Just Call Me Torch

Posted: September 28, 2018 in free verse, poem, poet, poetry, writing
Tags: , , , ,

Ok, I will begin. I will think of something to say, and I must have patience, and what I think of will be what it is, words only to pass the time,  your and my time.

It has actually (please not LITERALLY) been months since a new post but writing about posts is not what I want to write about, although it may turn into that. Stop me if I stray.

It all began in July, the 21st  I think.  My computer hiccupped. It actually (please not LITERALLY ) did hiccup. A sound very similar to a child’s hiccup and then a hiss was emitted from the 1 inch speaker residing, I’m guessing, somewhere in the bottom or underside of my eight year old machine. The screen went black and the harddrive restarted and it appeared the contraption was cycling power. While this wildly continued, I rose from my spot on the couch and very quietly and slowly backed   away from it and from the room, leaving the device to what I perceived as its own self-destruction.  You see, my laptop is equipped with a very early model of lithium ion battery. And in the last year or two on television I have witnessed what seems to be many cars, airplanes, cellphones and  vape shop pants pockets erupting into 4th of July fireworks. I did not want that to take place in my lap while I was sitting on my favorite couch. It is a very comfortable leather couch and it was early morning and I was not yet clothed in my usual blue jeans, only my tee-shirt and Skivvy underpants, definitely not a good place or attire for an out of control computer bottle rocket to be launched.  I will leave that to the guys on YouTube.

So you see, I have been without a computer other than my Iphone. I know there probably is “an App for That” but I have not pursued it. I have tried but have found it way too time consuming to write a complete post on that tiny virtual keyboard. I have only been able to “like” and leave very short comments.

Now I have acquired a manageable laptop. I hope to be back contributing more posts soon.

Such is the life of John



J probably won’t be allowing OC the use of the aircraft again any time soon.


Next Step

Posted: July 25, 2018 in free verse, poem, poet, poetry, writing

Wishing I could be told the next step, the next task, the next solving of the puzzle, with an analysis paralysis I gaze, eyes frozen at the project. Only I can bring this to an end, a finish, the final result of what I have created. It waits only for me, pieces of the puzzle that will never fall into the proper order on their own doing. Only by tools in my own hands, ordered by my own brain, from my own skull will this end.  A project that began with a very explicit blueprint, a plan has proceeded to this place that I have found myself. Like a thousand page book that has had the last 10 pages lost or not yet written, I am asking of myself to bring it to a respectful and honorable ending. Using all of the final proper proportions, I will turn my imagination into a real object of Plexiglas, carbon fiber and the shining polished aluminum that it is made of. It will fly.


Field and Stream

Posted: June 11, 2018 in free verse, poem, poet, poetry, writing

A few weeks ago, my company purchased for me a new work vehicle. A new shiny white pickup. It is equipped with all the options, you name it, AM FM XM radio, chrome bumpers, four wheel drive, a nice fiberglass topper. It even has electric adjustable seats, mirrors and windows. I spend a lot of time on the road traveling between assignments. Although I really loved it, after over 215,000 uneventful miles in the old Tundra, a new vehicle was a welcome break and change of pace.

Unfortunately, with only 3500 miles accumulated on this new beast of burden, I had a fatal encounter with a deer. Fatal for the deer that is. Thinking about how the accident happened, I really don’t believe I killed it. It was broad daylight, it ran out of a deep ditch and squarely in front of me, neither of us had a chance. She was killed on contact and the contact caused a little over 5,000 dollars in damage to the new, shiny white front end of the pickup. I firmly believe that the animal committed suicide after choosing the first fast traveling passing vehicle. I certainly didn’t want to hurt it so I must place some of the blame on the deer. But it did bring back an old memory.

When I was young, I had a memorable encounter with the white tail deer. Growing up in a Field and Stream family, I learned to hunt and fish from my father and older brother. Wild game was a staple of our diet. Fish, rabbit, pheasant, quail and squirrel were not unusual in the freezer or on our dinner table. We always hunted and fished legally, never exceeded the harvest limits and always respected the natural habitat. I saw many deer in the wild and along the side of our roads. The deer population was not as many as it is today. Then the occasional spotting of a small herd of deer was considered a treat or even an event.

But I only remember hunting deer one time with my father. On that occasion, after spotting the deer in the distance and ready to shoot, my father paused looking over the barrel of his slug loaded shotgun and quietly whispers to me, “He sure is a good looking animal, he’ll live for another day” and brought down the heavy Savage 12 gauge to his side. Taking turns, we watched the big magnificently racked buck through our binoculars, letting him slowly wander out of range back into the thick timber of hickory, oak trees and raspberry brier. We never hunted deer again. Some may call that buck fever or weak sentimentalism, I saw it as a father showing his son respect for another living being.

Since then, I have gone on deer and elk hunting expeditions with acquaintances, but in other states where I didn’t have a resident or nonresident license or carry a gun. In places where the shot animals had to be hauled out on pack horses. But I’ve never really hunted, I’ve only observed. So now, after over 50 years, I can say that I have killed my first deer. Not with a slug loaded shotgun or high powered rifle but by the chrome bumper, fender, grille and hood of a shiny, new, white 2012 Silverado Chevy. Not that there is much glamour in either. And certainly not as memorable as it was in the late afternoon on that crisp chilly fall day in southern Iowa when my Dad without shooting, un-shouldered his heavy old Savage shotgun while whispering “he’ll live for another day”.

Such is the life of John.

(First posted 09/10/2013)

Here it is May and I’m still thinking winter. We are well into the fifth month of the year and before we know it the year will be half gone, will we miss it, the time? Was it really ever here or are we just walking through life and the miles and steps are just making time, our forward motion only making an allusion of time? We are covering the distance, we must be moving. Well, there is TIME (the kind that Einstein talked about) and there is another kind of time, Brain Time. Because I’m not as smart as Einstein, I have to deal in the easier understandable, Brain Time.

Brain Time is the time we use when we are waiting to meet someone at such ‘n such a place at such n’ such a time. If you get there first, the time waiting for them to arrive seems long. But if you’re the one that is late, the time getting there seems to go fast. Those seconds and minutes add up, but depending on your brain, some accumulate slowly, some more quickly. Unlike TIME, there are no mathematical formulas for computing Brain Time. We have to wing it and do all of the computing in our head. And the neat thing is, we don’t have to show all of our work.

Here’s an example (we don’t need to show our work but we must have examples),  we are driving past a grocery store and the wife says “Stop, I need to run in here and get a head of lettuce, it will just take a minute”.  Need I say more?

After sitting in the car waiting for that minute to pass, you clean your finger nails, play both CD’s of Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”.  And finally decide you can’t hold it any longer and will have to use the store’s facilities to pee when your wife finally immerses out the door with three sacks of necessities to go with that one head of lettuce in a Santa Fe chicken salad she has decided to make.

Brain Time her, one minute twenty seconds, Brain Time me, 95 minutes…….. exactly. Hopefully she hasn’t forgotten the lettuce.


Such is the life of John












Let’s do it.

DSS, OC, E, and John

** Fair Use for educational purposes only.

The “thing” going around in the last couple days is that a data collection firm harvested 50 million “Facebook” profiles.

I do not use FaceBook. Never had a profile there. I started one and filled in a few of the initial blanks of the profile and then scrapped it. But my profiles for any internet site are all different. Yes, I lie.

I was in “I.T.” for over 40 years. Yes, before there was a word or name for the technology. I began when information technology was just beginning. When computers became commonly used and memory storage increased, I saw that “information” was going to be key. User / customer data were secure mainly because every Tom, Dick and Harry didn’t have a computer mainframe at their disposal. The “internet” was just beginning, it wasn’t even called that. Only the military, colleges and big businesses had a mainframe computer and phone lines that connected them. Things were primitive.

The most popular computer phrase was “garbage in – garbage out”. Think of that. And that information was on punch cards and later reel to reel magnetic tapes.

Today, as everyone knows, the most powerful “mainframes” fit in the palm of our hand. Access to information is everywhere, whether it is your information or your neighbors, you can get it. How do we combat that? How do we keep our information private? Frankly, we can’t. Eventually your private info will be compromised. You must understand and believe that.

In the words of Mario Savio, “we can only slow the machine, clog the levers and the gears of the machine”. Clog the machine so that the information about you at Yahoo, WordPress, Facebook, Google, Amazon and YouNameIt is unreliable, confusing, conflicted. Confuse it so information gathered, pigeon holed and categorized will be less useful or at least questioned and less valuable.

Most things are self evident and I won’t repeat them here. Other things never to disclose is your real birth date, where you were born, when you were married, where you were married, your middle initial. If it is required, input something different in all of your different accounts. Get it? And if you judge it unnecessary for the account you are signing up for, your real name. It doesn’t matter, because the deep data miners will know that by your internet provider, IP address and probably your MAC address.

On variable information, ie – your life style, fuck’em up. If you are a Dem, input Rep. Next account input Independent. Next time when asked, Dem. Clog the fucking machine. I’ve been married in Las Vegas, Belgium, Washington DC and Fargo. To name a few, I forget the others. I have used 15 different middle initials, so far. For every serious Google search, I make one or two far out ones. My dog’s name has been Old Yeller, Lassie, Ralph, Blu, Skippy and NoneUBiznes. When answering a request for a special password validation question, for gawd’s sake don’t use anything that is the truth. You don’t need to use your mother’s real maiden name in their info profile or your real dogs name or da dit da dit da. You get the picture?

If you are a conservative, visit a few Liberal sites. And visa versa. If you are “religious” check out PornHub (wait, that one may not confuse them). Turn your TV (they are harvesting data on most TVs, too, which I love, every time Trump comes on, I change stations for a few seconds) or computer to Fox News, MSNBC or CNN and leave it on two or three hours while you do yard work or detail your car. If you are checking prices on underwear on Amazon, check out guns for a minute or two also or try to find “Underwater Basket Weaving”. See how far out your random advertisements on Yahoo, Google, FaceBook and WordPress , etc can get.

Remember “garbage in – garbage out”. Definitely keep them confused on location, age, politics, education and income. And most importantly, confuse them on what your fears are.

The point that I’m trying to make here is, we are not the customers of any of the social media companies. We are their product. They sell our data. Not just data that has to do with their platforms, but anything whether public or private that we reveal to them.

The recent news that 50 or 60 million accounts and any of the accounts of friends, associates, grandmothers, aunts, uncles, grandkids and dogs, kittens and personal confession posts and emails were sold to a company that mines, sorts and collates this data to be sold to clients that uses this data for their own cause should not surprise us.

Do you want your private information helping to elect any of your political opponents? Whether republican or democrat it affects you.
Do you want your data used to decide free choice, gun ownership or gender issues? What ever your political hot spot is they can use that to sway votes, no matter which persuasion you have. They don’t care, they are selling it to the highest bidder and turn that data into what ever cause that is willing to pay.

Take Ol’ Great Uncle Nutz advice. If you can’t beat’em then confuse’em. Do what analytical and political strategy companies are doing to us, “If you can’t furnish them with facts, then buffalo them with bull-shit”. If you still want to participate in the social media machine, then clog the levers, clog the gears and stop the machine with so much inaccurate information that their collating will be of no use.




I have this thing that is still bothering me. This old post may explain it.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Ok, I can’t hold my tongue any longer. This has been bothering me for a month now and the events of this weekend have brought it to a head. It is something that no one has mentioned.

The event of this weekend was the death of Andy Rooney. I shouldn’t have to remind anyone in the U.S. that watches the news or the 60 Minutes TV show who he was. It was very well known that he closed the news magazine’s last 5 minutes practically every Sunday night for the last 30 years. In so many opinions he was a wonderful writer. I say wonderful not great because he was not a Steinbeck or a Hemingway and he would have been the first to say that. He was just a writer that you could read or listen to his commentary and it made you feel good and maybe chuckle, no matter what the subject. Those that liked to read him were in love with the way he could take any subject and expand upon it just enough to make an interesting few minutes. I think this came from his experience as a reporter for the Army newspapers during World War II.

As most have heard, Mr. Rooney at the age of 92, died this weekend after having retired from television less that a month ago. He died from complications after a minor surgery. After the news of his so late retirement, the news of his death is very surreal. But that is not what’s bothering me, although I will miss his talent very much. I say “bothers me” because that is what he wrote about. He even published a book titled “Things That Bother Andy Rooney” so I know, now that he’s dead it is alright for me to tell “The Thing that Bothered Me About Andy Rooney”. Something that no one has mentioned.

Have you ever wondered how anyone could allow their eyebrows to grow so long and thick? Eyebrows, long bushy eyebrows. Andy Rooney had the longest, bushiest eyebrows of anyone I have ever seen. I mean long eyebrows that turned around onto themselves. It had to have become his “look”, his identity. So much so that a barber wouldn’t dream of touching them. It bothers me that he could be so public in allowing his eyebrows to become so unkempt. And no one that I know of has ever mentioned it. Perhaps I have gotten fixated on this because as I grow older, the more I notice and have to trim my own eyebrows.

It would seem, that guys like myself and Andy, as we shave everyday, we would notice the eyebrows. Even after having trimmed mine innumerable times, I still don’t specifically inspect them every morning as I shave. It seems I will go for days without thinking of them and then one day I notice that the brow hairs are standing out at an outlandishly long length acquiring a very bushy look. I think, if I would allow them, my eyebrows could become every bit as bushy as Andy’s. I wonder at what age I will become like Andy and just let the darn things grow and not fuss with them. And maybe if I could write as well as Andy did, my eyebrows could be over looked unnoticed by others, also.


Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.

The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge.

I have noticed even people who claim everything is predestined, and that we can do nothing to change it, look before they cross the road.

Stephen Hawking


April 17, 2014

Among the jumbling mumbling mode
the Racker Thatcher crumbs his creel.

his back’s crunched bent
– his chrome’s thrust spent,
fingers palms thick tough as heel.

upon the humbling rumbling ride
the Racker Thatcher moves his way.

his voice’s grunt gone
– now electron’s song,
teared eyes movewink what to say.

within the mightling thinkling mind
the Racker Thatcher spins his rhyme.

smiles gum and tooth
– speaks Universal truth,
of our, A Brief History of Time.


Through the Veil

Posted: March 12, 2018 in free verse, poem, poet, poetry, writing
Tags: , , , ,

Modesty, sculptured by Antonio Corradini,

As my eyes fade and my breath weakens
Come to me
Come to me wrapped in your transparent veil
with draped naked breasts and swollen teats
Veil loose over your light hair, brilliant eyes and smooth face
Come to me
Come to me and see me now through your gauzed eyes
see my wrinkled skin, pale chiseled unshaven face
as it was, under your silken folds, when I was a younger man
please see me as then
Come to me
Come to me and hold my swollen hand
beneath your translucent silks
tight against your warm and supple belly skin
so I can again steal the deliciousness of its taste and feel
Come to me
Come to me naked beneath your veil, your earthly form vaguely exposed
and rest your hip on my bed’s edge
so we can closely gaze the last look of our softened naked earthly souls.

DSS  © 3/10/2018