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Sometimes Greenstein Didn’t Lie

April 16, 2018 Leave a comment

I want to make it clear, before I tell the story, that Greenstein is a very good man. He’s eccentric as Hell, and a gentle giant with strong moral values. The only problem with Greenstein is… he’s liar.

He doesn’t lie for any nefarious reasons. It seems like he reads something in a magazine, and when one visits with him, he regales all in his audience with awesome tales of financial adventure, engineering adventure, and medical adventure. It depends what’s in the news, and what he last read.

He sometimes told stories of unique mishaps, like when he was driving a stock car at a race, and his steering came loose. He claimed he went through the guard rail at the end of the straight and into a wall. The car was ruined, and Greenstein needed a metal plate in his head. It might not be true, because that’s Greenstein, but it certainly isn’t harmful to anyone.

Greenstein was such a sweet guy, we never challenged his stories. Even when he told us he was part of a team that is going to raise a treasure ship off the bottom of the ocean, we acted impressed, and he was happy.

On another occasion, he told us he had a contract to do some underwater welding on a landmark installation that stands on iron stilts offshore on a lake. Again, no reason to argue, ‘cause that’s Greenstein.

He said he had opened a bank in the Cayman Islands, and it’s doing great. It was always like that with Greenstein, but he was a good friend and totally trustworthy. He told us he’d built a Harley-Davidson motorcycle in his back yard. It’s possible, I guess.

I was visiting a speed shop for some parts. The guy saw my Jewish-sounding name, and asked if I knew Greenstein, as I was in a speed shop he used. I said I knew him, and the guy began to regale me with a story about when he saw Greenstein go through a guard rail and needed a metal plate in his head. So… it seems Greenstein sometimes tells weird but interesting stories that are true.

I opened the Daily Star one day, and took out the second section. There on the front page, second section, was a half- page photo of Greenstein with his old-fashioned, hard-hat diving rig over a caption that read, “Underwater welder to shore up Ontario Place”.

I visited Greenstein one summer afternoon. We went out to his back yard, where he was growing beans. Right there in his back yard, an older model Harley-Davidson motorcycle sat on a jack, and construction was obviously just completed. There was an ample crop of beans, as well.

In the end, I guess it could be true that he raised a treasure ship from the bottom of the ocean, but I doubt it. He could have a bank in the Cayman Islands, but I doubt it. However, his welding story was in the newspaper, and the motorcycle is right there in his yard.

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I Think I’m Elitist

March 9, 2018 Leave a comment

I drove up and parked in front of the convenience store which is beside a biker bar. Lingering in front of the bar was a bunch of slovenly looking characters waiting for the bar to open on the Friday afternoon. All of them were smoking cigarettes and chuckling together in French. I could hear that they were exalted because it was Friday, “vendredi” as they call it, and a weekend of drunkenness was eagerly anticipated. They were speaking French because this town in Eastern Ontario is close to the border with French Quebec.

As I exited the car, two of the men and one butch looking girl in worn work boots rushed to enter the store ahead of me. I entered and was made to wait patiently while they purchased dozens of cans of beer, undoubtedly planning to spend their weekend in drunken stupors, and would begin by squandering some of their meager pay in the dingy biker bar. When the girl had her beer she turned quickly and slammed right into me.

I think I’m elitist because I definitely feel superior to them. I don’t smoke nor do I drink except on special occasions, and rarely is it beer. I do not rush to get ahead of others so they must wait while I complete my purchase. In this case it was potato chips to please my granddaughter and a lottery ticket because if one doesn’t enter one can’t possibly win.

I wonder if any of the rabble ever reads books or listens to good music or watches intelligent television. They probably have never sat at a computer keyboard and explored the world outside of bars and beer. I might well be wrong, but I doubt it. The simple lives of simple people are a burden for people who contribute intelligence and taste to society.

So I’m an elitist. What of it?

Faking It

February 25, 2018 Leave a comment

Some people take on the preferences of the person or people they want to attract. This is reckless. If the person you wish to attract is not aligned with your ideas of what life should be like, and how it is enjoyed, it is unwise to fake, or pretend that you fit in with their preferred style and activities.

I know a woman in her fifties who is uncomfortable about her body. She encountered a man she with whom she hoped to spend time. She succeeded in having him invite her for a weekend away in a country setting. She accepted eagerly, although she is not a fan of the great outdoors, and usually avoids situations in forest settings or cottage country.

When they arrived in a remote, secluded area, the gentleman set up his camping equipment beside a gently flowing river. The setting was beautiful, but the beauty of the environment was lost on the woman. She did manage, however, to accept the basics of sleeping in a tent in a sleeping bag. Even watching him cook dinner on an open fire was not too difficult for her to endure. The night passed uneventfully, as the zipped-up sleeping bags kept them isolated from each other.

Morning came warm, dry and sunny. The woman crawled painfully out of her insulating sleeping bag as she noticed the gentleman was already gone from his bag. She heard the fire crackling and smelled bacon frying cheerfully in a pan on the open fire. She emerged from the tent well covered by her loose-fitting garment that hid the shape within that was an embarrassment to her.

She did her best to enjoy the bacon and eggs on her tin plate, and the cream free coffee in the tin mug. Their conversation was cordial as the gentleman was patiently aware of the woman’s misgivings. All went well as the meal was enjoyed as much as possible in the surroundings that were very unfamiliar and awkward to the woman. When the meal was completed and utensils were washed by the host in the adjacent flowing river, the woman was overwhelmed by his next suggestion.

He said he was eager to enjoy the cool, clear water, and with barely a pause he stripped down to be completely naked. He stood in the morning sun by the river’s edge and enjoyed the feeling of unfettered freedom. The woman, although somewhat aghast, couldn’t help but notice that he had a very attractive body for a man in his fifties.

He strode into the river carefully on the slippery stones on the bottom and dove into the current. He emerged with his longish hair slicked back and urged emphatically that she should join him. After some rather insistent urging, she humiliated herself by finally stripping down, doing her best to keep hidden by the surrounding foliage. Ashamed as she was of her drooping breasts, heavy thighs, and sagging backside, she dashed from behind a bush into the water.

Unfamiliar as she was with the country life, she stepped on the slippery rocks in the water and fell heavily on her very white, bulbous backside in the shallows. Her flabby breasts swayed loosely as the gentleman hurried carefully to help her up. The water was cold, and her large nipples grew erect as she moved desperately to deeper water. She sank to her knees and immersed herself up to her neck in the flowing current.

The gentleman chose to overlook the woman’s physical imperfections, and implored her to join him in a swim. She dared not move, and the man indulged himself until he was satisfied with the activity. Standing straight, tall, and unashamed, he strode out of the water and lay back on a folding chair to let the sun warm and dry him.

While he relaxed, eyes closed against the brilliant sunshine, the woman crawled over the rocks and out of the water. She moved swiftly behind the foliage and found a towel in the tent. She dried and dressed herself and joined the gentleman in the warming sun. They spoke little, and she was wishing she knew what he was thinking of her.

The weekend was cut short, as the relationship potential was properly gone. The gentleman went about closing down his campsite and stashing it all in the car trunk. On the drive home the pair was almost silent, with few words exchanged. While she berated herself in her mind for having been so hasty, the gentleman did the same to himself.

When he dropped her at her apartment house, he stepped around the car as she exited it. They shook hands, and he said he’d call her. She knew he never would, and she was glad of that.

Women are not Ornaments

February 6, 2018 Leave a comment

pri_68161917      Many fans of Formula One auto racing are upset that the iconic ‘grid girls’ are to be discontinued. I am pleased that the girls will be gone, because they should not stand in rows, dressed in identical, sexy outfits. I raced sports cars when I was younger, and I always felt that it was not a good idea to have women in the pit areas unless they were part of a team, working with the crew in a real job.

The grid girls are just a distraction for fans of the sport. Race time is a time of intense focus and concentration, and women in the pits for the sake of ornamentation are clearly out of place. When watching a Formula One event, I have always wondered why the pretty ladies demeaned themselves in that way. They are doing nothing other than perhaps holding a sign with a number on it, or some such thing. They are superfluous.

The smiles are pretty, the legs are lovely, but neither has anything to do with the very serious and expensive event that is a Formula One race. The women are obviously instructed to smile prettily and applaud vigorously as the sweating drivers hurry past them to the cool down rooms. I have never seen any driver even notice the girls. They know that the smiles and applause are just set up for the viewing audience, and have no real meaning to the participants in the event.

I am pleased that I will no longer feel sorry for the girls that were positioned on the grid and in the entrance hall to the cool down room. I am sorry that they are losing whatever small pay they received for that humble occupation. The truth is that only women who are either driving the car or working as part of the crew should be in the pits of any motor race. Just the same as men are not a good fit in a crocheting group. Men should be there if they are fans of crocheting and participating in the craft, but not to be stand-by ornaments.

In this modern age, no job need be gender-specific, but being good looking and standing holding a number sign is not a worthy career goal. Ladies are welders and builders and lawyers and doctors as good as any man can be. They are well-advised to build careers rather than be pretty and hold signs. Any job that can be replaced by a post on a base is not a job for an intelligent person, male or female.

Charity Needs No God

January 29, 2018 Leave a comment

Hungry men and women gather at shelters. They are seeking meals that are provided by various religious groups. The individuals who believe they are doing God’s work are working to help their fellow humans. The congregations provide the funding, sharing in the warm feeling of doing God’s work, helping people in need. Excellent! But what does God have to do with it?

There is no reason why some God of some religion has to be involved in the good and generous works being performed. The generosity of spirit should suffice to satisfy the practitioners. It should not be necessary to display crosses, crescents, stars and what have you. The fact is that God is a myth, and science has proven it with research and facts. Therefore, the generous people that work to do good for others are really doing it for their internal satisfaction. Perhaps that feeling is what many people take to be the spirit of God within each of us.

The recent death in Montreal of Father John, known as “Pops”, brought out a plethora of people that profess to have been saved by Father John – Pops. The man did truly wonderful, selfless work. He operated a large motorhome-like van in a program known as “Dans La Rue”, which is French for “On The Street”.

Pops and his volunteers go out on the night streets of Montreal and provide meals and drinks to the street people. Some are old people who have lost their way in life. Many are young people seeking a way to survive. They have survived thanks to Pops and his generous program of feeding the needy.

The fact is, Pops could do the same work with the same result without the church and the Father John part. Why is God included? I don’t know, but I’m quite sure there is no God.

The Lesser Evil

January 27, 2018 Leave a comment

The lesser evil is still evil. We don’t have to accept the lesser evil as the best we can do. I refer to every endeavors, including highly educated professions and every other level of society down to careless welfare recipients. Facing two plates of food, neither of which we enjoy is a logical case. If one plate is fried chicken skin and the other plate is beef liver, the liver would be chosen by those that don’t hate it and chicken skin would be chosen by those that can’t stand liver, for whatever reason.

The 2016 presidential election in the United States of America might be a case of the lesser evil being the greater evil. Many voters believed that Hilary Clinton is so evil that even Donald J. Trump appeared to be the lesser evil. As time flows on, however, it is revealed that so called President Trump is actually a psychopathic liar, a thief, an oligarch and a traitor. In hindsight, as evil as she is, Clinton would have been a better choice.

I usually watch true police and crime series on television. Most often, there is a police interrogation of a victim, a witness, or a suspect. There comes a time when an individual is asked about his or her relationship.

“It’s fine,” they say. “You know, there are fights and stuff, like every relationship.”

NO! Accepting a relationship in which some scrapping and shouting, and even hitting is not the lesser of any evil. It is an evil-bound relationship. If a person can’t find nearly constant peace and confidence in one’s special relationship, one might be settling for the lesser evil. Don’t do it.

There should be a relationship for you where expressions of love are spoken every day. Where you are put first by the other party and the other party is put first by you. The lesser evil is not good enough. You want the absence of stress, doubt, and evil. Get it!

An Unnecessary War

December 4, 2017 Leave a comment

It is so often referred to as ‘the war between the sexes’ and there is really such a war going on all the time. Women and men are so vastly different from each other, a great deal of understanding and cooperation is required, for us to get through life. I don’t mean within a relationship like marriage. I mean just living, going to the bank, grocery shopping, taking a walk or a bicycle ride. And all of the strife is purely natural. That’s what’s so distressing about it. Society has put many things in their proper order so we can survive as a species of mammal. It seems to be more difficult to put sexual matters into an acceptable orderly form.

There is a vast number of differences between women and men, and they are not stationary. As society rolls on through time, men are changing and women are changing. Changes of any kind, positive or negative, are traumatic for the average human. One wonders if violence by men against women is because women are not the traditional female that many men think they should be.

It’s an insoluble problem. I wondered why female television journalists most often wear garments that show chest and cleavage. It seemed out of place on someone delivering hard news, so I asked my knowledgeable daughter about it. She said it’s for style, and in that moment I understood why women show various parts of themselves. They are not expecting to attract lovers… they are expecting to look nice – and they do.

Men should see the women as pretty, well turned out, self-assured. On the other hand, if a man wants to look good, he should dress to look good to the kind of company he hopes to keep. There are myriad styles for both genders to appeal to the great variety of groups that are available to all and any.

I must admit, however, I cannot see the reasons why some people find low, baggy shorts with underwear sticking out the top attractive. I am beginning to understand the look of not shaved yet not a full beard. It’s interesting how values change over time.

When I was a kid, if I’d showed up in the schoolyard with loose baggy shorts and underwear sticking out the top, I’d have got the shit kicked out of me. For sure the shorts would be taken off me and thrown into a tree. Now, it’s cool? And shaving was promoted by vilifying “the four o’clock shadow” on a man’s face.

I’m still sure that tattoos are a bad idea. Piercing is too, but at least the holes will close by themselves if one should wise up and remove the trinkets. Tattoos are infinitely more expensive and more discomfort to remove than to acquire.

I hope I live to see society in general swing back toward sensible.