The Race #317 –7/26/2016

In what century do we finally learn it’s what’s in man’s heart that kills, not what’s in his hand? Jody Hudson

Welcome everyone to Drivel Over Coffee, the blog; musings, memories and whatnot infused with the earthy aroma of French Roast Coffee with a dose of rant mixed in on occasion. In each person’s life a little rain shall fall. Why must I be in a typhoon – day after day? A bit of scheduling information. I will be taking next week off. I will be on vacation beginning Thursday August 4th. I have company coming in and wish to show-off Iowa. Heads up Iowa friends and readers. Please sweep off the front porch, mow the grass, and bake a pie or two. Those hotties living on Hysteria Lane, please keep it indoors. Thanks in Advance.

Musings – Who says building a border wall won’t work? The Chinese built one over 2,000 years ago and they still don’t have any Mexicans.

I wonder why we are so obsessed with trying to find intelligent life on other planets, when we can’t even find intelligent life here?

When an Aquarius loves, they love strong. When they get upset, it’s not random. Don’t underestimate the reason behind their emotions. Hmm, my birthday is Feb. 1. Is that Aquarius?

Here is an interesting speech to the students and faculty of their high school by Dennis Prager .I am your new principal, and honored to be so. There is no greater calling than to teach young people. I would like to apprise you of some important changes coming to our school. I am making these changes because I am convinced that most of the ideas that have dominated public education in America have worked against you, against your teachers and against our country.

First, this school will no longer honor race or ethnicity. I could not care less if your racial makeup is black, brown, red, yellow or white. I could not care less if your origins are African, Latin American, Asian or European, or if your ancestors arrived here on the Mayflower or on slave ships. The only identity I care about, the only one this school will recognize, is your individual identity — your character, your scholarship, your humanity. And the only national identity this school will care about is American. This is an American public school, and American public schools were created to make better Americans. If you wish to affirm an ethnic, racial or religious identity through school, you will have to go elsewhere. We will end all ethnicity, race and non-American nationality-based celebrations. They undermine the motto of America, one of its three central values —  E pluribus Unum, “from many, one.” And this school will be guided by America’s values. This includes all after-school clubs. I will not authorize clubs that divide students based on any identities. This includes race, language, religion, sexual orientation or whatever else may become in vogue in a society divided by political correctness. Your clubs will be based on interests and passions, not blood, ethnic, racial or other physically defined ties. Those clubs just cultivate narcissism — an unhealthy preoccupation with the self — while the purpose of education is to get you to think beyond yourself. So we will have clubs that transport you to the wonders and glories of art, music, astronomy, languages you do not already speak, carpentry and more. If the only extracurricular activities you can imagine being interested in are those based on ethnic, racial or sexual identity, that means that little outside of yourself really interests you.

Second, I am uninterested in whether English is your native language. My only interest in terms of language is that you leave this school speaking and writing English as fluently as possible. The English language has united America’s citizens for over 200 years, and it will unite us at this school. It is one of the indispensable reasons this country of immigrants has always come to be one country. And if you leave this school without excellent English language skills, I would be remiss in my duty to ensure that you will be prepared to successfully compete in the American job market. We will learn other languages here — it is deplorable that most Americans only speak English — but if you want classes taught in your native language rather than in English, this is not your school.

Third, because I regard learning as a sacred endeavor, everything in this school will reflect learning’s elevated status. This means, among other things, that you and your teachers will dress accordingly. Many people in our society dress more formally for Hollywood events than for church or school. These people have their priorities backward. Therefore, there will be a formal dress code at this school.

Fourth, no obscene language will be tolerated anywhere on this school’s property — whether in class, in the hallways or at athletic events. If you can’t speak without using the f -word, you can’t speak. By obscene language I mean the words banned by the Federal Communications Commission, plus epithets such as “Nigger,” even when used by one black student to address another black, or “bitch,” even when addressed by a girl to a girlfriend. It is my intent that by the time you leave this school, you will be among the few your age to instinctively distinguish between the elevated and the degraded, the holy and the obscene.

Fifth, we will end all self-esteem programs. In this school, self-esteem will be attained in only one way — the way people attained it until decided otherwise a generation ago — by earning it. One immediate consequence is that there will be one valedictorian, not eight.

Sixth, and last, I am reorienting the school toward academics and away from politics and propaganda. No more time will be devoted to scaring you about smoking and caffeine, or terrifying you about sexual harassment or global warming. No more semesters will be devoted to condom wearing and teaching you to regard sexual relations as only or primarily a health issue… There will be no more attempts to convince you that you are a victim because you are not white, or not male, or not heterosexual or this school and does not consider him or herself inordinately fortunate — to be alive and to be an American.

Now, please stand and join me in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag of our country. As many of you do not know the words, your teachers will hand them out to you.

Would it not be GREAT if every school and school district adopted this six point plan in their schools? Might actually improve our future adults and leaders.

Memories – Sunday afternoon was reserved for race day on the farm. No we didn’t race cars or tractors. My brother Denny, the eldest, and I raced our vehicles at Bailey International Raceways. I think I was 8 or 9 at the time. Denny was 15 or 16. We had the bright idea to build a race track. We found an ideal spot on the east side of the barn. It was shaded from the hot Iowa summer rays yet picked up the southerly breezes. The track ran north and south. It was a classic oval, 50 foot straight-always, high banked turns. The infield was filled with boulders except for the pit lane. The plan got the old man’s approval and a reluctant nod from mom.

We set out clearing the track area using our trusty old Ford 8N tractor with a rear mounted blade and a manure loader. The dirt was ideal for a track. It had a nice mixture of old cow and pig droppings mixed into the rich Dallas County loam. It drained well, didn’t smell at this point, and was easy to maintain. We banked the turns 3 feet high using scrap 2 x 12 boards and fence posts. We built one row bleachers next to the barn giving spectators a back rest against the barn. We inlaid a strip of bricks across the track at the start/finish line. No, I did not have to kiss the brick when I won. I made a set of flags and assembled a small first aid kit next to the bleachers. Concessions were made in the house and packed into boxes for distribution. Denny and I had two “race” cars; a tricycle and a pedal car. Each was highly modified. The Tricycle had the front fender bent down in the front to increase down force. The pedal car had a cardboard splitter added for the same purpose. I personally spent hours oiling and spinning the wheels on the pedal car to reduce the friction. I put straps on the pedals so my feet wouldn’t slip off in the turns.5dc523320a598155c38624608e9c11d6.jpg

On race day, I was really nervous. Denny was always really fast on the tricycle. Mainly because he cheated. He didn’t pedal, he ran behind it pushing it. Naturally, that created a bit of angst between us. He usually 156872976_-vintage-tricycle-bicycle-bike-mid-century-peday-car-.jpgwas dressed blue jeans, white t-shirt and engineer boots. AKA James Dean. Knowing how dangerous this sport was, I likewise wore blue jeans. Under my dad’s t-shirt were my pressed cardboard shoulder pads. Naturally, I had my pressed cardboard football helmet, safely strapped to my head with an elastic band under my chin. I drove with a pair of leather gloves I stole from Denny. I also wore a pair of googles that Denny used when riding his Wizard motorbike.

The race day was comprised of several 10 lap heats with a 25 lap main event provided no one had gotten hurt by then. The green flag and checkered flag was waved by the best looking female in the stands. Usually it was mom since she was the only female there. She lacked real flag man vigor but she got the job done. Denny was at a disadvantage with the tricycle as it was an open wheeled vehicle with only 3 wheels and easily overturned or wrecked. My pedal car was four wheeled and very stable especially in the corners. The rear end would slide out but that was okay.

It was not unusual for one of us to be forced off the track. There was never a caution flag because we didn’t have one. More than once I was wrecked in the turn, going over the embankment; coming to rest with a pedal car on top of me. My helmet showed the scars from these wrecks. Several times race day would be prematurely shortened due to an injured driver – me. It was always me getting hurt. I suppose it was because I was younger than and not nearly as mean as my brother. With the care of mom, I always recovered but what a fun time anyway. This lasted one summer. Denny was driving and finding girls to be more fun than a snotty little brother. For me, I outgrew the pedal car. My knees kept hitting the steering wheel. Wish I would race him again. Will only be in my memories though.

Whatnot – I don’t exercise! It makes my coffee spill.
At my age… “Gettin’ Any?” means sleep!

Spud of timage012ahe Old Farts Coffee Klatch celebrated his birthday this year by buying an all-terrain 4-wheeler. This is a picture of him playing with it in his back yard. I am jealous as all get out. I’m thinking about getting one.
A lady was picking through the frozen turkeys at the grocery store, but couldn’t find one big enough for her family. She asked a stock boy, “Do these turkeys get any bigger?” The stock boy replied, “No, ma’am, they are dead.”

Food Spoilage Test (cut and tape to the frig. door)

EGGS: When something starts pecking its way out of the shell, the egg is probably past its prime.
DAIRY PRODUCTS: Milk is spoiled when it starts to look like yogurt. Yogurt is spoiled when it starts to look like cottage cheese. Cottage cheese is spoiled when it starts to look like regular cheese. Regular cheese is nothing but spoiled milk anyway and can’t get any more spoiled than it is already. Cheddar cheese is spoiled when you think it is blue cheese but you realize you’ve never purchased that kind.
EXPIRATION DATES: This is NOT a marketing ploy to encourage you to throw away perfectly good food so that you’ll spend more on groceries. Perhaps you’d benefit by having a calendar in your kitchen.
MEAT: If opening the refrigerator door causes stray animals from a three- block radius to congregate outside your house, the meat is spoiled.
BREAD: Sesame seeds and Poppy seeds are the only officially acceptable “spots” that should be seen on the surface of any loaf of bread. Fuzzy and hairy looking white or green growth areas are a good indication that your bread has turned into a pharmaceutical laboratory experiment.
FLOUR: Flour is spoiled when it wiggles.
SALT: It never spoils.
CANNED GOODS: Any canned goods that have become the size or shape of a softball should be disposed of. Carefully.
CARROTS: A carrot that you can tie a clove hitch in is not fresh.
RAISINS: Raisins should not be harder than your teeth.
CHIP DIP: If you can take it out of its container and bounce it on the floor, it has gone bad.
GENERAL RULE OF THUMB: Most food cannot be kept longer than the average life span of a hamster. Keep a hamster nearby your refrigerator to gauge this.

Remember your Vietnam Veterans – All gave some, some gave all!! If I can make at least one-person smile, or laugh till they leak, then my day was not wasted. Until we meet again -TA!