Father’s Day Pain

So I’m going to be a bit of a wet blanket today. So sue me. I’m reposting a Facebook rant here because of the insensitivity of some people with regards to this (i.e. some remarks “at least you still have yours.”). Many of us have deep seated pain on these days, and I’m no exception.

If you want to stop reading now, no problem. I understand. If you dare to continue, please try not to be too judgmental and be forewarned there is some very strong antinatalist language in this rant. If you are offended by such I suggest you stop reading.

I repost this not to make anyone feel sorry for me, but to hopefully make you think twice about passing judgment on a total stranger for any reason. You just don’t know what they’re enduring.


It’s officially Father’s Day, a day that is admittedly quite painful for me. Not because of my lack of children (I wouldn’t have them if you paid me!) but because of a painful past.

The man who is half responsible for imposing existence upon me without my consent is nonexistent in my life and never really was a part of it. He left my mother before I was even born. They were actually separated at the time I was conceived. I was the result of a broken condom and a one night stand after my grandfather (who I never met) passed away. He never tried to communicate with me as a child and I didn’t even talk to him for the first time until I was 21 years old when he sent his daughter (only child from his 2nd marriage) to scout me on social media (then MySpace), and even then he only did that because of a massive accident he had that shocked him and brought me back into his conscious mind. Like really? Guilty conscience much? Needless to say the lines of communication weren’t open for long.

Enter my step-father almost six years after I was born. He was hot-headed, ill-tempered and closed minded. He thought from the start I was just some problem child with discipline problems and was bound and determined to beat me into submission. Little did he know that I was just autistic and I couldn’t help it. Our relationship would be turbulent all the way until age 14 when the school counselors implored him and my mother to get me an evaluation. It was only then he listened to reason, though I had long suspected I was on the autism spectrum due to a late night news report on it a few years prior. He just didn’t want to accept it and thought it was a figment of my imagination.

All that said, it is my step-father’s surname that I bear. That was made official not too long after they married and he’s been the only real father figure I’ve ever had. In my adult years I’ve somehow found a way to forgive him for his past transgressions and today we have a pretty good relationship. We still have our issues on occasion but it’s not as bad as it used to be.

As for my biological father? I haven’t heard from him in 10 years and I doubt I’ll ever hear from him again. He and his daughter just seem to have no interest in it. I guess in a way I don’t blame them. I’m a total weirdo and I’m sure too weird for them. Whatever. I try not to dwell on it but sometimes it’s hard.

I do not post this story for sympathy or pity. Rather, my intention is just to remind everyone that many of us have endured pain that one cannot know of or comprehend. Maybe it’ll give you a brief moment of pause before you pass judgment on a total stranger. You don’t know what they’ve been through.

Song Lyric Sunday 6/17/18 – My Grandfather’s Clock (And Sequel)

So Song Lyric Sunday comes once again and this week our theme is time. OK, cool, I get to share some useless knowledge with everyone this week!

Have you ever wondered why they call it a “grandfather clock?” The technical name for a free-standing floor clock is “tallcase” or “longcase” clock, but how did they get the common nickname “grandfather clock?” The common and popular nickname actually comes from a song! This song was written by Henry Clay Work in 1876 and tells the tale of the narrator’s grandfather’s floor clock. The song was so popular the nickname stuck and that is why we call it a grandfather clock today (oh the things you learn from being an amateur horologist [clockmaker/watchmaker]).

So with that is the song “My Grandfather’s Clock.” As with all classic folk songs, there are countless versions, but I’m choosing a version by a little known artist named Tom Roush as I feel he does the song the most justice.

My grandfather’s clock was too large for the shelf,
So it stood ninety years on the floor;
It was taller by half than the old man himself,
Though it weighed not a pennyweight more.
It was bought on the morn of the day that he was born,
And was always his treasure and pride;
But it stopped short — never to go again —
When the old man died.

Ninety years without slumbering
(tick, tock, tick, tock),
His life’s seconds numbering,
(tick, tock, tick, tock),
It stopped short never to go again when the old man died

In watching its pendulum swing to and fro,
Many hours he spent as a boy.
And in childhood and manhood the clock seemed to know
And to share both his grief and his joy.
For it struck twenty-four when he entered at the door,
With a blooming and beautiful bride;
But it stopped short — never to go again —
When the old man died.

Ninety years without slumbering
(tick, tock, tick, tock),
His life’s seconds numbering,
(tick, tock, tick, tock),
It stopped short — never to go again —
When the old man died.

My grandfather said that of those he could hire,
Not a servant so faithful he found;
For it wasted no time, and had but one desire —
At the close of each week to be wound.
And it kept in its place — not a frown upon its face,
And its hands never hung by its side.
But it stopped short — never to go again —
When the old man died.

Ninety years without slumbering
(tick, tock, tick, tock),
His life’s seconds numbering,
(tick, tock, tick, tock),
It stopped short never to go again when the old man died.

It rang an alarm in the dead of the night —
An alarm that for years had been dumb;
And we knew that his spirit was pluming for flight —
That his hour of departure had come.
Still the clock kept the time, with a soft and muffled chime,
As we silently stood by his side;
But it stopped short — never to go again —
When the old man died.

Ninety years without slumbering
(tick, tock, tick, tock),
His life’s seconds numbering,
(tick, tock, tick, tock),
It stopped short — never to go again —
When the old man died.
Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Grandfather%27s_Clock#Lyrics

There is also a sequel to this song that is much lesser known. This version of the sequel is also performed by Mr. Roush and was written by Work in 1878.

Once again have I roamed thro’ the old-fashioned house,
Where my grandfather spent his ninety years.
There are strangers in charge, and the change they have wrought–
Oh! it saddens me, even to tears.
Dear old clock! when they found you were speechless from grief,
Then they went and swapped you off, case and all.
For that vain, stuck-up thing
(tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick),
For that vain, stuck-up thing on the wall.

Grandfather sleeps in his grave;
Strange steps resound in the hall!
And there’s that vain, stuck-up thing
(tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick),
There’s that vain, stuck-up thing on the wall.

While we talked of the old clock they all ran it down.
Tho’ they claimed that it couldn’t be made to run.
It was useless they said– it was quite out of style;
Built, no doubt, just about the year One.
And the words echoed round, with a faint, mocking sound,
As if some one gave assent to it all;
‘Twas that vain, stuck-up thing
(tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick),
‘Twas that vain, stuck-up thing on the wall.

From the clock-peddler’s cart in the junk-shop it went,
Where its cog-wheels were sundered one be one;
And the brass-founder joked as they writhed in the flames–
“Melt’em up,” says he; “then they will run.”
There is grief in my heart, there are tears in my eyes.
Yet indignantly the sight I recall
Of that vain, stuck-up thing
(tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick),
For that vain, stuck-up thing on the wall.

“An extremely hard case!” said the junk-dealer’s wife,
As she carried it for kindling wood and sighed–
That mahogany case, with its quaint, figured face,
Which so long was my grandfather’s pride.
“There is hope for the small; there’s a change for us all;
For the mighty ones of Time, they must fall!”
Says that vain, stuck-up thing
(tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick),
Says that vain, stuck-up thing on the wall.
Source: https://www.poemhunter.com/poem/sequel-to-grandfather-s-clock/

So that’s it for this week. I hope you learned something this week and enjoyed the songs! Until next week everyone.

Product Review: Maximum Strength Sting-Kill Capsules


Living out in the country has its hazards, and one of those hazards is insect stings. Bees, yellow jackets, paper wasps and bumblebees are almost constantly buzzing around in my back yard. Usually they’re keen to just leave you alone but every now and then you do draw the ire of one of those buggers and she’ll give you a good sting. It happens.

I first heard of this product on Brave Wilderness, the YouTube channel hosted by Nathaniel “Coyote” Peterson. Coyote has taken some rather intense stings over the years, from velvet ants, tarantula hawks, warrior wasps, bullet ants and soon the so-called executioner wasp. Whatever the case, this benzocaine and menthol based gel is in his arsenal for all the crazy stings he subjects himself to.

This was an impulse grab at the pharmacy this past Thursday, after hearing Coyote rave about it. Little did I know I’d have the opportunity to try it out the very same night!

So I was smoking my evening cigar minding my own business when out of the blue a rather irritable paper wasp decides to tag me on the back of the hand. I wasn’t doing anything to that little thing; it just came out of the blue and got me, the sorry bitch! Oh well, as I said, risks of country life.

So I got a vial of the sting kill and followed the instructions. Application was quick and easy and immediately had a refreshing cooling effect on my skin. About 30 seconds later the benzocaine took effect and completely eliminated the burning sensation from the venom. I was truly shocked at how well it worked!

Needless to say I highly recommend Sting-Kill and believe it should be in every medicine cabinet. Insect stings happen, but they don’t have to be more painful than necessary. Easy to use and cheap, do yourself a favor and get some. You’ll thank me later.


Summer/Fall Tattoo Concepts

I’m definitely itching for a new tattoo. It’s been almost three months since my last ink session and I long to feel the keen sting of the needle etching an artistic design into my dermis once again.

Alas, I didn’t have a clear concept as to what I wanted until today. I was trying to look for inspiration but my recent trip to Texas Motor Speedway gave me the perfect idea – race cars.

So with that I think I will get a matching pair of tattoos – a NASCAR and an IndyCar, same location on opposite sides of my body. I will go with my two favorite drivers for this – Martin Truex Jr. on the NASCAR side and James Hinchcliffe on the IndyCar side.

I’ve pitched the idea of a matching pair to my artist and she loves the idea. Stay tuned for preliminary sketches that hopefully will turn into skin art in the not too distant future!

Welcome to Sunday Social

Let’s all head over to Rachel’s for our weekly get-together.

Rachel McKee~Illuminated Literation

Sorry for the late start today!

Sunday Social is a place to mingle, collaborate, and share our blogs. Sunday Social is one more place where you can share a post that maybe didn’t get as much feedback as you were hoping for. Sunday Social is a place to meet new bloggers.

This weekly post is a “wild card” of sorts. There aren’t many rules but I do ask that you follow a few guidelines.

  • Give honest, constructive feedback, but always be courteous.
  • If someone takes the time to comment on your post, please return the favor and check out their endeavors too.

How do you participate?

It’s very easy.

  • Copy and paste the link to your blog or a specific blog post in the comment section below.
  • Give us a little blurb about your blog, the feedback you are looking for, or if you are just hoping to meet some…

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2018 Texas IndyCar Weekend Reflections and Photos

I got home about 30 minutes ago after the drive back to Abilene after a fun-filled weekend at Texas Motor Speedway in No Limits, TX. Other than it being incredibly hot (95F/35C for highs both days) it was all out a fun time.

So I arrived in Fort Worth on Friday afternoon, went and had a nice sushi lunch at Wild Sushi and Ramen, a little hole in the wall place just a few miles down the road from the hotel I stay at. After lunch and grabbing some snacks to stick in my cooler for the weekend, I made my way over and checked into the hotel, only to get situated and head out to No Limits.

I picked up my pit passes and went into the gate to peruse the pits for awhile. Friday was spent mainly in the garage area looking at the cars and then I stepped into the garage for the post-qualifying tear down. I also got a couple of up-close pictures of an IndyCar just to show how technologically advanced they are. Note the steering wheel – it looks like a video game controller!


That was about all the excitement in the pits because Friday night was the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race, and NASCAR isn’t as fan-friendly as IndyCar. To get into the garage in any NASCAR series you have to pay an arm and a leg for their own pass. IndyCar lets you in with just a VIP facility pass – something NASCAR should learn from IndyCar if NASCAR wants to bill itself as “the most fan accessible sport.” Sorry, when it comes to fan accessibility, IndyCar kicks NASCAR’s ass.

The Truck Series race was entertaining as always, granted no pictures were taken during the race because let’s face it, a cell phone does not capture very good pictures of a fast moving car. Oh well.

Saturday found me sleeping in after a late night and going back again to Wild Sushi and Ramen for even more deliciousness. Yes, you can tell I love my sushi – I can eat myself sick on it. After a satisfying lunch it was back to the track again for the main event of the weekend: the DXC Technology 600 IndyCar race.

As I was an “early bird” I received this free commemorative bobblehead doll of James Hinchcliffe. Only the first 20,000 got them and as Hinch is my favorite driver it was a “must have” for me:


After that it was time to go walk the pits again, this time heading into the garage to watch the crews frantically working on the cars to get them race ready – from fine-tuning various systems to firing the engines to verify all is in working order:


Then I moseyed on over to Sunoco Victory Lane where I got a pic with the sponsor car. That was fun and free so why not?


Yeah dude, it was so hot out there I actually rolled up my sleeves in addition to sporting the DD’s! I haven’t gone sleeveless in so long my upper arms were so pasty white. Alas, maybe I feel like my arms don’t look that bad? I was definitely a little self-conscious doing it at first (my upper arms are a major source of self-conscience for me – I don’t have guns of any sort) but after noticing how hot it was I didn’t give a crap. I guess my arms don’t look too bad? I’ll let you be the judge of that.

The race that evening (again, sorry no pics of any quality) was one of the best IndyCar races at Texas ever. Long green flag run, minimal cautions (only two wrecks and a fuel line leak resulting in a fire) and all out good racing. The new aerokits provide for a faster car than the previous iteration, which makes for more exciting racing.

Other random stats: 12 beers and two gallons of water killed, two sandwiches, four pickles all down the hatch as well. Two tubes of Neutrogena Clear Face SPF 55 were totally gone through over the course of the weekend. When it’s that hot and the sun is that intense, I take no chances – I reapply more often than recommended even.

So that’s that! It was a fun time. IndyCar is always an incredible experience and I suggest you see a race live if you can. IMO IndyCar kicks NASCAR’s ass in almost every way (though I do wish they’d implement overtime so a race won’t finish under caution). You’ll enjoy it if you ever are able to.

So that was my weekend. Time to prop my feet up and relax at home base for the rest of the day. I’m tired and a bit sore! Oh well. It was worth it.

EDIT: As per Rachel’s request, a pic of my sushi. LOL!!! Just one of many different varieties I had. What a pretty sight huh?



Song Lyric Sunday 6/10/18 – Badman’s Song

Greetings from No Limits, TX! Taking some time after an exciting DXC Technologies 600 IndyCar Series race at Texas Motor Speedway to bring you this week’s Song Lyric Sunday only about 30 minutes later than normal.

So a song with metaphors. Well, this song has a handful of them woven through the lyrics, and I’m brain dead tonight so this is what you get: “Badman’s Song,” a 1989 song off the album The Seeds of Love (title of which is a metaphor in and of itself) by you-know-who (written by Nicky Holland and Roland Orzabal):

Heard every word that was said that night
When the light of the world put the world to right
Well here’s to the boys back in 628
Where an ear to the wall was a twist of fate
I will shine a blinding light
Through those hearts as black as night
Sticks and stones may break my bones
But as least the seeds of love will be sown
Now once in awhile when I feel no shame
I get down on my knees and I pray for rain
And though the breeze blows gently while I state my case
There’ll be certain men waiting just to scratch my face
Hand on my heart I will make a stand
For the life and the times of the mirror man
In my head there is a mirror
When I’ve been bad, I’ve been wrong
Food for the saints that are quick to judge me
Hope for a Badman
This is the Badman’s Song
Guilt in the frame of the looking-glass
Puts a shine on the mind where reflections pass
Where the jigsaw pieces of a broken man
Try and fit themselves together again
Lies in disguise in the name of trust
Put your head in the sand it will turn to dust !
What’s your problem ? What’s your curse ?
Won’t it make the matter worse ?
In my head…
And they say ” Faith can move move mountains
Fire can cleanse your soul “
Faith can move mountains
But mind over matter won’t you stop all your chatter, no!
I heard every word that was said that night
When the light of the world put the world to right
When I hear soft whispers at the break of day
(I’m in trouble every step of the way)
Sweet talking boys who can do no wrong
When the stories are tall as the day is long
With such a thin drawn between friend and foe
Lord help me now and bless my soul !
Look at yourself, see how you lie
Your hands start shaking and you don’t know why
Look at yourself, see how you lie
Your hands start shaking and you don’t know why
Well there’s food for the saints that are quick to judge me
Hope for a Badman.
Source: Lyrics in video description.

Well that’s all for today. Hopefully I’ll be able to put more thought into next week’s submission. Until then, see ya.