Nothing’s Easy Anymore!

In anticipation of the upcoming solar eclipse on Monday, the 21st of August, much to-do can be found everywhere with regards to protecting one’s eyes during the event, no matter where a person views the celestial extravaganza.

eclipse-Andalusia

Courtesy of Time Magazine

At my particular vantage point in the Philadelphia area, the eclipse will appear only partially; although, I’ll be happy to watch the rare occurrence regardless.

I had seen a total eclipse once before in March 1970, looking at the phenomenon through my arc-welding helmet.

The path for ultimate viewing of the forthcoming,  total blackout of the sun by the moon follows a marginal course roughly 70 miles/112.6 kilometers wide, running diagonally across the U. S. from Oregon to South Carolina.

As seen in the illustration above, roughly three quarters of the sun’s surface will be covered by the moon in my region.

To prepare for this, I scoured Amazon.com to find a suitable pair of solar-eclipse glasses. Most of the ones available reminded me of those 3-D spectacles worn in movie theaters back in the fifties.

3-D Glasses-02

Photo by LIFE magazine photojournalist J. R. Eyerman

They’ve always looked silly to me. Never tried them at a 3-D movie, but wore them while reading 3-D comic books. They were quite the craze when I was a tyke.

NASA and the American Astronomical Society advise to use solar-eclipse glasses or other solar filters from recommended manufacturers.

Viewing the sun or an eclipse while using any other glasses or filters could result in loss of vision or permanent blindness.

Another warning was to look for this specification marked on the glasses: ISO 12312-2, the international safety standard for filters used to directly view the Sun’s bright face.

Finally, after searching through several pages of solar glasses, in which a good portion of them had been sold-out already, I found the perfect pair:

Solar Eclipse Spectacles – Shade 14 Goggles CE Certified Safe Sun Viewing, Adjustable One Size Fits All, Better Than Glasses! Solar Filter and Viewer (Black) ISO 12312-2 Compliant.

Essentially they’re welding glasses that cover the eyes completely, blocking out any light from coming in around the sides, top and bottom; and they look cool too.

Having ordered them and waiting for the goggles to ship, hoping they’d arrive in time, I logged onto Amazon to check the status of the item, and found it was no longer available on their site; but the order was still listed in my account profile.

Disturbed by this, I sent the third-party shipper an e-mail:

Something is fishy regarding these spectacles. I noticed the page that lists this item is missing from Amazon, and my order has been “being prepared for shipment” for the past three days. Am I going to receive this order during the expected range stated? Thanks in advance for your response.

They sent me a prompt reply:

Hi Mike.
Just arranged the package for you.
I think you will receive it next Monday.
Thank you.

I’m always leery when someone says, “I think,” but answered back to say thanks, and that a shipment confirmation from Amazon with a tracking number from USPS arrived shortly after they notified me.

“So everything seems to be hunky-dory. Thanks for your help,” ended my response.

Two days later, after noting it hadn’t shipped yet, I fired another inquiring e-mail into cyberspace, aimed at the vendor’s inbox:

According to the tracking info, USPS hasn’t received the parcel and only a label has been created. I hope it’s going out today. What’s the holdup? Are you out of stock?

Their response:

Me too.
I think it will go out today.

That was on Friday, the 11th, and there was the “I think” again.

Meanwhile on Twitter, what started out with my bragging about the new spectacles, turned into a tremendous tirade:

Twitter-spectacles

The last entry in my timeline above was at 2:58 a.m. on Saturday morning. Later at 9:31 a.m., I received notification from Amazon, telling me they hadn’t received confirmation from the supplier of my order for the spectacles, documenting if they had sourced the item from a recommended manufacturer that complied with ISO 12312-2.

“We suggest that you DO NOT use this product to view the sun or the eclipse,” the e-mail read. “Amazon is applying a balance for the purchase price to Your Account (please allow 7-10 days for this to appear on Your Account). There is no need for you to return the product.”

Dagnabbit, I thought. Now I’ve got to get another pair for the eclipse. Walmart and 7-11 were a couple of recommended vendors of compliant solar glasses, so I visited two of each, who were all sold-out, until finding a pair at a third 7-11 in Croydon, Pa.

solar-glasses

Solar Glasses from 7-11

Not too bad-looking, at least the pair will protect my vision. I had also ordered a solar filter for my 500mm lens on the camera from a recommended vendor for the occasion too. That arrived in a few days after my placing the order.

If worse came to worst, I would be able to watch the eclipse through the camera, with which I plan to take a boatload of photos anyway. I practiced using the filter yesterday.

Figures after I was all set up, the clouds rolled in, and the sky became completely overcast. Just my luck, but I was able to see the filter is going to work fine:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The spectacles arrived on Monday the 14th after all. I had to needle Amazon Help on Twitter once more:

Twitter-spectacles02

To make a long story short, pardon the cliché, the weather report for Monday’s solar eclipse in Philadelphia calls for rain. I called it, didn’t I? Can’t say the forecast is a self-fulfilling prophesy, albeit; but that goes to show you, nothing is easy anymore!

Might have to take a trip to Asheville, NC, where it’s supposed to be partly cloudy on Monday, or wait until April 8, 2024 for the next total eclipse to occur close-by to me in the U. S., which will pass through Western Pennsylvania, Upper New York State, Southeastern Québec through Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and the Maritimes:

total-eclipse-2024

Eclipse Predictions by Fred Espenak, NASA’s GSFC – http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/

Hope to see it.

Thanks for your continued support and stopping by to allow me yet another diatribe for something I can’t control and irks the hell out of me.

Instead of placing my latest cover here, I felt this was more apropos:

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There’s a Sucker Born Every Minute of the Day!

A couple updates from prior diatribes are noteworthy.

Firstly, last week’s entry about the broken cup holder in the Cooper, damaged as a result of the mechanic’s smashing into it with the front seat while the car was being state-inspected, has yet to be resolved.

“I don’t trust the glue,” the technician said when I stopped by on August 4th, a few days after the fact. He had told me previously, the epoxy adhesive might repair it. “I’m afraid the pin may break and you’ll have coffee spilt all over the place.”

The reason the vehicle inspector had moved the passenger’s seat forward to begin with was due to his dropping another customer’s set of keys on the floor behind it, inadvertently destroying the swinging cup holder that was in the way.

Try to envision that happening in the photo above with a bucket seat, barrelling forward and hitting the cup holder straight on. It’s made of plastic. The hinge pin would shear in a flash.

The auto repairman, who’s also the owner of the one-man shop, said he ordered a replacement for me, which should arrive in a few days. “Do you know how much that cup holder cost?” he said.

I told him about the one from Amazon in the previous illustration for $76.79, and said I felt bad for him. At least he was honest about it.

“It is what it is,” he said. “It was my fault. Stuff happens (to put it nicely).” The proprietor told me he’d call when the holder came in.

Another week has passed and no phone call, prompting me to pay him a visit on my way out yesterday. “What’s the deal?” I said.

“That’s what I’m wondering. Let me give them a call.” After about five minutes, the mechanic came out of his office and said he had forgotten to give the supplier his tax ID number, which held up the shipment. “It should be here on Monday. I’ll give you a call when it comes in.”

That satisfied me for now. We’ll see come the beginning of next week.

Secondly, on a recent post from a month ago, regarding my entering the latest Publisher’s Clearing House Super Sweepstakes, I had posed the question:

I wonder how many more times Publishers’ Clearinghouse will be sending out another form on which to paste stamps and mail back to them without ordering anything, before the sweepstakes end? Probably until I order something.

On the following week, another notice arrived, stating I should go to their Web site and register an additionally assigned Super Prize Number, that will increase my chances of winning. In doing so, I gave them my e-mail address. Big mistake!

Afterwards all kinds of daily junk mail with offers to buy sundry paraphernalia, publications and more ways to win some cash landed in my inbox, filling it continually with more trash until I unsubscribed to their barrage. It actually worked, I’m happy to say.

Two days ago, I received an official-looking correspondence from Publisher’s Clearing House, alerting me by letter to take action on a forthcoming envelope that’s going to arrive in the next couple of days, from which I need to send in still another validation form to win their Super Prize Sweepstakes.

“Don’t be one of those who have ignored this packet and whose invalidated number was the winner, only to have the grand prize awarded to an alternate who sent back their validation form,” the notice read.

So today, I received that package. This time I looked through all the brochures and leaflets, examining every one before throwing them out, to find a lonely sticker that needed to be placed on the return validation form, as well as another sticker with my new Super Prize Number printed on it.

By golly, that makes three numbers I’ve now validated. I even bought something this time: a griddle with an 18″-long, by 10½”-wide, non-stick surface for frying up bacon, eggs, pancakes and whatever else. The item comes with a free spatula too. Oh boy, I can’t wait to receive that! I’ve been using a small skillet for years.

Maybe now they’ll leave me alone, but I doubt it. Wonder if my odds have decreased any? Most likely not, because all who entered are probably dumb like me and sent in all those additional validation numbers.

Worse yet, according to the official rules, the Super Prize drawing won’t be until 28 February 2018. How many more packets will be sent by these hucksters to rope me into validating additional numbers to win, and possibly buy some more items? Only time will tell.

As mentioned in comments attached to the previous tirade, Rie Waits and I finished our latest outstanding duet: a humorous, corny, early country-music ditty, originally sung by Tennessee Ernie Ford and Kay Starr, called, “You’re My Sugar.” I hope you enjoy it.

Thanks for listening and stopping by; and as always, for your continued support.

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Curses, Foiled Again!

“Procrastination: hard work often pays off after time, but laziness always pays off now,” expressed a meme I posted on Twitter for #WordlessWednesday. It garnered one like.

Perhaps my faithful followers were waiting until later to respond, but I deleted the post before they could. That’ll teach them to wait.

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New Inspection Stickers for 2018

Speaking of which, the Cooper is finally state-inspected. Note on the photo to the left that the stickers expire next August.

The previous ones were valid until July 31st.

I pushed it off for another thirty-one days successfully,  getting the car safety-validated yesterday on the first of this new month.

Next year I’ll push it off until September 1st.

For the past three years, something set me back each time I took it in. The authorized facility stripped the oil pan’s plug when doing an oil change along with the vehicle inspection in 2015, causing the car to leave little puddles of oil underneath.

To get that remedied, a Mini service center had to replace the pan. I sent a copy of the bill to the derelicts who caused the problem in the first place. They ended up paying for it, except for the $50.00 pan gasket, saying they supply one with oil pans they sell, and refused to reimburse me for it.

The hassle of taking them to small-claims court for the remainder wouldn’t have been worth it.

Last year, I took the car back to them for just the inspection, during which they wouldn’t pass it for a ding in the windshield, even though they let it slide the prior two times. I had the Cooper’s annual inspection done there for several years in a row at that point.

Methinks they were trying to get back some of the cash they paid me for the oil pan, figuring I would let them replace the windshield. I took it again to the Mini dealer for replacement, and then to a different authorized inspection center altogether.

The mechanic at the new facility said he would have passed my vehicle if the ding was not in line-of-sight, which it wasn’t. The car passed ultimately with flying colors.

That windshield repair cost me quite a bit. Ended up getting a brake job done at the Mini service center as well.

This time around, I took the Cooper to the same new station as last year, dropping off the vehicle at 8 A.M., and picking it back up at 10:30. The car passed inspection without a hitch. Two weeks ago, new tires were put on by the Mini Dealer, just in case.

This morning, I stopped at WaWa to get a coffee and a doughnut. Attempting to place the 20-oz. cup in the car’s swinging, plastic cup holder, I couldn’t because it had disappeared. “Now what?” I said, not having noticed it was missing yesterday.

Calling the inspection station, I asked the mechanic if he had my cup holder.

“I broke it accidentally while pushing the front seat forward,” he said. “I going to try and glue it back together.”

“When were you going to tell me that?”

“Sorry, I forgot. Call me tomorrow. I’ll let you know.”

“You think you can fix it?”

“I don’t know. If not, I’ll pick up another one for you.”

I found one on Amazon. It costs $79.00 plus S&H, not a cheap accessory.  We’ll see tomorrow what he has to say.

That just goes to show you. There’s always something.

For my latest Cover Your Ears, please allow me to introduce an unplugged acoustic version of an old standard love ballad most famously performed by Les Paul and Mary Ford, called “I Really Don’t Want to Know.”

I’m presently working on another duet with Rie Waits, which hopefully will make it here for my next tirade. Thanks for stopping by, and for your continued support.

 

 

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Don’t Bug Me!

bug-running in-circlesEver come across a bug in your home, not an electronic device; but one which usually has a chitinous exoskeleton, three sets of legs and body parts, with two antennae?

Then there are centipedes, spiders and millipedes, something that isn’t desirable to find in your humble abode by any means.

My family lived over a grocery market when I was a child.

Our apartment was infested with cockroaches, bred downstairs from all the foodstuff, produce and such. My folks tried everything for getting rid of them to no avail, short of moving out, which we did eventually.

It took a swan dive by one from a shelf above the kitchen table, onto the yolk of my mother’s fried egg, to finally initiate the process of our vacating the premises.

My older brother and I captured the bugs, and we used the insects to hold races in a wooden assembly made out of plywood and 1″x2″ strips, wood-glued together to make an enclosed rectangle with a center divider that formed two straight runways inside.

Staging areas at one end had removable gates to launch the contestants on their way. Plexiglass covered everything to keep the roaches from climbing out.

At the finish line, we’d place grated cheese or breadcrumbs for attracting the arthropods to the other side. Strange how kids can make due with wretched conditions and have fun in the meantime, not to mention how warped some can be.

I tried to use the makeshift racetrack for a project at my school’s science fair, but the teacher didn’t permit it.

After we moved to a house in Hackensack, N.J., my parents had a hell of a time keeping the roach population from exploding into another infestation. Even though Mum and Dad had gone through great lengths to make sure everything was pest-free when packing up our stuff, it was unavoidable that either a few bugs or some eggs slipped through and were transported to our new digs.

After absorbing multitudes of insecticides and bug bombardments, our new home became devoid of the nasty nits. Luckily us kids didn’t mutate into monsters as a result, or did we?

Once in a while, I discover a water bug in the bathroom of my flat here by the Delaware River. Sorry, but I have no qualms about stomping on it. What’s interesting to me, however, is the way insects run around in circles at full speed when realizing danger.

I assume it’s instinctive behavior in many of the species, perhaps used to confuse predators and give the bugs time to figure out a route for escape. From my expecting that, very few avoid the wrath of a size 10-½ foot, or rolled-up reading material left on the commode’s water-tank lid.

That leads me to the next subject of this diatribe. The other night I had a strange dream of working as an exterminator in the White House for Donald Trump. My tenure there didn’t last long, as is common practice for many of whom have been under his employ.

After detecting a blond muskrat had found its way into the chief executive’s boudoir, bagging and setting it free outside on the North Lawn, I was fired for dereliction of my duties due to disposing the official first hairpiece.

You should have seen the prez, running around in circles when he discovered it was missing and couldn’t find the rug before he was due to appear at a press conference.

Trump-folly02-s

Faked image by Mike Slickster

I think he looks better that way, sort of kinder and gentler, don’t you?

The gardener had given the toupee back to his boss, saying he saw me dropping it out of a canvass bag in the front yard and walking away, resulting in my immediate termination.

I woke up laughing, and had one of the most sound sleeps in ages. Methinks it had to do mostly with the heat wave’s breaking and the cooler temperatures, allowing me to nod out with all the windows open, even requiring my use of a blanket.

The following is my latest Cover Your Ears, a tune written by Ray Davies of the Kinks, reminiscing about his growing up in the East End of London, England, and his sister who loved to go out dancing.

 

So much for another weekly tirade, thanks for stopping in and for your continued support.

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No Laughter is Prohibited!

No No Laughter

What has happened to everyone’s sense of humor?

Can’t we poke fun at anything anymore without feeling like a pariah afterward?

In this politically charged society: be it correct or incorrect, racially motivated, downright hateful, selfishly inspired; or truly symbiotic and inclusively beneficial, where has all the laughter gone?

We’re living in some of the most tumultuous times since I can remember. At my particular age and standpoint, many have passed us by. For those much older than I,  a myriad can be recalled most likely.

In the United States, the Great Recession was relatively recent. Prior to that, 9/11/2001 spawned the war on terrorism which is still being fought. Mind you, this list is covering the big ones. Surely others can be noted.

For baby boomers, the oil embargo of the ’70s and Nixon caused much financial woe and political turmoil. Before that, the Vietnam War and protests of the ’60s had divided the country like it is today.

Let’s stop there. Perhaps that’s the last era of major significance, comparable to the present. Granted WWII and WWI, not to mention the Great Depression between them, were even more catastrophic; but unfortunately, not many from those generations are around anymore to complain about the way things are today.

Being caught between politically polar opposites is no fun either. Probably the term I hate the most that’s spewed more than Carter has pills—when was the last time you heard that expression? Shows my age, by golly—is calling people “libtards.”

Talk about being a pariah nowadays happens when or if someone admits to being a “liberal.” Why is that such a dirty word? It’s not any more offensive to me than is the expression, “tea-bagger.” Left, right, or center, everyone is entitled to their own opinions, and not being berated by bigots who think they’re better than the rest.

Individuals get bent out of shape about those using the word, “retard,” chastising the latter for being insensitive and crass, for which I agree: yet another politically incorrect slur that’s freely expressed for those with differing viewpoints.

Admittedly, I used the pejorative, but only as kid, which indicates to this writer how childish an adult can be when using it.

Poking fun at something is human nature but leads to ridicule too often, which is going overboard, especially when done with the intention of hurting someone. Social Media is guilty of that, for never before its conception had someone the opportunity to say something hateful anonymously that would never have been said directly to anyone’s face.

Getting back to laughter, methinks people like to be miserable. Maybe that’s the reason for the lack of perceived merriment. The hoi polloi are afraid to laugh because it might make them feel good.

WW-WordlessWednesday45

Political spoof with Mitch McConnell’s head superimposed over model being smacked by Bettie Page.

God forbid they express some form of amusement over one of my jokes.

Perhaps they ignore it out of spite for whatever reason, be it intimidation, or paranoia that the comedic gesture was aimed towards them; or they want me to feel miserable too.

As mentioned in one of my tweets, “One thing I found about Twitter and most everywhere on Social Media is that people like to share their own stuff but not the limelight.”

That could be true as well for real life. It’s tough living as a cynic. That’s probably the root cause for my dilemma, but one can’t teach an old dog new tricks.

My latest cover, another bit of hard work, musical talent (in my humble opinion) and something out of the ordinary that’s usually ignored by my Social Media followers and so-called friends, was inspired by my needing to get out of town to clear my head, and away from this dreadful heat we’ve been experiencing in the Philadelphia region, as usual for this time of year. Hope you enjoy it:

Thanks for stopping in and allowing me another tirade from which to vent my usual frustrations, and for your continued support.

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A Politically Correct Or Incorrect Tirade?

WW-WordlessWednesday44-G

A Political Spoof

So, what’s there to bitch about today? Climate change? Naw, that’s fake news, even though a one-trillion-metric-ton iceberg has just broken off of Antarctica and is now floating around in the Southern Ocean. How did that happen, I wonder?

Can anyone say, “China did it”? Nay, twice this time, that would be too outrageous a statement to make; but then again, someone of power and persuasion might utter it. Remember when pulling out had a sexual connotation?

That’s what the U.S. just did with regards to the Paris Climate Accord. There’s a snowball’s chance on the Senate floor that we’ll ever admit to global warming. Wait, one did survive for a short-lived moment. My bad.

Summers lately have been progressively warmer than the ones before it. What’s causing that? Could it be…, Satan? Maybe, because it’s been hotter than Hell.

Bit the bullet and made an appointment to have four new tires installed on the Cooper. As mentioned last time, I’ve been putting it off but want to take a trip up North to bask in cooler temperatures. Don’t trust the ones on there now, as they are quite old and beginning to exhibit dry rot.

Been losing pressure in one of my back tires regularly also. Thank goodness they are run-flats. The treads are getting low too. At first I thought someone was letting the air out of them, as I seem to have enemies here; but it’s the same tire all the time. Must be a slow leak.

Going to get a wheel alignment and oil change as well. That should make the car roadworthy for a while. I’ll wait until getting back to get it state-inspected.

What else? A couple of weeks ago, I mailed out my entry for the Publishers’ Clearinghouse Sweepstakes. Used to enter them all the time. Never won, though. Seems since the Internet took off, I stopped receiving entry envelopes, and was surprised to find their latest one in my mailbox.

Figuring it can’t hurt to enter, I did as they instructed, pasting various approval stamps on the entry form, not ordering anything, as they say it’s not necessary to win. Sent it out at the end of last month.

Yesterday I received notification that my entry had been received and given a SuperPrize Number, provisionally added to the Winner Selection List, to be validated only upon their receipt of my returning yet another entry form by pasting more approval stamps onto it, including one that I had to search through all the leaflets of their advertised products to find, after throwing them out into the garbage. What a mess!

Not ordering anything again, but was tempted by a few sundry items, I made sure all the necessary add-ons were included with the latest entry form before sending the envelope on its way.

The Super Prize is for $1,000,000.00 in cash, plus $5,000 a week for life. Man, what I could do with that! Chances of winning, however, are 1 in over 2,000,000,000. That’s two billion, by the way. I’d have a greater chance of getting struck by lightning.

According to the National Lightning Safety Institute:

1. ASSUME –

4 CG flashes/km2/yr/average

House is 10 X 20 m2 = 200 m2

Direct strike to house when lightning hits within 10 m

Predicted strike (1200 X4)/1 000 000 =

4.8 X 10 -3 or once ea. 200 years

Therefore – 1 out of 200 houses will be struck per year.

2. ASSUME –

USA population = 280,000,000

1000 lightning victims/year/average

Odds = 1 : 280,000 of being struck by lightning

One in 280,000 doesn’t seem to be too much, compared to winning the Powerball Lottery, which is 1 in 292,000,000 chances. Still, those odds are a lot better than winning the Publishers’ Clearinghouse Sweepstakes.

One thing I did find that had worse odds than all of that, is the chance of getting hit by a falling satellite, which is about 1 in 21,000,000,000,000, or 1 in 21 trillion chances. With my luck, that would happen before my winning anything.

I wonder how many more times Publishers’ Clearinghouse will be sending out another form on which to paste stamps and mail back to them without ordering anything before the sweepstakes end? Probably until I order something.

Well, that wraps up another tirade, way-ahead of Saturday’s deadline again. Hope you are remaining cool in your neck of the woods. Thanks for stopping in and for your continued support.

For my latest cover, please enjoy this rendition of the Beatles, “Help.”

Until the next time, ciao.

 

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The Life of a Lazy Bum

Lazin-Bristol-Basin-s

Lazin’ at Bristol Basin

Here’s a topic to which many scriveners can relate. Is it still a no-no to end a sentence with a preposition?

According to Merriam-Webster, no, it’s not. So, perhaps the thesis sentence for this essay should read, “Here’s a topic many can relate to.”

This writer is too old-fashioned to feel comfortable doing so, however.

A recent trending topic on Twitter was: #SignsThatYoureOld, those of which are revealed to me regularly on a daily basis.

Not using a terminal preposition is one of them, along with the many aches and realizations that growing older brings forth to this aging baby boomer.

My main contribution to that hashtag’s thread was one is considered old when he or she looks into the mirror and sees his/her father or mother there instead. Then again, that’s a lot better than seeing no reflection at all. I see my pop in there all the time.

Someone commented on my post that one knows they’re old when looking in the mirror and wondering who the geezer is in their bathroom.  My response to that was about my avoiding the mirror whenever possible and not taking many selfies.

Reading my subscribed-to AARP magazine and periodicals doesn’t help either, making me paranoid about the latest dangers found through studies performed about eating my favorite foods and partaking in habitual pastimes.

Being a lazy bum can’t get me into too much trouble. What complicates matters is being a procrastinator on top of that. Both afflictions are synonymous, I suppose, which justifies or cancels each other out.

inspection-stickers-2017

This year’s inspection stickers expire at the end of this month.

This month’s lazy-fare, a play on words for the term: laissez-faire—translated literally from French to mean, “Let it do,” or figuratively as: let it be—is the yearly procrastination for my getting the Cooper inspected, which is due by the end of July.

This year, I should be able to push it off successfully until August 1st, extending my requirement for another month next year. There’s a method to this idiosyncrasy.

Today, I adjusted all my calendar watches to the correct date, which were a day behind due to only thirty days in June. No problem and smooth sailing for that chore again until the end of September.

My passport expired at the end of June. I waited until May to renew it. Took five weeks for me to receive the new one, just in time. I haven’t left the country yet. Maybe a trip to Canada to get the first immigration’s stamp put in the back of the booklet might happen soon; although, the car needs new tires, for which I’ve been putting off getting a new set.

I really should do that before inspection anyway. Then maybe I’ll take a long trip to clear my head. The vehicle has run-flat tires, meaning if they puncture, the car is still drivable due to reinforced sidewalls to keep the car buoyant, which costs about $250 per tire plus alignment and installation.

Hate to spend that much money.  No spare came with the car. The Cooper doesn’t have room for a spare tire, unless I put down the back seats and keep one on top of them; but that would look lame.

Been putting off writing my weekly drivel in this journal as well. I’ve been slack as a result of the extended 4th of July Weekend, and skipped last week’s edition. So now I’m ahead of the game for once and have completed this week’s way before deadline.

My latest cover is over a week old as a result. Please allow me to share it with you:

Thanks for your continued support and for stopping in.  Oh-oh, there’s a terminal preposition in my closing sentence.  What the heck, might as well live it up.

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