Friday, December 31, 2010

So hot.

Just to pass the time

In my never ending struggle to make sure this blog never rises above mediocrity, I found some funny commercials for your viewing pleasure today.  I'm sure I'm the only one of the band of malcontents who has to work today. I'm only going to work till noon.  It's going to be a busy morning of watching South Park and eating poptarts.  Blueberry.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Plowing with spite.

Buzz's comments in my previous post reminded me of a story.  It again is about being a good neighbor.

The street I live on is all tract housing.  Duplexes (legal description is townhouse and it sounds so much more elegant). I told Buzz that I usually plow a lot of sidewalks when I have my four-wheeler running.  I like to do it and ever since I started wearing my snowmobile helmet and goggles, the only thing that ever gets cold is my toes.  I just drop the blade at one corner, push the snow into the street and then go to the next corner and do it again.  I only know a couple of my neighbors by name but I know more than a couple by sight and usually get a nice wave if someone is doing their driveway when I go by.

A couple of years ago I happened to be in Belgrade at lunch so I went to my little townhouse.  Had a sandwich watched some TV and probably took a 45 minute nap. It had snowed the day previous and I had done my plowing of sidewalks. Anyway, I jump in the grizwagon and head back to work. I live on the north end of the block. As I get to the south end, I see a little old lady who had just finsihed shoveling a path to her car. The driveways on both sides of her were neatly shovelled.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Good shoveling makes good neighbors.

It started snowing here about 2 PM.  A light snow.  It has been warm here the last three days. Over freezing.  When the front moved in and the temperature dropped the roads became slick fast. I drove through Bozeman on my way to my friend Markle's house. He lives about three miles north of Bozeman at the foot of the Bridger Mountains.  He invited me over for steaks and wine on Monday.  To celebrate Christmas and toast the New Year.  I have a long story about Markle (what were the odds?) but that's for another time. Anyway, we knew the front was "supposed" to be here but the weather guy here in Montana is usually a day or two off if he's close at all.  Not this time.

I pull into Markle's house. There is at least three inches on the ground. Weather dude is calling for 7 or 8.  We have dinner and a couple of glasses of wine. It's time for MRM to hit the road.  The weather is turning even more sour.  The grizwagon is in four-wheel drive.  Roads back to the interstate are somewhat sketchy but I'm in no hurry.  The wind is howling so bad that I meet a plow truck going the opposite way on the interstate and it blows the snow from his lane into mine for a second or two.  Traffic is slow butI know my house will be in the same spot I left it.

It's called "incrementalization"

Our federal government is attempting to pull off one of the largest land grabs in history. Using the Anitquities Act the environmental whackos want to have a wildlife corridor  from the Missouri River north to Canada.  I'll post more on this in the weeks to come but take a look at the map.  The blue lines indicate what the enviro-Nazi's envision as a "vast natural wilderness".  Buffalo, wolves, etc. It's the usual bullshit.  Problem is that over 1/2 the land in the corridor is privately held.  It's going to be a sticky situation.  Worst of all is that it will engulf the ranch I grew up on, many of the people I grew up with as well as my beloved Malta.  Stay tuned.

"Over the last four decades, federal land holding increased 6 percent.  29.6 percent of all land in America is owned by the federal government (671,759,297.7 total acres). Only 2.4 percent of federal land in the U.S. is used for military purposes, and more than 5.1 million acres of federal land are classified as 'vacant' with no definable purpose."- General Services Administration, April 2004 as publish in the Fall 2005 edition of Range magazine.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

MCW "Favorite Foreign Actress"

I hope everyone enjoyed their Christmas and or Hanuka.  I'm ready to kick off the New Year with a blog party at Boxer's place this Friday night.  Until then, we have the last MCW of 2010 to finish up.

You all know that Boxer is the creator of this meme.  Preferred clip length is around three minutes but it's not cast in stone.  When it's up on your blog, come here and let us all know. 

When I had favorite foreign actor as a theme way back in the long ago, more than one person said that it was a stretch to consider Michael J. Fox a foreigner, or as Aunty may refer to them a "ferrener" (not close aI know). 

This week I went with an actress that was actually from across the Atlantic to she is definately foreign.  So smart, funny and beautiful.  She'd have me wrapped around her finger until I left the earth.  She's gone by many names.  Sabrina, Eliza and Holly among others.  To me she is just the most beautiful woman I've ever laid eyes on.  I think the thing I admired most about Audrey Hepburn was the fact that she really seemed sincere and genuine in real life.  Like making movies was just this thing she did so that she could give back the world all the wonderful things it had given her.  I don't have a lot of respect for Hollywood but I remember being sad when I heard the announcement of her passing. 

Take a long look you current Hollywood starlets.  It would take far too many of you to count to match the pure beauty and elegance of this one women. Both on screen and off.  Happy MCW.

For a better great clip go here.  Embedding disabled.

Screwed up auto-post again.  Note to self: when you re-read it goes to draft if you don't tell it to auto post.  Got it? Got it!

Back to the salt mine.

This is the route I travelled this weekend. The blue line is the road to Malta. 42 miles from town it was 30 degrees on my truck thermometer. When I pulled into town, it was -1. The red line is the return trip. Drove to Big Sandy on Sunday afternoon to play cards with Skeets and his family. Played pinochle and crib till midnight. Drove the rest of the way home yesterday. Total distance is around 670 miles.

This is the view from my sister's place in New Jersey. I think she lives about 75 miles north of Buzz. That's a lot of snow I don't care who you are.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Random Thoughts #25 Christmas Version

Things that crossed my mind while wondering if there is a big difference between Kamchatka and Titos.  Moi and Boxer can weigh in on that.  Yes I know that Titos is better if you're drinking it straight but if you're throwing some cranberry in it go with the cheap stuff.

#1. I remember the first time Brother Bill and I found our Christmas gifts before Christmas.  We were playing hide-and-seek in the basement.  The back corner of the basement was a dark and dank place.  We wouldn't go in there in the daylight. To scared.  Bill was hiding and I was seeking. I counted to 100 or whatever and went looking. I took about three steps and Bill was there in front of me. "Come see what I found!"  There in the corner of the back of the basement where he knew I wouldn't come look for him was the GI Joe Training Center that we had asked for.  It was tough acting surprised that Christmas morning.

A favorite

My favorite Christmas song but only when it's sung by Nat King Cole.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Merry Christmas

To all of you who read the drivel, thank you so much for your wonderful comments and following what little I have to say.  I'm done posting till next week.  Heading to the homeland (weather permitting as it always is in Montana) but would like to let you all know how happy I am that you all read what I have to say. It's not much.  My best posts and comments come when I am driving and I forget most of them.

I enjoy blogging and wish I was filthy rich so I could do it full time.  My posts would be much more substantial, but hey, whatta ya gonna do? However, if anyone knows a rich woman with low standards now might be the time to introduce us. Just sayin.

Merry Christmas to you all. There is one sense I can gather from all of you and that is this: we are all cut from the same cloth. Our value systems are very much similar, we believe in the same things pretty much. There will be differences of opinion but they are shared intelligently and with respect and I appreciate it very much. 

There aren't very many times that I don't consider myself the smartest man in the room.   That's not meant to be egotistical. I've been blessed with being smart.  My dad was brilliant and my mother is far from dumb. Reading all of your posts and comments humbles me.  You are all highly intelligent and thoughtful people.  You post from your heart and your heads.  You make me think and re-think and that is good. Old Morris told me a long time ago "Kid, when you can't learn anymore you're of no use to anyone especially yourself."  Reading what you all have to say justifies his point.

The future is muddled to me for our great country ( the USA for you foreign followers, not to say your countries aren't great BTW) but I think with the power of the internet we will see it through.

I love my family.  I have the greatest circle of friends that any man could ever wish for.  I have a great job, a warm house and full belly every day. That makes me better than most.  For a boy from Malta who grew up with a little more than nothing, to have the life I have is truly a blessing.

Safe journeys to you who are travelling.  Whether or not you believe in Christ, celebrate this great day of giving and remember that the best way to go through life is truly the golden rule "treat others as you would have them treat you". The bounty you reap is unmeasurable, but all of you already know that.


PS I really do have an minor in English.  I know you can't tell it from what I have to say, but honestly, I HAVE an English minor.  Maybe it's not a good reflection on the English department of Montana State. Hey, it's and engineering/ag school. Whatta ya want?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

MCW Favorite Christmas Movie

Merry Christmas fellow bloggers.  Welcome to this week's edition of Movie Clip Wednesday.  This week's theme was quite easy to choose.  Remember how this works.  I give you a theme, you find a movie clip around three minutes long then drop by here and say that you're up and running and we'll all pop over and have a gander.  The magnificent Boxer started this a couple of week's or so ago, maybe longer, anyway we all have to keep it going.

So many good movies to choose from.  I'm not going to lie, I'm expecting a lot of It's a Wonderful Life and a lot of Christmas Vacation clips and that's fine with me.  It will be interesting to see how many blog jinx's there are this week. I went with A Christmas Story.  There  were a number of reasons but I think the biggest was it reminded me of growing up in Malta (wow, what were the odds of that?). Just everything about it, the clothes, having to take care of my brother on the way to school, the way the kids acted in class,  just all of it.  Too many good lines, too many things that happened that made me think of Ralph, Jim and St. Mary's.  The hats, the kid sticking his tongue on a flagpole.  I love this movie.

"the old man stood quivering with fury, stammering as he tried to come up with a crusher all he got out was.......... NOT A FINGER!!!" 

Here's a trailer for the movie "Rare Exports: A Christmale Tale".  Looks good.  A little different spin on Santa in this one.


Monday, December 20, 2010

Haiku Monday "Games"

We made up our own
In the basement or outside
Before Atari

Pinochle is one
Cribbage would be another
I'm proficient at

Because this was really, really important.

While our country fights a war against terrorism, a war I might add that liberals do not want us to win, it was a high priority to make sure that openly gay men were allowed to serve.  Unlike most liberals and definately unlike the chain smoking former coke addict President, I actually know people who have served in the military.  I know Korean vets,Vietnam vets, Desert Storm vets, vets from the current conflict and not one of them that I've asked has been in favor.  As a matter of fact, each person I've asked is adamantly opposed.  It's odd to me that with everything going on in the country and the world, that this was such a priority.  I can hardly wait for the lawsuits to come against the military when some twinkle toes gets his feelings hurt by a drill sargeant in basic.

Here's something to think about though.  If straight men are supposed to be "OK" with showering and serving with openly gay men, why can't we put women, straight men, and gays all together. If straight men are supposed to accept being in barracks with gays, shouldn't women have to shower, etc with straight men. Isn't that what "equality" really is?  Think of all the money it would save in operation costs. 

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Watching youtube with Ralph

So Ralph and I are on the phone (skype isn't working for Ralph) and I found this great video of the Cowboy Junkies singing Blue Moon.  I really like their take on this. Enjoy. By the way, no alcohol was consumed during this post. That's a lie. I'm enjoying a glass of Crown Cask 16 that my little sis gave me for Christmas. She's a doll.

After the jump, here are a couple of our favorites. I miss you Ralph. Tonight was fun but nothing compares to pulling a hundred CD's out of our vault and saying "how about this one?"

Friday, December 17, 2010

The classics never die.

In my never ending quest to bring you the best of the mundane, I came across this clip.  It's a montage of people saying "we're not in Kansas anymore" and it's really pretty entertaining.  Thanks to The Warming Glow for broadening my horizons.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

MCW "Most overrated movie"

Is it time for MCW already?  Wow.  In case anyone may be new here's how it works.  Over here at MRM headquarters a theme is picked and then you find a clip that matches said theme, around three minutes is about right, put it up on your blog and then come over here and tell everyone that you are "up" and ready to roll.  We'll come by and check it out.  Got it?

This week's theme is "Most Overrated Movie".  It's a theme chosen by Boxer, who used to host this little meme.  Remember those days, when the meme was fun and organized? Me too. Oh what the hell! It's surviving ain't it? 

This theme had sooooooooooo many choices.  "Unforgiven" and "Gladiator" immediately came to mind.  Anything with Ben Affleck, DeNiro or Pacino (excluding "The Godfather") Clooney or Keanu.  That's just for warmups.

There has been though, one movie that always stood out to me as being extremely overrated.  I couldn't understand why it was breaking every box office record, especially after I watched it.  The movie of course is "Titanic".  *insert "I already knew how it was going to end" joke here.  Why did I even go?  Why do you think, there was this woman you see and.....................................

Friday, December 10, 2010

How hard is to get a journalism degree?

I hate the media.  Make no mistakes about it.  If Katie Couric was on a plane with Keith Olberman and it went down, let's just say I'm not volunteering to join the search and rescue party. They tow the liberal line lock, stock and barrel and you need to look no further than the current "tax cut" bill as proof.

When this bill was passed over 8 years ago, it was, and has been since, protrayed as a tax cut "for the rich". Even though it was across the board.  I knew this.  Anyone with an IQ bigger than my average golf score knew this but in the press it was always a tax cut for the rich.  Fast forward to six months ago.  The tax policy passed by GWB with biparitisan support is set to change at years end and guess what?  We find out that EVERYONE'S taxes are going up and not by a little bit. Really? 

Here's more great journalism.  President Teleprompter campaigned on repealing this law.  I've heard over a dozen soundbites from the campaign trail about "repealing the Bush tax cuts."  Now, after the ass kicking the libtards took in November he is singing a different tune.  The exact opposite in fact.  We need to extend this program for "middle America". The press is not taking him to task for it.  They act like it never happened.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Haiku Thursday "Beverage"

It's refreshing
Cranberry and Coke
Roommate Will says refreshing
Chipper its good stuff.


Driving bulls to cows
Resevoir water was cold
Yes, I did drink it.

The best

If you want a glass
of Canada's finest
reach for Crown Royal

A hot summers day

Reading some comics
Brother Bill and Superman
Mom, some lemonade

High School

Cruising some back roads
Some Olympia triv time
It was the "water"

For some good haiku go visit the Troll's place.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Its warmer than it looks

Here are some photos I took at the playoff game last week. The battery in my camera died so I took these with my phone. Enjoy.  It was 10 degrees F at kickoff but did warm up to 12 degrees by the 3rd quarter.

This is before the end of the first half. I had to leave early to get the food out for the halftime festivities.  Double T and his crew got there early to put down the straw which really helped in keeping your feet warm.

This is not quite 5 minutes later.  Poor boy sandwiches, chicken gumbo, cold shrimp, cold cuts, cheese, beer, Crown, Alpines, Irish coffee.  What's your pleasure?

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

MCW Favorite Cop Movie

(Sorry for being late. Screwed up my autopost)

Okey Dokey.  Narrow theme, then a broad theme. I have good news though. In the spirit of the season, I'm going to name the theme for the next TWO MCW's.  Everyone is going to be really busy with all the stuff that goes on this time of year so here's your assignments.  The theme for 12/15 is "most overrated movie". This is a Boxer suggestion and it's a great one.  The theme for 12/22 is (drum roll please)  favorite Christmas Movie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. /standing ovation from the blogosphere ensues.

Here's how it works.  Each week I pick a theme, you go out into the world wide interweb and find an appropriate clip, hopefully less than three minutes long, come over here and post that you are up and we all come and see what it is you've done.  Boxer began this and it's up to us to finish it.  Kind of like how the young kids took the herd the rest of the way to town after John Wayne died in The Cowboys. God did I hate Bruce Dern after that.  I don't know if I watched a movie with him in it for like 10 years.

This week's theme was a suggestion from Five Wood.  With the death of Leslie Nielson, he thought a cop movie theme would be good.  I didn't have anything better so I rolled with it.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Well, that sucked!

North Dakota State 42, Montana State 17.  This was a 4 point game is 8 minutes left in the fourth and then the wheels really came off the ol' apple cart.  A good season for the Cats.  It exceeded some expectations but that's the thing with success.  The more you taste it, the higher your expectations are.  NDSU was tough, but I didn't like a few of the things the Cats were doing on offense, but then what do I know?  Good luck to the Bison.  I hope they party stomped Eastern Washington.  Nine months until the Cats play again.  Sigh.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Random thoughts #24

Things that crossed my mind while wondering why life has been so good to me.

#1. I find myself saying "dude" a lot more than I used to and it sucks.

#2. Andie MacDowell is getting better looking with age. Not that she is that great  of an actress, but hot, yes she is.

#3. "Human Target" is the best show you aren't watching. Mark Valley is the star. A West Point graduate and a Desert Storm vet. The show is fun, exciting and good entertainment. Indira Varma is hotter than doughnut grease.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Have a great weekend. Go Cats

Spent the last two nights at an avalanche awareness seminar.  It's one of the reasons I haven't been much of a blogger.  It was a great course.  The in-field training is next Sunday and I'm looking forward to it.  Anyway,  after attending classes and getting 8 inches of great snow last night I thought I'd take you all into the weekend with this awesome snowmobile video.  This will be my third season riding and it's as much fun as anything.  While we try to be safe, it is also the most dangerous activity I partake in.  We don't climb hills or "highmark". We look for big "powder parks" to just play in.  Lots of fun and virtually no danger of an avalance.  There were some interesting things that I learned though and will be even more aware of my surroundings while traveling to play. 

Three highligts to look for.  Around the :56 mark this guy is just plowing through snow in a meadow.  The first day I took out my new sled last year it was like this and it was the most fun I've had riding. At 2:57 you can see an avalanche fracture on the left of the screen.  The rider looks to his right and sees the snow wave coming.  He banks out to the left around the tree or rock formation (hard for me to tell) and out of the path to safety.  Textbook riding.  At 3:22 he makes a big jump and cranks the sled to his left leaving this big trail of "cold smoke". Its awesome.

One game at a time.

I have a random thoughts I worked on last night and will post that later, until then you have to hear about the MSU Bobcats.  Hopefully for a few more weeks.

Your Montana State Bobcats begin their quest for their fourth national championship tomorrow when the North Dakota State Bison (they pronounce it BY-zun) come to town. It's the first home playoff game for the Cats since 2006.  As you can imagine, I'm pretty excited.  We had 8 inches of snow last night.   Kick off is slated for 12 PM  MST.

I watched NDSU last week.  They are big up front on both sides of the ball.  Their defense is very stout and is the reason they are in the playoffs.  It will taken a very well executed game tomorrow for the Cats to win.  We have a big advantage at quarterback in Denarius McGhee.  He was the Big Sky Conference's offensive player of the year and is one of 20 finalists for the Peyton Award, given annually to the best offensive player at the FCS level (formally Division I-AA).  Did I mention that he is also a straight A student?  Did I also mention that he is a redshirt FRESHMAN?!

Anyway, I have snow to plow and house to clean for company coming for the game.  Below are two videos.  The first is a little montage done by an MSU student with some highlights from the season.  This kid has posted several of these and does great work.

The second is an interview with the fine young man I just mentioned.  If you have a few minutes, watch this.  There is no way you can't like this kid.  He's from Dallas, TX living in Montana and loving every minute of it. At about the 2:10 mark of the video a reporter tell's Denarius he's been named BSC Offensive Player of the Year.  Watch this kid's reaction.  How can you not like him? If he was 6'2" tall he'd be in the Big 12 somewhere.  I'm so glad he's only 5'11".  So is the rest of Bobcat Nation.

Supposed to be 31F at kickoff tomorrow.  SUHWHEET!!  The game will be broadcast on Altitude if you happen to get that channel.  If I can find where to stream it on the NCAA's website, I'll put that up in my random thoughts.