Reasons America & Delaware Are Still Great 2016 Edition

Many people in America today are facing an impossible choice.  We call this Election Day.  I am choosing to spend the day looking at all that is good about America and more specifically the state I live in, Delaware.  No matter what happens today, we can’t let anyone take away the spirit of what makes us Americans.  We have liberties we often take for granted.  Beyond the politics of it all, we all should want the best for each other, especially the children.  We have so much talent in this country.  Each mind is a unique and wonderful creation of beauty and grace. In Delaware, we have people doing things no one hears about, every single day. We have children who have so many gifts. We have stories of hope and inspiration. As a friend of mine said on Facebook the other day, we are more than this election.

Not Today

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Last night, I watched a movie released last summer called “Me Before You”.  The movie dealt with the basic eventualities facing human beings: life and death.  Without giving away the outcome of the movie, here is the basic premise of the movie based on the book by Jojo Moyes:

Will Traynor is struck by a motorcycle and becomes paralyzed from the neck down.  Traynor is deeply depressed and in a great deal of physical pain and anguish afterwards.  He was a very adventurous and daring man before this.  Having gone through many caretakers who were not able to deal with the troubled man, his parents hire Lou Clark, a woman from a low-income London family who does not subscribe to the status quo and is her own woman.  She doesn’t care how others view her at all.

After months of Traynor doing the same things he did with his other caretakers, eventually Clark is able to get Traynor to come out of his depression and smile.  The two form a deep bond.  Clark soon discovers her boyfriend is unable to deal with her passion for helping Traynor.  Meanwhile, Clark discovers Traynor told his parents he wants to end his life at a Swiss clinic in six months as he no longer has the will to live with his condition.  Clark makes it her mission in life to get Traynor to change his mind.

This is a story about love and sacrifice in its purest form.  Both characters changed because of their interaction with each other.  By the end of the story, they are not the same people.  Traynor begins to experience life again through Clark’s eyes.  Clark wrestles with what is best for Traynor: what she wants or what he wants.

This is a movie about a person with a disability.  Many disability advocates spoke out against the movie.  They felt what Traynor wanted to do was a cop-out and could give the wrong message to those afflicted with paralysis.  Is it considered “death with dignity” if that death is not imminent?  The movie talks a great deal about Traynor’s suffering and screams in the night, but does not show those moments of suffering.  It does show incidents where Traynor suffers from high fevers and a hospitalization.  The viewer is left with the impression Traynor suffers immensely from his disability.  Choosing the moment of our death is a question of faith and belief.  Many feel that is not our decision but that of God.  Others feel it is murder.  I don’t have the answers to those questions.  But it got me thinking, about life and death.  Do we embrace today or do the events of life determine who we are?

 

*Photo by Courtesy of Warner Bros. Picture – © 2016 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. and Metro-Goldwin-Mayer Pictures Inc.

 

 

Intermission

If you may have noticed, I haven’t been writing as much lately.  I’ve been on an intermission of sorts.  Life stuff.  And fun stuff (for me at least).  I’ve been catching up on some reading and listening to a lot of music.  Things I used to do a lot before I started blogging.  I just need to wind down at times.  I’ve pretty much been on the go for over two years with education and I really don’t want to burn out.  So I’m taking some time off.  I’ll still try to get some stuff up everyday, but nothing to in-depth.  Unless something big comes my way.  Then I will get that up fast!

My wife and I cleaned out our garage today.  My car was filled with stuff we donated to Good Will.  I had to clean out my gutters when I saw weeds growing out of them in a couple of areas.  While I was doing that, a wicked wind blew green leaves all over the place.  I thought I might lose some trees on the edge of our property, but walnuts are very sturdy.

TV winds down for me in the summer.  Only a few shows I’m watching now: Game of Thrones, Preacher and Outcast.  The season finale of The Americans is on tonight.  I will definitely be watching that!  Like those who watch it, I think it is one of the best shows on TV now.  Having lived through the 1980s it is very spot-on with the rendition of the early part of that decade.  They even had a bunch of characters watching “The Day After” in one episode this season.  Kids today don’t live with nuclear threats like I did when I was a kid/teenager.  That movie scared the crap out of millions of Americans.  It came out in 1983 on a Sunday night.  I’ve watched it a few times since.

I was listening to Vivaldi’s Four Seasons earlier today.  The Summer trio are my favorite.  Highs and lows, with a crashing crescendo at the end!  Then I vegged out to some Imagine Dragons and later a band you’ve most likely forgotten about or never heard of called Gene Loves Jezebel.

I’m just blabbing here, about nothing specific.  My son has been watching Arrow and telling me all about it.  I’m a huge Flash fan, but I’ve been stuck on the first season of Arrow for a couple of years.  If you haven’t guessed, I’m a huge comic book fan.  In terms of shows and movies, Marvel gets the movies right and DC does really well with the tv shows.  I still haven’t seen Captain America: Civil War yet.  It is on my soon-to-do list.  Along with a million other things.

I’m kind of at a transition point.  My son is exactly where he needs to be with education.  His battles are a thing of the past for the most part so much my anger is fading.  That doesn’t mean I don’t care about education overall, I just don’t have that immediate connection to it I used to have.  I’ll still do the research and the digging and the listening.  But I am really trying to leave emotion out of it.  If anything, I’ve gotten more sarcastic with my writing.  I’ve been involved with this mess in Delaware so long and so intensely, nothing really shocks me much anymore.  But we are entering unchartered territory with Jack leaving next year and the upcoming elections.  At the time of this writing, Hillary is the Democrat nominee and Donald is the Republican.  I really can’t stand them both.  I was really rooting for Bernie, but his age concerned me a lot.  I don’t like the fact that both the frontrunners are two people who I’ve heard about for over twenty years and neither of them ever impressed me.  It’s kind of depressing actually.  I will fully admit it is very hard for me to not want to blast certain people involved in education.  I see them doing some of the same things over and over.  But it’s the everyday people I’m sometimes hard on, and I’m starting to feel bad about that.  My intention isn’t to hurt anyone.  I’ve always figured if you are going to attend meetings about education you are most likely a public person.  Even if they are “secret” or non-public meetings.  I know I upset a couple of people two weeks ago and I feel bad about that.  I’m going to try to be nicer to people on here.   I know, I’ve said that before and then two weeks later I was cussing out some folks.  When I have posts like that, I’m not going to publish them right away.  Sometimes the best thing to do is sleep on it and not go by the moment.

Alright, enough out of me.  For those reading this, I’m sure this was not the kind of post you wanted to read.  Everyone always loves the scoop (or the supposed scoop).  But even bloggers need a time out once in a while!

Things Are Getting Bad For Burger Girl Between Mud, Mosquitos and Crop Dusters…

Burger Girl is having a horrible, terrible, no good day.  It actually started last night with the band Chiddy Bang.

Today I learned Chiddy Bang wants us to make some f-ing nOIIIIse. That was irritating.

It sounds like someone is getting a case of the crankies!!!!  I’m sure she had a good nights sleep….

Nothing like half a dozen car alarms being your morning wake-up call. Frowny face!

Oh I forgot about the crop duster that’s been buzzing us this morning. Add that to my list of wake-up calls…

And we have this exclusive announcement from Burger Girl:

(expletive deleted) Dover mosquitoes I kid you not they bit me through my shirt and blanket and chair. On my back. How does that even happen?!?!?!

I like to call it a combination of summer, rain, and working 3 days in ptomaine tavern.  Burger Girl even sent pics (thanks for that B.G.!)

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Yikes!  I’m going to guess Firefly didn’t mention wearing white sneakers may not be the best idea!  I did ask Burger Girl if she brought any OFF bug spray, and she said yeah, That happened after I applied the OFF.  One of the guys said it’s like we used ON instead of OFF lol

Straying a bit away from the conversation at hand, I did ask Burger Girl if this guy came to visit her:

She said no, but she did see this:

She did get a shot of what appears to be a witch and a nun?????

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This actually brought back memories for me.  Not the witch and the nun, but the time I saw Imagine Dragons during the nice and not too hot day during the first Firefly back in 2012.  The one where the audience wasn’t 90,000.  Try to find me:

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Burger Girl is still in good spirits though, despite the mud bleach on her shoes, the special Delaware mosquitoes drilling into her sapping the remaining strength she has left, and the sheer fatigue of flipping burgers incessantly, non-stop, and trying to figure out if that is some new instrument or the sound of hamburger grease embedding itself into her very soul.

FireflyBurgerGirl

But I do wonder about her utter disregard for company resources….

Me and my bff….the open refrigerator truck. We’re all too short to close the door…

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As they say, to be continued…

Imagine Dragons New Song “Shots”

Sounds to me like the band is channeling some mid 1980’s Outfield on that song!

Imagine Dragons has a new album coming out on February 24th called “Smoke And Mirrors”.  They have released three singles so far, “I Bet My Life”, “Gold” and “Shots”.   Two of them are great songs, but “Gold” doesn’t do it for me.

This band has come a long way since I saw them on a side stage at the Firefly Festival back in 2012.  Even though they only played about six songs, it was one of the best concerts I’ve ever seen.  Even though they have hit it big, they are still willing to experiment.  I can’t wait to hear what the rest of the album sounds like.

Back when I first started listening to them, I heard a rumor the name Imagine Dragons is an anagram.  When I found out what it actually means, I was somewhat shocked.  I won’t tell you what it is, but can you figure it out?

I can’t listen to “Demons” without thinking about the time my mom passed away.  I used to wonder what she would think of me when she did pass and she could see everything.  Sounds weird, but don’t we all wonder that sometimes when our loved ones pass away?

The first time I heard them was “It’s Time”.  I found a few more of their songs and liked what I heard.  They were the opening band on the first Saturday at the inaugural Firefly Festival.  I was within the first five rows, and the band started playing “Round And Round”.  “On Top of the World” got the crowd going.  They set the pace for everyone else to follow that day.  I know “Radioactive” is their biggest song, but they will be around for a long time.