2010. So it all belongs to the Democrats. And to see them now try to distance themselves from the very law they voted in four years ago is pretty amusing to watch.

I guess “San Fran Nan”cy Pelosi was right when she said Obamacare needed to be passed so folks could see what was in it.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 02:45 | Comments Off on But I Thought When the President Said, “If I Liked My Plan I could Keep It. Period.” He Was Telling The Truth. After All, Why Would the President Of The United States Want To Lie To Me? Why? Why?
November 12, 2013

Is there anything so magical, so mystical as hearing a breeze come up from out of nowhere? It could be on a sultry, sticky August afternoon in New England when, the afternoon turning to dusk and the sky darkening to the north and west, you hear the first sounds of leaves stirring in thick trees. Or, you’re laying down for an afternoon nap and you hear the wind chimes out on the patio start tinkling away. Or, sitting on a rock by the ocean on an unusually hot June afternoon and suddenly you feel the wind shift and the air cool as a fog bank starts rolling in on you. Or, a late night when you can’t sleep and you walk out on your back deck and look up at the stars and hear in the darkness all kinds of trees stirring uneasily in the breezy night. And is there a better feeling in the world then being outside on a warm October day in New England when the wind comes up and the leaves are flying all around you, making scratching sounds as they skid along the pavement. I always feel blessed and touched by God when a falling leaf hits me on its trip to the ground. Do you?

Next to the sound of distant thunder and waves washing up on the shore the sound of wind in the trees touches me in a strange and magical way. I always feel smaller in God’s creation as I watch the results of the movement of the earth and the conflict between high-pressure and low-pressure systems make Creation dance with joy. One of my finest memories golfing with the Goodboys was a breezy Halloween day on a Green Meadow course that was anything but – covered with a bed of oak leaves the warm wind put everything in motion in such a way that you felt a mere player in Creation’s game.

…Of course, alternatively, one of the harshest experiences one can have is walking outside on an early New England February morning, the sky rosy and cold above you, the wind finding its way through any and every crevasse in your clothes to create an immediate chill.

We have a couple of pieces of metal art on our outside walls and it’s always a comfort to me when, in the middle of the night, I’m awakened by the sound of soft banging against the walls when a wind comes up. As much as I want to snuggle further under the covers, I can’t help but get up and walk outside to listen to Creation in motion.

And, is there a more peaceful sight than curtains stirring in an open window on a warm summer night?

Of course, wind can be a destructive force, as the folks in the Philippines are finding out as I speak. Prayers and positive thoughts go out to the good folks there in the hopes the loss of life and folks’ way of life will be minimal. On a smaller scale, it’s frustrating to see a nice, healthy queen palm stalk get broken and bent by a strong gust coming from the southwest. But you take the good with the bad.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 02:28 | Comments Off on Wind
November 11, 2013

Thanks and prayers go out not just to those throughout the years who have served and fought and died on the front lines for the cause of freedom, but to their families and loved back home who have and who still struggle every day without the care and companionship of a loved one. You have my highest respect and appreciation for everything you have done, do, and will continue to do in the future.

——————–

Prayers for the dead and the survivors of Typhoon Haiyan. What an incredible storm. They say one of the islands was hit with a 20-ft. storm surge. I don’t care who you are or what you do, you’re not going to survive a 20 ft. storm surge. The Filipinos will be needing every dollar you can assist with.

——————–

I know the Red Sox story is starting to fade to black but this post at Surviving Grady brings back some cool memories. Personally, for me, it was how they bounced back after that crazy runner inteference call in Game 3. Showed me the team had some mettle.

——————–

You can call me whatever you want, but reading this post at Power Line blog only reinforces my belief that the colonial powers should never have left Africa. You can say whar you want about the brutality of the British, French, and Germans all you wish, but they would have never allowed for the mass murder and chaos that has existed on that continent since the European powers left. As a continent Africa is lost.

——————–

…but no fear, not all is lost in the world. ABBA is considering reuniting for the 40th anniversary of thir first hit, “Waterloo”. I always digged that tune, put then again, I’ve always been a sucker for the kind of hook-laden confectionary you just don’t hear any more. Viva ABBA!

——————–

Happy Veteran’s Day from all the Goodboys and Goodboys Nation weblog.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 22:07 | Comments Off on On Veterans Day
November 8, 2013

Saw this article and immediately thought of frequent commenter Jana, whose Prospect, KY hacienda is replete with all kinds of dolphin figurines and such. Here’s the key bit as far as I’m concerned:

Perhaps the homicidal-dolphin phenomenon is more prevalent than we know. As Kathleen Dudzinski, my research supervisor at the Dolphin Communication Project, used to say: ‘You never hear from the people that the dolphins didn’t save.’ It might well be that some dolphins are pathologically indifferent to our fate, leaving us to drown when they could have easily saved our lives. Although the idea of killer-dolphins sounds ridiculous, the world has seen stranger things. One news item from 2012 tells the tale of a fisherman lost at sea in the Pacific who was led to safety not by a dolphin, but by a shark. He was lucky that friendly dolphins did not show up to drive the friendly shark away, or he might never have been heard from again.

I always thought the idea of a cute dolphin was misdirected – after all, if they’re so happy and carefree and fun-loving, why do sharks steer clear of them like The Great White Shank hearing about a Michelle Obama TV interview? The sharks obviously know something we don’t know. And while I enjoyed “Flipper” as much as any kid did, a dolphin in captivity is just normally going to perform whatever way it needs to in order to be fed fish – heck, our rabbits are at their cutest when they’re hungry. They’re no stooges, we humans are just the idiots.

I’m not sure exactly the point of this post, but I’m sure Jana and I can Skype it out one of these days…

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 01:59 | Comments (3)
November 7, 2013

Kind of a tough weekend this past weekend. Got a call a little after 3 AM on Sunday (calls that time of day are never a good thing) from my sister-in-law that her rabbit Cookie (left), one of the famed “Beastie Boys” was in distress. He seemed to have had some kind of a stroke or seizure after appearing to be fine just a few hours earlier. The problem with rabbit issues at that hour is that there are really no veterinarians specializing in exotics (as rabbits are considered) available off-hours, especially on a weekend. If you’ve got a cat choking on a hairball or a dog with a broken leg there are all sorts of 24/7 clinics available for treatment, but with rabbits it’s a whole ‘nutha thing. Tam did the best she could trying to keep Cookie comfortable throughout a long, hard night but come morning it was inevitable that there was little anyone could do and shortly thereafter Cookie passed away in her arms.

Cookie was good rabbit – quiet but mischievous. An observer by nature, we call his type “destructo-rabbit” because, as mellow and laid-back as he seemed, he was the one who would do all the damage to Tam’s carpet by constantly – and I do mean constantly – digging at it under the bed throughout the night. Cookie enjoyed romaine lettuce and parsley and a slice of banana, but what he did best was just keeping an eye on things while his more adventurous mate Floppy (a.k.a. Sherman, like the tank) grabbed life by its throat every way he could. Cookie always seemed to me to be the more fragile of the Beastie Boys – when Tam and I extracted them from a very bad situation in Florida and drove them all the way to Arizona, it was Cookie who we feared most wouldn’t make it. Whereas Sherm seemed to embrace the sheer adventure of it all, Cookie got the motion sickness and suffered most of the way.

Having been there, I understand why Tam is still inconsolable at the trauma of this past weekend. But it’s one of those cases where, if you love a pet as a member of your family, when given the choice between being with them when they pass away or not being there, of course you would want to be there, no matter how hard it would be. I’m sure that at some level, conscious or unconscious, Cookie knew he was with the human who loved him most and was just as sad to leave Tam as she was at seeing him pass. Tam asks where God was when Cookie was struggling through his last hours; I told her God was with Cookie through her – as Jesus said, “Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” (Luke 17:21).

Fortunately, we anticipated that sooner or later one of the Beastie Boys would pass away before the other so we gave Butterscotch to Tam after she lost her mate Geronimo last year. The fact that Sherm still has someone to pal around with is important. I’m not sure Cookie ever really accepted Butterscotch as one of the gang – truth be told, I think he felt like the third wheel after Butterscotch crashed their party, as she always seemed to take fancy to Sherm more than he. Nevertheless, as all rabbits do, he adapted and put the best face forward he could. In the end, it wasn’t uncommon to see the two Beastie Boys on either side of Butterscotch, nose to nose to nose in bunny bliss.

Rest in peace, Cookie – you were a good rabbit and your owner misses you dearly.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 00:45 | Comments (2)

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