Wednesday, January 21, 2009

This is not Dad. This is Mom!

How do you like our new paint job?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

War in November?

You may have seen this already, but a friend of mine forwarded it to me. It is very, very sobering to think that Israel would strike Iran and what might then ensue.. Who knows what that would set off given the situation in the Middle East? I think they see it as self preservation and preemptive in that if they wait and Iran does get a nuclear weapon, it might be literally lights out for Israel. And if Iran did drop a bomb on Israel, what would be the appropriate response of the US and the rest of the world? There is no scenario there that is comfortable or foreseeably good in its outcome.

It could be lights us for the whole world at that point. I have no idea what the solution is and I suspect there is more talk with this guy Armadillojad or whatever his name is....than action, but.......if you are Israel and want to survive and the whole world is against you except for the US, what do you do? What length should they go to insure their own survival but at the same time not start World World III.

It is enough to keep you up at night. Whomever becomes President will have to deal with this in some manner that is for sure.



A military showdown with Iran may be fast approaching.
By Joel C. Rosenberg

(Washington, D.C., July 8, 2008) -- War clouds continue to build in the epicenter. Last month in Rome, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad vowed that the United States and Israel would soon be "annihilated," language he had not used so explicitly since October 2005 when he promised to wipe Israel "off the map" and urged Muslims to "envision a world without the United States." This week, his regime authorized a new series of Iranian war games. He ordered the digging of 320,000 graves to bury the enemies of Islam. He is calling for the unification of the Islamic world politically and economically, including the creation of a single currency.

What's more, Iranian TV is running a new anti-Semitic documentary film series entitled, "The Secret of Armageddon." Setting the stage for a coming apocalyptic war that will usher in the Islamic Messiah known as the Mahdi or the "Twelfth Imam," the series focuses on a series of Bible prophecies that inform Jewish and Christian End Times theology. While the presentation is grossly distorted, some facts do emerge. Iranian scholar Dr. Ismail Shafe'i Sarustani , for example, tells viewers that the word "Armageddon" is "originally a Hebrew word" and "is a real geographical region, situated south of Haifa," noting that "the place was shelled by Hizbullah during the 33-day [July 2006] war." Iranian historian Mohammad-Taqi Taqipour notes that "these [Evangelical Christians], along with the Jews, believe that the War of the End of Days will take place in the desert of Megiddo, in Palestine. They believe that Jesus will return, and that then there will be a millennium of happiness."

The series, however, accuses Jews who were victims of genocide -- during the very Holocaust Ahmadinejad denies ever happened -- of actually planning to commit genocide. "There is a genocidal Zionist Jewish plan for the genocide of humanity at the hand of the Zionist Jew-boys," claims one Iranian researcher interviewed for the program. "The Zionist Jew-boys talk about a 'Greater Israel' -- from the Euphrates to the Nile -- but their actual goal is world domination." At one point, Iranian researcher Shams Al-Din Rahmani argues that "the goal of the Zionists is the total destruction of Islam."

During the June 7th episode, the narrator embraces anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and proceeds to try to justify Iran's own war plans. "Today, there are many indications that the 'hidden hands' of world Zionism were involved in the 9/11 terrorist attack. According to a large group of Western intellectuals, the Zionists are the real rulers of the United States. According to irrefutable documents published by independent American media outlets, the Zionists used intelligence agents and spies, with the full cooperation of agencies with the country, to carry out this terrorist operation in full view of the world, in order to prepare the ground for taking over Afghanistan and Iraq, and to realize the dream of a greater Israel."

Top Israeli intelligence officials, meanwhile, increasingly believe that time is running out. They believe that Iran could have nuclear weapons within a year and one former Mossad chief is urging his country's leadership to launch a massive series of air strikes against Iranian nuclear and other military facilities before it is too late. Israel's Air Force just conducted a test run of such a bombing mission.

John Bolton, the former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., says he believes Israel may strike Iran sometime in late fall or early winter, after the U.S. elections in November but before the inauguration of the next American President on January 20. A senior Pentagon officials told the Washington Post several days ago he is worried about the same scenario -- a November surprise -- prompting both President Bush and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs to make strong public statements warning the Israelis not to take such actions. Until just a few weeks ago, it was widely believed in Israel that new parliamentary elections would be held in November. But at the last moment, Defense Minister Ehud Barak withdrew his threat of voting to bring down the Olmert government for a few more months, leading some to speculate that Barak may be calculating that Israelis couldn't be fully immersed in an electoral campaign and a bombing campaign simultaneously.

The U.S. does not want Israel to strike. After all, the repercussions of such a war with Iran would be global in nature. Israel would face tens of thousands of incoming missiles not just from Iran but likely from Syria, Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza and possibly the West Bank. Some of these missiles could have chemical and/or biological warheads, even if the nuclear warheads in Iran are not yet ready. Ballistic missiles would also be likely fired from Iran at the oil fields in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States, at oil tankers in the Persian Gulf and the Straight of Hormuz, and at U.S. bases and forces in Iraq. Tens of thousands of suicide bomber cells could be activated in the region -- especially in Iraq and Israel -- and perhaps even in Western Europe and the U.S. and Canada. Iranian efforts to topple Jordan's King Abdullah II and/or Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in favor of radical Islamic regimes friendly to Tehran could also be set in motion. Oil prices could shoot from $140 a barrel to $300 a barrel or more. U.S. gas prices could spike to $7-$10 or more, with horrific domestic and global economic repercussions.

No wonder Washington doesn't want a war with Iran. No wants such a war. I certainly do not, and neither do the Israelis. Yet, the U.S. does not have a convincing plan to stop the Iranian nuclear weapons program in time. Nor does the U.N., or the E.U. Diplomacy isn't working. Economic sanctions have been imposed on Iran since 1979 to little strategic effect. Unfortunately, the words of Sen. John McCain keep echoing in my head this week. In April 2006, the senior Senator from Arizona appeared on NBC's Meet the Press. He said, "there's only one thing worse than using the option of military action, and that is the Iranians acquiring nuclear weapons." For if Iran gets the Bomb, he said, "I think we could have Armageddon."


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Breckenridge, here the Foster's come!!

This is a picture of the outside of the cabin. It is stunning on both the outside and inside.

These are some more pictures of the Jensen cabin. Mom and I went up there last weekend to check it out. It is really awesome and it will be wonderful to be here with all of you for few days. Sorry for the pictures being so lousy. Not good at this. We looked it over and came up with some tentative assignments. There are 5 bathrooms and 4 big bedrooms with multiple beds in them. It will be tight, but we can do it.

One of the 5 bathrooms. All are beautiful and most have an overhead showhead!!

One of the bedrooms with two queen sized beds in it. It has its own bathroom. This might be for Jeff and Angie and Ty and Dana and the Monica and Kelly.

This is the bunk room. We think this will hold Laura and Adam and Drew and Kristen. Megan tells us that there are two beds that pull out from the bottom. We didn't see that but those would be nice for Max and Cal. You can kind of see the two handles at the bottom. That just pulls out into another bed under both bunks. Not perfect but we think it will work.

This is the game room downstairs with a pool table and a foosball table and TV and DVD player.
Fireplace also is in this room. Hideabed in the couch here so Matt, Wendi and Sy-Guy will have this when they come up.

Upstairs looking across the living room into the kitchen and hallway. Sitting area to the right and dinning room table that seats about 10 to the left.

Looking into the kitchen from the same hallway in the center of the last picture. Table in kitchen seats about 10 also. Two refrigerators, microwave, freezer......the works. This will work great.

This is a second master bedroom. This will be perfect for Mark, Liz and their kids. (we think)

This is a huge closet that will serve as Meggie's bedroom. It is really quite large and with and air mattress will work just fine.

This is the other master bedroom that Mom and I will have. It has a big bathroom as you can see and Meggie and Mom and I will share this one.

The famous spool we have told you about. It can seat at least 10 if not more. I can see some heavy conversations coming down in this spool.

Outdoor patio with a barbeque. Some serious grilling can go on here.

That gives you a bit of a flavor of what this place is like. Of course all the snow will be gone so it will be gorgeous.
So looking forward to it. We can get in sometime the afternoon of June 11th and will have to be gone by early afternoon on Sunday, June 15th.
We still owe money to Mark as follows: (unless you have paid him already) Please try and get him paid if you haven't already as soon as you can.
Matt & Wendi - $100
Ty & Dana - $150
Jeff & Angie - $100
Drew & Kristen - $75
Adam & Laura - $75
Mom & Dad - $250 (paid)
  • Mark has agreed to come up with a loose agenda of things we want to do.
  • Dana & Ty will assign the meals to various families. (Let's only do one or two big breakfasts with the rest just cereal and stuff and on your own)
  • Jeff and Angie/Matt and Wendi - Music entertainment
  • Adam and Laura and Drew and Kristen - games and competition of some kind
Any ideas, just let Mark know what you would like to do and he'll crank it in. A lot of down time and just chilling is requested by Mom and Dad.

Friday, February 22, 2008

My German Encounter

I have been in Orlando all week at a meeting. It wasn't that much fun as the weather was lousy and it was fairly chilly for Florida and the meetings weren't all that much fun either.

On my flight home to Denver, I got on the airplane and had an aisle seat but noone had taken the middle seat yet or the window. I decided to keep standing until they got seated. I saw a young but tall drink of water coming down the aisle with a friend who was just slightly smaller. I said to myself, "please don't let them be the ones sitting next to me." It will be a horrible 4 hour flight being all cramped in with two giants sitting next to me" I failed to think about what they must have been thinking about moi being sitting next to them!!.

Anyway, as they sat down they were speaking a foreign language to each other. I now said "Oh Great!! Now it is 4 hours next to two people speaking a language I don't understand and taking up "my space!!" I was kind of in a grumpy mood after a 3-day meeting and so just wanted to stretch out and sleep. (I had to get up at 5 in the morning (3 a.m. in Denver) to catch a 7 a.m. flight so anyone of you would have been just as grumpy. About 30 minutes into this flight, the guy in the middle fell asleep and he was leaning over into me with his head in his hands. I said "Oh great" Now the rest of the way to Denver I was going to have this Bozo leaning on me."

After about two hours of this the tall drink of water touched me on the arm and had his ticket out and in kind of a panic spoke to me in very good english. His ticket showed that they were to leave Denver for LA at 10:10 a.m. and it was 9:55 a.m. already by his watch and he thought for sure they had missed their flight. I explained that tickets are always shown in local time and that there was a two hour difference between Orlando and Denver and so it was really only 7:55 a.m. and that we would arrive in Denver at 9 a.m. so they would have a full hour between their flights. He and his friend just howled and thought that was funny and expressed that they felt kind of foolish and thanked me. I said no problem and went back to reading what I had out. It was a article about Ronald Reagan's economic policies...Supply-side economics and the like and he asked me what I was reading. I explained and he said he spoke good enough conversational English to get along but when it got off of any light conversational stuff like supply-side economices he got lost. I remembered that is what you all said when you were learning foreign languages; that is was tough to talk anything not used in everyday "chit-chat" and gospel discussions.

He then asked me for my USA Today which had an article on the NBA on the sports page about all the trades that were made. He told me he wanted to know what players went to what team on the big trade day. We talked about BB a bit more and I found out that they played a bit of ball themselves. The tall drink of water was 6'7" and his friend was 6'5". We made quite the row on that flight!! I kidded them that at least they weren't as "big" as I was.

So as the flight progressed, we started talking about all kinds of things and I remarked how good their English was except they struggled with understanding me sometimes when I used words they didn't understand and their thick accent made it difficult for me as well. Turns out they were employees of Disney World and were working in the German pavilion at Epcot Center. They were on a one-year work permit and were trying to travel around the US during their days off to see the country. They were headed to LA for some vacation time. We talked about where they should go in the future to see the US. WE talked about their schooling and how it is different in Germany than in America. We talked about living here in America and how much they liked McDonalds where they could get a hamburger for $1.0 whereas in Germany they would pay closer to $3 for that same burger. They were on a one-year work visa and were going to be here till August, 2008. They told me all about how Disney recruited them in Germany and what their job was and that Disney let all they young peole like them be restaurant server's the last three months so that they could make more money with tips and all. They made about $200 per week but Disney gives them rooms and they all live together with young people from other countries. (French, Italians, Russains etc...... all of them not able to speak to each other for the most part except in English...kind of interesting) He told me that he thought English was easier to learn than German and that he had taken it in school for 7 years and it really helped to talk to me in English as he said most of the time (80% of the time) he and his friends would speak in German to each other and that is how they kind of grouped at Disney World. (by native tongue) The conversation went on for the rest of the trip or well over an hour.

As we de-planed in Denver, we shook hands and I showed them to their flight and they told me that if I got to Orlando to come to the German pavillon and they would serve us. I told him that if they served us well I would give them a nice tip!!

As we departed I was smiling because I realized that I had almost passed up a delightful experience due to my own mood and wanting to just be left alone. It was an interesting thing to experience and I thought to myself, here are two very nice young people (they were 20 years old) who were on the adventure of a lifetime and just making the most of experiencing another country and culture. I had contributed some little bit to their impression of America and Americans and we left as friends. It kind of reminded me of some of the Great American Road trips you guys have gone on yourselves.

I felt a little ashamed of how I had initially thought about them and kind of committed that I would approach such things in the future with a little bit of a better attitude.

Another learning experience for me. One of many I'm afraid that I need in life, even at my age.


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

An Internal debate with myself

I took Megan to downtown Denver last Saturday to get her hair cut. It was free and we figured it was worth it to get her hair done by Gardner Edmunds who is learning to be a Stylist.

It took 3 hours if you can believe it!! I had a lot of time on my hands. This school she went to is right on the 16th street mall. It was Saturday morning about 8:30 a.m. I was surprised how many people are in downtown Denver at that time of the morning.

As I left the building she was in, a lady in a wheel chair who had only one leg approached me and asked for money. I declined but soon thought badly of myself about that. I always decline to give money to panhandlers that approach me but admittedly I had never been approached by someone like her. I walked on but turned to watch her go up the 16th Street mall asking everyone that came along. A good number stopped and gave her something...I have no idea how much. Not everyone but maybe half of who she approached seemed to give her something.

During that three hours I walked up and down the mall looking in windows and the like...even stopped to sit as it was a fairly nice morning, even if a bit chilly. I was approached 3 or 4 more times by different folks that morning and observed many other people who also were approached....some gave them something but most just walked on.

As I observed this part of life which I am somewhat insulated from, I pondered my own reaction to being approach so often by so many people that are apparently under real duress in their lives. I even went into a McDonalds where there were maybe a half dozen people eating or having some coffee but definitely looking like homeless folks. I wondered if that was going to be their meal for the day or if is just a routine they have to go from the street to a fast food place to feed themselves from whatever they can get.

My self examination about my reactions to this, I'm sure isn't that different than many of you when approached by these types of people. Many of them are obviously mentally challenged and many are pushing carts full of stuff and appear to have little if any worldly things...maybe barely enough to stay clothed.

Every time this happens to me I question what I really should do. It isn't the money...that I know. A couple of bucks here or there is nothing and has nothing to do with my feelings. I always wonder if by giving them something if I am somewhat enabling them to continue this life style rather than encouraging them to pull themselves up and improve their circumstances. I know this isn't probably in the cards for some of them...maybe most of them, but don't you wonder if some of them could get a job, could try and clean up, get off the booze and improve themselves if they really wanted to?
I so admire organizations and people who make this a job try and help these sorts of people to get out of the horrible life they are living. It also seems to me or so my rationalizaton goes, that by giving them money it just prolongs the circumstances they find themselves in.

On the other hand, I worry that they don't eat well enough, don't have enough to keep them warm or anyway to clean up and change clothing and the like. It is troublesome and I thought to myself, "why don't I engage them in a conversation, see what their circumstances are and see if I can help in some way?" But I never do that....I usually just pass on by almost afraid of these folks and what they might do or say to me.

I think, if this was the Savior what would he do? I don't think he would pass them by, but I don't think he would encourage them by giving them a dole to continue on in the path they are going. What is the answer for us individually? I wish I knew this answer for myself.

I am between the proverbial rock and a hard spot on this as to how I feel about my own reaction and lack of action of any kind.

It is a bit of a moral dilemna to me and I was wondering if any of you have any insight or thoughts on the matter. It is something I have struggled with for a long time in my life.

I want to do what is right and I do have compassion for their circumstances but my actions would seem to contradict this statement.

What do you think and does anyone have similiar questions or feelings about this subject?


Thursday, November 01, 2007

Tag, Your're it!!

I guess I have to answer this. I now realize what a dull life I have!!


Four jobs I’ve had:

1. My first job that I can remember was working for my brother, Jamie when I was in college. He had a weed business called Hoe No Mas and he would pay me to pull weeds that the chemicals didn't get. It was hot and horrible work as we would do the medians in the City of Tucson and people would honk and yell at us as we pulled the weeds.

2. I worked at Hughes Aircraft for a summer job during college after I was going to Arizona. Coach Larson had some connections. I was in the Test Engineering department and earned a whopping $600 per month. (Huge at that time in 1967) I was mostly a gofer for the engineers and worked in purchasing and small projects that the engineers would give me.

3. After I finished playing BB at Arizona and Margaret had a job, I worked in the computer center at the U of A. The person who ran that was a friend of my brother (John Moffat) and he was dating my sister Kathy's best friend. he gave me the job and mostly it was sitting there watching the computer run different programs. (The computer filled up the whole room in those days) I would run the grade reports and other various reports for various departments in the University. I was going to my 5th year of college to finish up my EE degree so I was able to study alot when a program was running. (a big sort or something like that)

4. I have had my current job, working for Westinghouse and ABB, basically the same type of work for 36 going on 37 years. Anyone want to buy a transformer?

Places I’ve Lived:

1. Lived in Coleta, IL for my first 6 years. It had a population of 200 people. Don't remember much about it.

2. Lived in Tucson (very hot) until Margaret and I moved with Westinghouse to Pittsburgh (age 22), Cinncinati, LA and finally Kansas City. Loved Kansas City for 2 years.

3. We then moved to Omaha for 5 years. First time I had experienced -60 degree chill factor.
(very cold)

4. Lived in Jefferson City, Mo for 11 years.
(Very humid and tornados alley)

5) Have lived in Littleton for going on 19 years. (Just right)

3. Movies I love: (not in order of preference)

1. Any Pink Panther movie.
2. Sound of Music
3. Frequency
4. Any Tom Hanks movie
5. The Sting
6. Most John Wayne movies (later ones for sure)

Favorite Foods:

1. MEAT!! (especially steak)
2. strawberry shortcake
3. Nice salad with blue cheese dressing
4. Bar-b-que pork steaks (umm, umm)

Four weird things about me:

1. I like to do crosswords and Suduko. (I'm the family champ on both)
2. I love to beat Goose, Kristin and Dana at anything!! It bums me out to lose to anyone of those three. It hurts.
3. I can't sleep well without a fan blowing on me and making some nice noise.
4. Don't like people reading over my shoulder.

Favorite Shows:

1. Lost
2. 24 but I think I'm about burnt out on 24. This year will be my last, I think since it is going to be hokey.....they have done away with they will say Cloie is gone!!
3. Any sports game. (Broncos, Nuggets, AVs, BYU football, Arizona BB etc.)
4. Seinfeld
5. Are you smarter than a 5th grader? (jk)

Places I’d rather be:

1. With my wife, all my children, their wives and all of my grandchildren.
2. Driving on a road trip with no schedule and no hurry.
3. Hawaii - Heaven on earth. I could probably be convinced other warm places might equal Hawaii. (i.e. Costa Rica, New Zealand, Australia etc.)
4. With my wife somewhere where we can be alone and just be together. (doesn't happen that much any more)

People I am tagging:

Matt and Mark

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Name that title

I got an e-mail and thought it was humourous so I thought I would post it.

I have always loved Country Western Music (for a little while that is) and one of the most creative things about it are the lyrics and titles of the songs. Not sure there is any music genre that is so full of clever play on words, funny thoughts and just plain dumb titles as Country Western Music.

Here are some titles of real songs. I may have thrown in a fake one or two. Can you tell me which ones are not real? Unfortunately, most of them are about a breakup, a broken marriage and stuff like that, but I have to say some of them are funny although inane to say the least. Have no idea what the music to them is like, but it is probably just as bad as the titles.


* I Keep Forgettin' I Forgot About You 

* Mama Get A Hammer, (There's A Fly On Papa's Head)

* Her Teeth Was Stained, But Her Heart Was Pure 

* I Don't Know Whether To Kill Myself Or Go Bowling 

* I Just Bought A Car From A Guy That Stole My Girl, But The Car Don't Run So I Figure
we got an even deal.

* I Still Miss You Baby, But My Aim's Gettin' Better 

* I Wouldn't Take Her To A Dog Fight, Cause I'm Afraid She'd Win 

* I'm So Miserable Without You, It's Like Having You Here 

* She Got the Goldmine and I Got the Shaft 

* You Done Tore Out My Heart and Stomped that Sucker Flat 

* If The Phone Don't Ring, It's Me

* I Changed Her Oil, She Changed My Life

* If You Don't Leave Me Alone, I'll Go And Find Someone Else Who Will

* My John Deere Was Breaking Your Field, While Your Dear John Was Breaking My Heart

* You're The Reason Our Kids Are So Ugly

* If You Leave Me, Can I Come Too?

* Am I Double Parked by the Curbstone of Your Heart?

* At the Gas Station of Love, I Got the Self Service Pump

* Come out of the Wheatfield Nellie, You're Going Against the Grain

* I Gave Her My Heart And A Diamond And She Clubbed Me With A Spade

* I Want a Beer as Cold as My Ex-Wife's Heart

* I Was Looking Back to See If You Were Looking Back to See If I Was Looking Back
to See if You Were Looking Back at Me

* I Went Back to My Fourth Wife for the Third Time and Gave Her a Second Chance to
Make a First Class Fool Out of Me

* I Wish I Were A Woman (So I Could Go Out With A Guy Like Me)

* I Flushed You From The Toilet Of My Heart.

* My Wife Ran Off With My Best Friend, And I Sure Do Miss Him

* She Made Toothpicks Out Of The Timber Of My Heart

* When You Leave Walk Out Backwards, So I'll Think You're Walking In

* You Can't Have Your Kate And Edith Too

* You Were Only A Splinter As I Slid Down The Bannister Of Life