From June 30, 2013 to November 20, 2013



Entry Date: November 20, 2013



Entry Date: November 20, 2013

People really must have been raising hell with the media and Congress for the loss of their "health" insurance. I put the word health in quotation marks because your health is already messed up when you have to use the insurance. It is hospital and medical care insurance, not "health" insurance. Not only were their premiums and deductibles jacked up horrendously, but many of those threatened with loss of insurance after the end of 2013 couldn't make the Obamacare Web site work in order to find new "health" insurance. The way things were going, they might suffer being uninsured when Obamacare was supposed to eliminate the problem of uninsured and underinsured individuals. With a 2014 election of several Senate seats and all seats in the House of Representatives, the Democrats in Congress were starting to revolt. They did not dare run a campaign loaded down with voter hostility over Obamacare. The President had to attempt to roll back the mandated coverages until after the 2014 elections. This would mean that, after the 2014 elections, we would be right back where we are now, with tens of millions having to purchase high premium insurance. The question now is whether or not the President, acting unilaterally, can delay implementation of the Obamacare insurance policy standards, with the redistributive taxes disguised as premiums, until December 31, 2014. At present, consumers were to have purchased medical insurance policies that are compliant with Obamacare standards by 2014.

It is also doubtful that the people will ever get their old policies reinstated, or that the old policies will not still have some level of premium increase imposed on the old policy. The whole idea behind Obamacare was to bring in all the uninsured to increase the pool of premiums paid, and then to make the premiums soar upward (the hidden redistributive tax) to make sure that the uninsured people, particularly those with pre-existing conditions, will have their policies and claims paid for. It only made it harder for even more people to afford the insurance. So, will Obamacare be any better when it finally gets implemented after the 2014 elections? I think Senator John McCain (R-Arizona) is the clue to the answer. During the debate over whether or not to defund Obamacare, McCain attacked members of his own party, like Ted Cruz (R-Florida), for attempting to bring defunding forward in Congress a few weeks ago. Now, McCain is applying the verb "repeal" to the Obamacare law. McCain and the rest of the GOP leadership in the Senate did not want Obamacare challenged back then as they were afraid of how the media would attack the Republican Party just before the 2014 elections. The fact that McCain now not only wants to challenge the law, but get rid of it, is a good indication that Obamacare will not get any easier to swallow in December 2014. Add to McCain's flip-flop the Congressional Democrat defections that forced President Obama to attempt to delay implementation of the law until after the 2014 elections. Yes, both the establishment Republicans and the Congressional Democrats are too afraid to run for re-election with Obamacare on their records. Being that Congress made sure they kept their own liberal "health" insurance protection rather than imposing Obamacare on themselves, that is all we need to know about how all of them, both Democrats and Republicans, thought of the whole plan.


Entry Date: November 10, 2013

Through clever packaging, which revealed as few facts as possible, Obamacare became whatever any given individual or group thought it was. One man remarked that he thought Obamacare would bring cheaper insurance to him. "I felt it was like Christmas," he remarked, until he received his new premium and deductible information. They increased over 100%. "I wanted people who couldn't afford insurance to be able to get it, but I didn't think I would be paying for it," a twentysomething woman declared. Some people thought Obamacare meant free medical services. Others thought it was cut-rate medical insurance. Still more thought Obamacare was not relevant to their lives as they already had insurance. With the people ignorant of the program, and acting based only on their own subjective conclusions, Obamacare was put in place and started mestastasizing into the likely agency of our total bankruptcy. The confusion was built into the law ("We have to pass it in order to find out what is in it."--Nancy Pelosi) deliberately for this purpose. The only alternative is to stop giving politicians and the media the benefit of the doubt by constantly declaring them as incompetent. Why keep re-electing incumbents if they are incompetent? Why keep tuning into the same newscasts delivered by incompetents? We would all have to be totally incompetent and stupid ourselves to keep listening to people we think can't do anything right. I think these people are highly competent. They just don't like us very much, so they keep pulling this crap on us all the time.

We already covered how some pundits have pointed out how Obamacare forces coverage of things like maternity costs on single men and women who can't have children, and claim this is the reason for the increased costs of the insurance. In fact, real insurance does not operate this way. A single man with maternity coverage on his insurance policy has no chance of ever filing a maternity claim on the insurance company, so the insurance company incurs NO RISK of ever paying a claim. Such coverage should not result in huge increases in premiums. So, what is causing the higher premiums? Obamacare is a backdoor tax program, that's how. The insurance companies have been given carte blanche to TAX the insureds for covering the higher risk people and those who cannot pay, such as people with pre-existing conditions and those too poor to afford insurance. Consider all of those premium increases as a tax to pool more money to redistribute among the insured population by applying the excess premiums to pay for those who cannot afford to pay. By having the insurance companies impose the Obamacare taxes, the politicans do not have to take the blame for raising taxes, but can blame the insurance companies for all of it. Obamacare is a "public-private partnership" between the federal government and the insurance companies, so the taxes to raise the money to redistribute to the uninsured and underinsured is being handled by the private side of the partnership, the insurance companies who then become the unpopular scapegoats. Don't be fooled. The politicans and insurance companies cooked this puppy up together, and the insurance companies don't care how many of us hate them as long as their profits continue to soar as they are now.

Eventually, the insurance companies want out of the "health" insurance business. There isn't an institution in this country that could pay the massive bills coming for the Baby Boomers, who fall upon all goods and services in the society like a combination of the world's worst locust plague and an army of Huns descending on the economy. When they are done, nothing is left, something like the skeleton of a cow after pirhanas are done feasting on it. Keep in mind, all the insurance companies care about are numbers concerning future projections. Their actuarial people have already told them that, between the greed of the medical establishment, Big Pharma, and the declining health of the Baby Boomers (not to mention ten-year-olds with bodies worse than mine) selling "health" insurance is a prescription for a trip to skid row. Big Insurance wants out of the "health" insurance business. Obamacare is the transition out of the "health" insurance business for big insurance. Big Insurance wants the government to take it over with single payer, but the government is bankrupt, so don't look for single payer to solve the problem.


Entry Date: November 8, 2013

With some people having their individual medical insurance premiums and deductibles increase two or three times as a result of the Affordable Care Act entering into its enactment stage, some interesting facts came to light. The increases in the premiums and deductibles were attibuted to people having to choose a policy with additional mandated covered medical procedures. The additional procedures added by the insurance companies to meet Obamacare's mandated standards were blamed for most of the increases to the individuals' costs for their policies. The problem with this explanation is that many of the mandated procedures do not increase the risk to the insurance companies in many cases. There were stories of women past the childbearing ages being charged for maternity, contraceptive, and abortion services. Single men have to accept the same coverages, such as maternity coverage. No menopausal women or single men are ever going to need maternity, contraceptive, or abortion services. This means the insurance company has no risk whatsoever of having to pay any claims for maternity, contraceptive, or abortion services. These covered contingencies should be provided free of cost by the insurance companies to reflect the absence of any kind of risk of having to pay any claims for those covered events. This is the way insurance is supposed to operate, with higher risks paying more, and lower risks paying less. In our example, there is no risk of a menopausal woman getting pregnant, so her risk level for filing such claims is ZERO; therefore she should not be charged for the maternity coverage as she will never use it. Why this is being overlooked, I do not know, but such insurance policies should be reviewed on a case-by-case basis as coverage an insured is never going to use, but is only there to reflect a government mandate, should not cost the insured any premium increase. On the contract the coverages would be considered null sections of the policy, not applicable to the insured.


Entry Date: October 26, 2013

The Saltzmann Brothers Brewery circa 1904 from the Beer History Web site.

After getting up this morning I found that my strategy of using fitness walks of between 6 and 10 miles six days each week since late April/early May failed to get my legs ready for running four miles on the YMCA indoor track this winter. My heels and ankles were fried by early that evening, and walking was difficult until they loosened up. It was probably the result of being almost 61 as opposed to my 30s and 40s that caused it. I will have to gradually work up to four miles and higher, while working on stair climbers and stationary bikes for most of the aerobic work outs for the first month or two. Since it helped to keep moving, I decided to take a walk since the weather was not too bad, just very windy and only about 40 degrees, but I put on a few layers, topping off with an old Desert Storm parka to seal in the heat from the lower layers. This parka is actually thin, but uses a tight weave of cloth, which makes it a good wind breaker and enabled the warmth of a heavy wool sweater to be kept sealed inside. The parka has slashes in the sides that permit the wearer to reach inside the parka to pull out any gear from the pockets of the inner garments, or attached to a belt. I took my digital camera since I had noticed an old defunct oil well's remains up on the steep side of the ridge to the west of the McClintock Trail, right behind the Merisol Refinery on PA Route 8 North. The small GE camera was zipped into a nylon case and tucked into the pocket of a jacket I wore over the sweater and under the parka. I just wanted to get some pictures of the remains of the pump, some of the old pipeline that ran along the ridge, and two storage tanks below. One of the tanks was like a big wooden barrel with a coating of black over it, and a more modern steel storage tank, and these were spotted back in September when the McClintock Trail was completed.

The climb up the "Hog Back" as the ridge is called, was more treacherous than I thought. It is almost straight up. Some of the trees still in the ground are actually rotted, including one I grabbed, snapping off the trunk. The tree tangled in the one behind it, keeping me from getting dumped over the side. I found a sturdy fallen branch and used it as a climbing stick to finally get up to the pump, taking several photos. I started down the remnants of a path from the pump down to the storage tanks when I noticed something sticking out of the soft ground. It was a piece of brown glass. I pulled from the ground a glass bottle with the neck broken off. It looked old mostly because the brand name was raised from the surface glass and announced in script format that the contents were made by: Saltzmann Brothers Brewers, Oil City, PA. Some old time oil well worker decided to top off work with a bottle or two of suds, but when?

I took the broken bottle back with me and Googled the name of the brewery, coming up with a link to a "beer history" site that included a picture of the old brewery. Another link claimed the brewery was at 4 Union Street, while another stated it was at the corner of Plummer and Bissell Streets. I think it was at 4 Union Street as some of the buildings there, across from RK Virgile's Scrap Metals at 3 Union Street, look like sections of the building reproduced by drawing on the Beer History Web site. I will have to ask the people now using some of the buildings if their buildings were parts of the old brewery. I'll post whatever I find out. Saltzmann Brothers brewed beer and ale in Oil City during the following dates, which tell us that the bottle could be as old as 1890, but no more recent than 1920:

John J. Saltzmann 1881-1882

Palace Hill Brewery, John J. Saltzmann & Sons 1882-1888

John J. Saltzman, Jr. 1888-1890

Saltzman Bros, (Palace Hill) 1890-1920

Brewery operations shut down by National Prohibition in 1920-1933


The abandoned oil well pump with a view of how steep the ridge is. Note the trail and train tracks below.

This is the barrel-like storage tank.

This is the steel storage tank.

The larger building in the background is what remains of the 4 Union Street, Oil City location for Saltzmann Brothers Brewers. The tall chimney in the drawing does not appear in the photo, but part of it is still there.


Entry Date: October 25, 2013

With winter coming on soon, I had planned for some weeks now to move from the 6 days of walking each week to running on the YMCA's indoor track. Part of the reason for the walking was to get the legs in shape to take miles of running several days each week. Running will enable me to spend less time while obtaining the same results, or better. The last time I joined the local YMCA was in 1997. I ran the track this afternoon and surprised myself completing 88 laps which was 4 miles.

I had to go to the local Rite Aide to get some more of my favorite Beta -Sitosterol tablets to ensure that my prostate gland stays healthy. They cost a little over $20, but there were other brands charging $30 or more. As I checked out, I remarked to the cashier, "You should be thankful that you do not have a prostate gland. They cost a fortune."

FX ran Green Lantern again tonight. FX has run Green Lantern several times this month....I wish they would stop.


Entry Date: October 24, 2013


"Sieg Heil?"

I decided to change my return route from walking the length of the new McClintock Trail by going up the embankment below the Roman Catholic Church founded by Polish Immigrants to Oil City, The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. As I took a sidewalk toward the North Side downtown, I spotted another Holstein Cat on the front porch of one of the homes. The cat sported a "Hitler Mustache" under its nose, a lot like the one above. If you Google "Hitler Cats" you'll find that the name for these cats is quite common.


Entry Date: October 15, 2013

Another daring (and analogus) act.

Now that I am not on the road constantly, I will have to file music entries under another title. Since I downloaded some of these today from YouTube while at the library, on channels where advertising pays for the right to broadcast the songs, I decided on this new title. I was reminded of a song by Debarge from January 1984, a month when I did something very daring that was also foolish, I looked it up on You Tube. After that I decided to chase down three songs from the incomparable George Benson, and a few from the Bee Gees from the same mid-to-late 70s era as the George Benson selections. I have the titles and the links below rather than the Embed codes as I can't be sure that the advertisements will play on an Embed and the ads apparently help to pay for the rights. Just click on the link and hit the back button on your computer to come back here.
















Entry Date: September 7, 2013

The JC Lee Construction Company of Petrolia, Pennsylvania did all of the construction work on The McClintock Trail, which has been going on since June/early July. I noticed some of the work while walking the course I clocked on my car odometer at different points on PA Route 8 North. Lee Construction was working along the railroad tracks on the west side of Route 8, behind places like Casey's Lounge and Restaurant. I thought they were repairing the little-used tracks, not laying out and paving a bike trail parallel to the tracks. It is easier taking the trail than walking the shoulder of Route 8. I have seen some deer on the trail and an Osprey, but by the looks of some of the woods on the west side of the trail, it might be possible to run into a bear as well as a deer.

It is still interesting to walk through the streets of Oil City on the way to the trail, as I was never around the town enough to get to know it. The latest interesting thing I've seen is what I call "The Holstein Cat." This is a cat with black on white markings exactly like those on a Holstein cow. I have since found out most people call these cats "Holsteins," although it is probably not the scientific name for the felines. The two yellow cats and the gray cat down on Lee's Lane have found something different to do when I walk by their house. They sit in the yard, looking one direction, and do not move as long as I look at them. It is like they are playing at being garden gnomes or something.



Entry Date: August 26, 2013

The Boston Globe tweeted on the early afternoon of the April 15, 2013 Boston Marathon Bombing that the bomb squad of that city was conducting a "controlled explosion" within one minute of the twitter message. The "controlled explosion" would be across Boylston Street from the Public Library. Let this video explain the meaning of the tweet, which is no longer available through the usual channels on the Internet. The reported backpack bomb contained black powder as well as nails and ballbearings for shrapnel; however, black powder is not considered a high explosive, which detonates at above the speed of sound like dynamite or C-4. Black powder ignites, it does not detonate, which does not produce the kind of supersonic shockwave that causes traumatic amputations or disrupts internal organs.



Entry Date: August 23, 2013

I had to get a case of pink eye which made me go to the Emergency Room on a Sunday afternoon. The place was almost empty, and I was provided with a prescription for an antibiotic ointment for my eyes. The nurse also gave me a form instructing me to finally replace my retired, and now deceased, doctor by making an appointment with a doctor who was accepting new patients. This was back in June. At my first appointment, everyone asked me a lot of questions and entered them into laptop computers. They weighed me (I was overweight then, too, but not as bad now) and had high blood pressure, which has since gone down. I was screened for prostate cancer and did not have it after all the blood and other lab work was done. All that was left was a colonoscopy, as the doctor wanted me screened for colon cancer. That took from early July until yesterday to get done. I had nothing to eat all day Wednesday and that is all I will say about the "prep" work. I was called on the 21st and told my appointment was moved up to 7:20 in the morning on the 22nd. I lost my cab appointment, so I walked the two miles. The cab company promised to pick me up when one of the surgical center staff called. No one is allowed to drive home on their own.

I got there early, filled out my papers, and found a Web MD magazine with Hilary Swank on the cover discussing her project to reduce and eliminate malaria in the world. I decided to read that article, because maybe I might have a dream with Hilary Swank in it while unconscious during the procedure of exploring my nether regions with a TV camera. When I was taken back to prepare for the procedure, three nurses all asked me the same questions all three times. I began to wonder if I was being tested for Alzheimers as well as colon cancer. About the third time, I was asked if I understood the procedure. I answered: "You are going to stick a camera up my butt." The interview was over.

Now, I was "Number 4," which meant three were ahead of me at this hour. All I could do was worry about whether or not the Supprep "purge juice" got everything. My colon felt like Lindsay Lohan mistook it for a paparazzi after yesterday's torture, so I couldn't be sure if everything in there was gone. Whatever they gave me in the procedure room worked fast and it seemed like no time at all when I woke up. Unfortunately, reading the magazine before going in didn't work. There was no dream that included Hilary Swank in the cast. Instead, there was some strange, barely remembered appearance of Mister Peabody, a character from the Rocky and Bullwinkle Show. At least I found out that I did not have colon cancer, and there were no polyps to be bothered with, either.

Everyone wanted to know what I would have for breakfast, but since I couldn't drive, at least not early in the morning, I could only have some egg whites and Southern Style biscuits. They gave me what looked like a laminated document, as I sat up on the bed. I read it and tried to return it, since the lamination made me think other patients would get to read it after their procedures. The nurse told me to keep it, so I did, but really didn't want a souvenir. After eating breakfast, I followed the Mass on EWTN in thanks for a clean colonscopy, and settled down to rest until later in the afternoon when I would be up for driving. I hadn't eaten in over 24 hours and wanted some Italian food from Villa Italia as I had not been there in months as I had to lose some weight. Late that afternoon, I had a chicken breast, penne pasta, garlic bread, a salad with Italian dressing, and took a slice of peanut butter pie home. In the evening, I settled down to eat the pie, and picked up that laminated document, only to find the the top of the "lamination" was open. There were three more documents inside. One of them advised: "Return to eating your regular diet gradually." That caused some concern, but I finished the pie anyway. After all, everyone at the surgical center told me to go enjoy breakfast, so I did. The same page also warned about not driving for 24 hours, and it was too late for that one, too.

Another page included a photo of my colon. It didn't ruin my appetite, but I wondered about why they gave me a DMV-type photo of my colon? Why not give me four prints to review, so I could pick the one I liked the best, something like wedding pictures, or something? "Well, Doctor, I prefer the more serious pose over the more frivolous one. My colon has no time for jocularity."



Entry Date: August 11, 2013

Bryan Cranston (left) as chemistry teacher turned meth king pin Walter White. Chloe Grace Moretz as the wildly kinetic slayer of bad guys Hit Girl in the Kick-Ass movies.

As Breaking Bad nears the end of its run and the Kick-Ass 2 sequel is nearing its premier, I am reminded how many times Walter White caused his buddy and meth cooking partner, Jesse Pinkman, played by Aaron Paul, to react with a face contorted by horror. Whether it was watching White run someone down with a Pontiac Aztec ("I hit a deer," White lied to his body man), or blow up a Mexican king pin in a nursing home after rigging an elderly paraplegic's wheel chair into a bomb, White never fails to shock and awe his partner who slowly comes to fear the once mild-mannered high school teacher.

Hit Girl, played with aplomb by Chloe Grace Mortez, rescues the inept Kick-Ass character from being killed by the henchmen of the drug dealer he had just tasered, by slashing and stabbing them with a strange combination of sword and spear. Kick-Ass, a high school student who was playing super hero in a green wet suit, has his face frozen in shock as a 12-year-old girl makes short work of the drug gang and makes it look easy. After it is over, Hit Girl quips about Kick-Ass' useless taser: "That is one gay looking taser."

People who have watched both Breaking Bad and Kick-Ass might have their own idea about which character most often shocks and horrifies their sidekicks, but I have to go with Hit Girl, who almost scares Kick-Ass out of the super hero business. "I'm in way over my head,"Kick-Ass groaned after the fight was over.

"I'm the most horrible! I'm the most horrible!"


Entry Date: July 31, 2013

Yep, afer reading these, I know we will all be safer when only the police have guns.


Jacob Sullum

July 29, 2013

Early Saturday morning, Roy Middleton was rummaging through his mother's car in the driveway of his Warrington, Florida, home, looking for a cigarette, when he heard someone bark, "Get your hands where I can see them!" Middleton initially thought it was a neighbor playing a joke on him, but when he turned his head he saw Escambia County sheriff's deputies standing in his driveway. The next thing he knew, he says, they were shooting at him. "It was like a firing squad," Middleton told the Pensacola News Journal. "Bullets were flying everywhere." Middleton was lucky the deputies were terrible shots. His injuries were limited to a leg wound. "My mother's car is full of bullet holes though," he said. "My wife had to go and get a rental."

The deputies came to Middleton's house around 2:42 a.m. after a neighbor saw him reaching into the car and called 911. What happened after that, from the cops' perspective, is unclear. But let's say they were unnerved by Middleton's slowness in obeying the command to show his hands and feared that he was armed. Maybe he even moved in a way that suggested to the deputies that he might be reaching for a weapon. That scenario is in some ways similar to the one confronting Merritt Landry the previous night, when he shot a teenager who had hopped the fence in front of his New Orleans home. Landry said he shot the intruder, Marshall Coulter, because he seemed to be reaching for a weapon. Coulter was in fact unarmed, although there is little doubt, given his history of burglary arrests (his brother called him "a professional thief"), what he was planning to do after climbing the fence.



13 Fox Seattle

August 27, 2010

Spokane Valley - A Spokane Valley Baptist preacher has been shot and killed by a police officer.

Police say Pastor Wayne Scott Creach, was shot sometime late Wednesday night during a confrontation with an officer in an unmarked patrol car. Police say the officer had parked near the plant nursery Creach operated in response to concerns over late night car prowls. Creach, who lived next door to his nursery approached the officer and sometime during the confrontation the officer fired his duty weapon.


Entry Date: July 28, 2013

"I am the help."

Elisabeth Moss as Detective Robin Griffin in Top of the Lake

Robert Redford's SUNDANCE CHANNEL has produced enough Emmy nominated productions that Top of the Lake that the channel has arranged "binge viewing" one day marathons of the Emmy nominated mini-series. I saw two episodes of Top of the Lake last week when they were run before dawn, and finished with today's SUNDANCE CHANNEL marathon. Elisabeth Moss was outstanding as Detective Robin Griffin, investigating the disappearance of a shady citizen's daughter. If followers of The Killing think Detective Linden has a lot of things happen to her, Detective Griffin gets to run a gauntlet of personal disasters as well having to solve a case that many do not want solved. Top of the Lake has been nominated for an Emmy for best mini-series and best actress, Elisabeth Moss.


Entry Date: July 28, 2013

Jerry Seinfeld at the wheel with David Letterman on their way for coffee. Usually, Seinfeld shares a meal with his guest, but Letterman only wanted coffee.

Jerry Seinfeld's Web show, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, has received some attention in magazines like Entertainment Weekly. This is one of the best shows on the Internet and well worth a look as Seinfeld chooses a vintage car to pick up a colleague for some coffee, maybe breakfast or lunch, and some conversation about their careers as comedians. I have seen the episodes with Letterman, Don Rickles, Sarah Silverman, and Carl Reiner, who appeared with Mel Brooks. Brooks shared a story about being somewhere in a public place when an instrumental version of Brooks' Springtime for Hitler came over the sound system. The Michael Richards episode had Jerry show up in a battered Volkswagen done up as a kind of pick-up truck, complete with rust and duct tape. Letterman arranged for a Volvo for Seinfeld to drive that Paul Newman had retooled with a racing engine. Most of the episodes run less than 30 minutes and are great viewing. Stream a couple when you get a chance.


Entry Date: July 20, 2013

I've logged a lot of time outdoors, but not as much fishing as I hoped because of the "unsettled weather." My last outing was Sunday, July 14th. I attended Mass the night before so I could get up early and drive to French Creek in Franklin. French Creek was still swollen, muddy, and running fast, so I drove back to Oil City and tried Oil Creek and the Allegheny River. I thought fly casting would be out in the river, but there were two guys already flycasting the river, so I gave it a try, using mostly muddlers and stoneflies. I got a couple of hits on the stonefly, but missed both of them. It was good casting practice. When I caught up with the other fly fishermen, they had been using the kind of streamer flies typically used on salmon and caught several smallmouth bass on them. I'll try the streamers next time. It was good to see someone flycasting a wide section of the Allegheny. I usually use spin casting gear in the river, casting crank baits or spinners.

The population of Great Blue Herons is really growing. There were two watching the humans fish while hanging around the spot where Oil Creek joins the Allegheny. I've seen the herons several more times further upstream along Route 8 North. They must nest on one of the larger islands in Oil Creek. The family of wood ducks that live in and around Oil Creek had at least 8 ducklings this year, and there are many goslings among the Candian geese. I haven't seen any young herons yet.

My longest walk to reduce weight, lower blood pressure, and cut cholestrol took my up Route 8 North all the way to Rouseville, which is a round trip of about 12 miles. I have knocked off about 12 pounds and my blood pressure is significantly reduced. I also eliminated caffeine in an effort to shave numbers off the blood pressure, and it is averaging near normal numbers now. My new doctor is not overly concerned now, anyway. About August or September I will start running again, which is more efficient exercise.

You see different and strange things while walking sometimes, like the preserved skeleton of deer killed along the road, someone's past due bill from the long defunct Brody's Department Store in Oil City, and an abandoned 20 pound sack of Agway's top soil that someone tried to boost for some odd reason. On Lee's Lane, the cats like to lie on the pavement during the night and are still there in dawn twilight. There is a black one with white stockings that usually runs away when it sees me, but further down the street there is a gray cat and a yellow one that just lie there watching me walk by them while looking bored. The pavement must be cool at night for the cats. The rabbits are acting strange as it has been unusually easy to get close to them before they hop away. Maybe some of the rabbits that are older are having vision problems. South Side Oil City still has a large number of black squirrels, the black fur being a recessive genetic trait of the squirrel that is typically gray. The many stands of trees throughout South Side block a lot of sunlight, making black better camouflage for the squirrels than gray, so that gene must "turn on" when the canopy is heavy making gray squirrels black again. One woman saw a black panther or mountain lion near Mong's Ice Cream Stand on Route 257. Panthers were once common in this part of Pennsylvania, as the word "Erie" comes from the Iroquois Indiana language, which means "long tail," or "panther."

There is one lawn on Lee's Lane that is so well decorated with flowers, pin wheels, lights, a fountain, a rock garden, lawn furniture, and much more, that I will have to take photos and put them up. I should have photographed the mountain laurels and azaleas when they were in full bloom, but kept forgetting the camera and did not want to stop too long on the walks. You have to work your legs for a long time to get the benefits, but I will get pictures of that yard and some other sites before summer is over.


Entry Date: June 30, 2013

Dish TV is offering TeenNick along with a few other channels as temporary previews for subscribers to see if they want to add any of the channels to their present Dish TV service. I stumbled on to TeenNick while checking out some of these stations and watched Drake and Josh for the first time. The old Nickelodeon show was created by Dan Schneider, the same writer and producer who created iCarly, an extremely popular Nick show that attracted adults as well as teens and tweens. I wasn't disappointed when one of the first scenes was in the living room of Drake and Josh when Drake's gym teacher shows up. When the teacher sees that Drake's mother is actually alive, and not "lost at sea" as Drake once told him, Drake responds by throwing his arms around his mother, yelling, "Mom! They told me you were dead!" The gym coach, dressed still in his gym uniform, a t-shirt and shorts, with a whistle around his neck, gives Drake the real reason for his visit. Drake was failing gym.

A younger Miranda Cosgrove, who went on to star in iCarly, was taking all of this in from the living room sofa as little sister Megan. "How could you fail gym?" Megan taunts Drake. "All you have to do is show up." In most of her scenes, Megan acts like she is the only sane, and amused, spectator in this asylum of dazed and confused teen age boys. Drake's gym coach explains, "Therein lies the rub." The coach shows that Drake failed to attend any of the gym classes and would fail, forcing him to repeat his junior year. Drake eventually gets out of this predicament, but only after freely volunteering the information to Josh while Josh's prospective partner in a dance contest listens. "I'm flunking gym," Drake announces without embarrassment. This whole episode was hilarious. How I missed this show years ago, I have no idea.


Entry Date: June 30, 2013