Wednesday, November 30, 2011


This is going to start as a post about posting, and then devolve into a rant. I just made it today, and if I finish typing in the next 8 minutes, this will have a 30th date stamp.
The following will mean nothing to the 2 or three people who read this mess, or, maybe someone will fall into it and realize who I am and why I am so pissed off.
I thoroughly dislike people who spread lies about other people. And I dislike even more those people who buy the lies without question and attack someone, by name, whom they wouldn't know to trip over.
Along with those people, I am sick of the enablers, those who have the power to stop things yet refuse to do so. Therefore, I am removing my self from the equation.
I used to be a quitter, I used to run from everything, so this is killing me. There is a point where stepping away is the only course of action though, the only way to remain sane. If those in power are going to allow the crap to continue unabated, why should I bother? Why should anyone bother to do the right thing? Seriously? For the pride of doing the right thing? When all that gets you is grief? Forget it, no more. I'll do the right thing silently, out of the limelight, away from them all. They can have the insanity, they've earned it.

Oh, and unions suck.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Last week I wrote a post for an authors blog, J.R. Wagner about Penguin pulling e-books from libraries.
I didn't even know that e-books were available in libraries till I saw the article, but I did some quick searching and found out that Penguin was concerned about piracy. It seems that since then, the older books are back in the libraries but the new Penguin releases are not. This whole kerfuffle seems to have started when the service Penguin uses (OverDrive) added a  Kindle availability, which is an Amazon product, and Amazon is hurting the publishing industry by continuing to sell real books at a loss to get customers. I stand by my original agreement with Penguin on this matter, if they are concerned, I am concerned (which is why I do not post more poems on FaceBook, I have read the terms of service), and I understand that Penguin is in the business to make money, not to give away free books. 
With the re-evaluation Penguin is not giving in, but conceding that the abrupt pull out hurt readers. According to the linked article, the lack of fire-wall protection in the Kindle could allow the books loaned to be copied and sent to anyone, anywhere. Again, Penguin is not in business to give away books. The company will continue to donate books to libraries for regular loans, but is sticking to the security concern.
How true that is remains to be seen, however, as the fight between Amazon and Penguin (Amazon now wants to be a publisher as well as a retailer, stealing authors from...hold on...Penguin) continues to rage. Could this all be a simple case of one publisher not wanting to donate product to another publisher? I imagine that is part of it, but, the piracy angle can not be overlooked. 
I'll try to keep an eye on this, maybe more posts in the future about the whole publishing mess, including SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act winding its way through Congress.

Monday, November 28, 2011


Funny, the title of this blog is "Stones and words and words and stones" and I can not remember ever writing about stone.
So, today I was headed out to dabble in my favorite hobby, my other creative outlet, and realized I had no cement. I had sand, it's been riding around in the truck for weeks, but the half bag of portland was still in the garage where I hastily shoved it when it began to rain a week or three ago. This means a trip to the Depot, where I grabbed a bag of masonry cement, a new mixing tub (my old one has holes and is on another job), and a new tool box saw 'cause I needed it.
To the job, which is a mix of wonderfulness. An Eagle Scout project on a 150 year old wall at a church! I arrive, grab the iPod, and head to the back of the truck to mix mortar. Three to one, if anyone ever needs to mix mortar, three sand to one cement, no matter the type, and you will be fine. If you want stronger, less sand. Masonry cements have lime premixed, so it is much more workable than portland and sand. For laying stone, use concrete sand, especially on old wall repairs.
Mortar mixed I head to the passenger side of the truck to grab my tool bag. #$&U#@. Wrong bag. No masonry for paver patios and sidewalks (a brick hammer), and a bunch of 12 inch spikes, but no trowels or pointing tools. This is a problem.
Then I realized that all those tools might not have been used when this particular wall was originally built, so I winged it! Digging in my truck I found a short ice scraper, which I used as a trowel and a clean wooden paint stirrer that worked fine as a flat slicker.
It all worked out well,  but I sure need to get my head around the things I need to take with me in the morning!

Sunday, November 27, 2011


I started this blog to discuss politics, oh so many years ago, and have done so intermittently. I tried late last year to keep everything local, and that worked for a week or two, but there just isn't enough to blog about in Chester County, not enough for me to write about anyway. So I slid back out nationally and internationally, writing about the Religion of Peace™, or, the AGW insanity (not insane that the planet may be warming, insane that measly humans are causing the warming).

I was thinking about writing more on the OWS crowd than I have written on Facebook, but so much has already been said it would be redundant, the same goes for the Republican primary fiasco. If democrats had any balls they would be mounting an attack on Obama for 2012, he is slated to be thoroughly trounced next November, Jimmy Carter #2, only worse!

I do want to mention the Iran nuclear weapons chase, something that I think I wrote about many years ago, something that democrats have denied for years, that one useful idiot was given the Nobel Peace Prize for denying. I still do not understand how a simple guy from Pennsylvania can see that Iran is pursuing a nuclear bomb, but the international community still tries to deny it…I just do not get it. Oh, I know that it is the left side of the spectrum that denies it, but that makes even less sense to me. It is the left side of the spectrum that is going to be killed when the Islamic Fascists take over (well, after they kill all of the American conservatives who will never surrender). Remember that there are no gays in Iran and the Holocaust never happened. Iran is going to explode, very soon, right after Syria, or, maybe, right before.

That brings us to the Arab Spring, so touted by so many, all of whom seem to be idealistic fools now. Others, including myself, were counseling caution, calling for patience, arguing that this wasn't going to be the wonderful renaissance that the left wing/anarchist/hacktivists wanted. I, and others, warned that the Muslim Brotherhood was going to take over Egypt, led by the aforementioned Peace Prize winner, and that is what is happening now. I, and others, warned that thousands would die in Libya and Syria, and that is happening. I, and others, warned that the end result would be the United States, under the leadership of President Obama, would come out of this looking weaker, and we were right. Just once I would like to be wrong about these things, but, human nature NEVER changes. People want strong leaders, but strong leaders are rare. Weak leaders, however, are a dime-a-dozen, and weak leaders only want power. When a weak leader gets that power, they normally wield it ruthlessly, and, never let go.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Poetry Break

One of the things I want to do now that I am back to the blog is comment on a wonderful book of poetry that was given to me as a gift. For lack of energy and time I will simply link here: The poet is Rumi, the year is anywhere beteen 1240 and 1260 or so, and the translation is done by Colman Barks, and the poems are life. Sure, they are love, friendship, and spiritual awakening, but if that isn't life, I don't know what is.

What I have been doing is reading slowly and marking things that pique my interest. I noticed the other day I have marked over 20 pages and don't want to forget why I marked them so I am going discuss a poem when I am short ideas or just because I like poems.

In Bowls of Food the lines "Those who work at a bakery do not know the taste of bread/like the hungry beggars do" made me think of a phrase that bounces around my head all the time: The cobbler's children never have new shoes.

In my home, I am always afraid that I will start a patio/wall/walk project and never finish it (like 'unfinished wall'), and become like the cobbler. And even while I think that I know in my heart that is not the point. The point is not seeing what is right in front of you, not loving what is closest to you. Or, in keeping with Rumi, not recognizing the way God touches everything every day (God or Shams, Rumi's muse). We shouldn't let others see the things we do not, we should help others see the beauty that is both within and around us. So much we take for granted would be desired by others, and that desire is what Rumi means by the beggars; they appreciate the bread more than the baker both because they get less to eat AND they do not see it as a burden.

Wow…too many threads there, confusion stemming from exhaustion, but both things in that last sentence are true, and even more. Go to the link above, the poem in question is on page 48. Don't stop there though, read a few more, the writing of Rumi is very eye opening!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Am I really back?

So, taking advice from a friend, I am setting a minimum goal of one blog post per day. I would love to also write elsewhere, so I am hoping that forcing a blog post will put me in the mood to pick up one of the three note-books, or, open one of the two or three word documents currently under construction. Posting about posting does not count, much like when I was journaling and would write an entry about writing an entry…hmm, where is that journal anyway?

Inheritance. Paolini came very close to making a very big mistake, even bigger than the two he actually did make. I won't play spoiler on the almost, but the first mistake was not putting the pen down when it was time to put the pen down. It doesn't take 100 pages to wrap up a story, especially the way that one was wrapped up. Secondly, it's not like they were Leia and Luke…. Okay, he left it open for the future of the riders, to be told from a number of directions, and he now has enough characters to pretend he is David Eddings, but are those characters deep enough to build on? The only one I even got a sense for was Arya, even Eragon was still a tad shallow right to the end.

The video game feel from book three is gone, thankfully, showing a maturity in the author, but once he stopped 'leveling up' the characters he also stopped building them.

Oh, and evil is evil, it really is that simple Mr. Paolini, hopefully you will remember that when we next encounter Dragons and Riders.