12/22/2014

The Final Christmas for David's Musings


The Final Christmas Post




Yes, indeed, this will be my final Christmas as editor, chief writer and all-around protagonist of David's Musings.  With this being the week of Christmas, I think I should make note of this being the final Christmas to be celebrated by this blog.  It will still be around next Christmas.  But, it will mostly be in read-only mode.  As stated previously, the dominant theme of this blog will become focused on guest posters in the Paranormal/Supernatural theme.  There will be the rare post from a staff writer.  But, virtually none from me.  So, I wanted to make a special note of this in this post.  I've shared some tips for safe Christmas shopping during previous Christmas seasons.  I've shared some of my special moments during Christmas over my life.  I hope I was able to keep things interesting here.  I just am not able to keep up 2 or 3 blogs any longer.  I had to let The Right Commentary slide into a blogspot.com address.  I have not made a post there in about 3 months.  I doubt I will make any more posts there as well.  My sole focus will be on my retirement blog, The Retired Baby Boomer. 

I have enjoyed this blog and the many friends I made and lost over the years.  I think of them a lot during Christmas.  I will always love Christmas.  It is a special time of year to me now and always has been.  It always will be special to me.  As I approach the 1000th post of this blog, I think of all the posts that we published and then deleted because we did not like them.  We would probably already be over 1000 posts if we had left them intact.  As it stands, this blog is at 973 posts now.  So, this final Christmas post adds to that total as well.  Our wish is that everyone will continue reading this blog even though I personally will no longer be involved after that 1000th post.  Others will take over management while I continue to be blog owner.

I want to wish everyone, and I do mean everyone a very Merry Christmas.  May all your prayers and wishes come true this Christmas.

JD Weldy

12/19/2014

Blog Update for December 2014






I wish I would have done a monthly update when I first started this blog.  As it is, I do one or two blog updates a year (at most).  As subscribers and visitors know by now, David's Musings is in it's winding down stage.  Sometime in either late March or early April, this blog will reach 1000 posts.  I feel that's enough for one blog. Also, on April 5, 2015, this blog will be 7 years old.  That is a Jurassic Period type age for a blog.  Most blogs don't last over 3 months.  I used to have quite a bit of activity here when this blog first started up.  Now, I get few in the way of comments. We have tried to make things as interesting as can be here.  But, apparently, people just weren't interested.  I confess, I didn't visit other blogs as often as I should have in order to generate more visitor comments.  We thought content alone would attract visitors who would comment.  After about the 3rd year, we didn't worry about getting comments.  Now, we just concentrate on content and if people want to comment, fine.  If they don't, that is fine also.  So, now with about 4 months to go before I take my leave of this blog, I want to say a few things that probably will be repeated in other blog updates.

To begin, this blog will not be shutting down!   The dominant theme here will be the highly successful Paranormal/Supernatural topic.  We will be accepting more stories since there will be at least two stories a month on this topic.  I have had to turn down many personal stories that I feel deserve to be published here.  I have been asked, in email, if I am considering putting all these stories into an eBook and publishing them.  That will involve a significant number of factors.  Not the least of these being the authors themselves.  That will be something we will have to work out over a period of negotiation.  I'm not sure how that will turn out.  As for me posting, my posting days are most likely over on David's Musings.  I have staff members who will post once in a while under my byline.  But, they will note it is a story by them at the end of the story.  Most of the stories will be, as stated, on the Paranormal/Supernatural topic.

I will be concentrating most of my time on my new retirement blog, The Retired Baby Boomer.  Unlike this blog, that blog does get quite a bit of comments and interaction among the visitors.  I encourage everyone who is close to retirement age, retired and just curious about retirement to please visit us there.  There is a lot of good information available both in the resources section and articles posted.  I currently have one other author who posts in addition to me.  I am looking for one more author to assist us.  If you have some sort of financial planning degree, you are especially welcome to join TRBB as an assistant author.  I hope to see you there.

As I said at the outset of this blog entry, this blog will be seven years old next April.  That seems almost impossible to believe.  It's been an interesting ride, to say the least.   I've been able to sooth the writer inside me.  I've been able to publish a novel in eBook form since this blog started.  I've been very appreciative all the encouragement I have received over the years to continue onward in my goal of getting "Diary:  Alone on Earth" published.  Again, we are closing on the 1000th post here and things will tend to change once that happens.

12/15/2014

Police Abuse #8







I'm not going to repeat all the accusations and counter-accusations in the killings of Eric Garner and Michael Brown.  You can read that anywhere on the internet.  What I will say is that I do not believe the police, in each instance, is 100% innocent and pure as the driven snow.  For example, I find Darren Wilson firing 12 times, at Michael Brown, a bit, shall we say, excessive?  Why continue firing at Brown as he is fleeing the scene?  Are there not fleeing felon laws in Missouri that forbid this?  Why not call for backup as he was in pursuit of Brown?  In the case of Eric Garner, when a suspect tells you he can't breath, why not let up to allow him to catch a breath?  Police said if they had allowed him off the ground, he would have become antagonistic again.  So, you just kill someone because of something they might do? I do not condone the violence in Ferguson over the Michael Brown death.  But, I don't approve of a police officer shooting at someone 12 times, including several times as that person was fleeing the scene.  Too many unarmed black men are being shot by police these days.  But, police brutality extends to every color, every race.  It just seems police have little regard for black people.  Something has to be done to correct this and soon. 

There has to be police accountability.  The grand jury takes the word of the district attorney of what happened and return no indictment.  The interaction between jury and DA must be investigated everywhere in this nation.  The jury must be independent and without prejudice of any case the DA brings to them.  Whenever a citizen files a complaint of police violating their civil rights, this must be investigated by an independent civilian board without any connection to the judicial system or law enforcement.  This is the only way police can be held accountable for their actions.  We cannot give total authority to police to do as they wish in every encounter with American citizens.  If police violate the rights they are sworn to uphold, then what difference is there between us and some Banana Republic where there are no rights for citizens?  Men and women have fought and died so we have the Bill of Rights.  These rights cannot be allowed to be infringed by someone wearing a blue uniform and shiny badge because that person is having a bad day. 

There has been recent talk of forcing all law enforcement, with power of arrest, to have liability insurance.  Those with no or few complaints get cheap insurance.  Those that have a high number of complaints must pay the highest rates just as car owners do that have had a number of speeding tickets.  I'm not sure that will ever happen.  But, it is a good idea.  The best idea I have heard is requiring all law enforcement to wear body cams that can never be turned off during the officer's shift.  They have pros and cons.  It would force both officer and citizen to be on their best behavior since the camera doesn't lie.  The cons are that many critics say nothing would keep police officers from turning off the camera or delete videos that could make them look bad.  There is a way around this.  If the officer turns off a camera, he is suspended without pay, immediately upon discovery.  The suspect then has all charges tossed out as a result.  Now, problems do occur to cameras that are not the fault of a police officer.  A good (independent) technician can determine if the body cam had been tampered with  or not.  These are two ideas to bring law enforcement personnel under control in this country.  Right now, law enforcement does as they wish because they know "others" have got their back.  That has to end.

12/12/2014

Christmas With My Ex-wife





I spent Thanksgiving with my ex-wife.  It now appears I will be spending Christmas with her as well.  It's not often I do something I know I will regret.  Thanksgiving lasted 24 hours and I had to leave for reasons I won't go into at this time.  I suspect Christmas is going to present the same problems for me and my ex-wife.  To be honest, we just don't get along when we are together longer than one day.  It seems we let little things cause arguments just as we did when we were married.  At the same time, neither of us wants to be alone for Christmas.  Nobody should be alone for Christmas.  It's heartbreaking to know there are so many people around the country who will be alone with nothing to celebrate Christmas.  I will say my ex-wife is a very generous person.  She has always been very free-hearted.  At times, she can be the most kind person you will ever meet.  At other times, she can be mean, if not cruel.  I've never quite understood her.  She lets the holidays get the best of her for one thing.  I have told her that the holidays are a time of celebration, not one of being angry about.

I have always loved Thanksgiving and especially Christmas.  Christmas is the season of love and giving.  A season of giving thanks for our savior, Jesus Christ.  It seems He is often forgotten during Christmas now.  My ex-wife certainly doesn't seem to think Jesus is the reason for the season.  She just can see Christmas as a burden and it should not be that way.  So, why do I go to house for Christmas, you may ask?  She needs me during this time and she doesn't even know it.  That's as succinctly as I can put it.  I pray things go smoother than they did at Thanksgiving.

12/08/2014

The Bobcat Encounter

Bobcats are a ferocious little feline that inhabits wooded areas in the South.  They are found all over North America for the most part.  Like most cats, they are solitary creatures who are very territorial. Bobcats can weigh from 15 to 40lbs. As a small child living in southern Mississippi, we would hear them scream at night.  They sound eerily like a woman screaming or at least, that is the way it sounded to me. Sometimes, bobcats would come up and try to get in our chicken coop at night.  The chickens would let out a squabbling that alerted my father.  My father shot a bobcat one night that had gotten himself entangled in the chicken wire.  Before he was shot, that bobcat let out screams that could be heard for at least a couple of miles.  It was my job to take out the bobcat the next morning.  I remember how small it appeared.  It wasn't much bigger than our housecat, Midnight.  Of course, Midnight feasted off any mice he could find and the cat food he got from us.  So, he was a big, fat cat. 

About a year after the above bobcat incident, my brother and I went on our Saturday morning stroll into the woods behind our house.  It was something we did each Saturday morning after we ate breakfast.  Of course, we would each have a powerful stick we took with us for safety reasons.  So, on this one particular cool, October morning, my brother and I went about exploring the vast wilderness of pine trees, high grasslands and whatever else we could see.  We had been walking about an hour, the maximum from our house we were allowed to go or were comfortable.  I knew at an earlier age, you can get turned around in the woods and get easily lost.  My one landmark was the creek which was always to the east.  As long as it wasn't a cloud covered day, I felt at ease being in the woods.  On one of these Saturday walks, we uncounted the remains of a dead deer.  It had been dead for about three months, at least.  So, we never knew what we were going to see on this weekly walk.

I told my brother, it was time to turn back.  We had seen nothing out of the ordinary anyway.  So, as we started to turn back, we heard a low, gutteral growl come from our left.  On top of a fallen pine tree was this full adult bobcat and he was in a bad mood.  My first thought we had come between him and his meal.  I saw traces of fur in front of me.  Most likely this bobcat had just killed a rabbit. I guess the bobcat thought we wanted to steal his morning meal.  I told my brother to move slowly to the right, very slowly.  But, as we started to slowly back away, the bobcat made an aggressive move by jumping off the pine tree as if he were preparing to attack.  This was completely out of character for a bobcat.  They were shy, solitary animals who did no want human contact at all. Bobcats would usually run if they even smelled humans in the area.  But, this bobcat was not running.  He appeared to be about to attack my little brother.  "Get out of here, GO!!!!." I yelled at the bobcat. The bobcat wasn't budging.  It was a game of chicken, from which, he was showing no hints of backing down.  This bobcat was acting completely out of character for any bobcat I had ever heard about.  I had never even heard of a bobcat attacking anyone.  Of course, leave it to me and my brother to come head to head with the one bobcat who was willing to give humans a run for their money.  The bobcat started crouching down and that told me he was about to leap at either my brother or me.  In desperation, I raised the heavy stick I had and lunged at the bobcat.  This startled the bobcat and he quickly disappeared deep into the woods.  My brother and I wasted no time getting back home.

I told my father and several others this story and all were incredulous.  Mr. Horace Owens, who was owner of a local meat market, said he had lived in southern Mississippi the entirety of his 74 years and had seen only one bobcat, which quickly ran away.  My father said it was possible the bobcat had rabies or just refused to walk away from a fresh kill.  No one bought that either as bobcats were extremely fearful of humans. But, as my father stated, the bobcats instinctively knew we were "small humans" and posed no significant threat.  No one accepted that either.  The most likely reason the bobcat did not run was due to a fresh kill or it possibly had rabies.  Two days after our encounter, we got news that a bobcat had attacked a 5-year-old girl in her back yard.  The bobcat then came after the father of the child.  The father killed the bobcat with a pistol he carried with him. As it turns out, the bobcat had rabies.  The child had to go through the painful series of rabies shots.  As it turns out, our story was verified by the unfortunate incident of the little girl.

You may be wondering why I am repeating this story about a bobcat so many years ago (in 1961).  A neighbor ran over a bobcat last Saturday night as he was turning into his driveway.  The bobcat had been searching for food in his garbage can and could not escape the car in time.  The bobcat did not die instantly.  He screamed for a period of time before someone took a gun and killed it.  It made me think about two things.  One, about the story I just repeated above.  Two, bobcats, like so many predators, are running out of natural habitat.  They are getting closer and closer to homes where people dwell.  Their encroachment on civilization could eventually spell their doom.


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