Last dance with Mary Jane

Day 3 of the flu.

Feeling about the same.


Had to suck it up, get dressed and head for the grocery store.

Decided what I needed was mind over matter.

My Halloween costume!

After all today is Halloween.

Once I put on that ridiculous pot head costume, I caught myself smiling.

Just what I need:  Something fun to get my mind off my diseased state.

On to the pharmacy, the grocery store, the gas station and the restaurant.

It was amusing:  Lots of people and their cameras, catching a glimpse of the sickly chicken butt parading around town as Mary Jane.

In a few hours I was home.

Mission accomplished.

Making the most of a miserable situation?

Or just a complete idiot?

It was my first and last dance as Mary Jane.

Not exactly what I had in mind.

Not exactly up to my usual game.

But the laughter and the nonsense were just as good as the pills the doctor gave me.

Strike that:  It is a fact of life:  It’s hard to feel bad when you are laughing.





The blimp has landed






Just the kind of day we Irish cherish.

Grab a cat and a book and hide in the comforter.

Oh wait.  I have to work.

The morning commute is miserable, with the glaring lights in the misty fog.

The work load is heavy, everywhere I look.

And the truth emerges:  When we are overloaded in one area of the operation, we stop being productive.

We work in an interdependent environment: Take a hit in one area, and the processes no longer function the way they should.

It’s not just here, where I work, it is the foundation of all businesses, even our government.

We hear about the maverick blimp, on the loose, heading out of Maryland, and into Pennsylvania.  Jet fighters are summoned to find the massive balloon. It finally pops its weasel and takes down power lines and lands in a corn field.  Now what?  Geez.  If only we had not let that fatty fatty 2×4  get loose.

And if only we had not allowed the breakdown…..

3 days left in October.

3 days to fix the problem.

3 days to get that enormous blimp out of the corn fields and back to MD.

When will we learn that we are only as good and only as effective and profitable, as we are when we devote our energies and resources to the weakest link?

Ok, so tomorrow, the rain is moving out.

The blimp is no longer up in the sky, creating havoc.

It’s another chance for us to get it all together.

It is possible.

Actually, it is expected.

We will succeed.



After many years of working I have learned that despite the odds,

We will do it.

Our future depends on it.





“Oh, earth, you’re too wonderful for anybody to realize you.”

A whirling dervish.

The wild wild west.

A tumultuous Tuesday.

From dawn to dusk, a frenzied attempt to get it all under control.

Some days are like that.

Oh yes, the hours whiz by.

As one takes a deep dive into unexplored and unexplained territory.

Hoping above all, that what one has done, was, at least effective, and at most, spectacular.

Usually it falls somewhere in between.

And then a voice from a peer:  “How do you keep it all together?  Don’t you ever get angry?  Or lose it?  Aren’t you ever in a bad mood?”

I blink, and try to respond in a reasonably intelligent way.  “Huh?  Oh, well, yeah.  I do, sometimes, I guess, lose it. I remember once, late December back in 63, oh what a night.”

I slink away, and realize that I might have a major problem:  Where is my passion? Why am I not going bananas when things go wrong? Why don’t I demand and insist and put on my red shoes and dance the blues?  After all, the most effective people make it very clear:  Do it. And do it now.

I, on the other hand, have a wishy washy approach.  “Ok. So.  How’s it going?  Can we talk?  I know you are busy, but if you have time, can you update me on this issue?  I really appreciate all you do.  Yes, I know it is an impossible task, so, can we come up with a compromise?  A solution?  What do you need? And how can I help?

Oh how we differ.  All of us. Leaders lead.  Gamblers play.  Thunder always happens when it’s raining.  And some of us just like to do the impossible, with the help of others.

Suddenly, I am 15, at the school play, Our Town, and from off stage, Emily enters.:


“EMILY: “Does anyone ever realize life while they live it…every, every minute?”

STAGE MANAGER: “No. Saints and poets maybe…they do some.”
Thornton Wilder

Well, I am no saint, and no poet, either, and I have lived my life without really living every minute. But I have learned one thing:  That on a tumultuous Tuesday, when the world is turning upside down,  the best thing I can do is to acknowledge those who support me.  And to treat them gently and with kindness.

Oh what a cupcake I am.





Reflections on a Monday

Overheard today:

Puff Daddy? What’s with the crying? And what do you have in your mouth?  And why, oh why, do you insist on putting it in your toy box?

What the hell happened to your voice? You sound like froggy. Ok. And you even look like froggy.  Hey, froggy, will you marry me?  Hold it.  I hardly know you. But I can’t resist a frog who sounds like Kenny Rogers.

Step up. Go for it. Be a leader.  Apply for the openings.  You can do it.  Leaders are not born, they evolve. Just remember, nobody likes a crab or anyone who has crabs.

I went to the watering hole, to have a drink.  The usual crowd was there, except for Gary.  Where are you Gary?  Oh yeah, Gary, such a character, now a part of the universe. Good bye Gar.  Do any of us really know when our time is up?

Driving home, I witnessed the last of the glorious colors of autumn. I am not a photographer, nor a reporter.  I am just me, enjoying what I see, every night, on my way home. What a spectacular sight!

The Chicken Butt has fed the cats, had a beer or two and made dinner.  Another Monday. A very challenging day for this old goat, but one that I must admit was a keeper and a winner.  A day like no other, and yet, like all the rest: A day that held the possibilities of making a difference.  Not for me, but for you.



The munchies

What is the origin of Saturday?



The day we all pooped out and sat?

And why did we, in the USA decide that the work week was from Monday to Friday?

Who makes these decisions?

Was it God?

Did God say, about a billion years ago:  Hey, after eating those hybrid apples, the people of the United States are doomed to work at least 5 days a week. And, mind you, for a minimum wage.  And in the year 2016 there will not be a raise in social security payments. The gas prices are too low.  Now, once, they go up again, to ….Oh let’s say $5 a gallon, we might consider a $20 raise.  What?  No, not monthly.  Just a once in a life time raise.

And Congress agreed, while they were reving up the odds to fry Hillary.

And after 11 hours, Hillary sneaked out to smoke a joint, and had a few cocktails, before chomping on a honey crisp apple.

Meanwhile, the Donald blasted his opponents, and proposed sealing up the country, and promised to spend his own money to build a wall around the entire country, unless, of course, Hillary got elected.  In that case, he would be moving to China, to teach the Chinese how to open casinos.

And the Native Americans laughed their asses off, as they sold their cigarettes and opened the bingo halls, much to the chagrin of the Catholic Church.

And Putin invaded Syria while Iran laughed. And Canada?   The last I heard is that they don’t give a damn, now that they have legalized MJ.

As for my future?

I am moving.

To Ontario.

And opening a bakery.

I will be a millionaire.





Patricia, Captain Bligh and reorganization.

Sometimes, we have nothing to say, us bloggers.

We just pop in here and let our fingers do the walking.

How many of us really make any kind of impact on the world?

Who the heck cares what we have to say?

Today Patricia is capturing the attention of the world.

She is huffing and puffing and howling her way into Mexico.

I happen to sit across from Patricia.

She huffs and puffs all day, every day, and she gets absolutely no press.

She tries to obliterate me on a daily basis, sneezing, blowing and howling, but on a much tamer level.

“Bless you” , I say, as she honks into her tissue, 40 or 50 times a day.

As Abe once said: “We are now engaged in a great civil war.”  Ooops, wrong address.  I stand corrected.

“We are now engaged in a great redesign.  Our traditional hierarchy is being challenged, as we move towards the great pumpkin, Charlie Brown.”

My brow furrows, as I reflect:  “Hey we already do function as a team, every day, in every way.  And probably the most effective teaming I have witnessed since Abe L and I dated back in 1864.”

But function and finality are fickle. We must rise to the occasion, to take on the challenges that a young, new team must face.

If only, I could be….. a contender.

Oh Marlon!  Ain’t life grand?

And Marlon responds:  Got a doughnut?

And I slink into my sexy steel toed shoes and climb the stairway to heaven.

Oops, I meant, prepress.







Partnering up yours.

“No rant tonight, Wolf?”

“Well, now that you mention it, Minnie, yes, I would like to say a few things that could be considered a rant.”

“You know this is the busy season, right, Wolf?  And you know I am exhausted from all these wild and wooly goings on.  I think we have been through this for the last, what?  11 years?”

“Yeah, Minnie.  11 years going on 50… or 100.  It doesn’t seem to lighten up, does it?  September, October and November:  The wildest 3 months of our partnership.  And I must say, I don’t know how we do it.”

“But somehow we manage.”

“Yeah.  We rarely miss a beat.  We dance to a different drummer.  We communicate in our own way, a call here, an email there, everywhere an oink oink.”

“How many more years are we going to hold on? To do the impossible? To be faced every day with multiple challenges, and find a way to get through them?”

“Let’s face it Minnie, it’s all about our history, our heritage, and our ability to find solutions, together.  You trust me and I trust you. You have my back and I have yours.  You are my customer and I am your supplier.  Or am I your customer?  I get mixed up when I start to think about stuff  like that.  I prefer to think about how we work together to accomplish our goals. And guess what?  Even when we are in the peak of our season, we always find a common ground, and a solution to just about any situation.”

“Yeah ok. So what’s your rant?”

“Can’t you get your new boss, Ms. Tami and your director, Ben Clooney, to meet us at the end of this enrollment season?  You know where.  I have a insatiable urge for perogies.”

“Oh yeah?  Perogies?  And that is your rant?”

“Wait.  Can we invite Mike and Heather and Anna  to join us?  And if none of them can make it, let’s you and I meet at Cracker Barrel and indulge in dumplings.  For you, the chicken.  For me, the apples.”

“What about white birch beer?”

“Hey, Minnie.  When we retire, can we make it our goal to visit every Cracker Barrel in the USA?  And eat ourselves into oblivion?”

“Yeah, ok. But not until after Thanksgiving.  Ok?  We have another month to go.”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah.  Picky, picky, picky.  Such a party pooper, you are.  But I must admit, that you drive me wild, you drive me crazy, and I can’t help myself.”

“Get in early tomorrow, Wolf.  We are on a mission. Together, we can make it happen.”

“Doggone it.  I was just going to pop another beer. Poppy top, again.  Wait. My neighbors horses got loose.  They are parched, standing in my yard, at my door.  I sing, in my best Willie Nelson voice, Whiskey for my men, beer for my horses.”

“Get the hell to bed Wolf.”

“Hey, Minnie:  Up yours.  hahahahahaha.”





An interview with a smoking hot butt.

Welcome to the Quit Smoking Class.

Our speaker today, is Chicken Buttafucco, one of our country’s oldest living Americans, who smoked her ass off for most of her life.

“Ms Buttafucco?  May I call you Chicken?”


“Ok, Ms Buttafucco.  Can you tell us how long you have been a non smoker?”

“It doesn’t matter. So what if I quit 10 minutes ago?  Or 10 days ago?  Or 10 months or years ago?  Who the hell really cares?”

“But you must feel so much better, now, right?”

“Hell no.  I feel worse. I used to go out 3 times a day, on breaks, to see my friends, the outlaws, who smoke. A rare breed.  A creative, loving, crazy, breed.  We shared our secrets, our desires, but mostly, our bonds, in the heat of July and in the frigid temps of January.  We huddled together, huffing and puffing and telling stories that would knock your socks off.”

“But smoking is a bad habit.  You must feel you have more energy, more pizazz and all that jazz.”

“Nope.  I feel just as good or as bad as I always have.  But more importantly, I miss my smoke fests, 3 times a day.”

“Are you considering taking up the habit, once again?”

“Actually, I am considering moving to Canada.”

“Oh?  Is Canada big on non smoking?”

“Yeah, something like that.  I plan to move in the near future, and change my name to Mary Jane Buttafucco.”

“May I ask what it is that you miss about smoking?”

“No.  If you have never smoked, you would never understand.  It’s  a Buttafucco kind of thing.”

“Well, so, uhmmm, may I ask just one more question?”

“Go ahead, Buster.”

“Why are you calling me Buster?”

“Who cares what I call you?  And who cares if you smoke or you don’t smoke?  And who cares if I move to Canada?  But more importantly, Buster:  You got a light?”



Beware the invisible fence and other high tech gadgets


So I go to the Dr.

She says:  What in the world is going on with your blood pressure?

She takes it 3 times.

Prescribes heavy duty meds.

Now I am on the 2nd week.

My BP is really alarmingly low.

Is that a word? Alarmingly?

Well, my bp is so low now, that I am forced to drink doubles to get it up there.

I have to ask everyone I meet to slap the W#5W#%#% out of me, to heighten my senses.

I go to hockey games and wrestling matches, just for the horror of it all.

I fall asleep when I am looking for a file in the bottom drawer of the filing cabinet.

I sky dive in my undies, in the midnight hour.

I become a NY Giants fan and try to kill myself.

I volunteer to work with the Beav and Oscar,  knowing they will kick my ass and enjoy it.

I venture into the front room where E rules the roost.

I sneak past her to see Chewy and Oz, only to get fried by the invisible fence she has set up outside their cubes.

I try to walk in the warehouse in those yellow lines, and  find myself singing, “Follow the yellow brick road”, while getting attacked by flying monkeys and other creatures from the “island.”

At last, at 5pm, I can walk out to the blue beast, hop in and say:  “Home, James.”  Too bad the beast only knows the road to San Jose and to 2 pubs in New Smithville.  He drops me off, and drives around Berks county looking for Babe and the Blue Ox.

You know what?  The next car I am going to get will not be recalled for continuing to drive when turned off. And it will have a key.  Unless of course, it can pick me up in 90 minutes, from one of those New Smithville Pubs and drop me off at home:  as a kinder, gentler, more idiotic chicken butt, with her bp holding steady.

One final note.

I am throwing out my bp machine.

I used to enjoy my life until I got one of those things.

The best way to measure your bp is the simplest!

Laugh, love, enjoy and have a few laughs!

And above all, remember to wear clean undies.




Just get in and drive.

So I overslept a little.

So what?

All I had to do was drive the buggy to the dealership.


So my appointment was at 730am.

It snowed.

And was frosty.

What the heck?

The windshield didn’t want to cooperate.

10 minutes.


5 minutes to drive 10 miles.

When I got there, guess what?

The rental car was not ready.

I waited another 10 minutes until the windshield of the little silver bullet was ready to roll.

Oh geez, I need a coffee.

Stopped at Dunkin.

Hey what the hell?  Where is the key?

This car stops without a key.

Ordered a coffee, and a bagel.

Oh how wonderful life is.

Here I am, ready to roll.

Uhmmmm, wait.

Where is the key?

How does one start a car without a key?

Oh yeah. Push the button.

Put the car in drive.

Geez, the car is drifting backwards.

Ok. Start again.

And again.

I see the battery light.

What the hell.

I am stranded, at DD, in a car without a key.

I look around.

Shoot! There is a liquor store a few steps away, and a grocery store, and a restaurant, along with an emergency walk in place.  Hell!  Who cares if I ever get this @@$@%@%% keyless car to start.

Along comes a bus.

A school bus.

Husband and wife, I presume.

She goes into DD to get coffee, and I saunter up to the hubby.

Do you know anything about these keyless cars?

Whose car is it, he says?  (thinking I might have stolen it.)

Well, he didn’t.

And I was still stuck, until Mrs Bus Driver walks out of DD and says: Close the door. It’s the door that won’t let it start.  Wrong.

The 3 of us drink our coffee and have a lovely time, until Mrs. B Driver says,” Hey!  Wait.  My daughter has a keyless car and she had to step on the break, before she pushes that button.”

Doggone it.  She was right.

Our lovely three some  was rudely interrupted by this ridiculous keyless car reving up like a deuce in the night, blinded by the light.

I am home now.

The keyless beast has been returned to its natural habitat.

I only hope that tomorrow that  the beast brings more people together, at DD or wherever, when technology runs rampant, and refuses to cooperate until we all need one another…. and to indulge in friendship and  donuts, of course.