Thursday, April 28, 2016

Women's Card

Maybe it's beyond my comprehension to understand the concept of the "Women's Card" as used in this political climate. You see, games of cards have always been contests between men, as shown explicitly by cowboy movies in their heydays. Mavericks have existed since time began and many deftly used the slight of hand in dealing cards at games of chance.

Mr. Trump charged Mrs. Clinton of using the "Women's Card" as the only asset she has in her arsenal to challenge him. Donald used "Women's Card" in a very derogatory way, kind of like, disparaging the roll of women in the history of the World.

To my knowledge, there has never been a male or female born that hadn't come out of a women's body. Not, from time immortal, has one human developed without beginning life in the nurturing fluids found in a female's uterus.

This, my friends, is quite a card to play; yes, call it the ultimate "trump" card in the game called life. Donald can denigrate women all he wants too, but females in The United States are beginning to undo the stereotypes tying them down far too long.

Not only in life bearing are women better - the only choice - females exhibit characteristics : of understanding complex problems, of realizing compromise when advantageous, of balancing budgets in stressful times, and, among many more, of having a sense for honesty.

All you women out there, please remember, by sheer numbers you are  the the majority of our national electorate and, if you exercise your vote, you can change the way men appreciate you. Look at the mess that men have allowed our World to corrode into.

Ronald C. Downie

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Last Supper

Right here on Facebook I learned of a way to offer the Last Supper to some unwanted guests. You know the kind who arrive without a phone call and barge right in impervious to your thoughts. Indignant as it seems, these guests can care less of what you think and, upon arrival, they don't make any inclination they'll leave in a timely manner.

I guess because they're unaccompanied by uncles, "ants" of all sizes come as these unwanted guests. Tinny, tiny ones are the worst but, I guess, the big buggers are the worst offenders at doing physical  harm. They arrive at our house early to mid-spring by showing up in the kitchen and in an adjoining bathroom which shares a common wall. Each year they arrive, we battle them, they finally disappear, I suppose, to their ancestral home outside in the environment.

This year, after reading about ant control on Facebook, we've seem to have interrupted the ants life style a little earlier. Maybe, by way of how ants interact between each other when they meet. We're told, ants upon greeting each other exchange food buy way of something like a kiss transferring tiny bits of food each time. This process continues right up the line until finally getting to the Queen who remains relatively stationary in the ant hill colony producing fertile eggs in voluminous quantities.

Control what's in the food ants eat and you have a chance to control ant population. Dissolve 6 parts of granular sugar in a cup of warm water, to this add 6 parts (an equal amount) of boric acid, to this add a small amount of honey and mix until all dissolved and suspended in the solution. Place solution in a spray bottle and spray solution in inconspicuous places preferably in trails frequently traveled by the critters. In a few days the active ants will have transferred this food laced with ant poison, the boric acid, back to the colony killing the Queen and interrupting the life style of the ant hill. Ants are prolific so new Queens are born, therefore I believe, this is a method of control not a complete eradication of the colonies because new colonies are forming as others collapse. Kissing their way to the top, ants who ingest the boric acid, do die, also.

Ronald C. Downie

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Why, Primary Elections

Homebound, I voted by absentee ballot these last election cycles. But, this time, I spent more time trying to understand what I was asked to do when filling out my choices. Seems, the greatest number of people on the ballot, who were strangers to me, were those running for delegates to the political party convention this summer.

Aside from our 6th district representative in congress, Ryan Costello, I really didn't know anything about any of the others listed that I was asked to pick three from. Through the news, awash in all mediums of public interaction, these delegates would be choosing the next presidential nominee, not me, by my vote for my presidential preference.

Why have a meaningless public primary ?

It seems reasonable that more investigative reporting should be done on those people we're asked to vote for to attend and participate in conventions. With the demise of local news organizations all over the country, who the heck will do the investigating ? Oops, or we'll uncover another instance of our countrymen eating our own seed corn.

The fact seemingly is : cigar smoking back room politicos never died but, like beetles, burry underground for awhile and only come out when food picking becomes easy. Herding these party zealots to do the old party bull's wanting is their purpose in being, their duty for the party bosses. It is best for them to be anonymous ! Without thought they carry the political baggage under the radar in a way it has always  been done. Don't allow stupid voters mess up a system that has lasted so long and has done what bosses wanted done is their clarion call.

Again, why do we in America have meaningless primary elections ?

Ronald C. Downie

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Band of Brothers Asks for Help

Lasting over 70 years our "Band of Brothers" is being challenged as I write this. Linwood Bieler, the youngster of our brothers, is in need of prayer to help pull him through his latest hospital stay. Lin fell last week, hit his head on a table, and needed hospitalization at Pottstown. He also needed additional treatment on his damaged eye which was provided for at Wills Eye. Linwood was released from Pottstown and was sent to Manatawny Manor for rehab but his fight with pneumonia returned with fervor and he is back at Pottstown. Since Lin is outfitted with a pacemaker and he takes a full compliment of heart medicine, his medical situation is quite different from many patients.

Linwood, Jack Bechtel, and myself are the active living members left in our band. Gone is Jack's brother Bill and, way back, we considered Bruce Rogers of Grandview Speedway as an early member. We understand Bruce may have been hospitalized in Florida this winter. If he was, we hope he's well now.

We, "The Band of Brothers", a rag tag bunch, due to our age are like the walking wounded, and I use the word walking with my tongue in my cheek since I haven't moved without a walker for many years. Lin quite recently began using a walker too. Jack, our emotional mouthpiece, lost much of his voice to throat cancer some time ago but, though hoarse, remains effervescent as ever. Please, give some positive thoughts to our brother Linwood Bieler. Thank you !

Ronald C. Downie

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Missing in Action

He's missing in action, did he go over the hill, call the cops "missing person", where did he go ?

Look as I must, the game must go on, in spite of a missing man. You see, I watch Phillies's games on TV and one of the main persons I look for each game is the guy in the stands sitting just behind home plate working the pitched ball speed gun. All games, all innings he was there.

Low and behold this year he's gone. Where ? The speed of each pitch  is still indicated on the screen but by who, how ? I haven't heard any
announcer talk of the change.

Think if the Phill's, wanting to keep up with the present age, rather than acquiring name players, may have decided to go to robots instead of bodies. Not needing healthcare, nor vacations, nor overtime robots do the job without negotiations with management. Just a routine greasing and oiling is all a robot needs. Eventually robots may take the field instead of young men but, until then, I'll watch the games on TV still looking for where the speed of a pitch is being recorded.

Ronald C. Downie

Friday, April 15, 2016

Ravages of Cold

Much praise must be given to local orchard men who battled against cold killing low temperatures these last few weeks and, we all hope, they won the battle. Killing cold is stealth like, coming in, in the darkness of early morning on breezes hardly discernible to all of us still sleeping in our beds. Orchard men don't sleep if trouble peeks up its ugly head.

I write today to make you aware of something which may happen to you, or rather, to your trees and plants due to these recent cold spells.    I want you to be aware of a problem that may arise from our recent cold but does not manifest itself until a later date maybe a month or more out. Leaves by that time will have unfolded to full size but some may be discolored by looking dead brown on some outer portion of the leaf. The stem portion of the leaf will remain its normal green but some portion of the leaf could look dead brown. Most likely nothing is attacking your tree or plant, no bug is doing this, no spraying can help, your tree or plant will live thru this abnormality.

What happened was : freezing temperatures occurred just as leaf buds were swelling and the outer tender tissued leaves got frosted and, now when fully formed, show up as dead tissue, usually a quarter to half a leaf will have turned brown. I haven't seen this affect occurring lately around here, in fact, it has been many years since orchard men needed smudge pots or salamanders to ward off freezing temperatures, at least, to my knowledge.

Ronald C. Downie

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Facebook Memories

Ever since "Memories" appeared on Facebook I've become lax at posting anything current which I've just written. I realize most people won't read what I write about since it's written by an old geezer and not accompanied by photographs or reposts of someone famous. I doubt, in the big picture of life, if this matters, although, it matters to me. Rarely do I get to talk to people who can digest my thoughts in some meaningful way and question me about them, the true sense of what's called, "social discourse".

Don't get me wrong, I see the benefits in Facebook's interest of reposting pieces written years ago because they contain some nuggets of wisdom no matter when I wrote them. Gaining "Wisdom", in the grand scheme of things, is still the ultimate goal of Man. Writing about this effort has always been my driving force, even though, not all of us thinks the same way.

Memories seems all I have to relate to, at my age and infirmities, since neither reality will ever be reversed and no one knows what really happens beyond death. My living hope has always been for one of my offspring to adopt my writings and after studying them see if any have worth in printing them. Better yet, may someone of my progeny take up writing in their own style and may their's put mine to shame and may mine rest also with my memories and me into eternity.

Ronald C. Downie

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Stephen Trevor Kurtz
Honoring birth with verse--

"The Hills are Alive with the Sound of Music"

Listen for the shine, bright Sun emerges
Round, as slithering light green leaves unfold.

Can you hear trumpets of heaven blair forth
In cadence to feet shoed in hobnail boots ?

String ensembles reach out, seeking quiet,
In its quest to subdue the din of day.

But it's you, "the Music Man", who seeks cords
As dynamic as a stream murmuring

Over rocks, into pools, and down high falls,
From drip to rush, each in its own music.

Nature draws from its symphonic stirrings
That water, in all its wonder, creates.

A slow rain patters down rumbling lightly.
It provide background music to all sounds.

Sound needs not to be captured but coddled :
 Of five senses, coming from the Devine,

It allows Man to communicate, to
Enthrall, to draw from Heaven, Earthen Songs.

Your Birthday needs an infusion of songs
To commemorate this day in music.

Happy Birthday, Stephen Trevor,
Love, Nanny&PopPop

Friday, April 1, 2016

Occupy Spring

I'm down on the lowest rung of the 99 step ladder realizing there's no climbing up for me anymore. Advancing age keeps most oldsters like me very close to the ground; although, if I was a 1%R my investment income would rise year after year.

I'm confused in understanding the makeup of these 1%R's. How many of them are truly working women ? These super-duper rich seem only to be populated by men often shown as the deep pocketed financiers of political elections. Some 1%R's, like Mitt Romney, appear at rallies with their spouses but did his wife or wives of the other super rich create the vast wealth their families now enjoy ? I would suggest the 1%R's are really an old boy's club reminiscent of medieval times when men ruled this World with an iron fist.

Neither do I understand the gender makeup of the 99%R's. I believe women comprise about 53% of the citizens of the USA, a substantial majority. Do females makeup over 50% of the members of the Occupy movement ? If not, why not ? The tide of change seem to be flowing against the struggle of women to finally get beyond the concept of submission. An alliance with the 99%R's would seem natural since both seem to be seeking equality from the powers which govern us. 

After all these long years I should know quite well that simple logic does not carry the day. The struggle for equality, in all its forms, has been going on for millennia. It's like trying to go up a grassy slope slippery from a morning rain ; two steps up, one back, a fatiguing exercise to say the least. Many begin the journey but only a few will finish.

If women allow the tide to carry them backward they may not recover in a lifetime. The battle lines have been drawn by men legislators who historically believe they know best how women should be kept in line. By Devine Right men are superior is a strong message that women must debunk. 

Women hold a numerical majority in America and they need to join with the minorities : the persons of color, the immigrants, the poor, the old, and the in-firmed so between these groups they gain a unified voice, played out with the ballot box, which may well change this World forever.

Ronald C. Downie