About Me

My photo

Traveling, living, loving, exploring and trying to make some semblance of sense out of this crazy world.  


Friday, October 14, 2016

Election 2016, or, Alien vs Predator- No Matter Who Wins, We Lose

Last word on this-

If you vote in this election, you lose.

If you do not vote in this election, you lose.

If you vote for Hillary, you are saying you support lobbyists and Wall Street owning our government, that you support lifetime bureaucratic-political careers and the sale of America's resources and political future to China and other peace-loving pro-democracy nations. 

You're saying that you shouldn't divorce your cheating husband if it advances your political career, and should in fact join him in selling out our country, while defending rapists and dehumanizing their victims.

You are admitting that you are gullible enough to think that anyone who is giving inspirational presentations to Wall Street and big corporations for millions of dollars a pop has any concept of how you live or the struggles you go through to pay your bills and feed yourself, never mind those you love.

You're telling our soldiers that it is okay for their leaders to be clueless and apathetic while our overseas personnel die at the hands of terrorists, when they could be saved by a single phone call, and that it is okay to have trained and supplied those terrorists for decades.

You're saying pantsuits are actually fashion.

If, on the other hand, you vote for Donald Trump, you're saying it is acceptable to be profane, vulgar, disrespectful and downright aggressive to women, which is funny, when you think of just how many of Trump's supporters were all about the transgender bathroom law.

Now you have a man who has assaulted women sexually (as in: against their wishes and/or without their consent), and you want to put him in the White House? 

(By the way, if you have never been in a locker room, that is not 'locker room talk'. That was nasty, degrading ignorance put into words. Talking like that in most locker rooms will earn you a punch in the mouth.)

You're telling the world that you are fine with a man who is a fan of the dictator who rules Russia with a bloody iron fist, a man that, like Putin, is prepared to commit war crimes or order our military to do so.

(At which point Don will retire to a comfy room in Gitmo, or his supporters will learn a bitter lesson about the true depths of our military's honor and commitment to preserving the Constitution.)

What would make America great again is a man who would hand out nukes like Christmas candy to some of the most unstable governments in the world, ideologically? 

A man who would suspend our right to free speech if it is aimed at him? 

A man who said that he has nothing to confess to God, and that sleeping around in the 70s was the equivalent of serving in Viet Nam? 

How could you scream about Obama's disrespect of veterans for eight years and swallow that bile with a grin? 

How do you expect fiscal responsibility and progress from a man who cannot keep casinos solvent (casinos; you know, where the house always wins?), even with a strip bar inside?

(A strip bar, also known as a place where men actually pay more not to sleep with women and where money pours like rain from heaven.)

You're also saying that combovers and spray-on tans are cool.

(Yes I did say more about him- he offends me much more deeply, since I am a man and he is a simian approximation.)

I've been to Colorado and seen what it is like there, and this is nothing like that, so I have to ask-

What are you people smoking?

Can you really believe that Susan B. Anthony, Jesus, The Founding Fathers, Lincoln, or anyone with a working set of frontal lobes would want either of these complete failures as humans anywhere near the White House?

Even if you choose to vote for a independent candidate like Gary Johnson, you are voting for someone who will not be allowed to win. The two major parties have already shown themselves capable of as many dirty tricks as could be imagined to battle each other- combined, their attacks would be insurmountable. 

And, of course, if you wisely choose not to vote, your choices will be made by the incredibly divided and partisan masses, swirling around the gene pool on their little rubber horses, just waiting for November and a chance to 'Put A Woman Where She Really Belongs' or 'Make America Great Again', neither of which is going to happen.

As I have said- no winning. 

Not even for me. 

After all, it's not much fun saying "I told you so" from inside the blast radius.

Election 2016: We're screwed.

Friday, July 29, 2016

The Reed Creek app is LIVE!

The Reed Creek app is here at last, now live on rakkup.com!

Check out cool navigation features, sweet action shots and updated route info.

And keep an eye on rakkup.com for the upcoming Long Branch and The Guide Wall. app, with over sixty routes, and something for everyone, from 5.6 trad cruises to bolted 5.13+ technical challenges.

Thanks to Tyrel Johnson for all your hard work getting this product out to climbers everywhere.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Letter of The Law

[Cribbed from the internet, original source uncertain. Accuracy undeniable.]

So.... homosexuality is an abomination according to Leviticus 18:22, and cannot be condoned under any circumstances as preached by many, including a certain Dr Laura from a well known US radio talk show. The following was an open letter to that doctor!

Dear Dr. Laura

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God's Law. I have learned a great deal from your show, and try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination. End of debate. I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some other elements of God's Laws and how to follow them.

1. Leviticus 25:44 states that I may possess slaves, both male and female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you clarify? Why can't I own Canadians?

2. I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?

3. I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanliness - Lev.15: 19-24. The problem is, how do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense.

4. When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor for the Lord - Lev.1:9. The problem is my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

5. I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself, or should I ask the police to do it?

6. A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination, Lev. 11:10, it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don't agree. Can you settle this? Are there 'degrees' of abomination?

7. Lev. 21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have a defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle-room here?

8. Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev. 19:27. How should they die?

9. I know from Lev. 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

10. My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev.19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? Lev.24:10-16. Couldn't we just burn them to death at a private family affair, like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)

I know you have studied these things extensively and thus enjoy considerable expertise in such matters, so I'm confident you can help.

Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and unchanging.

Your adoring fan,

James M. Kauffman,

Ed.D. Professor Emeritus,

Dept. Of Curriculum, Instruction, and Special Education University of Virginia

P.S. (It would be a damn shame if we couldn't own a Canadian.)

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Things Change

Life is funny, ya know?

A week ago, my life was fairly normal; laundry, dishes, cleaning up after cats and kids, reading posts on Facebook and the internet, watching the debacle of the election cycle, trying to finish some anchor replacement at the older crags in WV and making plans to hit the road for Colorado the day after tomorrow, to begin another season as staff in Pike National Forest's 11 Mile Canyon.

An hour later, I was in an ambulance with a wife who I did not know would live to see another day, holding her hand as EMTs worked on her, my heart in my throat and all plans for the future annihilated and scattered to the winds.

Late that night, the doctors at RMH told us their diagnosis; not the worst, but not the best, not by a long shot.

Cindy, a fourteen year stroke survivor and Multiple Sclerosis fighter, had suffered a brain aneurysm; a massive swelling in the carotid artery just inside her skull, like a loaded cannon pointed directly at the base of her brain. She was transferred to Richmond's Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center for more tests and scans, her condition analyzed by some of the leading neurosurgeons in the country.

On Saturday, her pain was minimal, her condition stable, and we came back to the Shenandoah Valley.

Eight years ago, I met a funny, beautiful lady with a heart of gold; taught her to climb, shared her battle with Multiple Sclerosis, supported her fight to stop using the medications that were killing her, and listened as she fought with the darkness that had been poured into her soul by demons in human form at such an early age.

In turn, she accepted me for the bipolar, sardonic, irascible, irreverent fool that I am; reached down into my well of isolation and self-pity and drew out the very best of me. If I have failed to live up to that ideal, the fault is mine; Cindy has always believed in me, no matter how badly or how often I have failed.

We have traveled the country from coast to coast, climbed and hiked, laughed and cried at the folly and loss of friends and family, celebrated victories and struggled to find a silver lining surrounding the storm clouds of our occasional defeats. We've learned more about friendship, hardship, love and life in the last few years than either of us suspected could be known in a lifetime.

Today, Cindy and I have a slightly clearer picture of a much different future, and in the light of that knowledge, we are living each day to the fullest, loving and appreciating each other, so thankful for the family and friends who have put aside their own burdens and reached out to support us in our darkest hours of need.

The Road ahead is uncertain; there are trials and storms on our horizons, without a doubt, as there are for every person living in this consensual illusion of reality that we share. But for now, we are holding each other in this safe haven, cherishing each touch, each kiss, each word, and together, we will get through whatever may come.

No matter what may transpire, each of us knows the other will be waiting, there in that forest meadow at the end of the Road; waiting and calling, "Come home".

You and me, kid; forever.

And, for now, that is more than enough.