Friday, November 28, 2008

Its finally over

It rained here for 3-4 days in a row. Thunder....never did see any lightening.

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This is a BMI Airbus after take off from the airport. I like how you can see the contrails on the wing tips.

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Someone opened the flood gates! This is just off Tropicana north of the airport.

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The ducks liked it.

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Thursday, November 27, 2008

Just in time


For Thanksgiving!

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I'll also be adding a Glock +2 extension to each magazine. Not so much for the added rounds, but for the extra length on the grip. It allows you a place to put you little finger.

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For size reference.

Karen will be getting something other than a Glock, likely a revolver. She is unable to pull the slide back on the Glock. It would leave her wielding a very nice looking, expensive, blunt instrument to fend off an attacker....thats not good!

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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Let it rain...


It has been raining here for 2 days now and is expected to rain until Saturday. Since the last measurable(.1 inch) rain we got was back in March or May, it is welcomed! So far they say we have gotten about .3 of an inch. At least they are predicting 70F on December 1st! Just in time for me to go back to work

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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tommorrow is the day


I have a doctors apointment. Oh wait, thats not is. Actually my 72 hour "cooling off" period will be over. 4PM to be exact. Assuming I pass the FBI backgroung check I will be the proud owner of a brand new Glock 26 9mm.

For the most part I have always had a firearm of some sort in the house. For a long time it was just a 12 guage shot gun. In later years when I was working for a certain company I bought a .357 Taurus revolver, and at one point also had a S&W 4506. Upon moving to Vegas, and being unsure of the gun laws between here and there, I sold it before I left Michigan. .
Rightly or wrongly, gun owners are very afraid of an Obama Presidency.I always intended to purchase a new one in Nevada, but just never got around to it.

On Sunday I went to the gun store and bought a Glock 26 9mm. I plan to get my CCW in the next few months. It costs $100.25 for the permit plus the cost of a certified CCW class that ranges from $60-$150. Most state CCWs are also recognized in Nevada, although if you are in Clark County for more than 24 hours you must register your handgun with the LVMPD(its free). While taking my CCW class here in Vegas I can also apply for a CCW in Utah and Florida. Between the three I would be legal to carry in over 33 states. Since you can't fly with a firearm, I see no point to it though.

Back in Michigan I had what was known as a BHB CCW. That stood for Bank-Home-Bank. It allowed me to carry any time I was on duty including the drive to and from work, in uniform or not. Most employees I worked with had "While on duty and in uniform" restrictions on thier CCWs. Because I did not live in Wayne County, which would not issue a BHB CCW, and instead lived in Monroe County, I was able to easily obtain the BHB CCW. Since then, Michigan has become a "Shall issue" state also so I don't think they even offer BHB CCWs anymore.

Nevada is also a "shall issue" state meaning that they have to prove why you shouldn't be able to carry a gun. In Nevada you do not even have to register your guns....not even handguns.....unless you live in Clark County(Las Vegas) which of course, I do.

The only place you can't carry in Nevada is government building...courts, schools, post office ect. Its even legal to carry in places marked "No Firearms". They can only ask you to leave. Ofcourse if you don't leave, you will be arrested for trespassing.

I selected the Glock 26, also known as a "Baby Glock" because it is small...very small....for a 9mm anyways. Thus they are easy to conceal. They also have, as do all Glocks, have a reputation for reliability. The customers in the gun shop were in, to put it nicely, a frenzy. Rightly or wrongly, gun owners are very afraid of an Obama Presidency. The gun store owner was hyping a 500% tax increase for ammunition that Obama talked about a decade or so ago. The gun show ads out here are hyping that it may be your last chance to buy a gun before Obama takes office. While the prospects of a 500% increase in ammo tax and an oughtright ban on firearms seems extremlty remote, there is little doubt that Obama is anti-gun. I think that he will have so much on his plate that gun control is a long way off. While the prospect of an Obama Presidency did not make me go buy a firearm, it certainly made me do it sooner than I may have otherwise. We will also be getting Karen one. We will have to see if she can handle shooting
the Glock 26 or not.

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Its kind of funny


Not long ago all you heard about was how American were spending like drunken sailors, living off thier credit cards and home equity loans. The mantra was, back then, spend less and save more. Americans were too far in debt and sinking further everyday.

Now the government has just made $200 billion available to banks to try to increase the availability of credit for American consumers for credit cards, auto loans and the like. Isn't that part of what got us in this mess???Now the government has just made $200 billion available to banks to try to increase the availability of credit for American consumers for credit cards, auto loans and the like. Isn't that part of what got us in this mess???

The housing bubble has now burst and the government is doing all it can to re inflate that bubble. It was called a bubble for a reason. That reason is that the increase in housing prices had no real foundation. In other words, housing prices should not have been raising that fast. The government is now trying to stabilize and or reverse the declining housing prices. It wasn't long ago that people were complaining that no one could afford a house anymore. Not that it stopped anyone from loaning money for them to buy houses. That fact has now caught up with America.

So now the government thinks the solution is to pour more money into what is, essentially, a black hole. So far the spending is totaling about 2.5 to 3 trillion dollars between all of the bail outs/rescue plans proposed. One thing you can count on is if the government says it wants to spend 2.5 trillion, it will likely spend 5 trillion. That does not even include the additional spending that Obama promised and is still proposing such as health care, tax cuts, green initiatives, education.

The government has no idea how to get us out of this mess. The only way out of it is to take the pain. You can have a lot of pain for a little while, or a little pain for a long while, but you will have the pain no matter how much the government spends.

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Monday, November 24, 2008

Bail Out?


To bail out or not to bail out. That is the question. The big three are in big trouble!Recently they came to Congress, hat in hand, asking for money to get them by. I have been against all of these bail outs from the get go. Decisions have consequenses. Or at least, they used to. Bought a house you can't afford, no problem the government will bail you out! Decided to have 70-80% of your profits derived from large suvs and never anticipate the need to diversify your profit base? Didn't buy a house because you knew you couldn't afford it? Sucks to be you!.No problem the government will bail you out. Make risky no doc(aka liar loans) to people who didn't have the money to pay for them? No problem the government will bail you out. Didn't buy a house because you knew you couldn't afford it? Sucks to be you! Bought a house you could afford to pay for using a conventional loan? Sucks to be you! You're going to bail out all of the above!

While I am against all of these bail outs, it is hard to justify bailing out wall street, and then turn around and deny the big three any help. Personally I do not think the near 75 billion they are asking for will do much more than delay the inevitable. I predict that within 3-5 years one of the big three will be gone regardless of how much money the government gives them.

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Saturday, November 22, 2008

Its official

Las Vegas is in the grips of a serial killer. To date I think 4 or 5 bodies have been found out in the desert area surrounding Las Vegas and Henderson. The last was found yesterday near the Henderson Airport. Several if not all of the bodies, were burned in an attempt to hide evidence. One was found not far from Red Rock Canyon. Naturally the details are sketchy at this point and the police do not seem to be very informative. You would think it would be all over the news, but it is not.

As best as I can tell all of the victims were "working girls" picked up in or around the various truck stops here in Vegas. To me it matters not! They are still people and do not deserve this! In addition, it may only be a matter of time until the next victim is not a "working girl".

The main truck stops here are on Topicanna west of the I-15. Only a mile or so west of the strip so visitors, beware!

The other main one is at Cheyenne and Losee. It is in North Las Vegas and far from the strip.

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Hasta La Vista Baby!!

Nancy left on Wed and Ottis left on Friday. We had a great time as usual. Its always a little sad when people leave. You kind of get that "empty nesters" syndrome. We comfort ourselves in the knowledge that we have more people coming out in about 5 weeks and that its 25F in Detroit and dropping.
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We have been unusually warm here in Vegas. Our highs have been around 75F to 80F with lows in the 55F-60F range. Not too shabby. Thats about 10F above average for this time of year.

I'm off work for the next 9 days, on vacatoin. Karen will be working most of those days though so we will not do a whole lot. I had to use my vacation time before January, or lose it.

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The Copper Keg

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The day after Nancy left we went to the Copper Keg for dinner. As usual the food was great.

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Afterwards me,Ottis and Karen sat outside. Here you cn see me and Ottis doing our part to conserve water!

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Here is Carly sporting her new outfit!

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It amazed me how fast Carly took to Ottis. After I would leave in the morning for work, she would lay up on the couch next to Ottis and sleep while he wathed TV. She loved him! I took months for her to just not bark at me whenever she saw me. With Ottis it took two days!

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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Buffet update

Moved Southpoint's Garden Buffet to the best buffet in town. For the best value and very good food. Very few things did I try and not like.

I added Sams Town's Firelight Buffet as Pretty Good Buffet. Again a good value and good food.

I added The Sahara's Sharah Buffet as the worst buffet in town. At $6.99 it is cheap yet, upon leaving, you get the sense that you still paid too much. What selection of food they did have, all tasted the same. The pizza tasted like the mashed pottatoes that tasted like the prime rib that tasted like the cheesecake. This could have been ok if whatever that taste was tasted good. It really didn't though.
I suppose that is a bit harsh but I think its true.

That said, it is "food", so if your in Vegas and you need to eat cheap, it can't be beat.

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Hanging out with Lindsay

We have gotten into the habit of stopping by Cactus Joes on they way back from Red Rock Canyon. It is a 7 acre nursery located off of Blue Diamond Rd. Ostensibly we went there last night because Betty wanted us to buy her something from there, but we all knew what the real reason was. We wanted to see Lindsay! As soon as we got there I began to look for her. Most of the times I've been there she has been in bed covered from head to toe under her blankets, so I set right off to where she often sleep and poked around in the lumpy blankets hoping to find her snuggled up in bed. She was no where to be found.

Karen brought one of the workers to help find Lindsay and he began to poke and prod the lump of blankets that moments before was being searched by me. After a few pokes we heard a gruntting sound and we knew we had found her!(Anyone that knows me would not be suprised I didn't find her in the blankets even though she was there!)

Here is a picture of Lindsay Loham after being woke up from a, no doubt, well deserved nap!

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Lindsay, AKA "Pig" by the staff, never even moved......she just grunted here and there as I petted her.

Along came Ottis who, after deciding that we might as well pull up a chair because we were not going anywhere anytime soon, began to look about the Gallery room. He spied some little candies on the table and decided to have one. He grabbed one and turned to face outside while opening the candy up.

Lindsay, upon hearing the rattle of the candy wrapper being opened, bolted out of bed and came up behind Ottis. When Ottis turned around he saw a pig staring at him and it scared the crap out of him.....


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Here is Ottis feeding Lindsay a "piggie" bone.



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Here is Nancy feeding her also.





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Pig decided to go hang out with Ottis for a bit.





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A close up of Lindsay Loham.





They also have a large collection of dogs.



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Here is one of them. They are all "rescue" dogs in that they are about to be "put down", as it were. Even Lindsay was rescued from immenant death.

They are lucky that they got to go from certain death to what must be heaven on earth for them.

The staff here are increadably nice. Lindays is treated as part of the family. They even have a piggie door for her to go into and out of the house as she wishes.

Some pig quotes in honor of Lindsay.....

Winston Churchill :

"Always remember, a cat looks down on man, a dog looks up to man, but a pig will
look man right in the eye and see his equal."
George Bernard Shaw:

“I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig, you get dirty; and besides,
the pig likes it.”

Martina Navratilova:

“The difference between involvement and commitment is like ham and eggs. The
chicken is involved; the pig is committed.”

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Southpoint, Red Rock, Bellagio

That was out itenary for Saturday. A slow, relaxing day.

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We started out with brunch at the Southpoint. $12 a person and you get omlettes cooked to order along with all the usual breakfast food. They also serve turkey, prime rib, fried shrimp. It was awesome.

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This was my plate before I began to devour it. Hard to tell in the photo, but that omlette is almost 2" thick!!

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Then we headed to Red Rock Canyon.

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Leaving the visitor's center.

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Ottis taking pictures. The big problem with going this time of year is the crowds. There is virtually no parking available. I like going in August when we are the only ones dumb enough to be out there.....

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I like this picture. Its often difficult to take this type of picture considering all the different exposure requirement competing against each other. I tried to exposed the camera for the a compramise between the mountains and the sunset. I used my flash(set way down) to properly expose Ottis. It came out pretty nice I think.

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Here is Nancy trying to piss off whatever is living in that hole.

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Here we are at the Bellagio. I think they re do the atrium with every change in season.

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No trip to the Bellagio is complete without seeing the water show.

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Waiting for the valet to bring our car.

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Fremont Street

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Getting ready to head out to Fremont.

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Tonight they had the Firefighter's World Championship. Firefighters from as far away as Austraila came to compete against each other.
Because of this, there was only one band playing at Fremont. The crowd was somewhat smaller and more reserved than usual. It brought back a lot of good memories for me from the many Ford ERT Challanges I attended over the years.

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This was the one band that played that night. They were pretty good, but not great.

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