Sunday, August 28, 2016

One Desire Above All

Going through some old posts to and found one of my poems that seems to only exist on that site. I took a moment to save it in my library and decided to share it with you here. I'm not exactly sure when it was written, so I'm using the date it was posted. 

The notes at the bottom are exactly as written on the site. Please realize that I'd later come to the realization that you have to be content with who you are, and the fact that you may never find someone to share your life with, before you are honestly ever ready for that special someone. In other words, the desperation must be gone - because like fear, it can be sensed. And no one desires to be the object of THAT.

Enjoy. -j.p.

©Emittravel 2016

One Desire Above All

The one thing I desire
in all of life
Is to hold an angel
and call her my wife
To share in romance
to walk in her light
One being together
entwined through the night

The sound of her voice
the touch of her hand
One look from her eyes
and I’m hers to command
To focus my efforts
to please her - to show
Satisfy her longing
of true love to know

My angel is out there
I can sense she is close
Each day my eyes searching
my heart writing prose
One day I shall meet her
the searching shall end
A soul-mate, companion
an intimate friend

Is this hunger I have
that consumes my existence
Passion never failing
worthy of persistence
So, my dear Angel
I’ve one question for thee
As you go through your day
are you searching for me

J.P. Wiegand

Hope. Full of hope. Unsure of the future, but still full of hope. Some of you have already found your angel--with you I rejoice. For others the search continues--with you I hope.

The image is of a young lady I once knew. I don't think she will mind my using her image--she IS now an angel in the truest sense of the word. (I miss you!)

This one is dedicated to my dad; who believes it's not a poem if it doesn't rhyme. Here's one for ya Papasan! -j.p.

©Emittravel 2005

Sunday, August 21, 2016

If You Can't Say Something Nice . . .

Hello, my name is J.P. and I'm a podcast junkie. The podcast can be all talk, or all music, and I'm hooked. If you ever see me and I have a Bluetooth earpiece firmly attached to the side of my head, there's a good chance that a podcast is softly running in the background. My player of choice is Pocket Casts. I use it on my Android phone with the earpiece or over the speakers in the Jeep, or on my Windows phone over a Bluetooth speaker I installed in my motorcycle helmet.

Many of the podcasts I listen to are just for background noise. They have this neat feature of drowning out the voices in my head. Many of those I'll play at 1.5x (or 1.7x) the normal speed. But those are talk only. When it comes to music podcasts, it's all normal speed.

Music podcasts are great in the Jeep and on the motorcycle. There is usually too much wind noise for talk.

And that brings me to a music podcast I was listening to on my way home from work the other day. It's called "KEXP - Music That Matters Podcast". From what I've experienced, it seems that different DJs from the radio station host the podcast - trading off for each. This provides a wide variety of music styles depending on the tastes of the DJ.

Now, to be honest, I listen to any kind of music except for rap and reggae. If it shows up in a mix, I'll listen - and even enjoy it - but not necessarily will I listen to an album's worth in a row. The particular episode I was listening to focused on hip-hop/rap music. In the first song the "n" word was dropped. Okay, it's "gangsta rap" and I can forgive that - once. In the second song the "n" word was dropped again. After the "n" word was dropped in the third song I skipped the rest of the podcast.

As I've joked before, I come from a predominantly Caucasian family. And as far as I know, we have NO history of slave ownership in my family tree. I say that because I want to make sure you understand what I'm about to say. Ready? "I HATE the 'n' word!"

Do you understand what I said? I HATE the "n" word. I do NOT use it. My dad summed it up for me once a long time ago. He said, "The definition of the "n" word: the lowest form of human life. Did you notice there wasn't a color in that definition? I've known white people who would stab you in the back quicker than a black man." My dad is a wise man.

Let me ask you: is the "n" word offensive? If so, why does ANYONE use it? I'm not just talking white people. (As a side, I remember a comedian mention once that there was no such thing as white people. He then held up a sheet of paper to his head and said, "If they are this color they're DEAD! We are all the same color - just different shades of brown.")

If it is offensive for a white person to say it, it is JUST as offensive for black person to say it. And don't give me that "A brother can call another brother a n****r" crap. I've NEVER heard a white man call another white man "cracker".

Should the "n" word die? Absolutely. Is it offensive if someone calls someone the "n" word? Absolutely. But the "n" word will NEVER die as long as a black person can use it. And as a word to the black people who feel they can use it: STOP IT!! Quit pushing a mixed message.

As part of my "research" for this blog (don't laugh, I research . . . sometimes . . . ) I came across the ONLY time a black person used the "n" word appropriately. The comedian Chris Rock used it as part of his "Bring the Pain" (1996) stand up show. And the gist of what he was saying was that he, as a black man, didn't like n****rs either. It's a very funny, but not-safe-for-work routine (and I'm not linking to it - research it yourself).

I was looking for a certain quote from Chris Rock (who was AMAZING as the 13th Apostle in the movie "Dogma", by the way), but found the above instead. Since I couldn't find the quote, I'll refer to an old "Bloom County" comic strip by Berkeley Breathed.

In the strip, Steve Dallas (recently having been abducted by aliens and having his brain scrambled - turning him from an ultra-conservative to an ultra-liberal - including a perm) has his parents over visiting. His mother is looking out the window:

Steve's mom: "That's the most adorable little colored girl playing outside."
Steve: "'Colored'? You're saying 'colored people' in 1983? You know better, Ma."
Mom: "Then why the 'National Association for the Advancement of Colored People'? I don't think negroes mind at all."
Steve: "DON'T say 'negroes', Ma! You can't say 'negroes'!"
Mom: "Can I say 'United Negro College Fund'?"
Steve: "You are baiting me, Ma!"
Steve's dad: "That's it. We're leaving."
Mom: "Stay put, Reginald. 'Mister socially sensitive' isn't through shaming his parents into enlightenment."
Steve: "Everybody just calm down. Let's agree to use the New-Age term 'People of Color'."
Mom: "People of Color".
Steve: "People of Color".
Mom: "Colored people."
Steve: "NO!!"
Dad: "We're leaving."

(Respects to Mr. Breathed. I pulled that from my copy of "Bloom County Presents The Night of the Mary Kay Commandos". I even had it bookmarked!)

To conclude: There will be no end to racism as long as we continue to label everyone. Get over it people. We belong to one race: the human race. That includes all people of all colors, religions, and sexual preferences.

And before you go calling me a "right-wing fanatic", remember: that's a label!

©Emittravel 2016

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Subterfuge Rejecters

"Conspiracy Theorists". Whenever that term is bantered about, images of people wearing aluminum foil on their noggins spouting off in full paranoia mode come to mind.

Whenever the desire to discredit someone, or at least someone's argument, was called for, the term "conspiracy theorist" was used. That would give the impression that (either) the person and/or their argument had no basis in reality, and that everything they said could be ignored.

Often this is the tool of those with something to hide.

Now, I'm not saying that everything uttered in the name of conspiracy is valid. Trying to get the thousands of people involved in the moon landing to go along with a hoax is far more difficult to swallow than whether or not we actually took one small step for a man . . .

But what I'm not saying is that everything uttered in the name of conspiracy is invalid either.

I find it rather funny that statements like "the majority of scientists agree" are used to give credibility to things like "man-made climate change", in order to silence those other scientists who don't agree. Especially with the track record of scientists' "facts". (Check out this video on birth control methods.)

Have you ever heard of Edward Snowden? Interesting fellow. There is a movie coming out about him. Oh, and by the way, whenever you see "based on a true story", or something similar, in regards to a movie, remember that all falsehoods require at least the tiniest element of truth to make them believable. In other words, don't let Hollywood be your source for historical accuracy.

Anywho. Edward Snowden has been called a traitor for leaking government secrets. Actually, I think I figured out why Mr. Snowden is living in an undisclosed location in the land of vodka right now: he proved that those conspiracy theorist nut-jobs were right! Their government WAS spying on them.

And the Emperor was not pleased that he was naked before his subjects.

Does this give credibility to the conspiracy theorists? I don't know. As the saying goes: "Is it paranoia if they really ARE watching you?"

I think it is time for the shoe to go on the other foot. The tables need to turn. The bread needs buttered on the other side (WHAT?!?)

Maybe we need to change the focus from those who don't trust, to those who OVER trust. You know, the lemmings that blindly accept what is told them by "experts" with agendas. Just because President Obama said that (man-made) climate change was real, doesn't mean it is true.

Maybe it is time that we call those individuals by what they really are: conspiracy deniers.

©Emittravel 2016

Monday, August 8, 2016

Stuff My Brain Says #78

Have you heard of these 2016 Presidential candidates:

Hillary Clinton (Democrat Party)
Donald Trump (Republican Party)
Gary Johnson (Libertarian Party)
Jill Stein (Green Party)

Well, I'm sure you've heard of the first two. The second two? Maybe. What I want to point out is that all four have something in common:

Clinton / Kaine
Trump / Pence
Johnson / Weld
Stein / Baraka

Did you guess it? Okay, one more hint:

This decision is considered the most important, first decision a candidate will make.

Give up?

They have all violated the Constitution of the United States.

By that I mean that they have each picked their "running mate". And that is unconstitutional.

According to the 12th Amendment, both the President AND the Vice President are elected separately. In the late 1960s that changed. Correction: the methodology changed; the Constitution was not. Which means that whenever a Presidential candidate announces their running mate, they have violated the Constitution.

Which is really confusing considering the following:

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

Nothing like starting off with a lie…

(For a more in-depth explanation, check out: "It's Broke. Time to fix it. Article #9".)

©Emittravel 2016

Monday, August 1, 2016

Leave Those TEACHERS Alone

Welcome to August. As of this writing, the days of Summer are beginning their quickening towards Fall. The Memorial Day cookout has passed, as well as the 4th of July celebrations. Now, the next major picnic on the horizon isn't until Labor Day (when we celebrate mothers giving birth?!?). And, as some would say, the end of that nice, long Summer vacation that is the envy of everyone who knows a school teacher.

Hog wash!

This particular post is not just to educate the so-called envious among us. Nor is it just to comfort those where the teacher in question is a spouse or mother. But rather, it is to comfort those who wear the moniker of "teacher" - boldly, proudly.

To bring this into perspective, I am one who calls his spouse a teacher. Not only a teacher, but a public school teacher no less.

This is significant, as my history includes a Christianity where the only proper school a teacher should teach in, and where the only school the progeny of our loins should be educated in, is the Christian (or private) school. As both the educators and the education of the public variety are (wrongly) considered less than second rate.

And what did this narrow-minded religious nut do? He married a public school teacher.

"Then the eyes of them were opened . . . " (Genesis 3:7a)

Somewhere in the middle of July my wife starts getting the questions:

"So how is your summer vacation?"
"Enjoying your time off?"
"Must be nice to have the whole summer off, huh?"

"Horse hockey!" - Colonel Sherman T. Potter

Read those questions again, but this time, give them a heavy coat of envy.

Let me share with you a bit of what I've learned being married to a public school teacher:

They get between three and four weeks of vacation a year; just like most of us. "Wait, J.P., your math is off. From the end of May until the end of August is more than four weeks." And you are right. EXCEPT, my wife (as most teachers can attest to) does not "start" vacation when the last school bell chimes. Oh no. She spends quite a bit of time finishing up paperwork and setting up schedules (of a large number of students that meet with a variety of different teachers with a large number of students). Then after that she is furthering her education (at her own expense) studying ways to better herself in her craft.

After that she gets a few weeks off.

And after that she goes back to the paperwork of future students, and reviewing and correcting schedules (as things change so much with students entering and leaving the district - not to mention having to coordinate the changes submitted by those other teachers effected by the previous changes).

Even during the Winter and Spring "breaks", a teacher spends much of their time working on end of quarter/semester paperwork, and preparations for the next quarter/semester. Add to that trying to be the family's "Wonder Woman" during holidays (preparation, cooking, cleaning, etc.)

The difference between us and them is that where we can pretty much schedule our vacation for at any time of the year, a teacher is UNABLE to take time off (unless sick - and even then they are working from home) from the end of August until the end of May.

During the school year a teacher works pretty much seven days a week, for far more hours a day than you. I have said this many times: (and remember, this is coming from a former religious fanatic) You couldn't pay me enough to be a teacher.

Oh, I could go on (and I have) here, and here, and here to name a few.

And so has my wife.

So, for those of you short-sighted folks who think being a teacher is easy money with summers "off", get a clue.

I look forward to the official end of the school year, for at that time I get my wife back. For the rest of the year (and such a long year it is) she belongs to your kids.

Oh, and if you are looking for an easy way to destroy marriage, and raise the divorce rate, go ahead and make it so kids have to go to school year 'round.

©Emittravel 2016