Friday, March 24, 2017

Aberdeen Fire Department Steals Photos?

I was looking for the make and model of an old firetruck of which I took a photo several years ago.  It's a vintage Mack from the Aberdeen Fire Department.  When I looked on their website, low and behold - they have a photo of Heavy Rescue 251 - THAT'S MY PHOTO!!!  I don't think I've ever posted it to this blog - I couldn't find a photo.  However, I have posted it to my Instragram account - MarylandFiretrucker.

Aberdeen Fire Department - did you steal my photo?

Here's the guilty photo:

Here's my photo:

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Obama's War on the Bathroom

The rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated.

Yes, another phase of my life that is super busy and jam-packed with kid activities, work, and craftbeer drinking has been upon me for the past few fortnights.  With Martin O'Malley dropping out of the Presidential race to pursue a career in trying to convince the country that climate change will kill all of the polar bears, I have found politics less interesting.  The Democratic crime bosses are doing their best to give Bernie Sanders a beat-down, reallocating his delegates despite his wins in states such as New Hampshire, Nevada, Wyoming, and Kentucky.  Brain-washed Republicans think Trump is the second coming of Ronald Reagan.  Good grief, we live in interesting times.

So, to borrow from Peter Griffin, you know what really grinds my gears?  It's Obama's new directive to public education institutions that they must immediately allow people to use the bathroom of the gender with which they associate.  This means that they are not using the bathroom that correlates to their gentiles, ie. their biological assignment.  This action, in my opinion, is creating a path to criminal behavior that will be impossible to stop.

For the record, I'm not against transgender or using the bathroom of the gender with which they associate.  I truly believe that some people are born thinking they should be the opposite sex.  I don't think this is a fault and I don't think they should face discrimination nor be punished.  Now it gets complicated.

However, here's my problem.  I have 2 daughters.  It is my job to protect them from harm.  I am not allowed in the female bathroom to protect them for multiple reasons, the main reason being that I am a heterosexual guy.  There are many ways that we have instinctively been able to tell something is wrong and can react appropriately to save ourselves.  One of those is when you see a person of the other gender in your bathroom.  "Dad, there's a guy in the bathroom!"  "Quick!  Call the police!"

I don't think this is as much of a problem for guys finding a women in their bathroom.  I've been to concerts.  You always see girls in the guy's bathroom because the lines are shorter.  No one makes a big deal about it, except for the occasional jackwagon who wants to "whoooooo!!!!" the girl.  My only concern in these cases is: are there any guys that are going to try and take advantage of these girls when they are vulnerable, i.e. urinating with their pants down.  I would glady shove that guy's head into the wall.

Which sort of brings me to my main point.  If my daughters see a man in the women's room prior to last week, then this automatically triggers the fear in their mind that something is not right.  A guy doesn't not belong in the women's room.  Fight or flee.  I want them to flee.

Last week Obama sent an executive order instructing all public education institutions (assuming it's all public education institutions?  Does it apply to private education institutions?)  to allow people to use the bathroom of their gender identity.  There is no law requiring this.  Only Obama declaring it so.  Now, though unlikely, my daughters may find themselves in the women's room with another man (biologically speaking).  Do they flee?  You better damn well bet they are going to flee.  Is Obama going to hold himself criminally responsible if another man uses this situation to his advantage and strolls into the women's room to take pictures or force himself upon a girl?  I think not.  Do I think transgender people are going to perform this crime?  No.  Do I think opportunistic creeps are going to perform this crime?  Hell-fuckin yes!  It's already happening.  Google it!

How do we stop this type of behavior?  Can we trigger the alarm when a guy enters the girls bathroom?  Nope.  It might be a transgender person.  We must tolerate this behavior and cross our fingers and hope that nothing bad happens.

Further questions to ponder, which may have already been answered - are trans-gendered people now allowed to use the locker room of their choice?  What about the showers in the locker room?  I can only imagine someone taking a shower with the girls because he's pretending to be a girl.  The 17 year old in me thinks this is cool.  The father in me wants to keep a pipe close at hand.

What's the solution?  I don't know.  Perhaps more individual bathrooms?  Privacy bathrooms?  Regardless of the laws, we must learn to protect ourselves and our children from harm.  And if this means not allowing our daughters to use the bathrooms, then unfortunately, that's the way it must be.

Obama, you have failed again.

Monday, January 04, 2016

Coming to Eldersburg - Super Discount Grocery Store Lidl

As if Eldersburg didn't have enough grocery stores, the German super discount chain Lidl's announced they want to build a store similar to Aldi's right in our back yard.

You can read about it right here:

At present, we have Food Lion, Super Wal-Mart, Shopper's, Safeway, and Martin's.  I think per capital, we may already have the highest grocery store to person rate.

The addition of another store that targets the low-income crowd will certainly make times even more difficult for stores in Eldersburg.  Why would the Carroll County Zoning Commission want to perpetuate urban sprawl and create unfavorable economic conditions for existing businesses?

And why do we need a Lidl's in Eldersburg?  This type of store certainly does not meet the economic demographcis of Eldersburg's upwardly mobile, commuting, two-income families.  I suspect they wanted to put this store in Randallstown, but couldn't find a place suitable for them.

Eldersburg - the next Randallstown.  That just doesn't sound like a selling point to me.

Martin O'Malley - Ohio Eludes You

Friday, January 01, 2016

O'Malley Ineligible for Ohio

Sorry it's been so long since I've written.  Life.  It happens.

Martin O'Malley has been trudging around Iowa and New Hampshire for the past year or so speaking to dozens of people at a time.  Meanwhile, Grandma Hillary Clinton and Crazy Hair Bernie Sanders are speaking to thousands of followers.  I'm not sure how O'Malley is even still in the race.  I'm sure he has hundreds of dollars left in the bank to finance his campaign.

The former Maryland governor's anti-fans got the best news yesterday.  Martin O'Malley failed to qualify to be on the ballot for the primary in Ohio.  Ohio law requires the submission of 1,000 signatures to be included.  O'Malley submitted 1,175 signatures, but the Buckeyes rejected 403 of those signatures, leaving him with 772, far too few to be on the ballot.

O'Malley's spokesperson is saying that they are exploring their options.  In political speak this usually means that they are trying to how to bow out of the race with dignity, but I suspect that is a trait that eludes our former tyrant.

As most people are saying, at this point, Martin O'Malley isn't really running for President.  He's running a public awareness campaign, perhaps for a cabinet post.  He certainly won't be selected for a running mate for Vice President.  What would that accomplish?  The Democrats would carry Maryland?  The Democrats would carry Maryland with a bigot like Rahm Emanuel on the ticket.

The good new, for O'Malley at least, is that he has already qualified to be on the ballot for 18 or 19 other states.  I'd say that's bad news for us, but he's not going to be president, so it will be nice to see him squirm for the second half of the year.

Here's to another year of Martin O'Malley not being in office!

Welcome Back!

Thursday, June 04, 2015

If You're Going to Steal.....

I came across an article on the Baltimore Sun mentioning the large white oak tree in Eldersburg that fell in the storm on Sunday.  Then I realized something amazing - the photos used by Sun reporter Michel Elben are actually MY PHOTOS!!!!

Here is the article on The Sun with MY photos:

I looked at the caption and someone else was credited with submitting them.  Look - if you're going to use my pictures, at least give me credit.

I know that if I was to use The Sun's photos without attribution, they'd come after me.  We all know it's not a level playing field.  I demand justice be served!  And by justice, I want them to post a link to my blog and a bag of Doritos!

Monday, June 01, 2015

Eldersburg White Oak Felled

If you live in Eldersburg, you may have seen the large white oak tree on Stafford Court off of Ridge Road.  The tree was HUGE!  We once looked at a house for sale on this street when we were looking to move to Eldersburg.  I remember commenting about how large the tree was.

Last night we heard an amazing storm.  It was like a strobe-light session with a entourage of howitzers having a competition.  Flashes of lighting and chest-thumping cracks of thunder woke me around 11:45.  The wind was whipping the trees sideways and the rain was smacking the side of our house.  It was one of those top ten storms of the year kind of storms.  I knew that the next morning would uncover some damage around the neighborhood.

I was almost disappointed when I didn't see much damage on my way to work this morning, but once I checked Facebook I saw posts of some big trees down all over the metro Eldersburg megalopolis area.  The one that caught my eye was the big white oak tree on Stafford Court.

Tonight was a running night, so I decided to make Stafford Court part of my route.  My quick 8:45/mile pace came to a jolting stop as I turned onto Stafford Court from Ridge Road.  The massive tree lay on its side aiming across the road.  The trunk stood taller than a man.  Trees on the other side of the street were not spared.  Large limbs littered the cul-de-sac, areas far enough away from the old wooden ghost that you would have though they would have been safe over there.

The property owner was outside, so I fired up a conversation with him.  He said the previous owner of the house had heard that it was about 285 years old.  In fact, the original owner, well, previous-previous owner, would occasionally come around and collect the fallen acorns to plant elsewhere.  Another neighbor joined the conversation and said that she once read that it was estimated that the tree was the 4th oldest tree in Carroll County.

285 years?  Let's put this in perspective.  That means the tree started growing in 1730.  Benjamin Franklin was in his 20's.  Britain ruled the colonies.  The tree was already 59 years old when George Washington became President of the United States.  This tree was already 100 years old when Andrew Jackson was President.  That was an old tree.

The tree across the street suffered the wrath of mother nature and the Earth's gravity during the storm when the massive white oak tree sheered the tree nearly in half.

Carroll County sent trucks at 2am to clear the street of the tree so that emergency vehicles could get through the mess.  It almost looks as if the old legend's limbs shattered from the core when it hit the ground.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Firetruck Friday

Not a firetruck, but I thought you would appreciate this nonetheless.  This, I believe, is a 1971 Ford 500 Maryland State Police car.  Note that this was the olive and black color scheme that the Maryland State Police ended, but then returned to later.

I took this picture at the 2007 4th of July Parade in Kingsville, Maryland.

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