Tag Archive | Punta Gorda

Humans, humans, go away…come back after election day.

Sometimes humans make me sick!

 

Does anyone know where I can hide until after the month of November?

 

~~~~~~

 

Technology is wonderful when it works!

The computer an aid and a torturer!

The Geezer spends hours behind the keyboard. Authors do that. I guess that it’s inevitable that a love hate relationship formed between him and his computer. Human’s say familiarity breeds contempt. Were it only that mild. What happened over the Labor Day weekend illustrates the game of frustration in which he and Microsoft are engaged.

The old bird is on the excitable side. Over the past few weeks he’s been developing an idea for a new book. That’s wound him tighter than a cheap watch. He shared his idea with his literary agent and…Walla! Her excitement matched his. After a long, upbeat conversation before the holiday weekend, she requested a synopsis and some supporting work ‘as quickly as possible.’ When the Geezer get’s that type of a request, he reacts like Teddy Roosevelt on San Juan Hill.

CHARGE! The Geezer took the preliminary information he’d created and began hanging flesh on the bones. He dove into research immediately. His desk was awash in open books, scribbled notes, downloaded printed sheets, and the all-ways-present empty coffee cups. And…his problems began right with it. His original title for the book didn’t work for several reasons. Okay, just change it. There is that little matter of file names. Awww, the acorn that the mighty oak grew from.

It revolved around those pesky title changes and the cloud. Microsoft, in all its monopolistic wisdom, tries to force its software slaves to use the cloud. The cloud, or the ‘shroud’ as the Geezer calls it, gobbled up some files that he was trying to keep off of it. Some went here…some went there…some went everywhere! Unfortunately, he did not become aware of that until he was almost finished. Fuming, fussing, and cussing he straightened the mess out. The Geezer sent the synopsis, etc. to the fair lady agent for her royal perusal. He thought.

She acknowledged receipt. The time clock was punched and the Geezer’s office chair developed pins and needles. Thursday at five! Book synopsis D-Day. Awaiting feedback on his baby in the womb made Tuesday long, Wednesday unending, and Thursday excruciating.

ZOOM! The moment of truth. The Geezer’s anticipation bubbled. The conversation hadn’t progressed far when the Geezer got that feeling in the pit of his stomach…something was very wrong. One party was speaking about the sky, the other ant hills. After wasting a goodly amount of time the Geezer realized the files he sent weren’t the ones he wanted her to get!

After the call there was much gnarling of teeth. The Geezer had the fervent desire to throw the computer in the canal behind our house. But if the Geezer is anything, he’s practical. He selected a piece of paper, printed in large letters, ‘COMPUTER,’ folded into the form of a paper airplane, and sent it into the murky waters. Sigh! Humans!

Brandi Progress report: She’s growing! Fast!

Brandi is getting large! Hopefully the baby teeth will go soon and everything in the house and me won’t be a chew toy!

If you’re interested in taking in one of the Geezer’s presentation, check out his website at http://www.dlhavlin.com and look under calendar of events. (A link is to the right on this page) Thinks are beginning to reopen and he is also doing many things virtually. Sit at home and see “Here Come The Generals” (one of many) through Master the Possibilities continuing education program.

~~~~~~

Hi! I’m Brandi…

HI! I’m Brandi. I’m Sandy’s understudy. I hope to carry on with her tradition – – – a dog’s eye view of humans.

There comes a time in a dog’s life where she wants to kick back a little, smell the roast beef, and enjoy the next part of life. That time has come for me. Sooooooooooo, let me introduce you to someone who will be writing some of my information pieces on you humans. I give you Brandi! She’s a Golden Retriever just like me! In living color!

I believe a lot of life is the angle you view it from!

Hello! I’m young…I’m energetic…I love life…and I love all you crazy, mixed-up, humans. I’ll be sharing the keyboard with Sandy and the Geezer. Some at first, then more, and more, and more. About me! I’m still getting to learn about myself. I have a different view of things, I do some things well…Run around like crazy, wag my tail so hard my whole rear shakes, eat non-stop, and play hide and seek with Missy…She’s something called a cat. I’m still learning lots. My grammar is spotty, my bark is shrill and high pitched, and I don’t do potty well. I do LOVE to chew!

Above all else I love to chew!

One thing the Geezer and Sandy agree on is that I love people and people love me. Oh…another is I’m a cutie. Standby. I’m ready to start my writing career.

I know I’ll love all of you! I hope all of you will love me!

 

Sandy here! Isn’t she lovable…

~~~~~~~

 

 

I just don’t understand humans…

I wonder if I’ll ever understand humans!

 

The more I see of humans, the more I wonder about them being the dominant species on earth.

An example comes to my canine mind.

Have you thought about the way the species has approached the Covid-19 virus? It seems the most important thing to accomplish is to find something or someone to blame. Solutions are of secondary importance. Who is to blame! Really, that should be, ‘Who can we blame!’ The lists to choose from are long, and most are politically inspired. Let’s see…Republicans…Democrats…the Chinese…the Americans…eating wildlife…a lab…immigration…the Wall…the WHO…the CDC…Fox News…CNN…Bob Hope…Mickey Mouse. Most of the headlines are centered on things that don’t help solve the problem. If you watch that institution that laughingly calls itself the news media, you might get a thirty-second update on progress on the vaccine. Of course, that’s after hours of political wrangling over masks or no masks, gatherings are taboo or race riots are fine, open up or stay closed, three feet or six feet, inside or outside, etc.

This?

or this?

Have you seen the first call for volunteers to test vaccines on national news? No, no, no, that would be constructive. How about a detailed report on how many efforts are being made to find the ‘cure?’ What the detailed progress is? Naaaa! That would be informative. How about pushing the use of ultra-violet light to kill as much of the virus as possible in crowded, high-risk areas? Restrooms… reception areas… public transportation? Hell no, that’s common sense, it isn’t supported by a computer model that was produced by a college. You know like the one that predicted we’d have 2,500,000 people die of the corona virus…of course reality tells us it was a little off. Only about 2,400,000 minus a few. That would offend the academic and medical elites who have all eggs in the vaccine basket. 

Though the stupidity of the species is elevating to new heights it isn’t a recent phenomenon. Slavery in Egypt and Africa, the Spanish Inquisition, Slavery in the US, a couple of World Wars, they are species that does not learn. Nero fiddled while Rome burned. What are you folks doing? Humans, YUK!

 

~~~~~~~

 

 

This year’s Fourth of July is a day for reflection…

Happy 4th of July, Everyone!

Hello fellow Americans! Let me join everyone of you in wishing our wonderful country happy birthday! I’m proud of the place we live. I want to work for its betterment. I want true equality for all people (and canines) and the peace and tranquility that will eventually come with it.

Let’s reflect on how we should get there.

Is using racial hatred as a political tool to SEIZE power a good thing? I’d say not. How about burning down, looting, and beating up anyone who dares think differently than you as a way to pull us together. I don’t think so. Question – Does seeing the type folks doing the trashing of their neighbors hard won homes and businesses make you enthusiastic about becoming best buddies.

How about engaging in a pleasant conversation with someone different from you? Gosh, do you think if we got past the hate most of our media stokes to an inferno we might find we may have more in common than we think? Inviting a family to share dinner will do more to foster brotherhood than tearing down every statue, plaque, and monument in the country.

Let’s see, oh yes, defunding or eliminating the police. Why we can do something better! Let’s eliminate congress, state and local government. They make laws we obviously don’t need. There won’t be an agency to enforce them – just suggest we behave. Good luck with that.

Speaking of defunding, what a bundle of possibilities that opens! A great example! What about defunding colleges and universities? They no longer are places where all ideas are welcomed. No wonder they discourage studying history. The parallels to late 1930s Germany and the USSR are frightening and the Molotov Cocktail throwers being produced in them are scary reminders. (NYU & Harvard?)

It gets down to choices. Which way do you New Yorkers want to see your city?

Macy’s as we love it!

Macy’s converted by ‘the summer of love’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Which would you Seattle residents prefer as an image?

A place of violence, hate, where the rule of the jungle prevails

A beautiful, intellectual place to enjoy life…or

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you want? This is the year we will have to make a decision. Right now neither is a great choice. It’s a least worst one! Let’s hope we will celebrate another USA Fourth of July celebration in 2021. —- Not the divided States of America, recovering from from a thirty million casualty civil war. —- Not the first USSA celebration of the United Soviet States of America with totalitarian leaders setting off the fireworks. —- Not the Pu Fung American Province of the Peoples Republic of China. Do we really want any of that?

 

~~~~~~

 

It started with…I got to get out of here!

Someplace away, serene, peaceful and all alone

It all started with a shared scream, “I got to get out of here!” COVID-19 has turned the world’s human population into the same class of sheltering animals as earthworms and moles. The Chinese Crud, the more accurate, but less politically correct title for the plague afflicting the world, keeps humans playing hide-and-seek. The Geezer and Mrs. G had enough of the same four walls. In unison, they announced their attentions. The question was where to go and be safe. My keen canine intellect knew just the place! Amity cabin. It’s the perfect place to travel to and be more isolated than at home. I’ll explain.

The little cabin in the Mississippi woods. It is located on a 40 acre lake in the middle of 400 acres with only the owners home to share it.

The Geezer loves to fish. He has tarpon and snook in the canal behind our Florida home. But, he loves to catch bluegills, crappies, and bass just as much. We visited this fishing and hunting paradise a couple of years ago when we made a pilgrimage to Mrs. G’s birthplace in Laurel. That’s in Jones County Mississippi, the site of the recent Mathew McConaughey movie, “The Free State of Jones.” The whole family fell in love with Amity, but it was I that remembered its beauty and haunting serenity. Mark one up for canine superiority. We drove straight through, 12 hours, to minimize exposure to the virus. Below are some of the pictures of our weeks stay.

What we came for: A bunch of 8 inch bluegill for a tasty supper. They’re loads of fun when caught on a light flyrod and a rubber spider. Caught tons of these we returned to Lake Fredrick.

 

Follow tracks like these…

Tracks like these…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The unspoiled woods that cover the property are a wildlife lover’s nirvana. We saw many deer, turkeys, pond birds, song birds, etc. Quail? Mrs. G whistled up Bob White and I thought we were in an outtake from Hitchcock’s “The Birds.” The track below was made by a big bruiser!

Big ol’ Buck tracks

Mrs. G loves all the flowers. Her particular favorite are the Magnolia blossoms that adorn the numerous waxy olive leaved trees. The one below was the size of a bucket.

OH, MAGNOLIA!

When all is said and done, that’s 800 miles and three woof’s later, there’s no place like home.

Me, back in Florida…with all my things!

 

The Geezer will be out and about in a safe manner this weekend. He’ll be speaking at the Authors for Authors, Writers Conference in Melbourne, Florida this Saturday. Registration is open at 8 AM, at the Hilton Rialto. Hope to see you there…from behind my mask.

 

~~~~~~~

 

 

Escaping the Chinese Crud – Getting away from it all…

Hiding from the Corona Crud – Our “stay in the car” trip

After a while, you just have to get out. That’s what we did! A week ago the Geezer, Mrs. G, and me crawled into the car and headed out. We went to the site of the Geezer’s latest book, “The Grave with Greener Grass.” It certainly put us in a position to observe social distancing and isolation. Kenansville and Lake Marian are in south-central Florida. They are in an area that has escaped the growth much of the state sees. In other words, it hasn’t been spoiled…yet. Geezer said he hadn’t visited the area he used to fish, for thirty years. He was ecstatic observing how little it had changed! As he remarked, “It is wonderful to see there are still places God and nature created that man hasn’t screwed (My word, not his) up.”

The trip was not without its problems. Mrs. G and the Geezer aren’t short-sighted. They realized the need to minimize potty stops. Food and drink intake was severely limited before and during the eight hour trip. Nature doesn’t relent. When you got to go, you got to go. Face masks, gloves, aerosols, none of them leave you with complete peace of mind at the gas station, etc. that becomes a pee stop. Finding open businesses, ones that looked less likely to be infected, and that had facilities available for use, just weren’t plentiful.

Lake Marian – Paradise fishing resort, one very few access points to the lake

Lake Marion’s shoreline is 95% the way nature made it. Gators, snakes, turtles, frogs, otters, herons, cranes, ducks, and other wildlife are the only over population to which its waters are subjected. It is “old school.” Oh yes, there are plenty of bass, specs, and bream swimming around. You can truly “isolate” here.

The Paradise Inn – Lake Marian’s, Ritz Carlton

We visited what would equate to the setting of the main character’s ranch gate in “The Grave with Greener Grass.” The Geezer’s (DL Havlin) novel is the first in a planned six book series featuring redneck light hero, Sly Harrell. A former operative for the DOJ and a defense firm employee where he did industrial espionage, Sly owns the ranch and runs a business the specializes in “finding things.” (Hence “The Finder” series) This is what its entrance looked like.

The ranch gate – the prototype for Sly Harrells property

The trip went well, and my humans began feeling adventurous. They decided to take the unmitigated risk of eating at an actual restaurant! (TIC) They stopped in the wonderful little town of Frostproof. The old main street is a photographer’s delight…it is like stepping through a time portal into the 1930’s. Located on “the scenic highway” in that quaint little city is the Egg Works, a place the Geezer loves to eat lunches and breakfasts. It was opened…he couldn’t resist the stop…and Mrs. G had to go. Try the Philly Cheese Steak! It is outstanding.

One of the Geezer’s favorite places for breakfast or lunch!

“After the ball is over” – The Egg Works after hours…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Grave with Greener Grass” is hot off the Geezer’s keyboard and was just turned over to his literary agent in the last two weeks. It’s a mystery/suspense novel with a lot to please reader’s who like to think. I’ll let you all know who the publisher will be and when it will be available. That is as soon as I know!     WOOF!  WOOF!

 

~~~~~~

 

 

 

How Reading Makes Me A Better Bear!

Reading makes me a better bear.

 

Guest post: The Geezer is doing this post for me – Woof, woof!

About four years ago, I’d had enough! Enough of what, you say? Enough of seeing young ‘uns with no interest in reading. I speak to libraries, civic groups, museums, continuing learning groups, and at book stores. After one of my presentations, there are always a few questions posed by audience members and they are often accompanied by young children. My standard question to ‘our future’ is “What is the latest book you’ve read?” The young ones most frequent reaction to the query is to look at me like I’m a Martian.

I’m not a children’s writer. But, if you’re going to criticize, you to be willing to help solve the problem, not add to it. (If any of you know a media person, please quote the last sentence to them.) I wrote “Why Reading Makes Me A Better Bear” for that reason. Its intent is to stimulate young children’s interest in reading. I print them, sell a few at appearances to offset my costs, and give them to schools, libraries, and organizations promoting children’s literacy. So far we’ve given over a 1,000 away. A two page guide at the rear of the book is a guide for adults to work with a young reader to get the most out of the book. (Prepared with the HELP of PhD. in education process.)

Since a lot of us are confined to wherever we call home, I thought this would be a good time to share…….and to hope you’ll share with your friends and family.

  1. Click on the link below  2) Power Point will ask if it can come up on your screen – answer yes  3) At top click on slide show  4) Select from the beginning.

Narated.Why.Reading Makes Me A Better Bear

One page from the book.

Feedback from libraries, etc. has been extremely favorable. If you are a teacher, librarian, or other adult who works with children and want a free copy of the book, go to my web page  http://www.dlhavlin.coom  then click the contact tab and request we ship you one. We’ll ask you for shipping cost ONLY.

 

~~~~~~~

 

 

Cabin Fever!! TV makes it worse.

As close as I’m getting to the out side, A ride in the car

 

I don’t know about you, but I think life inside walls stinks!  My humans are doing the social distancing thing…religiously.

Before the Chinese Crud, taking a bathroom break was not a big deal. I hunt up the most convenient human, (usually Mrs. G – the Geezer is usually chained to the computer), give them a pathetic look, head for the door, wham…open Sesame…we go out for my relief. Not now. Before they exit they get the binoculars, check the road in both directions, wind direction, fan the air to chase away any clouds of virus laden droplets coughed or sneezed by the isolated giant who happened to stomp over the neighborhood. I expect them to fly a barge balloon over the house to discourage low flying aircraft. 

The Geezer and Mrs. G. stay entombed in the house, venturing out only to get groceries. My outdoor time is limited to potty breaks and riding shotgun in the car on my human’s grocery excursions.

Being relegated to life inside the walls means a steady diet of manure servings from the tube. TV is bad enough, but having to endure the steady parade of politicians, bureaucrats, and medical “experts” who are so self-impressed they need lead weights to keep their helium filled big heads from caring them up to the top of the stratosphere, is unbearable. My humans agree on that.

The Geezer has a good idea for raising money to pay for some of the costs. His idea is simple and he calls them potty pals. The picture of the politician you love to hate is placed on a plastic sheet with a ring around it. The ring is the same shape and size as a standard toilet. A star-burst is cut in the center. Place the potty pal in the pooper and shazaammmm…It will make a trip to the toilet more enjoyable. There’s no end to the potential targets. The Geezer’s favorite potty pal would be WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. He calls him Sheisskopf for short.

Watching the endless parade of politicians vomit the same manure hour after hour on podiums is nauseating. The interesting thing is many simple inexpensive things could be done to attack the virus. It seems that anything that does not genuflect to the elitist academic egg heads is branded chafe before its reviewed.

The only redeeming portion of the whole TV spectacle is the recognition the on the front medical personnel are so rightfully receiving. They deserve all the praise they’re getting plus!

Let’s hope this ends soon. If the virus doesn’t wipe out society, TV and the elitist will.

 

WOOF  WOOF

 

Aunt Gilda’s Christmas Gift

The Geezer and I wish you all a very “Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!”

It’s time for my annual Christmas and Holiday greeting to all my friends…four and two legged. The Geezer has written a new one that I’m sure you’ll enjoy!

 

Aunt Gilda’s Christmas Gift

 

If I could relive one day of my life…at one place…whenever I wished, it would be at my Aunt Gilda’s home on Christmas morning 1968. I learned something that morning; one of the most important bits of wisdom I’d ever receive.

The year 1968 had not been a good one for our family. My older brother went to Vietnam and died there, early in the year. Resulting stress took its toll on our whole family. My sisters, both older, were very close to Eddie. The loss nearly destroyed them both. Their wrath focused on my parents whom they believed allowed Eddie to enlist. My father’s health went from vibrant to precarious after a mysterious malady struck him. He would not find the cure in the bottle that caused it. Mother struggled to keep what she possessed in-tact. That was difficult. Both my sisters were in a state of uncontrollable rebellion, her husband a tottering drunk, and I…I had become convinced that love was something I didn’t want. From what I saw, love was simply a transitory, conditional thing that eventually caused pain.

Aunt Gilda was special to me. My mother’s sister, she was several years older than my parents. Gilda wasn’t a stranger to life’s disappointments and tragedies. Her husband died in World War Two. She had no children. She never remarried. After a brief period earning a living as a nightclub performer, she settled into first managing, then owning a small restaurant. It suited her. Despite a fire, hard economic times, and a violent robbery, she persevered and prospered. She was happy sharing life with friends and her two Golden Retrievers.

I was her surrogate child and she was my favorite aunt. So, when things reached a crises in our household that December, I was sent to stay with Aunt Gilda for the holidays. My mother needed fewer problems and I was one that could be removed from her over-stuffed basket. Two weeks before Christmas, my aunt greeted me with a warm smile as I walked out of the airport gate. My twelve-year-old mind only processed the material aspect of my stay. Gilda was a great cook, generous to a fault, and fun to be around. My first evening there, Aunt Gilda discovered that as we sat in front of her huge fireplace.

“I’m sorry you don’t have your parents and sisters here. I know you’ll miss their love.” Gilda shoved a plate of pecan pralines at me.

I greedily grabbed a few of the sweet candies and said, “Thanks, Aunt Gilda. These pralines are a good substitute.”

“Jerry, you don’t mean that! There is never a substitute for the love we share.”

I casually said what I felt, “I don’t know Aunt Gilda. It seems to me that love always has a string on it. If things go bad, it can be jerked away. It’s kind of like the way my sisters play with their cat. They tie a piece of paper on the end of a piece of string. They let the cat chase it until they get tired. That’s the end of it. If things go bad or get boring, love just goes away. Dad says love is just another four letter word.”

My aunt examined my face but said nothing for several seconds. Finally, she said, “I’ll have to think about that for a while.” I was to get her rebuttal Christmas morning.

“Get up, Jerry,” my aunt said as she pried me from the bed much earlier than I expected. Presents! What was I waiting for? I rolled out of bed and took a few steps toward the bedroom door before she stopped me. “Whoa!” She grinned and I noticed a sheet and a huge red bow draped over one of her arms. “I have to wrap you before I give you away,” she said.

“Huh?” I was surprised and confused.

Gilda smiled as she covered me with the sheet, grasping both hands so they would extend uncovered. When she finished, I was encased in a white cloth “package” with the red bow pinned to the sheet. “You’ll make a great present!” Was I really going to be someone’s gift? She said, “Come with me,” and led me to whatever awaited. I could smell the pine as we entered the living room and stood next to the Christmas tree.

I heard strange noises. After a few seconds, I decided they came from my Aunt’s two dogs. She asked, “Are you ready?”

No one answered, so I decided I should. I murmured, “I guess I am.”

“Good…Buster, meet Jerry. He’s your Christmas present.” Simultaneously, I felt something soft, warm, and furry being placed in my hands. And, it was moving around. My fingers circled a small body between four legs.  Aunt Gilda snatched the sheet away. I was staring into the eyes of a golden retriever pup.

Back when I was a puppy ……

Aunt Gilda spoke to the puppy, not me. “What do you think, Buster? Do you want to keep him? He’ll likely be a pain in the ass to train. He has no idea that to love something or someone it has to be unconditional. No strings…no if’s…no anything. He’ll need to learn to take you with him most everywhere he goes, the proper way to scratch behind your ears, and what your favorite treats are. Test him a time or two…leave a few messes for him to clean up. Want to give it a shot?”

Buster whimpered a little, took his eyes off me, stared at Aunt Gilda for a few seconds, then focused on me before issuing a baby bark, indicating he’d accept the challenge.

Aunt Gilda looked at me. “It seems Buster is willing to give it a try. How about you, Jerry?”

I would have the thought the smile on my face would have answered her question, but I enthusiastically answered, “Sure!”

“Hold him to your chest and let him enter your heart.” I did, and Aunt Gilda said words I’ve never forgotten.

“Jerry, when you take someone into your heart and decide to love them, it’s a decision you can’t cancel, though sometimes you may wish you could. That’s the reason you make the decision to love carefully. Buster will provide you with unconditional love if you do the same for him. Love wisely, love unbreakably and you will love happily.”

Merry Christmas Friends

 

~~~~~~~