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Showing posts from March, 2020

Governor Andrew Cuomo For President!

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Listening to New York governor Andrew Cuomo now at his daily coronavirus press briefing.  I'm not a New York resident but listening to Governor Cuomo I get more of a sense of what is really going on with the coronavirus pandemic. God knows I don't get that feeling of comfort from Trump's daily clown show of lies, rosy scenarios, and sycophants praising Dear Leader. Trump can't do his MAGA rallies now and is bored so he has substituted his daily coronavirus press briefings for his rallies. Just how useless are his briefings?  Yesterday he had Mike Lindell, the MyPillow guy at the podium. WTF?  Talk about a clown show. So what did the Pillow Guy do? He went off script and praised Dear Leader. See why I don't watch? Speaking of people I can't watch on TV, that would be former Vice President and presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden. God, Joe can't complete a sentence.  He stumbles, mumbles, and trails off. Can you imagine him on the debate stage w

Do I Have The Coronavirus?

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This morning I woke up with my usual congestion in my chest. I've had this respiratory problem for about three years now.  All my life I've had a runny nose. I always had to have tissues available to wipe my nose. However, about three years ago my nasal drip shifted and went to back of my throat. That left me with a condition of mucus building up in my throat that I have to constantly clear during my waking hours.  Last year I went to an ear nose and throat specialist. She examined me (shoved a device right up through my nose to my throat she did) and gave me a diagnosis and a prescription to help break up my daily accumulation of mucus. I now had a new normal.  Anyone around me knows that I am constantly clearing my throat during the day.  A condition which I found annoying in others before I had this condition. Now that I am there, I am more tolerant. Now with the threat of the coronavirus I am extra sensitive to any symptoms I have which mirror the symptoms of th

Science Fiction Movie In Real Time

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Food Lion this morning Bill and I are still self quarantined here at our home.  This morning I went to our grocery store again. This is our only outing. Bill stays in the car while I go into the grocery store. Bill wants to go to Ace Hardware and I want to go to my favorite local nursery. I don't even know if they're open but if they are, we'll hold off for now. I'm trying to minimize our contact with the outside world but I'm not going to totally isolate ourselves here at home. No home delivery for us, yet anyway.  Each time I'm at the store they have upped their safety measures.  This morning the cashier wiped down the conveyor belt after each customer's order is checked. Takes a little longer but worth it to help control the spread of this horrible disease. The store shelves are slowing being filled up but there is still many empty shelves, including my favorite Progresso soup. I was able to get more beef stew meat and artisan bread which I will

Social Distancing

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Checkout line at my grocery store this morning This morning I made another early run to my local supermarket. The past two weeks the many of the shelves have been empty. This morning, it looked like things were getting back to normal. Oh sure, there were still empty shelves but there was chicken and hamburger. And more important my Limeade was there.  I made the run for mushroom. I'm cooking a crock pot beef stew this morning. My beef stews aren't beef stews unless they contain mushrooms. Now maybe some reading this blog will think "He endangered himself JUST to get some mushrooms for his beef stew?"  Uh, yes.  I'm not going to totally isolate myself. I kept my distance. In fact my supermarket even took more precautions. See the sign above about placing our items on the conveyor belt. I waited until the older gentleman finished checking his items. Then when I got to the cashier, whom I have great respect for all cashiers who are putting themselves at risk d

A Real Letter

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Letter I received yesterday Yesterday I received a real letter. Yes, an actual handwritten (in cursive) letter. Not a typed letter and not a sales solicitation but a real letter from a real person.   For those of us a certain age (old), remember when we used to communicate this way? Not that there is anything wrong with the way we communicate today, i.e. this blog posting, but it is sad that a cursive handwritten letter seems to have fallen by the wayside in today's digital world.   I've always been a letter writer. I have save most of the letters I have received over the years. My father, who was always so dismissive of me in other area, actually made me a wooden box to save my letters when I was a teenager and had numerous pen pals. I still have that wooden box in my bedroom closet stuffed to the top with most of those pen pal letters.  Bill convinced me to throw out several hundred of those letters from pen pals when I moved in with him in 1965 but I did manage to

Laid Off

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Mike, my manager at the hotel where I've worked part-time for the past thirteen years as a front desk agent, called me today. I knew why he was calling even before he told me. He called to inform me that I was temporarily being laid off because the hotel was cutting back on staff because of the virus that is spreading like wildfire across the world. He advised me that I could apply for unemployment insurance. At first I said "No, that won't be necessary" but then the more I thought about it I thought "why not?"  I'm losing pay. Although I only work part-time at the hotel, the $12,000 (average) I make a year pays for my trips and helps out with the extra bills here at Casa Tipton-Kelly (which there always seems to be).   The last time I applied for unemployment insurance was when I lost my job at the bank in my hometown in Pennsylvania. I was fired from that job because a new boss came in and when he discovered I was gay, he fired me. Which at tha

North Palm Canyon Drive Palm Springs, California Febraury 16, 2020

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North Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, California February 16, 2020 at the height of the tourist season (and yes, that is Pat in the chartreuse day glow green T-shirt taking his sweater off) Yesterday I saw this picture posted on my Twitter account of North Palm Canyon Drive in Palm Springs, California.  This picture was just taken yesterday, it showed a deserted street. Normally this street would be packed with tourists, April being the height of the season in Palm Springs.  North Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, California yesterday after the governor's proclamation to close all non essential businesses and and public gatherings Last month Pat and I were on this street, which is the main street in downtown Palm Springs. It was so different. Jammed packed with folks seeking the warmth of the sun in the cold month of February. Little did we know that we would be in this dystopian nightmare scenario that we are now. Pat is back in his hometown of Hamilton, Ontario Canad

Shelter In Place

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(Nancy Sinatra Benefit for Plaza Theater Palm Springs California February 16, 2020) California's governor last night issued an order for all residents of California to shelter in place.  So far our governor  hasn't issued a similar order for Delaware residents. But I realized today that Bill and I actually live our everyday lives most of the time sheltering in place. We never go to large gatherings of people, never. The last time I was at a large gathering of people was when I was in Palm Springs with Pat during Modernism Week. One event where we were really packed in was at a fund raiser for the Plaza Theater in downtown Palm Springs. Nancy Sinatra was there with her tow daughters and other celebrities like James Darren. We were packed in that old theater. At times I was a little spooked at how crammed in that building, thoughts going to what if there was a fire and we had to get out?  I don't know if I have the coronavirus, can't get a test here in lower slower De

Trip To Palm Springs Cancelled

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This afternoon I bowed to the inevitable, I cancelled my April trip to Palm Springs. I made this decision with Pat after the news that border crossings by Canadians to the United States are temporarily closing for non essential traffic. Pat getting his condo ready for sale is non essential, on that we agreed. Then later today on the news I heard that Palm Springs itself has ordered residents to shelter in. Case closed. I cancelled my American Airlines reservation for flights to and from Palm Springs. They're crediting my payment back to my credit card.  Actually, I feel relieved. There is just too much going on with this corona virus pandemic. Pat is going to manage getting his condo in Palm Springs spruced up (new floors, painting) for sale. I think it will work out well. No need to be there in person. And of course, this trip to Palm Springs would be nothing like our February trip. Those days are gone folks, probably for a long time. In fact I'm wondering if we can ev

The Stand

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Many years ago I read the Stephen King novel "The Stand". It scared the daylights out of me. This is a description of the fictional horror story that Stephen King, the author of "Carrie" and many other horror stories, which I took from Wikipedia: "The stand presents a breakdown of society after an accidental release of a strain in influenza that has been modified for biological warfare causes an apocalyptic pandemic, killing off more than 99% of the world's population." I just got off FaceTime with Pat, who lives in Hamilton, Ontario Canada. We are/were scheduled to go to Palm Springs next month to prepare Pat's condo for sale. While I was on FaceTime with Pat the news came across that all travel between Canada and the United States would be restricted to "non-essential" travel. I think we can assume that preparation of Pat's Palm Springs condo for sale is "non-essential."  We both still have our airline reservat

Coronavirus Update Here In Delaware

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Yesterday when I went into my 3 PM shift at the hotel I heard the news that the governor of Delaware declared a state of emergency.  As of 8 PM last night, restaurants were limited to take-out and delivery. We had five rooms at the hotel last night. Yes, we're having cancellations because of the coronavirus pandemic but there are still people at the hotel. One of my responsibilities to our guests is to supply restaurant information.  I called around the restaurants and made up a list to pass out to our guests of those restaurants that were converting to take out only. Some were even planning on doing deliveries, which is new. As someone said on the TV yesterday, "We're all in this together."   My co-worker Oz placed our hand sanitizer, which we always use even before this coronavirus threat, right on the counter where the guests check in.  The first guests, an elderly couple (most of our guests are elderly couples) I checked in I nodded towards the hand 

End Of The World?

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Soup shelves at our supermarket yesterday - one of my regular stops Bread shelves yesterday at our supermarket - at least there was some bread Milk refrigerator at our supermarket yesterday The coronavirus pandemic situation continues to worsen.   Schools are closing.  Bars and restaurants are closing.  Trump, and his sycophants continue to lie and paint a rosy picture.  Thank God we still have Dr. Anthony Fauci who, for some reason Trump permits, tells us the truth, this is going to get worse. I visited our local supermarket yesterday and was able to buy some of our necessities. Fortunately for us, I'm a natural hoarder thus I have at least three month's supply of toilet paper. I even have month's supply of hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes. I buy in bulk from BJ's.  Looks like that habit of mine is paying off now. I'm still on for my flight out of Philadelphia to Palm Springs on April 13th. The flight will probably be cancelled this

Thoughts on Coronavirus Pandemic

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Here we are folks on this spring Saturday morning sinking deeper into the Coronavirus pandemic crisis.  Just the latest threat to life as we know it. Look for the movie next year. We survived the Avian Flu, Mad Cow Disease, SARS, Ebola and many other threats to civilization on this planet as we know it. But this one does feels different, concerts are being cancelled.  toilet paper is disappearing from the shelves of stores. This latest End of the World As We Know It is different.  Of course I'm not going to let this blog post go through without acknowledging the absolute total failure of Our Dear Leader (Trump) to prepare us for this pandemic. From disbanding the pandemic office in the White House to the failure of testing for the virus, I don't know where to start. Trump lies like the rest of us breath. He's been lying his whole life (and getting away with it), he knows no other way.  Let's just acknowledge Trump only cares about himself and getting reelected

Random Thoughts On An Early Spring Day 2020

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Our driveway this morning after I returned from my early morning walk - daffodils in bloom - yes, that is my shadow "What's rolling through your head this morning Ron?"   See how I began this post without using a personal pronoun? I also didn't begin with using the useless word "So", mainly because I fear a Raybeard slap down. So (whoops, there I go) here is what is roiling (not a misspelling) through my seventy-eight year old brain this morning: I'm glad Joe Biden did so well in the Democratic primaries last night. Sure, Uncle Joe is boring and has difficulty completing sentences and his speeches sometimes meander off but he can beat Trump for the presidency.  What about Bernie "Free Stuff" Sanders?  I never was a fan of the Angry Old Man Shouting campaign offering free stuff to his cult like following of youngsters who want their college debt paid off.  Now all Joe has to do is stay disciplined and give speeches like he did last n

Back To Palm Springs Next Month

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The Intrepid Duo, Pat and Ron in Palm Springs CA February 2020 Yes, you read that right, Pat and I are going back to Palm Springs next month.  We're leaving April 13th and staying for ten days, returning April 23rd.  Pat is selling his condo. His two year tenant is moving April 12th. Pat and I will be preparing his condo for sale.   We'll be staying at his condo which should be interesting since it won't have any furniture. That shouldn't be a problem though.  I stayed in my present home for months without furniture. All I had was an air mattress and some lawn furniture. That's what we'll do when we're staying in Pat's condo, cleaning it up and getting it ready for sale. I made my airline reservation last night. What a difference in the price!  For my last trip in February I paid over $900 for a round trip to Palm Springs. This time the round trip was only $398. Of course I added upgrades like a seat with more leg room bringing the total cos

Daylight Savings Time 2020

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That time of year again folks, turn the clocks one hour ahead of "spring ahead!"  Seems like we just did a "fall back."  I don't know about you but to me this constant changing of clocks annoys me. Perhaps it's because we have so many clocks, thirteen in my bedroom and bathroom alone. Sure, I acknowledge that I have more clocks than the average bear (about sixty in the manse at last count) but this constant changing. We have two clocks that are set high on the wall that we need to bring out the ladder to change. One of us is eventually going to fall changing those clocks. There is good news on the horizon though. Delaware is set to put into law to make Daylight Savings Time permanent.  Hallelujah and amen!    Now that makes sense. But first it has to coordinate with our neighboring state Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and even New York.  I feel confident this time next year we will have a permanent Daylight Savings Time. Just makes a lot

Martini Kings Shag Store Palm Springs California February 2020

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Every year when we're in Palm Springs one of our must stops is at the Shag Store. Pat introduced me to Shag, Josh Aigle. If you're not familiar with his work, you would probably recognize it if you saw his pictures.  During Modernism Week Shag holds two events on a Saturday to introduce new Shag paintings.  Pat and I were able to attend both events this year. This is a video of the Martini Kings (playing "The Lady Is A Tramp"), the live entertainment Shag offers during his events. Also free drinks are available, thus the long line outside waiting.  Pat has purchased several Shag products as have I. They're expensive but worth it to me and Pat. We get a lot of enjoyment from what we purchase from  prints, lamps, pins and this year a Shag shirt.  A Shag event, just another reason for visiting Palm Springs in the winter during Modernism Week! Pat finds his happy place relaxing at the Shag store with a vodka cucumber cocktail.  Pat relaxing at

Getting Ready For The End?

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With the coronavirus fears sweeping our nation and the world at this time, I'm thinking "Is this the end?"   Personally I don't feel an immediate threat other than my stock market portfolio that is sinking. Even though I don't have that much in the stock market it is all that I have.  It's so frustrating to see it sink because it just hit new highs. Seems whenever my portfolio is looking good, something happens that punctures that Balloon of Hope.   Am I concerned about my personal health? Of course I am. I am taking all the precautions such as washing my hands and avoiding handshakes. But I'm not panicking, actually I don't panic. It's not in my nature. I just weigh my choices and try to make the best and safest decisions to survive.  What I've heard is that the people who are most susceptible to the serious effects of the coronavirus are old folks like me. I remember the last time I had a bad cold or the flu (still not sure what it wa

Dancing In The Streets of Palm Springs California

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While walking on the main street (North Palm Canyon Drive) of Palm Springs during our annual visit, the live music was so compelling that I just had to put a few moves on in public. Of course being the shy, retiring guy that I am I could only do a minute or two before I handing my iPhone over to Pat to really show us how to dance.  Always so much fun to visit Palm Springs, time to let my hair (or what is left of it) down. I love to dance. Of course I realize I "Elaine Dance" but hey, I enjoy dancing none-the-less. Watch out for next year. I really plan to let loose. 

James Lipton

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When Pat and I were in Palm Springs last month, I had a chance encounter with James Lipton, the longtime host of "Actors Studio".   Pat and I were having lunch at our favorite vegan eatery, Nature's Cafe in Palm Springs. While I was waiting for Pat to collect our order (no waitress/waiter service) I noticed that James Lipton had entered the restaurant with friends.  Pat waiting for our order at Nature's Cafe, Mr. Lipton and his friends came in that door to the right a few minutes after I took this picture. I didn't take a picture of them, respecting they privacy. I mentioned to Pat "There's James Lipton."  Pat said "Who is James Lipton?"  I told him that James Lipton was the longtime host of the PBS program Actors Studio.  Pat wasn't aware of that program. Pat and I have a lot in common but I know a way lot more of celebrity, both Hollywood and New York, than Pat does. But then Pat knows way more music groups than I know.