Thursday, February 14, 2008

Valentines, snow blowers, and stuff

Happy Valentine’s Day to lovers everywhere. My Valentine and I decided a while back that we’d not exchange presents or cards this year, and we both lived up to that decision. We’ve been married for a very long time and I guess the feeling this year was simple: We’ve done that, we’ve bought that, we’ve been there. That doesn’t in any way detract from the love I have for that wonderful woman. She’s a rock, and if it weren’t for her, I wouldn’t be here today.

I won’t bore you with the morbid details, but because she remained calm and did all the right things, she was able to get the rescue to our home and the members of that unit got me into the hospital while all the time my body was draining itself of blood. For you who have a little knowledge of the body, I had suffered what is commonly called a Triple-A. But my wife never lost her composure as I lay in a heap on the floor. While waiting patiently for the rescue team, she called our daughter who met us at the hospital.

I’m writing this so you know how it all turned out. And through the whole 40 days of hospitalization, she was there. Sometimes only in spirit, but she never left me. And she still takes care of this old man and makes sure I’m doing what I need to do to wake up tomorrow morning. She remains a rock and strongly by my side supporting me. No man could ask for more. I only hope I do enough little things that let her know how I feel. And Oh Yes, I tell her often.

So on this special day of love, her presence is all I need to make it a great day.


A quickie update on my snowblower: I’ve had a few very unkind words and thoughts about what I’ve been calling the “world’s worst snowblower.” I mentioned a few days ago that I have a friend wintering in Florida and long distance he diagnosed what he thought could be the problem. I followed his suggestions and yesterday morning, with snow piled up around here, I tried out the machine. Holy Smokes! One pass and wherever I blew snow, I had a black driveway. I couldn’t believe it, but my friend’s suggestions apparently worked. We’ll know for sure if we get any more snow this winter. So, Thank you, Richard. I’m glad to have your as a friend.


I don’t know how it turned out yet, but a Legislative committee held hearings today on Maine’s drivers’ licenses. Anyone from anywhere can get a license in Maine. And, as you know, a license is used for identification. Maine doesn’t even require legal residency in the state or the nation to get a license. No Social Security number? No problem. 999-99-9999 works in Maine. Ask any of the five thousand license holders who have that number. Today’s hearing was designed to discuss Maine residency requirements, i.e., a requirement that an applicant must show proof of Maine residency. Proof of being a legal resident of the United States wasn’t included. But, as I said, I haven’t seen any reports yet of what was discussed at the hearing. Holding one, though, I guess is a start.


Finally, a report out of Augusta today says 89 of Maine’s school districts spent too much money on education. When the state agreed, as a result of a citizens’ initiative, to fund 55% of education costs, school districts were required to use savings from their own expenditures resulting from increased state payments into property tax relief. For the most part, that didn’t happen and today’s report says that many districts exceeded state expectations on educational costs. This report should be good for a few days of interesting discussions in various on-line forums.