Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Smacks of Old Fart Wednesday- Proud To Be An Old Fart

A couple of weeks ago a friend of mine named Larry sent me an email that casts a whole new light on things that "Smack of Old Fart." Larry's email contained identifiable actions that the author says are characteristic of "Old Farts." I wasn't too excited about this at first, but, after reading the email, I immediately jumped to my feet and said, "Yes! I am an Old Fart and proud of it!" I hope that you will feel the same way, and for the most part, you don't need to be a card carrying member of AARP or have a Medicare Card to qualify as an "Old Fart."

• Old Farts are easy to spot at sporting events; during the playing of the National Anthem. Old Farts remove their caps and stand at attention and sing without embarrassment. They know the words and believe in them.
• Old Farts remember World War II, Pearl Harbor, Normandy and Hitler. They remember the Atomic Age, the Korean War, The Cold War, the Jet Age and the Moon Landing. They remember the 50 plus Peacekeeping Missions from 1945 to 2005, not to mention Vietnam.
• If you bump into an Old Fart on the sidewalk he will apologize. If you pass an Old Fart on the street, he will nod and tip his cap to a lady. Old Farts trust strangers and are courtly to women.
• Old Farts hold the door for the next person and always, when walking, make certain the lady is on the inside for protection.
• Old Farts get embarrassed if someone curses in front of women and children and don't like any filth or dirty language on TV or in the movies.
• Old Farts have moral courage and personal integrity. They seldom brag unless it's about their children or grandchildren.
• It's the Old Farts who know our great country is protected, not by politicians, but by the young men and women serving their country.

In my opinion the above not only "Smacks of Old Fart" but also "Smacks of Old Fart Pride." I think we could start a movement here. If folks can occupy Wall Street, I think we can demonstrate some "Old Fart Pride." What do you think?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:Danbury Dr,Mansfield,United States

Monday, July 30, 2012

Media Monday-The Olympics, of Course

This post will be a few observations of the Olympics. It is just going to be some of my thoughts. Be free to just skip it, because my thoughts are not Earth shattering. However, I would love for you to chime in with your observations too.

1. I have enjoyed having a lot of coverage of the Olympics. I have watched a few things, I would not have seen before. Some people seem to be upset that they know results before the evening telecasts, but haven't they known this in past Olympics? The last great secret coverage I can remember was when the USA hockey team beat Russia (The Miracle on Ice). I must say that was exciting, and if we could go back there, I would be all for it. But in this day and age, that is not going to happen.

2. Barry wants the Olympics to go back to all non-professional athletes. There was something special about those times, too. But, Barry, that ship has also sailed.

3. I love the up-close and personal moments and hope to see a lot more. I really don't want to see the USA gymnast's parents watching their child perform anymore though. I am sure some network is already filming "Gymnast Moms."

4. Does anyone else feel like China is doing too well in swimming? They are so much faster than other countries, kind of brings to mind the East Germans and Russians in the olden days. I wonder if they are drug testing that 16 year old swimmer?

4. Since the gymnastics has been on a lot, I am sure you have seen the color of that gym. I love bright and colorful, but YIKES! A little pepto-bismol pink goes a long way and that is a lot of pepto-bismol pink. Did I read each event is color-coded? I like that idea. Color coding is always, good, but, there are a lot of colors out there, London. Plus the colors of the Olympic rings were chosen because they are colors that can be found in every countries' flag. Now that was a good thought.

Look at those lines- that should have been logo inspiring
5. The Logo and Font- If you are trying to brand something, like, let's say, the Olympic Games you are hosting, wouldn't you want to pick a memorable logo? You would want something that just pops into your head, like an apple with a bite out of it, a target, a swoosh, golden arches. Couldn't someone have made a logo out of London bridge, Big Ben , one of the Queen's hats, or just use Kate's face. Hey, maybe Pippa's bottom! Anyway, I am not impressed with the logo, and I would definitely have the Union Jack in it or the lines of the Union Jack, but maybe that is a no-no. I don't know the rules of creating the logo.

That said, I don't care for the Olympic font either. But, I will say, I would recognize it somewhere else. If that was what they were going for, they have achieved a different look with it, just not a pleasant one.
I find it a little swastika looking.

Also, I don't have photos of the logo and font on my blog, because London does NOT want anyone else using them. That is probably mainly for people making money on them, but I don't really like them enough to add them anyway.

6. I love the Olympics and London would have been a great place to attend the games. I must learn to plan ahead!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Under the Sea

In an attempt to NOT make you feel as though you are at your friends’ house watching their family vacation slide show, I have condensed our hundreds of photos to sixteen for today. For today, may be the pivitol phrase.
On our trip, we were very fortunate to have several sea turtle encounters. First of all, we were able to see the turtles feeding near the beach while snorkeling. This enabled Ben and Scarlett to see them. (Thanks to Chris loaning us his underwater camera equipment, Barry was able to photograph them.)

There were other sea dwellers there. 

Barry and Brett had their diving certifications so they went deeper and saw more coral and larger turtles than the rest of us. They even found a lion fish. I am glad that particular fish was in the deep.

The sea turtles were laying eggs every night, too. As you might suspect nothing involving turtles is very fast. Plus, as the family also learned, the turtle “experts” were interesting in their own way. Shannon remarked, “everyone out on the beach at night watching for the turtles is an expert.” What makes someone an expert? We concluded:
  1. You must have a red light only.
  2. You need to speak in a whisper.
  3. You need to be very patient.
  4. You need to have a walkie-talkie.
  5. A tee-shirt that says “No Tocar” (no touching) would be perfect, but not necessary.
  6. The real experts actually have other better qualifications, I just don’t know them.
We had one flashlight with a red light. That was where our expertise began and ended.
That did not stop Brett though. He went out every night and by the end of the trip, he was helping the real turtle expert. 
The children were really more interested in the hermit crabs. Hermit crab races are always a huge hit in the evenings. Ben, Scarlett, and Ava spent any free time capturing hermit crabs, evaluating their speed, and planning a winning strategy. Of course there were the inevitable pinched fingers that resulted in blood curdling screams that convinced parents their child had just been eaten by a shark. But that did not dissuade them at all. As you can see, they captured a few. 

The races were so much fun for them, this was the reaction, when said races were deemed over.

The next to last evening, Brett, Shannon, Ben and Scarlett, decided to search further down the beach for the most magnificent of hermit crabs after the rest of us went to bed. 
Soon after, Brett came running in to tell us there were baby turtles. Out we went. 
Ben had spied what he thought was the fastest of all hermit crabs heading to a porch. In actuality, it was a newly hatched baby sea turtle. (When they hatch they go toward the light. If people don’t have red lights on the beach side of their residents or leave their lights on, it confuses the babies). Instead it was five baby sea turtles totally disoriented. A “turtle expert” (he had the red light and walkie talkie, anyway) let Ben and Scarlett carry the five turtles to the water and release them.

I named them, Ben, Scarlett, Ava, Lucy, and Cora, even though no one asked them to be named. 
Ben is on his way to being an environmentalist, I believe. We will have to get him a red light, walkie talkie, and a “No Tocar” shirt.
The next morning the actual turtle specialist came by and asked Brett to show him where the nest was so he could count the egg shells. We don’t really know who the other man was, but Brett was now an official helper (which means, he, too, will need a walkie talkie).

But, most importantly, five little turtles were saved. 

( Some of you receive this blog via email. Please let me know if you no longer wish to receive it. You can bookmark it and look yourself if ever you wish. I don't want to force it on anyone. Thanks.)

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Smacks of Old Fart Wednesday

You know what Smacks Of Old Fart?  Floaters! Not like floating in the ocean. No, I’m talking about the kind old farts see in our eye(s) or head while other people around us do not see anything at all. Have you ever spotted a small speck, dot, or squiggle floating in the air, only to have it flit away when you tried to look at it directly?
Last week I had a minor procedure performed by a local ophthalmologist. A little YAG laser treatment to clear up some scar tissue on the back of a previous cataract surgery. I know, that SOOF too but really this is a quite common and very minor procedure. Afterwards I had 4-6 fuzzy, dark floating spots were visible. They call these “floaters”.
Eye floaters are spots in your vision. Eye floaters may look like black or gray specks, strings or cobwebs that drift about when you move your eyes. Most of the time people learn to live with eye floaters and ignore them. And they often improve over time. Only rarely do benign eye floaters become bothersome enough to consider treatment. Mine went away after 6 days just like the doctor said they would.
Okay, here is the SOOF part.  Jan & I were at a restaurant in the airport,t and I kept swatting at flies. The flies were not there. She kept laughing at me. Outside I kept thinking I was seeing birds fly by. If you know me you probably know I’m a bird watcher. I know that SOOF too but I started my birding hobby when I was eight years old. 
So, if you see an old fart swatting at “nothing” be understanding. It could and probably will be you next.
Floaters like this.
Not like this.


Monday, July 23, 2012

Tech Tuesday-For A Three Hour Tour

Just sit right back and you'll hear a tale,
A tale of a fateful trip
That started from this tropic port
Aboard this tiny ship. 


This is an odd Tech Tuesday and starts about a month ago.  I mentioned to Jan that a new iPhone case had come out called a LifeProof case

(I later found out they had been out awhile and I am just behind the curve in my techi-ness). I told her I would be happy to test one out and write a blog post if LifePoof sent her a free case since she has such a large iPhone user following. Little did I know she had already gotten me one for my birthday. Awesome for me. The case came with instructions that were made much easier to follow by videos found at various Internet addresses that were included in the package. I finally got it on my iPhone after about an hour of videos and waiting through the empty water test.  Sounds odd but buy one, watch the video, and you'll get it. 
Well, I had been a chicken about throwing my LifeProof encased iPhone into a pool or the dog dish, which are some of the places my past cell phones had been.  I just didn't want to have to buy a new phone in case the case wasn't actually LifeProof. 
Fast forward to our family trip to Akumal, Mexico. We had gone fishing on Monday. We didn't catch anything so it was fine that I did not take my phone. We booked a trip for Thursday afternoon. We, being my brother in law, Miles, and I. We were certain that fish were in our future so I took my iPhone. I figured that a little salt water would be nothing for the LifeProof. 
The voyage started as most others do, blue skies and slightly choppy waters.  

Our crew of two, Abraham, the captain and his mate, Sergio, were keen to put us on some big Mahi Mahi. Not much happened until I turned east to see lightning out across the Caribbean. In broken Spanish I asked Sergio, "esta lluvia?"  (is it raining?). "Maybe in Cozumel" he replied. Within five minutes, I took some pictures of Miles as we headed back to Akumal Bay, just in case, with only the most vicious storm Mother Nature could punish us with between our dinghy and dry land.

Abraham asked if I wanted to store my iPhone in the dry box. Of course, I responded, "no necessito. es waterproof."
Things got pretty grim after that.
A mayday cell phone call was made by Abraham.  But it wasn’t until the life jackets were handed to Miles and I and Abraham and Sergio donned them, that I became truly concerned.  ten to fifteen foot swells, sideways rain and 50 mph winds threw our little fishing boat around and around on the sea. If it had been a full on hurricane, I am certain it would have been a Cat 5.  Since we had been trolling for Mahi Mahi, the throttle became stuck at trolling speed, which caused us to be tossed about for about 45 mins. For a least a few minutes there, when I couldn't see Miles just a few feet away due to the wall of stinging and resilient rain, I wondered if we would ever make it back.  But then I remembered that when death creeps around the corner when your not ready, just tell it "Not today, my friend." 
When we eventually made it back to shore, we were soaked from head to toe by the rain, wind and sea. Slowly, I lifted my iPhone from my chest pocket and saw that it too had survived the treacherous spoils of the sea thanks to my LifeProof case.  Had it not, I would not have been able to draft this post so quickly after our harrowing adventure. 
So you should buy one. I am fully convinced it would have filled a crack in the hull of our boat had that been necessary. The case is that tough. It may even save your life someday, or at least allow you to record your last moments for some else to find.  
Jacob C. Esparza

Note from Jan: LifeProof now makes a lifejacket for the cover. Maybe I should get Jacob one for his next birthday. 

Another note from Jan: This is a really odd Tech Tuesday, because I published it on Monday!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Summer Days are....

Days that begin with coffee on the beach...

sharing some banana peel with the iguana...

Include a search for hermit crabs...

A dip in the ocean...

A snack,

and a cuddly towel,

Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Smacks of Old Fart- guest post

I have a good friend (Dave) who lives in St. Louis, MO, and is a follower of Smacks of Old Fart. Last week he sent me some old fart fodder on his wife (Prudy) and gave me permission to submit it to Jan's blog. So, here it is, a paraphrased version of the story, courtesy of Dave and Prudy Bertolino.

I was leaving the house early one morning while Prudy was still in bed. I looked for my car keys in their usual place but couldn't find. After turning the house upside-down, I gave up the search and went to the drawer where we keep a spare set of keys. I started to leave the house again, with the spare key in hand, when I decided to grab a bottle of water out of the refrigerator. I opened the door, and there it was...MY set of keys sitting atop a sandwich in a sandwich bag.

You see, it was Prudy's day to work at the Circle of Concern at church and she had prepared a sandwich to take for her lunch; not wanting to forget the sandwich when she left home, she thought she would put "her" keys on top of the sandwich bag in the frig.

There is probably something deeply Freudian and disturbing as to why Prudy put MY keys on the sandwich instead of her own, but I hate to go there. Let's just chalk it up to a Smacks of Old Fart event!

NOTE: Thanks, Dave. That was good. But, I don't know if that really Smacks of Old Fart, or just smacks of Prudy. You know, I would never call Prudy and old fart...but you on the other hand certainly qualify since you are much, much older than I.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, July 16, 2012

Media Monday

Due to this

And this

There is no Media Monday today.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, July 13, 2012

The Family VaCa

This summer we will be going to Akumal for a family vacation. We have been going there for thirty three years. Our children were little bitty when we started going there.

Two years ago when we were there with the kids and grandkids, this is what they looked like.



Poppy flying a kite with the girls.

Ben swimming in Half Moon Bay.

This is what parents look like when they arrive back home.  (A tired, Joanie)
 Been there!

It will be fun to compare photos after this year's trip.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

July is Full of Birthdays

Yesterday was this little girl's birthday.

She used to have a pool party almost every year. This year, she decided to spend her day with this little one.

Because our little one now has a little one. Again time has flown. Happy Birthday, Michelle!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Smacks of Old Fart Wednesday

Jan and I went to IHop the other evening. We just wanted to have breakfast for supper. No that’s not what Smacks OF Old Fart. Jan pointed out to me they had a “senior menu” with cheaper prices. I was trying to compare the entrees from the main menu page to the entrees on the senior page. Here is where the SOOF situation began. 
  1. My glasses were in the car so I couldn’t really read the menu too well. I was squinting so I asked my wonderful wife to read some of the descriptions to me.  
  2. I was having trouble telling the difference between the “Split Decision Breakfast” and the “Rise ‘N Shine Breakfast”.  
  3. Jan had to point out that the only difference was the price. 
  4. I still almost ordered the wrong one. Jan saved me.
  5. They did not card me. How did the waiter know I didn’t have a fake id?
  6. The bill took me by surprise. I thought I was undercharged. Got into a discussion with the cashier. It turns out they gave me the senior price; the second senior meal free (that was for my SOOF spouse). Then another 10% off for being a senior. Who knew? I would have made a fake id a long time ago if I had known. I don’t think we could have cooked this meal at home for less money. Also, we didn’t have to clean up.
  7. The only thing that kept this meal from really being a SOOF experience.  It was 7:30 PM. Most old farts eat supper between 4-5PM. 

ps: You only have to be 55 yrs. old to qualify!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

This Weeks Free App & Ben is Eight!

Just so you won't think I have totally altered my plans, here is a little tech tip. For you Angry Bird fans, this weeks free App is Angry Birds Seasons. Get it while it is free.

Now, this is really important!
Ben turned eight years old last week. Eight! I can't believe it. Shannon made him a Bass cake because he had spent last week fishing with his grandfather. The cake was perfect until someone accidentally hit  it with her finger trying to get a photograph that did it justice. That person smudged it right at the first gill mark and did not tell Shannon, hoping she wouldn't notice. But notice she did. Yikes, mother-in-laws are so much trouble.

The boys had fun and the cake was yummy. 

One, Two, Three...


Poppy, Ben, and Jama

Dad, Ben, Mom, and Scarlett

May all your birthdays be filled with this much joy, Ben!