Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 298

Image from 123vectors.com

Image from 123vectors.com

Greetings! Good to see you again. My blog break went well, but not as planned because I didn’t write much. However, I helped my wife ease into retirement mode.

A national handbell organization had a regional convention about an hour away, so the choir went. Two days of a lot of standing on a concrete floor means tired legs. Our choir had an individual coaching session. We didn’t play our piece well with foreign bells, but we got something out of the session. Meanwhile, we attended a concert where we heard this piece by the Purdue Bells, which is a wonderful way to usher in a new header.

Because of my fascination with images of deep space, this image of the Veil Nebula Supernova Remnant is from the Hubble Heritage Collection at the Hubble Gallery. To see my collection of past headers, click the Past Headers page/tab above the header.

I considered resuming Colors: The Musical immediately upon my return, but common sense prevailed because I value my guests. I’ll announce more here next week, but for those who need to know, see the Hear Ye page.

I seldom reblog my own or anyone else post, but I’m considering doing that with old posts – well, assuming I find something appropriate.

The death of pop music star Prince shocked us. Here’s an article about a secret concert he played in Cincinnati in 1984.

Competitors completed the Boston Marathon this past Monday. Although the news focused on the dominant presence of Ethiopians in the top places, the women’s wheelchair division caught my attention. For the fourth consecutive year, Tatyana McFadden – a Russian-born American won the division. Born with spina bifida, Tatyana spent the first six years of her life in a Russian orphanage without receiving physical therapy and without a wheelchair. Now that’s an amazing courage and determination!

Baseball season is underway and I have the following goals for my Cincinnati Reds:

  1. Win more games than the ‘62 Mets (40)
  2. Not finishing with the worst record in baseball
  3. Have at a team below them in the standings
  4. Finish closer to the team above them in the standing than below them
  5. Beyond this list would be a tremendous success

Because I’m easing my way back into my normal rhythm, no Explore post this weekend.

My wife received this pillow as a retirement gift – and I find it interesting.


Columnist David Ignatius wrote this interesting column about the Saudis.

At this point, I can listen to a news conference by House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WS) – which is an improved from predecessors John Boehner (R-OH) and Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).

Republican senators meeting with the Supreme Court nominee while continuing to block the confirmation process infuriates me even more than the block.

The 2016 primary has been quite bizarre, and to me, the title of this Ruth Marcus column is quite profound – An unpopularity content for the ages.

I find it interesting that the #2 contender in each party have this quality in common: an inability to work across the aisle. According to the Lugar Center – McCourt School Bipartisan Index at Georgetown University, not only do Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) have the lowest scores in 2015, each of them are in the bottom 11 of all senators since 1993. Here’s a good question for them: Have do you plan to get Congress to act on your ideas when you have a poor history of working within Congress?

Consider this possibility – Donald Trump (R-NY) and Sen Ted Cruz (R-TX) walk out of the Republican convention together to embrace a third-party run.

Embed from Getty Images

To lead you into your weekly dose of satire, The Onion offers tips for having your own vegetable garden.

Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)
Sixth beer steps in to speak for area man
Universe feels zero connection with guy tripping out on mushrooms
Breeze plays kick-ass riff on wind chimes
Pope Francis worried about job security after butting heads with new God
New study finds humans experience greatest joy when pushing “Skip Ad” button

Interesting Reads
Life-long learning and technology
A century of flight
Animal neat freaks
Augustine of Hippo
(Animation) Battle of Shiloh
(Video) Explaining burning ping-pong balls

To send you into this weekend, here’s a throwback in time with a touch of Bobby Darin and a dose of Prince. Have a safe weekend and in the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

59 thoughts on “Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 298

  1. Nice to see you twice in the same day Frank – welcome back! Hope Right is enjoying her first days of retirement 🙂 Poor Prince was a bit young to go – but then so was Bobby Darrin. Wonderful music from both these late greats!


    • Pauline,
      Greetings again. I think Right is still pinching herself … and she’s more relaxed by not having to get things ready for the next day, thinking about what has to be done, and fighting the rush hour traffic! Regarding Prince, I imagine we will hear autopsy reports soon … nonetheless, still too young.


  2. Welcome back, Frank! I was doing okay until I saw the crowd singing Prince songs outside his house, many wearing purple. Those images just went straight to my heart!
    You’re going to have to ease into your wife’s retirement as well… that’s a big transition for any couple and will take lots of patience… and personal space!!! But I’m sure you will work through the changes just fine. Staying busy is the secret! 🙂


  3. Glad to see you back! I plan to plow into your first two reads right away and also the article by David Ignatius on the Saudis.

    Your goals for the Reds aren’t quite an ouch, but close.

    “New study finds humans experience greatest joy when pushing ‘Skip Ad’ button” stirred a breeze.


  4. Welcome back, Frank. I’ve missed your posts, including your “interesting reads”. Speaking of which, the Ruth Marcus column was indeed very interesting. The unprecedented election of a consensus-unlikeable president bodes ill for the country. This, to my thinking, means that whoever wins, he or she will be under more than the usual pressure to try to unite the country patriotically by engaging in war. An important question for the voter’s mind should then be, I submit, “Who is least likely to yield to that?”

    As for the death of the musician Prince, I confess that I am utterly confounded by the public attention to him. His “music” is rhythmic, but it gives me no pleasure. How interesting that you included Bobby Darin, whose music does. I also like Sinatra, Garth Brooks and Abba. Am I just a melodic dinosaur?


    • Jim,
      Glad you enjoyed the Marcus column. Knowing your enjoy the reads, I keep my eye out for articles that my interest you … for instance, in this set the one about aviation.

      Music is so generational. Every generation has music they like, of which others don’t. Today we love the big band swing era .. .but older generations of the time were proclaiming it to be music of the devil. …. then when the early rock era of the late 50s & 60s (which appealed to a different generation) the same generation made the same proclamation that the previous generation made about them. … so no – you are not a melodic dinosaur.


    • Cynthia,
      The fact that you listened to the Purdue Bells made me smile! … and I think you agree that is one great song to get the audience’s attention at the beginning of the concert. Our director loved that song – to which I replied Me too and Oh no!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh how I love that “Skip Ad” button! It makes me delirious with happiness. 😀 Really sad about Prince. He was far too young to die. Loved the hand bell video. The conductor was fascinating to watch and the piece is really lovely. Happy weekend to you and your wife. 🙂


  6. Howdy! Now that you’re back, my current job is taking me away. Of course it’s not a holiday, so when I can blog, blogging will be my escape, my holiday. My current production is for the CBC, so it’s all Canadian. I am very thrilled to have Ed Asner in the show!
    RIP Prince! Love the new Header, Frank!


  7. You don’t have much faith in your Reds this year, do you Frank. Based on the no hitter thrown at them by the Cubs the other day, it’s understandable.
    The scenario you describe about the republican independent run is interesting in a bizarre sort of way. ..:)
    Excellent song choices.


  8. Welcome back to you too, aFrank, although to be honest in my absence I hadn’t noticed. Eeeekkk ….!!!
    I’m loooking forward to the return of the Musical:Colors as I missed quite a few weeks,
    Music and dance soothe my soul. R.I.P Prince … A devastating loss to the music world and to all who enjoyed and appreciated his unique talent.
    Have a GOOD weekend ….
    Isadora 😎


  9. Welcome back Frank. I like the pillow, adventures await and helping your wife ease into retirement sounds nice…it will be an adjustment for both of you.


  10. Nothing like a break for a recharge. That pillow is perfect – the best way to look at retirement.
    Just for amusement, what if Bernie and Trump marched off to run together as a third party. Hey, every time you think it can’t get any crazier….
    (now onward trying to read and catch up)


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