Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Yesterday I had my teeth cleaned, a Scrapejob. Jan is my dental hygienist and she is really good, before I went in my teeth felt fine as always but afterwards they felt wonderful. Jan is the only one who has ever made me feel that way. About 4 years ago my appointment with Jan was cancelled as she had gone off to this island in the South Pacific on a 2-year contract with some company, the second time that she had done this. Jan had told me about this place before she left, she said that after she got off work Monday through Friday she'd either scuba dive or snorkel and of course do this on weekend. I don't know why Jan's contracts are in 2-year increments or what they do for a dental hygienist when she's not there. I wouldn't want to do this to such a large extent but I think that a lot of people would at least to get out of the ratrace. The dentists have the same opinion of Jan as I do and maybe her good reputation helps her to get this, probably so. While she's still here I'm fortunate to have Jan before she goes yet again to her South Sea Island Paradise. Whether it's Jan or somebody else I get my teeth cleaned every 6 months, I haven't had a cavity in over 9 years, it wasn't always this way. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. I flew to Ushuaia from Buenos Aires at the beginning of April 2 years ago. I said that I don't make hotel reservations but I bought the 3 nights at the 4 Star Hotel to make sure that I didn't have to sleep on the sidewalk, Ushuaia is very popular. Ushuaia is 1470 miles from Buenos Aires and is the southernmost town in the world. It's on Tierra del Fuego (named by Magellan the Land of Fire, he had seen Indians' bonfires) and is bordered by the Beagle Channel and is only 600 miles from Antartica. Patagonia is the southernmost part of South America and is shared by both Argentina and Chile. To get to Ushuaia I flew on Aerolineas Argentinas which is about the worse airline I've been on and I've been on a few. Aerolineas Argentinas has a terrible reputation within Argentina as oftentimes tourists coming to Ushuaia to leave on Antartic Cruises arrive 8 hours late and miss their Cruise Ship (bet they were happy). My flight was only an hour late probably because it was the offseason. I was met at the airport and taken to my hotel, Tierra del Fuego, it was new and nice. And they threw in a real good buffet breakfast, you get fooded up for the day and then you don't have to think about it until the evening. My first day I just catted about to see what was going on in this town of 64,000, it was kind of cold and windy but not too much and I enjoyed walking around. The next day I hiked up to their little glacier, the Glacier Martial, took the ski lift back, I had never been to a glacier before. The day after that I went on a 5 hour Penguin Tour out 50 miles to Hammer Island to see the last of the penguins before they migrated, this cost $50. And yes, there were about fifty people on the boat. You don't get off the boat to see the 54 penguins you just ogle these guys who are standing there on the shore as though they had been waiting for you. The Penguins were both Magellanic and Gentoo Penguins and of course everybody was excited and taking their pictures, to be in the presence of Penguins in the Wild was very exciting, cute little fellows and that's putting it mildly. Everybody loves Penguins. On the way back they showed us a movie, "the March of the Penguins." There's no nightlife in Ushuaia, you just watch TV and then go to sleep, save your strength for the following day. The next day I took a tour of the National Park which was part of the Package Deal, everything in the Ushuaia region is the southermost in the World, the southernmost road which I have a picture of me standing at the end of, the southernmost lake, the southernmost forest, the southernmost anything you can think of. My last night, Cecilia, who worked for the company who handled my package deal called me at 10:15 P.M. to tell me to be ready to be picked up at the hotel at 7 P.M. the next evening to fly back to Buenos Aires. She woke me up and I already knew this, I said thanks dear. I couldn't get back to sleep until 12:30 A.M. My last day I toured their old prison from which there had been no way to escape, they had made it into a museum showing all these things about Ushuaia, it was very interesting and there were a lot of people there. Being in Ushuaia had been a wonderful experience.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Last night Shane Mosley stopped Antonio Margarito in a one-sided contest at the Staples Center is L.A. This was a big upset as Margarito was anointed as one of the best fighters out there after stopping Miguel Cotto at the MGM in Las Vegas where I was in attendance last July 26. Mosley is actually sort of semi-washed up and I offer that the reason he was so successful was due to the huge number of flush on the face punches that Margarito absorbed from Cotto. I personally saw the hard-punching Cotto bang Margarito over a hundred times to the face seemingly with no effect, at that time (Cotto's Revenge?). Margarito has been a professional boxer since he was "15" and now he's "30," he has a lot of mileage on his body. About 10 years ago Tim Couch was the first player taken in the NFL Draft and by the Cleveland Browns but after 5 years of playing behind that bad offensive line his body was so torn down that the Browns cut him and he couldn't make any other team even as a third-string quarterback. About the same thing happened to David Carr more recently, he was the first player taken in the NFL Draft, by the Houston Texans and after 5 years his own body was so torn down that the Texans cut him although he did make another team as a back-up quarterback. The human body can take only so much abuse and then it's shot, that's you, me or anybody else. With the athletes I find it sad to see. From Mendoza, Argentina I took a Cama (luxury) bus for the 700 mile trip to Buenos Aires which I hadn't been to for 17 years. This took about 13 hours and they served us a good supper with wine and a good breakfast enroute (7 P.M. to 8 A.M.). And we even played tic tac toe for a bottle of fine wine, ha, ha, with everybody applauding the lucky winner ( I once played a chicken and got a draw, hey that's better than most did against this guy). They have a lot of fine buses in South America and for not much money. Once we got close to Buenos Aires due to the extremely bad traffic it took 2 hours just to get to the centrally located bus station. Once there I took a taxi to Florida Street, the main drag downtown, to a travel agency that I had read about that seemed good (Marshall Loeb who writes a business column in newspapers recently called Buenos Aires "the Paris of South America" and rightly so). This thing didn't open until 10 A.M., I think none of them do. Once there the nice gal sold me a package deal for 3 nights in Ushuaia with my plane leaving at 7 A.M. the next morning, it sounded good to me and it was good. In the meantime I wanted to go to a Tango dinner and show that night, there's many and as she said that she had been to them all I asked her which she had liked best and she said, "La Ventana." So I catted about until that evening as is my wont and saw the Cathedral which is San Martin's final resting place and other interesting stuff. I had agreed to be picked up at this 5 Star Hotel off of Florida Street at 7 P.M. and around 6 P.M. I was in one of their Men's Rooms and I was washing up and brushing my teeth, one of their employees came in and saw me and called the cops on me. Hey, they could tell that I was a foreign tourist and just making some ablutions so what's the big deal? Anyway I thought that I should get out of there, the cops were walking in as I was walking out. Good grief. So I walked down the street and came back around 7 P.M. and was picked up for the Tango Show. People, this is something that you should do in your lifetime, it was so fabulous. They took a picture with this young chick, a tango dancer, with her leg draped across me, ha, ha, I sent it to my brother in Cleveland. They had me sit down across from another guy who was by himself, we were to share this bottle of fine wine but he didn't drink so by the end of the evening I had finished it by myself. That steak dinner was so delicious and the waiters were so great, if you touched a napkin to your lips they'd instantly bring you another one. The Tango Show started at 10 P.M. and went until Midnight, those dancers were so talented and great, it was something to behold. The entire schmerz cost $70, it was a night I'll never forget. They dropped me off on Florida Street around l A.M. and it was totally deserted but perfectly safe, no miscreants prowling about or anything like that and I caught a taxi to their Domestic Airport .
Friday, January 23, 2009
John (Ivan) Demanjuk was born in the Ukraine on April 3, 1920, he applied for admission to the United States as a displaced person, a d.p., in 1951, he gained entry to the U.S. in 1952, he married another d.p. and settled in Seven Hills, a suburb of Cleveland. He gained employment at a nearby Ford Plant and eventually retired with a good pension. His problems began when the U.S. Justice Department decided that he had gained admittance to the U.S. and U.S. Citizenship under false pretences, that he had worked in the Nazi Death Camps. The Israelis decided that Demjanjuk was actually the infamous "Ivan Grozny," Ivan the Terrible, who had operated the gas chamber at Treblinka forcing the Jews in to their deaths with a whip or sword, always drunk as he did this. Israel requested Demjanjuk's deportation to stand trial and he was deported on February 28, 1986. During his trial many old, tortured people claimed yes, this is Ivan the Terrible. Not looking very hard for the truth Israel sentenced Demjanjuk to be hung. I was a member of Amnesty International at this time and would crank out 3 letters a week to get people out of foreign prisons, I wrote the President and 4 Senators that the Israelis certainly hadn't proven that Demjanjuk was Ivan the Terrible in a trial that the "Cleveland Plain Dealercalled a "Kangaroo Court." Demjanjuk was held in prison awaiting his execution from April, 1988 to August,1993. During this time "60 Minutes" and other U.S. News People actually investigated by going to the area around Treblinka and finding people who remembered this guy well, there were farmers who were his drinking buddies who also knew him as Ivan the Terrible, there was ha,ha, an old woman who was the innkeeper's wife whose husband had sold her service to Ivan for gold taken from the Jews. They remembered his name as Marchenko, they said he was dark unlike the light Demjanjuk, that he had big lips unlike Demjanjuk, that he was half a head shorter than Demjanjuk, that he was 10 years older than Demjanjuk. I wrote my letters before all this investigation saying that the Israelis got everything they wanted even to the extent of this foolishness. Having the Truth shoved in their face that they had the wrong man, the Israelis freed Demjanjuk to the U.S. and Demjanjuk had his citizenship restored in 1998 but it was stripped away again in 2004 as the U.S. Justice Department decided that Demjanjuk was Ivan the not so Terrible, a Wachmann, guard, who walked the barbed wire, this is what he probably was. I've been to Auschwitz and nearby Birkenau and was in the basement at Auschwitz where the Zyclon-B gas was first tested on 600 Russian Prisoners of War, it was creepy being down there by myself imagining these guys writhing and clawing the walls. The Nazis were very cruel, Americans used to be thought of as the good guys, that they were above torture such as almost drowning people. A friend of mine a couple years ago said that if Bush thought this Iraq thing was so good why didn't he send his daughters over there as they've been of enlistment age throughout this debacle, then he entailed what their duties might be. Demjanjuk is appealing the taking away of his U.S. Citizenship, in 2005 he was ordered deported to the Ukraine and this is also under appeal, in 2008 Germany requested that Demjanjuk be deported there to stand trial for working in the Death Camps. John Demjanjuk is "87" and over the past twenty years has been sentenced to death , imprisoned and persecuted----Why not just leave the Old Man alone?
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
William Abb Cannon was born on August 8, 1937 in Philadephia, Mississippi, early in life his family moved to Baton Rouge, Louisiana so that his father could work in wartime industry. When Billy Cannon was a boy his father lost an arm in a machine and thereafter his mother was the main support of the family which lived in poverty on the wrong side of the tracks. Blessed with good size and great speed Billy Cannon became a high school All-American at Istrouma High School scoring 39 touchdowns as a senior. Although a very good student as well as a great athlete Billy Cannon was nonetheless "...Known as a thug, a punk..." and received a 90 day suspended sentence while still in high school for "rolling queers." They're so promiscuous that they'll go off with anybody, I used to have a friend from Atlanta who said that he had done this in his youth, he'd beat them up and then take their money, he said they didn't have much maybe $10. He seemed ashamed that he had done this, in Ohio I had never heard of this, maybe it's a Southern thing. Lusting for this home-grown product Louisiana State gave Billy's father a job as a janitor to ensure that his son would accept their scholarship. Becoming a protege of the renowned physical culturist, Alvin Roy, Billy Cannon grew bigger and faster each year until by the time he was a senior at LSU Billy Cannon could run a documented 100 yards in 9.4 seconds and heave the 16 pound shot 54 feet. A friend of mine and myself were wondering if there's anybody today in the world who can do the "Billy Cannon Double?" Having graduated from Istrouma High School in 1956, Billy Cannon was on the LSU freshman team in 1956 and on the varsity in 1957-1959 leading LSU to the National Championship in 1958 and winning the Heisman Trophy in 1959 in large part due to his 89 yard punt return for the game's only touchdown as LSU beat Ole Miss 7-3. The Houston Oilers of the AFL outbid the NFL for Billy Cannon who at 6'1" and 210 pounds led the AFL in rushing in 1961. Hurting his back his skills declined somewhat and although still a very good running back he was traded to the Oakland Raiders in 1964 and turned into a tight end where he was also quite good. Billy Cannon was to play in the AFL for 10 years and he scored 64 touchdowns. Billy went to school in the offseasons and sharp with the books he became an orthodontist. Setting up his practice in Baton Rouge Billy was making $300,000 a year as everybody wanted their hero touching their teeth. But Billy's malevolent side emerged and despite his big income he needed much more money due to bad investments and gambling debts. Billy Cannon became the ringleader of the 7th largest counterfeiting operation in the history of this country printing out $50 million in hundred dollar bills from 1981 to 1983. Sentenced to 5 years in prison Billy served half of that at the federal prison at Texarkana and was released to a halfway house in 1985 and free in 1986. Billy's once thriving practice was kaput as he was regarded as a pariah, nobody would go to him who is still the only player in Louisiana State Football's storied history to have his number (22) retired. Billy Cannon was able to salvage his life and is the longtime dentist at the Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
In the old "Zap Comics" they had "A Honky goes into the ghetto and makes a fool out of himself (I really love you people)." Obama might not be the first, a lot of people thought that Warren Harding had Black ancestry. They used to call that "A N-word in the Woodpile." France and England announced at the same time that they wouldn't be repaying what they had borrowed from the United States to fight WWI, an angered President Harding said "They hired (borrowed) the money didn't they?" This is a famous quote in American History. Deadbeats. If you ever go to Finland every Finn will proudly tell you that Finland was the only country to repay the U.S. the money that they had borrowed for WWI. Martin King is allright by me but King Day comes right after the Holidays, you're exhausted and then there's King Day. Why not just throw King Day in with Presidents Day and make it Presidents and King Day if they must have it. Franklin Roosevelt has no day and he was the only President to be elected 3 times much less 4 times and he was President when this country emerged from the Depression and WWll had already been won when he died. WWll is what brought this country out of the Depression what with the rampant spending and ever since an American has been able to expect to be able to own a new car and house in his lifetime, a very high standard of living and for such a huge population. Once I flew into Santiago I went down to the bus station and waited for the morning when I could take a bus to Argentina (oh, I've spent the night countless times in airports and bus stations in this country and around the world, don't cost nuthin'). I took the bus through the Andes and to Mendoza, Argentina, this involved a big wasting of time at the border, they even had me open up my bag so that a dog could stick his face in there (once I got to Mendoza I sprayed my bag with alcohol). We arrived in Mendoza after an 8 hour trip, nice little city, there's about 850,000 in the area which is known for its Wine Production. Little boys and little girls, Argentina is an extremely fine tourist destination, very safe, good-looking people most of whom are of European descent, real good stuff to see, cheap. I bought a bus ticket to leave on a Cama (luxury) bus the next night to Buenos Aires, looked around, spent the night in a hotel and went out the next morning to see the sights. I enjoyed their History and Archeological Museums and catted about until I found myself at their Zoo. I had the time and hadn't been to a Zoo since San Diego 5 years before so I spent a few hours at their very nice zoo. It was very pleasant and beautiful and there were lots of people there enjoying the day.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
From the "Enquirer's" actions recently I'm not so sure that ABC can Bully and Bribe you cowardly, corrupt Swine as they have for over 2 years. I enjoyed Santiago, Chile when I was there almost 2 years ago, they have fine history and art museums and the place is overall interesting, I hadn't been there in 17 years. It was the end of March and I flew to Easter Island, 2237 miles away, this being the offseason I was able to buy my round-trip in the States for only $560, pretty good price. It was Easter Sunday, 1722 when the Dutchman Roggaveeen saw Easter Island, Rapa Nui. It's extremely rural and layed-back, I was there 4 days which is plenty of time and enjoyed it a lot, wouldn't mind returning some day. I arrived around 11 A.M. and left around 1 P.M. 4 days later, I went to the main drag in Hango Roa, the capitol, and walked around trying to find a good price and found a nice room for $30 a night if I paid for it all at once. It was right there in the middle of everything, what little there is. The island is only 63 sq. mi. and only has 3800 inhabitants. I was walking around and some guy offered to take me to the high spots for $70 for 5 hours, sounded good to me so I rode in the front seat next to him with his youngest, a little boy, in the backseat. This worked out real well. Easter Island is famous for its Moai, its big statues carved from volcanic ash, the island has 3 extinct volcanoes. There were originally 887 of these although some have been carted off. The island has been populated since maybe 800 A.D. and there's wide speculation on when the Moai were carved, transported and then set up, these were as heavy as 82 tons. By 1550 there were as many as 9000 people on the island but it deteriorated vastly after that. By the time the Dutch saw it deforestation, civil war and cannibalism had produced a downtrodden people. By 1825 all of the Moai had been knocked over as the people thought that the gods that the statues depicted had failed them. European diseases and slave raide depopulated Eater Island until by 1900 there was hardly anybody living there. I went to a 15 Moai line called Ahu Tongariki and was walking around on the ahu, stone platform, when I was told there was a $2000 fine for this should I be caught, oh. I had seen a whole lot by the end of the day, the remainder of my time on Easter Island I spent walking around to see the various Moai and enjoying the peacefulness of the setting, a Chilean possession it's in good hands.
Friday, January 16, 2009
I know something that you people don't know, the farewell "Good Bye" is an Old English Contraction for "God Be With You." Oops. The most valued quality in Sports or any other aspect of Life is the Ability to do your best under the most intense pressure. Al Oerter passed away on October 1, 2007 at the age of "71" and he along with Carl Lewis and some guy in Sailing were the only Olympians to win an Olympic Gold Medal in the same event in 4 Consecutive Olympics. Alfred Adolf Oerter, Jr. was born September 19, 1936 in Queens and went to Sewanhaka High School. Naturally big at 6'4" and 280 pounds in 1954 he won a Track Scholarship to the University of Kansas where he competed in the Discus. At only "19" Oerter made the U.S. Olympic Team and competed at the Melbourne Olympics (I've been inside the Stadium) in 1956. There for the first time he won the Olympic Gold Medal in the Discus setting an Olympic Record. Al Oerter was to compete in 4 consecutive Olympics, Melbourne in 1956, Rome in 1960, Tokyo in 1964 and Mexico City in 1968 and each time won the Gold Medal in the Discus and each time setting an Olympic Record. In doing this he overcame a number of injuries even to the extent of passing up his last throw in Tokyo due to torn cartilege in his ribs, he said that he would visualize himself making the winning throw. Retiring at "32" after the Mexico City Olympics Al Oerter made his living as an abstract painter of all things. In his Old Age Al Oerter passed up a heart transplant that would have prolonged his existence saying, "I've had an interesting Life."
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
When it gets down to the final 8 in Olympic Hockey it's Single Elimination, Sweden "went home" while Belarus advanced to the semi-finals (does Daddy Ed tell a good story?) where they came down to Earth with Canada beating them 7-1, Canada then went on to defeat the U.S.A. 5-2 for the Hockey Gold Medal they were so hungry for. I've been to the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto and have a picture of me with my left hand on the Stanley Cup. Oh, one of Sweden's leading Newspapers had the pictures of the Swedish Team's Players on the Front Page along with the Salary that each made in the NHL, the Headline said "These Men Disgraced Their Country." So get a Life, I've lost 5 Dimes on a Sportsbet and it hardly bothered me, if you can't be a Good Sport you shouldn't be Competing. My day on Wednesday, February 20, 2002 wasn't over with the Belarus win over Sweden which was one of the 3 biggest Upsets in Olympic Hockey History along with the U.S.A. beating the Soviets 4-3 in 1980 and Great Britain defeating Canada 2-1 in 1936. I decided that I also wanted to see Apolo Anton Ohno of Seattle compete in Short Track Speedskating at the (ha) Delta Center at 7 P.M. I just Catted Around Salt Lake until about 4 P.M. when I made my way to the vicinity of the Delta Center. Getting a ticket for this very popular sold-out event, the 1500 meter Short Track Skating, was a Sticky Wicket. There weren't that many Scalpers and the ones that were offered bad seats for lots of money. I finally bought a $60 ticket for $150 and was glad to get it, mine wasn't a good seat but was far from the worst. Ohno was favored to win as many as 3 Gold Medals in Short Track Skating but the 1500 meter was to be the only one that he did win. It was close at the finish and Apolo Anton Ohno seemed to have finished Second to Kim Dongsung of South Korea. However after the Finish the Judges Conferred while an elated Kim was skating about holding a huge South Korean Flag. When Kim was told that he had been disqualified for cutting Ohno off as they raced for the Finish and that it was Ohno who had won the Gold Medal at 1500 meters, Kim threw his country's flag on the ice. I had made my way back to the temporary Greyhound Station just as the last bus to Las Vegas that day was leaving and they stopped and let me get on. This ride wasn't as restful as coming up, this guy who was about "40" thought that the lady busdriver, who was also about "40", was his Mother and was telling her his lifestory, which was really dull, the guy had lived a really dull life, in a Loud Voice for the duration of the trip to Las Vegas. Eh, kept her awake and I was very happy about my day at my first Olympics.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
I had never been to an Olympics and so when Salt Lake City hosted the 2002 Winter Olympics I thought that I should take advantage of its proximity to Las Vegas. In the Newspaper and on TV they were saying that there were plenty of tickets available and that you could just go to Salt Lake and buy them there. Seeing good events scheduled for February 20, 2002 I went down to the Greyhound Station and bought a ticket for Salt Lake City leaving from Las Vegas on the Evening of February 19. That was about an 11 hour trip and it was nice and peaceful on the bus and I got a good night's sleep (no doubt by this time you people have figured that I'm pretty easily pleased). I arrived at the temporary Greyhound Station which was a Truck Stop on the outskirts of town at 7 A.M., Truck Stops have good amenities and I caught a nice breakfast buffet to fill my tummy. The weather was cold and rainy which I like every so often and I made my way down to Temple Square via local bus around 8:30 A.M. I walk around a little bit and I'm approached by a guy offering me a $250 ticket for the quarter-final hockey game between Belarus and Sweden at the "E Center" Arena at 10:30 A.M., the price was $100 (scalping was legal). I said OK and gave the guy a hundred dollar bill and he was happy for this business, pretty quickly the ticket would have been worthless. And it took me 35 minutes by streetcar and walking to get to the "E Center," I was there with plenty of time (I always like to get to games early and cat around). Belarus was the 8th Seed having been outscored in their 2 previous games by 16-2 and therefore having to play the lst Seed, Sweden, who was the overwhelming favorite to win the Men's Hockey Gold Medal and had just impressively beaten Canada and the Czech Republic. One of Belarus' players played in the National Hockey League whereas All of Sweden's players did. The Swedes came out Smiling and Relaxed, two and a half hours later they weren't feeling as well. Belarus' goalie was Andrei Mezin, a career minor league goalie who would never make the NHL, Sweden's goalie was the fabled Tommy Salo. But Belarus was leading 2-1 in the 2nd Period when Sweden tied it, in the 3rd Period Belarus was up 3-2 when Mats Sundin, the Swedes' Captain, tied it as by now the Swedes were playing desperately realizing that the game hadn't been going their way. Throughout this Contest the Swedes were shooting constantly at the Belarus Goalie, Andrei Mezin, but with little effect, typically a Swede would wind up and shoot from 25 feet with the puck cracking off Mezin's Pads, Mezin would scoop up the errant shot and give it to a Belarus Player. For the game the Swedes were to take 47 shots with only 3 getting past Mezin, the forever minor league goalie. With 2:24 seconds left in the game Vladimir Kopat of Belarus took a wild 70 foot shot that hit Tommy Salo near his head and trickling over his shoulder, Salo whirled around frantically only to see the puck in his Goal, Belarus was up 4-3. In the 3rd Period Us Crowd had gotten behind Belarus as they had no fans there whereas the Swedes had many, we chanted "Belarus," And "Cute Little Belarus," exhorting them on as we sensed a quite possible upset. The game ended with 4 goals for Belarus and 3 for Sweden, the Belarus Players dropped their sticks and rushed Mezin. Also Belarus had shot suprisingly well against the Swedes, being judicious in their Shot Selection they had made 4 out of their 17 Shots. This Game was played in the U.S. and here we have the Saying, "Every dog........."
Sunday, January 11, 2009
A lot of you people didn't seem very sympathetic to my plight, many of you smirked and even laughed. When I was chosen for "special scrutiny" while standing in that line at the Delta Counter they had no idea what my name was or where I had been recently, I was just some older, blonde guy (probably the only blonde guy on the flight, most of the rest of the passengers were swarthy) who Delta thought they could successfully pick on. At that time they had no idea that I had been in all those Middle Eastern countries and although I was what would have been the likelihood of me being a Terrorist? I think that all the Terrorists are dark Moslems. And if you complain to Delta about this unwarranted bad treatment Delta will sic the FBI on you. Copious notes were taken by Delta at the Athens Airport, what they were doing to me seemed well documented. And you know the names of the FBI Agents and the date that they questioned me, nobody has to take my word for any of this. Delta thought that all this was going to be our little secret, they had no idea that the entire media in the Country would learn of this, ha, ha. This could have been one of your relatives instead of me, they didn't know me from Adam. You, the National Media, every one of you has been proven to be Spineless and Evil due to your being bought off by ABC over the past 2 years into not revealing that Kelly Ripa is a Fairy. You are all Spineless and Evil People and there is no Cure, it's just the way you are. That you are this way bothers you little or not at all. You, the National Media, are endemic of the full-blown deterioration of this Country, and why it's not going to last much longer, it has rotted-out from the Inside. I see all these Mexicans and other Hispanics walking around, the U.S. in its current Incarnation is a Banana Republic and it's really painful for me to see its decline.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Today would have been my Grandmother's, my father's mother, 120th Birthday, the Feast of the Epiphany, she lived to be "90." Of my parents and 3 other grandparents the oldest any of them lived was my mother, "66." Enjoy me while you can. Ted Kaczynski, the Unabomber, is in Supermax in Colorado, and as I understand it is cooped up in a cell 5x12 feet for 23 hours a day. Shouldn't Dr. Kaczynski be treated better than that? Ted has an I.Q. possibly as high as 180 and shouldn't he at least be given constructive work to take advantage of his great intellect, supposedly his PhD Dissertation at Michigan would only have been understood by 10 or 12 people in the country. Why not? Ted has the time, break up the day. The reason that Kaczynski was able to stay at large for 17 years, and it would have been much longer had his own brother not turned him in, was that there was nobody looking for him nearly as smart as himself. On April 28, 2008 I flew from Eleftherios Venizelos Airport in Athens to Boston on Delta, it was supposed to have been JFK in New York but it was congested there due to bad weather and Delta didn't have enough fuel to wait it out, they barely had enough fuel to get to Boston. Delta began processing passengers for Flight DL0l33 leaving for JFK from Athens at 10:35 A.M. on April 28, 2008 at the Delta Counter at 7 A.M. I was standing in this line at 7:20 A.M. and soon was approached by a Delta Employee who told me that I was going to be given "great scrutiny" as she took my Passport and left with it. She brought it back after half an hour with another Delta Employee and they told me that they'd be waiting for me once I had my Boarding Pass and had gone through Passport Control and Airport Security. Once I was through Airport Security these 2 joined by yet 2 more Delta Employees began to ask me about my trip to the Middle East. After Grilling me for half an hour, yet 2 more Employees of Delta came and grilled me even more extensively. I commented that most Terrorists weren't Blonde Guys in their 60's who'd been born in the U.S., that the demographic of Terrorists was hardly that and that they had many better candidates for grilling on this flight than myself. I was the only one of the hundreds to be boarding this full Flight to be treated this way. They ignored what I had said, they then took apart my camera bag and travel bag and took everything in them off to be X-rayed. By the time they got finished with me it was 9:50 A.M. and I had been Needlessly Harassed for two and a half hours. As I was being allowed to go in with the other passengers to wait to board the Plane I told my Harassers, "You haven't seen the last of this." As soon as I got back to Las Vegas I called Delta from the Airport and told them what happened and this "Supervisor" that I spoke with told me that it was TSA that I should complain to and not Delta. I sent in written complaint to TSA and after 6 weeks they wrote back saying that it was Delta and not themselves that I should voice a complaint to. I then wrote a Complaint to Delta and have yet to receive a reply, I sent in my complaint 5 months ago. On September 2, 2008 I heard a loud banging on the door of my apartment, I opened the door and these 2 young guys dressed in very casual clothes, said, "FBI" and one flashed an ID with Badge saying this. I let these 2 in but I was dubious, I was wondering if this was some kind of shakedown, a home invasion. I said, " Don't you guys usually wear suits." One of them said, "This is Las Vegas." This guy was also heavily tatooed, ha, ha. After a bit my fears vanished, I could tell that these were fine young men. They asked me about my trip to the Middle East and I gave them my Itinerary in detail, where I had been on my recent trip. I said, what's this all about, a blonde guy in his 60's, native-born American, goes to the Middle East and the FBI comes to question him, I said, you have nothing better to do? After half an hour these 2 left, they were Joseph M. Gervase and Keith Kelly (I told Kelly that his name sounded like an alias). I actually liked these guys and wish them well. In leaving Gervase sounded sort of ashamed about this as he realized that they had bothered a Citizen for no good reason, Kelly was sort of defensive, in relation to my demographic in regards to Terrorism he said, they're the ones. Delta had had the FBI harass me because they didn't like my complaining to them (a complaint in very civil and "good" language) about my treatment by Delta at the Athens Airport. And how many Man-Hours did the FBI spend on this, half an hour with me, half an hour to get to where I lived, half an hour to go somewhere else afterwards, time spent in preparation for Talking to Me? Wasted Valuable Time of FBI Agents that could have been spent productively in the catching of criminals. That's the United States of America that we live in today in 2009, a Police State, a Third World Country.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
About 9 weeks ago I told my brother Bob in Cleveland of my Telepathic Abilities and he doesn't believe me, and I don't have a Comment yet on any of my 57 previous Blogs, Bob I can understand but What's the Matter with you people? There is no evidence that Helen or Achilles ever existed, Homer's Story is wildly embellished. The only time I ever was on the Strip on New Year's Eve was for the turn of the Millennium. I walked a mile to the Strip from where I lived and enjoyed it a lot, it was just a huge crush of people pushing down the Strip, I did this for half a mile and the Communal Feeling was very mellow. The Casinos in their Great Wisdom shot off Zero Fireworks to bring in the year 2000, Cheapskates. About 30 yards behind me a guy climbed a Utility Pole, fell and died, people were telling me about it at the time, I didn't see it. Once I got home I turned on the TV and saw some drunk guy who did see it being interviewed. It turned out this young guy, who apparently had a degree in engineering from Stanford and was one of their assistant Wrestling Coaches, hadn't just fallen from the Utility Pole, he had grabbed a Power Line and was dead before he hit the asphalt. The tone was that he had thrown his life away, one should know better. In the local newspaper they even mentioned bringing in the Millennium by "Sacrificing the Californian." From Cannakale I went down the coast a bit to Ayvalik, a nice sea town in its own right, and took the Ferry over to the Greek Island of Lesbos, just 17 miles. The guy operating the boat had a bed next to the wheel and seemingly slept for half the trip. So I arrived at Mytilene, the Capitol and found a nice, inexpensive room for 3 nights. The poet Sappho was from Lesbos and wrote of, you know. Lesbos has a hip, young tourist crowd and some nice places to eat and drink, groups of Lesbians often come to Lesbos for Inspiration or whatever. I still say that to be a Lesbian one would need a Lively Imagination. There are many nice Archeological Sites on Lesbos and a couple of very nice Archeological Museums, I can never get enough of these things. There's buses that go all over the Island, fun aplenty. There were 2 Ferry Boats a day to Piraeus, about 12 hours, overnight voyage, cheap and comfortable. Piraeus is the seaport of Athens, I went straightaway to the Bus Terminal and got a bus to Argos. I've been to Athens a zillion times and have been all over Greece but still have places to go there that I haven't been to. Argos is a very pleasant little city and its Theater which is very well-preserved was the largest in the Greek World in the 5th Century, it sat 20,000. From Argos I took the bus to the ruins of Mycenae which are quite extensive and well-preserved, that was an all-day thing and I enjoyed being there. Back to Argos for the night, just maybe 15 miles from Mycenae and then to Athens the next morning. Athens is always very exciting, I stayed at the same hotel that I stayed 4 years before in Omonoia and directly behind the longtime headquarters of the Greek Communist Party, ha, ha, yes, you can see the Hammer and Sickle displayed out front. I was in Athens over their Easter and I was curious if the Communist Headquarters would be open on Easter, being Communists and atheists you'd think they'd make it a point to be open but the Greeks are so lazy that I thought it might be closed, it was open. The National Archeological Museum was closed over the Easter Weekend, it was closed the last time I tried to go there 4 years before, I've been there many times and it's fabulous, my favorite is the bronze statue of Poseidon that they pulled out of the sea and I like the marble statue of the wounded Gallic Warrior, still able to defend himself at least for the moment. Athens's subway is so good you can whiz about easily, went to the Acropolis and Parthenon of course, Lord Elgin did good service by removing the Elgin Marbles from the Parthenon from 1801 to 1805. In 1687 the Venetians bombarded the Parthenon and part of it blew up, there's often been fomentation in Athens' history and the Elgin Marbles have been safe at the British Museum. Since the 2004 Olympics Athens' tourism has increased by 300%. I went to the Temple of Zeus, to the Agora, to Kerameikos, went inside the 1896 Olympic Stadium. I couldn't get inside the Olympic Stadium from the 2004 Olympics but I had been inside there in 2001, you could get inside where they had swimming events. There's always lots of great things to see in Athens, it's one of the best places in the World.
Friday, January 2, 2009
From Bergama I went up the coast a bit to Canakkale from where one can tour the Gallipoli Battlefield and go see the ruins of Troy. I toured Gallipoli the first time that I was in Turkey. The Gallipoli Campaign by the English, French, and Anzacs (Australians and New Zealanders) against the Turks lasted from April 25, 1915 until January, 1916. The Germans had given their Turkish Allies Big Guns to control the Dardanelles to keep the Allies from taking Istanbul and being able to supply Russia through the Black Sea. The Allies failure to do this and the Germans sending Lenin into Russia in a Railcar did knock Russia out of the War (clever tricks). During the Gallipoli Campaign an unknown Lt. Colonel, Mustafa Kemal, came into prominence and became the Turks' inspirational leader. Before the War Turkey was regarded as the "Sick Man of Europe," and most of its Empire was "owned" by French and English Bondholders. Mustafa Kemal could get the Turks to do things that they ordinarily wouldn't do. Being promoted to a Division Commander he told the Turks at one point when they were out of ammunition, "I'm not ordering you to attack, I'm ordering you to die, we'll buy time for our replacements." This desperate effort worked and most of the Turks involved didn't die. Anzac Day, April 25, is a huge holiday in Australia and New Zealand, though the Turks wonder why they'd celebrate a defeat. After the War Turkey won its War of Independence and the Republic of Turkey was established in 1923 with Mustafa Kemal as its 1st President. He wanted a Secular State that had close ties to the West. He latinized the Alphabet, women no longer had to wear the veil because he thought it was stupid, he tried to get the Call to Prayer to be in Turkish and not Arabic, and he often wore a tuxedo. A lot of the Turks are light, Mustafa Kemal had blue eyes. In reference to the many thousands of dead Allies buried in Turkey he said, "Whether a Mehmet or a Tommy, They are Ours." Mustafa Kemal wasn't too Moslem-like, a heavy drinker he died in 1938 at the age of "57," and is revered by the Turks as Ataturk, Father of the Turks. Every time I'm in Turkey I always go to Troy. Excavated by Heinrich Schliemann in the k1870's, it was where Homer said it was. Homer's Troy is the 7th of the 9 Cities on that location, to get to Troy just take a van that goes out there from Canakkale, it's about 15 miles. I'll believe that Schliemann found "Priam's Treasure" in the ruins of Troy when I see Pigs Fly, he found it elsewhere. To be at Troy is very exciting. Achilles slew Hector, refusing his father's, King Priam's, ransom for the return of his Son's Body, Achilles tied Hector's naked body behind his chariot and drove around the City 3 times while lashing his horses. To wander the ruins of Troy is a very good time. Hey, they have a Wooden Horse at the Entrance and you can go inside it, I did this with a bunch of Japanese tourists.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
Take back the Holly and Mistletoe, Silver Bells on Strings..... I could listen to Lisa Layne's version of "All I Want For Christmas is You" all day. I live a mile from the Las Vegas Strip and I just walked outside to see the Fireworks Display at Midnight, it was okay but there was 10 times more of it last year (hard times) and starting this year they shoot them from the top of parking garages or the ground and not from the tops of casinos as in the past, so they're not up in the air as high. I just stayed in, it's very dangerous out there. Back in Ohio one New Year's Eve I went to a Party with a girl I had been seeing and I was driving around afterwards and drove into a ditch and had to be towed out. Hey, it was just 2 wheels in and it was just a little ditch, I didn't get a ticket or DUI or anything, could have happened to anybody. So one has to be wary on New Year's Eve lest those ditches come running out at you. From Istanbul I took a bus to Ankara, the Capitol of Turkey. Buses in Turkey are cheap and there's lots of 'em, you can go anywhere and quickly. A city of 4 million, Ankara and the region have been ruled by many different peoples, the name comes from the Greek word for "anchor." The Museum of Anatolian Civilizations is wonderful, the Mausoleum that is the resting place of Mustafa Kemal (Ataturk, that is Father of the Turks), Anitkabir, is really good. And there's the Roman Bath and Column of Julian and other archeological treasures to observe. Sort of in the middle of everything is the equestrian statue of Ataturk, I was told by this guy who had been an attache at the American Embassy in the late 50's that he was out on the town with these guys one night and one of them wanted to see the hanging of this Russian Spy from the neck of this Statue at 4 A.M. He said that the Turks just shoved this guy off and let him dangle without a hood, he said that he was sorry that he had let himself be talked into seeing this. From Ankara I took a bus to Bergama where there's the ruins of Pergamon (Pergamum). Pergamon which had been Greek was taken by the Romans in 133 B.C. and was the birthplace of Galen, the famous Roman Physician, in 128 A.D. Under the Greeks Pergamon had a library of 200,000 volumes that rivaled that of Alexandria and it was in Pergamon that parchment was invented. Pergamon became the Capitol of Roman Asia. There's 2 different locations for the ruins and you have to hire a taxi to take you there and wait (good business for the locals) and this was $45 for 5 hours, money well spent. You can see the ruins of the famous Medical School, Library, the Altar of Zeus, the Theatre, and other goodies. When you go to Turkey you can do as I did and buy a Souvenir Shirt which is the Turkish Flag, a White Star and Crescent on Red.