Archive for April, 2011

Independent Health Comes Through!

You may have noticed that I punctuated my header with one of these (!).  I don’t whip out exclamation points casually.

A Vice President from Independent Health called me yesterday.  He indicated that he had read our blog post “discussing” our treatment by IH (click here to read).

I prepared myself as a lawyer for the verbal lashing that was to come.  At a minimum, I’d get a “cease & desist” speech, advising us to remove the post.

Instead, the Veep informed me (in a very nice manner, I might add) that our post had given him reason to revisit our case.

Picture me doing a silent happy dance behind my desk while my puzzled secretary looked on. Continue reading

The Smuggler’s Blues

I'm a Haitian pirate, yo!

Hello, my name is Island Boy, and  I believe strongly in certain things.

Like a true son of the Caribbean, there is a pirate in my soul yearning to break free.  Most of the time I can tame this renegade spirit of mine.

But, some things are just beyond my control.

Like the need to bring my most awesomest toys and booty (Ha!  I love that word!) to preschool every day.

My totally great toys are trucks, power ranger masks, spidermansmen, and any kind of weapon that can shoot, stab, stick or filet you with hot lasers.

My booty (I said it again!) consists of anything that I see in the house that looks cool: food coloring, power tools, bug spray, full-sized Halloween skeletons (on second thought, that one is a little too scary for me), stray nails, tacks and other wonderfully sharp objects. Continue reading

Advertising We Can Believe In

I’m a capitalist.  I love my country.

But, yesterday I was kicked in the nuts twice by greedy corporations while the Government cheered them on.

Unlike others who might adopt a “woe is me” ‘tude, and sit around at the local barber shop bemoaning how America is no longer like it never really was, I will deal with this like a mature, well-adjusted adult…

…by making fun of the corporations by using their own publicity against them.

As Rod Serling used to say, submitted for your approval: Continue reading

Hot Cross Buns

My mom and a very young Subway Dude in the kitchen at Thanksgiving.

My mother was a foodie. She loved talking about food.  She loved cooking and baking.  She loved cookbooks.  She didn’t actually eat a whole lot, but that’s another story.

I grew up loving every meal I had as a child.  Weekend breakfasts were special.  Music would be blaring on Saturday and Sunday mornings.  My dad, a fabulous guitarist, loved bluegrass and gospel music when we were growing up.  We often had fresh fruit salad with lime juice and grated lime peels.  We would also have some baked good my mother had whipped up.  We had special weekend breakfast plates, which I have and we use for birthdays.

Weekend lunches were usually popcorn, apples or pears and cheese.  Sounds simple, but my goodness, so delicious.  This would be eaten after the weekend errands had been run, after my dad had cleaned the house and while watching whatever sporting event was on that afternoon.  My dad would probably be ironing his clothes.

I was always excited to see what we were having for dinner.  Everything was homemade.  My mom’s salads and salad dressings every night were to die for. Continue reading

Running Hats

Spring Break 2011 involved a lot of running.  I was hoping I would be running in shorts and short sleeved shirts despite the fact that I would be running in Western NY.  Alas, it was not to be.  Not quite anyway. Continue reading

The Octagonal Mind of Mark Twain

All modern American literature comes from one book by Mark Twain called Huckleberry Finn.  If you read it you must stop where the Nigger Jim is stolen from the boys.  That is the real end.  The rest is just cheating.  But it’s the best book we’ve had.  All American writing come from that.  There was nothing before.  There has been nothing as good since.

Ernest Hemingway, Green Hills of Africa (1935).

A vigorous discussion with my neighbors led to my rereading of The Adventures of Huckleberry FinnI wrote about this back in January.

In short, the publication of Professor Alan Gribben’s new edition of Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer touched off a firestorm.  You may remember that Gribben’s version substitutes the word slave for Twain’s word nigger in the text.  The NewSouth edition is intended for young and high school readers.  Gribben does not seek to replace Twain’s original version. Continue reading

Army Talk (Part Three)

Lawyers with guns: Rest easy, America.

This is the third of a three-part series.  To read Part One, click here.  To read Part Two, click here.

The military (known in the biz as “DoD”) has it own lingo.  The Army (“DoA”) is further sub-specialized.  Here are some more aspects of Army culture and Armyspeak that I find amusing:

Army branches — Everyone is trained to do a specialized job.  These jobs fall into four categories: Continue reading