Wednesday, August 04, 2010




I wheeled an elderly lady in a wheel chair up to the reception counter at one of our local Hospitals this morning, handed the receptionist the ladies health card & awaited instructions as to where to take her.  She made a few entries onto a computer screen, handed me back the health card & said......."you can drop your wife off at the X-ray department first door down the hall on the left, Sir."  Did I mention this was a very elderly lady in the wheel chair!!  And I should also mention the last 5 minutes standing in the washroom staring at myself in the mirror wondering 'what happened' hasn't helped my once youthful ego either!!



I had a few blocks of waiting time between the folks I transported around this morning so all photos in tonight's blog were taken in & around Goderich between wheelchair stops.



Ever notice how people say things to you without ever thinking about what they are saying.  And they will say the exact same thing to the person they meet before you or another person in line behind you.  I swung into the McDonald's drive-thru line this morning & ordered up a Burrito & coffee.  When I rolled up to the cashier window she said, "I must be dyslexic this morning."  She was half talking to herself as well as me as she seemed to fumble with a roll of quarters.  I wanted to reach out, put my hand on her shoulder & sincerely say, "thank you so much for an original greeting."  Doesn't it just bug  ya when people say, "Hello, how are you today."  It's a programmed response we all have that comes out as an automatic saying & do most people really care when they say that to a passing stranger.  If they did they would stop & wait for your response.  But they don't & just blow right by & lay the same saying on the next person.  Wouldn't you just like to turn around some time, grab hold of a person & say, "Soooo, you really want to know how I am today do you!!!!"



As I rolled up to the second pick-up window at the same McDonalds another lady fried my brain with the standard high pitched, "Have a nice day."  That decades old worn out insincere saying is like fingernails on a chalkboard for me.  It's another one of those habitual programmed responses that doesn't mean a hill of beans.  That busy window lady couldn't care less if I ate my Burrito backwards or drove over a flock of lost fish worms. 



Have you ever been in the wrong lane at a grocery store & crashed your cart into somebody & have them tell you they're "sorry."  My fault, but they say they're sorry.  What's with that.  I'm the one who should be saying, 'sorry' but of course I never do because the other person has already apologized for my mistake.  No point in two of us standing there trying to out-sorry each other because before long somebody else would come along, bump into us & say......well, you know!!



Rick made mention of a word yesterday in his blog that has been sticking in my craw for the last bunch of years.  When I saw it bugged him too I knew I wasn't the only one & it was time to write about it.  Behind the most used, abused & meaningless word in the English language, which I happen to think is 'SALE,' this other word is in fierce competition for second place if it is not banished from the Kingdom forever.  It has been used to describe a fly walking across a counter, paint drying, any piece of clothing designed since man first walked upright, any picture, photo or painting, regardless of who did it or how absolutely awful it was.  The word has been used with every noun known to man & will go into the history books as the most used adjective of all times.  Some would use the word to describe 'road kill' while others would use it to describe their best friends recent but totally horrible hair do.  Every thing from toenails to nose rings.  Horse radish to Squid lids.  Stuffed bikini's to brain salad soup.  It is a word I absolutely refuse to ever use whether writing it or saying it aloud.  A whole gaggle of stampeding Buffalo couldn't pull that word out of me.  Not even a last minute peanut butter & honey sandwich in front of a Mexican firing squad would entice me to use the word in describing my one ounce of upcoming lead poisoning.  In fact, this word bugs me so much I can't even tell you what it is now because I would have to type it in here & that would very surely cause me to throw up all over my keyboard.  So, I'm just going to let it go & simply say, "don't you just think this last paragraph has been simply...AWESOME!!"



(the pumpkin pic is not it on the net)

The humidity has totally knocked the stuffing's out of me again today.  I don't know how Kelly stands it over there at Deer Park.  No A/C in the office & she's generally outside helping people with BBQ problems, getting extra towels for people or fixing this or that, etc.  If I did half the work in this heat she does I would probably be cooling my heels in the local morgue by now.  She takes after her Dad, who despite how gravely ill he is at the moment, just refuses to take it easy. It is just not acceptable to him that he can't be out cutting the lawn or planting beans in his garden or something.  It is just not humanly possible for a person to be as sick as Kelly's Dad & still be alive.  I have never seen or heard of anyone having to endure the absolute cruel tortures of aging as much as this man.  Kelly's Dad is an incredible walking medical miracle.  And yet, something about all that daily suffering this man is enduring just doesn't seem right to me!!  But, that's another whole blog post some time.........................:((



I just got another 'bk or bx' error message when I tried to leave a comment on RICK'S BLOG about taking his Canon off it's auto setting so I will just add a comment here.........Auto settings on camera's generally do a satisfactory job for most people & the quality can be very acceptable.  But, if you want your already reasonably good photos to look better you are simply going to have to take the time to understand a little bit about basic photography before coming off 'auto.'  Just no way around it.  Read & understand your camera manual.  Lighting & composition are two of the biggies.  I see a lot of people's photos in blogs that are OK, but could be a lot better with just a little effort, interest, & understanding of their cameras, photography basics.....and Picasa:))  You just have to decide where your priorities are & how much time & effort you want to put into your blog photos.

Got another early morning start tomorrow whereupon my travels will take me through our wonderful rural countryside again:))



GROANER'S CORNER:((  Tales from the Doctors office.........................

Let me tell you about my doctor. He is very good. If you tell him you want a second opinion, he will go out and come in again.
He treated one woman for yellow jaundice for three
years before he realized she was Chinese.  While he was talking to me his nurse came in and said, "Doctor, there is a man here who thinks he is invisible." The doctor said, "Tell him I can't see him."

Another time a man came running in the office and yelled, "Doctor, doctor, my son just swallowed a roll of film."
The doctor calmly replied, "Let's just wait and see what develops."

One patient came in and said,
"Doctor, I have a serious memory problem."  The doctor asked, "When did it start? " The man replied, "When did what start?"

I remember one time I told my doctor I had a ringing
in my ears. His  advice: "Don't answer it."

My doctor sure has his share of nut cases.
One said to him, "Doctor, I think I'm a bell." The doctor gave him some pills and said,  "Here, take these. If they don't work, give me a ring."

Another guy told the doctor that he thought he
was a deck of cards. The doctor simply said,  "Go sit over there. I'll deal with you later."

When I told my doctor I broke my leg in two places,
he told me to stop going to those places.  You know, doctors can be so frustrating. You wait a month and a half for an appointment, and he says, "I wish you had come to me sooner."


Tourists see the world, travelers experience it.


It's not the concept of God I have a problem's his fan club!!



AL'S SMUG MUG PHOTO GALLERY (a work in progress)

The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right now...... AL.


  1. AWESOME!! I wonder how many of these comments you'll get tonight?

    As for the "comments" problem you had with my blog, it was most likely the infamous "bx" blogger error codes. I had switched to "embed comments" below posts recently. I've just changed it to go back to "pop-up" windows. Maybe that will resolve the problem.

    Nice pics of stuff around Goderich!

  2. Pretty intensive blog tonight, Al...What you need is a LARGE dose of Arizona sunshine and mountain vistas...Ease up there, big fella...You look just fine to me..But..I know how you feel..Nothing against Dennis, but I have been mistakenly accused of being in his graduating class..1960..HELL, I GRADUATED IN 1966, FOR GOD'S SAKE!!! Go pet your wonderful canines from the Bayfield Bunch... LOVE YA!!!!!

  3. I will use that word one more time..'AWESOME' POST..and you will never see it again in my blog or a comment from me..!!..Have a nice day!..and I do genuinely mean that!!..try and stay cool!!!

  4. Al, your descriptive powers are not able to be imitated by anyone. Good job!

    And now, I just have to say, did you notice that awesome sale?


  5. I just had to come back and comment on the "awesomeness" of that hay bales photo!

    Also, my blog last night about using "manual" settings on my camera sure wasn't meant to be any kind of "tutorial" as some thought - heck I just started using it "for pete's sake"(is that saying ok?).

    Sure would like to hear your thoughts sometime on lighting and depth of field. The back display of my G10 pretty much shows me what to do when I'm in Manual mode so that really helped me out a lot.

    Have a nice day - NOT!!!

  6. Sometimes, when I read your blogs after a long day, I get lost in them. I think from now on I'll read them in the morning when I'm fresh of mind. :) I can relate to your first paragraph, however, since a recent neighbor thought I was 72 years old! I about croaked! :) Not awesome at all! :)

  7. AW..........Shucks! I don't use that other word you referenced either! Fun post tonight!

  8. Al,
    Could it be you have moved from cursmudgion to just plain ole Ass!

    McDonalds make their employees say these tried and wore out lines. Bet it makes those kids day to get to see you come thru in all your snarling glory. Give em a break and cook your own damn breakfast!!
    Just Sayin

  9. Well I know I've left you many comments regarding your Awesome pics and I have also said that I hoped you had a nice week ahead. (I actually do mean that because I know you can get grumpy about not liking Sundays). Guess I won't do that anymore, at least not on your blog. Awesome is an overused word so I guess I'll have to get out the thesaurus to find some new ones. more time. Your pic of the pumpkin was...IMPRESSIVE. (awesome) :)

  10. Maybe that nurse thought the lady patient was a cradle-robber and you were a fine young gigalo? LOL

    P.s. my 2 year old grandson was looking at a water fountain the other day. His one word comment? "AWESOME" !!!

  11. Maybe it's the beard Al since my white mane grew out I haven't been asked if I was old enough for the senior discount, I just get it automatically now, also two scouts asked me if I needed help crossing the street, I wonder if Rick has the same reaction with his beard, but it does open the possibility of part time work as a "helper" at Christmas Time. Now that would be, (here it comes) AWESOME..Be safe out there. Sam & Donna...

  12. Sorry about your luck in the hospital, perhaps that elderly lady doesn't think she's that old and was flattered when the nurse mistakened you for her husband (a younger man, whoot!).

    Nice pics once again. I could take lessons from you, but my pictures are taken with a point and shoot, so it would be worthless. But I do think of you when Im taking an.....awesome...shot. (I wonder if Al would think this was worthy).


  13. I ain't a-gonna use those words today. But I will comment, as I have before, about your photographer's eye. Which one of us amateurs out here would have taken the picture of those railroad tracks or of the straw bale? You're the one, and you made them works of the photography art. Now I gotta go back and read Rick'e earlier blog (I've been out of touch recently and missed that one!)

  14. Al,
    I have to agree with you on that word. Way overused and mostly meaningless. When I get one of those "canned" greetings, I usually answer with some absurd response just to see if they are listening. Maybe half of them don't get it, many just give me a funny look. But some start laughing and realize what they did. Hopefully they smile the next time.

  15. Like Sam, with the white and gray hairs in my beard I get a Senior discount even though I haven't (yet) hit 60 (must wait another month for that milepost).

    Would you know why so many vessels on the Canadian side of the big puddles bear men's names? Just curious.