Monday, January 26, 2015


YOU JUST HAVE TO WONDER ABOUT THAT.  Or is it just me.  On a recent trip to a city in the north country, my wife and I did eat at a restaurant. Or three. And often had a hard time finding a place to park. Cause there were a lot of people wanting to eat at that restaurant also. And as we drove down the city streets, we noticed that other restaurants had full parking lots also. Morning, noon and night. All kind of places. Fast food burger places. Walk in and sit down places. Pizza places. Name it and it had a full parking lot. And just yesterday, a Sunday, as I went to church early in the morning, the two restaurants that are open for breakfast were full. At least the parking lots were full. And on a return trip home around noon, they were still full. Or full again. Just have to wonder. Does any one eat at home any more. Do they even know how to cook? I can assume that there will come a time that people will have to eat at home and they may be in a world of hurt when that time comes.  AND THAT'S THEY VIEW FROM THE DITCH BANK

Tuesday, January 20, 2015


AT LEAST I THOUGHT I WAS. Now, not so much. Why, you ask. Oh, you didn't ask. Well, if you continue to read I'll tell you. I think I have mentioned this before, but in case you missed it, I am an old person. Old enough to take an old peoples magazine. AKA AARP. And in a recent issue this is what I read. These are things that will make my old people life easier and improve my life.
An earphone that uses bone conduction. A high tech type earphone. AfterShokz As500 Bluez 2 ($100.00) or the Panasonic BTGS10 ($200.00)
Then there is the Insight Switch ($60.00) that I can plug in between electrical outlets and home appliances and then turn them on or off with WeMo smartphone app. I can even get a test message from a pot roast. I can get a Crock Pot for ($130.00)  and turn down the Chili while I am at work. Or where ever I may be. It will ping when it is done. Also the WINK line connected home products and the HUE lightbulb set from Phillips ($200.00) which is controllable via a tablet or smartphone. I can also get my medicine in a special bottle with a Vitality Glow Cap ($80.00). The cap chirps when it is time to take a pill and I can press the button beneath the cap to order a refill. 
I can get a Pen ($150.00) that will write like a normal pen but it then sends what I wrote to my I phone. And if I don't have an I phone, but use Android products instead there is the Equil Smartpen ($150.00) that will do the same thing for a smart phone. Or I can get a Where's My Keys finder ($25.00) with four different colored receiver fobs to help me find keys that may have wandered off. Or a GreatCall Touch 3 ($150.00) and with a ($25.00) per month contract, it will contact me to emergence responders and I can receive medication alerts.  And if I am having trouble with the regular smart phone, I can get the Amplicom Power Tel 785 for ($250.00) which has big buttons and an out size volume capacity.  A separate wrist band unit vibrates when a call arrives, and then lets me answer with out picking up the phone. Eat your heart out Dick Tracy.
And if that isn't enough I can get the Jawbone's UP24 band ($130.00)  and the Polar Loop activity tracker ($110.00) that I can wear 24/7. It tracks how well I sleep, and as soon as the UP24 learns your sleep patterns, it will gently awaken you by vibrating when you are in your lightest sleep period. And in case I should get Alzheimer's, I can buy a GPS Smartsole, ($299.00) which is an insole for my shoes with a built in GPS tracking chip, so I can be found if I wander off. Or I can buy the Apple Watch ($349.00) and has a built in fitness tracker and a lot of watch-ified apps. It takes an i phone to make it work, though. And the Samsung Gear 2 NEO ($200.00) which does double duty as a portable music player. Or Motorola's MOTO 360 ($250.00) with a circular face and analog display. Voice activated controls means I can get directions by talking to my wrist watch. Man, Dick Tracy didn't know how good he had it.   
Had enough yet?  If not, then here's just a little more.
Smart Bandages with a wireless medical sensor that uses nanotechnology to take dozens of readings (heart rate, temperature, respiration rate, for example, displays them on a mobile phone or the internet and call your doctor when it senses a problem. Or contact lenses that measure glucose levels, deliver drugs and detect cancer. Or pills that contain a sensor activated by stomach acid to take readings and sent the data to a skin patch receiver, which relays it to a Doctor or caregiver. 
Well, if you have made it this far in this post, you may need one of those devises to issue you an aspirin to help with the headache. Now, I will admit that I have a phone that is smarter than I am, and I use it to make calls on and even occasionally send an e mail. But I can assure you, If I am capable of learning all the things listed in this post, and am willing to spend the $2798.00 to purchase all these things, I don't think I really need them. And if I need them, I probably don't have the mental capacity to learn them. Sounds like a vicious circle. One I would only get dizzy in. 
Seems like a lot of technology for those young enough to like all that. If I need to make a note, I will use a pen on paper, not one that costs too much money and sends the notes to a smart phone that I won't use any way. And all for what.  To make my life more miserable, not an improvement like the article tried to tell me it would.  I'll just stick to the old ways and embrace a little of the new ways. Like being able to blog. AND THAT'S THE VIEW FROM THE DITCH BANK

Friday, January 16, 2015


OR BEARS AND WOLVES:  I have posted about some of this in the past. So this is really just an extension of a previous post. If you didn't read the previous post, just scroll through the old posts till you find it. If you are up to the task. And want to. OK, I am getting off track here, like I do in most of my posts. So, I'll get back on the road to what little bit I am offering today.
News Item 1. This is an update of the previous post. The Fish and Wildlife service had proposed to extend the range for the reintroduced Mexican Gray wolf. There has been a lot of pros and cons about this, from both sides of the subject. I will cover some of those. The proposed extension of the range will allow the wolf to range as far North as the I 40 corridor in both New Mexico and Arizona. There are three zones for the wolves to live in and each zone has it's own rules, and encompasses the one previous to it. The largest zone, which will reach I 40, will take in several towns and small cities as well as the Southern half of Albuquerque. The Fish and Wildlife service has said when the wolves range into areas where there are people, they may have to be removed. Well, I guess the people in the small towns that the wolves can now live in don't count as people. Only when they get to the larger places is the welfare of the people of a concern. It will be interesting to see them in downtown Tucson or Phoenix or Old Town Albuquerque. Both are within the new range guidelines. Sorta.
On another note, there was a news item on TV this morning that the Bear population in Florida had reached a low of 1300 bears back in the 1990's so a law was passed to make it illegal to hunt them. Now, the Bear population in Florida has reached over 3800 and there are numerous Bear and People confrontations, with some people having been attacked by the Bears. So, some are wanting to bring back Bear hunting in Florida. Of course, there are those who say that is not the solution. Those who disagreed with the Bear hunting solution didn't have a solution, they just didn't want that one.  Well, I have a solution.
Trap them and bring them to Arizona. That way the Mesa Bear won't have to go shopping all alone and will have some one to help spend the Lost Dutchman Gold that the Mesa Bear apparently found back before Christmas. They can even team up with the wolves and all go together, roaming around the country side and city  scapes of these two states that the politicians seem to think are just an unpopulated area any way. Maybe they van find Smokey and learn how to prevent Forest Fires and walk around holding a shovel and giving warnings about fires to all the tourists that come from Florida to see the Bears.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015


In a time not so distant nor far a way, one that took place in the waning years of the previous century, it was determined by someone with initials after their name, that I had a problem with my kidneys. I eventually reached a point that I was privileged to visit a dialysis clinic three time's a week for a period of 23 months. Then I was privileged to receive a new kidney from someone who had the misfortune of passing away. I was sorry for them and their family, but happy for me. Kinda one of those things that makes one think, as my fortune was based on someone else's misfortune. Well, I rocked along with this new kidney for nearly 14 years and then something happened.   What, I don't know, but those people with all the initials after their names have a name for it. And that is the purpose of this post. Not the name, but the process of determining it. So, if you dare, read on. If not, click off and go do something useless, like get on facebook or something. Not that reading this post is useful.
It seems that back in October of last year, at one of the bi annual checkup's I have, it was determined that there was a problem with this transplanted kidney. So, in December I went to the local vampire's and they sucked out some blood to be tested and it was determined that I had too much blood, so I had to go back the following week and have more blood extracted by a gleeful lady who enjoys her job way too much. ( Actually, she has problems of her own and is a very nice lady, but to say that would contrary to the theme of this post. )
As a result of that extraction, it was decided that I needed further testing by drilling a hole in the transplanted kidney and getting a core sample or three. So, back to the local vampire to have 10 tubes of blood sucked out of my fainting body and sent off to the Doctors with all the initials to decide what, exactly, needed to be done. it was decided that early in this year, I was to report to a surgical center in Albuquerque at 7 o'clock in the a.m. of the appointed day. Thus, my wife and I hooked the horses up to the wagon, threw in a little luggage and off we went to check in at a local hostel in the fair city where my future was to be determined. At 6:50 in the a.m. of the appointed day, I, with my wife, arrived at the place of needles and scalpels, and a cute little nurse crooked her finger at me and said, "Here, take off all your clothes and put on this dress." Maybe I need to back up just a little. I was told to take a shower with a special soap on the night before the appointment and then shower again on the morning of the appointment. The wanted to be sure I smelled good for them. I didn't ask if they had to smell good for me also. Now, when the nurse told me to undress and then put on the dress, she said I could leave my socks on. Guess she was afraid of foot odor or something, although she seemed to have a foot fetish, cause she kept massaging my feet. Her memory wasn't very good, either, as she kept asking me what my name was and what my birthday was. That seemed odd to me, as she had all that written down on a paper that she had. She seemed to be really nice, but the next thing I knew, she was needleing me. And this dress she had me put on opened at the back. Now, I have been married for a year or 50 and I know that, Hollywood excepted, dresses that open in the back have a zipper or something to close it up.  All this one  had was a couple of little strings to tie at the neck to keep it from falling off. And then after the nurse finished needleing me, she went under the front of my dress to slap three sticky pads on my chest area. Boy, I would be in trouble if I tried that.  Then she ask me my name and birth date again. Then another nurse came in and she had a foot fetish also. And her memory wasn't any better than the first one, cause she kept asking for my name and birth date information. Finally, 20 minutes late, the Dr's. got there and the second nurse wheeled me into a surgical room. Where I met another lady with a camera on a tube that was supposed to look at my insides. And she couldn't remember my name or date of birth either. And they kept asking me that question. Man, I know they hadn't seen me before, but you would think they could remember that little bit of information longer than a few minutes, especially since they had it written down. I think they thought they would confuse me and I would forget, but I fooled them. I never did forget who I was. Then, the nurse with the camera tube and the Doctors, shot me with some kind of juice that made my skin numb, and then they used this long thin drill steel to drill into my kidney for a core sample. Seven times. Seems like all those initials after their names didn't help with the drilling process. They were finally satisfied, though, so then the nurse wheeled me to recovery room. There she turned me over to another nurse with a foot fetish. And a memory problem. I wonder if I had ask them what their name and birth date was if they would remember that without a paper in front of them. But, all in all, even with their fondness for massaging my feet and asking me who I was and when I was born, they were really nice.  And then the first nurse that had me put on the dress, came in and needled me again and then she said I could take off the dress and put on my regular clothes. And she smoothly reversed the needle process that had started all this. Then, when she said she would escort me to my car, but I couldn't drive it, I ask her if she wanted to race. She said, nope, get in the wheel chair and she would wheel me there.  Man, along with the fetish and the memory problems, these nurses sure can wheel people around. And with nary a bump any where along the way. 
I guess I produced some blood while I was there, however, as I had to go to another vampire den the next morning so they could suck out three more tubes of blood. And other things that I will not mention here. For testing, they said.
All in all, most every thing in this post aside, I was treated very well, and know that all concerned had only my welfare at heart. And I thank them.

Thursday, January 1, 2015


2014 IS NOW PAST AND 2015 IS JUST BREAKING:  Since I ended 2014 with a post that was kinda on the negative side, I decided to start 2015 with a post that was on a more positive note.
Because, well, I am really a rather positive person. At least most of the time. No matter how bad things are, I can usually look on the bright side and be positive about the eventual outcome.  I also don't make New Years Resolutions, as a general rule. I feel that if there is need to change, then do it when the need arises, not wait until a new year arrives. That being said, I thought to mention a thing or two here about the upcoming year.
I realize I have no control over the outcome of what may happen during the upcoming year. And in spite of their constant predictions about the weather, often including the long range view, weather people have no control over the weather, either.  We all know, OK maybe not all, who is actually in charge of the weather.  And that same Person is also in charge of my future. Oh, I know I have some control. I can make goals and decisions, but things will inevitably happen that will change those goals and decisions that cause me to make course corrections not only during the year, but through out my life. 
So, on that note, I resolve to try to be even more positive about the future and plans my wife and i have made.  And no, I will not share them here. They are not for public consumption. Just know that there are some in place. I also resolve to try to be more tolerant of my fellow man. There are some that will make that one especially tough.  May have to take this one person at a time. And decide on who the person is. 
Now, having put that out there for the public of one or two who actually may read this, I will have be on my toes, ( no I am not going to take up ballet) and try, try to really make personal progress for my self and let others do the same.
It may be difficult at times, but we will see what happens 365 days from now.  AND THAT'S THE RESOLVE FROM THE DITCH BANK