May 5, 2020

Enough of the gloom and doom!

…and here’s something that will also bring a smile to your face.
(Hat tip: Larry Schweikart.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 02:51 | Comments (0)
May 4, 2020

Well, it’s another new non-work week here at Goodboys Nation weblog. I finally decided to file for unemployment; I don’t think much is going to come from it, but hey, ya never know. Got my first response from a slew of online job applications from a local pool retail supply store, so we’ll see where that goes. I have my first webinar with the outplacement services company my employer signed me up for, but I gotta say (at least at this time) I’m gonna draw a line in the sand at any job where I would have to commute into a real bona fide business office more than once a week. Just the thought of it gives me the heebie-jeebies. Sure, the money would be better than any part-time retail store gig but that’s just not where my priorities lie right now. Of course, things could change but right now I’m really trying to stay and live in the moment.

But that’s not the purpose of this post. It’s not a rant by any stretch of the imagination: I’m just asking questions here.

This Tyler O’Neil column at PJ Media is a must-read. For me, here are the money parts:

Early estimates of the COVID-19 death rate, cited to justify the lockdowns, have proven far too pessimistic. In March, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated a 3.4 percent fatality rate and Dr. Anthony Fauci estimated that the fatality rate of the coronavirus was about 2 percent. As PJ Media’s Matt Margolis reported, at least five studies have placed the death rate below 1 percent, confirming President Donald Trump’s hunch.

…Both social learning and mini-cascades shine a light on how news of the coronavirus’ danger spread. As states with coronavirus hot spots reacted, other states followed suit, preparing for outbreaks of their own.

Yet the political slant is also extremely significant, especially considering the different ways state and local officials have carried out their lockdowns. Greenville, Miss. Mayor Errick Simmons notoriously defended his ban on drive-in church services that led to parishioners facing $500 fines. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio threatened to “permanently” close churches and synagogues unless they comply with his orders — and he issued a disgusting threat to the Jewish community in particular. Andy Berke, mayor of Chattanooga, Tenn., banned drive-in church services even though Tennessee’s governor permitted them. Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear dispatched the State Police against a church hosting a drive-in service. Police in Virginia threatened a pastor with a year in jail for hosting a socially-distanced church service, enacting Gov. Ralph Northam’s order.

All these political leaders belong to the same party: the Democratic Party. Not all of the onerous coronavirus restrictions that violate religious freedom have been issued by Democrats, but there is a disturbing correlation between the left-wing party and crisis orders that single out churches, synagogues, and mosques. It seems one party is more likely than the other to think of religion as less than “essential,” and much of that animus traces back to the mistaken idea that religion (Christianity in particular) and science are in conflict.

…Liberals often use “science” as a talking-point to advocate their agendas, even if those agendas arguably conflict with the best science (see abortion, climate predictions, and transgender activism). It appears the tide of science is turning on coronavirus lockdowns, and Democrats are not adjusting with it. As Republicans suggest plans to slowly reopen America while preserving tight social-distancing measures, Democrats insist that the full lockdowns must continue.

While the lockdowns began as a public health measure, their continued extension appears to have more to do with power than safety.

I was thinking about the absurdity of these “one size fits all” state lock-downs that are going on around the country right now, and I’m both appalled and frustrated at the lack of common business sense and human ingenuity that surely someone ought to have at our state and local governance levels. Let me offer my example, I’m sure any of y’all could think of your own:

I was thinking about this on Saturday when I went by the PGA TOUR Supertore down the street (closed) on my way over to Lowe’s (open) for a plant stake to bolster up a recalcitrant miniature date palm and my local Fry’s (open) for groceries. Inside Lowe’s there had to have been at least a hundred, perhaps two hundred folks working and shopping. Inside the Fry’s there were hundreds of folks food shopping. I’d guess the ratio of masked to unmasked folks in both places being, oh, 40/60. So why is the Lowe’s and the Fry’s open and the PGA TOUR Superstore closed? Let’s forget for a moment what kind of business is deemed to be “essential” vs. “non-essential” – in my view, that’s nothing more than a straw man argument, entirely subjective, and based on some criteria devised by some bow-tied, bum-kissing state employee who doesn’t have to worry about his or her next paycheck anytime soon.

…I mean, even on its most busy day and time (let’s say Saturday or Sunday morning): why, I’ll bet if there are hundred souls total inside at any given point in time you’d be surprised. And it’s not as if your average PGA TOUR Superstore is some cramped, dimly-lit hole in the wall – these are as much a big “box store” as any Lowe’s or Home Depot. You’ve got half a dozen or more hitting bays (all “safely” distanced, BTW). You’ve got wide aisles with all kinds of golf equipment spaced out and a putting area easy to monitor for “safe distance”. So why are PGA TOUR Superstores closed?

Surely, there must be some genius in (in this particular case) the Arizona state or Chandler city governments who could easily assess the “safety” of any given business (PGA TOUR Superstore or otherwise) by an onsite inspection and/or by whipping up a metric as to how many people you could safely allow inside that would enable it to stay open “safely” and, y’know, generate income for its employees and tax revenue for the city and state, isn’t there? Like, I dunno, take the square footage of any particular establishment and divide it into six-foot quadrants or something like that to determine how “safe” it is for x number of folks to shop?

I don’t think what I am saying here is anything controversial. It makes zero sense – at least to me – why this “one size fits all” criteria is being used, in Arizona or anywhere else. Since I’m not much of a conspiracy theorist, I have to figure it all comes down to the following: (1) gross incompetence, (2) intellectual laziness, and/or (3) herd mentality – why, that state over there is doing x, we should therefore do x. Certainly, as taxpayers and citizens we should expect – and deserve – better from our state’s governance.

Once all of this is over and wreckage of our economy and people’s lives and livelihoods is analyzed and assessed to what could have been done better at all levels of government we’re going to find out just how ill-served we have all been served by not just the federal government (most particularly, the CDC and the FDA) but a vast majority of our state governors and our public health officials. Look, I don’t expect a governor – Republican or Democrat – to know how to implement an effective response strategy in the face of a public health emergency where the data needed to make meaningful decisions isn’t available or is hard to correlate, but I would expect every state’s public health department to have at least the general contours of what an effective strategy would look like without having to implement a knee-jerk, “one size fits all” lock-down.

Think about what a draconian measure this is, and how needless it is. After all, every business that opens in any state has to provide various kinds of information in order to be certified for opening; there are any number of regulations any business has to follow or provide in order to open (signage, for instance). Certainly included in these regulations are (or should be) information relating to type of business, physical plant size, and the number of employees. And it’s this same kind of information that could (and should) be used to make intelligent decisions about how that business could continue to operate in the face of a public health emergency of any size or kind instead of having it wrecked by a knee-jerk action taken out of fear and zero common sense.

Certainly as citizens of whatever state we all happen to reside in we should expect this kind of measured response and level of competence from our elected leaders. But what do I know? I’m just a dumb, newly-filed member of the unemployed.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 13:30 | Comments (0)
May 3, 2020

All over the country the natives are getting restless and people are starting to push back against the so-called “public health experts” who haven’t been right about a single thing yet when it comes to this Coronavirus pandemic and the mainstream media narrative supporting totalitarian tin-pot despots in Democratic-controlled states and cities across the country. President Trump has been right all along: the mainstream media is the enemy of people: these folks have little interest in the lives and livelihoods of small business owners across the country; they have a narrative to push (their hatred of President Trump), and they don’t care who or how many people’s lives are ruined in order to push that narrative.

Can you imagine the outcry if a Republican had said this? Dude’s lucky that he’s still protected in two ways: (1) he’s a Democrat, and (2) he’s African-American. All he has lost is the seat he resigned (and rightly so). Had he been a Republican his life and his family’s would have been ruined from the resulting non-stop media outrage.

…and likewise this. Why are Democrats and liberals such hateful people? Why, I always thought liberalism was all about tolerance, acceptance and diversity!

I don’t know whether Tara Reade’s accusations are accurate or not, but here are a couple of thoughts:

1. The hypocrisy of Democrats, liberals, and feminists is now out there for everyone to see (not that it will matter much – after all, these people are shameless).

2. You can bet that if Reade’s accusations are deemed to be true, the media will then do everything it can to hone in on President Trump and all prior accusations against him of a similar nature. The problem with that strategy, however, would be twofold: (1) Were something like this going to hurt Trump it would have hurt him in 2016. It didn’t. People know what they have with Trump and are willing to ride with it; (2) even if the accusations against Trump were true, they took place when he was a private citizen. In Reade’s case they involve a sitting U.S. senator; therefore, it be a gross (in more ways than one) betrayal of the public trust. You cannot in any way compare the two.

Heard a funny line on the radio today: the COVID-19 virus obviously doesn’t have anything on Hollary Clinton – if it had it would have been dead within a week.

The prediction here is that Biden survives this battle, but he’s going to increasingly be seen as losing the war. Not only was his performance on “Morning Joe” abysmal, but it was abysmal as a performance given under the absolute best circumstances. Look, he had to know in advance the kinds of questions Mika Brzezinski was going to ask him, and he still couldn’t understand the gist of what she was asking. I mean, sure, her questions were pointed, but they were softball questions Biden should have been able to hit out of the park. Instead, he looked like a deer caught in the headlights on more than one occasion.

…no matter who he ends up picking for a VP, Biden’s problem is going to similar to that of Hillary Clinton’s in 2016: the more he is seen, the lower his approval ratings will go. The issues shared by he and Clinton against President Trump are staggeringly similar: you have a career Washington politician bought and paid for by virtually every special interest you can imagine and a committed globalist running against an outsider who – like him or not – shakes things up and puts the country first.

…in 2016 Biden would have destroyed Trump had he run, but 2020 is going to be far different. The most obvious difference is the noticeable decrease Biden’s general appearance and mental acuity: he’s only three years older than Trump but looks and acts as if he is thirteen years older. Secondly, after everything this country has gone through involving China and the World Health Organization, anyone running to return to the Obama doctrine of globalism is going to be running against a pretty stiff headwind. You can bet dollars to doughnuts Trump’s campaign is going to wrap China and the WHO around Biden’s throat, and the evidence is going to be extremely damning.

…one final thought on the Biden campaign: I just don’t see where young progressive liberals and Democrats go come November. After all, it’s not as if Biden is an electrifying candidate. Say what you want about Trump voters: they will crawl miles over broken glass to re-elect the President. I have a hard time believing Bernie voters and young progressives are going to feel the same way about voting for the likes of old, petrifying Washington swamp creatures like Biden, Nancy Pelosi, and Chuck Schumer. The enthusiasm gap is going to be monstrous.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 01:50 | Comments (0)
May 1, 2020

The late, great Warren Zevon might have been a troubled soul, but he was a visionary. Listen and read his lyrics to “Mohammed’s Radio”, and I’ll ask you to to think who “everybody”, “the sheriff”, and “the general and his aide de camp” might be.

Everybody’s restless and they’ve got no place to go
Someone’s always trying to tell them
Something they already know
So their anger and resentment flow

But don’t it make you want to rock and roll
All night long
Mohammed’s Radio
I heard somebody singing sweet and soulful
On the radio, Mohammed’s Radio

You know, the Sheriff’s got his problems too
He will surely take them out on you
In walked the village idiot and his face was all aglow
He’s been up all night listening to Mohammed’s Radio

Don’t it make you want to rock and roll
All night long
Mohammed’s Radio
I heard somebody singing sweet and soulful
On the radio, Mohammed’s Radio

Everybody’s desperate trying to make ends meet
Work all day, still can’t pay the price of gasoline and meat
Alas, their lives are incomplete

Don’t it make you want to rock and roll
All night long Mohammed’s Radio
I heard somebody singing sweet and soulful
On the radio, Mohammed’s Radio

You’ve been up all night listening for his drum
Hoping that the righteous might just might just might just come
I heard the General whisper to his aide-de-camp
“Be watchful for Mohammed’s lamp”

Don’t it make you want to rock and roll
All night long Mohammed’s Radio

I think y’all will be able to figure out that, once you know “Mohammed’s Radio” is the cause of basic human freedom, everything that is going on right now – most specifically in states ruled by tin-pot Democratic despot governors – makes sense.

Like I said, Zevon was a visionary.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 23:25 | Comments (0)
April 30, 2020

For those about to fly we salute you. Why isn’t the mainstream media reporting on hopeful developments like this instead of disingenuous garbage like this and this?

Answer: (1) Because the mainstream media sucks, and (2) they would have to admit that Donald Trump wasn’t a loon and asking the right questions after all. As usual.

The answer to this question is yes. Let those who are willing to accept living like a bunch of sheep under states and/or cities poorly run and recklessly-managed cesspools of corruption under totalitarian, socialist tin-pot dictators go. Why should taxpayers under states effectively managed and capably run have to bail out such tomfoolery?

…and speaking of cesspools of corruption, Massachusetts is a joke. Any moron with half a brain would be able to devise a solution where golf courses could open safely through self-imposed social distancing – recommend the use of pull carts or limit riders to singles and advise caution in how they walk and play with each other. It’s really not that hard. But then again, it does require some ingenuity and – more importantly – a desire to open up the economy. Something Charlie Baker (a RINO Republican) seems afraid to do.

…in the end, the number of deaths due to the COVID-19 virus is going to have to in some way take into account those considered normal to a “normal” flu (for example, those who didn’t get a flu shot – recognizing, of course, the relative effectiveness of a flu shot any given year), and those considered “entirely preventable”. When all is said and done I’ll bet you the majority of the nursing home deaths in New York, New Jersey, Illinois, and California will be found to be the latter. And Andrew Cuomo, the so-called “hero” governor of New York, is going to look like shit. Here’s just another reason. Unconscionable. These assholes have blood on their hands, and I cannot wait for the civil lawsuits that will be forthcoming. You thought New York was bankrupt in the ’70s? You ain’t seen nothing yet.

At least in my healthcare IT company my bonus was announced before folks like me got laid off. But, yeah, the same outrage applies. And things haven’t gotten better since I was let go. Remember, in this day and age senior management always takes care of themselves and screws the little guy. Maybe it has always been that way. Unfortunately, you can only teach ethics, you can’t enforce them. It’s a part of capitalism I hate, but Elizabeth Warren-esque alternatives where the government advises how private corporations should be run is not acceptable either.

Let me go on record as saying I believe Tara Reade’s accusations, but I don’t want “Slo’ Joe” going anywhere. I want him at the top of the Democratic ticket with either Kamala Harris or Stacy Abrams as his running mate. Trust me, “Slo’ Joe” is going to be twisted and turned in a thousand ways between now and Election Day – every big-money donor with an agenda knows the guy is borderline senile and incapable of putting out a platform of his own. The activists will tear him and his campaign apart like wolves on a wounded sheep.

…as will the Trump campaign. They will be merciless.

After posting this article, CNN should not be allowed within range of the White House for any reason whatsoever. Given China’s known involvement and behavior with the COVID-19 pandemic, this is not only ill-advised but borderline treasonous because it gives comfort to the enemies of this country. Not that I would ever advise how Woodrow Wilson would have handled this kind of things, but… CNN should be ashamed of themselves, but they’re so friggin’ dumb that they don’t know how to even be ashamed.

This drivel from The Atlantic (a no-longer-relevant loony bin for failed journalists) gives you an idea of what those of us who see things both clearly and rationally are up against. The liberal left has gone completely off the deep end.

Note the latest increase in reported COVID-19 deaths are all from Democratic-led states (except for Massachusetts, which, run by RINO Charlie Baker might as well be run by a Democrat). Geez, given the above, I wonder why that is? The reason is Democratic governors (and Charlie Baker) have little concern for the lives of senior citizens. A certain Goodboy wants to blame it all on Donald Trump; I would argue that if you are a Democratic (or RINO) governor you’re greatest responsibility is to the most vulnerable in your state. You have failed.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 01:55 | Comments (0)
April 29, 2020

Have we reached a point of no return where the Coronavirus hysteria and freak show perpetrated by the mainstream media and know-it-all scaredycats who put their unconditional trust in over-hyped models by so-called “experts” (who have never been right about anything, at any time) in the absence of honest data has reached it’s apex?

One would hope so. After all, states led by their governors are starting to open up, and we will all know soon enough whether COVID-19 turns out to be nothing more than an average flu season (or perhaps even less), now that it’s a virtual given that this Coronavirus has been in the general population far longer than originally thought and therefore much less deadly. Anecdotal evidence is already out there. And don’t give me that bullshit about not caring about the number of people who have died – of course, it has been been tragic, but as it will be seen, many of these deaths would have been entirely preventable were it not for reckless incompetence on the part of Democratic state governors like Andrew Cuomo who, through direct or indirect action, enabled the virus into nursing homes where it could run amok amongst the most vulnerable and most helpless. (This is all starting to come out, BTW, and “blue state” governors like Cuomo, California’s Gavin Newsom, and New Jersey’s Phil Murphy are going to have to account for their actions.)

Even now, you have Democratic governor-led states like California arresting people on the beach and threatening to hunt down persons reported by snitches – talk about your “Russia collusion”! Can we all finally agree that when it comes to personal freedoms Democratic governors are nothing but tin-pot dictators running their states like the socialists and totalitarians they’ve aspired to be for so long?

…And does anyone honestly believe anything the CDC says after their abysmal performance performance during this crisis? These people were incompetent when their expertise and competence were needed the most. But that’s the federal government for you.

I’ll tell you this – and I’m making the safe assumption (at least in my mind) that the private sector knows a helluva lot more about how best to open up their businesses safely and gradually, and that in less than two months’ time you’ll have outright war between “blue state” business owners looking at the freedom their “red state” cohorts have been given as a result of the competence and wisdom of their Republican governors. Then all hell will start breaking loose.

Of course, if and when this happens, President Trump and his administration will still get zero credit for their actions and responses during February, March, and April while the Democrats (primarily led by Nancy “Antoinette” Pelosi and her cohorts) will in retrospect look like the cowardly incompetents they have been. There ought to be a price paid here, both in the hysterics pushed by the mainstream media in the worst possible way while ignoring the courage and sacrifices made by the American people. You certainly won’t hear anything like that from the sniveling, cowering snowflakes at CNN, MSNBC, NPR, the mainstream news networks, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and the increasingly-moronic Never-Trumpers, but average folks out there have a funny way of knowing what is bullshit and what isn’t – the reprehensible performance of the White House press corps during this crisis and social media have taken care of that.

There hasn’t been since the Civil War a nation so divided: one in which people live their lives in absolute, numbing fear of the loss of one life due to the taking of any risk of any kind – folks who have lost all sense of proportion; the other who sees the reality of where we are from where we’ve come and the bigger threat to their personal freedoms posed by government, big tech, and the national and local media – you know, the adults in the room. And by the time August and September come around, the group that has believed all the hype and hysteria pushed by the mainstream media and incompetent tin-pot Democratic dictators will have to make their minds up as to who was right and whose lives and livelihoods have been irreparably harmed over petty politics and the theory that you never let a good crisis go to waste. As Conrad Black writes in the American Spectator:

Despite all the unctuous asseverations that nothing will be the same again and that this is a human crisis that must unite the country, it is mainly political and rather tawdry politics at that. The anti-Trump media whipped up a state of frenzy and panic with no real evidence of the medical danger, initially to set the president up for responding inadequately. When he instead responded very effectively, they shifted course and without commending him on the lockdown, said that because he hadn’t developed testing capabilities quickly enough, the lockdown must be long enough to give the Democrats a chance of winning the election. (An economic depression on the scale of some plague from the Old Testament is all that could put Joe Biden into the White House.)

In fact, testing only establishes whether a person has, or has had, the coronavirus up to the time of testing. It is no magic bullet, but it has enabled extensive research that permits us to estimate the scale of this problem. Extensive recent testing indicates that in the “hot spot” of New York, more than 20 percent of New Yorkers have had the coronavirus, but fewer than half of those realized it.

There will always be those who will not allow anything done or said by President Trump to be given any credit, but I have a feeling that there are a lot of others who will come to see that the President and his administration were dealt a bad hand by Communist China and through no fault of his own, but did the best they could in response to it. One thing’s for sure: the American people aren’t going to forget what the Chinese, the WHO, Big Tech, and their accomplices in both the Democratic Party and the mainstream media have done to their lives. Nothing will ever be the same.

To that end, This is a must-watch video. It got taken down by YouTube, but if you want to know the thoughts of real doctors who have been on the front lines of this pandemic. For reasons unknown YouTube took it down (hmmm…I wonder what their agenda is?) so I encourage you to share it with your friends. You’ll be doing them a huge favor in helping to tamp down all the hysteria being shoved down your throats by our collective throats by the mainstream media, whose only interest is to extend this madness and keep the economy closed enough in time for November’s presidential election.

Hat tip to Instapundit and Powerline blog for a number of these links!

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 02:56 | Comments (0)
April 28, 2020

…to quote this deep track from The Beach Boys’ Friends album from 1968.

Jimmy Buffett’s “I Have Found Me A Home”, with it’s opening lines “The days drift by, they don’t have names…” pretty much describes this transitional period for someone who was over-employed and someone now not employed. While the days haven’t yet fallen into any kind of predetermined rhythm things are starting to take shape.

So much of life here in the Valley of the Sun is dictated by our two seasons. During the “not” season, all bets are off – you can come and go as you please and do whatever you feel like doing. Now that we’re in the “hot” season, the range of outdoor activities becomes far limited since, by the time noon arrives the sun is already starting to beat down on everything with a merciless pity, and you have to watch your exposure. One of these days the gyms will open back up and I’ll be able to get back to doing some of the things I used to do (and not having a job will certainly make the gym experience far more enjoyable since I’ll be able to go off-hours!), but for now I’ll simply be content to try and get out early enough for a bike ride or to work on my golf game.

But that would mean not being able to sleep in.

Ahhh…sleeping in. One of the true joys of the unemployed and/or early retired. Increasingly I’m finding it hard to believe I did what I did as a normal routine for so long: the 6:20 AM alarm to get the coffee going and the morning bathroom break before hitting the ground running – and I do mean running – with the 7 AM call that more often than not follow right up to my noon. It wasn’t so bad when the days got long on both ends and there was light, but during October-March those early calls were all done while it was still dark outside. But I had trained myself to be able to flip the switch on and off like some electrical appliance, so that what’s I did as a norm.

These days? Well, it’s all so …different.

The alarm now goes off every day at 7:30 AM so I can get up and feed Peach the rabbit his morning snack (dried pineapple chunks, nibble rings, pinch of oatmeal). On weekdays I’ll turn the coffee on for Tracey, check what the morning looks like out the pack patio door, and prepare Peach his breakfast (romaine leaf, few sprigs of parsley or Italian parsley, slice of banana), then wish Tracey a good workday and head back to bed to sleep as long as my body wants.

Some days I’m awake at 9:30, others, like today, could be as late as 10:30. After my bathroom break, it’s out to the kitchen where I’ll grab my watering can and, looking like Ray Liotta in that scene at the end of “Goodfellas” where he walks out the front door in bathrobe and bare feet to grab his morning paper like (in his words, “a schnook”), I stroll out front in shorts and t-shirt to replenish the water in the bird bath and water anything else that might warrant a splash.

Then it’s over to the coffee maker where I pour myself a cup, then over to the home office (not my old work office – that’s been cleaned out and turned into a spare room) where, over a couple of cups of coffee with Peach right by his side of the fence behind me, I’ll check the morning news and various Twitter feeds I subscribe to, give him a scratch or two from time to time.

That gets me to lunch time, where I’ll have a bowl of cereal or a sandwich while considering what to do with the rest of my day.

Right now I’m trying to help my sister-in-law Tammy find a new apartment (she has to vacate her existing living space by the end of October), so I might start checking out housing options, or I might peruse my LinkedIn job notifications. I don’t take these too seriously – it would have to be the absolute friggin’ best opportunity that would allow me to work from home in order for me to even consider it. I’d always said during my prior gig that, when it was all over I would never work in a real business office setting ever again, and unless things were to drastically change in ways I can’t even begin to imagine, there will be no going back. Could I work in IT again? Possible, but it’s not something I’d even begin to consider unless I could work from home most days, and even then, it would have to be a really sweet deal.

As Tracey has told me any number of times, I’ve paid my dues; it’s now time to unplug.

But so much easier said than done. I still feel a bit like (to quote the late, great George Harrison), “not so much of a man than a fish on the sand”. It will come – I have to believe it will change at some time – but right now I feel like I should be doing more than just getting astronomic (at least for me) severance pay every two weeks for doing absolutely nothing. Instead, after lunch I’ll pick out a chore, or chores, to do for a couple of hours.

By, say, three o’clock, I might lay down for a half hour or so. Then, a return to the computer to start looking at legitimately thinkable opportunities for work – part-time, no more than 24 hours a week. If I find something, I’ll draft a cover letter and submit my resume through their website. Right now this just involves stores like Leslie’s (pools), Total Wine and More, and the UPS Store. Nothing I appear to be qualified for, mind you: I find most job descriptions – even the most basic form of retail – require applicants to have 1-2 years of “applicable” real-world experience, as if they’re hiring for nuclear physicists or personal injury law firms. Gimme a friggin’ break.

…I’m sure they do it to keep the dorks and the losers out (I know that because I’ve written job descriptions in my former life), but there’s nothing in these jobs that a seasoned veteran like yours truly couldn’t pick up in day’s worth of time. I’m no dope and prefer not to be treated like one, but that’s the way it is these days. No “real life experience”, completely unemployable. Someone on the outside of employment fence looking in. Just like a Ray Liotta-esque kind of schnook. But that’s OK – I’m in no hurry to do anything right now. As Tracey says, I’ll know it when I feel the itch to get back into the game, get back to work. I trust she’s right.

But I digress.

At five o’clock the computer gets a break. I give Peach his afternoon snack (a few strips of dried apple, a few more nibble rings) then go in to watch Tucker Carlson. I like Tucker – sometimes he’s a little bit over the top but that’s OK, so am I. If it’s not Monday or Tuesday (my alcohol-free days) I’ll make myself a cocktail or pour myself a glass of wine and watch Tucker rail about the social and political ills of the day while making supper in preparation for Tracey’s return. We’ll have supper together, then, with the heat of the day receding I’ll go out for a brisk walk around the neighborhood. Dusk is my favorite time of the day, so while Tracey watches TV I might go out on the back patio with a glass of wine and listen to the birds while watching the evening come in. It’s my favorite time of the day.

[Ed. note: Starting, oh, around next weekend or shortly after that, with the pool in swimmable form, I expect any of the activities mentioned either above or below to be punctuated with a swim; a luxury that will be available right up until the beginning of October. I’m looking forward to that.]

After that I’ll head back into the office to check the same websites and Twitter feeds I did earlier in the day. I might do a blog post or do some reading (presently, Laurence Shames “Florida Straits”), take a soak in the tub, or go out on the back patio for a nitecap. I’ll clean Peach’s cage area and give him his late-night snack (small piece of kale or a few sprigs of cilantro) and call it a day. No going into the old office to check e-mails and load up for the next day as I used to do for years – those days are over. If Tracey goes to bed early I might stay up and do some late-night reading with the back patio door open, the night air and it’s sounds filling the living room. It’s best when there’s a soft breeze with the sound of wind chimes tinkling.

And then it’s off to bed.

I’m waiting for myself to start getting restless, but that time is not now. Right now, I’m pretty content to refill my coffee cup and give Peach another scratch.

You know, busy doin’ nothing.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 12:29 | Comments (0)
April 27, 2020

Joe Dan Gorman’s “Intellectual Froglegs” is everything you need to watch today.

Screw the models – the data sucks.

Screw the experts – they’ve never been right, and they have never been held accountable.

We’ve all been hoodwinked, we’re a bunch of pussies led by the nose by a bunch of scaredy-cat “experts”.

The media sucks. As Joe Dan so accurately says, “The virus is the media, and the media is the virus.”

Screw the media. Grab your life, it belongs to you.

Love life.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 01:12 | Comments (0)
April 25, 2020

On Monday it will be a month since I was told I was being laid off. One month. Today, it seems like it was like three months ago, to the point where I’m having difficulty remembering what I was doing for a living less than a month ago. It almost seems like a dream. Every day that goes by I’m feeling less and less inclined to hop back on board the full-time employment train. Oh, I’m still planting seeds out there (I’m actually going to apply for a full-time project manager job on Monday), but it’s primarily so I can get my formal, “professional IT” cover letter in a good state for future opportunities if I were to ever truly decide to go back to the meat grinder.

There’s actually been a lot to do this past week – I’ve been helping my sister-in-law Tammy find a new apartment, and the Tiki Bar deck looks really nice now that it has been re-stained and resealed. We’ve officially entered the door into summer where we’ll be in the triple digits pretty much every day now until October, so there will be a halt on further outdoor projects, but there’s enough to keep me busy with indoor chores.

And, of course, there will be job-hunting, although I’m being pretty picky right now as far as part-time work goes. There are elderly care-giver services I’m still looking into as well as the UPS Store, Lowe’s and Total Wine and More (imagine working around alcohol for 2-3 days a week!). These are all good excuses for working on cover letters and seeing what’s out there, but right now I think I’ll be using May as a transitional month and a month for getting back into shape. I have several 3-mile walking courses mapped out, and I’ll be planning on doing my Eades diet sometime during the month. I’ve thought about working on my golf game, but I have to admit that from the way things are currently looking back in Massachusetts – most especially my plans to stay in the guesthouse at my dad’s retirement community during Goodboys week (the third week in July) go – I’m leaning heavily towards backing out of this year’s festivities. It’s just not worth the hassle.

The one thing I have been doing is watching the President’s daily Coronavirus task force press conferences, and I’m absolutely horrified at the ignorance and the reprehensible performance of the White House press corp. For the life of me, I don’t know why the President even bothers with these folks. You see his Task Force members putting their best efforts forward, and all these so-called “journalists” want to do is ask “gotcha” questions of the President and act as if we’re all going to die. Any reasonable person (and by that I mean anyone who doesn’t get their information from the major news networks or the clowns at CNN and MSNBC) can see the Task Force has a good handle on what’s going on out there, but the media clowns are fully invested in trying to drag the hysteria as long as they can as a way to damage the President’s re-election chances in November. They truly are the enemy of the people.

As various states begin to open up expect to see more stories like this. This whole Coronavirus has been hyped from the very beginning. Look, people have died, and most of them because of pre-existent, reckless actions on the part of Democratic-run states whose public health organizations were completely unprepared. But as more testing is done and it is found that not only has the Coronavirus been around in the USA longer than we previously thought, but it is also far less deadly than originally thought. The models were not just wrong, but hideously wrong – to the point where we have closed down our entire economy for something no more deadly than a bad flu season. And who among the so-called “experts” is going to take responsibility for that? Time to stop the bullshit and allow this country to do what it does best.

Me? I’m just waiting for the final show to drop on “Slo’ Joe” Biden. Up to now, it’s just been the dude’s obvious lack of mental acuity, but the Tara Reade accusation is now starting to gain momentum to the point where you’re starting to see more Twitter posts like this. The Democrats know they’re in deep shit with Biden – they have to know Trump will absolutely have him for lunch were they ever to debate – so expect more and more calls for Biden to step aside for someone younger and mentally more with it.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 21:26 | Comments (0)
April 21, 2020

OK, I’ll admit it – I’m going nuts. I’m less than three weeks into my imposed “early retirement” and I’m ready to climb the walls. I mean, how much can one actually do in their spare time when spare time is all you have?

I wanted to clear out my old work office and move Peach the rabbit to his new digs in our “home office”. Done.

I wanted to rearrange the laundry room cabinet. That took all of 1 1/2 hours.

I wanted to clean out my bathroom vanity and create a real First Aid kit for the house. Another 1 1/2 hours.

I’ve been wanting to re-stain the Tiki Bar deck – that will be completed by Thursday noon.

I need to get started on the taxes and will do so starting next week. But that’s hardly what I would call a chore.

In between all that, I’ve been putting out feelers for jobs without really knowing what – if anything – I want to do at this point. I’ve still got another four months of severance checks coming in that I’ve already figured are the equivalent of me being paid normally through early November. Which is great – I’m one of the lucky ones. But I can’t just sit around the house. I don’t watch TV (although, I’ll admit, the idea of binge-watching “Magnum P.I.” or “Monk” has begun to cross my mind!)

You see the problem here is, I’m a doer. I’m not really one to sit on the sidelines and watch the world go round. But there’s also something inside me that says I need to have a hard, honest look at my situation and decompress before honestly assessing what I want to do from here. Sure, I created my LinkedIn profile and created a consulting LLC in case I want to get back into Healthcare IT, but just the thought of it creates an internal recoil that advises me against it.

…actually, everything I think about doing right now in terms of work and finding a job creates a recoil. It’s almost as if my internal psyche is advising that I need to decompress. But what if decompressing is something I don’t know how to do or am not very good at?

Normally around this time of year I think about listening to surf music and working on my golf game in anticipation of Goodboys weekend in July. But there’s no desire on either count this year – I don’t feel like listening to surf music, and there’s little interest in gearing up for this year’s installment (it would be my last one, anyways).

I don’t want this to make it sound like I’m feeling sorry for myself – I certainly am not, and I know there are a lot of folks out there in far worse shape than I am. There are folks losing their lives and their livelihoods (and living in fear of doing so) because of the economic downturn resulting from all these Coronavirus lockdowns. All I’m admitting, I guess, is that, even though my life was being run through the meat-grinder for the last three years, there was an adrenaline rush to it, a feeling of being engaged and being a part of the game. That has suddenly been taken away from me and I’m having a hard time adjusting to it. One can only do so many walks and find chores to do to occupy one’s day!

I’ll get over it, I have no doubt. It’s just that I need to use this interim period between “what was” and “what is” in a more “island time” fashion.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 19:32 | Comments (0)

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