Thursday, May 25, 2017

Thursday, 5/25

I'm either getting old or I must really, really like cows. I'm certainly hoping it's the latter. If not, I'm in a LOT of trouble.

After I posted yesterday's newspaper picture of cows on a French beach, I received notes from a bunch of people, most of whom agreed that would be an ideal place for me to live. However, several people also pointed out the young woman in the picture, and (jokingly) wondered if she might also be the reason I want to move there.

And, of course, my reaction was “what young woman”?

Then I looked at the picture again. If you don't remember it, just scroll down to yesterday's entry and take a look at it. It's the picture with cows on a beach. And, now that someone pointed it down, also with a young woman standing in front of the cows, a fact to which I, apparently, didn't even pay any attention the first time I saw it.


I'm sure that the first time I saw the picture I noticed the young woman standing there. I mean, if I didn't, there would have to be something seriously wrong with me. What I'm hoping is that I got so excited by the concept of cows on a warm beach that I just didn't even give her a second thought. I'm hoping that's it. I'm hoping that I've not gotten to the point in my life where I don't even pay attention to a young woman like that, because if that were the case...

Well, I don't even wanna think about THAT.

So yes, the cows on the beach would be a perfect reason to move to Corsica. Everything else would just be frosting on the cake. And that's all I'm gonna say about that!



Finally, a picture with neither cows, a beach, or a young woman--

Close. Oh, so close. Just think what a few days of warm weather would do...if we'd just get a few days of warm weather!


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Wednesday, 5/25

I'm moving to Corsica and I'm never coming back.

Those of you who know me even just a little probably know two weird facts about me—I like the beach, and I like cows. I can explain the former because of the zen-like effect a beach has on me; unfortunately, I have absolutely no explanation for the latter, other than the fact that they're really fun to photograph. So even just knowing those two weird facts, after looking at this picture it makes perfect sense why I'd want to move to a French island--

Yup. On the island of Corsica (birthplace of Napoleon, among other things) there is a group of cows that have escaped a nearby farm and have taken up residence on a Mediterranean beach. First of all, let me congratulate the cows on both their escape and their excellent choice of a hiding place. Secondly, anyone know when the ferry leaves the mainland for Corsica? I kinda need to be there as soon as possible.


Actually, I'm sure the cows have been rounded up by now. The news story was several days old when I discovered it yesterday. But can you imagine the joyous rapture that would've caused my head to explode had I been on that (or any beach) at the moment the cows arrived? What would I have been happier about? The beach? The cows? Would my brain have locked up trying to process all the bits of incoming joy?

Someone might have had to hit CTRL-ALT-DEL on my brain, and THAT would've been a lot of fun.

Oh well. I guess I just wasn't lucky enough to be at the right place at the right time. That's life, or, as they'd say on Corsica, c'est la vie. I'm sure I'll be able to survive without experiencing the rapture of cows on a beach. However, should the weather ever get nice, I can guarantee I'll be spending a lot of time at McCarty's Cove or South Beach over the next few months, and should someone be transporting cows through the area, and should that someone want to give those cows a little break to stretch their legs on a local beach...

Well, I'll give you my phone number. You know...just in case.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Tuesday, 5/23

I keep forgetting there's a whole group of people out there who don't realize that I'm a slob.

As I've written in here before, in a perfect world my default wardrobe would be shorts and a T-shirt. It's a wardrobe choice that calms me, a wardrobe choice I think looks best on me, and a wardrobe choice I'm hoping to wear at least once this summer, although these days I'm having my doubts. If I could, I'd wear shorts and a T-shirt every day and be perfectly content.

But, unfortunately, I can't wear shorts and a T-shirt every day. Aside from the practical, weather-related considerations there are also lifestyle & job requirements that force me to dress up on occasion. In fact, if people only know the “TV Jim” part of who I am, they might think that I am, in fact, a snazzy dresser. And something yesterday proved that point.

Despite the fact that I would wear nothing but shorts and a T-shirt given the choice, I do dress up on occasion, even when work doesn't require it. In fact, yesterday was one of those days, when I was wearing a black shirt, black suit coat, and a neon pink tie. (Hey--if I DO dress up, at least it's with a little color!) Anyway, I had to run down the street for something, and a lady walking past caught my eye. She said “hello”, and then wanted to compliment me on how I always “look so nice”. I thanked her, and realizing that she obviously is most familiar with “TV Jim”, decided not to share my secret about how, deep down, I'm really a slob.

You guys know it, but we'll let some people maintain the illusion. After all, it works for Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny, so who am I to argue?

I'm hoping the fact that deep down I'm really a slob wouldn't disappoint the people who think I dress well all the time. I mean, I would hate to shatter the illusion, but that's not just who I am. If I could, I'd wear shorts and a T-shirt when I was doing “High School Bowl” or “Ask the Lawyers”. But unfortunately, I can't. So what you see on TV is not always what you get. Maybe I'll have to start resurrecting that line from an old commercial and start saying something like “I'm not a sharp dresser, but I do play one on TV”.

I just hope people like the lady on the street would accept me for who I really am.

So if anyone's reading this who wasn't in on the secret, I hope you're okay with it. We all have our demons, we all have things we're trying to keep pushed deep down away from the light. Mine is this--

I'm Jim, and I'm a slob at heart.


Monday, May 22, 2017

Monday, 5/22

A few random things to start the week, the first being that this headache can go away any time soon.

I've had a really annoying sinus headache the past few days, and it doesn't seem to show any signs of letting up. It's kind of surprising; when I was younger, I used to get a bad case of hay fever every spring which would invariably be accompanied by an annoying sinus headache. Well, I've found that one of the few things that's good about getting older is that my hay fever seems to have diminished each year.

Except, of course, for this year.

I don't know why it's so bad this year. I don't know if it's the very warm winter followed by the very cold spring we've had, or if it's just all the plants & trees sprouting at once (and as an entirely unrelated side note to daily blog reader Betsy in Reese—the lilacs should be in full bloom when you're up here this weekend!). All I know is that my head is full of gunk, so much gunk that I can almost feel it slosh around when I turn said head.

So I just hope it goes away soon.

Secondly, I don't know if you've seen this yet, but Time magazine has a cute little feature on their website that allows you to see what your name would be if you were born today.

How does it do it? Well, it determines the popularity of your name the year you were born. For instance, the year I was born, “James” was the third most popular name for a baby boy. So it takes where your name ranked in popularity and then extrapolates to 2016, because the Social Security people just released their list of the most popular baby names of the year. So, if I was born last year and still had been given the third most popular name of the year, I would no longer be “Jim”.

Nope. My name would be Mason. You know—like the jar.

Of course, Loraine had a much bigger laugh than did I. The year she was born her name was the 607th most popular girl's name, so if she had been born last year and was still given the girl's name that ranked 607, her name would've been Averi. Yes, with an “i” on the end.

Mason & Averi. Well, I guess we now know our names if we ever need to go undercover or something!

( (aka Mason)

Friday, May 19, 2017

Friday, 5/19

Four years ago today I had an awful lot of fun, at least if you define “fun” as losing a tooth, getting six stitches on my face, and scraping up half of my body.

That's “fun”, right?

Yup; it's hard to believe it's been that long, but four years ago today I had my little (well, “big”, actually) bike accident, when I wasn't looking where I was going, ran the front tire of my bike into the rear tire of Loraine's bike, and watched physics take over. Five seconds later, I was bruised, battered, bloodied, and bewildered, not unlike many people who do stupid things to themselves.

So “yay” for me!

I did, thankfully, heal quite quickly. My tooth was replaced (thanks to Dr. Belpedio, who still rightly admires his handiwork every time I go in for a check-up), the scar left by the stitches is only visible if you know where under my right eye to look, and my fingers, torn to shreds by the pavement and cut up by my wedding ring, are as good as new. In fact, the only (literal) scars that are left are on my left knee, and those were scars I thought I'd carry with me forever. However, they too are fading, so one day the only physical reminder I may have of the accident is my new wedding ring, which replaced the one that tore up my fingers and had to be cut off once said fingers started to swell.

I don't recommend anyone do what I did. I don't recommend that anyone get into a bike accident, and I don't recommend that anyone have to go through what I went though. But in a strange way, having gone through that experience made me realize that I'm surrounded by some pretty amazing people, everyone from Loraine (who helped me right after the accident) to the people at Superior Walk-In Center who patched me up, to my parents who drove us (and our bikes) home to, as I mentioned, Dr. Belpedio, who gave me my new tooth. They all have my thanks, for now and forever.

Until you go through an experience like that, you just don't know how many talented and caring people are around you, both personally and professionally. I mean, I hope that you never have to go through what I went through (and since most of you are much more careful than am I, you probably never will), but if you do, I hope you're able to be surrounded with the same quality of caring individuals as was I. It's not a very fun experience, but it WAS made much more tolerable when you know you're in good hands.

Most years, on the anniversary of my accident, I go out for a bike ride (just to thumb my nose at fate). But because of the cold & the rain in the forecast, and the fact that I still haven't (as I mentioned a few weeks ago) gotten my bike out for the year, I won't do it today, but that's okay. My bike and I are still on great terms. About the only time I even think of the accident is when I'm riding past the place on Marquette's west-side bike path where the accident occurred. There, and only there, I slow down just a little, and make sure that I'm not about to run into anyone else's bike.

After all, I don't want to do it again.

On that note, have yourself a great weekend, and remember—no bike accidents for anyone!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Thursday, 5/18

I'm gonna have to maim you if you ever repeat what I'm about to say, but I really like my bifocals.

I know; it makes no sense to me, either. I complained quite a bit when I was told I needed them a few years ago. After all, bifocals are something “old” people wear, and coming from a family that's quite averse to aging, the bifocals seem almost antithetical. But, as you may recall, I went to the eye doctor yesterday. Because the check-up revealed my eyes have changed a little in the two years since I got my last pair of glasses, I need new lenses. For a few minutes, it looked as if I may have had to give them my current bifocals and use an old pair of glasses to see; specifically, the last glasses I had before I needed bifocals.

And, although I'm REALLY loathe to admit this, I didn't want to give my bifocals up.  Thankfully, I didn't have to.

Until the past few years the only problem with my eyes was that things were blurry far away. I could see just fine looking at things that were close up. But apparently, as mere mortals age, our eyes become less elastic and it's harder to see close up without assistance. It's hard for me to admit, but apparently I'm living proof of that. So the old glasses I may have had to temporarily use correct my vision far away just fine; after all, that part of me has remained constant over the years. But when I try to read something wearing these old glasses, I just can't look down at the bottom of the lenses and clearly see what I'm reading, like I did with my bifocals. Nope. I temporarily have to act like an old person and hold the reading material at half an arm's length; otherwise, it's just a slightly fuzzy blur of text, pictures, and colors.

Using those old glasses, I temporarily become the person I used to (jokingly) mock. Karma, I hope my derriere doesn't hurt your teeth too much.

Actually, reading a book isn't that bad. Like I said, I just need to adjust my arms a little. It's looking at a computer screen that's the problem. Just out of curiosity, I threw the old pair on this morning to see how they would've worked, and it was, shall we say, interesting. I had to lean into every screen I used, just to see what I'm typing or what I'm touching. My laptop's not too bad, because I can move that wherever it works best. It's when I used a desktop computer with a fixed monitor—like at work, when editing something, or right now, when writing this—that I had to hunch over just to clearly see what was popping up on the screen. I did my best, but I would just like to say if there are any spelling errors in today's entry, it's not my fault.

It's the fault of my ding-dang eyes.

Thankfully, I did not have to deal with this problem Thankfully, when the new lenses come in, they can just pop them into the current frames, and I'll be set. Until then, I'll just try not to think about how much of a hypocrite I've become in my old age.

You know, the kind of hypocrite who doesn't want his bifocals taken away.



Speaking of my trip to the eye doctor yesterday, do you remember a couple of months ago when the Ironwood “High School Bowl” team wanted me to run for President? Well, they now have some company!

I especially like the eye-related puns they put on the sign, like “Jim for President 20/20” and “He Has a Great Vision”. Thanks to Donna and the gang at Dr. Kyle's office for making my day yesterday!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Wednesday, 5/17

Because I have an appointment at the eye doctor in a few minutes, I'm gonna have to leave with with something old; in this case, something from 2014.

Something brand-new tomorrow because, as far as I can tell, I don't have an appointment in sight! (Get it...”sight”, because I'm going to the eye doctor today? Okay; never mind...)



(as originally posted May 20, 2014)

That's interesting. I never would've expected the number to be that high.

I came across a statistic a couple of days ago, and I have to admit it surprised me a little bit. The statistic said that 58% of men are okay with a woman who's more athletically inclined than are they. It surprised me for two reasons—one, the male ego, and two, it's nice to know I'm not alone.

I have no problem with a woman (or women) who is more athletic than I. In fact, I've been married to a woman more athletic than I for a quarter of a century now. Loraine's a natural athlete; in fact, any athletic inclination I've shown is because she either convinced me to go try something or showed me how much fun it could be. So like I said, I have no problem with anything like that. Some people have it, some people don't.

And I certainly know that I don't.

The fact that the number was 58% of men was a little shocking, too, because of, like I said, the egos of a certain class of males. I might be wrong about this—I'm certainly wrong about most things these days—but it seems to me like there's a whole class of men out there whose ego or whose competitive nature wouldn't allow them to be in the company of athletic women. I mean, I know that men's attitudes about these sorts of things are (thankfully) evolving; I guess I just didn't realize they were evolving quite that quickly.

Good for the Y chromosomes, I guess!

I have to wonder what the reaction will be when there's a woman athletically inclined enough to join a pro sports team. Will that event be treated the same way as when Jackie Robinson took the field for the first time, with barely concealed hatred? Or will it be more like when the Rams drafted Michael Sam last weekend, and greeted with a collective shrug from most of the population? I'd hope it would be more like the latter; after all, times and feelings are changing, but until it happens, you might never know.

Hopefully, though, some year soon, a much larger percentage of men than 58% won't care if there are women who are more athletic than they are, or who earn more money than they do, or have more power than they do. We're all human beings, after all. We're all in the same boat together. If one person has more of an ability in a certain area than another, should it matter one iota the gender of the person with more ability?

No, it should not. And that's all I'm gonna say about that.

(, who likes athletic women, one in particular.