Category Archives: A-Z of life


I was kind of a late bloomer in life.  I started liking members of the opposite sex at a relatively late age.  That same day, I started getting an outbreak of zits.  It was the first day of my junior year in high school.  Kelli was my lab partner in Biology the precious school year, but I didn’t pay much attention to her.  But she wore a tight white blouse and even tighter dark blue jeans.  WOW!

Later that day iin the cafeteria Kelli was carrying her food tray to a table when a fork fell off the tray.  She bent over to pick up the tray.  I was embarrassed by the resulting bulge in my pants.  I wanted to ask her out, but I wanted to check my appearance before asking.  When I finished eating, I went to the bathroom to comb my hair.  While combing, I noticed that my face had been infested with pimples.  This wasn’t one zit – that would have been bad enough considering I had never had a blemish of any kind on my face before.

My face looked like a zodiac map.  there were too many zits for “Connect the Dots.”  Feeling my face was like reading “The Bible” in Braille.  I wondered how this could happen to me.  There were no zits when I washed my face that morning.  My face was washed every morning because I was so afraid of getting a zit.  Now I looked like a pizza with extra pepperoni.

That evening was the start of the “Clearasil Drenchings”  I’d hold my nose and dunk my face in a bowl of Clearasil.  Then I took the pads (one pad for each pimple) – I wanted to make sure all of the zits were off of my face.

It took forever (a week) for those pesky zits to disappear.  I soon had the resolve and the muster to ask Kelli out, but by then she was already seeing somebody.

[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]



“Youth is wasted on the young.” – Mark Twain

If I could combine the energy and enthusiasm of my youth with the lessons I have learned and wisdom I have picked up along the way, then I would be able to get a lot more constructive things accomplished.  I had a lot of energy when I was younger.  Instead of doing something constructive like running for public office or building shelves for my “Hello Kitty” collection, I spent my energy partying until 3:00AM every night when I had a 7:15 class in the morning.  These days, if I don’t go to bed by 11:00PM, then I feel like I am burning the candle at both ends (Even though I don’t have to start work until 8:00AM.)

Another thing I wasted a ton of energy on is avoiding work.  Many times I would have spent less energy if I was to just do as I was told.  Not only did I waste a ton of energy avoiding chores, I ended up having to do them anyway, which used up more energy.

Both my job and my campaigning require a lot of driving and much time away from home.  The driving and the work I do from both tire me out tremendously.  Napping has become almost second nature to me.

There is so much more I want to write about, but i don’t have the energy.  Maybe a young person can write something in the comments below.

[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]


For those unfamiliar with Roman numerals, XVII is the number for 17.  Super Bowls are still numbered with Roman numerals, with the most recent Super Bowl being XLVI (46) between the Giants and Patriots.  Super Bowl XVII was my favorite Super Bowl.  It pitted my Redskins against the Miami Dolphins.  It was the first time I ever got to watch the Redskins play in a Super Bowl.  (They had played the Dolphins in Super Bowl VII, but I wasn’t born then.

I wanted to be like John Riggins when I was a kid.  He ran over people.  That looked like fun.  I liked running over people even though my mother said I was a bad boy when I did that.  He was a big part of the Redskins offense (which was explosive in those days.)

The game didn’t look promising at first.  It took a while for the Redskins to score a touchdown.  And as soon as they scored, they gave up a touchdown on the ensuing kickoff.  The Redskins trailed at halftime.  They trailed after three quarters.  The Redskins were facing a 4th-and-1 on the Miami 43 yard line.  It looked like a typical goal line offense-vs-defense.  The play looked like Riggins was going to go through the middle, but he went around to the left and went down the field for a Redskins touchdown.  The Redskins finally had a lead. I was a happy kid!  The Redskins scored a touchdown late in the game and won 27-17.

“XVII” is not a word in my opinion.  But I had to search for “words that start with ‘x” on the internet.  And according to a page I found, they included all Roman numerals that started with “X.”  I chose XVII because it was the first time I got to see the Redskins win a Super Bowl.  I could have chosen XXII or XXVI.  Both those Super Bowls were great, but XVII will always have a special place in my heart.

[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]


Note:  I will be reaching for straws for entries X, Y, and Z.

I got a medal detector for my 12th birthday.  It was what I wanted since the day I heard of people finding money with medal detectors.  There was a guy who found a 1905 nickle near the Potomac River.  I was hoping for a payday like that.

The Potomac was off-limits for me without my parents, but there was a park nearby.  I went along the walking paths and into the woods, but I couldn’t find anything.  Nothing was found while walking in my neighborhood.  I was beginning to think it didn’t work.  It did manage to pick up the trash can, but no coins of any kind.

Itwas late afternoon when I headed home.  There were no cars in the driveway.  I went in the house and went to the garage to put away the medal detector.  It started making loud rapid clicking sounds in the middle of the driveway.  There was nothing on the ground, so I figured I found buried treasure.

There wasn’t a jackhammer around, but there was a hammer and a chisel.  I placed an “X” where the detector was making the sounds and went to work as fast as I could.  My parents would be less mad once I found the treasure.  The cement floor was chiseled away and there was dirt underneath.  I took my mother’s gardening tools and started digging in the dirt.  It didn’t take long to find what made the metal detector go off – it was a bunch of nails that were buried.  I filled the hole and flattened it as much as possible.  The nails were placed on top of the toolbox.

My father found out about the garage that evening.  I was grounded for a month and my metal detector was taken away.  He never did thank me for the nails I found for him.

[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]


I grew up in our nation’s capitol.  Washington has a lot of tourist things to do.  There are a few things about living there that made me go batty.

The crime – People tend to refer to murders when talking about high crime rates.  Other places have a higher murder rate than Washington, but if you live here long enough, you pockets will be picked.  Even the pickpocketers are pickpocketed.   I have witnessed a pickpocket in action once.  I approached the pickpocketer and grabbed the wallet.  I was going to return the wallet to the person whom the wallet was taken from, but that guy stole the wallet from me.

Representation – Unlike people living in states, Washington DC does not have a representative in Congress nor do they have Senators.  As a local, I have often scratched my head over the people you people send here.  A plea to you:  Even though I no longer live in Washington, it’s still my hometown and I still visit often.  Use some discretion as to who you send here.  We Washingtonians don’t send our whack jobs to your town, don’t send yours to mine.

Tourism – Just because you are on vacation from your job does not mean you are on vacation from good manners and basic human decency.  The next person who bumps into me while texting will find his or her phone slammed to the ground and kicked into the street.  Please don’t litter.

Redskins – Washington is a much happier place to be when the Redskins are winning.  The Nationals and the Capitals have yet to win a championship and the Wizards were the Bullets the last time they won.  (They last won the championship in 1978, just before my 5th birthday.)

Washington is my hometown.  Please be respectful.  And put your wallet in your front pocket so your wallet doesn’t get picked.

[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]


Unity is a great tool.  I prefer unity to unions.  Unions are only good if everybody agrees.  With unity, everybody agrees and you don’t have to shell out money on union dues.

A union representative stopped by the movie theater I was working at.  I had just started working at the theater at the concession stand.  He came up to me and my co-workers when my boss wasn’t around and started spouting about the benefits of unions.  He said the union could get us more pay, better scheduling, and better working conditions.

Most of the others wanted a union, but I was looking for a better idea.  The pay I was making was minimum wage, but the scheduling wasn’t too bad considering that people usually only go to movies at night (with the occasional matinee on weekends and Wednesdays.)   I got free popcorn and soda and got to watch movies for free when I wasn’t working.  The bottom line was that I didn’t want to pay union dues if I could get the same benefits for free.

What we were able to do was limited.  Sick-outs was not an option because we were short-staffed to begin with and the boss had a reputation of firing people quickly.  If we went out on strike, we’d all be fired and he’d just hire a new group of people to replace us.

My first plan didn’t go as planned.  The plan was to collect as much money from everybody as I could and take that money and buy lottery tickets.  If we hit the jackpot, we could buy the movie theater and be our own bosses.  I was only able to get $5 ($3 were mine and $2 from the ticket-ripping dude.)  We had two numbers on one ticket and one number on another ticket, but we didn’t win any money.

My second plan was more successful.  I gathered everybody together at the end of the shift and we marched to the boss’s office.  We told the boss about the union guy and that we were thinking about joining the union.  I added that we wouldn’t join the union if we got a modest pay raise.  We were fired on the spot.  I reminded the boss what we talk to a lot of the customers because we knew them before we started working there and with a little chat, we would convince them to go to one of the other theaters in the area.

We got our jobs back and better scheduling, but we now had to pay half prize for concessions.   The boss was soon fired by his boss.  The new boss made me a shift manager.  He was fired a year later for embezzling funds and I was promoted to theater manager.  I was fired when I lowered movie ticket prices from $6.50 to $4.00 after headquarters wanted the price increased to $7.00.  I have been fighting the CineMafia ever since.

[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]


“The day goes slow, but the days go fast.” – Michael Weinheimer

I am fascinated by the concept of time.  Rushing to make an appointment only to have to wait (like at a doctor’s office) seems too common.  “Hurry up and wait.”  Short-term waiting seems to take longer than looking back at time.

I was in a relationship in the late 1990’s.  At one point it seemed like we would someday be married.  One day, she called me at work and started crying that she missed her period.  I drove her to the doctor’s office for a pregnancy test.  I could have written a hundred books in the time it seemed to wait to find out the result.  This was over a decade ago, but it seems like it was yesterday.  (She wasn’t pregnant, but before I could find out why she missed her period, she left me for another woman.)

There was a discussion I overheard the other day while rummaging through stuff at a nearby garage sale.  The garage sale cashier was playing a radio when “You Make My Dreams” by Hall and Oates was playing.  One of the customers was talking to somebody and said that that song was 30 years old.   I remember my eighth birthday and the first time I heard that song on the transistor radio (remember those) I got as a present.

Where did that time go?  Why can’t time fly like that while waiting?  If I could save time in a bottle…

[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]


I had mentioned in my other blog that I had gone to rehab because I was hooked on phonics.  I had mentioned that there was a word I was looking for and it was bothering me.  It turns out it was a word for this blog and this “S” entry.  The problem wasn’t that I  couldn’t think of a word that started with the letter “S”, it was that I couldn’t find one worth writing about.

I couldn’t write about sex because it’s been a few years since i got any.  I can’t mention names mostly because I don’t kiss and tell.  Kissing and telling doesn’t mean anything if you can’t remember the women’s names.

I thought about writing sandwiches because I like sandwiches.  But every time I tried to write about a sandwich, I became hungry.  I have lost too much weight to put weight on because I got hungry from a blog entry.

Somalia is out of the question because I had never been there.  Sweden is out because of an incident with the Hell’s Angels.  Switzerland is out because my Swiss Army Knife broke last week.

I couldn’t write about salads because I don’t eat salads.  Some people weren’t impressed with my swimming accomplishments despite my getting myself to work up to 10 laps in the hot tub.  There are “S” words I don’t know how to spell and “S” words I’m not allowed to know how to spell because my mother reads this blog sometimes.

I was stuck and the irony is that it took a week of rehab to realize that stuck begins with the letter “S.”

[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]


I grew up three blocks from the Amtrak station in Washington.  My parents and I often rode Amtrak to New York, Philadelphia, Richmond, and Honolulu.  One of my childhood dreams was to work for a railroad and travel the country by rail.

A few friends and I used to sneak into the freight rail yard and drink beers.  One night I took up a dare and hopped into an empty freight car.  The next day I was in Atlanta.  My parents were livid when they found out.  I ended up being grounded for six months.  (I was able to parlay that into two years when they found out about the beer.

When my grounding was over, I started hanging out at the freight yard again.  I became friends with a couple of hobos.  They gave me tips on how to ride freight trains without being detected and how to get off a moving train.  I still visit train yards once in a while.

[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]


“There are no stupid questions – only stupid people who ask questions.” – Chris Berman

My mother said that the key to knowledge is to ask questions.  My father used to tell me to quit bugging him with stupid questions.  Many of my childhood questions remained unanswered (some even to this day.)

I have learned a few things about questions:

  • Be sure the person you ask the question to is qualified to answer the question.  Don’t ask a plumber about erectile dysfunction (unless you like being laughed at.)
  • Be sure the person you ask the question can communicate.  While a baby may know where he or she came from, the baby can not talk and is not the person to ask where babies come from.
  • People whom you should avoid asking questions:  Comedians, mean people, drunks, anyone you have ticked off, people with accents you don’t understand, and lonely people who spend an hour saying everything except the answer to your questions.
Once you learn these questions lessons and apply it in your life, you will soon appear to be more intelligent.  That’s as important as being smart.
[This is part of the A-Z of Life series. Check out the other posts!]

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