Tag Archives: global warming

Draining the Swamp but not the One You are Thinking About


Friends of Padre Steve’s World,

It has been an exhausting day as I used my shop-vac to remove over 250 gallons of water from my back yard. Since the yard was graded by the builders toward the house the deepest areas were on the patio. The water in the yard ranched from an inch to five inches and after 14 days in which 12 involved rainfall amounts of an inch to three inches a day there was no way for it to drain or evaporate. The rain stopped Monday afternoon and Tuesday was sunny and dry, but there was no noticeable change in the amount of standing water in the back yard. The water was at the very threshold of our back French doors and found was to leak into the house, but thankfully not much got in and we were able to prevent any damage and dry things out before thinks could get worse. But I had to  get the water level down as rain is back in the forecast beginning Saturday and will last several days.

We live in an area called The Tidewater which includes southeastern Virginia and northeastern North Carolina. The term was the name given to it by the early English gentry settlers as a polite term for a swamp. Speaking of swamps, the Great Dismal Swamp, aptly named by George Washington in his pre-General and President days when he was a surveyor is about 20 miles from where I live.

We have plenty of other swampland, and swampland that has been developed or paved over, including the parcel of land where I live that makes coastal flooding, or flooding caused by major rain events a rather routine experience, made worse by Global Warming and Sea Rise which has created a crisis for the United States Navy, which does not deny either and even produced a report on the danger.

The Tidewater is the home of Norfolk Naval Station which is the largest Naval base and the home port of five Aircraft Carriers. Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth is the oldest and the second largest government shipyard in the United States, it overhauls nuclear submarines and carriers. Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story is the home of East Coast SEALS, EOD, Expeditionary, Coastal and Riverine warfare units, as well as Amphibious ships and amphibious support units. Naval Air Station Oceana is the hub for East Coast Naval Aviation, Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, is the Premier Naval Medical Center on the East Coast now that Bethesda is part of Walter Reed. The Tidewater is also the home of Joint Base Langley-Fort Eustis, the home of many Air Force Fighter Squadrons, the Army Training and Doctrine Command, and Transportation Center and School, and a host of smaller installations critical to national security, as well as the home of Newport News Shipyard, the private shipyard that produces all of our nuclear Aircraft Carriers, and conducts their mid-life reactor overhauls. Believe me, my problems with my backyard are very small potatoes compared to the national security issues to our nation represented by Global Warming and Sea Rise, which by the way Norfolk at the Sewells Point Buoy has the highest rise recorded on the East Coast in over a century.

How the hell did I go there, this was all about me initially, but then maybe it wasn’t. Many ordinary homeowners in the area face similar issues that I face because of unscrupulous real estate developers who stripped away the topsoil and built directly on the clay often not grading the soil away from the homes they built. In fact the developer who built our development and many others in the 1980s and 1990s ended up in jail when exposed for all of his deceit, fraud, and criminal negligence that he inflicted on people.

But let me go back a bit. We have a lot of low lying land and many inland waterways in addition to being on the Atlantic coast. Much of the land has minimal topsoil with a thick layer of clay just below. It doesn’t drain easily especially when the natural wetlands that provided protection were paved over in the name of progress, without any thought about the long term damage to our area.

So today I vacuumed out and dumped in storm drains in the front of my house those 250 gallons or more of storm water. Tomorrow I meet with a contractor to get gutters and stains that will direct storm water out of my back yard. Next week  a contractor begins work on painting and dealing with other work inside the house and my front porch. A friend has an electrician who will fix a couple of issues and replace my rare baseball motif ceiling fan in the kitchen and Judy’s Tiffany Coca Cola hanging  light fixture also in the kitchen. I will be getting another contractor to fix my storage shed. I’m waiting on my window contractor to get the new windows and install the  and then I will be ready to put on the market, hopefully no later than 1 April.

In the meantime I need to arrange for a POD unit to take out things that need to be removed for work inside and and sort through to determine whether to keep or discard and to ensure we can stage the house for sale. With what we have done and what we are doing I expect to get a lot more than we paid for it, just based on what the same house and floor plan are going for today.

I have more to write about but it can wait until tomorrow night, or rather later tonight.

So until then,

Peace,

Padre Steve+

 

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Filed under Climate change,, History, Loose thoughts and musings, national security, Political Commentary, US Navy

More Time with the Oral Surgeon, Thank God for Global Warming and Randy Johnson Retires

More Time with the Oral Surgeon, Thank God for Global Warming and Randy Johnson Retires

Back to the Dentist

Well I had my follow up visit with my oral surgeon today and well, it was not a routine “it’s all good go away” kind of visit.  On Saturday night or Sunday morning one of the stitches came out of the site.  I wasn’t bleeding from the site; it was a little sore so I called the resident on call who said that if it got worse to come in.  The day was uneventful although I wasn’t feeling that great and the pain got a bit worse during the day requiring Vicodin before I went to bed.  I woke up Monday not feeling too well but was behind on a bunch of things that I needed to do.  I scheduled my follow up appointment for today but by 1300 on Monday I was feeling bad enough to need more Vicodin so the boss sent me home to take it and get some rest.  I came to work not feeling a lot better and still a bit under the influence of the medication and went in to dental.  When they took me back they saw swelling and the first dentist saw puss and called the oral surgeon.  He immediately went to wore and had the site irrigated and then took me back to one of the oral surgery rooms where once again I was hooked up to monitors, and had an IV placed and was given a bolus of 250 ml normal saline prior to an infusion of IV antibiotics.  He told me that we needed to do this because if the site got infected it might necessitate removal of the implant as well as the bone graft.  After that I was given a prescription for more antibiotics and sent home with instructions to take it easy, take the antibiotics and keep the site irrigated and to return to work Thursday with a follow up appointment for early Friday morning.  It has been weird as I have been pretty wiped out physically by this but doing okay emotionally.  So we’ll see how the sequel to the “Undead Tooth of Terror” continues.  Hopefully it will be a happy ending and I will not have to have the work taken out and have to go through a bunch of time again before I can get it fixed.

Cold Enough to be Thankful for Global Warming

If anyone hasn’t noticed it has been pretty cold across the eastern 2/3rds of the United States as well as many other countries in the Northern Hemisphere.  In fact it has been like record setting cold all over the place, Europe, Asia, North America and even places like Peru.  Trains are getting buried in snow drifts in China, record snow and cold elsewhere and even the little lake in my neighborhood has ice forming on it.  There is no relief in sight.  Forecasters are saying that this could be the coldest winter in at least 245 years.  Back when I was growing up in the 1960s and 1970s climatologists were predicting a coming ice age and encouraged folks to dress warm for a long time.  Then in the late 1980s and early 1990s there came a movement saying that everything was getting warmer at an alarming rate.  This has grown into the Global Warming movement and dare I say industry.  We had a very mild summer this year and it has been cold as hell this winter.  Now I am not a climatologist but if needed cold play one on TV.  It is my ersatz climatologist persona that says that I don’t think that some of the real climatologists are telling us the whole truth.  To me it seems that the global warming thing may not be all that it is cracked up to be.  All I can say is that if there is global warming I’m glad that we have it because we would really be freezing our asses off.  Even so I will dress warm and put on my gloves.  At least the dog doesn’t mind the cold so long as it is not raining.

Randy Johnson Winning Game 300

Finally an era in baseball has passed.  Future Hall of Fame pitcher Randy Johnson officially retired from the game today.  The 46 year old Johnson pitched 22 years beginning his career at Montreal with most of the time with the Mariners and Diamondbacks but with stints with the Astros, Yankees and his last season with the Giants.  In his career he won 5 Cy Young Awards, pitched a no-hitter and a perfect game, and was a 10 time All-Star and the 2001 World Series MVP.  Over the years he pitched in 618 games, starting 603 of them. In those games he pitched a total of 4135.1 innings won 303 games and had a career 3.29 ERA and was second only to the legendary Nolan Ryan with 4875 strikeouts.  The batting average against him was only .221.  He was one of the most feared pitchers to play the game almost any hitter who had to face him would tell you that he would rather not have to face Johnson.  Johnson was known at times for his intensity a piercing gaze and at times snarling look at batters, and an at times equally icy relationship with reporters.  What is truly amazing about Johnson is that he achieved what he did against a plethora of players who have either admitted to using or highly suspected of using steroids and other performance enhancing substances.  He pitched his last season with the Giants where he got his 300th win.  The season was certainly not his best and he finished the season on the disabled list, however we saw a man who was genuinely appreciative of the game and those with who he played.  As a person who at times can be testy and give good glares and snarls I understand someone like Johnson who pushed himself hard and came back from injuries to stay competitive well past the age that most other players are ensconced in second careers or retirement. Even more so because I have played on a number of teams within the military and I am now quite a bit older than most people my rank.  Randy Johnson has had a magnificent career and I wonder if we will see another 300 game winner anytime soon.

On a humorous note I had a comment to my “about” page from someone with the ID of “El Cid.”  Seems that Sid believes that I am deceived of course not providing me any help to see just what I am deceived about. His comment “You are so deceived” stuck a chord in me.  So I just had to respond.  Here is that response:

“Cool, don’t know what about but glad to get comments like this. Must be doing something right. The fact that you refer to yourself as El Cid shows me that you fancy yourself a General in the fight against the Moors or have delusions of being Charlton Heston.”

So anyway, as I take my pain meds and head off to bed I wish everyone a good night.

Peace,

Steve+

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Visiting the Super Holy International Temple: The Ten Pretty Good Suggestions

I was visiting the Super Holy International Temple a few weeks back when I had a revelation…well maybe not exactly a revelation but a somewhat differently inspired inspirational moment of unquestionable inspiration.  Or maybe it was just my mind was a raging torrent, flooded with rivulets of thought cascading into a waterfall of creative alternatives through my insomniac  PTSD’d brain after one too many beers at Gordon Biersch.  Whatever it was, I can assure you that it was something that was important enough to write about.   As the beneficiary of a relatively limited amount of wisdom and wanting to ensure that I am not becoming a Harry Tick I decided to check this out with the Deity Herself.

So I did so and indeed the Deity has allowed me to pass this wisdom on to my readers.  Most of it deals with me but the application might be applicable to anyone who feels that is applicable to them, otherwise if not applicable readers should not make any application whatsoever to the way that they live their lives.

With that in mind this was what I received in that moment of differently inspired inspirational moment of unquestionable inspiration, what I will call the Ten Pretty Good Suggestions:

1. Dude, you don’t know nothing about a lot of things so don’t go making it up as you go along hoping that I will agree with it just because you found a Bible verse to back it up.

2. Likewise since you don’t know nothing don’t you go piddling about telling people that something was my will.   While it may have been, it just may as well not have been. That is for me to know and you keep your mouth shut about, especially if it was one of those really sucky times where something bad happened to someone who obviously did nothing to deserve it…like little kids dying of cancer, women losing babies when they really want them, young people getting killed in war, people who are good people who love God and demonstrate love to others getting terrible diseases or watch family members and friends suffer while really sucky bad people seem to prosper and stuff like that.

3. Bad things happen to good people and bad people alike, just as good things happen to good people and bad people alike. The rain falls on the just and the unjust and this is why the Dodgers have won a number of World Series since coming west and the Giants haven’t.

4. Shit happens to both good and bad people not because the Deity wills it or the Devil is causing it but simply because pain, death and suffering are common to all due to the fall.  Hey, that one rhymed so quit calling bad things “acts of God” or God’s will” since you don’t know nothing anyway.

5. The Deity does not take religious instruction from you Padre otherwise the creation would be far more fouled up than it has become, it doesn’t need your help.  So please remember to thank me for Global Warming otherwise you’d be freezing you ass off down there.

6. Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean that the Devil is out trying to get you.  Just because he is a “roaring Lion seeking out someone to devour doesn’t mean that you are worth a whole lot of his time.  Since he has made enemies with the Deity and had his head whacked at the Cross, he is probably not screwing with you at this moment.  If you believe this Padre you are way too full of yourself and need to do some serious confession.   Make no doubt there Padre, the Devil is out there and the proof is in artificial turf on baseball fields and aluminum or composite bats, those are unnatural and definitely the work of the devil.

7. Padre, just because you believe something really hard does not mean that I believe it or will just try to make you happy by allowing it to happen.  Just ask Cubs fans last year when they thought they were going to the World Series…it didn’t happen.

8. You may not like it but you game is going to get rained out once in a while so move under the awning sit back and watch the grounds crew do their thing.

9.Don’t you go thinking that just because you did something that you think is special there Padre that I have to do something in return for you, like I love you and all that but dude I don’t owe you squat.  My love, giving up my Son to die on the cross for you and the salvation of the world, including your sorry ass isn’t enough?

10. Since you don’t know nothing instead of telling people going through hard times that it is “God’s will” or “from the Devil,” simply admit that you don’t know and walk with them through the valley loving them and caring for them on the way, knowing that “even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for you are with me” and “I will be with you to the end of the age.”  Like duh? I think that those are even in the Bible there Padre.  Just like “in this world things will often be really sucky and stuff will go against you but be happy dude because I have overcome the world.”

So anyway after receiving that I had to stop and think, you know like dude, those are pretty profound.  So since they are applicable to me don’t assume that they are applicable to you unless however they are applicable in which case you should make application and apply them.  Somehow I think that there are a lot of folks who like me are tired of having people try to tell them how to live their lives or how God somehow figures into something bad happening to them when in fact it may not be God, or for that matter even the Devil either.  Maybe shit just happens.  I know that I got tired of people feeding me full of how they knew what God was doing in my life when bad stuff happened.  all the way back in seminary when things went to Super Holy International Temple on me.  Why should I inflict the Super Holy International Temple on others?

Peace, Steve+

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Filed under Baseball, Loose thoughts and musings, philosophy, PTSD, Religion