Taxman

Gotta go see the accountant and pay the taxman today (again). Ugh!!!

I got an extension again, so now have until October 15 to deal with the mess instead of getting it all over with in April like most people do.

One more reason to get off my ass and figure out HOW to move out of here! If I can move, the first $100,000 or so of earned income will be tax free. Of course, I have no idea how I would ever earn anywhere close to that amount outside of the Gulf of Mexico, but that’s beside the point!

If I don’t have to give up close to 50% of my income in taxes, that means I can easily afford to live on 50% less income. And, I can probably avoid getting ripped off for another $10-15,000 in the obamascam!  I’m SURE there are many places around the world where I could manage to live nicely on 50% of my income.

Now, the issue is: how do I come up with ANY income if I’m not working in the Gulf of Mexico?

Great song by the Beatles! Who would’ve thought anyone could make a great song about taxes? Now, just think about the lyrics for a minute. 🙁

Taxman

Let me tell you how it will be
There’s one for you, nineteen for me
Cos I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman
Should five per cent appear too small
Be thankful I don’t take it all
Cos I’m the taxman, yeah I’m the taxman
If you drive a car, I’ll tax the street
If you try to sit, I’ll tax your seat
If you get too cold I’ll tax the heat
If you take a walk, I’ll tax your feet
Taxman!
Cos I’m the taxman, yeah I’m the taxman
Don’t ask me what I want it for (Aahh Mr. Wilson)
If you don’t want to pay some more (Aahh Mr. Heath)
Cos I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman
Now my advice for those who die
Declare the pennies on your eyes
Cos I’m the taxman, yeah, I’m the taxman
And you’re working for no one but me
Taxman!
And just in case that’s not enough to get you going, here’s an even better one from Stefan Molyneux on Freedomain Radio! Warning: some ‘bad’ language, if that kind of thing bothers you, try your best to ignore it, this guy is worth listening to!!
For some reason, I can’t get the video to open up here (and the editor won’t let me fix the spacing anymore either!!). But please take a look at it through the link. I know a lot of you don’t like my politics, but I really do think if more people took the time to really think through what we’re dealing with, things would change for the better. Yes, better for ALL of us!

Daily Prompt: Toy Story- Sea Snark

Daily Prompt:Toy Story– What was your favorite plaything as a child? Do you see any connection between your life now, and your favorite childhood toy?

I’m not sure if my sea snark qualifies as a toy but playing with it (sailing) was my favorite thing to do while I was growing up (other than reading).

I used to take my little sailboat our almost every day, usually after school. Sometimes, I would even sail it TO school 🙂

Made out of Styrofoam, it was indestructible. Unlike the Titanic, it was actually unsinkable 🙂 We DID test that quite regularly 😉

I had SO much fun with that little boat. 🙂 I would go by myself. I would take out my friends. My brother would run circles around me with his outboard powered dingy, but I didn’t care. I always loved just sailing. Letting the wind drive me where I wanted to go. It was so engaging, so peaceful, so enjoyable. I STILL love sailing and go out every chance I can.

As a kid, I never would have imagined that I would wind up ‘sailing’ for a living (that’s what we call shipping out- ‘sailing’). I was on track to be a doctor back then. My grandparents were both pharmacists. My fathers mother was one of the first female pharmacists in the state of NY 🙂 (I definitely take after her) 😉 I made straight A’s in school and I did love studying all my subjects in class, especially math and science.

What happened was: I got sick and tired of taking the same classes over and over again in school. For example, I had been taking algebra since at least 5th grade. I always made straight A’s. I just couldn’t see the point of taking it AGAIN in 9th grade.

So, I started skipping those classes that I’d already taken. I was still making good grades. I could still keep up with the work. After all, I HAD already taken those classes (more than once). I’ll never understand why parents put up with the school systems dumbing down their kids so much!

Eventually, my family got tired of hearing about my transgressions from the school district. My grandmother decided I needed to go to a boarding school, to keep me from skipping 😉 Well, I give her credit. She tried. She really did.

Along with my Aunt Helen, my grandmother and I went on a road trip from Freeport NY, up through Niagara Falls (loved the Maid of the Mist) into Canada. We came back down through the Detroit area (went to a concert there- grandma wore earplugs 🙂 ). Visited family friends near Chicago. Stopped at a dozen fancy schools before we made it back to NY.

I have to admit, I was a total BITCH the entire trip. I didn’t want to go to any fancy-schmantzy rich kid boarding school! I would never fit in. I liked my life the way it was. I loved my town where I grew up and I could spend my days hanging out with my friends on the beach. Sailing, swimming, fishing, even sometimes jumping off the bridge to let the current carry me out to the Gulf so I could swim back in 😉

Yeah, I was also hanging out at the amusement parlor and the pool halls, sometimes the bars 😉 I was drinking and other things I wasn’t supposed to be doing.

It was really a lucky stroke of fate what happened when my grandmother got me back to her place in Freeport. She was so fed up with me after that search for an acceptable school for both me and her, she took me to the library and threw the book at me. Literally! She told me that it was a book listing ALL the accredited schools in the country and if I could find one in there that I liked, I could go there.

The book landed on a table in front of me. Opened to a page with a picture of a square-rigged ship in full sail. I was hooked! I grabbed that book and started reading that thing like my life depended on it (turned out it really did in a way).

The book gave details: the Oceanics School (http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1310&dat=19720827&id=nN1VAAAAIBAJ&sjid=5eADAAAAIBAJ&pg=6581,6541976). Based in New York City, the school would charter these large traditional sailing ships for months long cruises with their students aboard. The ship sailed around the world and the students learned to operate the ship. They held classes on navigation, seamanship, oceanography, cultural studies and languages of all the countries the ship visited.

I was so excited. I told my grandmother “that’s it!”. That’s the one I want to go to!! She was aghast!! She told me “no way”. “No way are you going to ruin your life with those damn boats like your father did!!” Up til he bought his dream boat, the “Island Girl”, my father was an engineer. A ‘respectable’ professional career man. My grandmother would never forgive the Island Girl for my fathers decision to quit the corporate world.

When I got home and told my dad about the Oceanics school, he was almost as happy about it as I was. He said “you’re going”, and “while we’re at it, we’ll send your brother too”! “You can’t skip school when you’re on a boat in the middle of the ocean” 😉 So, soon enough my brother and I were off to sail around the world. We had some absolutely fantastic adventures sailing the 3- masted schooner Ariadne from Athens to Martinique!

That trip changed my life. I returned without my brother to sail the Ariadne again from Martinique back across the Atlantic. I had some incredible experiences with some wonderful people. It DID change my life.

I will be forever grateful to the Gallaghers (especially Stephanie) who took a chance on me and then helped me SO much. Even after I graduated from the Oceanics, Stephanie was instrumental in getting me set up in the Ocean Marine Technology program in Texas that got me started on the way to earning my license.

Because of the chance to go to the Oceanics, I am STILL sailing. Almost 35 years later.  🙂 I recently upgraded to Master Any Gross Tons and can sail pretty much any ship on the ocean. I still love the traditional sailing ships best but there just aren’t enough of them around to make a living on. Too bad 🙁

So, yeah, you could say my favorite plaything when I was young is still my favorite plaything now. 🙂

Here are a couple of great links. The first one is by Tim Harris of the ship Statsraad Lehmkuhl which he sailed on as a cadet with the Oceanics in the early 70s. The next one is of the same ship in a storm. The last is a link to the ship itself, in case you’re interested in sailing her 😉

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=iokDVlHybtE

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c_YWgRBmVtY

www.lehmkuhl.no

PS- the featured photo is one I took at the Maritime Day celebration in Galveston last month. The ship in the background is one of the ones I sailed as captain on (Ensco 8500 series). I started with the sea snarks and worked my way up to those!

PPS- I forgot to add that I posted this to Terri Webster Schrandt’s Leisure Link the other day. She has a cool blog, this is the first time I’ve seen the leisure link. I’ve seen these blog ‘parties’ before but still not sure I’ve got the hang of it. Check it out over there and join in. 🙂

Songs of the Sea: Fishing With Seminole Winds

I found this video the other day when I was fiddling around looking for something else by this band. I really love Donna the Buffalo. I have a couple of their albums at home. I just got a new ipod (since I lost my old one somewhere) and I don’t have any music or anything on it yet. I was trying to find some good stuff to play.

I love this song. The words, the music, the story, and the video too. I saw that video and it reminded me so much of home. Not where I live now, but where I grew up in Florida. It was filmed in Marathon, down in the keys. My dad took the Island Girl down that way for a few years and I stayed there one summer with him.

I had a blast! The video brought back a lot of good memories. Fishing, diving, hanging out at the Dockside bar, sailing, hanging out watching the sunset with so many interesting fun characters.

It’s a sad song too, and all too true. Florida is not much like it was when I grew up there. “Progress came”…

Seminole Winds 
by John Anderson
Ever since the days of old men would search for wealth untold
They dig for silver and for gold and leave the empty holes
And way down south in the Everglades
Where the black water rolls and the Saw grass waves
The eagles fly and the otters play in the land of the Seminole

 
So blow blow Seminole wind blow like your never gonna blow again
I’m calling to you like a long lost friend but I know who you are
And blow blow from the Okeechobee  all the way up to Micanopy
Blow cross the home of the Seminole the alligators and the gar

 
Progress came and took its toll and in the name of flood control
They make their plans and they drained the land
Now the glades are going dry
And the last time I walked in the swamp I sat upon a cypress stump
I listened close and I heard the ghost of Osceola cry

Repeat #2

111 Feet Up–Climbing the Main Mast of a Fully-Rigged Tall Ship … at 9 Knots

I got this post from Gcaptain a while ago and was going to post on my blog about it. Indian Rocks Bridge beat me to it, so I’ll just re-blog. 🙂

PS: Indian Rocks bridge (not the blogger, but the actual bridge) is located very close to where I lived when we first moved to FL. I spent a lot of time at the shipyard there working on our schooner the Island Girl.

On another note, the Oceanics School (where I went to high school) used the Sorlandet for their school ship after I graduated. SO sorry I missed it!

PS- looks like this post got messed up pretty bad by the move, I just reset the links so now you can see what I was talking about again. Sorry. 🙁

Top 5 Ships Crashing into Shore

One of these days I’d really like to try this!

These ships all look fairly new, I kept wondering why the hell they’re being scrapped. Seems like a huge waste to me. 🙁

They didn’t say it in the video, but I bet this was filmed in Alang.

Watch: Flowers Bloom

Spring is coming! I’m looking forward to seeing the flowers in bloom while I’m at home this time. My garden is not the greatest, I don’t have many flowers (except on the weeds). I can’t really take care of it when I’m gone so much. But I do enjoy messing around out there in the yard, especially this time of year when the weather can be just gorgeous. 🙂

Here’re a few (googled) pictures of what Texas looks like in the Spring. People like to go leaf-peeping up north in the Fall. We like to go checking out the bluebonnets in the Spring down here. 🙂

Thanks to Ladybird Johnson for her efforts to promote Texas wildflowers. We’re all able to enjoy the beautiful scenery even more now. 🙂

I might be fired from my job because of the low price of oil, but at least the gas is cheap enough again now to go drive around looking for the best show in the fields. Maybe bring a couple of friends and have a picnic. It’s a great way to spend the day.

Law and Order?

 

Yeah, I know I’ve been doing a lot of political posts lately. I hope it’s not getting to be too much of a downer. But one of the main reasons I started blogging was to try to get a discussion going (with me or with others) about all the things politics is doing to our nation and our world.

I’ll move on to another subject soon, I promise. 😉

This video is kind of long (16 mins). I thought John Oliver did a great job of injecting some humor into a subject that is really pretty sad. Super sad when you think about it. All those millions of people having their lives ruined, just so the powers that be can say that they are fighting the war on ‘drugs’. As this video on asset forfeiture vividly shows, it is NOT a war on drugs, it IS a war on US.

This whole asset forfeiture thing is just one way they fight their war against US. The very idea that they have the right to tell a person what they can put into their bodies (eat, drink, or otherwise consume) is a humongous fraud and a HUGE violation of the principle of individual liberty that this country was founded on.

The principle that the ONLY legitimate function of government was to PROTECT those liberties that we ALL were BORN WITH simply by the fact that we are all human beings.

How far we’ve fallen. 🙁