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I’ve always loved seeing movie footage of the past. It makes this short film below that more special in that I was born and raised just outside of The Big Apple and considered it my stompin’ grounds during my High School days.

More, I’ve had a couple of odd coincidencedinks in life that revolve around my early years spent in New York City. I’d often spent time in  New York City, The Village,  roaming the walk down shops after munching on a seventy-five cent pizza slice. By far, the Leather shops were my favorite to visit. I was immediately attracted to the smell of finished leather goods, their shine, polished to deep warm browns or beige and tan colors.  One shop owner in particular was a bit more out going than most, and that was wrapped by a quick sense of humor all tied together by tremendous wit. His name was, Byan. He stood tall with penetrating dark eyes that glowed above the flash of  his smile. Our conversations were never long but they played in my head usually throughout the following days. Mysterious, that was the word for this fellow.

Fast forward eight or so years and I’m attending a bluegrass festival in Hog Town Creek, just outside Gainesville, Florida. I was singing lead for an agent at that time, traveling to gigs with one of the three bands he managed. I’m thinking my pay was about a flat 75 dollars per week. The music drew me to the festival and there the smell of leather goods at a nearby booth attracted my attention. Sure enough, it was, Byan, running a leather stand. It turned out his parents owned a ranch nearby and he’d left NYC to return to his family’s home. He wanted to learn how to play guitar and I was intrigued with leather work… We traded skills and I ended up being a leather worker running three shops for the next 14 years.

Of course, there’s more. I got to know my wife of 38 years while  learning the leather trade from, Byan. We made items for the local leather shops in Gainesville—there were about four of them in town. I often worked on sewing leather hats of all shapes and sizes. A few years later found my wife and I working into all hours of the night sewing wallets and visors as we started our first leather business. It was years later when all of this came to circle.

Thirty years later, my wife and I visited Denton, England, along with her Brother and his wife. It was there that my wife’s family were once hatters. It turns out they started in Denton and finally made it to New York City and I suspect made ,’a killing,’ as they say in retail. Why? Well just look at what everyone is wearing in the film below. Wow. The story of my wife’s ,’Hatters,’ family is also amazing, but that’s for another time.

Enjoy this glimpse into another era; a time gone by.

One more thing: the air seems much more polluted in this film than it appears to be in New York City now. Maybe too much,’Clean,’ coal back then?

Franque23

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I’m thinking eating an apple and then a banana could make a person fart? This could be trouble. I’m working the public service desk for the nest 5 hours and I just consumed both! If the answer to my first important question of the day is,’Yes,’ I can only hope some service dogs come in. The good news? I’ll be the first to find out the validity of the premise so I can quickly leave my area in search of a book or some other task.

Question two for today: Has our Supreme Court always been strictly a partisan affair and corrupted by outside interests? I didn’t believe so as a child, but , then again, I also believed in Santa Clause.

My take of the Kavanaugh selection? The vote was 48 NO to 50 YES for confirmation. This means there were 48 correct votes and 50 wrong—that’s about it. For liberals, the future for Supreme Court decisions looks bleak; that the Supreme Court no longer appears to have a swing voter might wreak havoc as decisions come down during the years ahead.

Third question: Why is the suffix, ‘Jerry or Gerry,’ such a derogation? We have the, ‘Jerry’s’ (the German soldiers during world War 11) and, Gerrymandering, (Pretty much the sole corrupt political device that secured the election for many candidates throughout our country.) If something has been Jerry-rigged it won’t work for long—we all know that. But did you know, “Jerry,’ is another name for Chamber Pot!?!?!OH I know, a chamber pot was well received when needed, but it still seems to be a bottom-of-the-barrel sorta thing.

So why does all this matter? My name is Gerald, often turned to, Gerry, by family and friends, so I’m a bit sensitive to having a name associated with, 1)the enemy, 2)corruption, 3)something that won’t be any good or, 4) a piss-pot and worse. This is why being called,’Franque,’ by friends on athletic teams in High School was such a relief!

Fourth question: Since 1996, Medical Cannabis sales tax collection in states that have deemed the drug legal for medical use has totaled over, One billion, two hundred eighty-five thousand dollars. These are the medical sales. Imagine if the illegal usage sales and the tax charged were added to this figure? Why in any Capitalist’s, rational head would it seem good to not legalize Pot?* Folks—we have a bunch of seeds and stems running our DOJ (Department of Justice). (Sessions is a jerk).

Fifth question: Why do so many men seem to hate women? Last time I looked, read or have been told, every man on the planet came by way of a woman. Or, is this alternative fact?

So many men lust for the same-sex they hate, demean, exclude from human rights that our world seems a whirling dervish of septic brain rot. For now, unfortunately, this is the good news. The over-all history of men’s atrocities toward women makes our current societal condemnation of women an improvement of epic proportions. I’ve always had a,’soft-spot,'(meaning I care?) for the plight of the Native American’s and for all indigenous people. Thing is, take any total number of any single group who has been wronged in history and put that figure against the number of over one-half of the world’s population throughout history—that would be female—and imagine which number is larger. See? Women make up the largest group number of people tortured, used, abused, slaughtered and misaligned in the history of Mankind. And I do wonder about the term, ‘Mankind.’ Divide the word, Mankind,(Man—kind) and see that each half of the term is kinda off.

Sixth question: Why are so few patrons coming to the service desk? Hmmm. And no, that was a burp-I swear.

Franque23 loves bananas and apples.

 

*https://www.forbes.com/sites/andrewdepietro/2018/05/04/how-much-money-states-make-cannabis-sales/#28e12c8df181

 


(Please note the book recommendation below this post.)

Of course, the President’s so-called tax breaks are simply theft from the American workers to give more money to the already super wealthy—everyone knows this. And dropping controls on pollution dumping into our streams and rivers is completely stupid. Everyone knows this as well, even if they drink the, “Kool-aid.” But,  why do some people support agenda’s that they know are wrong?

Definition of brainwashing 

1: a forcible indoctrination to induce someone to give up basic political, social, or religious beliefs and attitudes and to accept contrasting regimented ideas(Merriam-webster)

That’s right. People support ideas and practices that they know are wrong because they have been brainwashed to think differently about what they know is true. This is what has happened to the Trump supporters. And, really, I don’t blame Trump’s supporters for their beliefs as much as I want them to understand what has happened to them.  We need Trump’s supporters to, ‘Snap out of it.’ We need our republican counterparts in this society to  wake up and smell the coffee; we need to understand that many of us have been indoctrinated to vote against our own well-being.

The GOP regime has relentlessly assaulted the American voters with a barrage of fear-loaded slogans that aren’t true, (Immigrants are taking your jobs—not true.)slide-of- mouth motto’s (America, love it or leave it—against all American principles!) Make America great again!—ha!, and the famously flawed,’Trickle Down theory’.) It’s all a lie told over and over again,.

The verbose reiterated barrage against pollution controls, banking regulation, the U.N, the Gay, the Woman and less fortunate are all lies propelled into the minds of so many. And all of them by means of one simply truth: say anything well enough, long enough and often enough and it doesn’t matter whether it’s true or not—people will believe what they have been taught to believe through repetition.

But is Trump a fool? Many point to his mid-range popularity and say, “It ain’t so.” But here’s the thing: Trump’s standings, polling, none of that changes what he is: wrong in just about everything.

Trump’s poor vision with regard to pursuing fossil fuel development verses renewable exploration and expansion, his disregard for increasing pollution, human rights, specifically women’s rights and minorities, his attack on EAP standards and lack of support for science advancement are a few hot spots to focus on when it comes to thinking Trump a fool.

So much about this man is wrong and stupid, yet so many cheer him on??? I’m thinking a fool can win at cards, but not at life. I hope I’m right. Right now, we’re in the mists of a Russian(and others) financed brain-washing campaign of the American people. The results aren’t pretty.

Like it or not, our population has been worked on by powerful interests so that we’ve become divided from one another. We’ve been told that the under educated cannot reason or fend for themselves(not true); we’ve been told that ‘Southerner’s,’ are racists and that blacks and minorities are somehow inferior(not true). And to what gain? Remember, United we stand; divided we fall. This is why some American’s have been taught to hate and disregard reason. The powerful want to control us, use us, and all to their own gain at our cost.

The first thing to teach an indoctrinated, brainwashed person is that they have been. This is the first step back to reason.

Marching, yelling and sign holding might help identify our difference of opinion, but teaching and informing our populace about the tools being used in our society to cause us to work against our own interest is of utmost importance. We need to identify those mechanisms present in America that work to divide us and cause us to not protect our own welfare and root them out.

Now is a great time to understand we have been brainwashed as a people. Now is a great time for us to trump this brainwashing and get back together.

 

Franque23

History can teach us a lot and, Revolution is not a dinner Party, by Compesti, gives good insight into China’s Mao zedong revolution..maybe at your local library…too.

https://www.amazon.com/Revolution-Dinner-Party-Chang-Compestine/dp/0312581491


About that Morgan-Franquemont conflict: The Royals verses the pirates.

It’s a miracle any Morgan Pirates survive, with Joe Morgan driving off of bridges as a kid, with ladies running a muck who need,’How to wear hat lessons,'(This photo blocked by the Who knows Who) and Dave Morgan, now gone, bless his soul, who once fell into the brink at age three without a care in the world or knowledge of how to float. Ripley’s Believe It or Not has maybe called me twice about this family,* but I’ve taken the high, Royal Road and decided to write this glob only.

To begin, it’s obvious the Noble Franquemont line is ready to take control.

It’s a Royal bunch…those who will lead us are pictured above and below.

We can rest assured of our humble Leadership.

And here is pictured the foundation of our Royal belief…our backyard entrance to our home’s Nobel courtyard in Germany-*(Thanks to my wife for this wonderful shot.)

Should you dare step inside the courtyard of our ancestral home, you would see this.

And here are some of our joined generation that solidified the Franquemont (okay, Morgamont) victory at Lake Bonaparte.

But, truthfully, most Morgan pirates need to be in jail. NO, really, I think I could sell them time shares in prison!

It’s not because of their politics, their thievery, their gluttonous drankin’ and absolute aversion for just about anything normal, no,,,these are their very best parts. The worst of the lot lie in the shadows of innocent looks, half bent smiles and spineless attacks when the Royal Franquemont Guard is sleeping, or talking , or eating, or just fartin’ around paying no attention to the Pirates.

Do you see how young the pirates begin to sneak their way into our unsuspecting hearts!

And Pirates the Morgan’s be, every lad and lass of them, the worst sort. Call the cops! No, wait, he’s one of them no good, double fistin’ potato chip eating lot.

The fellow on the right is by marriage one of them, and he’ll arrest anyone of us on the spot—the cop that he is. The middle man, Nick Morgan, be just that, a go between who claims the Morgan name but not the politics. And on the left, a Royal, Craig the Car-is locked,(Carlock) member who listens to all sides.

Well, at least the Morgan’s will have trouble posting bail….oh wait, one of them was or still is a fierce bail’s man guys?

The Morgan man at Dakota’s back was once a bailsmen. Ben the Morgan is now an insurance guy. Ha! He wants to insure your life.

The Crime as witnessed this past July on the 24ish upon the dock of Innocence….

It was a clear day, the waters calm, as I stood unsuspecting on our new dock, recovering from three cracked/bruised ribs, a torn right leg and fatigue it’d cost me to build it**.  Mike the Smile, Pirate Murphy, as he’s called, came kayaking up to me all, well, smiles. Aye, if I hadn’t been in such a pleasant ruling mood I might have notice his smile seemed a bit skewed. Sure enough , our pleasant conversation was soon followed by Nick the Wicked and his protege, Blake, known as Blinko the Pirate, who laid my smiles to waist. I always take the high, Royal road so I never suspected foul play as Blinko raced up the stairs while Mike the Smile Murphy and I shared conversation. Moments later, Nick and Blinko hauled ass off in their kayak with my beers and soda’s in hand!!! Yellin’ all the while! This will forever be known as the Slithering Smile theft of 2018.

I’ll have em’ walkin’ the steps to the lake when I catch up to them.

(Our half way dock steps.)

They took my very best beer—not to be replaced throughout the reunion—and some super soda I’d never miss. It was a horrible sight, and then Mike, the bad smilin’ Murphy, slid like a snake away in his kayak to follow the pirates.

This is typical stuff from the Morgan Pirates; I have to cheer, Nick Morgan, however, who is smart to realize in his own words, “Trump is a con, a cheat and lizard eating suck head with no brains…”***So there is hope for the genes. Anyway, with our Franquemont Royal empathy I will spare the Morgan lot this time.

For now, let them eat ice cream!

(BTW-this is one shot of the new dock.)

The decree has been decried? It reads like this: “I don’t know, something will happen in two years at our next reunion…dead fish in the frig…something.” This man in a new Franquemont helmet guarantees it!

Meanwhile, I’ll be checking passports when getting aboard from now on.

But there is one more thing. Through tough negotiations, tireless days and nights on scotch and beer, we have decided to claim the Morgamont dock, ( a half-way dock located between the bluff and lake as pictured four shots above), as a safe heaven from any intentional farting, photo bombing or fire burning, stuff like that. It’s sorta like during World War 11 when countries agreed to not bomb special places like France’s, Versailles, as they bombed and killed 60 million people else where.

We will, instead, follow this new helmet wearing man to the,’New,’ Marina and camp ground…

It’s all good.

Franque23

Calling me the absolute, forever King will do for now.

  • Not true….believe it or not.
  • **Our ancestral home in Germany.
  • ***See previous glob—Bonaparte Dockin’
  • ****This may not be an exact quote….

 

 

 

 

 


Lake Bonaparte has a knack for drifting the sand while holding the heart.

This shot is of my first night out this year, just before my plans came crashing down along with my dock. But please, don’t ask me about the dock we HAD to re-build before this year’s reunion. Heck, the next glob is about that. For now, it’s all about my first night out fishin’ and me coming back all grins.

What you see here is a 5 pound bass, a 4.5 pounder, and two smaller varieties though one may be that huge sunfish I caught to kick off the night. I had the larger ones measured and weighed by a fellow who was also fishing in Mud Lake at the time with two lovely women. Some guys have the best luck! Thing is, it’s been near about ten years since I caught a monster bass, and these two came within 30 minutes of one another. All top lure, split Rapala’s.

I think they both went 18 inches, but the main thing is I’m as convinced now as I was then that this year is the year of the lunkers…Good luck fishing. One man in our reunion group caught about a four pounder off the dock, and another slightly smaller right in his boat house. But, perhaps the strangest catch was Dakota’s reel in of a good size bass that wasn’t connected to his line or lure at all, but to a line the fish had broken previously that got tangle in Dakota’s lure on the retrieve!!!!

I couldn’t wait to get out to fish again, but I about never did for the next of all the twenty day’s I had left to fish up there. There’s good reason—that’s the secret in the next glob.

It was a reunion year, and the Franquemont-Morgan gang had a freakin’ blast.

This is the cook-off contest and the five judges were clearly paid-off not to pick my stuffed mushrooms but some other foreign dish cooked by Nick with a name no one could pronounce.

But, before I sob in my gravy, someone asked me how big fish used to be in Lake Bonaparte, and although I’ve no idea , there’s this picture of a kid bringing in his catch to Priest’s so long ago. As a kid, I heard plenty of stories(all true no doubt:-0) of Northern’s pushing six feet long coming out of the lake. I’d give about anything to have those pictures that lined the eatery and penny candy store at Priest’s….One huge, gigantic fish after another,,,the types we don’t see at all anymore. (Thank you  Jesus since I skinny dip, or now, chunky-dunk)

This is an old photo of a typical catch long ago at Lake Bonaparte

We did a zillion things as a family this year, pirate hunt, pan fish, dance, bowl, Ice cream sundae day, games, dock-out, and rock out with painting them.

But, the Ice cream boat!!! Oh my…

We mobbed the boat every chance we got..the reasonable prices hit the mark and the selection drooled the mouths.

The two families slid in every direction and never met a face they didn’t love.

In fact, the Morgan—Franquemont families have decided to name our 1/2 way dock down to the Lake….Morgamont. Now, if you see the sign you’ll understand.

Of course, some couldn’t make it this year, and other’s never will as they’ve gone to the other side or maybe flipped the Venetian blind between us.

I’ll forever miss my cousin Rob Morgan

And so many others who did or didn’t know the lake.

The waters run swift in season in a State Park,  just east of Harrisville (Glenwood Falls)

But when the 21  children of our reunion handed me a petition to return our reunion to a two year cycle instead of the four we were on, I knew what had always been true:

Nothing runs as deep as the bonding waters of Lake Bonaparte—that’s the truth, and the soul knows.

Have a great August and Fall at The Lake….

Franque23

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Gerald, the farmer. That’s not a title I ever thought I might stand by but, in some respects, it’s here now with me.

No, from the get go I announced as a small boy of four and then for some years after that I was, in fact, Gerald the Great! I’d march around our house with my wooden sword held high while my friends herded behind me proclaiming that, “I am Gerald the Great!”

There could be no doubt about my title. It was so well forecast by my mom’s natural golden shining hair and red lipped sweet smiles. My dad’s ever present smooth countenance, a demeanor so calm he could part the red sea with a single whisper, this man, too, had such a force his words gave swords to my armies.

I paraded armies of plastic men about the house for years, moving huge numbers of troops from room to room seeking the high ‘couch’ ground to gain advantage over an invisible foe. In fact, I directed and starred in these plastic men battles for so long I’m sure my mom must have wondered if, “The Nut case!”, should be added to the title, “Gerald the Great!”

I could never know the joy my first baby girl would give me.

Back then, I had to listen to the birds; the wind. I’d run across fields of dandelion knowing my song was in the air, that the sparkle in the dew upon the grass called. It was never hard to climb our apple trees highest limbs, catch, hit or throw the ball or balance precariously to walk across a 2X4 beam laid upon the ground. Life came easy..

Most mornings, the house rang of piano music played by my beautiful red-haired sister or mother whose apple pies usually scented the air by 10 AM. Perhaps, this is why when it came time for me to go to school I confidently announced that I wasn’t going to go. Of course, this is the first time I had to realize being, Gerald the Great, had its kinks.

I was the daydreamer in school; the birds were still singing. The white clouds seemed so much more appealing to see than the chalk streaks upon the black board. Schools friends were like brothers and the girls, so much smarter and with long hair, were fascinating.

 Sixth grade graduation…I’m in the back row, 6th from the right.

I drafted behind my brother’s spotless lead and fell into sports, wrestling from 3rd grade on, jostling lacrosse sticks on the field and running the football behind great blockers.

Ed placed third in the Nationals while wrestling for Harvard.

.

Music gave me a push, too. Wait!!! Whahaha, this is a very old photo and worn around the top left but if you click on it the picture seems to show my head smoking!!!!

It was my freshmen year of high school when my best friend, Bob Russo, and I attended a camp in Marlboro, Vermont, as counselors. One night, he slipped beneath the lake waters and never came back up. I’d been there, on the shore, but in the full moon light I was unable to locate his call for help. As daunting as that moment was to carry from then on, Gerald the Great, didn’t exactly go to the bottom of that lake with my friend that night, not entirely.  It’s  true, a part of me never left that shore line, but the burning embers of new love kept my glow alive through most of my remaining High School years. Thing is, Gerald the Great, did lose that night and I may have never found my way back.

Death has a nasty habit of sticking around, forever.

Life has a great way of moving on whether you’re ready to or not.

It seems we run to our shadows as we live.*

It’s years later, now, after the death of my friend. Of course, like most of us who live to my age, I’ve seen quite a few loved ones pass. I’m not sure if I see them best in the sunrise now or find them coming back most often during the sunset hours.  It’s all a wonder.

I had a renter, Ralph, a Vietnam combat vet who struggled with chemical poisoning. I liked, Ralph, and visited him often for no reason but friendship. One day like any other, he sat me down in his living room and told me this.

“Gerry, I appreciate your help here with the trailer; living here has been great. I’ve been going to the VA for several years now and they say my time is up. This is why I moved up here; to go to the VA.  Why I watch these damn combat dramas I don’t know.” Ralph turned off his TV set off. “Thing is, I was  in Sunrise , Florida, before I came here and one morning I decided to walk from my place all the way over a long bridge and make my way to the ocean. I saw a beautiful sunrise and heard a voice tell me that I’d make something out of my life yet. Now, I’m just dying; I’ve done nothing.”

I liked, Ralph. I hated to see his sunken shoulders, to hear his words. During my 14 years in retail I’d had complete strangers come up to my leather stands and announce they were dying, but this was Ralph, my friend. That I never knew his situation hit me like a dagger.

“Listen, Ralph, none of us can say what we have done when it comes to other lives. It’s that old image of a pebble being thrown into a pond; we ripple our lives through others in ways we don’t know.” We talked for hours.

 I found myself hoping I’d created waves with my life.

Funny, but I never went on to tell him how he’d rippled through me, and most of that I didn’t even hold at the time. Ralph passed two weeks later.

So, the point for, Gerald the Great, as the throes of life and death have surrounded me, is it came as no surprise to learn later on that I’d actually come from a long line of famous soldier regiments that fought around the world back in the 1750’s.

 

This is the palace where Von Franquemont’s were trained in math and warfare.

No, for me, I guess this time called life has always been a battle to win. Maybe, did I win? I have to think.

The rain came lightly down today as I picked our garden with the company of Shadow, my ever-loving dog.

I thought about a great friend, Anne, who just this past month told me the doctors had said she’d be dead by then. Her smile was no less bright; the warmth and compassion from her is no less spectacular than anything that ever was. Sometimes, this battle called life seems too much.

Anne is so much to so many. It feels as though she could never leave. She’s a tsunami of joy for the living spirit world.

I came in to leave this storm of thought carrying my produce to wipe the rain off my brow, pat down my dog and have some tea. It was time to regroup; time to kindle flames. It’s time to find the high ground, hit the couch, maybe read. I still hear the birds.

The young give me hope.

One day, Gerald the Great, may march around this house once more and if I do I’ll have to proclaim, “I never saw so much coming.”

Warm cheers for May

Franque23

 

 

*This is my son-in-law and our grandson.

 

 

 


It’s happening today all over America and it happened in Gainesville, Florida, too. Crowds of people got out to say enough is enough! We want to ban large magazines, assault type weapons used most often in mass shooting, demand background checks for all gun purchases at any venue of sale-retail, guns shows and online sales.

We want the mass shooting to stop; thoughts and prayers are not enough!image

The message once was, Peace. Today it’s, Stop Killing Us!

Bands played throughout the first 3 hour session of speeches and I couldn’t help but think of two guys that had a lot to do with my awakening—if not the World’s—to the idea of peace.

88164ecb2198992016fedeadee431b28 Waaay  young John Lennon and George Harrison…

By 1:30 the number pushed well over one thousand and all the time the messages that belong to this movement were heard loud and clear.

The crowd grew and the chanting became louder.

Then it was time to march but first we gathered all the students together in the center to applaud their work on this issue.

I think it’s of historical significance to note that the Nam war protests were led by students mostly college age. It was the young that led the way then as our younger students are leading the way now.* Politicians who scoff at the age of those leading this gun reform movement have failed to pay attention to history.  This group right here, the ones attacking the NRA led agendas in our country, are going to win. The politicians who put their chips down on the NRA are done, over-finished.

So how big was the Gainesville crowd…well, the line stretched nearly 1/2 mile long, and many deep. Old folks, father’s, mother’s, adults of every age, families, people pushing babies, skipping children, a huge amount of school age people and people pushing wheelchairs made the numbers bigly.

The chants continued:

March for Life!

Say No to NRA! Vote them out!29512883_10213899868544779_2253486432933025462_n

It was great to see friends there…**29498062_10213901109895812_8206434635422649271_n

 

The line of marching people felt endless, and my heart hopes so.

29511797_10213901479065041_2842824743314048217_n

As some of the speakers today knew one, two or all of the dead from the Parkland shooting personally, some signs also had a personal touch.

No, today didn’t feel like ,’another,’ event. The words, the feelings expressed, the messages and energy collectively gathered today represent a nation-wide movement that will continue. This time  America’s guns laws and the meaning of  the Right to Bear Arms will change. It’s the Nam protest day’s force all over again and these younger folks will not let go.

But what messages today let’s me know the time’s are a changin’?

We are in this together. And we will vote. Politicians who have so far refused to heed the call to disarm our society are already scurrying for a way to hide or re-invent their position.29541571_10213899931186345_2538367165260030756_n

A huge movement is coming around to think the NRA as it stands today is a real threat to American society.

Sending thoughts and prayers to the parents and loved ones over the death of their loved ones won’t work again, never again. All the so-called kids here today had this on their minds,

and they won’t forget.

Today we had an elegant speaking 11-year-old ask our Representatives one question? “Do you think we are stupid?”

Some Representatives do, and some have belittled the age of these protestors…. Trust me, the time is coming to end the office of those who do.

Power to the People no matter their age is alive and well-

Cheers 

Franque23

*Thanks to dale for this connection and for all of the pictures…

** Thanks to Joey and Debbie for their pictures as well.

 


These women, and children, that’s who!

So here’s my point. The children today who are working to not be shot dead in schools since this is a bad end to education are about to pick up the women movement and their vote. Once this happens the NRA and stupid blind politicians who can’t see the tsunami coming are going to be swept overboard, away and gone forever.

Yes, it’s true, once women get ‘on board’ with any movement that movement is bound to succeed even though it might take 100 years! Any married man can tell you: women don’t give up.

Case it point: the women’s suffrage movement took activists nearly 100 years to win the right to vote, but they never gave up. It all started as long ago as 1820 and the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified on August 1920.

Most men, all along, thought it ridiculous that women should have the right to vote.

Did you know that The 14th Amendment, ratified in 1868, extends the Constitution’s protection to all citizens—and defines “citizens” as “male”; the 15th, ratified in 1870, guarantees black men the right to vote-but not women. It’s mind-boggling, right?

It was a keen switch of logic that Susan B. Anthony pounced on to insist women should have equal rights not because they were equal to Men, but because they were different! This defeated the idea that women were not equal to men so they shouldn’t vote. Really a beautiful move by Susan.

Women can show us the way…

this shot is close to my home in Micanopy…We always called this the , River Sticks,’ which is odd because from studying Latin that river leads to Hell, The name by the state is some sort of canal. Me=River Sticks.

By the way, I have worked primarily with women for the last 24 years* of my professional life in Libraries. I have seen first hand the magic of women, their force, and unending capacity to care. But mind you, as a retail shop(s) owner in the 1980 and 1990’s, the power of the pocket-book was never lost to me…Ladies were a huge market for goods, more so than men.

One of us is not the others?

World War I  finally proved the worth of women to their worse half. Finally, on August 26, 1920, the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified. And on November 2 of that year, more than 8 million women across the United States voted in elections for the first time.

About the first thing women did with the power to vote was to enforce prohibition. 1920 started off with women winning the vote to end/stop most men ( age 15 ) from drinking an average of seven gallons of pure alcohol per year. Whew, that’d be hard to keep up!

Anyway, what’s important to note is that it was also women who brought prohibition to an end. Pauline Sabin was the one to argue that prohibition was forcing men to drink out of the home, wrecking family time and in 1933 prohibition ended…

And what about the , ‘Tree Huggers?’ Yep,  women were involved….sadly. Long ago, a group of men and women in Europe chained themselves to trees to stop deforestation in their area. Loggers, cut all of them in half while cutting the trees. But, do you see the guts of women?

 

This is the naked truth: we kill ourselves when we kill trees, our environment, our wildlife.

 

If you’d like to read a great book about a strong mother written by an appreciative son, read,

Rick Bragg’s…All over but the Shoutin’..there’s a great story here.

Did you know that more women have voted in National elections than men since 1964!?!?

So here’s my point once again, so late in this post. The children today who are working to not be shot dead in schools since this is a bad end to education are about to pick up the women and their vote. Once this happens the NRA and stupid blind politicians who can’t see the tsunami coming are going to be swept overboard, away and gone forever.

Forgive me if I repeat the obvious. Throwback men are doomed. If I can do anything to facilitate this process , I will. The NRA is over in this country and I’m glad to write it. We have been held hostage by the NRA worse than by any so-called ‘evil’ society from the middle East.

“More than 1.5 million US citizens have died as a result of guns in the last 49 years, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. … The Las Vegas shooting has once against renewed the debate over gun control in the US, where the right to bear arms is constitutionally protected and the …” **

This is not talking about the dead from World Wars of any kind.

Just make one of these 1.5 million deaths your child…how does that feel? I’m not shooting smoke, ‘up your butt,’ as the saying goes in bars. No, I’m trying to clear the air here…to make the deaths real, and to let you know the truth.

If you were a high School student with your entire life now realized ahead of you, would you like to be shot dead in school? Just asking.

Franque23 hates guns and killing of wild animals, of all things.

 

*I’ve been lucky enough to be married to one woman for over 37 years…

**http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/guns-killed-more-americans-firearms-deaths-us-wars-iraq-afghanistan-vietnam-vegas-mass-shooting-a7984421.html

 

 

 

 


Jed’s still a child in my mind’s eye. We’re running across the bluff by Lake Bonaparte where our lake house stands today; his brother Johnny is still alive. Jed’s a skinny kid who knows more than me, taller,  wise with eyes clear enough to see through. We’re laughing for good reason—we don’t know any different.

The wild outside had nothing on our childhood dreams, hopes and expectations. The cool lake water tickled our toes and pleased our fancy. Our younger days passed so quickly, days never tethered but set free by a glistening lake so perennial and steadfast as the universe.

Jed, you’re forever my cousin.

Truth: the lake bunk house rocked with laughter. Sleeping bags kept us warm on cots as nights made of stars crept overhead. Jed had then and always a special knack that makes me belly laugh. I’d roll inside bent over after hearing his pensive hilarious words so dryly spoken without a wasted syllable. Recently, there was this moment:

“Oh, being a tax collector has it’s tough moments.”—I could see the painful far away look in Jed’s eyes— “Catching people cheating on taxes, fining them more than they can afford to pay and then working them through payment negotiations; it’s all tough. But that’s not the most fun I’ve had working-other things come up, too.” It’s belly laugh roll on the grass time for me.

We stood together, grown men on the bluff as the setting sun dazzled rolling lake waves. The wind seemed at our back; Beer Island, High Rocks, Birch Island and Round Island so distant punctuated every day we’d spent in the spot as children.

A few years later we visited the lake again…

“I’m not sure about going to the castle.” Jed puffed on his cigar as he looked my way.

“Why? It’s our family’s castle; we should go to Germany.”

“We’re so different now— I don’t know how that would work.”

“Ah, that’s all just politics; this is blood; it will be good.” (Jed told me eight years ago that he had a ‘special’ circular file where he put all my blogs*, especially the political ones…)

“Well,” puff on cigar again, “let me think about it.”

I thought Jed would come.

He belongs.

As it turned, Jed never did make the trip to Europe this past September. Opportunity, so often a doubled edged sword, has struck its blow. No, Jed was only there in spirit with me just as it is for every cousin of mine. To me, the bonds of family never break but boil in the blood and remain as resilient as images of  Lake Bonaparte appear in my head. Some cousins long dead 11 or 13 years ago, and even Johnny now 55 years gone, still linger in my heart.

Long ago, Grandma Franque smiled at our young, prancing feet at the lake in a way I can only appreciate some 60 years later. She saw what Jed and the rest of us had then; family. I feel that now.

Goodbye, Jed, my lakeside cousin.

It’s impossible to weigh a heavy heart-

Franque23

 

  • *.i.e. trash can

Yep– the loyal Republicans who have clamored for decades about States Rights verses a strong central Government of rampant legislation now approve the concealed weapon permit from one state to another no matter how any state’s populace has voted on the issue. Wow…

How’s about all the taxes ‘righties’ have clamored against for sooo long but now their guys in Congress are all ‘feel good’ about double taxation! Yes, that’s right…er it’s wrong, but whatever,…Thing is if you limit the deductions of ANY state paid states or local taxes than people’s earnings that paid those taxes will once again be taxed as income–a second time, get it? So Republicans now promote double taxation! Let’s all stand up and cheer…right? Or, should we all take a knee?

We all need to take a walk in my ancestor’s garden and talk things over….

Trump’s team of slurred meaning slips up to the idea that Trump’s Mar A Lago estate in Palm County is the so-called, “Southern White House.”  But that’s “Not true,” say every sense of reality. Trump owns this semi-palace and he has Doubled the fees paid by public users since his election!!! Gee–wait, what? Is Trump profiting from his Office?!??! Er, duh!

“Hello! Hello! Trump’s privately profiting off his office–that’s illegal…”

A zillion meme’s and posted notes have expressed despair at the over-all doings of this current administration-cutting the knees out from under the needy, undermining our healthcare system and stashing billions of tax cuts for the rich into his next run for office.  And then we have this administration increasing taxes on anyone not extremely wealthy via a misnomer-ed ‘tax cut’ that will really be a tax increase as years pass for anyone not in the top 1% of tax payers.

But I felt this reader, (okay-my wife) said a few things very well in this….

“It is a dilemma. I know that I generally do tend to think that people who don’t see things my way are wrong. But there is so much history to prove that the GOP solutions have never worked, and have been destructive, and have led to the economic disparity and shrinking of the middle class, I find it so hard to respect people who don’t look at the history,or science, or have some agenda that I find offensive. Especially where bigotry and exclusion come into play. I prefer the motto “Humanity matters”. It is hard to disagree and still maintain some semblance of a relationship. But that leads to further polarization. Arguing doesn’t work, because minds are fixed. There is a belief that Trump will turn the economy around for everyone by bringing business back.If so, I hate the cost, and have a secret hope that businesses have learned the lessons of lawsuits when their lack of regulation led to illness and death. Everyone should re-visit Erin Brockovich. Things were not working for too many, especially in the rust belt, and there is a division between the needs of urban and rural voters. Maybe the world will move ahead in energy and conservation of resources without the GOP and US government. But I sure hate that about 30% of my income goes to taxes that ultimately do not provide me with a better quality of life, but a worse one,”

My way-smart wife….

Well, like it or not, the entire American work force is about to be , “Trickled down” upon…get towels.

The environmental blood bath featured by this administration is a wretched thing to behold. Somewhere, somehow, this group of right-winged Christians in Washington have forgotten it’s our charge to care and nurture this God-given Earth…

Ireland’s earth

It’s been a great ninth year for this glob post; readers from sixty-four countries read this glob last year, a bit down from sixty-seven countries the previous year and I have to wonder: did a few countries get blown up or something? Hope not, but our ex-security head gives us a 3 in 10 chance of having a nuclear blow-out with North Korea. Who likes those odds? Not me.

Those are the odds?

I like Peace; love. How about you?

We are too perfectly normal.

Much more to come this year. I’ve an entire side of my family you don’t know much about and it’s a wonderful, American story. Plus, I’ve loads of pictures from 2017 yet to post on gardening fun and family cheer!  See you soon….

We can do this thing. We can get our country together again, strong, back on track and be World Leaders once again.

Cheers for 2018.

 

Franque23

 

 

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