Bring Me That Horizon

Welcome to jennyweber dot com


Home of Jenny the Pirate



This will go better if you

check your expectations at the door.


We're not big on logic

but there's no shortage of irony.


 Nice is different than good.


Oh and ...

I flunked charm school.

So what.

Can't write anything.

= Jennifer =

Causing considerable consternation
to many fine folk since 1957

Pepper and me ... Seattle 1962



Belay That!

This blog does not contain and its author will not condone profanity, crude language, or verbal abuse. Commenters, you are welcome to speak your mind but do not cuss or I will delete either the word or your entire comment, depending on my mood. Continued use of bad words or inappropriate sentiments will result in the offending individual being banned, after which they'll be obliged to walk the plank. Thankee for your understanding and compliance.

= Jenny the Pirate =

Hoist The Colors


I am a Blue Star Mother




Insist on yourself; never imitate.

Your own gift you can present

every moment

with the cumulative force

of a whole life’s cultivation;

but of the adopted talent of another

you have only an extemporaneous

half possession.

That which each can do best,

none but his Maker can teach him.

= Ralph Waldo Emerson =



The Black Velvet Coat

In The Market, As It Were






Contributor to

American Cemetery

published by Kates-Boylston

A Pistol With One Shot

Ecstatically shooting everything in sight using my beloved Nikon D3100 with AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm 1:3.5-5.6G VR kit lens and AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 G prime lens.

Also capturing outrageous beauty left and right with my Nikon D7000 blissfully married to my Nikkor 85mm f/1.4D AF prime glass. Don't be jeal.

And then there was the Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-200mm f:3.5-5.6G ED VR II zoom. We're done here.

Dying Is A Day Worth Living For

I am a taphophile

Word. Photo Jennifer Weber 2010

Great things are happening at

Find A Grave

If you don't believe me, click the pics.


Dying is a wild night

and a new road.

Emily Dickinson



When I am gone

Please remember me

 As a heartfelt laugh,

 As a tenderness.

 Hold fast to the image of me

When my soul was on fire,

The light of love shining

Through my eyes.

Remember me when I was singing

And seemed to know my way.

Remember always

When we were together

And time stood still.

Remember most not what I did,

Or who I was;

Oh please remember me

For what I always desired to be:

A smile on the face of God.

David Robert Brooks



 Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.


Keep To The Code








You Want To Find This
The Promise Of Redemption

Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not;

But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.

But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:

In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake.

For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;

Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;

Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.

For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.

So then death worketh in us, but life in you.

We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I BELIEVED, AND THEREFORE HAVE I SPOKEN; we also believe, and therefore speak;

Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you.

For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.

For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.

For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;

While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

II Corinthians 4

Freedom is a fragile thing and is never more than one generation away from extinction. It is not ours by inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, for it comes only once to a people. Those who have known freedom and then lost it, have never known it again.

~ Ronald Reagan

Photo Jennifer Weber 2010

Not Without My Effects

My Compass Works Fine

The Courage Of Our Hearts




Daft Like Jack

 "I can name fingers and point names ..."

And We'll Sing It All The Time
  • Elements Series: Fire
    Elements Series: Fire
    by Peter Kater
  • Danny Wright Healer of Hearts
    Danny Wright Healer of Hearts
    by Danny Wright
  • Grace
    Old World Records
  • The Hymns Collection (2 Disc Set)
    The Hymns Collection (2 Disc Set)
    Stone Angel Music, Inc.
  • Always Near - A Romantic Collection
    Always Near - A Romantic Collection
    Real Music
  • Copia
    Temporary Residence Ltd.
  • The Poet: Romances for Cello
    The Poet: Romances for Cello
    Spring Hill Music
  • Nightfall
    Narada Productions, Inc.
  • Rachmaninoff plays Rachmaninoff
    Rachmaninoff plays Rachmaninoff
  • The Pity Party: A Mean-Spirited Diatribe Against Liberal Compassion
    The Pity Party: A Mean-Spirited Diatribe Against Liberal Compassion
    by William Voegeli
  • The Art of Memoir
    The Art of Memoir
    by Mary Karr
  • The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems
    The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems
    by Emily Dickinson
  • Among The Dead: My Years in The Port Mortuary
    Among The Dead: My Years in The Port Mortuary
    by John W. Harper
  • On Writing Well, 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction
    On Writing Well, 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction
    by William Zinsser
  • Green Hell: How Environmentalists Plan to Control Your Life and What You Can Do to Stop Them
    Green Hell: How Environmentalists Plan to Control Your Life and What You Can Do to Stop Them
    by Steven Milloy
  • The Amateur
    The Amateur
    by Edward Klein
  • Hating Jesus: The American Left's War on Christianity
    Hating Jesus: The American Left's War on Christianity
    by Matt Barber, Paul Hair
  • In Praise of Stay-at-Home Moms
    In Praise of Stay-at-Home Moms
    by Dr. Laura Schlessinger
  • Where Are They Buried (Revised and Updated): How Did They Die? Fitting Ends and Final Resting Places of the Famous, Infamous, and Noteworthy
    Where Are They Buried (Revised and Updated): How Did They Die? Fitting Ends and Final Resting Places of the Famous, Infamous, and Noteworthy
    by Tod Benoit
  • Bird Brains: The Intelligence of Crows, Ravens, Magpies, and Jays
    Bird Brains: The Intelligence of Crows, Ravens, Magpies, and Jays
    by Candace Savage
  • Gifts of the Crow: How Perception, Emotion, and Thought Allow Smart Birds to Behave Like Humans
    Gifts of the Crow: How Perception, Emotion, and Thought Allow Smart Birds to Behave Like Humans
    by John Marzluff Ph.D., Tony Angell
  • Righteous Indignation: Excuse Me While I Save the World!
    Righteous Indignation: Excuse Me While I Save the World!
    by Andrew Breitbart
  • 11 Principles of a Reagan Conservative
    11 Principles of a Reagan Conservative
    by Paul Kengor
  • Mind of the Raven: Investigations and Adventures with Wolf-Birds
    Mind of the Raven: Investigations and Adventures with Wolf-Birds
    by Bernd Heinrich
  • Talking Heads: The Vent Haven Portraits
    Talking Heads: The Vent Haven Portraits
    by Matthew Rolston
  • Mortuary Confidential: Undertakers Spill the Dirt
    Mortuary Confidential: Undertakers Spill the Dirt
    by Todd Harra, Ken McKenzie
  • America's Steadfast Dream
    America's Steadfast Dream
    by E. Merrill Root
  • Good Dog, Carl : A Classic Board Book
    Good Dog, Carl : A Classic Board Book
    by Alexandra Day
  • Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation
    Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation
    by Lynne Truss
  • The American Way of Death Revisited
    The American Way of Death Revisited
    by Jessica Mitford
  • In Six Days : Why Fifty Scientists Choose to Believe in Creation
    In Six Days : Why Fifty Scientists Choose to Believe in Creation
    Master Books
  • Architects of Ruin: How big government liberals wrecked the global economy---and how they will do it again if no one stops them
    Architects of Ruin: How big government liberals wrecked the global economy---and how they will do it again if no one stops them
    by Peter Schweizer
  • Grave Influence: 21 Radicals and Their Worldviews That Rule America From the Grave
    Grave Influence: 21 Radicals and Their Worldviews That Rule America From the Grave
    by Brannon Howse
  • Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadow: The Tragic Courtship and Marriage of Paul Laurence Dunbar and Alice Ruth Moore
    Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadow: The Tragic Courtship and Marriage of Paul Laurence Dunbar and Alice Ruth Moore
    by Eleanor Alexander
Easy On The Goods
  • Waiting for
    Waiting for "Superman"
    starring Geoffrey Canada, Michelle Rhee
  • The Catered Affair (Remastered)
    The Catered Affair (Remastered)
    starring Bette Davis, Ernest Borgnine, Debbie Reynolds, Barry Fitzgerald, Rod Taylor
  • Bernie
    starring Jack Black, Shirley MacLaine, Matthew McConaughey
  • Remember the Night
    Remember the Night
    starring Barbara Stanwyck, Fred MacMurray, Beulah Bondi, Elizabeth Patterson, Sterling Holloway
  • The Ox-Bow Incident
    The Ox-Bow Incident
    starring Henry Fonda, Dana Andrews, Mary Beth Hughes, Anthony Quinn, William Eythe
  • The Bad Seed
    The Bad Seed
    starring Nancy Kelly, Patty McCormack, Henry Jones, Eileen Heckart, Evelyn Varden
  • Shadow of a Doubt
    Shadow of a Doubt
    starring Teresa Wright, Joseph Cotten, Macdonald Carey, Patricia Collinge, Henry Travers
  • The More The Merrier
    The More The Merrier
    starring Jean Arthur, Joel McCrea, Charles Coburn, Bruce Bennett, Ann Savage
  • Act of Valor
    Act of Valor
    starring Alex Veadov, Roselyn Sanchez, Nestor Serrano
  • Deep Water
    Deep Water
    starring Tilda Swinton, Donald Crowhurst, Jean Badin, Clare Crowhurst, Simon Crowhurst
  • Sunset Boulevard
    Sunset Boulevard
    starring William Holden, Gloria Swanson, Erich Von Stroheim, Nancy Olson, Fred Clark
  • Penny Serenade
    Penny Serenade
    starring Cary Grant, Irene Dunne, Edgar Buchanan, Beulah Bondi
  • Double Indemnity
    Double Indemnity
    starring Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck, Edward G. Robinson, Porter Hall, Jean Heather
  • Ayn Rand and the Prophecy of Atlas Shrugged
    Ayn Rand and the Prophecy of Atlas Shrugged
    starring Gary Anthony Williams
  • Fat Sick & Nearly Dead
    Fat Sick & Nearly Dead
    Passion River
  • It Happened One Night (Remastered Black & White)
    It Happened One Night (Remastered Black & White)
    starring Clark Gable, Claudette Colbert
  • Stella Dallas
    Stella Dallas
    starring Barbara Stanwyck, John Boles, Anne Shirley, Barbara O'Neil, Alan Hale
  • The Iron Lady
    The Iron Lady
    starring Meryl Streep, Jim Broadbent, Harry Lloyd, Anthony Head, Alexandra Roach
  • Wallace & Gromit: The Complete Collection (4 Disc Set)
    Wallace & Gromit: The Complete Collection (4 Disc Set)
    starring Peter Sallis, Anne Reid, Sally Lindsay, Melissa Collier, Sarah Laborde
  • The Red Balloon (Released by Janus Films, in association with the Criterion Collection)
    The Red Balloon (Released by Janus Films, in association with the Criterion Collection)
    starring Red Balloon
  • Stalag 17 (Special Collector's Edition)
    Stalag 17 (Special Collector's Edition)
    starring William Holden, Don Taylor, Otto Preminger, Robert Strauss, Harvey Lembeck
  • The Major and the Minor (Universal Cinema Classics)
    The Major and the Minor (Universal Cinema Classics)
    starring Ginger Rogers, Ray Milland
  • My Dog Skip
    My Dog Skip
    starring Frankie Muniz, Diane Lane, Luke Wilson, Kevin Bacon
  • Sabrina
    starring Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn, William Holden, Walter Hampden, John Williams
  • The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer
    The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer
    starring Cary Grant, Myrna Loy, Shirley Temple, Rudy Vallee, Ray Collins
  • Pirates of the Caribbean - The Curse of the Black Pearl (Two-Disc Collector's Edition)
    Pirates of the Caribbean - The Curse of the Black Pearl (Two-Disc Collector's Edition)
    starring Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightley, Jack Davenport
  • Now, Voyager (Keepcase)
    Now, Voyager (Keepcase)
    starring Bette Davis, Paul Henreid, Claude Rains, Gladys Cooper, John Loder
  • The Trip To Bountiful
    The Trip To Bountiful
  • Hold Back the Dawn [DVD] Charles Boyer; Olivia de Havilland; Paulette Goddard
    Hold Back the Dawn [DVD] Charles Boyer; Olivia de Havilland; Paulette Goddard
That Dog Is Never Going To Move



Columbia's Finest Chihuahua

Simple. Easy To Remember.

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Chico, don't be discouraged. Deo Vindice!

Let me begin with Mort Rainey's immortal words to his soon-to-be-pushing-up-daisies pooch, Chico:

I didn't steal it.

Because I didn't. But I know who did.

And my mom won't care if I reveal her the identity of said pilferer.

She's cool that way.

Anyway I've no room to judge since I came perilously, dangerously close to doing the very same thing, and it wasn't all that long ago.

Allow me to elaborate.

One extremely hot day last summer found me reporting a deposition in a small South Carolina town.

I forget which one.

Naturally I had my camera with me in case I saw an interesting cemetery on the way home.

And naturally, I did.

So I pulled over and parked my car and got out. The place was deserted.

Stopping every so often in order to stand, pelican-like, scratching first one ankle and then the other with the toes of the opposite foot, on account of millions of gnats were lurking in the grass just waiting to pounce upon said part of my anatomy (insects love me), I tramped around a peaceful old church cemetery for half an hour or more.

Now, perhaps before we proceed I should give you some backstory.

All over the South there are graves of Confederate soldiers.

A stunning accessory to many of these graves is the cast-iron Southern Cross of Honor.

Photo Jennifer Weber 2010I love those things.

And I cannot explain it but on this particular day when I was in that church cemetery alone, I had an overwhelming desire to ...

... well, take one.

There's no other way to put it. I wanted to pull one of those crosses out of the earth, stow it in my car, and drive away.

In my defense, I wasn't tempted to remove a Southern Cross of Honor out of the ground from in front of an actual tombstone. In some cemeteries the crosses don't even seem to be attached to any particular grave; they just stick up here and there, randomly.

I had my eye on one of those. It wasn't standing all the way at attention but leaned back, tired. Tired of marking the sad spot.

And my reasoning was, who would miss it if I took it?

I went so far as to touch and wiggle the hot heaviness of the iron, in order to determine how willing it might be to come along.

But in the end I couldn't do it. My conscience's inner volume had escalated from a nag to a shout. The cross didn't belong to me. What would I do with it anyway?

I left carrying only my camera and about eighty-five bug bites.

Eventually I related that whole story to my mother, who also lives in South Carolina.

"I stole one. I gave it to Dodie," she said without even blushing.

I was speechless for at least thirty seconds. That may be a record.

I guess the apple does fall somewhat far from the tree. At least in some ways.

Now, Dodie is my beloved uncle. I was born when he was only ten years old and we've always been friends.

He is a stellar artist who paints and sculpts professionally as Dody Sandifer.

I am proud to say he reads this blog.

My mother is the eldest of the four Sandifer children and Dodie is the youngest.

Brother and sister are possessed of an identical offbeat joie de vivre, if you know what I mean. Partners in good Louisiana cooking, strong-coffee drinking, funny-story telling and Southern-style reminiscing, plus various and sundry crimes of the quasi-innocent sort.

Including cemetery theft and transporting stolen goods across state lines, apparently.

Anyway, to my mother I expressed no small amount of envy for the Southern Cross of Honor she had been so bold as to purloin and haul down to Louisiana for Dodie.

She just laughed. "You should have gotten your own," she said.

Okay Mom. I'll remember that for next time.

Fast forward and back up a few days to last Friday. I was in Greenville for a job and I tooled over to Mom's place afterward for a cup of Joe.

As I walked up the front steps I noticed a Southern Cross of Honor propped against the porch railing.

Hmmm, I thought.

My mother met me at the door. "Did you see your cross?" she asked without preamble.

"My cross?" I said.

Turns out Mom and her sister went to Louisiana a few weeks ago to visit their brothers.

And in a conversation with Dodie it came up that I coveted his stolen Southern Cross of Honor.

So he went and got it and told my mother to give it to me.

Now it's mine.

Yee hah!

The cross measures twenty inches tall by nearly twelve inches wide and weighs twelve pounds.

On the front side are the letters CSA (for Confederate States of America) and the Confederate flag.

On the back are cast the dates 1861 and 1865, and the Latin phrase Deo Vindice.

God will vindicate.

That's what I'm talking about, y'all.

*insert Rebel yell*

The perfect ending is, I now have my very own cast-iron Southern Cross of Honor. Which I promise to cherish.

Even if I admit to having come by it somewhat ... er, dishonorably.

I'm not sorry.

Deo Vindice.


And now for a tug on the old heartstrings

TG and Erica a/k/a "Little Boo" ... Homecoming, circa 2003In the late '80s, Kodak ran a TV commercial that without fail sent me running for the nearest box of Kleenex.

Father-daughter stuff nearly always gets to me like a swift blow to the solar plexus.

My dad was never in my life.

By the time I got married he'd been in his grave for over a decade.

Not to be Debbie Downer or anything!

Seriously ... this is meant to be a happy post.

So anyway, several times in the past few years I've searched on YouTube for the Kodak ad I liked so well that back in the day, I actually taped it on a VHS cassette.

Which I cannot find.

Never able to locate the ad on YouTube no matter how many search terms I used, I gave up.

Until today, when something I saw on another blog prompted me to try again. Just in case.

Yes! Yes, I am excruciatingly aware of the definition of insanity.

Notwithstanding, for the umpteenth time I typed into the YouTube I-double-dog-dare-you-to-find-what-you-are-looking-for line: kodak daddy's little girl.

And hit enter.

And gasped, and ran for the tissues.

Voila! Pay dirt. Here you go.

Oh and, no. No, Erica's not engaged. I wish. So does she.


Who said non sequitur was a bad thing

So I'm enjoying a Twitter session a couple weeks ago, relaxing in my favorite chair, simultaneously watching TV.

That way I'll have more tweet fodder than even I know what to do with.

Don't all tweeps worth their salt approach it thus?

So as to stay all current, cutting edge, relevant, dynamic, et cetera?

At any rate I'm very absorbed, waxing loquacious on first one topic and then another, when lo and behold I get a mention.

Meaning, someone responded to one of my many pithy tweets which are uniformly packed with the wit, wisdom, snark and sarcasm my public have come to expect.

Now, if you've ever opined much on the Internet, you know how quickly and easily one can misunderstand and be misunderstood.

I'm used to it.

Even so, the reply I received took me aback for several seconds.

At first glance it was difficult for me to believe anyone in their right mind could take umbrage at my tweet.

This is what I said:

Everybody's all up in arms about Casey the babykiller's release but thousands of unborn children die each day & nobody turns a hair.

I was retweeted by @cessna1967, @ConniePrays, @Audgapanaudge, @00_jackie, @BadCat_CA_2, @sawlawn, and a few others whose links I cannot provide because they cuss.

They got me and clearly agreed. Good people.

I don't suppose anyone besides Casey Anthony and her parents will ever really know how Caylee met her tragic demise.

Well ... them and God. He welcomed Caylee with open arms and helped her to lay her little burden down.

He knows.

All I know is that I'm sick to death of hearing about it. I am beyond bored with the sordid excuses and the overweening hype and the nauseating overkill, pardon the expression.

Casey, go away already. Go ahead and do whatever it is you're going to do. Personally I hope the first thing you do is get sterilized.

No more babies for you, 'k? There's a creepy twisted little murderess.

But back to my Casey-related Twitter mention.

It went like this:

Not everybody. Some think it's non of our business and the family needs privacy. Can't imagine what they r going thru


Sorry but I beg to differ, and I said so.

I answered:

Nor can I imagine what they're going thru. I've never killed a child or covered up the death of a child.

Thinking that was not a bad comeback, I figured we were done.

Until I thought of something else.

To wit:

Also, taxpayers helped pay for her defense. I'd say that makes it our business, although I myself have heard enough.

Then I closed my laptop. A few days went by before I logged back on to Twitter.

I checked my mentions and saw I had a reply from Casey's buddy.

His tweet to me contained, not a retort, rejoinder, or rebuke, but only a link containing the term caseyresearch.

Oh no, I thought. This guy is in the tank for Casey Anthony and he's trying to convince me of her innocence! I don't have time for this nonsense.

But he wasn't. Turns out he's good people too. VERY good people.

Click here to see what he sent me.


I like it. I fail to see the connection to Casey Anthony but I like it very much indeed.

And Bob's your uncle, I got me a new and very inspiring laptop desktop background.

And I wanted to share it with you.

Take! Use! Disseminate! Distribute! Encourage others to do the same!

A picture is worth a thousand words.

And if you wish to express gratitude, don't thank me. Thank the fine conservative gentleman known on Twitter as @WmCraigBarnard.

He's a little to the left of me concerning Casey Anthony, but we'll forgive him just this once.


Milking it

OK so I actually observed this event -- if you can call it that -- several months ago but I'm just now getting around to ranting blogging about it.

Yes! There exists a backlog of diatribes!

I know that makes your Monday.

To set the stage as it were, I was at Wal-Mart. In the checkout line, to be specific. I was second in a two-customer queue.

The young female ahead of me had no more than ten items in her cart so I was optimistic in hopes of a speedy transaction.

Said lady was clearly what in politically-correct parlance is now known as a Latina.

Read: She was Mexican.

Which is fine. I have nothing against Mexican people. Well, I have a few things against some of them. If that bothers you right out of the gate, please remember you click out the same way you clicked in.

Hasta luego!

However if you are curious as to what I have against select numbers of Mexican people, keep reading. You know I'll be unfailingly candid if not unnecessarily brief.

Included in the front-seat part of the Mexican lady's rolling canasta was a toddler of the male persuasion. Cute little guy. My remarkable powers of perception informed me he was her son.

The mother spoke incessantly -- albeit softy -- to the muchachito in Spanish. In fact, judging merely from what I heard during the ocho-or-so minutes I was in her presence, the woman had little or no command of English.

Bear with me here and hang on tight as I jump to the conclusion that the lady most likely does not have a job and, even if she does, is not paying income tax like, say, me.

And since we've gone that far, I'm going to come right out and say it: I profiled her on the spot as an illegal alien. Stay with me now. Fasten your sombrero.

If she is married (there was no wedding ring), I'll bet you one of my pirate posters (not my newest, though … not the one from On Stranger Tides, don't touch that one) that the father of her child -- even if he is in the picture, and if he is her husband, and if he is in fact employed -- is also an illegal alien and also neglects to pay Uncle Sam his unfair share.

Before you drop your chalupa let me point out that I am not a bigoted racist. Far from it. After all I own a Chihuahua.

(Mexicanine should be a word, don't you think? Let's make it a word.)

I believe any foreign-born person who qualifies per our immigration laws to enter this country legally has the right to save up their pesos -- or yen or rubles or francs or rupees or zloty or dinar or shekels or shillings or what have you -- and emigrate to the United States of America.

Once here, without giving any hierba time to grow under their feet, they should apply for citizenship through proper channels, obtain a work permit, get a job, begin learning English, memorize every syllable of the Star Spangled Banner and the Pledge of Allegiance, practice singing and reciting both with great zeal, take a nighttime civics class, absorb some important dates and events in our history, and generally figure out the lay of the land to which they aspire to belong permanently, with all the considerable rights and privileges appertaining thereto.

Everything all law-abiding, above-board, copacetic, according to Hoyle, entered into soberly and with appropriate humility and gratitude that what is still the most honor-worthy country that ever has or ever will exist on planet Earth, would open its golden door to you.

But back to the Mexican lady in question. To quote John Adams: Facts are stubborn things.

And the fact is, employed or unemployed, married or single, legal or illegal -- regardless of whether I'm correct as touching all or part of the above -- this woman is on welfare.

How do I know?

Uhm, let's see. I watched as she paid for her groceries with WIC and food stamps.

That was my tipoff. Although in all fairness I must point out that I'm pretty swift on the uptake, especially on days that end in y.

Because it took the Wal-Mart cashier longer to make that transaction than it would if she'd been handed, say, cash or a check or plastic, I had time to study the items the Mexican lady had placed on the conveyor belt.

And study I unabashedly and unapologetically did.

After all, I was helping to pay for them so I wondered what we were getting.

That's when I saw it.

Like most people when they go to the store, the Mexican lady had grabbed some milk.

Now, when you approach the tall glass-doored cases in the back of the store, there are a plethora of dairy choices.

Rather a staggering range, truth be told.

So I keep it simple. Because I do not wish to pay a penny more for milk -- or anything else -- than I have to, on account of TG and I work hard for every dollar we earn, I always pick up the cheapest milk available.

Which is without exception the store brand. In this case, hovering around three dollars and thirty cents a gallon, give or take.

But it wasn't Great Value milk I saw on the conveyor belt with the rest of the Mexican lady's groceries.

It was Coburg milk.

Which costs fully twice what generic GV leche goes for.

Coburg milk is the priciest on any shelf in any store in the State of South Carolina.

And the Mexican lady hadn't even seen fit to purchase a whole gallon; she'd reached for the sixty-four-ounce size.

Which costs even more per ounce than the gallon size. I checked.

So let me get this straight: I go to the store with money to spend that I earned and I buy the least expensive milk available.

(By the way, you don't have to point out that I'm free to buy the Coburg milk. And that under capitalism, Coburg is free to demand whatever the market will bear. I know that! Don't think I don't. But something in me rebels at the thought of paying nearly six dollars for a gallon of milk.)

(After all are Coburg cows issuing the moo juice through gold-plated udders? Is cerebral reading of existential philosophy or Shakespearean sonnets piped into their milking stalls on the theory that it causes them to give more valuable milk? Do Coburg cows feed on grain and nectar of the dairy gods? What justifies the champagne prices?)

Mexican lady, illegal alien, unemployed, on welfare, goes to the  store and buys the most expensive milk available.

And "pays" with government-issued (read: taxpayer-funded) food stamps and WIC.

On my next trip to Wal-Mart I made it a point to eyeball the little curvy shelf edge that holds the price stickers and related informational signage beneath the milk choices.

Under the Great Value milk? The once-red-and-white WIC sticker is old, gouged, blistering, wrinkled, defaced, and faded nearly as white as the milk itself.

Under the Coburg dairy products? The WIC stickers are brand-new and vibrant red. If you're packing WIC coupons I imagine the Coburg dairy delights cry out to you in delicious creamy voices, beckon to you with cool milky hands: Pick us! Pick us!

And why wouldn't you, if you didn't have to part with the outrageous sticker price offered to those of us who are actually paying the freight?

Just so you know, that wasn't the only thing in the Mexican lady's food order that caught my eye and set me off.

For the pint-sized heir she was buying a carton of individually-bottled Dan-O-Nino kiddie drinks.

OK I really, really do know this is technically none of my business and borders (pun intended) on the tedious but honestly, whatever happened to having a container of Hershey's chocolate syrup on hand to squirt into your child's milk if they wanted it a different color?

When I was a kid that's how we got by. And were glad to get it.

If you're accepting welfare should you really be buying high-priced, overly-processed, sticky-sweet, gimmicky beverages your kid doesn't need, just for the sake of convenience or indulgence?

I hear you. Taking it down a peg. Inhaling deeply and counting slowly.

Uno, dos, tres, cuatro, cinco, seis, siete, ocho, nueve ...


You can rich me true

A particularly dingy dingbat found its way into my Yahoo! mail spam box.

For some reason this doesn't happen to me all that often, although other folks seem to be plagued with these sorts of unwelcome cyber-missives.

Hence, it is blogworthy, if not strictly original, for me to parse this one out for my eager audience.

At any rate it'll have to do on a day when the already-triple-digit temperature is shooting for 102 actual, 110 index, and I'm battling hot-weather-induced ennui on a grand scale.

The cicadas in the trees are playing their belly castanets at such a volume I can hear the dry fever-pitch clacking through the closed windows, even with the air conditioning set to snowball and the draperies pulled tight to add an extra layer of interior cool.

Time to lay low.

I don't know how I happened to see the email -- catchily and cleverly entitled HELLO MY DEAR -- as I do not often check my spam box.

But see it (and read it) I did:

Hello dear
My name is favour awad
I saw your profile at find a grave and it is very interesting i will like to have you as friend in friendship distance,age,colour does not matter but what matters is love without lies cheating you can rich me true my e_mail ID at favourawad at hotmail dot com for more introductions and exchange of pictures waiting to hear from you soonest

First I read favour award -- like, as if someone were awarding me with the blessing of their favor -- but then I noticed the glaring omission of an r.


I'm assuming the author is male. Just go with me on this.

Saw my profile at find a grave and it is very interesting? That's creepy. Unless you are a fellow taphophile and contributor, stay off my Find A Grave profile page, you ... you presumptuous weirdo.

Find A Grave is a site for the bereaved and the only thing of which you appear to be bereft (well, besides the ability to practice a modicum of Internet propriety) is the gift of punctuation.

He would like to have me as friend in friendship. That's handy because I never have gotten the hang of functioning as either a friend in enmity or an enemy in friendship.

But no thanks all the same.

Despite your earnest declaration that distance,age,colour does not matter but what matters is love without lies cheating, I must disagree.

Distance, age, color (forgive me but once again I am compelled to drop the fruity unnecessary u) -- and by that I am assuming you mean, since we live on different continents, are almost certainly decades apart in age, and I'm guessing are not of the same ethnic persuasion -- do not matter to you?

Okay. I will not argue. It's too hot to argue. But your almost-point is moot because another important thing does matter.

I am married.

And you don't even know me. Ergo there cannot be more introductions because there have been no introductions.

Nor will there be.

So I'd say it's a non-starter.

Next I am told you can rich me true my e_mail. Really? True your email? How taughtful.

Let me tink tat true and perhaps tich you someting in the process.

*tink tink tink*

Who am I kidding? I wasn't even close to taking him up on that offer.

I'm not tat bored.

Even so, the prospect of an exchange of pictures was mightily tempting.

Ehhhh, no. Upon tinking it true, I decided I'd better not.

But if I were to send him a photo of me, I do believe I'd send this one. At least then he'd know I'm photogenic.

And friendly.

~ Happy Friday ~