Thursday, January 31, 2008
DiPietro's letter states:
I am sick and tired of Republicans constantly beating up on Gov. Martin O'Malley for raising taxes by $1.2 billion. They forget to say that O'Malley inherited $1.7 billion deficit from Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. who spent money he did not have, and ran up the deficit.
This is extremely disingenuous to say the least. I will agree that Republicans are beating up on O'Malley, some of it unjustly. However, neither party has been forthcoming on the issue of the budget. There is no real cooperation in Annapolis and politicians are playing off of the emotions of their constituents to push their agenda.
What Mr. DiPietro fails to mention is that the majority of the budget that O'Malley inherited and that Ehrlich ran up were attributable to mandatory funding requirements, such as the Thorton Bill (mandatory education spending). Ehrlich did not put Thorton in place, nor should he receive the blame for its contribution to the increase in the budget.
Additionally, he implies that Erhlich's spending left O'Malley with a deficit. He fails to mention that O'Malley inherited a structural deficit, which is hardly the same as being left with a huge credit card bill. A structural deficit is when projected spending will not be covered by projected revenue intakes. In fact, O'Malley inherited a structural deficit created by required spending that was passed by several previous administrations.
Finally, Mr. DiPietro says:
The budget cuts and tax increases O'Malley proposed is to cover the wild spending of the Ehrlich era.
Again, Mr. DiPietro is being disingenuous and assuming that the readers are mostly a bunch of dumb asses. If this was the case, O'Malley would not have increased the Maryland budget beyond what was required to cover the structural deficit left by the Ehrlich administration.
O'Malley freely admits that taxes were increased to cover the budget deficit and to invest in the future of the state. Money will be used for transportation and education, among other things.
To say that O'Malley increased taxes to cover pay for the party is dishonest.
Vincent DiPietro needs to apologize to the readers of The Gazette for submitted such blatantly false accusations and for pushing his one-sided view of politics upon us. He's either a very bad story teller or he's one of the most misinformed politicians in the state.
Unfortunately, the Baltimore Sun is the only game in town. If you want the news, you read The Sun.
So I am reading today and I am appalled at the quality of two articles. My third grader would have caught these mistakes. Perhaps the spell-checker and grammar checker were down yesterday.
In the article "Repeal of tax law being considered" by Timothy B. Wheeler, you see:
About 42 percent of the homeowners to whom assessment notices were maiiled at the end of last year have filed applications for the homestead tax credit, said C. John Sullivan Jr.,
In the sports section, we read the article "It's not Angelos' fault" by Roch Kubatko and Jeff Zrebiec and see:
Asked whether Angelos were responsible for nixing a deal, MacPhail responded, "No."
Perhaps I am wrong and Peter Angelos has multiple personalities granting him permission to refer to himself in the plural.
Shame on the Baltimore Sun for putting such crap into print. I wiil know tolurate there lack of attension to detale any morr!!! morr!!!
Quick shout out to my son who turns 6 years old today! Happy Birthday!!!
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
What makes the case ironic is that the victim's family wanted the death penalty for Morris, but Judge Manck decided that he would not allow Morris to be sentenced to the death penalty so as to give the victim's family closure.
Rumors spread through the court system when someone reporting spotting Judge Manck receiving an envelope full of money from an undercover ACLU member. The ACLU was supportive of Morris and were delighted that he practiced his free speech rights during the trial when he berated the guards with profanity and gave the finger to the Wroten's family, which included Wroten's four daughters aged 7 to 13.
One can only image what it will take to get the death penalty in Maryland. It's now okay to murder regular citizens. It's okay to murder a corrections officer. Do you think murdering a judge or the governor would land one on death row in Maryland? Somehow I think that would be "different".
Monday, January 28, 2008
Another person was beaten on an MTA bus this weekend. This has become such commonplace that the story barely made the front page of the Maryland section of the Baltimore Sun.
Apparently 2 youths beat a 19 year old Towson man in Towson. The Baltimore City police provided an extensive description of the assailants. They describe the 2 youths as male. If you see 2 "males", these may the perpetraitors.
Now, while violence on our city's public transportation is a horrific crime, not only against the victim, but against our society as a whole, one has to ask yourself, "What the hell was this dude doing on public transportation?" It is now common knowledge that the highly identifiable "males" of Baltimore City like to beat up patrons of public transportation.
People that ride public transportation during non-rush hours are either incredibly stupid or looking for a fight. For the incredibly stupid, the MTA and the Baltimore City Police Department have already shown that they are not interested in the safety of the public.
Baltimore City prosecutors dropped charges against several perpetraitors over the weekend. They insinuated that there was no proof that the victim didn't, in fact, smash her face against the feet and fists of the alleged defendants.
Additionally, it appears that as a matter of public policy, MTA buses turn off their video cameras when crimes occur in order to not be held accountable for the crimes that they do not report. Therefore, there really is NO evidence that this crime even occurred. I suspect that this is a policy initiated by former Baltimore mayor Martin O'Malley. If less crimes are reported, then obviously crime is going down.
On a side note, Sheila Dixon's office did not say that this crime could have been prevented.
Friday, January 25, 2008
Sorry for the lack of posts this week. I was stricken with the O'Malley virus. My daughter had it first, then my wife, my mother-in-law, then me.
What is the O'Malley virus you ask? It starts off with a mild nauseous feeling. After a few hours it turns to wretched vomiting and doesn't stop for hours. After you've lost 6% of your weight, you start convincing yourself that this illness was not actually an illness, but a remedy to your previous problems. You lay around for several more days exhausted and in pain, so nothing gets done. But you know that you've invested in your priorities for the future and it will be alright.
New York Times Endorsement
For the first time in 7 Presidential elections, the New York Times has not endorsed Satan for the Democratic nomination. Instead, they nominated Hillary Clinton, who previously was a close advisor of Mr. Lucifer. Some analysts wonder if there has been a shake-up in hell and wonder who truly is in charge of evil deeds.
On the Republican side, they nominated centrist John McCain, the most liberal of the Republican candidates. They praised McCain for being the only Republican candidate who agrees with most of the Democrats, but criticized him for his occasional agreements with conservative principals, which may make him unfit for being a President.
In an effort to keep electricity rates affordable as promised during his gubernatorial campaign, O'Malley and his appointees at the Public Service Commission have agreed to raise electricity rates for the third time since O'Malley took office.
In a related note, in a continuing effort to control government spending, the Public Service Commission will receive a 28% raise in their salary. This will ensure that they retain competent individuals with industry experience who have never worked with public utilities. Public Service Commissioner Steve Larson said he supports O'Malley's decision to raise his salary.
Pay For Grades
Baltimore City Schools are contemplating paying students for passing tests. In a surprising development, 100% of students are in favor of this idea. The way it works is that if a student fails an assessment test, but then retakes the test and improves their grade by 20%, then they get $110.
Any dumb 13 year-old can quickly figure out that you do as crappy as you can the first time. Then you retake the test and hopefully pass. Even the smart students will see the incentive to fail the first time. Funny how an incentive to pass a test will have the immediate opposite effect - every student will want to fail the first time. I suspect that O'Malley will soon be replacing School Board members with members of the Public Service Commission. It's for the children.
Friday, January 18, 2008
So now to last weekend. My back starts to hurt. It's a bit uncomfortable, but nothing that I can't grin and bear. However, as the week went on, the pain got worse. Usually the pain got worse as the day went on. However, today the pain was there when I woke up. As the day went on, it did get worse, but since it started off bad, it just got unbearable. I took 2 Advil at work, though I would have liked 2 glasses of Drambuie . By 10 o'clock, I had had enough. I called the doctor.
The doctor took me at 11:45, which unfortunately, meant that I had to leave work early on a Friday. Boo-hoo. I arrived at the office and waited about 15 minutes. By then I had to pee really bad. After the vitals, I went to the bathroom. Mental note - remind the doctor that there's a dead skunk somewhere in that bathroom.
The doctor made me bend all over the place. He pushed on my muscles and stretched me in ways that even a woman in labor probably wouldn't have accomplished. Finally he says, "I'll need a urine sample." Um, there's one already going down the drain if you can catch it!
He gave me a glass of water and I waited 10 minutes. I finally gave him his sample and everything came back normal. He then sent me off to get an x-ray.
I arrive at the x-ray place about 1pm. After taking my information, a hoard of old people arrive. All are talking loud and asking, "What did she say???" I felt like I was jockeying for position at the Horn and Horn Buffet at 4pm. They finally call me back, do the x-rays and tell me that the doctor will get the results on Monday or Tuesday. Great! My back will love waiting!
I then rush off to Wal-Mart to fill my prescription. I don't know why I went there. There are other pharmacies in the area. I guess the pain was taking over. Now I'm jockeying in line with the other elderly who didn't get the message to go get x-rays today. Wal-Mart is interspersed with other unemployed hill-billies and random fat people. What draws fat people to Wal-Mart?
So here I am. It's 10pm. I took my medication. But I'm still in pain. It hurts to sit. It hurts to walk. It's uncomfortable to lay down. If my wife offered to jump my bones, I might have to reject her proposition. You know I must be in pain. Hopefully all will be better tomorrow.
Thursday, January 17, 2008
We settled with State Farm on Tuesday. They said that I could have the rental truck until Wednesday. It was really nice. It was a 2007 white Grand Cherokee Laredo. The gas mileage sucked. It had one of those digital displays. I was constantly monitoring the mileage to get it higher. However, it only went lower. It ended up being about 15.4 miles per gallon over the 3 weeks that I had it.
Anyway, Enterprise Rental called my house on Wednesday and wanted to know where the truck was, it was due on Tuesday. I immediately called State Farm and told them they told me that I had it until Wednesday. They quickly went into the system, saw that it was actually set to Tuesday, but updated the contract to allow me to have it until Wednesday. I have to say, other than providing me with barely enough money for an '82 Escort, my experience with State Farm was favorable.
I returned the Cherokee last night. A fine looking young lady was running the office. I told her I was returning the vehicle. She was super friendly, almost to the point where you think she wants to take you home with her. She inspects the truck, get the mileage, then asks, "Do you need a ride home?"
I know that I stammered and stuttered, but finally got out, "Um,....I,.....I think my.....uh, wife...is picking me up." She smiled a happy smile and said, "Okay!" Oh, my, I hope it wasn't that obvious. I think I may wreck my next car just to get another rental from her. I'm kidding, course.
So, speaking of my car - today was my first day driving my 1995 Mercury Mystique since before Christmas. OMG - what a piece of crap! I knew it was old and needs some work, but after you drive a brand new vehicle, you realize what a piece of crap you have. My brakes are shot, the car is LOUD. The steering is off. It rattles and shakes. Not good. Hopefully it will last until August 2009 when the payments on the Ford Windstar are done.
And another thing. My back starting hurting last weekend. It's getting worse. I guess I have to go to the doctor again. I'm sure it's related to the accident.
I complained to a coworker yesterday that it was hurting, but I didn't have any Advil with me. She ran to her office and offered me 2 pills for pain. I took both with my lunch. At the 1 o'clock meeting, she asked if I took one. I told her that I took both. The look of horror in her face scared me. She said that I was only supposed to take one and not to exceed 1 in 12 hours.
Oh, my. I didn't exceed 1 for only about 5 seconds. Throughout the meeting I suffered phantom symptoms of an overdose. My lips were numb. My concentration drifted. My hands tingled. My stomach became nauseous. However, by the end of the meeting, I got distracted and my phantom symptoms disappeared.
Hopefully I can garner the courage and strength and reach for the telephone and make that call to the doctor today - assuming it doesn't snow too much, because then I'm sledding.
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
On Sunday, the Baltimore Sun released a poll that indicated that O'Malley's approval rating plummeted to the lowest of any Maryland governor in the history of the poll. This raised my eyebrow momentarily, but then it lowered by itself. Anyway, if the ultra-liberal newspaper says O'Malley sucks, they may be onto something.
Finally, on Tuesday, a new Gonzales poll reaffirmed the previous two polls. Not only was his approval rating in the tank, but his disapproval rating was sky-high. O'Malley had accomplished the unthinkable - the trifecta of voter disapproval.
Why, you ask, is Martin O'Malley just so darn unpopular right now? It certainly couldn't be the bloatation of the state's budget or its accompanying ass-jabbing tax increase. People in Maryland love it when you raise their taxes to the point where they have to negatively adjust their spending habits and way of life.
And it certainly wouldn't be because he lied to us. You know, the ones where he promised to lower taxes for most people, replace the Public Service Commission with competent industry experts, or help the illegal immigrants get drivers' licenses (oops, bad example).
Perhaps people just don't like O'Malley anymore because he was giving Marylanders a big wedgie in the hallway. No one likes that. Or perhaps because he squished our sandwich at lunch. Remember that time at the playground when he got mad because he wasn't getting his way and decided to take his ball and go home? I bet that had something to do with it, too.
The world may never know. But there is one thing that O'Malley can count on. Marylanders have a short memory and when it comes time for reelection, he'll be recognized as the greatest thing since the gerrymandering Maryland 4th Congressional District.
Friday, January 11, 2008
Normally, for example, if I get a movie on Monday, I watch it Monday night, return it in the mail on Tuesday. Netflix gets it on Wednesday. I live near Baltimore and the closest center is in Gaithersburg, which is about 30-45 minutes away. If Netflix gets my movie on Wednesday, they put the next movie in the mail on that day. I get it on Thursday. I watch it on Thursday night and drop it in the mail on Friday. Then the cycle repeats itself. If Netflix doesn't want to send me new releases, that's fine, but at least send me something.
Lately, however, Netflix is abusing my account. I dropped a movie in the mail on December 31st. Tueday was a holiday, so no mail. Wednesday - they said they didn't get it. Thursday - they said they didn't get it. Friday, finally they say the got it. I receive the movie on Saturday and watch it on Sunday. I drop it in the mail on Monday morning. Tuesday - they say they didn't get it. Wednesday - they say they didn't get it. Thursday - we got it, but we'll send your next movie on Friday.
This is the third week in a row that they've done this to me. I'm on the verge of dropping Netflix and going to Blockbuster. At least there's a Blockbuster at the end of my street. I can hand the movie to the pimple-faced kid who doesn't give a rat's butt about his job, but at least they cannot deny that they don't have my movie yet.
And then there's the library. I was able to get Pirates of the Caribbean 3 from the library sooner than I got it from Netflix. Movies - yeah! Netflix - Boo!
Thursday, January 10, 2008
This news prompted Governor O'Malley, State Senate President Mike Miller, and House Speaker Busch to reiterate that State Schools Superintendent Nancy Grasmick be fired immediately because she's in the pocket of the Republican Party.
All have stated that they will support legislation to remove the independence of the independent school board, thus allowing it to make better independent decisions that are dependent on the decisions of the Maryland General Assembly. Uh...what?
O'Malley, in an effort to not allow Grasmick to get any credit for this achievement, immediately reminded the media of the stellar results of the Baltimore City Public School system during his tenure as mayor and that his efforts have now been brought to fruition at a state level. His accomplishments as mayor included higher graduation rates among high school seniors who actually completed half a year of school and safer elementary schools once metal detectors and police were introduced.
O'Malley cited results from his CityStat program, in addition to his new StateStat program to support his statements. Republicans, however, responded by showing data from CrapStat which rebukes anything O'Malley says.
O'Malley's gripe with Grasmick is not new. Their relationship has been sour since her efforts to have the state take over failing schools in Baltimore City while he was mayor. O'Malley denied that these schools were failing, just underfunded and mired by greedy corporate interests and uncooperative Republicans. Before the state was to take over the schools, rumors began circulating that O'Malley was making a DVD in the vein of Stop Snitchin', this one to be called "Stay Off Ma' Turf". This caused Grasmick to back down from her efforts, but their hostility continues.
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
In the small town of Dixville Notch, the voting started in the wee hours of the morning. And by doing so, America has won another small, yet decisive victory. Hillary Clinton received zero votes. In this small town, 70% of the Democratic votes went to Barack Hussein Obama, 20% went to Edwards and his really pretty hair, and 10% went to illegal-immigrant-loving Bill Richardson.
On the Republican side, 57% of the votes cast went for John McCain, nearly 29% went to Romney, and 14% went to Guiliani. Folksy Huckabee received no votes, nor do Ron Paul or Fred Thompson.
With such disappointing news, the Clinton campaign is scrambling. Some in her tight circle have suggested that this unlikable mean-spirited lady try to find a more suitable position in life - such as a cashier at the Owings Mills' Target or as a customer service representative for Comcast. Both companies frequently employ people with nasty dispositions like her. And her campaign workers will have to return to college or the video stores where they came from.
Nonetheless, expect the mud-slinging to intensify now that her numbers are shrinking quicker than George Costanza's manhood after he gets out of the pool. Unfortunately for Clinton, she won't be able to blame the cold water.
Monday, January 07, 2008
In an effort to boost his chances of gaining the nod to be the Vice-Presidential running mate, Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley spent this weekend stumping in New Hampshire for Hillary Clinton. After last week's disappointing showing in Iowa for Mrs. Clinton, O'Malley became despondent and reclusive. However, some members of the Baltimore Orioles came to his rescue and injected him with some steroids and human growth hormones and got him back on his feet. Reports indicate that Barbara Mikulski was also there, but since no one looked at their shoes, no one saw her.
During the day O'Malley was seen in a tavern in Manchester, New Hampshire shaking hands and telling everyone how attractive he is. Later in the evening he was seen with Mrs. Clinton. This time O'Malley was seen on all fours wearing items borrowed from Steny Hoyer - a black leather spiked collar, a mouth gag, open-backed leather chaps, and being drawn by Mrs. Clinton herself by a 5 foot long linked chain. Despite the showing, polls are indicating that Barack Hussein Obama now has a double-digit lead over the unlikable Clinton.
Mike Miller vs. Nancy Grasmick
In other Maryland news, Maryland State Senate President Mike Miller is crying foul in regard to Nancy Grasmick. He is demanding she do "the honorable" thing and resign. He claims that the independent State School Board is too independent and would better serve the residents of the state of Maryland if they were struck with constant fear and would bend to the will of the Democratic machine in Annapolis. He and Mike Busch are proposing new legislation that would add the appointment of the State Schools Superintendent to their dominion.
Miller, who once said of Republicans, "We're going to bury them face down in the ground, and it'll be 10 years before they crawl out again" is now applying his threat to any obstacle that gets in his way to total power. If I'm not mistaken, Hitler said and did the same kinds of things.
Sunday, January 06, 2008
Check it out:
Friday, January 04, 2008
- Washington Post's Article - Evangelicals Fuel Victory Over Romney
- New York Times - At Huckabee Central, Cheers for Evangelical Base
- AP - Evangelicals Choose One of Their Own
- Washington Post - Satan Endorses Obama after Win in Iowa
- New York Times - Obama Wins Big After Vowing to Ban Religion
- L.A. Times - Looks Like We Will Face the Republicans With Obama
- Baltimore Sun - O'Malley Cries, Oprah Pees Pants After Hearing Results
For the Republicans, Mike Huckabee came out on top. Based on his late surge in the polls, this isn't that much of a surprise. I know that the left-wing media like CNN, ABC, and CBS have been attacking him for being a Christian. We all know this makes him unfit for being President of the United States, regardless of the fact that the previous 43 Presidents were also Christians.
For the Democrats, the candidate who was raised in a Muslim household, Barack Hussein Obama came out on top of Jonathan Edwards and Hillary Clinton. While Clinton kept demanding that he get off of her, Edwards laid there quietly with a heavenly grin on his face.
More surprising for the Democrats is the fact that Hillary finished third. Now this is good news for Americans whether they realize it or not. However, it leaves 20 year-old MTV political activists and Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley in shock. Reports from Annapolis state that O'Malley has been sucking on his thumb weeping in a corner all night.
Not surprising was that Uncommitted handily defeated Chris Dodd (Democrat-Connecticut), Mike Gravel (Democrat-Alaska), and Dennis Kucinich (Lunatic-Ohio).
On the Republican side, Romney finished a not too far behind second with 25% of the vote. He was followed by Fred Thompson, John McCain, Ron Paul, Rudy Guiliani, and Duncan Hunter. Yes - Guiliani was defeated by Ron Paul. I think that's awesome!
The next stop, I believe, is Vermont. This is the time every 4 years that people other than skiers and Canadians looking for higher quality medical care come to Vermont. It's very important to the Presidential election to put 2 of the most insignificant states first, though I can't remember why.
Thursday, January 03, 2008
Corn shuckers and pollsters are coming out in droves and voting for Hillary, mostly because she has hired over 5000 people to drive them to the polls if they promise to voter for her. My sources indicate that Hillary Clinton will be a Socialist tyrant who will do all she can to get corporations out of medicine, because the government can do it better. Voters are brainwashed into believing that because she is Billy-Boy's wife and she claims to be a "moderate", she is the choice of the people.
Obama - the Rock-the-Vote youth crowd thinks Obama is awesome. Fortunately, most of them do not know that he was raised a Muslim and attended a school in Singapore that has ties to Islamic Jihad. Unfortunately, while most of our youth are vocal when it comes to politics, most of them are too busy recovering from hangovers or smoking pot today, so it doesn't look good for Obama.
Edwards - Edwards will run for President every 4 years for the rest of his life. He has sued enough medical doctors for malpractice that he can afford to do so. Fortunately, he ran those pesky OB/GYN's out of business. Unfortunately, voters see him as such a dandy that he doesn't have a real chance. On a side note, does anyone know if there are any OB/GYN's left in North Carolina? I can't find any.
There are persistent rumors that there are other Democratic candidates, but no one has been able to confirm this.
Romney - Romney is turning out to be the early favorite. Voters are indicating that they like the dyed hair with the touch of gray on the sideburns. His Mormonism isn't hampering them because most people no longer believe that all Mormons have ten 14 year-old wives and hide in the desert.
Guiliani - the wild card of the Republicans, he is still close at the polls. He mentions 9/11 as much as possible and is one of the few candidates who actually ran something and ran it successfully. What does a Senator actually do other than sponsor bills and argue with "the other side of the aisle?"
McCain - liked by more people in the middle than any other candidate, it really doesn't matter. No one seems to be voting for him. The primary election is more about propping up the extremists from both parties picking the candidates that no one in the middle likes.
Huckabee - the likable former Governor of Arkansas is doing well today. Gosh darn-it, Huckabee sounds like a jovial Iowa name and it is helping him immensely. He has successfully hidden the fact that he pardoned a rapist and released him from jail who subsequently raped someone else. Not that he had any control over the actions of the individual, but why would you take those chances in the first place?
Thompson - Fred is not doing as well as expected. Voters say that they don't know much about them, but when my crack commando reporters inform them that he was on Law & Order and The Hunt for the Red October, they suddenly remember him, only to be disappointed that they just got done voting for Mitt Romney.
Ron Paul - the favorite of people that actually understands politics, no one has voted for him today - mostly because the people voting today don't understand politics. Poor Ron. You still have my backing.
Wednesday, January 02, 2008
The year started off with Martin O'Malley taking office as the Governor of Maryland, though he took it to mean a mandate to became a condescending dictator. I became severely depressed and forced write biographies for Republicans on Wikipedia to help overcome my grief. My Nerd hat is in the mail. Hopefully O'Malley won't throw out all of the Maryland laws and we'll get to vote him out of office next time.
At the end of January, my son turned 5 years old. I can hardly believe he's no longer my little boy. He was such a cute little baby. Now he's a sarcastic SOB. I have NO idea where he gets it. Today, I decided to go to the liquor store because I was in the mood for some Kazmir (Vanilla Brandy). As we pulled into the parking lot he asks, "Where are we going?" I told him we were going to the "beer store". "Oh, you mean the liquorish store?" Gotta love him!!! (And by the way - I got a 750 of Drambuie for $24. Woo-hoo!!!)
In March, my mom turned 60. We were all unsure how she would take it. She's a very sensitive woman. She took it well. We were all there to celebrate just another birthday. I think she just enjoyed seeing her grandchildren. Plus, by this time my wife was starting to show. See - she was pregnant with our third child, though everyone found out at Christmas in 2006.
At the beginning of July we took our annual family vacation to Ocean City - just the 12 of us. Actually, if you count my sister, her husband, her daughter and my mom who stayed down the street from us, that would make 16. During the week, we usually end up getting at each other's throats, but this year was nice. Everyone stayed civil.
Right after the vacation I got promoted to Senior Business Systems Analyst. Unfortunately, it was to another department. And my new boss is younger than me. That's a first. But who's going to turn down a 12% raise???
In August, we celebrated the birth of my 2nd daughter - our third child. She's a cutie! Looks like dad. She's looks like her older sister but with lighter red hair. She's now siting up and making lots of noise and demanding whatever we're eating. Her favorite foods are now yams, apple sauce, and my thumb. Hopefully we'll get her to sleep through the night soon.
Unfortunately, my wife ended up back in the hospital 2 weeks after she was discharged. She had severe abdominal pains which required me to call an ambulance to get her out of the house. We spent about 10 hours in the ER before she was admitted, meaning I was awake for 25 straight hours. The next day the doctor informed us that she probably had placental cancer. We spent the next couple of hours contemplating our life battling cancer, only to have him return to say, "Now that I thought about it, I don't think it's cancer." Great, thanks for thinking about it after you scared the shit out of us!!! I should have received the Silver Star for not punching the guy in the mouth. However, we are still dealing with the complications of whatever happened. There is an "undetermined" mass in her abdomen, and though smaller, it is still there.
At the end of August, the kids returned to school (while Mommy was still in the hospital). My daughter started 3rd grade (yikes!!!) and my son started Kindergarten. He returned after the first day of school and when asked how he liked his teacher responded, "Well, she's kind of chubby."
In October we returned to the beach - just the 20 of us. We rented out half of the Comfort Inn on 5th street. In attendance were my family, my wife's sister's family, her mother, her brother and his girlfriend and her son, my wife's cousin's family, and my wife's other cousin and her boyfriend and his son. It was a grand time. We know nothing about the fireworks display that went off on the beach on Saturday.
My daughter turned 8 during that same weekend. It seems like yesterday when she was born. But if you double her age, she'll be 16. Can someone please pour me a glass of that Drambuie?
November was uneventful personally. Thanksgiving was nice. Though O'Malley's Special Session wasn't so special. His government page still tells us that most Marylander's will pay less. What a crock of horse poop. Check it out yourself (see the gray box outlined in green on the center right side)
December was crazy - as it is for everyone. We celebrated Christmas on Christmas Eve at my sister's house. That was a nice change of pace. I got Magnum PI Season 4 from my parents, in addition to my Legos and Fortress America, both of which were mine as a child and taking up space in their attic. However, I'm not quite sure how that counts as a Christmas present.
On Christmas, I joined the iPod club. It was actually my 3rd MP3 player. I won the first won about 5 years ago. It held 8 songs, and in fact the same 8 songs that I originally downloaded are still on it - all Crosby, Stills, Nash (and sometimes Young). It's good for when I'm mowing the lawn. Nothing like drowning out the noise of the lawnmower with more noise piped directly to my eardrum.
Santa spoiled the kids once again. He brought lots of Star Wars toys (which interestingly are still fun to play with 25 years later!!!) and Nintendo DS's. I didn't spoil my wife with another vacuum or frying pan this year. I went all out and got her an automatic soap dispenser for the kitchen. Nothing says "I Love You" more than Cucumber Mango soap spurting out of a battery-powered brushed aluminum soap dispenser.
And as you may have read from an earlier post, 2 days after Christmas some chick smashed into my truck. Have you ever dealt with an insurance company? Boy, what fun!!! It's almost as much fun as dealing with the cable company. I did learn that if you go through the offender's insurance company, you don't pay your deductible and they give you a loaner. However, being the victim in a car accident is still a crime. I'm out a truck and I KNOW they won't give me enough to get another truck. What's the bigger crime - the accident or the insurance racket???
Wishing you a great 2008!!!