The Friday Fives

1. If you get to have a third arm and got to choose its placement, where would you put it on your body?

Right under my left arm post pit.  Imagine the joy of having grocery bags in those hands and easily use the right hand to insert keys into the door and open it.  You could drive and also be able to turn the page on the book your reading (I am assuming in a world where extra arms are added on, we also have figured out self-driving to the extent that driving and reading is a possibility. )

2. You get to pick one superpower to just one of your friends. What do you pick?

Well sure.  My sister would have the power to instantly zap into the house foods to eat.  I am always asking her to whip up something really ridiculous and expensive and time-consuming and with such powers, she could put my annoying request to rest and we would eat well.

3. If you could choose a movie from your youth or past and fill it with CGI and 3D what film would you pick?

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.  It cries out for some modern tech to really sell it.

4. What book/movie world would you want to live in and why?

It is kind of cliche as that is what the entire series is about –  but I would pick the Jasper Fforde Tuesday Next books.

5. You’re walking down the street, and look up to a see a man being carried off by a very large bird. What do you do?

It’s over.  It is now the time of cats and dogs falling from the sky. Carrion beasts pillaging the villages.  I would restart smoking and go back to drinking scotch and maybe take on opioids.  The end is neigh.

The Friday Fives

1. Have you ever had a nightmare formal dining experience?

I am sure there is one – I used to do some military general staff support big dinners with mucky-mucks.  But the only thing that really comes to mind was Thanksgiving this year – I was setting the table and dyslexic Roy but all the silverware on the table in the wrong order – spoon and knife on the wrong side, the fork on the wrong side, etc. . .  I have set dozens and dozens for formal dinner tables in my days in the service but a simple T-Day dinner and I did it all basakwards.   Not really a nightmare but that is all that comes to mind.

2. What is the worst thing to serve at an all you can eat buffet?

I can do me some damage at a buffet – salads, desserts, sushi, done it all. How about Ethiopian including beef tar tar.  It would take hours to refill and y of the empty courses and the tar tar would definitely go bad.

3. What is your “quick to prepare and impress for company” dinner to host with just minutes notice?

Spaghetti with meat sauce.  Easy peasy, delicious and the Fixin’s are always on hand.

4. What is your grab and go reliable lunch to take to work?

Tuna salad sandwiches.

5. What is your favorite dish that your mom used to make for you?

Lasagne.  Since I am now diabetic and don’t eat meat, it is in the rearview mirror, but if I ever get back on the beef, it is one of the first things I’ll cook.

Friday Fives


1. Do you remember the Apollo 11 mission? Or any of the subsequent moon visits?

50 years ago this week, Apollo took off, landed on the lunar surface and returned to Earth. It is still extraordinary.   I am consumed about this, this week. As a young five-year-old boy I remember my neighbor Paul, who set up a telescope in his front yard and we had the chance through the days to witness what was happen up in space. It still gives me tingles.  We had an annual volume of our family encyclopedia set from 1969 (didn’t everyone in those days have an encyclopedia set?) which had that iconic picture of Buzz Aldrin standing on the Moon, which made Neil Armstrong the greatest human photographer for taking that shot. 

(Take about 20 minutes and watch the above video.  Captivating and rarely seen footage combined with rarely heard video from Mission Control, the Eagle lander and Collins in the Command Capsule.  Worth your time.  It gives me goose pimples.)

So it is always weird when I hear folks claim none of this was real. Yes, it happened, I saw it with my eyes in a telescope.  And it was always a tough time for Apollo 11 astronauts Michael Collins, Neil Armstrong & Buzz Aldrin to deal with the conspiracy theories of a historic event that they lived through, live on television & this weekend I’ll be reliving it through NASA videos and news accounts.

2. Do you remember the first space shuttle launch?

Yes, although not as captivating as the moon landing. Probably because I was all grown up and alas we have become a bit complacent with the space travel thing. But the Space Shuttle was still a marvel of science and engineering.

3. Remember Skylab?

[Editor’s note: That little dark spot at the top of the sun is the International Space Station crossing the moon while in Earth’s orbit]

Yes, but I am more captivated and impressed by the International Space Station.  It is considered one of the greatest man-made machines and engineering creations of all time and many folks yawn when you bring it up, but seriously, that thing has been up there in orbit for years, nay, decades and is being improved upon all the time and is a thing of beauty.  Take some time to read the first half of Neil Stephanson’s SevenEves to get an idea of its majesty in design and prominence in space. (Note: this is a science fiction book telling the story of how the ISS saves all of mankind. The second half of the book is kind of lame and phoned in.)

4. Should we try to get to Mars?

Sure.  If Matt Damon can do it, we all can.

5. Are there space aliens out there?

Not in any kind of humanoid form that we would recognize – no.  Too random of a coincidence that there are others like us out there in the void.  We is all we are and we is all we’ve got.

The Friday Fives

1. Any big summertime plans for the remainder of the summer?

Nothing major really.  Perhaps a trip up to Mack this month for a few nights of camping and it looks like a trip to Crested Butte is in the works if I can work out the life/work logistics to make it happen.

2. What’s your idea of the perfect summer day?

A cold beer, a lawn chair, some shade and feet soaking in a baby swimming pool – playing some Gin or perhaps some Pinochle. 

3. How do you beat the summer heat?

See number 5.  I get off the bus, walk the block or two back to the apartment, crank down the heat, toss on some shorts and flip flops and mix up a nice icy G&T. 

4. What’s one thing you always seem to do every summer whether you want to or not?

Take in something up at the Red Rocks Amphitheater. 

5. Do you have air conditioning?

Yes and after a good number of years with it and the majority of my life without it, I will not go back.  I grew with a big old swamp cooler in the living room window and that kept the front of the house nice and cool but didn’t’ translate to my childhood bedroom at the back of the house.  In college at an elevation of 7,000+ feet above sea level, no real need for A?C. In Europe, our dorms had no A/C (but the Air Force squad on our kaserne had A/C. Damn flyboys!)  In my early Denver days, no A/C and it was hot. So hot. So very hot.  A/C is a dream.

The Friday Fives

1. What profession doesn’t get enough credit or respect?
I know it sounds cliche’ but I say it is those emergency first responders. We take them for granted. But look around at the myriad of maladies that we face – those folks need more respect (and I admit, they get a lot – but really, more is probably apt..)

2. What’s a good sign someone has a wholesome personality?
I like folks to talk about incidents in their past and ask follow-up questions – very soon into the conversation it will be apparent whether they are telling lies, which then shows if they are wholesome or not.

3. You hear a knock on your door. You open it and in front of you is a naked Danny Devito. What do you do?
The first step, towel. There is one on the laundry room door right by the front door. Danny will need a towel. The second step, we sit on the couch and share a beer. The dude has some stories. So many stories. Let’s get Danny talking.

4. What is the sexiest instrument?
The tenor saxophone. Duh. Proof? All those Yacht Rock one hit wonders.

5. The last meal you had will now be used to stop a bullet. How dead are you?
Pretty dead. I ate some Ethiopian. Lentils, roasted potatoes, and injera bread will stop no bullets.