Happy Saturday – this week I read and listened to an array of non-answers to questions regarding the status of our Administration’s Foreign Policy. Then I was reminded that former President Ronal Reagan’s birthday was yesterday, February 6th, and so, here is one of my favorite Reagan quotes;

“You and I are told we must choose between a left or right, but I suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There is only an up or down. Up to man’s age-old dream — the maximum of individual freedom consistent with order — or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism. Regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would sacrifice freedom for security have embarked on this downward path. Plutarch warned, “The real destroyer of the liberties of the people is he who spreads among them bounties, donations and benefits”.” Ronald Reagan, October 27, 1964.

And, since many of us have begun to focus on our annual months-long tax accounting maze – I just love this Reagan quote: “Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other.” It’s deadly accurate.

Working stiffs are brilliant – So, we are getting very close to our condo move-in. A couple of items have to come together and then, as Captain Picard of the Star Trek series would say; “make it so.”


One troublesome ‘bit’ was some quirkiness with the electric at the place. The breaker affecting the bathroom lights and its outlets would trip in less than two-minutes – whether or not any load was on the system or not. Ok, that’s a bad breaker. But, hold on there, wait just a minute.

Turn the dining area overhead light on (connected to a totally different breaker) and the bathroom would continue to enjoy power – even running some big power tools off that circuit, stuff like a hammer-drill or a saw-all. And do so all day, as long as the dining area light stayed on.

Call in the best, old-boy, electrician whose day-time job has him ply his trade for one of the town’s premier service companies. Some cajoling and grandfather talk and mid-week he and I worked at the condo from 5:00 to 8:00PM.

At one point the dining room fixture was hanging by its copper ground-wire. Two switch panels were torn open, and the breaker box had twelve wires, live and uncapped, sticking out (at this point, if by myself, I would have gone into panic mode). One breaker was replaced and two were added.

He worked his magic with tester and probe, got jolted once, and poked by a wire-end twice over. And me? I ran around holding a flashlight and testing switches and outlets (all critically important stuff).

That’s all it took to have the place’s electric operating as it should. Some early electrician’s short-cuts and undecipherable connections had all been cleaned up. At the end, one proud electrician went home to a late dinner. One happy condo owner did likewise.

What to do, what to do – Marcia has been stripping down the fruits of living in a place for thirty years. Much is easy to deal with. Toss, recycle, give away, transfer; we’ve both learned that drill.

Then there is a category that falls well beyond the aforementioned categories; can’t just toss. Recycle? No way! Give away, to whom? And transfer to the new place can’t happen due to space limitations.

I am talking about the heap of framed family photographs.

Coming home from somewhere I saw that the living room floor was filled with photographs. Hovering nearby was Marcia who just couldn’t wait to explain her solution to our predicament. And it’s a brilliant solution; that it is.


In the photo notice one large and imposing empty frame. That frame is the key. That frame will get a prominent place in the condo. Then, in its center will be a second hook.

All the remaining pictures will go into storage. Now, whenever a family member comes to visit we’ll retrieve a photo that has special meaning to them. That will be the; “picture of the week”. It will be hung in the center of the empty frame for all to enjoy.

Over time, most photos will be rotated through that frame. As I said, it’s brilliant.

So, get on the schedule for your visit, we’ll need a little time to select your special photo.

Now, thinking about it further has given me pause. Wait a minute, since Marcia and I are technological dinosaurs, that what she discovered is just an early version of today’s Digital Photo Frame. Who woulda thunk!

Fini – Be sure to remember that this week is Valentine’s Day. I also learned that the much advertised “Chocolate Diamond” brooches and such are really cheap (common) industrial-use diamonds – I love advertising.

Then, all day yesterday I found myself humming that horrible Kars4Kids (donate your car today) advertising ditty I happened to hear on the radio – it just wouldn’t leave my mind. Actually it got really irritating especially since I couldn’t stop it from repeating over and over. So I got curious, and looked up the charity. Do your own research, but beware. Scam might be too strong, but I believe you can do better.

Stay safe and be well, make it a great week.



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