“May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one.”


"This report is maybe 12-years-old. Parliament buried it, and it stayed buried till River dug it up. This is what they feared she knew. And they were right to fear because there's a whole universe of folk who are gonna know it, too. They're gonna see it. Somebody has to speak for these people. You all got on this boat for different reasons, but you all come to the same place. So now I'm asking more of you than I have before. Maybe all. Sure as I know anything I know this, they will try again. Maybe on another world, maybe on this very ground swept clean. A year from now, 10, they'll swing back to the belief that they can make people . . . better. And I do not hold to that. So no more running. I aim to misbehave." ~ Captain Malcom Reynolds

Monday, November 30, 2009

Saying Thanks

A quick note from the management.

Xerox is doing a great program right now. Please click on this link - it will let you choose a free postcard to send to a servicemember serving somewhere overseas, to say thank you.

Having been there I can tell you, even in these days of email and instant messages, getting something in the mail even from a stranger means a lot.

Show the men and women serving our country a moment of appreciation at this holiday season please. Thanks.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Officer down

Initial reports on the details are sketchy and unreliable, but by now everyone knows about the four officers killed today in Tacoma, Washington.

My prayers and thoughts to their coworkers and families in the days ahead.

Going to be one of those winters

Helped deal with the aftermath of another fatal accident today. At the same spot where a week ago the victim's granddaughter was killed in an accident.

Be careful out there people, please.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Un-fun calls

Worked another late shift last night - part extra patrol to help with the holiday crowds, part DUI hunt. In my typical fashion I waited til close to the end of the shift to find my drunk driver - some sort of curse I have apparently.

Fortunately I found him before he got in an accident and hurt anyone or himself; he was well over the limit and definitely in no condition to drive. The passengers weren't in any better state either.

The unfortunate part is that I know his father, who happens to have retired just a few years ago. Trust me, it's not a fun task to call up a friend at 1am to tell them that their son is in jail, the situation at hand and listen to that sigh of regret and frustration. He took it as well as can be expected, and without getting angry with his son or us for a bad situation overall.

Still wasn't a call I enjoyed making.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Ummm..... yeah

Seriously, if I've arrested you on felony charges, please don't call in to communications to leave me a Happy Thanksgiving message. Just kind of creepifying.

Kthxbi.

Giving thanks

I am thankful for a loving wife who has stuck with me through good times and bad, and who is my pillar of support and calmness when I need it.

I am thankful for my two incredible children, completely unexpected blessings who are brilliant, fun and growing wonders that I cherish every single day.

I am thankful for my health, for the doctors and medical care which enable me to continue to live and work when I could very easily be unable to.

I am thankful for a job I love, that lets me help people and challenge myself and in which I get to pass on my knowledge for others in the future.

I am thankful for those of you who read my ramblings, the comments you share and just having the outlet when I need it.

and I am thankful I live in a place where all of this is possible, where I have the freedoms to enjoy such privileges and rights.

May your day be filled with thanks as well.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

part three

Guess I could edit, but anyway...

part of today's fun was working on updating one of our lesson plans. Which included some time in google and wiki land digging up various pictures of past bombings and certain explosives. I feel sorry for the poor fed guy who thinks he has a good database hit until he pulls up my file and realizes I'm a bomb tech...

More Wednesday

Today continued well. Made the first batch of the winter chili, along with a big pan of cornbread. Everyone seemed to enjoy the meal.

Got some work stuff done on the computer, cleaned the kitchen and a few other things. Apparently this quiet day off stuff can be productive.

Already done

It's a pleasant relief to know that two days before the madness even starts all my holiday shopping is done.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

:(

Mongo tired. Long week. No muse. Much stupid.

Go sleep now, hope to blog soon.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Another poor choice

Sometimes folks ask me why I go after DUI's so much - why I'll go out of my way to try and find them when citizens call them in, why I put in the extra shifts to hunt them, even knowing how much of a pain everything will be come court time. I get asked why I can't just cut them a break, or give them a ride home, that it won't ever happen again.

But then folks will do things that put it back in my mind. Like the officer we had a couple of months back who got himself arrested for a DUI on his night off. Bad choices on his part, and as unfortunate as it is to say, I don't have a lot of sympathy for it. Especially when you are more than 3 times the limit - cop or not, you make certain choices and pay the consequences.

Well, last night was another of those reminders as well. Fortunately I wasn't working it, but got most of the details today. Nothing I'm posting that isn't in the papers, but I won't identify much more than that.

Seems one of our officers ended up going to stop a car. Said car decided to run instead of stopping - less than five minutes later the driver had managed to head-on into a tree and died at the hospital.

25 years old. Already on a suspended license for a DUI once this year. Alcohol a factor in this crash as well.

Not only did this young lady end her own life through a series of bad choices, but now her family & friends have to deal with the after effects as well. Plus the officer involved is dealing with things. Internal and media scrutiny, Monday-morning quarterbacking of his choices and everyone talking about him is one thing. But try to imagine how he's feeling as well - the thoughts in his head of what different that he might have done to change the ending, what he could have done in those five minutes that would have possibly altered a lifetime.

The driver made her choices, both in drinking, in choosing to drive, and in running from the police. Just like countless others do every night in some way. Hopefully someone else out there may look at the results of her choices, the ripples of destruction outwards that touch so many others, and instead of driving find another way.

But if not, I'll be making my choice as well - hoping to keep it from ending in disaster.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

So what did you do today?

Went in to work this morning for a quick meeting, then had just left and was trying to decide on which of several projects I have to work on I felt like digging into.

Then I got a call to take care of some old ordnance, and my plans for the day changed.


video


I get paid to blow stuff up, shoot guns, and play with a dog. Seriously, can it get any better?

Today's geek funny

Monday, November 16, 2009

I got nothing

Busy day here but nothing to really write about, plus my muse apparently took a brief vacation.

Back soon.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Needs to be said

A few of the blogs I read are having bits go around and around regarding terrorism, militant Islam, etc. Unfortunately some of those debates are getting rather heated & a few people IMHO have gotten blinded in a panic-mode response.

I just will say this - things like "The only solution is for Islam to be exterminated" sounds exactly like something that a few people got together around 70 years ago and had a shot at with another group...

Genocide is not the answer folks. It's hateful and stupid and closed-minded. From either side.

Find another way to solve cultural issues than by just eliminating one of those cultures.

Random

Long day here, so keeping this short.

Started out by getting a call on my way to teach at in-service. A potentially no-good, very-bad situation afoot, which fortunately turned out to be nothing more than a threat to do so, rather than the actual event. Sorry I can't write more about it than that.

Spent my afternoon and evening working a semi-off-duty assignment at one of the local university basketball games (both women's and men's teams). Not much of a sports fan here (meaning not really at all), but from what I observed both teams actually were playing with a great deal of sportsmanship and drive, as opposed to being a free-for-all like so many professional events you seem to read about. However, I made two more interesting (to me at least) observations during the events:

- What happened to people learning proper behavior during the National Anthem? While it was nice to see the crowd standing, and hats removed, I would say less than 10% of the people held their hands over their hearts (and probably only about 5% of the athletes themselves). Just found it curious.

- I'm not saying cheerleading has changed in the 20+ years since I was last in school, but the last time I saw dancing like that brass poles and dollar bills were involved. Plus, I'm really not sure at the point of cheerleading anymore - it certainly didn't seem like the crowd or the team paid them much more notice than any of the other folks on the sidelines throughout the games.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Great inside joke





Lovecraft would be happy!

Ack-ward moments

Stopped today at the store on the way home to pick up some things for dinner and soup for my wife (who isn't feeling so well). It was the tail end of a training day, so I wasn't in my regular uniform but still had the badge and gun showing so it wasn't hard to figure out who I happen to be.

So I get to the register and the young-ish cashier asks "Oh, are you an officer?"

"Yeah, I am. Just a job really," trying to head off any further conversation when I just want to get home and don't feel too chatty.

At which point she kind of giggles and says "Oh, don't be silly. Don't you know every girl has a thing for cops and firefighters?" This said with a strange smile as she rings up my order.

Now I would like to stress here that I really can't recall being hit on at work ever, especially because of my uniform and job - and I would like to think it's because I have generally worked the high-crime and drug project areas of town, and not because of any particular hideousness on my part thank-you-very-much! But I was starting to get slightly creepified by all this, as Jayne would say...

Figuring I would deflect whatever this was easily enough my response was "Ummm, sure, but everyone likes the firemen more, it's no big thing," trying to laugh it off.

"Not me! I like the cops, in fact I want to collect the whole set!" with what I can only say was an attempt at an alluring smile...

At this point I think I made the fastest grocery store exit by a paying customer in years.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veteran's Day

Today there are hundreds of thousands of men and women away from their homes, serving our nation and people. Millions more are still alive who have done so in the past.

They live without many of the conveniences, privileges and even freedoms that most of our society takes for granted. They are subject to being called up at a moment's notice to pack their bags, travel far away and be gone for however long when needed.

These men and women are currently fighting and dying overseas, and even in our own nation against those who would do us harm. More die each year in training accidents - because doing certain jobs is hazardous in an of itself, much less when under fire. Others have suffered injuries and wounds in both combat and peacetime which will burden them for the rest of their lives.

And, for almost the past four decades, every single one of these military members has done so willingly - has chosen to enlist and serve, be it for a short term or an entire career. They weren't drafted, they weren't forced - in fact they are given multiple opportunities to make sure that the decision is done willingly before they ever commit.

From the lowest ranked person stuck doing what some would see as a thankless, menial job to the highest ranked officers rubbing shoulders in Washington, these people have placed the needs and good of others ahead of their own. Be it for patriotic reasons, a need to challenge themselves, or the chance for an education otherwise unobtainable, they swore an oath and followed through to protect and defend this nation (and often others), and to pay the sacrifices needed to do so, even with their own lives.

As I've said before, I am proud of my service. I was fortunate to have opportunities I would have never encountered otherwise, to go places and meet people literally around the world, and to learn about who I am and what I am capable of when need be. I've also had the privilege of meeting and learning from those servicemembers throughout my career. My fourteen years in the Navy helped make me who I am today in every way, to include introducing me to the woman who would become my wife and the mother of our children.

So - to every Sailor, Marine, Soldier and Airman out there - thank you. Whether you are serving now, or have moved on, I am grateful that you gave of yourselves. For my friends who have given the ultimate sacrifice throughout the years, I pray you are at peace and know that you will never be forgotten.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The joys of community

Despite the fact that the internet is a much larger place these days than long ago, when to even get on a BBS you had to know a bit more than where the power switch was, it's still a joy to find a community of intelligent, broad-knowledged people who are able to converse and help on a variety of topics. Case in point is the fact I recently did a Linux install on the laptop, just because I felt like trying it again as opposed to to messing with another Windows upgrade. Ran into a few wireless networking issues, and in a very short span of time on the gunblogger conspiracy channel I was able to get the problem resolved with the help of folks who didn't even need to look up the solutions & were more than happy to take the time just because.

Always nice to have friends, even if you never meet them in person.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Credit where due


Taken from Roberta -

Good to see, thank you for standing up for what is right.

EDIT - Apparently the picture didn't come out too clearly to read - the Islamic Society of North America issued a condemnation of the Ft. Hood murders and I wanted to make sure they received full credit for doing so. Too many times we have criticized the Islamic community for when they have not spoken against such things - I wanted to make sure we give equal credit to a group that does.

And, for those not aware, this is the largest Muslim organization in North America.

Moments from policing...

For the first time in far too long I found myself working this afternoon with nothing pressing on my "to-do" list - so I spent some time just driving around and helping the road units with a couple of calls. Most of it was pretty quiet, but I did end the day helping catch a shoplifter from one of the local malls. This was fun & memorable for the following:

- Discovering that apparently as the former diver on the call, I'm the guy who gets to chase said shoplifter into the retaining pond and stream when they get scared and stuck. Hey, somebody had to do it & they were all looking around with that stare of trying to figure out how to avoid getting dirty.

- While Gore-tex lined water-resistant boots are a great joy in most situations, they have one downfall: they do just as good of a job keeping water in after they are submerged. Not clean, pretty water either, but an afternoon of feet soaking in green scummy water til I got home. Hopefully the good wash and soak will have them back to new.

- Apparently boosting a selection of clothing for your significant other's birthday is considered OK these days. Guess that helps with the holiday budgeting.

- When said perpetrator has items from three different stores stolen over a period of days it's going to be an annoying report to write. Glad I got to hand that part back to the road guy.

- No miss, your prior "indecent exposure" charge I can guarantee you was not simply because your skirt was too short, no matter what story you're trying to tell me. I'll bet my next two paychecks that it's because you were turning tricks to pay for your habit, just like today's little adventure stemmed from.


All-in-all it was a fun afternoon and was nice to just play simple police stuff for a day.

Off to cook dinner and spend time with the munchkins to give the wife a break.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Ft. Hood

First, my thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families at this time. May those who are gone be at peace, and those wounded recover quickly.

Second, Ofc. Munley has hopefully forever resolved the argument on the abilities of women to be good cops. Her quick actions and bravery kept this from being a much worse scenario for everyone. May she also recover quickly and return to the job she obviously loves.

Plenty of other folks are already discussing the pitiful fact that none of these soldiers was able to protect themselves, as well as the curiosity about the lack of an investigation into the shooter despite numerous warning signs which should have raised flags. I'm curious as to how much of that had to do with certain changes in priorities which have been pushed through in the past year...

Also interesting is some of the data not making it to the U.S. media. The Telegraph is reporting a possible connection between the shooter and the 9-11 hijackers - something tells me that even more will be coming out as the investigation progresses. Whether this was a lone player, influenced by others, or part of a conspiracy, the fact is that jihadist terrorism has once again struck on U.S. soil.

Finally, as an active shooter instructor for my department, I hope that other agencies took note of the successful resolution before more deaths - entering as soon as possible and engaging the suspect saved lives, as opposed to just setting up a perimeter and waiting.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Cowboy advice

Can't say I've always lived by 'em, but worth remembering...

* Your fences need to be horse-high, pig-tight and bull-strong.

* Keep skunks , bankers and lawyers at a distance.

* Life is simpler when you plow around the stump.

* A bumble bee is considerably faster than a John Deere tractor.

* Words that soak into your ears are whispered...not yelled.

* Meanness don't jes' happen overnight.

* Forgive your enemies. It messes up their heads.

* Do not corner something you know is meaner than you.

* It don't take a very big person to carry a grudge.

* You cannot unsay a cruel word.

* Every path has a few puddles.

* When you wallow with pigs, expect to get dirty.

* The best sermons are lived, not preached.

* Most of the stuff people worry about ain't never gonna happen anyway.

* Don't judge folks by their relatives.

* Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.

* Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you'll enjoy it a second time.

* Don't interfere with somethin' that ain't botherin' you none.

* Timing has a lot to do with the outcome of a rain dance.

* If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop diggin'.

* Sometimes you get, and sometimes you get got.

* The biggest troublemaker you'll probably ever have to deal with, watches you from the mirror every mornin'.

* Always drink upstream from the herd.

* Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment.

* Lettin' the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin' it back in.

* If you get to thinkin' you're a person of some influence, try orderin' somebody else's dog around.

* Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God...

Update

My father-in-law came through his surgery ok - according to the doc things were actually pretty clean inside the torn muscle, so that should help the healing. Still, he will be out of commission for a few weeks with several months of rehab after that.

We appreciate all the comments and thoughts for him - I will be sure to pass along the well-wishes. Thanks all.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Good wishes please

My wife's father had a bit of an accident today, and will be going in for surgery tomorrow. I know that she would appreciate any prayers and good thoughts you could send that way.

I have other stuff to post about but think it will wait for tomorrow when we are all more rested.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

More fun

Spent the past two days putting together some nice training scenarios and teaching some new guys a few advanced demolition tricks. Got to blow stuff up, have fun and all that it entails... Yet again, hard to beat my job!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Review

Well done! First broadcast show I've watching in ummmmmmmmmmmmm yeah, that long - but I liked it. We'll see how it develops.

Though she and I both had to laugh at the irony of Alan Tudyk catching a stake through the chest in a sci-fi show... If we get any more cameos I may die laughing.

GARRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!

I DO NOT CARE ABOUT ANY POLITICAL CONCESSION SPEECH ENOUGH FOR YOU TO INTERRUPT MY GORRAM SHOW TO MAKE ME LISTEN TO IT!

As my lovely wife just said - this is why broadcast TV sucks.

Busy

No bloggy tonight - V is on.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Benefits package

Pretty much have to love a job where I spent the chunk of my afternoon shooting other people's ammo out of a full-auto weapon, and tossing the magazines around and generally abusing the whole package as part of a T&E process. Hard to beat that.

New music

Apparently all of us 80's remnants are influencing music again - Yay! Stolen link from Christina at Lucrative Pain, but here's a neat new song to take us all back...

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Random note

I'm guessing I've spent just a bit too long in the world of bombs, special weapons and all that stuff... When the wife asks about what I'm working on alongside dinner, and I explain it's a simulated device for the week's training cycle - and her only response is making sure I have all the stuff I need it must be a sign of something...

Rainy fall day

Woke up to a beautiful morning of rain and falling leaves, chilly enough to want to stay nice and warm without being so cold it's uncomfortable. Spent the first two hours snuggled up with the kids as they enjoyed a mix of morning shows and playing and laughing with daddy. My poor wife has finally come down with the crud which afflicted the rest of us, so we were able to let her sleep late and hopefully work towards getting better.

Nothing dramatic planned today, which I am thrilled with - let the kids play, do some reading and just have quiet family time. Work and normal life will return soon enough.

For today's funny link, Mr. Tayler has been talking with bomb guys again I see...