World’s Smallest Political Quiz

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World’s Smallest Political Quiz.

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Worlds Smallest Political Quiz

Worlds Smallest Political Quiz

I’m Back. Sorta.

Hey! I made it!! The trip only took about 3 times longer than expected. I didn’t think I’d be out of touch for nearly so long. I’m so glad to see so many of you stuck around and didn’t jump ship on me.

We brought the ship into Cartagena (Columbia) this morning. It took us a couple of hours to get cleared by customs & immigration and to turn the ship over to it’s new owners.

Then it was off to find a hotel for the night (thanks to the personal generosity of the captain). Since we had no internet onboard, we had no way to look for anything beforehand. We had a recommendation for one from our Columbian client and we went there.

We wound up going to another place. It’s actually an apartment and close to the beach. We were all just happy to be off the ship. First order of duty was dinner and drinks! The captain treated us to a nice dinner at the place across the street. Everybody came back to the apt and crashed afterward. I went for a walk.

I’ll tell you more of the story over the next few days. It’s after midnight and I’ll be up at 0630 in the morning. We leave here at 0730 for the airport. My flight leaves around 1030 (I still don’t know the exact details).

I heard my flight(s) will arrive into New Orleans around 2300. Then I still have to get back to the dock where I left my truck. It’s about a 6 hour drive from there to get home. I’m not sure I’ll be able to make that drive after being up all day. I’m not so good at staying up past 24 hours anymore.

So I won’t actually be home for another day or two. Look for me to catch up after that. πŸ™‚

 

Good News!

I thought I had some really great news today. I got a call about a DPO job! Only for a month, but hey- I’ll do just about anything right now. A month as DPO would help a LOT!

I was actually in Houston for an interview for a different job when I got the call about the DPO. I think the interview went pretty well, but will have to wait and see what happens next week. I’m still not sure exactly what that job is all about.

When I got out of the interview (I had my phone turned off), I had another call about a job. This one was leaving immediately. Only for AB, but hey, beggars can’t be choosers! I still remember how to chip and paint. πŸ™‚

The DPO job is not a sure thing, they don’t even know for sure when they’d need me, or IF they’d need me at all. I figure a bird in the hand is worth 2 in the bush (learned that lesson). I’m leaving early in the morning.

I’ll drive to Louisiana, get on the boat, deliver the boat to Columbia, fly back home. Should take less than 10 days if everything goes as planned (it never does).

I’m looking forward to the adventure. πŸ™‚

I’ll be SO glad to be back at sea again. Only problem is- I’ll be incommunicado. They have no internet or phone. I swore I’d never take a job again where I couldn’t stay in touch, but it’s been so long since I’ve had ANY work. I’m just going to have to suck it up and keep hoping things get better offshore soon.

It’s hard to believe how people treat you when they know you’re desperate for work. Hard to believe anyone thinks it’s OK to send people to work totally cut off from the world for weeks at a time. Yes, we were all used to that, back in the day. Back when no one had internet or cel phones, it was bearable. We waited to get snail mail when we reached port. That was decades ago! Hard to believe employers still get away with treating their people like that. We’re not talking 3rd world employers either, these are Americans. πŸ™

Anybody out there from Columbia? I would love to learn more about it. I was there for a short time during high school, not nearly enough time.

Songs of the Sea: Dead Sea

Here’s another one for my Songs of the Sea series. The Lumineers play ‘Dead Sea’. I really love this band. They have a lot of great songs -most have nothing to do with the water. πŸ˜‰

I haven’t been spending as much time as usual listening to music. My mind just hasn’t been in the right place. I listen to the radio (KPFT) when I go to work (which hasn’t been nearly enough lately). At home I just haven’t been ‘in the mood’- for music- or anything else.

I’ve been spending more time on the computer than anything else lately. The last couple of days I’ve been seeing a lot of stuff to do with ‘just do it’. Even the song. Is it the universe trying to tell me to get off my ass and just DO it?

I think it probably is.

“Dead Sea”

I stood alone, upon the platform in vain
The Puerto Ricans they were playing me salsa in the rain
With open doors and manual locks
In fast food parking lots

I headed West, I was a man on the move
New York had lied to me, I needed the truth
Oh, I need somebody, needed someone I could trust
I don’t gamble, but if I did I would bet on us

Like the Dead Sea
You told me I was like the Dead Sea
You’ll never sink when you are with me
Oh, Lord, like the Dead Sea

Whoa, I’m like the Dead Sea
[Video version:]Β The nicest words you ever said to me
[Album version:]Β The finest words you ever said to me
Honey can’t you see,
I was born to be, be your Dead Sea

You told me you were good at running away
Domestic life, it never suited you like a suitcase
You left with just the clothes on your back
You took the rest when you took the map

Yes, there are times we live for somebody else
Your father died and you decided to live
It for yourself you felt, you just felt it was time
And I’m glad, cause you with cats, that’s just not right

Like the Dead Sea
You told me I was like the Dead Sea
You’ll never sink when you are with me
Oh, Lord, I’m your Dead Sea

Whoa, I’m like the Dead Sea
The nicest words you ever said to me
Honey can’t you see
I was born to be, be your dead sea

I’ve been down, I’ve been defeated
You’re the message, I will heed it.
Would you stay,
Would you stay the night?

Dead Sea,
You told me I was like the Dead Sea
I never sink when you are with me
Oh, Lord, I’m your Dead Sea

Whoa, I’m like the Dead Sea
The nicest words you ever said to me
Honey can’t you see
I was born to be, be your Dead Sea

Johns Pass Seafood Festival

I was reading the latest National Geographic Traveler magazine and I happened to notice an ad in the back for the Johns Pass Seafood Festival.

It caught my eye because I grew up there. They just started having the festival when I left to go to school and then moved to Texas.

Johns Pass Florida

Johns Pass Florida

It looks like it’s grown quite a bit. I wonder if any of my old friends would still be around? I used to know all the fishermen. I wonder how many of them are still left? The city was doing an awful good job of clearing them out when I left. Not ‘appropriate’ for the tourist trap they wanted to create. πŸ™

The Seafood Festival is kind of like the St Patricks Day Parade is here, everybody comes back from wherever they’ve been to have a good time and catch up with old friends. At least we do still have a real community to gather together at Surfside. I can’t say the same for Johns Pass. They destroyed what we had- a REAL community, of REAL fishermen- to replace it with nothing but condos and fake shit! All for the sake of the tourists.

I’m glad someone’s making money off it. (NOT)!

It’s from October 27-30 this year. I don’t have anything planned then. I keep hoping like hell I’ll get some real work, so I’m not planning much very far ahead of time. Also, I’ve already planned a couple of budget busting trips. I think I’ll skip Florida again this year. It makes me more sad than anything to go there now anyway. πŸ™

 

Cool Stuff

I was working in Houston on Monday. We finished up pretty early, so I decided to stop at the Museum of Natural Science on the way home.

I’m a member, so it’s free if I don’t go to the special exhibitions. This time they had one on the Virgin of Guadeloupe. I wasn’t really very interested in that, and by the time I got there it was after 3, so I just wandered around the regular exhibits. There’s plenty to see for free. πŸ™‚

I spent a lot of time this time in the exhibit on ancient Egypt. I always thought all that stuff about mummies was pretty cool, and I really love the old stories about gods, goddesses, etc. They had a lot of that kind of thing on display. Quite a few mummies and they explained all about it. I liked how they set up the exhibit too. When you entered, it really put you in the right frame of mind. πŸ˜‰

Here’s a photo of a mummy case, inside and out.

I spent most of my time in this exhibit this week, but I did take a quick look at the section on the Amazon, the rocks/minerals (the gem vault was still closed), and the shells. Here’s a nice shot of some gypsum.

I loved this thing! It’s called a ‘sandstone concretion’. I just think it’s beautiful, the way it twists and turns, spirals around, shades of gray. I could do a lot with photos of this thing. πŸ™‚

I know I’ve been posting a lot of gloom and doom lately. It’s been hard for me to try and come up with cool stuff to write about when my life has been so screwy lately. I do still find things to keep me going, just not nearly as much as when I’m working. I hope you’ll stick around till things get more interesting. πŸ™‚

Computers!

I’ve been having so much trouble with my computers! It’s unbelievable!

All I really want to do with them is write and work on my photography. And, of course, to check email and do a little bit of surfing. Is that so much to ask?

Since I got back from Mexico (end of February), I’ve had nothing but problems! I don’t usually get pissed off that easily, but after days and days of doing everything I know how, calling (on hold for hours), dealing with repairmen, turning everything off and leaving for hours, it finally got to where I was screaming at the computer in total frustration. It got so annoying I actually broke 2 computers. Broke the screen on one, dented one up pretty badly. Of course that did not help.

I’ve already bought 2 new computers. First I bought a new windows (forced to buy a windows 10, which I did NOT want- I HATE IT). Hoping that would solve the problem. But I guess I got a lemon! First problem was- something wrong with the screen. The size of the writing would change for no reason. I would be typing something (or even just trying to read an article) and it would zoom up to 300% and the next second down to 5%.

They fixed the screen, but it still doesn’t work right. It’s soooooooo sloooooow. And, it does the same thing all the other computers around here have been doing. Not just my computers (and iPod and kindle), but my 2 friends computers too. Freezing up constantly, randomly, can’t do anything about it but wait till it decides to go back to work! It’s brand new! I still can’t use it for anything!!

So, I bought another Apple computer. To replace the one I banged up so badly. Looking at it, I’m not sure how long I can expect it to last. Besides, it’s stuffed FULL already!

I had them add extra storage on the new apple, since I really don’t have that much on the old one yet. I finally got it the other day and tried to install my photography programs on it. I use Adobe Lightroom to edit my photos. I’ve been trying to find ways to earn some income. One way is to upload photos onto stock photography sites. They MUST be edited first!

On my old windows computer I had Lightroom, Photoshop, and Portrait Professional. I had tons of photos on there, thousands and thousands of them. I never had any problem with it being ‘full’.

On the apple, I don’t even have a quarter of my photos on there. I only have Lightroom on it. It’s stuffed full. Constantly telling me I need to remove items! That might be OK, if I could figure out HOW to remove items that I don’t really need!

Windows computers are so much better in that regard. I can clearly see which are programs, which are apps, which are simply files- written or photos. On the apples, I can’t tell a damn thing about anything! I don’t want to just randomly start deleting things! I can’t even tell how large the files are! At least on windows, you can tell the size of a file and can get some idea of what they are that way.

So, now I have another new apple, with more memory. I don’t have anything on it but what it came with. I’m trying tonight to put Lightroom on it. I’ve been having a lot of trouble with that too. It seems I have put it onto too many computers already. I went and bought another copy, just so I could put it on this new computer. I’ve tried for 4 days now to get it to download.

Tonight I tried again with customer service (online chat) and after having to give them remote control of my computer (which I REALLY don’t like to do), they finally got it working for me. Apparently, there was a ‘block’ from their end!

I hope, now, finally, I will be able to get some work done around here!

One Day

I worked yesterday. One day. That’s it for the month. I got a total of 4 days for July. I’m thankful, but somehow that’s just not enough.

I was reading the latest Workboat Magazine. I saw an ad for cooks and galley hands and it actually got my hopes up. Until I called this afternoon and they told me they weren’t really looking for anyone. They got a special deal on ads, so they were running them every month regardless of not needing anyone. πŸ™

I never imagined that I would ever again be so thrilled at the prospect of a job as a galley hand! I thought those days were long gone. After all the time, effort and money I’ve invested in myself to earn a master mariners license and I’m back to the position of jumping at any chance to be a galley hand, and thrilled for the opportunity. How sad.

It seems to have become standard practice for companies these days to advertise constantly when they don’t want to hire anybody. Then most of them refuse to respond in any way. I was lucky today to reach a company that actually answered the phone with a human being! It’s much better to be told the truth, rather than hanging on hope when there’s really nothing there to hope for.

I keep wondering what society will be like when such large numbers of people are put out of work. So many people are now being replaced by robots. What are we all going to do? It’s bad enough already when people who used to make good money have lost those jobs to overseas workers and have to work for minimum wage instead. They can’t afford to buy anything American made anymore, so even more jobs are shipped overseas.

People say it’s like back in the days when cars replaced the horse and buggy. What happened to the people that made horse whips? Or swept up the horse shit? I understand why they bring up that comparison, but I don’t think it’s really the same situation.

First of all, we had a much smaller population (in the US and worldwide). Second of all, we were not so ‘globalized’ back then. Americans were not all competing against foreigners who could do the work so much cheaper- transportation and communication systems were not up to the job. Third, the pace of change is so much faster. A person used to be able to learn a trade and spend decades, if not a lifetime, doing one thing. Not any more.

How many skills can one learn in a lifetime? How good can you get at a skill if you’re forced to learn another every couple of years? How can you afford to constantly re-educate yourself, especially when everything now requires specialized, expensive ‘training’ and a piece of paper?

Can this country survive when the vast majority of us are either unemployed or barely surviving on minimum wage jobs?

Maybe, but I’m not sure I want to see it.