My blue collar grandfather doing assembly at Eberhard Manufacturing, back in the day.

Okay, let’s be honest, I am a relatively liberal guy and I have been voting mostly democratic my whole life.

Now it is incumbent upon me to vote the straight ticket. It will not always be easy as I have a few democrats I would like to send packing.

I feel as if I have no choice in the matter.

My roots are democratic; my family was and still is relatively blue collar. My grandfather lost his job with the railroads when strikebreaking was the thing of the day and he, rebellious person he was, was striking.

Why straight democratic?

Take a look at our situation and see that our government is in a shambles and its decisions are nothing short of frightening. Are there good republicans? Yes, one of them just passed away recently, a true patriot and leader, John McCain was. There are also many republican collaborators. Collaborators they are and we must thus call them.

I hope that they rot in hell. Too bad I don’t believe in the existence of this hell. As Jean-Paul Sartre said, if I may paraphrase, Hell is the people we are surrounded by. Look at these individuals as they act like toadies and cozy up to a leader whose clear idol must have been German and with the first name of Adolph.

Take Paul Ryan, who has vacillated back and forth in his love affair with our fearless leader and allowed the horrible things like children being taken from their mothers, never to see them again, and did NOTHING!

So, as far as I am concerned, my current major effort in life is to do all that I can to see the powers that be put into the cabinet of history where their malignant behavior will be put to shame. They have nothing to be proud of and deserve to relegate the rest of their lives to total atonement for the atrocities committed against the American people and its system.

Posted in Life in general, The Scandal of the 2016 Presidential Elections, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment

The weather and such…

I cannot get over the dahlias and the colors!

The weather is such that I don’t even know where my ‘Honey Don’t List’ might go. Do I put the net up early to keep leaves out of the pond? Do I start preparing the plants that have done outdoor time for their movement into the house? So many questions, so little time.

Actually, I am more concerned about the massive hurricane growth in the Atlantic (and Pacific too). It seems kind of crazy.

We have friends who had just arrived in North Carolina only to realize that their vacation is going to be cut short as there is an evacuation in progress. I just saw that Washington DC is under possible attack as well as they have already gone beyond their normal amount of rain and their land is mush. Any more rain, coming as a result of the hurricane hitting land, would cause serious issues. As if DC doesn’t have enough going on?

Last night we saw the President remover, Bob Woodward, talking about his book, ‘Fear.’ We can only hope that he is able to add another President to his ‘take down’ list. I remember oh so well being in my Ford Pinto without air conditioning on a hot day on a Chicago highway when we heard the joyous news that Nixon had resigned. The only problem this time is that the Vice President is almost scarier than the current man in office.

As a total change of subject here, I am writing this in a Word document and all of a sudden all the words are coming up underlined in red. I know the issue, I need to highlight everything and put it the entire document in English. For whatever reason, periodically when I start typing, it switches language. I guess my laptop is way too bilingual.

We are waiting for our grandson; his sister is going to preschool for an introductory segment, with her mom. He will be with us while it is all taking place.

Okay, I am beyond three hundred words, I guess my stream of consciousness is over for the day.

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More on the Symphony

Grandpa Bori ‘smearing’ paint on my mom’s garage in Parma, Ohio.

Chills down the spine, that is the expression that describes our experience at the James Lumber Center of the College of Lake County. I actually think that the cost of $39 is too cheap and I cannot believe I am saying that. Why all the seats were not filled is beyond me. The music, although I am not a professional, is so overwhelmingly beautiful in a wonderful acoustic setting, that anything but a full house seems odd.

We had seats in the middle of the row, the row being row F, just six rows in. After a brief intro by the Executive Director, Timothy Corpus, everything began. Vladimir Kulenovic, a tall, athletic maestro who behaved like a charismatic dancer on the podium, gave clearly informative intros before each performance: Weber’s Overture to Der Freischütz, Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto No. 1, and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5. Kulenovic spoke with his very good, slightly Serbian accented English and relates very well to his orchestra and the audience.

The performances we have seen of the Lake Forest Symphony are never ones where you can doze. Because of the wonderful, short explanations filled with interesting trivial tidbits, you totally relate the background with what you are hearing. You cannot help but be enthralled.

It is clear to me that music is another language. Music is poetry and expression and is filled with the emotions of the composer and totally affected by the interpretation of the conductor and the performance of the individual orchestra members.

It didn’t hurt that we went with our friends who are very active in the world of music, one of whom is a former band director in the middle school. They both explained many things to us that we didn’t know about, like the standard use of the baton in conducting and how Kulenovic sometimes used his own variations instead of the traditional.

At the wine reception afterwards, we actually had a chance to speak to Kulenovic and Schwarz (the cello soloist for the Cello Concerto No. 1 by Shostakovich) and to orchestra members. My biggest shock was that the orchestra only meets about three to five times to rehearse for a performance. Given what we saw, I am totally blown away.

Standing ovations were in order and the Sunday afternoon performance lasted longer than the Saturday night rendition.

One last thought, Shostakovich is not always the most loved composer, but with the background information Vladimir Kulenovic gave us and the fact that I recently read a book on Shostakovich by Julian Barnes recently, I could totally feel the pain and emotion of a composer living in Stalinist Russia and always under the threat of its Caligula-like leader to imprison and/or execute him.


Meanwhile, painting continues.

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Two coats and a Symphony

What a symphony! Those of you who care about classical music and have not experienced the Lake Forest Symphony are missing out!

The second coat of paint always goes on more smoothly and faster. Invariably, I forget that and that was proven out as I was stalling to get started on a Sunday morning, not wanting to leave my coffee and newspapers.

I did manage to force myself out and within a few hours, the cabinets were pretty much completed and the backs of the doors as well. In the end, the coverage was just a shade under needing a third coat of paint. I will know more tomorrow. I am guessing that being garage cabinets, I may just forego the third.

Of course, as I wrapped up the paintbrush, I realized I hadn’t done something. One of the cabinet sides had not received its required second coat. So I had to unwrap the brush and reopen the can of paint.

So far, it is looking really good. I have the door fronts to paint and then I get to put the hardware back on and reinstall the doors.

After that, I have to paint the filing cabinets, which have already been primed.

I did this all before noon so that I could get ready to go to the Lake Forest Symphony. I am excited as the program and the Symphony are both top notch. Here is the blurb:

“Lake Forest Symphony begins its season with one of Carl Maria von Weber’s most popular works, the Overture to Der Freischütz. Following the overture, one of today’s leading cellists, Julian Schwarz, makes his Lake Forest Symphony debut with Shostakovich’s landmark Concerto for Cello. Maestro Kulenovic then leads the orchestra in Tchaikovsky’s famed Fifth Symphony, a striking romantic staple and favorite among audiences everywhere.”

The paint is drying and I am excited about the concert.

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I’m ‘gonna smear it up!

My grandfather was a notoriously bad painter. He didn’t care. I am sure that if he had put his mind to it, he would have done a great job, but he was convinced that it was not worth the effort. He kept everything in tiptop shape but when it came to painting, he would just ‘smear it up.’

I channeled my grandfather the other day. I primed the old kitchen and bathroom cabinets I have in the garage for storage and was not the most careful. I got paint on garage floor, among other places. When it came to continuing, since I was in the groove I found other things to paint and I primed the old filing cabinets I have. At some point in time, Eberhard Manufacturing, where my grandfather and my mom had both worked, and I think my Uncle Joe as well, got rid of office furniture when I was in high school. I took two filing cabinets and carefully repainted them with Rustoleum paint in blue. I painted the drawer fronts red and white. At some point, I took the drawer fronts to one of them and repainted them light blue to be able to keep them in the house.

When we got some Stickley furniture for the office from the Alonzi estate, we put the filing cabinets in the garage.

I primed them and unlike the previous times finishing them, I painted around the hardware.

I also primed the garage wall cabinets and their doors. I made the garage organization an absolute shambles.

Saturday morning, I painted the wall cabinets and the backs of the doors in oil base, gloss gray. It took me much less time than the original work the day before. Mind you, when I inspected and cleaned the existing wall cabinets I was painting, I found them pulling away from the way. I had some ‘shoring up’ to do.

Now I will have to put another coat on and then do the door fronts before repainting the filing cabinets. Then I shall have to put the hardware back on.

I am a bit crazy. While doing this, I also threw things out in my efforts at Swedish death cleaning.

Next stop, kitchen painting.

Posted in Cleaning, Cleanliness, Life in general, Painting, Thoughts and philosophy | Leave a comment