Wednesday, December 19, 2012

My thoughts on gun controls

I personally doubt that the insurance for guns idea has a lot of merit.

Do you know where most people get their guns?

They are handed down, generation to generation. Most of them are OLD, but a well maintain and seldom used gun of any type will still function and kill whatever it is aimed at when the trigger is pulled.

Only one or two of the many guns I've owned were purchased new. There is nothing to reveal who has them on hand NOW. They all had serial numbers but those numbers are not written down anywhere or traceable back to the original or current owner.

To have guns insured, they, as with cars and trucks or any vehicle, need registration numbers kept on file. Do you really believe that we suspicious gun owners, who have NEVER trusted government control of anything when it comes to self defense, will voluntarily provide someone with serial numbers, model numbers, calibers and manufacturing dates related to our most treasured tools? And tools are what we are talking about here. They are viewed like a common pocket knife in my base culture. They are little more than a remote controlled heavy club used to subdue living food or hostile forces that threaten us.

The rifle, shotgun and some pistols I own today have not seen the light of day in many years. I will not part with them so long as I have breath in this old body. They have more sentimental value to me than any other possession. There are countless, good memories attached to them. One needs to have been a hunter providing needed meat for a family to understand such thinking.

There are many who want our military to have the most modern weapons available, and yet, those same folk think all we potential, domestic militia members need only muzzle loading muskets. That's ridiculous! If we ever needed to assemble and defend this country against invasion forces or domestic rebels, we NEED the latest weaponry too.

I do believe that limiting access to certain kinds of ammunition may be one means of controlling the carnage but, come on people, making me sign a registration book when I purchase a 50 bullet box of .22 long rifle bullets or box of shot-shells for hunting contributes nothing to the effort. The bullets I have now are so old, I often doubt they will fire when I need them. BUT, I have them and I feel this strange sense of security here at home because I do.

There are no children here to worry about and I have instructed the two women who live here how to load and fire the pistols, rifle and shotgun and to handle them safely. The weapons and ammunition are stored separately and none of them sit around already loaded unless we experience some neighborhood criminal activity such as area break-ins and home invasions. At which point I will have something handy at all times.

Don't come to my home with evil in your mind. I have guns and know how to use them. More than that, I am willing to do so.

My guns are advanced hammers and perceived threats to life and property are nails to me. Have guns ... do not travel!

Whoa! I feared this might happen ... I've stayed on the topic for too long.
An idea just came to me!  I'll run it up the flagpole and see if anyone salutes it.

Let's outlaw the sales of ALL firearms of any type to individuals.  There are already enough guns out here for civil purposes.  Share what you have with friends, family and needy neighbors. Give them away or sell them as you see fit, but one person only needs so many guns, anything other than that is a little weird or crazy (if you know what I mean.) I know it's hard to resist the urge to possess the latest and greatest gadgets but no Deer I've ever seen requires a mini-gatlin gun to bring it down or for that matter, a fully automatic rifle with a banana clip of 30 bullets.  Give the animals a chance and learn to be a better shot with a single shot rifle.  Instead of spraying 30 cal, soft-point projectiles around in a wood lot, be sure of your target and the background before you pull the trigger. AND, for your own sake, wear some blaze orange on your body, preferably your head and shoulders.

Should we ever be invaded by foreign forces, we could go to a nearby civilian armory, set-up by every city and town in this country, where weapons and ammo would be available to every able bodied person that volunteers to defend their areas.  That way, arms and ammo manufacturers would stay in business ... a booming business for as long at it takes to stockpile said armories and after that, the regular market demand would still be there.
Let's create some more badly needed jobs out here people! Also, established armories would need to be expanded as population numbers in an area grow. That's a sustainable market source too.   

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Everything you want to know about daylight shifting

What time is it? 
Does anybody really know? 
How about you? 
Is it daylight saving time or regular time?
Would it matter to you if we did away with daylight saving time?

Speaking for myself, I love late summer.  Isn't it great when daylight lasts till almost 10 o'clock?  If you are an early riser, as I am, that gives you a lot of daylight to work and play in or simply sit on the patio, under the awing and relax.

At this point in time, my body's inner clock is so confused.  It's not sure if it's daylight saving time or regular time.

I became curious about the matter and did some searching on the Internet to see if I could get down to the bottom of it.  All that effort resulted in was confusing me even more.

I just read that Benjamin Franklin was the first to come up with the idea.  Who knows how accurate that fact is?  I also read this morning that some Indian chief claimed that the US government was being silly.  He said that someone in our government actually believes that you can cut 1 foot off the top of a blanket, sew it on the bottom and make the blanket longer.  That allegory gave me a chuckle.

Here's a link to a site that claims to tell all the history of "daylight shifting."

The above site is so interesting, it compares to beginning to read a book that one is not able to put down until it is completed.  So, you have been warned.
Proceed at your own risk.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Wading through very muddy water

I suppose it could be that I'm extremely dense in the head and I'm not able to imagine the problems connected with obtaining a picture ID one should be using while voting. Also I may not be able to accept that there are places in this nation where people can go to vote and not have to provide a picture ID and prove that they are who they say they are.  I have always had to show identification and sign my name before I was allowed into the balloting booth.  I guess it's just that I can't accept that we folk here in Kentucky are more advanced than the rest of the nation in that respect.

Doesn't anyone else care that there may be illegal aliens out there voting in our elections?
As relaxed as everyone else seems to be about the matter we could be having extraterrestrials voting next Tuesday.  Personally I believe that a person should be made to stop voting after they die.

It doesn't appear that anything is going to be decided about picture IDs involved in the voting process this election cycle.  It would be nice though if someone picked up the ball and ran with it, and got something passed that will change this state of affairs during the next four years.

Regardless of the outcome of this election, I suspect that less than 50 percent of the people will be unhappy and the other 75 percent will be tickled to death.  No!  There's nothing wrong with my math.  It must be broken down that way to justify the number of registered voters as compared to the actual number of votes placed.  If you're really paying attention you must realize that there something hinky going on somewhere.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Cruel and or unusual punishment

Just as in the use of the phrase "separation of church and state" by anyone discussing our constitution, use of the phrase "cruel and unusual punishment" is also as likely to be brought up by someone desiring to call attention to a specific criminal case or the punishment thereof.

It's hard to believe that the phrase was used as far back as King Henry in Old England. If I'm understanding what I've recently read pertaining to the topic during a Google search, depending upon when and where a society existed, whether or not certain sentences were cruel and/or unusual punishment might differ greatly.

Being beheaded or drawn and quartered was widely accepted punishment for any of an ancient King's enemies. Here in this country, for a great many years, being hung in public was commonplace. For most military tribunals, a Firing Squad was the favorite means. For Pirates, it was walking the plank or riding the blade of a wielded cutlass. But, I suppose, as a modern day society, we here in the U.S. of A. have evolved in leaps and bounds.

I for one don't care for what we have become in that respect.

Judge Roy Bean was judge, jury and executioner for the law west of the Pecos. He string up two or three rustlers and horse thieves before breakfast each day. He was cheap and efficient. We don't know if he was always right or if justice was truly being served but mostly, only the accused protested the practice very much. As some will readily tell you ... We have come a long way Baby!

That may be true also, but the question is: "Where have we come to, long or short distance?"

Yesterday, I began to hear little tidbits in the news about some convicted murderer being granted the funds for a sex change operation while still in prison by a broad-minded judge in Pennsylvania. Broad-minded I guess! His mind is so broad it compares to the Atlantic or Pacific oceans. Refusing said prisoner his request has been compared by certain persons, whose mental stability is highly suspect, as cruel and unusual punishment. Wait a minute while I throw up my breakfast. HURL! NOPE! that didn't help one bit.


I provide the above link as the source for some search results you may want to peruse should you view this post as unbelievable or not being real.

Monday, July 23, 2012

What does "spirituality" mean?

God is a Spirit and the most accurate way He can communicate with us is through and by our spirit. Did you know you have one? Have you ever acknowledged its existence? There are multitudes of people who haven’t.

Human language is such a crude means of communication. When it fails us, we resort to a touch, a caress or a facial expression, a certain look in our eyes, perhaps a kiss or when all else has failed in expression, an embrace that lingers. All these forms of expression are attempts to communicate and sometimes, we are successful. Without using our lips and tongue to form one word, without paper and ink, we manage to express our feelings and we are understood. Can you explain how? It is enough for most to know that they have made themselves understood and they don't bother to try and understand the process which allowed it to take place.

The female of our species seems to utilize the ability more often than the males. Those who are educated and believed to know about such matters have explained that the female spends more time relating to the world around them out of the right side of their brain. They are said to be more intuitive. Could we say that females are just more in tune with their spirits? That trait has been translated by some to mean that they are more sensitive, more tuned in to the feelings of others.

I wonder, is there a likelihood the human spirit is somehow connected to the right side of the brain? That could explain why creative ability is attributed to the right side of the brain.

A multitude of conclusions has been arrived at concerning the right side of the human brain. Left handed persons are said to be more creative, more sensitive, more in tune with reality. I believe that creativity is closely related to spirituality. In my own language, I have attempted to explain the creative process as one that involves connection with the spirit, which in turn, is connected to a spiritually creative stream which emanates from God Himself. Is the right side of our brain a kind of spiritual antennae? Did God create it with that purpose in mind?

Have you ever been in a situation where someone you know has experienced a tragedy, something like the loss of a loved one, and you go to them, hoping to be a comfort in some way, but once you have arrived at their side, you were unable to come up with any words which you believed would help? You position yourself as close as possible to them and reaching out, lay an arm across their slumping form and find yourself overcome with emotion? Neither one of you are able to speak; there are only moans of agony and grief, and yet, somehow, there is communication. Who can deny that such communication is spiritual in nature?

In most of the world’s religions, spirituality is a common theme. The word doesn’t mean the same thing to everyone. I see the word often as I surf around the Internet and read what others have on their mind. One person even implied that spirituality can be “Messy.” I believe they may be correct. I also believe that my own thinking on the subject is a bit messy. God knows I’ve struggled a long time trying to put my thoughts into understandable terms. Did anyone out there hear me yet? Do you believe me to be way out there on the far side of logic and reason? If so...would you take a stab at it yourself and help me to not be so messy?

Address the subject as best you can and post it somewhere, then Please send me a link. That would be great. But please don’t repeat any church’s doctrine. Tell me what you REALLY believe or have personally experienced. Yes! Tell me a good story...that’s the ticket.

Friday, June 29, 2012

When weather forecasters and their warnings fail us

June 29. 2012

It was almost 100 degrees all afternoon. This old man is neither English or mad so he doesn't go out in the noonday sun. I'm a slow learner but I learned to respect the summer sun as a young fellow.

So, I was alternating between a golf tournament and the end of "Gone in 60 seconds." Suddenly the wife bolts into the room and tells me to look out the window behind me. I did as she asked and was shocked to see the tree in our front yard swaying heavily in the high winds that came out of nowhere. Dead branches were strewn here and there beneath it and still green leaves filled the windward blasts.

We both headed for the patio door, fearing what we might find as we did. Would the awning be tattered shreds? Would it still be attached to the house? It was neither of those but it was being mightily tested. It has stood up to 30 MPH gusts several times this year. It hasn't been rolled up for over a month. I've discovered that it can handle stiff winds and heavy rains so long as one side of it has been lowered to keep the rain moving downward toward one end.

BUT ... it can't hold up to 65 and 70 MPH straight line winds. All four of the large Hibiscus plants were blown over and starting to roll out into the yard. Patio chairs and cushions were sliding toward the east side of the patio. The dog came outside with us just in case some play ensued. The flying furniture and flapping awning sent him back toward the door with his tail between his legs. I was tempted to join him but I must try to salvage our Sunsetter.

I made the mistake of unlocking one of the side supports in preparation for rolling the awning up. The wind gusts tried to beat me to death or at least break one of my fragile bones, so I locked the side bar back again. Then I tried lowering first one side adjustment and then the other, trying to reduce the underneath area of awning which the wind could affect, thereby decreasing the stress on the whole assembly. That seemed to help a little. Maureen held down one side while I held down the other. We managed to keep it from bucking so violently, hoping that the winds would subside shortly. I don't know know how long we held on but as we hoped, the wind did diminish somewhat and I was ready to try rolling the awning up again.

I asked Gail to go around the front of the awning roll-bar and to try to keep it from raising up to quickly by leaning as heavily on it as she possibly could. Then I inserted the crank handle in its socket and unlocked the sidebar again, instructing Maureen to do the same to her side. I started cranking and the awning, even though it had sustain some damage on my side, began to roll up. I was thrilled beyond words as it finally moved up against the house. With that I was able to straighten the damaged pieces somewhat. It was enough for now. I would take a closer look at the damage tomorrow and see if I might affect a better repair.

As soon as I was able to slow down and catch my breath, my mind went to thoughts of our local weather casters. Where were they as the threatening storm front approached our area? They had never hesitated to interrupt our regular television programs for the smallest storm. Steve Riley should have been there on my screen long before the first strong gusts caused our awning to flap even a little. They used to sound the sirens when a strong thunderstorm approached but they said that was causing too much confusion and decided that it would only be sounded in the event of a tornado threat.

So here we were, as the mercy of the awful winds. A tree in our neighbor's back yard was snapped in half. OK ... it was a dead tree. Too many birds perching in it might have brought it down. Still, there's no excuse for this to happen here.

Many homes lost power. Trees were down all over the place. That's probably what caused the loss of power to all those homes. Thank God our power stayed on. No air conditioned house to retreat to when we got overheated from trying to save the awning and our plants and our patio furniture. Good Grief Charlie Brown!

I really am more ticked off than I sound here about the lack of weather warnings.
First the Supreme Court allows ObamaCare to survive.
Then CNN gets the initial report about the decision concerning it WRONG.
What's the world coming to?
I hope all of you got through the winds and storms unharmed. No real damage to house or other personal property.
I guess we'll live and limp along with a bent up awning support frame ... but we will not be happy for a spell. We have our health and one another. That's enough!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

A new way of looking at our world that gives one needed perspective

I DID NOT write what follows here. In fact, I can't even pinpoint the exact date of its composition and inclusion in one of my personal, on-line journals. I discovered it this morning while I was trying to find something I wrote about a certain type of bean vine for a fellow blogger. I may never find that but I just had to repost this item. I KNOW a lot of the facts included in it have changed somewhat with the passage of time but I also know they haven't changed enough to lessen the impact of the contents. Simply read it and ponder how you personally look at the rest of the world around you. Does it look the same now? I don't know how it possibly could.

A glimpse of the world . . . one that provides a new perspective and understanding.

If we could shrink the earth's population to a village of precisely 100 people, with all the existing human ratios remaining the same, it would look something like the following:

There would be:

57 Asians

21 Europeans

14 from the Western Hemisphere, both north and south

8 Africans

52 would be female

48 would be male

70 would be non-white

30 would be white

70 would be non-Christian

30 would be Christian

89 would be heterosexual

11 would be homosexual

6 people would possess 59% of the entire world's wealth and all 6 would be from the United States.

80 would live in substandard housing

70 would be unable to read

50 would suffer from malnutrition

1 would be near death; 1 would be near birth

1 (yes, only 1) would have a college education

1 would own a computer

When one considers our world from such a compressed perspective, the need for acceptance, understanding and education becomes glaringly apparent. The following is also something to ponder...

If you woke up this morning with more health than illness... you are more blessed than the million who will not survive this week.

If you have never experienced the danger of battle, the loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture, or the pangs of starvation are ahead of 500 million people in the world.

If you can attend a church meeting without fear of harassment, arrest, torture, or are more blessed than three billion people in the world.

If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof overhead and a place to sleep... you are richer than 75% of this world.

If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish someplace... you are among the top 8% of the worlds wealthy.

If your parents are still alive and still married, you are very rare.

If you can read this message, you just received a double blessing in that someone was thinking of you, and furthermore, you are more blessed than over two billion people in the world that cannot read at all.

Someone once said: What goes around comes around.

Work like you don't need the money.

Love like you've never been hurt.

Dance like nobody's watching.

Sing like nobody's listening.

Live like it's Heaven on Earth.


Talk about a new perspective!

I look at those last five lines of spirit-lifting encouragement and I realized that they describe my own personal outlook on life and how one should live it. If you can read those lines and honestly say that you are living your life exactly that way, you are truly liberated and life as well as humanly possible. It also means that you are one immensely blessed individual.

Also, I can tell you that I don't need to wait for some special occasion such as Thanksgiving Day to be motivated toward gratitude and thankfulness. It's the main reason I feel free to sing and dance so often. Most of the time there is no one around to watch me or listen but I wouldn't care if there was. Both are a reaction to what I am feeling inside.

I wouldn't have you believe that I am in that state every moment of every day but I can say that those events are becoming more and more common as I go along.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Confessions of a blessed man

April 3rd, 2012. It's not a day that's special, or important to anyone except those who associate some special event in their life with it. e.g. I had a son born on tomorrow's date and it too is special in its own way. But today is our wedding anniversary; our 41st wedding anniversary.

I was 30 years old when Maureen and I were married. She was only 18. Some would think nothing of the fact that one day after we were married, a son was born ... but only to me, not Maureen and his birth was in 1967, not 1971. His mother was my second wife. When it came to wedded bliss, one might conclude that I had known very little of it. But, thank God, I was learning about life all the while and experience had a value of its own when it came to the future.

Confidence was not something I was familiar with up to the day Maureen and I were wed. Bad choices and other personal short-comings resulted in some major failures for me. I thought I had been "IN LOVE" twice before. Neither of those times ending up badly gave me cause to believe that I was correct about my feelings of being "IN LOVE" the third time. Something was different about the third time that I couldn't pin point exactly. I WAS older and also hoped that I had been paying attention, learning what I had done wrong, or could have possibly done better than I had in the other two relationships.

And now, 41 years later, no one is happier than myself about how it has transpired. I can honestly state that there has never been one moment that I have said or thought ... I wish I had never gotten married the third time. I will continue to tell anyone who will listen that marrying Maureen K. Houp was the wisest decision this fortunate, blessed man has ever made.

Did Maureen and I discover some unknown secret formula for establishing and maintaining the perfect marriage? Well ... NO! I don't think we did. Then to what do we attribute the longevity and joyous contentment we have known over all those years? I'll need some time to ponder that question. There must be several thousand reasons that run through my mind every time I stop to contemplate our situation. Our daughter, Kellie will tell you that we ARE the perfect pair. Over the years I've heard her make such a statement to a large number of people.

Over the years, I have written hundreds of thousands of words trying to explain just why things have been thus and so. I've written a score of love poems for Maureen and composed endless compositions about our successful relationship.

I have not however, boiled it down to any one specific thing. How could I? Was it fate or destiny? I'm not sure. I have, on several occasions described our union as Heaven sent, believing that God had a hand in it ... and I still do think HE did.

At one point I DID ask God into my own life, to allow Him to show me the right path to follow, to listen closely for His voice as I made my way through this world. I believe He has and will continue to do so.

I've lost count of the times I have thanked Him for bringing Maureen into my life. The same can be said for all the miracles I've seen Him do on my behalf. Our union produced one child, a daughter, who today is a Godly woman, a daughter any parents would be proud to claim as their own. More than a year ago, I feared we were going to lose Maureen, that her failing heart would take her from us. But God heard the prayers of those who loved and cared about her and brought her back from the brink of death.

So, today we celebrate another year together. It hasn't been the best year we have know but thank God, we are still together, able to say "Happy Anniversary" once more and remember all that we have shared together.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Addiction is ...................


It enters our physical bodies through every natural orifice. It affects the physical and emotion aspects of the temporary host we use to interact with the world around us.

It will steal your good name, your character and your soul.

It will cause many of those that love you, to wash their hands of you and shun you.

It will cause many to rue the day that you came into their lives and the world.

Some will even wish you would die as a result of your addictions.

A great many WILL realize the fulfillment of that wish and come to know great regret and remorse for their feelings and thoughts about you.

I don't believe God had any of that in mind when He created us.

Which one of us can say they have no addictions and be truthful?

Today, there is a great void in the ether. It is there as a result of the deaths of so many due to their addictions. So many of them were gifted as few have been. They were great, wonderful, talented and as weak in their flesh as every other one of us. We are aware of their absence because they were icons, role models, stars of one public arena or another. Their names are household names. Everyone knew, respected and looked up to them as examples.

The fortunes their gifts has brought them could not protect them from the desires of their flesh. The truth is, it enabled them, making it easier to afford, acquire, abuse and share with those close to them, who were also addicts.

The addicts are not alone in what they give up and lose to sustain their addiction, for eventually, their addiction leads to an early demise and those of us who have loved and followed their talent and the wondrous treasures they gave to the world also know great loss. We grieve just as their immediate family members grieve. We shed torrents of tears, sobbing so intensely we feel as if we will die also because of the loss. Our hearts are no less broken than are the hearts of parents and siblings of the departed.

We will miss you terribly dear Whitney. May God be merciful to you. We know He loved you.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Of cars and subsequent repair enigmas.

I honestly do not know what it is that mechanics and dealership service department agents detect in a customer that tells them, "This person is ignorant when it comes to anything mechanical, especially their car ... so I can tell them anything or use their ignorance to make more money for my employer and make myself look better in the eyes of my boss."

It happens to women more than men but there are some men that know as little as certain women when either of them are dealing with well experienced service representatives. Now, it is not my intent to paint all dealership service people with the same wide brush, but I know for a fact, there are some who will take advantage of the unwary and unknowing, just because they can.

It's the same with anyone that sells cars. If you saw any of the episodes of "Men of a Certain Age" you probably witnessed the goings-on behind the scenery of a normal car dealership. Nothing matters much but the numbers. Salesmen will cut one another's throats to make that next sale and collect their commissions.

I've been a dedicated believer in the Toyota brand when it comes to value and dependability. I've always held the belief that I got my dollars worth with every buck I spent with them and that even extended to their service department. I only think like that because I'm a male of the species and know quite a lot about mechanical devices. My dealership's service department had one woman service representative for the last five years or so. She was a delight to do business with. She was a southern girl; I loved her accent and always believed I was getting the best treatment my dealership had to offer because she was taking care of me. I always asked for her every time I called for any kind of maintenance or repairs. Last week, I found out that she no longer works for my dealership. She's working for another dealership just down the road from there now. I hated to hear that and instantly was wondering WHY she left. Was it her decision or a mutual one or did my dealership's managing staff fire her or make it impossible for her to stay. She was good at her job; knew a lot about the products she was working with. Knowing how office politics works and how jealous some men can be when it comes to any kind of competition in the work place, especially when the competition comes from a female, I wouldn't put anything past them.

Getting to the reason I felt the need to write and post this blog entry ... My daughter's latest service department experience. Here's some facts.

She drives a 2007 Toyota Carolla because her parents believe it is the car for her and she trusts our opinions about such matters. We have been involved with several of her car purchases since she got out on her own. We raised her to be as independent as possible in life. Still, she is our baby girl. You know what I mean if you are a parent, especially of an only child that happens to be a daughter. Parents will worry or be concerned for any child that has left the nest and is out on their own, all alone and doing their best to make a life for themselves, but it is different for fathers who have daughters. Don't ask me to explain that last statement, it just is ... that's all.

She has had a few maintenance issues come up with this particular automobile. She complained about certain vibrations she felt during braking. She took it in for a look-see and they did a brake job on it. That wasn't cheap but it was within reason so no one thought much of it. That didn't take care of the vibrations altogether though. She drives pretty much like me but I didn't teach her to drive. I chalked that up to her being very observant while riding in our car all those years. Being the independent woman we raised her to be, she took professional driving lessons and took and passed the driving test for our state all on her own. I was impressed by that. Now-a-days she only consults me when certain matters gets the better of her.

This time, she went in for an oil change and asked them to check for that nagging vibration in the brakes again. They told her the problem was with an ABS sensor unit in the right, rear wheel assembly. Then they told her it would cost almost seven hundred dollars to replace it. That's when she called mom and dad. I was more than perturbed when I heard the number. Seven hundred dollars to replace a sensor unit in the ABS braking system. What was it made of ... GOLD?

Clearly, if you look at the image above it is obvious that it isn't made of GOLD.

You can also clearly see a "heat affect area" just behind and above the lug, stud, bolts at the bottom of the assembly. This dark area is the result of bearing failure and heat from the friction allowed by said bearing failure. You see ... I'm concluding that the ABS sensor DID NOT FAIL as a result of some component defect. It was forced to fail by excessive heat. How many out there knows that heat is a constant threat and fatal for electronic assemblies?

I would also have you note that the wiring plug-in receptor at the top of this image is mounted to what appears to this dumb, sidewalk mechanic, to be a compression fit cover on the mounting hub. Notice also the hammer dent where the mechanic "knocked" the assembly out of its mounting. Was that necessary? Surely a small chisel or thin pry-bar could have been driven into the crack where the hub flange set up against the rear-axle housing. My real question should be ... wasn't it possible to pry the now dented housing cover off the hub assembly, exposing the connecting nut that held the lug plate, then remove the bearing and race? That way, an all new wheel assembly would not have been required and then, replacing the sensor housing along with the wiring plug-in receptor and the internal sensor assembly would have finished the repair. I'm sure it would have taken longer to complete the repair thus increasing the labor cost but would it have been more than seven hundred dollars to do it the right way?

I suspect that we are hearing or seeing the truth of the situation here. The service rep told our daughter, hereafter referred to as "Kellie" that they did not have the parts needed for the repair and would need to order them. It would be a long wait. That information had something to do with Kellie needing to call us along with a desire for some assurance that she was doing it correctly. If there is anyone out there who has experience and knowledge about this exact component of a 2007 Toyota Carolla, right, rear, axle assembly ... Please speak up and verify one or the other's position here.

Being logical and suspicious as I am and thinking that I know a bit about how the human brain functions within a service agent's head and the rationale he might use to hasten the situation and affect a speedier repair, cost not being a factor for him ... would he, instead of making Kellie wait or leave now and return later after the parts had been acquired and the repair made the right way, find out that the part they did have which could accomplish that end, was on hand and available for use? It was a complete rear wheel hub assembly. All that would be needed was to remove one and replace it with the other and it was a fix. Never mind that it would cost three times as much to do that way. Also, getting it finished the easy way would make another mechanic available for another critical repair where a customer was waiting.

It is difficult for this long time customer of Toyota to believe that some engineer working for Toyota would design and have approval of their manager for such an expensive item with no other recourse for any and all Toyota car owners but to pay seven hundred dollars for a repair if any one component of their own rear wheel assembly should ever go bad. It just doesn't sound like the Toyota I know.

Until I am shown to be totally and completely wrong about my opinion, I will say that the responsibility for this expensive repair lays with the dealership's service agent and mechanic or even the service manager, if he was consulted and had some input into the matter at hand. For all I know, it was the service manager's decision to make after all, his desk and ear is where the buck should stop.

I'm thankful that I thought to request the defective part. If I hadn't, it would have ended in the service department's office when the bill was paid by Kellie.

Perhaps it will turn out that it would have been best if that was the end of it. Who would have known but the perpetrators involved?

I'm considering submitting this post to Toyota's District Manager or the main headquarters customer service representative. Should I? Would it do an ounce of good? I'll let you know.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The bottom photo is a close-up of "Chewy." The top one is an image I borrowed from the web of a supposed Blue Tick Hound/Beagle mix puppy. Chewy's muzzle is not as "boxed" or "square" looking and her ears are certainly shorter than the other pups but other than that, she is spot on with her body and leg markings. I don't see any representation of an Aussie Cattle Dog in her. She already weighs more and is longer and higher than our Vet's expectations and predictions.

Yesterday I noticed that one of her razor-sharp baby fangs had come out and the smaller teeth both top and bottom look like a set of new human dentures. They are so white and perfectly matched. I believe our little girl is growing up quicker than anyone expected.

Our back yard (her playground and toilet) is a muddy marsh. We had some snow a few day back and then yesterday it got up to the mid fifties and everything that was frozen melted including an inch or so of the frozen soil. Those are the ingredients for a mess when an overly energized young adult Coon Hound mix gets out with her friends next door and have constant foot races and wallowing matches. I do not know what our neighbors do with three muddy dogs at once. I tried to wipe Chewy off but soon realized it was a losing battle. Two or three towels could not have gotten her clean. So ... Maureen and I took her into our bathroom and placed her in the tub, giving her a long needed bath. So much hair came off with the dirt, it stopped up the drain, requiring constant removal to prevent an accumulation of dirty, soapy water. As it was, she left a whale of a bathtub ring after we were done.

Why is it that dogs go crazy right after a bath? We kept the bathroom door closed until we gave her a cursory towel down and soaked up the majority of the water. When we did all we could and opened the door, she ran out and went crazy. It was some time before she quieted down enough to give her another rub down with another towel. Maureen ended up with back problems before we were done. She stayed bent over the tub longer than her back could bear it and it too went wild. She confessed, that had never happened to her before. I believe age is getting to us both.

It continues to rain heavily here. The rain runoff has moved some of the muddy build-up along the fence perimeter down into the lower area we have fenced off to keep Chewy out from behind the shed. That helped but there is no getting away from mud this time of year, no matter how thick one's grass is. I ordered myself some Mudrucker slip-on, water-proof shoes and a shoe cleaning brush assembly I'll use to clean the Mudruckers next spring when the monsoons move in, as they always do. I'll need to mount the brush contraption onto something stable, so I can stand on it while forcing the shoes back and forth through it. It's like one of those brushes golf courses us at the clubhouse entrances. Now ... if we only had a mud room to let Chewy into before she is allowed into the house. A guy can dream, can't he?