Ah, Summer! That time of the year when we can savor the bounties of Nature, and enjoy the halcyon days of warmth and sunshine! But, in order to do so, one must block out the rest of the world, retreat from all the negative vibrations issuing from every direction. I am currently submerging myself into my little town, along with the other 3000 souls who live here, and experience a rebirth of appreciation for what we have.

My long-lost golf game is finally coming back, scores dropping down to the low 80’s, and I’m coming to terms with the age factor—-I can no longer hit my drives as far as I used to, and it makes about a 4 or 5 stroke difference for an 18 hole game.The days when I had a 6 or 7 handicap are long gone.  But I’m hitting the ball well, as long as I remember to keep that damned right hand out of the shots. Yesterday’s 82, and today’s 83 make me think I’m right on the cusp of something special!  My goal as a semi-elderly person is to average 40, per nine. And I’m close!

Then there’s my new boat, a 115 hp. Open bow ski/fishing assemblage, and one which I have yet to use. Having been gone for five weeks on an around the world Odyssey, I finally tried to take it out last week only to be confronted with whitecapped waves at the nearby lake. But, being Mr. Intrepid, I’ll try again this Thursday, and hopefully get lots of practice in preparation for the arrival of our two young grandsons at the latter part of July. Someone had better warn the walleye and trout that I’m in the area, and to keep their children locked up safely.

Another item is looking toward our son’s planned marriage in early November; helping with the preparations provides me additional focus, and generates some excitement about the road trip to California, mixed with visits to numerous old friends in that state and in Arizona and New Mexico.

But what about “that outer world”? Politically, I’m a registered Independent, leaning  to the left, and I’m fed up with all sides. As an Obama supporter, I fault him greatly for not having recommended the conclusions of HIS appointed, bi-partisan commission, to Congress. I have not liked the way he has stood down from perceived threats by the Republicans in the House, and gone to compromise. I’m tired of the Republicans playing games of “Win” instead of doing their jobs, and I’m tired of hearing that Obama had a majority in both houses of Congress and couldn’t get things done. They neglect to point out that he did not have a filibuster-safe majority, and that they have blocked every potentially fruitful proposal he has made about the bad economy, which they created. He’s done lots of good things for which he hasn’t received any credit.

And who is Grover Norquist? I don’t remember anyone voting for him.  Our own congressional representatives are mere parrots of the GOP line, and two of the three generally do nothing constructive. While I’m at it, I need to say that we should do away with the electoral college crap. Since I live in a strong Republican majority state, my vote for any non-Republican presidential candidate doesn’t count.

I have to admit to being somewhat in favor of what the Wisconsin governor did, against the public employees unions. I have no problems with unions, unless they recognize that in general, public boards and commissions have little to say about increasing their  sources of revenue, and thus are often “held hostage” by unions who want more for themselves. I applaud the way that the auto makers unions stood down on their contracts, recognizing the economic atmosphere prevalent throughout the country. But I’ve often sympathized with entities such as local school boards, confronted with unreasonable and unaffordable demands by teachers; again creating a hostage situation.

I’m tired of religions. All these folks that hide their heads in the sand, denying evolutionary FACT, are essentially saying that man doesn’t have the ability to reason, even though each new discovery is a step toward understanding or knowing that Supreme Being that they all accept. They keep projecting their values onto others, whether they are evangelical Christians or fundamentalist Muslims. The so-called Islamic terrorists are merely a mirror of our own, beloved Ku Klux Klansmen, albeit with more sophisticated weapons. Hatred they share in common. Don’t they know that Judaism, Islam, and Christianity share the same roots?

And those people who spend a lot of energy fighting abortion and gay marriage, all they need to really do is decide it’s “not for me” and let the rest of the world decide for themselves. Instead, we’re spending lots of time, money, and effort in our state legislatures, on these social concerns rather than economic issues, which directly affect everyone.

I thought that state legislatures have the responsibility to consider proposed legislation as it is drafted—is there really a need to have a constitutional amendment against Islamic Sharia law, as is happening in some states? How stupid can we get? Don’t they know that most Muslim-oriented countries don’t follow Sharia law, themselves? I have spent quite a bit of time in the Middle East during the past year, and can verify the fact that most folks, like ourselves, want the same things we want, and are very nice people regardless of their religious orientation. The Al Quaeda’s of the world are an aberrant faction based not on the tenets of their espoused religious beliefs but rather on hatred and self-gratification. I doubt if any of them could hold a real job.

Well, I best should return to repairing the screens on our back porch.  For years, we had no door mounted in the doorway, and the does would bring their fawns onto the porch in the winter, to sleep. When startled, they would jump through the screens into the backyard. Once we even had a 7-point buck snoozing there. I’m not a hunter; in fact, I’m opposed to guns in general, although if only used for hunting I guess they are necessary to control the game populations. I’ve had too many students and other persons I know, killed in gun accidents, and I’ve even had a sawed-off shotgun jammed into my stomach when I worked years ago in the inner cities of the Midwest.

I was never a supporter for reintroduction of wolves into Yellowstone, 2 hours from here; my “reasoning” was that the environment there is not the same environment that it was when there were native populations of wolves in the area; man has changed that and that there would ultimately be confrontations between wolves and ranchers. And have been.

Maybe next week will be better. I’m attending the 56th reunion of my high school class of ’56, in the Kansas City area. I’ll try and keep my XM radio on Oldies music instead of talk radio, as I travel, remaining in my protective cocoon away from that “real world”. For the time being, it sucks.

ABH                                                                                                                                     TOY

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