NobOdy WanTs to WoRk AnYMore

What about the feeling you get after having 4 days off work? A mini-staycation, and I know I don’t want to go back to work. Of course I don’t want to go back, nobody wants to go back. Everybody’s tired of trading our time on this planet for little scraps of useless paper; when you could be actually enjoying life, instead of working our asses off just to get the minimum necessary to survive.

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Some people collect baseball cards. Some collect, nick-knacks. And others might collect Barbie dolls.

For me, it was Mopar Fendertags.

What’s a fendertag, you might ask? It’s a metal tag that is embossed with codes for the major options for a specific car, so the body shop could properly outfit the body shell as it was progressing down the assembly line. Mopar (Dodge, Plymouth, Chrysler) made some amazing muscle cars back in the 1960s & 70s and every one of them had a unique fendertag. And every tag tells a story.

My fendertag collection had consisted of over 400 physical tags as well as thousands of photos of other tags. The vast majority of my tags had come from cars that I found in junkyards all across the country. Since they were “dead” cars, I considered removing the tag akin to giving the car a proper burial. The memory of the car lives on simply by looking at the codes and reassembling (in your head) what the car looked like when it was new. The data also serves to help decode and justify other cars & tags.

Sometimes you run across a very odd car, based on it’s options. And sometimes you just find an odd tag. Here are a few examples.

A loaded Dodge Mirada with a slant 6 engine, but the 2nd tag shows that this is not just another mom’s driver…

Anyone have a 1968 Hemi Road Runner that’s missing it’s tag? I traded my labor to replace a guy’s engine in exchange for this tag. Unfortunately, 1968 tags don’t have the full VIN on them. They do have the Order Number, and so does the broadcast sheet, so the only way to connect this tag with the actual car is only if the broadcast sheet still exists too.

’71 4 door Satellite cop car with a 383 Magnum engine. Cops love their horsepower as much as the next guy….

Cops also like their bright colors, like Rallye Red…

What’s not to love about a Purple 340 4 speed Duster?

Panther Pink was offered in 1970 and it sold so bad, that it was cancelled after just 3 months. Any car that was factory painted in this color is usually worth saving. Unfortunately, this one was in the Fresno Pick & Pull back in 1988…

What’s not to like about a ’71 Charger in Sassy Grass Green? Unless it’s powered by a Slant-6 engine and 3 speed stick shift trans.

A red ’67 GTX with 440 Magnum engine is all-business in the go-fast world.

I wasn’t able to get the actual fendertag from this car (it was riveted on) but I did get the 2nd tag. This was a 1987 Lebaron (J body) coupe. A “pilot car” is one of the first cars made for a specific year or line.

A “body in white” is a car body that is assembled and sold without a drive train. Unfortunately, this 2nd tag somehow got separated from the primary tag, so I can’t tell you what the car was.

Another one that got disconnected from the first tag, so I don’t know exactly what car it came from…

I’ve seen 2-tone cars and I’ve seen special order colors, but someone really REALLY wanted to make sure it got noticed….

I used to own a turquoise ’69 Charger with a slant-6 engine. Rarer than a Hemi car….

The ’69 Hemi Road Runner I used to own. Sorry for the crappy picture, it’s from 1989. And since it’s a rusty mess, here’s the codes:

RM23J9A147586 E74 D21 Q5 H2X X9 A10 100554 Q5 7W N96 V21 26 921 644 605

Challenger R/T S/E with a late build date and high VIN…

I’m curious, how often did a ’69 Charger S/E come with a small block?

Loaded ’71 Road Runner, 3 speed stick, Y39 Special Order, and the word TEST finishing off the tag. And the paint code is GJ6 (not FJ6)….

How about a 1983 (first year) Shelby Charger? Sure, it’s front wheel drive, but odd none the less….

And sometimes you run across a tag that is a fake. Calling these out hopefully keeps the hobby (as well as the cars themselves) to a level of honesty.

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Capitalism Actually Suppresses Creativity

Yes, you heard me correctly – capitalism actually SUPPRESSES creativity. How creative can you be if all of your time is spent working, just to pay the bills? Call it a “byproduct” of capitalism, but keeping the working man working is the only way capitalists can keep acquiring their wealth. Why change tried & true methods if you’ve already figured out how the game is rigged, as well and how you can bend the rules just a little bit in your favor, right?

Did any of the great philosophers in history have to work a second job? Few had to, because some of them were born into wealthy families.

Look at what any great writer is able to do, once he gets past the point of just working just to survive. Writing, especially a BIG writing project, is extremely time consuming and labor intensive. Could Tolstoy have written “War and Peace” if he had a regular 9-to-5 job?

Would Carl Sagan become a great writer and scientist if he was working as a plumber? Of course not.

The US government employed 130,000 people to create the first nuclear bomb. For comparison, the Apollo program employed 400,000 Americans and required the support of over 20,000 industrial firms and universities. Where would space travel be today if those folks had been employed (back then) in getting us to the moon, rather than trying to blow up another country?

It’s one thing if a person is unable to follow his/her dreams because they can’t afford it. It’s another thing when that person can’t follow their dreams because of their parent’s financial woes. That’s a “cycle of poverty” that can develop into “generational poverty”

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True automation

True automation does not require a person to write a report or assemble a graph. If your job includes any of these, then YOU are a bottle neck towards true automation.

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Testosterone Poisoning

Testosterone poisoning sounds like a joke, but it’s not. Sure, testosterone is the male hormone that makes men “manly”, but like many things in life, too much can be a problem.

And even though testosterone poisoning might not sound like a major calamity, what if a government agency got ahold of this idea and started to regulate testosterone levels in order to keep the overall population at ease?

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Unleashing your inner OCD

My wife happened to be out of town the evening in question. I had spent the day running errands, including picking up some scrap metal from a friend of mine. He was happy to give me the metal, not only because it cleared out his backyard, but also because he knew I had a scrap pile at home, so I’d make a few bucks when I turned it all in.

After loading up, we were chatting, and he mentioned that he had some smoked trout, and would I like one? Sure! I love trout and even though I’m a lousy fisherman, that fact alone usually doesn’t deter me from trying. (It’s called “fishing”, not “catching”, right?) Something that might make a difference in this story is knowing that my friend is also a cannabis grower. Now, I don’t know if he “smoked” the trout in the same building that he uses to dry his “product” but looking back I think it’s a fair assumption that he did. So, I head home with my partially full truck bed and dinner’s main course in hand.

That night I heated up the trout in the microwave, cracked open a beer, and enjoyed both. It was a small fish, so I decided to warm up a can of clam chowder to round out my “seafood surprise” dinner. And oh, what a surprise it would later be.

After dinner, something outside the back window had caught my eye. I went out into the back yard and saw several illuminated paper bags floating up into the night sky. I called my wife (as I do whenever we are apart) to discuss the day and bid her a good night. I tried to explain the bags and she did not understand what I was talking about. It would seem that the actual words did not reside in my mouth, so I bid her a good night and wrapped up the call.

I wasn’t feeling ‘bad’, but I knew something was ‘off’. I tried to write down what had happened, and the words were just a scribbled mess on a Post-It note. And I actually *TRIED* to write, concentrating on what I was writing, making sure to be clear, making sure to describe exactly what had happened. But again ‘words’ just were not working.

I decided to turn in early, figuring that sleeping it off would be the best course of action. I nodded off in bed, but about an hour later my body awoke me with what can only be described as a full-on panic alert – my stomach had cramped, and I knew I had to get to the toilet *NOW*, because this was going to get really ugly, really quick. I jumped from the bed and tried to make the 4 steps to the master bathroom, but on step 3 it started. Even though I had covered my mouth with one hand, the pink puke had started to make a hasty exit, and nothing was going to hold it back. By the 2nd surge, I was over the toilet, so I was more than happy to let it catch the mess that was exiting my body. After flushing it away, I was too weak to get up, so I just laid down on the bathroom floor for some time. (I would later estimate it to be 45 minutes, but given my mental state at the time, it might have been only a few minutes.) When I did get up, I cleaned the bathroom floor as well as some pink ewww spots that were in the bedroom. Then I somehow got back to the bed and finished out the evening there.

Lucky for me, it had been a Saturday, so I had all of Sunday to recover. Monday morning, I went into work and told my buddy of the adventure I had. I showed him the Post-It note and we both agreed that something had gone awry in my system, most likely food poisoning. He said he had not experienced anything like that, so maybe it was the clam chowder?

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Eternal Bounce Universe

What does this hypothesis say? Basically, that instead of the universe starting from a single point (the singularity), instead the universe has been a series of collapse & reinflation over and over again. But this doesn’t answer the question of “How did the first one get started?”.

Not knowing an answer does not mean “God did it” or “I give up”. Not knowing the answer means we have to continue looking for the answer.

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Word Salad – “Resting Bitch Face”

According to Urban Dictionary, Resting Bitch Face is:

  • The face a person makes that makes them look as if they are angry, irritated, or depressed, but are usually just relaxing or deeply thinking about something.
  • This mainly female disorder causes a person’s face to convey a high level of bitchiness when, in actuality, they aren’t feeling very bitchy at all.

“Are you okay? You look pissed”

“Yeah, I’m fine, this is just my resting bitch face.”

Apparently, this is something that I have, because my wife accuses me often of “being pissed” when I am not. And of course, there is no way to counter her accusation without sounding actually bitchy.

But I don’t think I’ve always been this way. Here’s proof that I used to smile and laugh a lot!

But somehow “youthful exuberance” always seems to get pushed right out of us as we become adults.

Carl Sagan once said: “My experience is, you go talk to kindergarten kids or first-grade kids, you find a class full of science enthusiasts. And they ask deep questions. “What is a dream, why do we have toes, why is the moon round, what is the birthday of the world, why is grass green?” These are profound, important questions. They just bubble right out of them. You go talk to 12th grade students and there’s none of that. They’ve become leaden and incurious. Something terrible has happened between kindergarten and 12th grade and it’s not just puberty.”

As children, we view the world with innocent eyes. As we get older, we start to see the world as it really is. Our parents paint the world with a rose-colored brush, and it takes years for us to see the world for what it actually is.

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The Collection

When Uncle Frank passed away in 1997, I inherited his gun collection. Most of them are gone now, sold to help pay the bills…

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How does this directly affect you? It doesn’t!

Why are you nagging about the neighbor having some stuff in the bed of his truck? It’s not your truck, or your stuff, or your driveway. It does not affect you. PERIOD! It’s not even unsightly. Hell, it’s the first time he’s used his shiny truck as a truck!

And why do you get pissed off at me, saying things like “Why do you do that?”, when all I did was express my opinion on a subject? Am I not allowed to have a differing opinion than you? I don’t accuse YOU of things out of the blue and it baffles me why you do that to me. Pretty sure you don’t treat other people that way (at least I hope you don’t).

Stop looking for stuff to complain about. Just because “reality TV shows” can ‘manufacture drama’ where none previously existed, is no reason for you to follow suit.

Life is simple, people make it complicated.

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