Sunday, July 20, 2008

Movies, Movies, Movies July 2008

This is a movie review! Those of you who are easily offended need not read this. May contain spoilers.

Hancock. I really enjoyed this movie. All I knew was what I had seen in the trailers except for an interview with Charlize Theron and Jason Bateman. Big movie plug but I didn't watch much of it. Liked the humor and effects. The movie moved pretty good so I never had a chance to process much or get bored. The actual relationship between Will and Charlize's characters surprised me. And I really thought someone was going to die badly and I'd be upset. I liked it and recommended it.

Get Smart. Seen it twice. Good effects. and a lot of that thing where they reference the old show. I like Masi Oki and it took awhile to realize his name was Bruce Lee. Also I like Dwayne Johnson as he is becoming a great actor. Often, people who come from sports have a hard time breaking free of their stereotype. Alex Carras did it. "Let me see the eyebrow again, Rock!" I think Steve Carell is becoming a great actor too. Is this the first time Caan and Arkin have made a movie together since Freebie and the Bean? Maybe there will be a sequel with a bigger part for agent 13 (Bill Murray) and Hymie (Patrick Warburton). I'm a big fan of Patrick's due to the vocal subtleties he used in "The Emporer's New Grove". Gush Gush, I just like movies.

We had no pay channels on our Dish but were recording so many movies from pay-per-view that just getting Cinemax will save us money.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Stop using these phrases.

Don't you hate it when some clever phrase becomes popular. and everybody starts using it. Is this a form of shorthand communication that by using the phrase everyone knows what you mean without you having to be eloquent enough to be original?

current phrases I don't want to here anymore:
"at the pump" as in "We're feeling it at the pump"
"on the ground" a military operations expression but used to mean where the action is happening.
"at the end of the day" who you really are. I really hate this one.

This is my story and I'm sticking to it!

Friday, July 11, 2008

It's Windy!

We're having a bit of wind today. The weather service posted a wind advisory to last until 7:00pm. At seven they updated it to 9:00pm. It's nine now and it doesn't look like it's done. 25mph at this time. The temp has dropped from the high 70s to below 60 in a couple of hours. Out here in ND we have shelter belts. This is a man-made thing. Lewis and Clarke just saw open prarie when they were here, but the farmers plant rows of trees to break up the wind so the crops can grow. I had to bring in the plants from the porch as they were blowing around. We planted a bunch of trees and shrubs last month. All of the Lilacs are doing great. The Nanking Cherry bushes are starting the get leaves. Unfortunatly, the Sand Cherries and the Hackberries look like they didn't make it. I also planted three Golden Currants and one is doing okay I think. The veggie garden is going nuts and we have lots of stuff coming up. Fun.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Out On A Limb

I'm just sitting here doing some housework and catching up on my O'Reilly Factors. I've watched a couple of installments today, but one segment just hit me pretty hard. I think this is important. Let me set things up a bit to diffuse the obvious comments that really are not relavent. Bill O was not hosting the show I was watching. John Casek was. Also the comments that I'm addressing were not made by the host.

Jazz singer Rene Marie was asked to sing the national anthem at this function in Denver. When she got up to sing, she sang a different song (same tune) having to do with black struggles. There has been some uproar in Denver over this. One of the guests on the Factor was Dr. Lamont Hill. His position over this is that it was no big deal and used the argument that if she had sung "God Bless America" it would have been the same thing - she didn't sing what she was supposed to sing. One of thre main arguments was that the song she sang, instead of uplifing America pointed the finger of oppression at it.

Here's my problem. First, if she didn't feel comfortable singing an American song as an American, she should have turned it down. Second, Dr. Hill did what he always does and that is to blather on about how oppressed blacks have always been in this country and we should just feel guilty and let them do everything they want, including giving them the best china of the table.

I've had it! Wrongs have been done and now the system is pretty equitable. Except blacks are always trying to use our past against us to stack the odds in their favor. I'm not wealthy and have my own share of struggles. I don't think of blacks, natives, asians, or anyone else as being inferior to me on the basis of their race. But I find it really hard to accept a black person as just another human being (colorless) while being constantly reminded of things done that no one in his family was around to experience.

This singer once told a crowd that as a black woman she has never really felt like an American. And Dr. Hill just keeps on defending this type of behavior and never sees that black people can be wrong too. He always argues on the side of the black in the conversation. He defended Rev. Wright, Al Sharpton, and many others no matter how divisive or outrageous their actions or words. And he is always ready to condemn whites in the reverse. He's just a yes-man for the African community and as such, I think he does a lot more harm than good.

I just get tired of hearing how bad the African-Americans have had it and still have it today, when most of their present problems such as crime and broken families are brought on themselves.

I do applaud Bill Cosby, Tyler Perry, and Shelby Steele who are in the fight to help African-Americans take responsibility for their own lives.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The next day

We had a great time yesterday. We had a some friends out in the evening for supper and fireworks. Russ and Helen brought some and we had some too. It was really fun and we managed to not burn down the house. The ladies posed for pictures on Laurie's bike. It was just fun. The hayfields were full of fireflies and they looked like they were having a lot more fun than the poor horses. Today we had church. We had our service outside in the church's side yard. It was great. Afterwards we had a fellowship potluck with burgers and hot dog. It's been a wonderful week. It's going to be hard returning to work on Tuesday. Oh Well....

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Happy Birthday America!!

My boys used to go to these antique tractor shows and ride like this with their Gramps.
The V.F.W. Main float.
Check out what else the Klementruds building is being used for!
Awesome construct of the local Catholic Church.

Yes, I'm a little behind. I intend to post 31 posts this month. Maybe a little ambitious but hey! Yesterday was the Fourth, and we had a busy day. Laurie worked an overnight so she didn't get home until 6 or 7 am. We got ready and left for Devils Lake. It is Devils Lake's 125 Anniversary so this year's parade was special. Sporting our matching "Pure American" T-shirts and our Gold star pins, We rode in the parade representing Gold Star Parents. The Local VFW Ladie's Auxillary handles such related activities. It was pretty emotional for us, more than we thought it would be. Many people clapped just because the VFW is a supporter of our troops, but we got a lot of applause and "Thank You"s because of Jeremiah's service. It was really nice. Here are some photos from the parade, and if I get some of us I'll post them.
Afterwards, we went home for a bit and then went back to a friend's farm out in Brinsmade for a potluck, fellowship, and fireworks. I got a chance to visit with a lot of friends I haven't seen for a while. What a great day!

Gold Star Mothers/Parents

We belong to one of those groups that no one really wants to be in. We are Gold Star Parents. Below is an article about it.

By: Angie Magruder
In May 1918 President Wilson approved the suggestion of the Women's Committee of National Defenses. It recommended that American women should wear a black band on the upper left arm, adorned with a gold star. Each star representing a family member who had given his or her life for their country. This was suggested in lieu of conventional mourning attire.
The "star" tradition began in WW I when white Service Flags were displayed from homes, business, schools and churches to indicate, by the use of a blue star, each active service member in the U.S. Military. A gold star stitched over a blue star showed the nation those who had given their lives for their country and the devotion and pride of those left behind. This tradition continued through WW II.
In his Letter to the Women's Committee by Pres. Wilson the term "Gold Star Mother" was first used. The Gold Stars not only signified the supreme sacrifice made by the deceased, but intended to give their family a measure of pride and consolation. June 4th, 1928 was the day a group of 25 mothers in Wn DC made plans to begin a national organization to be known as American Gold Star Mothers, Inc. It was to be a nonpolitical, nondenominational and nonprofit organization. Incorporated on Jan 5, 1929, it had 65 charter members from all areas of the U.S. As recently as June 12, 1984, the ninety-eighth U.S. Congress granted the GSM, Inc. a Federal Charter. A list of purposes and provisions are listed, to include general promotion of peace and good will in: assisting veterans and their dependents in the presentation of claims to the V.A.; perpetuating the memory of those whose lives were sacrificed; giving lessons of patriotism, love of country and respect for the country's flag to local communities and to extend assistance to all GSM. This organization was and is open to all mothers of fallen soldiers of all wars as well as those who have died a service-related death.
Presently GSM groups give support to their local veteran's hospitals in many ways and help with and attend veteran's ceremonies. They have their own license plate available, monthly meetings, annual conventions, and are eligible to live at the group's complex, American Gold Star Manor in Long Beach, CA. The last Sunday of September has officially been declared GSM day. Upon the death of a son or daughter, the U. S. Gov't provides the mother (and often the other family members) a small gold-star pin.
Betty Spengler, a resident at The Fairfax in Alexandria, lost her son in Viet Nam. She said , "You always have your memories that are there--especially during the Holidays."
My mother-in-law, Julia Magruder, also a GSM lost her youngest son in Vietnam while all three of her sons were serving. She shared the following: "My receiving the gold star was a satisfying and proud remembrance of the son it stood for. The smallness of the pin creates a very personal relationship when worn. It signifies so much."

For more information you can go to:

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

I am so thankful for Liberals. I have come to realize that they are a neccesary facet of our culture. Here's why. Conservatism, in my opinion, is the correct standard for a society. The basic tenents of hard work, faith, Government non-interference in citizen's lives, Government sponsored protection of our way of life, leads to a stronger society. However, because we are people, we go astray. When society devolves to selfishness or loses it's focus on the things that matter, then the Liberals come in and start a "cultural revolution". In the 60's because bigotry and a focus on a rather plastic lifestyle had become the way things were, a group of people dropped-out (but were never silent) and gave the country a good hard look at the direction it was going. It got straightened out and we moved on. twenty years later, it happened again. Not so much because the cold war was a wrong, or our doing, but because the average person was more focused on his own life and getting ahead. A lot of needs in the country and the world needed addressing but we just wanted to watch Miami Vice and dance. The punk movement brought about needed social awareness and brought us back to center. Now, it's starting to happen again and the Liberals are causing people to become interested and involved. The only problem I have with all this is that once the Liberals get us centered, they want to keep moving left and jump down the rabbit hole towards socialism. What should happen is we wake up and cling to the ideas that we should be about and drop the ones that are selfish. Liberals want to throw out everything as though it's conservatism that's wrong and move towards a system that has never worked anywhere for very long. (aren't you glad I didn't say the baby with the bathwater?). This is my story and I'm sticking to it.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Devils Lake, ND celebrates 125 years

It's 125 years for Devils Lake, ND. The town was named for the large body of water to the south. The local natives called it Minnewaken or Spirit Lake. This is because the lake has a high alkaline level and every spring when it thaws it smells kinda like a huge compost heap. The natives thought this was the result of the spirits in the water awakening for spring. The white settlers (and Lewis and Clark) translated it as evil spirits or "devils" hence the name.

Okay, that's done. What I want to say, is that the local paper published a special edition and in it is a feature, "Do you remember these unforgettable faces?" many pictures of townspeople in an earlier time. But the first picture is my son Jeremiah. We are so pleased the folks at the Journal remembered and thought he should be in there.