The Thinking Viking is mobilizing.

The weather is clearly aimed at spring.  People are waking up, finally starting to listen.

But shouting at a twitter post or a Facebook meme isn’t going to be enough.

An artfully worded comment on a wordpress blog like this one does little  for the bigger picture.

The embers of the socio-political wildfire are spread wide, time to fan the flames.

I think you know what I am talking about.

:straps on boots:

#FeelTheBern  #TeamBernie #Bernie2016


Open Letter to Bernie Sanders

Posted: April 6, 2016 in My Whirled

The Thinking Viking has checked his credentials, and confirmed.

Senator Sanders, I qualify.

I suggest The Thinking Viking as a running mate and VP for your 2016 Presidential Campaign.!/articles/2/essays/82/presidential-eligibility

I would like to invite you and your family to my family’s home for dinner.

I’ll cook – trust me, I know my way around a kitchen.  I can serve about 8.

Let’s discuss your VP choices and have some dinner.  And maybe ice cream after…or pie.  or nothing.

Think about it,


#TeamBernieColorado #Bernie2016 #FeelTheBern



Open Letter to Hillary Clinton

Posted: April 4, 2016 in My Whirled

Hey Hillary,
…long time, no chat.    I…think you heard from my friend Bernie, though.  Eh, no matter.

I tried to get Donnie T. to come to lunch with me, talk, get things worked out before it got out of hand.  I failed.  I had to withdraw.

He’s a fucking train wreck.  Not worth my time.  You, however, are worthy.  I offer a town hall lunch with the Peoples’ Republic of Boulder at  the Wendy’s  at 55th and Arapaho, Boulder, CO, at a time and date of your choice.  I will moderate.

So, bring your Goldman-Sachs speeches and an appetite for spicy chicken sandwiches and let’s have a talk.

Think about it.


Editorial Post- Script:

“We don’t come alone …
we are fire ..
we are stone..
we’re the hand that writes then quickly moves away..”

R.J. Dio

#OWS ‪#‎Bernie2016‬ ‪#‎TeamBernie‬



I was looking forward to your accepting my offer for lunch and having a chat.  After seeing you and Chris Matthews tonight, I withdraw my offer.

I was hoping to have a duel of wits with you, but …to paraphrase many people..
..I refuse to fight an un-armed man.

Good day, sir.

And fuck off.

That is all.


The Thinking Viking is taking the gloves off.

Donald Trump, I asked you nicely to meet me for lunch.

Haven’t heard from you, and my crew is getting anxious;  I tried getting Sara Palin, she hasn’t responded either. Eh, she’s probably trying to hunt a penguin in …Alaska.  Good luck with that, Sara.

Regardless, the crew was waiting for word, and I can’t put them off any more.

They have thier marching orders, they are a freelance  crew and are already en route.

It’s too late to stop it.


More as soon as my fingers thaw out.


#OpTrump #DumpTrump

Think, please.




The Thinking Viking uses facebook.

Big surprise, eh?  But a few days ago I sort of lost my cool.  I wrote something with F-Bombs, in violation of the social media PG-13 code. I wasn’t going to say anything more, was just going to let it be…  but …

THEN..I saw Sara Palin yesterday…

Talking about how Trumfp protesters were “thugs” using force to block that ass hat’s “first amendment rights.”. YAY ‘MERICA!!!

I fucking lost it.  I repost now.

“To anyone upset that protesters shut down Don@ld Trumf in Chicago. In response to one person in particular. <name withheld>
1. Free people assembling in a public area and speeking out loud is free speech, it is EXACTLY what that gas-bag was doing.
Not a paid, ticketed, invite only event.

Public event.

2. I have reloaded my f-bombs.

This is NOT SUPPRESSION OF FREE FUCKING SPEECH YOU FUCKING MORON. These are FREE PEOPLE talking to other FREE PEOPLE and PUBLIC area. First Fucking Amendment.,
Did the national fucking Guard goose step in with guns and haul his racist fascist ass to jail? NO.

‪#‎OccupyWallStreet‬ ‪#‎OWS‬




We have not yet met face to face, and I would love some quality time to get to know you better. You have not replied to my invitation to lunch, I know you are busy as am I, how about Wendy’s by 55th and Arapaho, Boulder, CO  Tuesday – Thursday sometime? I’m open afternoons  midweek.. You bring your crew, I’ll bring mine.



ed: This was posted before the incident in Chicago.

#Bernie2016 #FeelTheBern #TeamBernie


The Thinking Viking is angry.  (update:still angry)

I’ve put up with it for a long time.  “Freedom of speech” they say.  Then they lie, and spew hate…a hundred years ago they would have been standing on a street corner, ignored by most as raving lunatics.   Maybe if it was printed in a newspaper we would lend these sort of words some credence (hmmm slippery slope here) .

Who believes THAT? We would say as we walked past.  Wow, now that dude is deranged – get him a tinfoil hat! haha.  We would turn our heads and with simple quiet social pressure make it clear that these ideas were not OK.  It’s OK to talk about them, but to give audience to lies gives power.

In one day, those lunatics would reach maybe two other people  who would listen, and they would be exhausted from shouting into the crowds of people ignoring them.

Now we have the internet, FOX News, CNN, Twitter.

One public misguided comment can now reach millions.  A repeated flawed, borderline evil idea, re-spewed by thousands of public figures with perceived authority, can convince people of fucking anything.

Convince them that grabbing a gun and marching down to Planned Parenthood – to stop the sale of unborn baby parts to Al Qaeda before Obama takes your guns – is the best course of action on Thanksgiving weekend.

When your words have a body count, you are responsible.  Even if you didn’t pull the trigger.

This has been edited post publishing

Had to get this out.

Still thinking about it.



ed:  One hundred years ago we didn’t have aluminum foil to make hats from.  My bad.






The Thinking Viking has video from the 10/10/2015 Bernie Sanders rally in Boulder, CO.  #Bernie2016  #TeamBernie

Here are the links.  Wordpress doesn’t play very nice with embedded external media, expect updates.  I’ll edit more editorial notes tonight.

Please bear in mind these clips were taken with my camera held above my head to see over the crowd.

Open source video, share as desired.  Haven’t had time to tag the youtube pages even.

Think about it.


The Thinking Viking has a long history of fast cars.

The first time I knew I was going over 100 MPH… mom, you loved the 1976 V6 Mustang II.  It was the first of the gutless Mustangs, but it still had a v6 in a small frame.

South Padre Island, 1982?.  Way past the beaches on access roads…  Mom floors it, muttering “no damn cops out HERE..” on the sandy back road to the beach, years and years BEFORE it became a Spring Break destination…

She turns around and drives back at 55…

We get a blowout a half mile after this point.  Still 5 miles from the bridge, gas station etc. Nothing but sand and sea around us.  Night closing in.  Cell phone? What is that?  I learn how to change a tire.

Happy Odin’s Day!

Keep thinking everyone.


Quick Thoughts on a Tuesday Morning

Posted: October 20, 2015 in My Whirled

The Thinking Viking has pondered this one for years.

Why, in America, do we consider people “adult” at 18 – at least, adult enough to vote, get married, start families, sign legal contracts for lifelong commitments, bank loans… life loans.. i.e. be “ready” to fight and die for “our country” with a machine guy gifted by Uncle Sam… and yet….

These kids are still not “adult enough” to buy a god damned beer until the magic age of 21?

Twenty plus years of “hmmmmm  weell,…” and this one eludes me.

Still thinking about it.



The Thinking Viking has seen his fair share of candidates speak. It is not my first rodeo, as they say.

From Jerry Brown in a Colorado Community College years ago to Ron Paul on the University of California – Berkeley grounds in 2012  (I was there as an observer, more for entertainment than support; please see ), to actually caring enough as a 20-30 something to follow presidential politics and watch these paper puppet$ fight for slices of a pie. I got so pissed off I was a libertarian for a while. That didn’t last… once I really thought about it.

Now I have seen Bernie Sanders.   And I have a good feeling about this man.

We made our way to Bernie’s rally in Boulder on 10/10/2015, after securing tickets from a campaign volunteer my wife knows.  Traffic was heavy but we got lucky and scored a shady parking spot nearby. We made our way to the gates, met up with our friend, gave her a ticket, and went in.  That was …. interesting.

As we went through security to the event with our locally released only limited issue tickets, the “guard” asked “Kristin” (not her real name – this si my old friend) …asked her to open her purse as a check for weapons etc..and then asked what was “in that container…” – “Is it marijuana?” He asked casually.

Those words that would mean jail time a few years back. but.. Colorado, you know? 2015. So, he really didn’t need to ask. It was clearly labeled as such, with a tax stamp and everything.

“Yes, it is. It’s medical, here’s my card.” She says, opening her wallet to show a green cross card.

“OK, go on in.”

Times are changing.

So there I was with my wife and an old friend from my dangerous years, sitting in a crowd of at least 9,000 people, on the deep soft turf of the center lawn of Potts Field, East Campus, University of Colorado, Boulder – my Alma Mater, BTW, 1999 grad. – on a bright warm Saturday afternoon. October 10, 2015. My how things have changed.

So the crowd kept coming, pouring in like a slow stampede. We bought t-shirts, got free bumper stickers, and jockeyed for position to see the stage. The rather short stage. Bad ass sound system, through, fit a for a rock concert. Flat field. Not a venue for short people to see the guest of honor in what quickly became standing room only. We were somewhere in the middle, and I couldn’t see the edge of the crowd, even being slightly above average height wise. My.. vertically challenged wife had no nope hope beyond a lucky peek through the crowd.

The crowd. Not just students by a LONG shot. The slightly-older-than-us couple behind us looked like they walked over from their porch on a lazy afternoon, smelled of beer, but looked quite happy. Next to us, three (four? one left) most-likely-freshmen girls with a dude who must have been one of their fathers. Smiling and happy, girls all seated on the grass in a circle on some sort of media streaming the speech they were too short to see. Next to us, a young Hispanic couple, a group of frat boys all in Bernie t-shirts a size too small (they ran out of “Large” – I feel your problem dudes, the shirt I got is kinda small), a circle of aging hippies dancing to the music with their eyes blissfully closed, a gang of spandex clad bikers, sans bikes who really should have taken off their helmets – blocking sight, you know? And dozens and dozens of ordinary people in sunglasses, t-shirts, water bottles, smartphones, some alone, some on twos, small groups… honestly if felt like a music festival, atmosphere wise. Who ever was DJing the pre-speech music was making people dance.🙂

And moving through the crowd slowly, several people with cameras with optics good enough to get good shots from this far from the stage. Like me. Yeah, camera phones are handy, but it hard to beat a 20x optical zoom on a 16 MP Canon DSLR.

So I got to see him speak. Got to look in his eyes. I saw an old man. An angry man. A old, fierce warrior, but a warrior proven in battle and old enough that if he put away his sword and shield no one would question. A grandfather. But… more warrior, more knight than elderly statesman. He never unbuckled that sword, his shield he carries with him daily. Still fights every  day for what is right and just. Still fierce and dangerous. Saying what no one has had the guts to stand up and say. He’s been doing it for years, and I think part of the look in his eyes is the look of a man who is sad that it took this long for people to listen. That, as his age, he has to lead his government away from the madness that should be painfully clear we are steaming toward, like some mad runaway train. So he takes a deep breath, forgets his age, and bellows in rage.

IMG_1975IMG_1986 IMG_1981 IMG_1978 IMG_1976 IMG_1962

I feel it, too. It’s why I took to the streets with Occupy and Anonymous. (..And why I still do.)

There is something rotten in the state of Denmark. (ed: HAMLET QUOTE – Shakespeare…. arr  gg)
I’ve smelled it for years.

Bernie smells it too.

From Citizens United and Super PACs buying our elections, partisan politics producing nothing solutions, to the military industrial complex having a strangle hold on foreign policy, media controlled by a third shadow power, to trade laws and patent laws that only help shareholders, to Big Pharma, big agriculture the EPA and the FDA all trading people and favors, the federal reserve and our love affair with Wall Street that only helps the 1%, to the insanity that the Tea Party has tap danced into.. to the Evangelical right and the bigotry they show and how it’s being used to pit american against american…I could go on. The police.  The drug war.  Private prisons.  And on. And on.

But – it all fits. He’s right. If we don’t do SOMETHING we are not going to leave this world a better place. It’s time for a socio-political revolution. The revolution won’t be televised. That battle has been lost. But we are legion. We have the internet, we have millions of cameras, millions of facebook, youtube, instragram, etc account.  Boots on the ground. Each of us is a point of contact with people every day who are being slowly crushed by what our country is becoming.  We can fight the money, fight that corruption, with our own hands, our own energy.  Too long we have just sat back and taken it.

I won’t take it anymore. Now I have an ally in someone with the potential to be the most influential man on Earth; he sees what I see. It’s time for Team Bernie to rise. I fund his campaign.  Only politician in my entire life I have given money to fund a campaign.  He’s earned it, he deserves it, and America deserves Bernie Sanders.

I #FeelTheBern. I have said it before, I am saying it again. I want Bernie Sanders to be the next President of the United States of America.

Think about it.




The Thinking Viking is, technically, first mate aboard the Saltshaker, a 39′ Contessa racing yacht moored at an undisclosed location. (Plan B, and/or zombies you know?), and we (me and the captain) were trying ti figure out why the tachometer wasn’t working. Volts, temp, both also from engine leads, were good.  Ahh – look – loose grounds. I’m watching the gauge as he tightens down the nuts, and turns it on, sure we had found the trouble.

Nope. We almost set the boat on fire.

I just now  got home after fixing the damage a week later with a third man brought in (who happened to be in town totally coincidentally and is the guy who I learned a LOT from. OLD friend.)

Here’re the pics from the job.  Enjoy.

IMG_1713 IMG_1714IMG_1715 IMG_1716 IMG_1717 IMG_1718 IMG_1719 IMG_1720 IMG_1707 IMG_1708 IMG_1709 IMG_1710 IMG_1711 IMG_1712

Thanks for coming, and don’t forget your soldering iron

The  Thinking Viking recently met a very interesting couple.  I was eating lunch at Wendy’s after visiting my credit union in the same complex, and at first all I noticed was a nice photo of a pretty young woman, black and white, from her clothing I’d guess 1940’s, and a large pair of thick glasses, old and black.  There was an older-ish  woman in the table across, but no one seated next to these items.

Meh.  I’m HUNGRY.

Then Johnny comes up.  Very Old Man. Once pretty tall (I’d guess 6’2′) but wow – old.  But he is happy, chatting with the Wendy’s employee bringing his food to the table – he uses a walker, and isn’t going very quick, but he is steady. Aand heads to the table….with the photo.  The woman across the aisle asks him about the woman in the picture.  He speaks animatedly for several minutes.  Happy and alert, smart and kind even at his advanced and age.

After I overheard what he said, I finished my food, tossed it in the trash, and walked back to his table.

“Hi, my name’s Matt, and I write sometimes, and people read it. I’d love to tell your story…”

He beamed.  And he told me.


Continued in part II after I’ve had time to listen (he let me record him only asking that it “not go in the newspapers”)

I promise, it will be worth it.


The Thinking Viking was in, shall we say, dire straights. St.Patrick’s day, San Francisco Bay, adrift under the Bay Bridge. The trip home on board the 39′ sailboat was..not going to plan. The plan did not include sails.  Thing has a diesel engine that is called by many “bulletproof”.  But…the silver bullet – the engine was over heated, fan belt broke, radiator boiling, the main sail was completely stowed for long term berthing, and we were adrift, under the Bay Bridge, in the path of the various SF Bay Ferrys and the big freighters heading for Oakland.

The internet meme joke about “How to Avoid Large Ships” suddenly has meaning. (ed: The correct meme is ”

How to Avoid Huge Ships”) wow – font copied, too.


I try to keep us pointed towards home, but with no power, it’s barely possible.  Captain breaks out a knife and the cursing begins.  Zip tie after zip tie is cut to free the main sail.  Cursing continues.

More cursing.  Coast Guard almost runs us down.

That motherfucking sail has to be lined up like a 60 foot zipper to get started.  Frustrated Captain can’t get it in place.  I take over because I see the stress is getting to him, he’s rushing in a mild – and well deserved – panic.

The sail starts to raise. Damn this thing is heavy, it’sjust not going up more than an inch or so at a time. Fuck the winch. I grap the ropes coming from the mast and basically lean my full weight on them. Sail raises a foot. Again. and Again. And again. My hands are chafing.

But at half sail, the boat starts to aim and drive.  The dry stiff rope are loosened and the winches start to work and the two of us get that damn thing up.

At this point, we return to the cut version of “Adrift” Adrift.  And there was much rejoicing.

Thank Neptune the tide was coming IN.

And we had a goram SPARE FAN BELT -that the Captain installed while I was sailing us slowly home.

Thinking, still better than being eaten by zombies, eh?


The Thinking Viking learned to sail as a child, at a smallish “yacht club” on a lake in central Michigan. Yacht Club in central Michigan means “place for dudes to go and drink beer and store their boats that they almost never use”.  But my dad was different – whenever he took me, we always set sail for at least a trip across the lake. After a while, he let me drive sometimes. Later, he let me take the boat out solo. It was a 14′ Laser, which Wiki now informs me is a racing boat.  I had no idea.  But I could handle the thing pretty well.  Anyhow, thanks dad, I miss ya.

This is a 14′ Laser  landfallnav_2250_110400305

Fast forward 25 years.  My landlord and friend says “Hey call my brother, he wants to take the boat out on Saturday.”  This is because I mentioned my dad teaching me to sail during random conversation. I figure it was his 22 foot something or other.  I was wrong. The next picture is referred to as “foreshadowing”.  



The boat in question turned out to be a Contessa-39, “a one-ton class” thirty-nine foot racing yacht, seaworthy and tall, and he didn’t want to show it off, he needed me to drive it, needed to burn off some old fuel and get working on some aging electronics and other bits the ship needed. A fifteen thousand pound up to 11-man crew sailboat with a 50 horse diesel and freaking RADAR.  Um. This Is Not My Father’s Sailboat.


But you know what?

It drives the same, it has a tiller, just like that tiny boat I used to zip around on.  That day we just pottered from Alameda Marina to up around Jack London Square, boat ran fine, I got my feet wet so to speak.  I was offered the position of First Mate, which I accepted.

Couple days later, word comes down that the Captain is taking the boat to San Francisco Friday night.  I take some PTO and leave work at lunch, head to the marina, sleeping bag, backpack, camera, etc load up, and off we go, me the Captain, and his brother.  I then learned we are going to Pier-39. Um.  The one with all the tourists, lining the docks next to the sea lions hanging out. And we’ll be going to a St. Patrick’s Day block party downtown. I brought beer.

Trip out went fine, I got to pilot it under the Bay Bridge, got to watch all those tourists watching us pulling in a taking berth #2A.  Me jumping from the prow to grab dock lines, all of us tying the ship down.  We had arrived.

Fast forward to next morning. I slept great – the swaying and noises of surf have always been good for that.

And we head out, just me and the Captain because of work conflict, no worries, only need two for this kind of trip – I mean, we weren’t even hoisting sail, right? No problem.

And then as I am deiseling us past the Bay Bridge – homeward bound this time….Some Is Wrong With The Engine, it overheating. Shut it down. And we come to the title of this piece.

Technically, I was adrift in the Pacific on a racing yacht with a dead engine.  And it has all it’s SAILS. In San Francisco “usually windy” Bay.

We hastily raise the main sail, capt. frantically uncovering it and prepping – task normally done before you head out, while I keep us in position, just  following the tide at this point.  The sails haven’t been up this season, and it takes some serious muscle to hoist, but next thing I know the wind catches…and it comes back just like riding a bike.  Under a mild to middling wind this thing is faster than possible under diesel, it leans over and slides toward home berth. Capt. goes below to see what’s up.

Just a fan belt, and he has a spare.  Smart man, but I knew that.  But he can’t find it.

By the time he found it we were almost at the marina entrance and he took over to guide it through the sea wall into calm water, and …we just let it drift.  Fifteen minutes after he had found the spare belt, we are fixed, post-haste, and we headed to the berth under power. (hey AT&T and or WordPress, what’s with the lag? I edited out most of these typos already, but looks like a bunch failed to save. Ah, the life of a blog)

So, 1. it’s a good idea to learn to sail. 2. Be prepared, never know when you might need a $12 fan belt.

Think about it.


PS Cut scenes are here: (AKA what really happened) Adrift – The Cut Scene AKA What Really Happened


Posted: February 24, 2013 in Humor, My Whirled, Stories
Tags: , , ,

The Thinking Viking often goes to a local greasy spoon for bacon and eggs on Sunday mornings.  I may have to choose a new location.

After I polished of a big plate of greasy goodness, I found I had no cash – oops. So, I pay with my debit card.  Cashier tries to hand me the receipt, but it slips from her grasp and is suddenly blown away by a stiff draft.  I snatch it mid air while holding the pen I was preparing to sign it with.  The cashier gasps – “wow, nice catch”.  The owner is right behind her.  “Wow, dude, really nice catch”.  The old woman having breakfast next to the register is giving me a strange look.

Me:  “I… I am”

” I am…”


I look around cautiously, and my right hand writes the words on that CC receipt that were floating through my head.


I left a 30% tip.


The next morning.

Posted: February 10, 2013 in My Whirled, Stories
Tags: , , , ,

The Thinking Viking is going to share a bit.  This is an almost-true story. Only two bits omitted or changed.  It will be short.

I’m not generally the type to pick up strange women at parties and get almost freaky crazy in the back bedroom of some strange house then and take ’em home.  But it has happened.  Years ago….We were both kind of  drunk at a friends party, and then later …shared a cab home. She lived within walking distance of my place, and well, one thing lead to another and we had some more drinks and..

Fell asleep watching TV in my bed, cuddling.  Far as I recall nothing more happened. Yeah, I know.

I woke up alone, and didn’t mind a bit.  It was a Sunday morning much like today.

Just thinking. Have a nice Sunday.


The Thinking Viking is aware of the title’s historic significance.  Deliberately chosen.

Here’s my proposal. I’m  just gonna spew it out and think about it later.

At 16 every citizen gets a one shot pistol and is allowed to carry two bullets, after they -required by law- pass a gun safety class taught in the public school and graded with the curriculum. Teachers and school counselors much approve the graduation of the student with weapon right – if not approved, they enter adulthood sans firearms rights.  Appeal-able.

All  guns carry chips so that only their own can fire them, or only member of active duty military for military weapons.  These implanted, biometric, chips also record a date and timestamp for every firing.

At 18, every citizen must go through basic training in the military branch of their choice, or if physically or mentally unable, then these individual may not be considered for any heavier weapon then the one shot two bullet rule. they are given a voter ID and free health care. They are allowed to carry their one shot weapon and both rounds of ammo. 

Those who pass the mental test, the training and   who do not wish to continue military service are issued a photo ID (voter registration and driver’s license all in one perhaps? if you want to go there about voter fraud, make em FREE and require everyone to have one ), a chipped 5 round .38 special and  50 rounds of ammo – ammo resupplied monthly .  They must practice monthly at a government licensed range and prove that they used at least 40 rounds in ensuring their marksmanship is good.  They are also given free health care, but are REQUIRED to carry their weapons. They are the citizen militia. Oh, and ear plugs for the firing range, they get those, too.

Anyone wishing to own heavier weapons must  buy and maintain hunting permits or have demonstrable need and pass through  – oh for fucks sake SOME KIND OF CHECK before we let some batshit psychopath have a rifle that can kill from 500 yards and even semi-automatic can empty its clip in about 30 seconds…  And ….  Please don’t flame me with bullshit about how guns do not kill people.  Or that a civilian AR “isn’t the same” – I know how these guns work, my brother owns several and I have fired more guns than most people reading this.  There’s a big one under my bed. So they aren’t “machine guns” technically.  So fucking what?  M16A2 is 3-round burst only – yes, the Army doesn’t use quite a few of their own rifles in full auto – some models don’t even have the switch.  Granted, these are shooting three bullets every trigger pull, but it not full-auto.


Military weapons will not be usable by those with civil chips and no common ammunition shall be manufactured. military ammo – only use-able in military guns, with the converse also being true.


Think about it.


The Thinking Viking is still thinking about a lot of drafts, so, to keep things interesting, here’s two more pics.  Undisclosed location.  Enjoy.coverIMG_0538

You don’t need to think about this, but fungi were reclassified a not so long while back as belonging to the the same branch of life that produced US (animals, chemo-autotrophs, or organisms that cannot photosynthesize and must consume “food” to grow) eventually. These are your extremely distant cousins.

But I ask you to please , think about it.


PS I will give a massive WOW THIS PERSON KNOWS THEIR STUFF shout out for you if  ANYONE can identify these….



The Thinking Viking has been taking a holiday, you may or may not have noticed. To keep you  entertained, I am offering some photos.

wordpress is not the best place to share big photos…dozens more but only these two uploaded with out error.  So, here are my feet. I’m the one NOT wearing tights.

The Thinking Viking drives a compact 4×4 Subaru with the outback sport package.  Great car, solid, fast, not terribly expensive, but not cheap either   SO, anyway, I haven’t been writing here much since the election – so much fodder, I still have several drafts in the works, but that brings me to today’s topic.

A tool is only as effective as it’s user, and then only as effective as that user is able or chooses to use said tool. Cars are no different.  Sometimes you need to use your car a bit closer to its potential, push it a little, to get the best results.  And sometimes, mutual respect can create friendships without words.

Here’s the situation: California has been hit recently with some pretty nasty weather – they called it a “river in the air” and over several storms dumped several inches of rain.  I was driving to work during one of these deluges Wednesday morning (12/5/2012) , I was running hella late (but not worried about work – people understand with the weather) and I was just pulling onto the last stretch before journey’s end – a frontage road, long and straight with a  extra wide shoulder – primarily so that the big rigs that use the place can park off road and such, so its wide and basically a road right next to the road.  I usually hit this stretch at 45-50 MPH and the commute is done.

Here’s what happens this day and a couple of days later, via slightly edited (put in dates and corrected a couple of typos, may still be some) Facebook posts and comments.

“12/05/2012 To: The driver of the white Cadillac Escalade who I left covered in mud about fifteen minutes ago. 1. Sorry, I’m not normally an ass in traffic 2. You should have taken that off-road route around the construction and minor accident that I did (TIP you are driving one of the most powerful SUVs on the fucking planet) 3. the other Subaru behind me clearly thought the same, and I am not apologizing for his mud

Like · · Share
SJ- Seriously, the only reason I look at caddies now is because of Rock and Roll! That was the best advertising they ever did! It made me actually want a Cadillac for about 3 seconds!
Wednesday at 9:43am · Like

MJ idiot was sitting there balked at a “road closed” sign that only closed about 30 feet of “not paved’ construction zone, there was a minivan-minivan accident that was blocking the right turn a block ahead and piling everything up…. so yeah, I went off road and hit a rather big mud puddle at the bend…and the WRX behind me did exactly the same thing
Wednesday at 10:04am · Like

MJ *construction zone that was not being constructed due to weather – no workers put in danger
12/6/2012 -is it wrong that I am still grinning about splashing that shiny white Escalade with mud during the hellish rain past couple days?
Like · · Share · Promote · @MEJohnsen on Twitter · 23 hours ago via Twitter ·
AM and KTY like this.

MJ I think Subaru would approve.
22 hours ago · Like

AM Not wrong at all.
You don’t have to be a narcissistic douchesicle to drive an Escalade, but it helps.
22 hours ago · Like

MJ what really made me grin was the guy behind me – almost identical car as mine (for the record Subaru Impreza with Outback Sport options became the famed WRX), few years newer, and I think he kind of punched it in the mud at one particular spot

12/7/212 ok, that’s ten kinds of awesome. I look in the rear view while stopped at a light on my way to work? And who is grinning and waving? The “other Subaru” who helped me douse the white Escalade during the storm couplle days ago. Dude, when the zombies come, you’re on the team.
Like ·
3 and and 7 others like this.

TP- Remind me to stay away from you if I ever get a nice car! lol
11 hours ago · Unlike · 1

MJ Actually, my car is pretty nice, it’s just practical and didn’t cost 60K – and its paid for”

You don’t have to think about this one.


The thinking Viking loves a good twist.  Usually a plot twist, sometimes though, it’s a knife.  Almost always a metaphorical knife.

I am going to give you a “knife”.  It might even be good enough to bring to a gun fight.

Ever play the game where everyone (needs to be a good number)  stands in a circle and places their hands on the shoulders of the person to their right, and then everyone just kind of … sits down, and so long as everyone times it OK, everyone winds up sitting on someone else’s knees, in turn supported by the person behind them.  It’s actually pretty cool.

Now, I am going to gloss over most details, going for the 30,000 foot view here (how many of you cringed when I used that term? you know where I have been)….and I am certain that since  it is only in the last two hours I learned about this idea that complications of many sorts will arise.  But…

Banks sell “debt” – credit and loans etc that are in default/foreclosed “high risk” and other complicated transaction etc at rates some where near 5 cents on the dollar.  So, If I had $10,000, I could buy up $200,000 in “debt” that people owed to some sort of financial institution.  Read that again.  My ten grand buys two hundred grand of debt at that rate.  Normally, I would buy this so I could then hound the debtor into paying ME instead of the bank, and even after my costs, still get a pretty bad ass return – remember “math”? -5 cents on the dollar is a twenty to one return if I collect 100%.  Granted, there are costs – paying call centers to harass you, mailing letter, legal fees, etc, but still. Twenty freaking to one return is worth it in the long run.  Banks do this shit all the time.

I am not a bank.  I’m  a person.  Let’s say I buy a $200,00 portfolio for $10,000 (5 cent per dollar, right?) – but I say, fuck this, I had no intention of collecting.  And I tear up the paperwork – let it expire past the statute of limitations for corporate collections. .. provided that the people who would have owed ME that $2000,000  – use their money the same way – amplified 20 to one by buying someone else’s debt instead of paying off theirs.  Between the say, twenty of them, I bet they could scrape up enough to buy a bunch of other people’s debt….again, remember, buying debt is pennies on the dollar. Paying off your own debt is dollar for dollar.  Time for Math.  Ok, Done.

And here’s the kicker – These guys are ALREADY doing this at a scale big enough to make a a difference.  I have some of my model in this hastily written post…. hmm  off a bit – but hey, get teh details from them now that you read this far – go here “Rolling Jubilee”

Metaphorically, in the “standing on the knees of the guy behind you game ” I am the guy – with a fucking CHAIR who doesn’t need someone standing behind me with knees to sit down upon.  There are a lot of chairs out there.

Think about how many people we could get some relief for this way.  It could keep rolling for a long, long ways…

Please give feedback and talk to me – there have to be some serious problem economically somewhere here, right?

Seriously. Think about it.


The Thinking Viking was mildly surprised to hear that Colorado and Washington legalized recreational marijuana.   Really?  In the United freaking States of D.A.R.E.  America? Damn, times have changed. Thank the gods.  It’s insane how many people we have in jail who did nothing more than get involved with the black market of weed.  I won’t go into numbers – just google it.  I am just surprised that the long-term tactics and pushes toward legalization have actually worked in the face of the fact that so many in this country have been life-long  “Drug Warriors” of one kind or another. The light of reason is shining through the lies.

I mean, I have known most of my adult life that what the federal government said about weed was simply not true, and that people who smoke it, by and large, were pretty normal.  I had seen “Reefer Madness” – hilarious, but also unsettling.  A lot of people believed that.  Some of you reading this may be under the influence of the same ideas about weed – that it makes you crazy, or more the more modern stereotype would be the lazy, indolent stoner living in his parent’s basement.   I’ll tell you this – more than likely some of the people you know or work with everyday also smoke weed, legally or not.  And they are fine.  Successful, smart, kind, healthy people. Caveat – I am NOT saying we should all light up, or that the lazy stoned basement dweller does not exist – they do, and we should not all start getting high on the Chronic.  But using that as your model for a pot smoker, and justifying prohibition because of it  would be like using your alcoholic uncle who lives off disability from a “back injury” as your model for people who have a couple of beers after work and banning booze.  It’s just not like that.  And, just like with booze, there are certainly people out there who do no not tolerate  the ganja very well, just as there are those who do not tolerate alcohol.  Pretty similar in that regard, (except that ODing on booze / alcoholism can  – kill you – oh, that again -)and I think that’s what voters in CO and WA decided.  Weed aint for everyone, but it really aint that bad.

But the federal government says it is a  “class one narcotic“?  Do they even know what the term “narcotic” means?  The DEA has been pulling the wool over the collective eyes of the nation by using this term for weed.

This is what a “narcotic” really is:

“nar·cot·ic (när-ktk)


A drug derived from opium or opiumlike compounds, with potent analgesic effects associated with significant alteration of mood and behavior, and with the potential for dependence and tolerance following repeated administration.”
This is why heroin and opium are illegal, and morphine and codeine et al are carefully restriction by prescription.  They are actually damn careful about these drugs because…   In addition to the potential for dependence and tolerance (with corresponding increased dosages) – over dosing on actual narcotics can fucking kill you. They target specific receptors in our nervous system, and we are ill prepared to handle it in large doses. Chris, Liz, you are missed.  I had no idea or I would have tried to help.  Fun fact – technically, cocaine isn’t a “narcotic” either.  But it is potentially fatal and definitely addictive, so the distinction is not so important.  (For my thoughts on legal drugs and death, please see  Stop the Insanity of a Pill for Every Ill – it will alarm you and has nice references and data and stuff)
There  has never been a single case of someone fatally overdosing from weed or it’s active ingredient, THC.  It’s just not toxic.  You’d be more likely to suffocate from the smoke.  And there is pretty much no withdrawal, other than the fact that an activity you enjoyed is no longer happening, and those who claim it is addictive are confusing “habit-forming” with addictive.  Enjoyable activities are repeated because…. they’re fun. It’s not addiction.  Caveat – anyone can develop unhealthy  psychological affections for things that affect your mind, and I will again repeat that I am not one of those preaching that “if everyone smoked some weed we would have world peace” – eh, not so much.  Pot is actually a mild hallucinogen and some people, well, react poorly to it.  So… just like with booze, some people should stay away.  But jailing pot dealers?  People just enjoying a harmless plant, in many ways you could compare it to coffee or tobacco….hmmm
Ah, yes, that one. Tobacco.  Legal in all 50 states.  Poisonous, addictive.  Taxed like hell most places, and some good revenue comes in from …addicts.  Hows it feel getting tax dollars for a harmful  product that people have great difficulty quitting?   What if there was a $1.50 tax per 16 ounce  of…. coffee?  Another basically harmless plant – but also addictive, just ask any serious coffee drinker who tries to quit. (Trust me here, it sucks, it was only being hospitalized and bedridden that I kicked it, and I’ve long since relapsed).
So lets recap.  Weed is mis-categorized as a narcotic, and is therefore illegal at the federal level. Most people have now realized, or are coming to realize, that weed is not the dangerous drug it has been portrayed as, and that the War on Drugs,  in this and in ost if not all regards was misguided, has failed, and has had negative impacts on our society that are hard to measure.  Many states have recognized the medicinal benefits, and in some cases the “prescription” for medical weed is essentially a tax that pretty much anyone can buy (Yes, I live in California) – while it’s not “legal” here  in CA as it is now in Colorado and Washington , Governor Schwarzenegger signed a law a little while back making possession the equivalent of a minor traffic ticket.  A REPUBLICAN Governor, mind you.
I am not even going to touch on the actually true conspiracies around the criminalization of pot in the first place.
Anyhow,  you might have noticed I don’t cite sources – don’t need to.  I aced neurobiology and physiology and did pretty well in biopsychology.  And I’m transplanted from Colorado….  :)  Just sayin.
Think about it.
(Yes, I am aware of the irony of using the initials “MJ” on a post about weed. I find it amusing.)

The Thinking Viking wrote this immediately after Hurricane Sandy.  I couldn’t finish – it was too upsetting.  Things have calmed own, so Here ya go..

The Thinking Viking is not  a reality TV star.  Buuut ….I really have spent time on the Jersey Shore. I have also deliberately avoided viewing the show of the same name as my title today because I didn’t want to tarnish the memories.

“Briefly: I was 4-6 years old, my parents were still together, my grandfather on dad’s side was still alive, and we would rent this cottage on a little inlet in the barrier island town of Seaside Heights. We’d catch crab off the small dock in back.  One of those crabs caught ME, once.  We ate him.  And the beach days of sun and sand castles, sterotypical BS right out a movie, I kid you not.  And finally – the Boardwalk.  I was too small for the serious rides, but I recall the little kid ones well.  My favorite had a bunch of fiberglass metal flak “cars” – old cards, 1950s detroit iron, and you could ride in them, spin the wheel, pretend to be big.  Good times for a five-year old, I even had a favorite car – the green “Thunderbird” – because my favorite color was green.  Times change, if you judge by my wardrobe now, I guess that color is  But I digress.”

That was all I could get to.

Anyhow, one of my few memories in any detail is of that ride and those stupid fiberglass cars.

I just saw MY car – or one exactly matching my memory – washed up on a beach half buried in sand 10 freaking miles from Seaside Heights.

I just sat there, stunned. I couldn’t even turn off the TV.

Many of those storm victims are still suffering.

Think about it.


The Thinking Viking loves a good discussion and debate.  Valid, cogent  arguments in favor for  or against a position, good stuff.  But there is an idea out there that whenever there is a dissenting voice, that there is a rational, reasonable discussion occurring.  That two opposing views are comparing valid, rational arguments. This is crap.  it is not always true that the other side has any grounds for even speaking.  Oddly, it reminds me of how people in a certain Colorado town were convinced that anything made by Ford sucked, Chevy ruled, and they argued for ever with the Ford and Mopar (need I mention AMC?) crowd, yet they all had tons of stats and figures to compare. Shhhh-  Fact is, all those old muscle cars are about equal once you push them to their design limits.

But there are facts to debate there.  Compression ratios, limited slip differentials, intake and exhaust mods, manual vs automatic, ignition advance, fuel/air mixtures, hell, even spark plug gaps. The things I am going to poke at don’t have sides to compare like torque curves or 1/4 mile times.

I’m gonna talk about the creation of the life on this planet and the creation of the United States.  Two things God had nothing to do with. There are a lot of voices on both “sides” here, some screaming bloody murder.

Uh oh, that got some people mad.

I am going to use all caps for the next two sentences, so Homer Simpson will understand.


Read that again, and I invite you to challenge me. Take your best shot.

Media of all sources will have you think that there is some confusion or true debate on these issues.

Nope. In two paragraphs I will be done.

While the details of abiogenesis and the mechanisms behind the creation of the first self replicating molecule are still not nailed down, the only discussions going on among scientists about evolution are about the details of how it occurs. Period. The counter argument has no evidence. I refuse to even put the counter into words here.

The founding fathers were living in times were your religious beliefs could get you killed. Dead.  Or at least excommunicated, which was essentially banishment from house and home and family and life.  They knew the dangers that would creep in if religion began to dictate law.  To call them “Christian” is a shellacking of the truth – with notable exceptions, that I’m not taking the time now to research, – many were “Deist” – believed in God, but not that this God would intervene in human affairs or who took any active role.  Plus, you have to understand that Everyone – and I mean EVERYONE – in that time was, from birth, indoctrinated with a church, and to not be part of this would be self…banishment.  No one in those times would publicly say there is no God, and most would invoke his name to lend authority to their ideas. So, sure, they were “religious men” – all men were. So much for the “Christian Nation”.

Rant done.

Think about it.

The Thinking Viking has been …thinking.  I know, I know, there’s always trouble when this happens, but I just can’t stop myself. I was going to weave this into my other post “Kill Your Television” – but decided that my anger at television was distinct from my thoughts on manipulation via sex, lies, and video clips.  I chose the title deliberately (It pins my age if you remember the movie I refer to) – pretty much everyone now understands that  using sex to distract while you lie is effective, and that manipulating video can make almost anything appear to be true – tie this with some sexy propaganda, perhaps a viral meme, and bingo – new “truth”. I think most also know that these are just a few of the tools used to influence people.   These are the things you still get when you kill your TV.  The top youtube videos, email from internet groups,shared facebook postings, movies from Netflix,  all the websites with free content, don’t be fooled into thinking these sources are not also affecting and manipulating you.

….and damn are there a lot of websites and chatrooms, facebook groups, twitter tweeters.. (yeah, I have a twitter and facebook account. ) and …um… blogs….oh gods, what can I say. You gotta be careful – just as the Big Media is controlled by a handful of companies, the reverse is true on-line.  There is no real oversight, no censors, no one authority dictating content. just the web itself evolving. Which is fucking awesome, and also terrifying.  Many people will trust these “authorities” precisely because they are not “Mass Media” – they feel as though they have found some secret truth that others are too ignorant to understand.  You have all seen it.  It’s behind 90% of all conspiracy theory websites. Yes, that means that I think some of these crackpots might be on to something.  But I digress.

The line is increasingly blurred, with TVs at gas pumps not actually showing television, but rather a corporate “station” designed to look like broadcast TV.  Countless websites invite you to “create an account”” and they notify you when they have new content.. and these notification pop up as text messages on your goddamn phone, instantly. Impressive, but…wow  So in effect, you are choosing what to allow yourself to be brainwashed by.

By odd coincidence, I just received a text message about an event in Oakland that needs…shall we say “volunteers” (free tickets are involved), and it wound its way to my phone from via a free email service…one of perhaps five email addresses I technically have.  Hmm.  Somehow this maze of chosen connections I use  tastes better than Mass Media, but it comes with some dangerous side effects for some.  Such as championing a cause that doesn’t exist, this gave us the fraud that was Kony 2012, or convicting someone of a crime via viral memes online, without legal due process (which is where my only sympathy for George Zimmerman lies). Or convincing yourself that the entire aviation fuel industry in spreading psychological chemicals across the nation.  Or that the world is ending in 2012.

So we have entered a new world of information, for better or worse. I think it’s working.  But it is sometimes as sketchy as a skateboarder on crack sliding down a 100 foot railing into a pit of bear traps..

Think about it.


The Thinking Viking is not a big fan of broadcast television, by and large.  Even with cable TV in my room, the thing is mostly used as a giant monitor for my laptop.  This is a deliberate choice.

I’ve studied psychology, sociology, philosophy, and I …read a lot.  I want you to think about a few things.  First, it is a well-known persuasive technique to simply repeat yourself.  Count how many times certain ads appear, and during which shows.  That is no accident. The content be damned, you see it night after night, and gee, slowly but surely, your opinion sways slightly in favor of Cinnamon Toast Crunch or Coors Light.

There’s an even more subtle thing going on.  Another trick is to restrict what is discussed.  The Newspeak of George Orwell’s famed work  “1984” is the epitome of this – by removing words from the language, you are in effect controlling their thoughts.  The Big Media – broadcast TV and Newspapers/magazines and websites like  MSN and CNN – almost all of them are ultimately owned by only 6 companies, and most simply repeat what ever the Associated Press wire feeds to them.  I was at a local quick-e-mart place, and looked at three different area newspapers.  The front pages on each were identical, article for article, ad for ad, only the name of the paper was changed. So, say something happens that would upset these shadowy giants, say some country banned a business practice that is legal here – you wont see that on the News.  Iceland put its criminal banksters in Jail and basically re-wrote itself. Not on the news.  Say another countries populace is rising up by the thousands and thousands in protests about the same bullshit that almost crippled the US economy – nope, that ain’t on the news either. I marched with people who stretched as far as I could see last fall on November 2, 2011 and shut down the Port of Oakland, CA.  The news said it was 2,000 people.  Ahem, more like 20,000. Or more. You can’t be upset about what you don’t know is happening.  Hear something called garbage enough, and you will find it distasteful. You can’t discuss what you do not know.

You might think I am just talking about the “News”.  Nope – the scripts and subject matter of countless TV dramas and the subject of countless sitcom jokes are also under this sort of pressure and control.  You sit through the show you like, then they hit you with ads, and in fact, they go hand in hand.  the ads are actually much more carefully crafted than many shows – hell, they only have 30 seconds or so to get their message across. Time is money. Do I even need to point out how LOUD ads are? Technically, they are no louder than the loudest part of the shows, but the entire 30 second bit is basically at max volume – another technique to make you accept what you are seeing and hearing.  Its partly why drill sergeants  scream at recruits during boot camp.

So what you get is what they choose to tell you, repeated endlessly and spun by people who have studied the science of manipulation and got all As.

Don’t play the game.  Kill your TV.  This is one of the bad things that you can fix.  There are other ways to find the same content, other ways to get news, other ideas and truths out there that the TV will never tell you.

Think about it.


The Thinking Viking Approves this Message.

(see what I did there?  By “approving” it makes it seem like some outside authority has read this and agreed with me.  But I am just approving my own words. Cool, eh?)

Please see my companion piece “Sex Lies and VideoClips

The Thinking Viking has a brother (and a step brother, but that is for later).  He had flown in from Memphis, TN to Stapleton Intl. Airport in Denver, CO, and I was driving us both back to Boulder to meet mom (I was living with her again since I started school). It had been years since we had all been together.  It’s been a while since this went down, heck, Stapleton Airport doesn’t even exist anymore.  I think it is a parking lot.  DIA is much better. Anyhow…..  We’re cruising through backroads of Colorado in an 89 Honda Civic, catching up.

Then, a rail crossing. A train is already there. And it’s doing the slow for five minutes – stop- backup- business that freight trains do. Fuck.  We chat some more, I bitch that the car has no radio (not broken – original owner didn’t want one).  The train finally moves forward steadily… good 15 or 20 minutes killed.

I drive home in a hurry.  We don’t speak.

We get to the apartment.  The nurse meets us at the door.

“Thank God you made it. She’s waiting for you both.”

We rush to mom’s room, each of us taking one of her hands.

“Mom, I’m here…” I manage to blurt out…

“Matt?  Is Jeff here? ”

“I’m here, too Mom.” my brother replies.

“Thank you..”

Those were last two words she spoke. She squeezed our hands, and died.

Cancer sucks.

She died bankrupt, uninsured, due to her pre-existing condition of “cancer”.

Think about it.



The Thinking Viking is a Facebook person under his real name.  A FB friend under a sortofname recently shared this: (italics mine, of course. FB doesn’t let you italicize – hey, that’s a word…”Italicize” ) – this post may be updated as comments and thoughts come through..

mikethought · 2,129 like this

12 minutes ago ·
I liken gun laws to abortion.
No one likes the fact that people shoot people and no one likes the fact that people use abortion as contraception.
The same way gun laws don’t stop gun violence…pro-life laws won’t stop abortions.

In both cases, I think the answer is the same…we have to give people the choice and hope they do the right thing.

You can’t be in favor of protecting the 2nd Amendment and be pro-life. It’s contradictory…it’s the same game with a different name.

I could not agree more.  He has pre-empted my tirade on this topic so simply, and adroitly, that I cannot really add more to the argument.

Think about it, and tell me what you think.


PS the Facebook link to his original post “should” be


Well, hey kid

You got the right

But the choice to kill

No, Son of Sam

Will let you in to turn against

– Dead Sara “The Weatherman” off their eponymous debut album


The Thinking Viking has been….thinking.  The 14th Amendment states, in part,  “no state shall … deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”. (thanks Wiki)

The Supreme Court, in deciding and later upholding the Citizens United case, has determined that corporations are “people”.

If I break the law and am convicted, I face jail time for a great many crimes. We are pretty good at tossing people in prison.  It is literally what the concept of this kind of punishment is when intended as being a deterrent to crime, for some (google sociopaths) , it is the only thing keeping them in check.  Some otherwise violent people do change when they realize that the next assault charge would mean hard time – I have met them.  Myself, working with the /redacted/ stuff that I have and do work with, dang, I could be a bad guy, data  wise, pretty easy.  But no way I want to wind up in prison for something like that.  Not even close to worth it.  So I live my life knowing that in society, I am under a sort of constant threat – the threat of legal retaliation for my deemed improper behavior.  Well, OK, that’s basically stating that I live in a society with laws. I’m fine with that.

I have written before on a means by which we could “jail” corporations.  I think the 14th amendment gives me some pretty good support. If these corporate “people” have the right to never be imprisoned, then I also demand this right.   If not that, then find a way to jail Goldman Sachs. Can’t do that? Then these things are not people.

Think about it.



Upon further reflection I also demand the right to declare myself dead (for the corporate things this would be “bankruptcy”) and allow  my last will to grant all my assets to a company I create, and then to be allowed to petition for a new social security number under a new, created by myself, name.


The Thinking Viking was once an unemployed student.  Living with mom again at 21, helping her through her last days after the cancer returned again. I had been fired a couple of weeks before, because they needed to fire “someone” –  they could not figure out who was actually stealing from the loading docks, I was the new guy, so I was out.

Mom was sick, and tired, and had decided that after fighting cancer for over ten years, only to find it returned with a vengeance and that she would be facing more surgery, more chemo, and that even then, she could not expect to live more than a year, she decided to live out her end days in dignity.  She would take drugs etc to ease her suffering, but would not fight again. She didn’t have it in her. I understood.

Having me unemployed was not good. We were silently terrified about the situation.

The phone rang. Friend looking for something. Didn’t have it.

Cook lunch for mom.

Phone rings again – oddly same question. Same answer. Can’t help ’em.  Don’t have any myself.

Then my mind kicks in.  Math starts rolling. whirrrrr – click. click. click. PING!.

“Hey mom, can I borrow $100 until this afternoon?”

Mom – “What for?”

“So I  buy an ounce of weed for $100 and sell it for $160.  Pay you back in two hours.”

“OK.  I love supporting cottage industries.”

I paid for tuition at  my community college with the job she helped create with a $100  loan.  She had no income beyond SS disability.  She was a 47%’er.

Thanks Mom, you helped me out a lot.

Fuck you, Mitt Romney.  I know what a job creator looks like.


PS Mom died about a year later, before I got my 2-year degree.  Dad died not much later, but I can’t write about that now.  Missing details.

The Thinking Viking was, again, 16 or 17 at the time.  Mom had been planning on taking me to a midnight Christmas Eve service at the nearby Presbyterian Church.  I wasn’t religious even then, but I went to make her happy, and hell, I’d never been to one of these things,  should be interesting, at least.

You betcha.

This was a medium-biggish church, least a 300 people, walls decorated with wreaths lit by candles in the center of each wreath, there were dozens of them. This is important information.

About half an hour into the service, I’m bored, my gaze is wandering. And it lands on a point of light a bit brighter than the rest. Bigger flame, flickering more.

Some smoke.  One wreath is, well, on fire. What happened next was not deliberate, and in fact until a little bit later I didn’t even realize I had done it.  I smiled silently.

Before you get mad, I had already noticed that some ushers were pointing and talking about this little …problem, so no one was put in danger by my inaction.  They put the fire out and decided that open flames next to tinder dry wreaths made of fine needled resinous plant material was not wise.  House lights came on,  low and dim.

After the service while we were driving home, mom turns to me and says “I thought you were smiling about the service and the hymns.  You weren’t. You were smiling because the church was on fire.  I am never taking you again.”

Miss you mom.  Cancer sucks.


The Thinking Viking gets hungry, just like anyone. Yesterday, while fighting off the first cold I have had in years (ugg, this still sucks – cough cough) my appetite returned and I decided to try out the new Greek restaurant down the street.  I loves me a good gyros.   I drive down there, park, walk in, place my order.  Cashier says it will be 15 minutes, they just got a huge take out order and there were other walk-ins ahead of me.  Eh, fine.  I’ll walk up to Walgreens and get something for this cold.  I tip the guy my spare change, just a bit shy of a dollar.

Five steps outside, and I find a 2012 penny on the sidewalk.  I don’t like the new pennies.  But I digress.  My mind basically concludes that it is very difficult to try to use cash for all transactions and NOT be constantly carrying small amounts of change.  Had about 200 bucks cash on me.  And the super shiny new penny which I planned on letting my shiny-obsessed bird play with.

Then, as I walk into the store, I pass by an old man, sitting on the sidewalk next to the door. He was clearly poor, but clean and neatly dressed, and old, I’d say pushing 70.  Clean shaven.  He very politely ask me if I could spare some change.

I thought about the penny I had just picked up.  That would be  massive dick move to give the guy 1 cent.  I dug into my pocket to see if I had any other change that I hadn’t just tipped the sandwich guy with. Nope, just the penny.  I told the guy I had just given all my change as a tip.

“That’s alright, young man, it’s all good. You have a nice night.” – I waved him silent.

The look on his face when I handed him the five dollar bill was more than worth it.

I said, “You need this more than I do”.

As I left the store a couple of minutes later, he grins and fist-bumps me.

Pay it forward.  As I drove away I saw him walk into the Mr. Taco that I myself had almost eaten at.

Think about it.



The Thinking Viking will, on occasion, enjoy boxing or other martial arts as sport.   Several years ago I met up with and befriended a young guy, lets call him Kevin.  He was maybe 22. He worked at the local convenience store. Nice guy, smart, had a cool girlfriend who worked at a fitness club.

One night, he mentions he’s starting college, and is having trouble with his biology homework. “Ding” – I can help with that. I tutor him on Bio 101, explaining rather than just lecturing. He gets it. Stops asking for help, thanks me.

Couple months later, He invites me to his birthday party, a pay per view boxing match – Maywether and .. dammit brain… that dang feisty older undefeated maybe Cuban guy ? – anyhow, I am enough of a fan to know about the fight, and he’s a friend, so – no brainer. I accept.

I show up, brought a couple of big nice beers with me, and knock.  There’s Cindy, the cool girlfriend I mentioned before. I enter, handing Kevin one of the beers with a “Happy Birthday!”. I open his beer, shake his hand and..

And then I realize … Kevin is an under 25 black male in the San Francisco East Bay. Works at a convenience store. These are his friends.

There is one seat left, I sit, take a drink.

Kevin speaks..”It’s cool, guys. He’s O.G.” – a roomful of shrugs  and barely perceived nods..Me and Cindy were the only two Caucasians there. And what did they criticize?  The Beer. Only point of objection.

And it IS cool. Good Times.

Think about it.



PS this would be about 6 yrs ago? 2012 now

The Thinking Viking was maybe 16 or 17 at the time.  I was sitting there, in my bedroom, reading, and I recall I had just cleaned my room – a rare thing for me…still.  On the wall behind my bed I had also hung a STOP sign that I now cannot recall how I came to have.  It had been leaning against the wall for months, and I really didn’t think much about it.  I didn’t take it, but somehow, this bit of contraband signage wound up at my place. I vaguely recall a poker game?  So – rare clean room, and a good book, little redecorating.  Read, read, read….

So there I was, when Mom knocks on the door.  I open up, ready for her to be surprised that I actually had cleaned my room.


I didn’t realize that, until I hung the sign on the wall, it was pretty much hidden from the doorway.  Mom hadn’t seen  my piece of road system infrastructure yet. But to me it was no longer novel.

She looked at me, raised an eyebrow.

Dramatic pause.

“If you are trying to get any action with the girls, you really should have stolen a “YIELD” sign.”

And she left. I facepalmed.  She was right.

Think about it, and good night.


PS -the STOP sign didn’t actually make the girls stop. OK so there were only a couple while I lived with Mom, on and off.  OK, four.  I wasn’t promiscuous but I wasn’t a saint either  :)  Miss you Mom.  Cancer sucks.

The thinking Viking has studied US History.  Mind you, I’m not a “historian”, but I did willingly take 10 credits of US  history as electives, and I found it fascinating.  And I read. Sometimes, quite a lot.  I’m also blood-related to Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman.

So today, I’m going to have a little chat about how our country came to be, why, and what happened after it almost was almost torn apart – just little bits, anyone who follows me knows that I don’t go off for pages and pages when I get down to brass …tax. (reminds me of an old bug Bunny cartoon…) Sorry, couldn’t resist.

Lets get started. We revolted against Great Britain because of the stranglehold they had on our economy and legal status. Bizzare laws made Americans have to ship materials to Britain to be made into goods, then buy these same goods at very high prices from British companies, and of course the profits etc didn’t…trickle down to them. Hmm. Taxes – without being able to participate in deciding the laws, riles many, and this gave rise to the famed Boston Tea Party. Not to be confused as the Tea Party is today.  See what I did there?  Secret meetings, revolutionary publications, a couple riots (google  the “Boston Massacre”), foreign solidarity, a little bit of treason, some guns, more guns..bigger guns…….some..well, OK a LOT of bullets, bunch of dead people, and we win our independence. (Thanks France! I mean that. We would still be a colony if you folks hadn’t helped. Don’t forget that, Americans. The French are NOT pansies. Ask anyone who Napoleon defeated.)

So we begin the war by declaring that everyone has the right to pursue life, liberty and happiness, and that yada yada some times it is needed to get violent and fix a broken government. And it worked, well, well enough to form the United States.  So far, so good.

Then, very quickly, they realized they had forgotten to include some details, details about human rights that were crucial to their anger towards the Crown.

Such as the right to free speech and the redress of grievances, and the right to peacefully assemble.  These three were violently suppressed by the British.  People died trying to get their concerns addressed in the times prior and during the war (see “Boston Massacre” that I mentioned above) , groups larger than 3 were forbidden, printed word was censored, all while their complaints about the situation fell on deaf ears. People suppressing protesters today are forgetting this. It is part of our very fabric as a nation for those who are upset with the status quo to state so, and to  seek a redress of grievances  – loudly and publicly, and repeatedly, day after day after day if they wish. So long as they are peaceful, as the amendment stipulates, it is very un-American to stifle and suppress words from others/protesters that you do not agree with, so long as certain lines are not crossed.  Some lines have been crossed, and people are getting hurt. Line one? Lets just say “pepper spraying cop meme” and “Scott Olsen” – peaceful protests that were made violent by those very people hired to protect the people.  (I’ve met Mr. Olsen a couple times now, nice guy) The other line – non-peaceful assemblies.  If you gather in a group of a couple + hundred, with the main slogan being “Fuck the Police!” (aka an “FTP March”) – then of course they are going to take it wrong.  Smashing windows and spray painting slogans on businesses or cars may make you feel powerful, but that crosses the line. Those are crimes, pretty much anywhere. Wrong message, wrong tactic.

On the other hand, the Founding Fathers had no way to anticipate the Internet,  TV, radio, <much later DOH! “cell phones smarter than the space shuttle”> where one persons speech can be heard and read by millions and millions. Hell, I am watching the freaking Olympics in LONDON right now.  (DAMN!!  Nice goal, Team USA women’s soccer!!!) In those days, someone who was spewing BS would literally get shouted down by those nearby who realized that the person was a rambling lunatic – there was no way said lunatic could reach the entire nation with dangerously disturbed ideas. Best you could do back then was an un-amplified bull horn or maybe get published in some small news rag.  Of course, even in those times they realized that this made the wealthy better able to have their voices heard, hence some quotes you may have seen about corporate power that our founding fathers made. They had no idea. Now, a few  mouse clicks can expose someone’s private life, one man with an opinion that most find repugnant can find many, many more like-minded people.  So, tricky.  Maybe I’ll have some answers after this bit and will add here, maybe not.  <later> Oh, yeah, they could also never have  anticipated that corporations would one day be “people” who can spend as much as they like pursuing “free speech” and saying fucking anything they want that will make people do what they want them to do, be it advertising for drugs no one needs, useless or even dangerous products or ….trying to buy a presidential election. And hiding behind the Fourth amendment to avoid disclosing who the real humans involved actually are. It is bat-shit insane that we allow this.

So, moving on. Guns. Not many can discuss this rationally. On the one hand, you have the pro-gun ownership people, who cite the 2nd amendment. Well, I can’t argue much on the big issue. without private gun ownership the Revolution would never have survived, and we would have remained under tyranny for – how long? Also, hunting and self-defence – both were BIG parts of life in new America, with real pirates, real “indians” who really did kill people, and no “911” from your cell phone to summon help. So, “yes guns for the people”, it is constitutional, and if this country ever gets so bad as it was back then, well, so be it.  We are NOT there now, so don’t go off on me.  Also, back then, there were basically two classes of guns – pistols and muskets/rifles (yes, they had true rifles then, dispite what some anti-gun folks say “all they had were smooth bore muskets – not accurate at all”  – this is not true.  The Americans used Kentucky Longriflemen as some of the worlds first snipers) ) and then were the BIG GUNS  such as cannon.  Military rifle were basically the same as hunting rifles.  Maybe add a bayonet.  Nothing anything like an AK-47 or M-16/AR-15. I would wager that a couple hundred modern soldiers -given enough ammunition and their modern gear – could have defeated the entire British army.  And may the gods help the nation who tries to invade US soil.  Remember the movie  “Red Dawn”, anyone?  Cold War straight up propaganda, but the point about how well armed Americans are is true.

The Founding Fathers had no idea that two hundred years later everyday people could buy weapons designed for waging war. For common firearms, there simply was not much difference, and who has a use for a cannon when hunting? We already have laws against fully automatic machine guns, thanks to the days of prohibition and the Thompson sub-machine-gun (great gun! fun to shoot!) among others.  Before the gun-nuts can go off, I own a gun, in times past have owned several.  I only have the one now, but it would make Dirty Harry proud.  I have, maybe 9 rounds for it, leftover from my last trip to the shooting range, admittedly years and years ago. I figure if I can’t stop an assailant with 6 rounds of .44 fire, then I am going to need help. If I really want to go out and shoot something bad-ass, I know a cop or two who runs a yearly marksmanship event, where they let you play with some bigger stuff. No need for an AR-15 with a hundred round magazine. Ever. If there’s a revolution, I’m sure some enterprising person can scare up better weapons. They have already been made. Rifles and handguns.  Single shot, semi-auto, revolver, yada yada yada.  In closets and garages and warehouses and under pillows and beds all over the North American continent. Yes ,-  Canada too.. This is why it is pointless and wrong to ban guns entirely – the pro-gun statement about only criminals having guns if guns are illegal is….true. There is a HUGE black market for guns, and until our society doesn’t drive demand, it will not go away any time soon.  Think about putting toothpaste back in the tube.  you might WANT it there, but it aint gonna happen.

I’m gonna skip the third amendment – not much of an issue these days.

The Fourth is a big one for me. “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” – THIS IS WHY ANONYMOUS AND MANY OTHERS fight against internet laws that would allow massive amounts of personal data to be collected and analyzed by government agencies this is, for the vast majority of people, a completely unreasonable search. It is the basis for what most people assume is a human right – the right to privacy, to have our personal lives public only so far as we wish.  They had no idea, none, that things like bank balances, phone numbers, memberships in private clubs, places we have visited, things we have bought, think we simply “like” are all possibly being searched, without cause or warrant.  They also had no idea that people thousands of miles from one anyone would be able to communicate dangerous information to almost anyone, or that people thousands of miles apart could form the tightest friendships of their lives without ever meeting some of their friends, but still knowing what they all look like, recognize their voices, and trust them with secrets. We have to be very careful here. Also unknown? Drug testing.  Drug testing welfare recipients is one of the worst violations of the Fourth Amendment I can imagine.  Have to prove you are not guilt – guilty before proven innocent.  Doesn’t sound so good now, does it?

The next, the Fifth, is pretty well understood until you read “when in actual service in time of War or public danger” – oops.  They never anticipated 9/11 and the now-never ending war on terror that kind of make “all the time, everywhere” a  possible cause to suspend this right. Mind you, I don’t think this would actually happen, but…well, I am writing this piece for a reason……what will they be writing about in two hundred years about us?

Skipping the next couple, #8, you have some troubles these days. “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.” – we live in a country where we have more people in prison per capita than any other nation on earth. The majority are for non-violent offenses.  The War on Some Drugs has failed. We all know it, anyone who doesn’t see the wrongness here just isn’t being honest. Mind you, I’m a NOT advocating legalizing all street drugs.  If I ever meet the meth dealer who got my friend hooked after she was clean for a year, I’m gonna knock him into tomorrow. But I digress. Bradley Manning is on trial for treason for telling the truth. There are states that are trying to pas laws that could make women who miscarry babies  into felons if they can’t prove it was a natural event.

Nine and Ten aren’t considered much –
Ninth Amendment – Protection of rights not specifically enumerated in the Constitution.

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Tenth Amendment – Powers of States and people.

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Read these two a couple times.  They both end with “the people”.  Think about that.

Jumping ahead to the 13th and 14th amendment – ending slavery and establishing that people born here were citizens. I’m not actually going into the details of the causes of US Civil War.  The 13th is a no-brainer. No one would publicly claim to want to return to the days of slavery. but the next the 14th another double edged sword whose other edge wasn’t anticipated.  The fourteenth was INTENDED to make sure the children of slaves were citizens.  They hadn’t counted on our current trouble, with non-citizens essentially invading and having their kids become citizens.  Tricky. And at the time, something no one would really have considered even a potential problem. We can’t just kick them all out – that would be both impossible and incredibly cruel. Against our traditions. The statue of Liberty would weep if she knew what some were trying to do to immigrants. So we try compromises, I hope they work out.

Damn, been writing for almost two hours.

I gotta run and pick someone up from night classes.

Anyhow, just think about it.


The Thinking Viking recently posted about seeing some chickens by the roadside, and postulated a bit about why they had not crossed the road.

Then I thought about it some more.  I do that sometimes. Can’t help it.

What if said chickens had ALREADY crossed the road? Can it be that the age old question is meaningless unless you have more data?  Such as observing the chickens crossing as they commit the famed deed? I did theorize the issue was more one of motivation, that we shouldn’t ask WHY the chicken crossed the road, but rather why the chicken wanted to.

Either way, those chickens have stayed put.

Ug, It’s been a long day. I only get these thoughts when I’m tired and brain-strained.

The road is dangerous as fuck. Plenty of “superior” humans get killed crossing the road every day. Why in the hell would a chicken try this?

The answer?  It’s pretty obvious. To get to a better life. Something desirable was there, so they went for it. Some didn’t make it. Some didn’t find what they thought they had seen. Some just got there, just right then crossed, and are testing the waters, so to speak. (I don’t think chickens swim, but meh) . Some hit paydirt. (And they can fly. We tend to forget that – these are free range chickens, and while they don’t fly so great, they CAN fly. Much safer to fly over the road than to walk across it.  But I digress.)

Last Chicken/Road post I concluded that it might be good if more people were like the chicken who did not cross the road – content with what they had.

Today, I think I am the chicken who just now crossed the road. Maybe someday I’ll share about my newish  job. I am honestly happy to have the opportunity.

Anyhow, by all means, consider crossing the road.  One of my favorite poems (yes, The Thinking Viking likes poetry. Some.) is The Road Less Traveled – Robert Frost. Google it, not gonna bother with a link.  Cross the road, take the side street,  go one more exit before pulling over for fuel. Turn off the mental GPS and wing it.  I just last night ran a routine 2+ miles on a leg doctors told me would maybe be capable of a “little jogging”. I ran a 10K last fall, among the regular daily-runner type finishers.  I crossed that broken leg road a while back, and I’ll keep crossing roads untill I die.

Since I am still awake, gonna post this tagless and get back to y’all later.

Think about it, though, in the meantime?


The Thinking Viking just saw some chickens.  At the side of the road. So, of course, I thought about why they did not appear to have any interest in crossing the road. Apparently we are supposed to believe that, in the presence of a road, any normal chicken will cross it.  Because it’s a road, that’s why.

Not the case. I think we need to ask a different question.

I think it’s a question of motivation. We should ask “Why did the chicken WANT to cross the road?”

These chickens clearly had poor management, some would say.  I disagree. I think they were perfectly happy right where they were. Happy with what they had.

More people should be that way. Happy with what they have.

Think about it.



The Thinking Viking “sort of” met Paul Newman once. Not really, but let me explain.  I was on my way to a Genetics lab for school at the good old University of Colorado, Boulder. I was on my only vehicle, my beloved 1978 Kawasaki KZ1000 Z1-R.  When new, it was the fastest production motorcycle on the planet. I called her “Goose” after Max’s freind in Mad Max who rode a nearly identical bike in the movie.  Thing was beauty.  Modernized, electronic, mildly advanced  ignition, rejetted cards, bad ass air intake, custom windshield…  prolly about 125 horsepower.  Handled like a water buffalo, but she was pretty quick.  Figure 9.5-10 sec quarter mile.

Anyhow, I was still pretty punk at the time, I was in my bad ass leather – with spikes, mind you, my own semi-mind-trip-with-chaos art on the back.  I pull up next to a nice old red Ferrari on my right.  Late fifties. It just gets better the closer I get.  Bystanders are staring. This thing is NICE – museum nice.  Million dollar nice. I am impressed – I love cars, the crazier and more bad ass the better.

So I pull up to the stop line and look over to check it out at rest.  I am jealous.  Then I look at the driver.

He seems familiar.  Hmmm.  Brain starts clicking.  Whirrrr. Click. Click.  Then, “ping”.  I get a hit.

NASCAR Hat.  Aviator shades, large and dark.  NASCAR Pit Crew jacket.  Older white dude who looks familiar.  Yes, I am actually a NASCAR fan- prefer Formula – 1, but meh, fast cars. Cool.

I know who this guys is.  That’s fucking Paul Newman.  He owns a NASCAR car  employs a Pit Crew. I know he owns old sports cars.  I cock my head and rise my helmet’s visor, an eyebrow raised, looking right at him. Sunglasses. Over-sized, I’d say, like celebrities wear when they are going under cover.

He nods, and smiles. A hand is briefly raised from the wheel in a subtle wave.  It is returned by my hand raise from the bars briefly.  I grin. The light turns green.

I left that damn Ferrari in the dust.

It’s a simple matter of weight ratios.

Think about it.


PS I sold that bike many years later for four times what i paid for it, to a young Japanese man named “Testuo”

The Thinking Viking loves old machines. Here’s a selection from a annual car show near my home in California.
Read the rest of this entry »

The Thinking Viking loves animals. I cannot recall a time as an adult when I haven’t had a pet of some sort, even if it was just say, a fish tank. Right now, I have my Dwarf Australian Parrot, Cray Z. Bird, to keep me company.  We chat and he loves to play “fetch” with spare change, a game we call “Show me the money”- you can watch us here:  (play in full screen mode – he moves quick and in small windows it is hard to see the money) .

But, I digress. New friends.  At the old place, there was the cat upstairs, the tree frog, the snails, and of course, the turkeys.    Here’s a pic and a blog for it.  They were my “friends” and it was cool to watch the baby turkeys grow up. So, now, I’m not there…I’m here and this weekend I met two new friends.  Mr. Squirrel and Hummingbird.  Hummingbird showed up right as we were done cleaning the yard – mentioned before, it needed help, brush cutting, trash removal/recycled yada yada – well Hummingbird shows up and zooms around, then checks out us humans.  Hovering right in front of me I swear he looked me in the eye, for a good twenty seconds or so.  Days in hummingbird time.  Same deal with my human friend – checked her out carefully.  Then ZOOM off and about his business. Interesting. If I was the paranoid type I say it was actually a government spy-bird-drone.

Mr. Squirrel showed up as night was approaching.  Perched on a limb, same deal as the bird – staring at us.  I take some picture – it is a very handsome squirrel, I dare say.  Sleek and well fed. Bushy tailed.  Dammit, I have a picture, but this blasted laptop isn’t recognizing the memory card. Alright, I’ll add that later.  Mr. Squirrel then proceeds to start chatting , I chat back, we go on like this for half an hour at least.  He was still up there when I went in for dinner.

And I just realized I neglected to mention that the Dad and son who I moved in with – also are now friends.  Things are looking good.

I usually sign off with a “think about it”, but there’s not much to think about this time.

Type at you later.


There there I am, at work, minding my business, when the cell rings. A local, unknown number on the ID. It’s the “donate your furniture” people.  “There’s nothing on the porch” they say. Inquiring about my donations’s pick-up, which was set for today. Appears  that the couch and table I left for them was carried off in the time since I last stayed at my old place. I suppose I still “donated it” – just not to the people I expected.  Rather bold to walk off with furniture that big, but it was pretty clear the place was empty.

But it was actually nice to get that call – everything I left there had bad mojo going for it. Stuff I was holding onto just “because it’s mine” and not because I actually got much use or pleasure from the things. That’s several hundred poounds of crap I’ll never have to move again. And one email address. Meh, I have others.

And so this weekend, my first BBQ of the season, in the new place’s back yard, which I and a friend cleared on Saturday. “Cleared” as in dealt with several huge empty cardboard boxes ( contained car body parts), a lawn that had not been raked in years, a dozen or so good sized saplings that had taken over one corner…still haven’t gotten to mowing it. Getting the mower back there will be tricky – side yard is storage of I-don’t-know-what. Anyhow, it’s weird – even though I am sharing a house, it actually feels more private – no foot traffic in back, last place had a sidewalk two feet from my gate.  Can’t complain. This place has an 8′ foot fence ’round the back yard (no fron yard to speak of, one of “those” places).

Time to make the address change official with those institutions who need to be able to reach you with paper mail.  A much smaller number than in years past.

Ahh hell. i need to do laundry. No bloody clue where the detergent is.  And all this written with a bird perched on my shoulder.

Think about that.


The Thinking Viking is again transplanted. All setup – well almost – at the new place – a room in a new house a maybe 5 miles east of my previous abode. Just made sense to move – I was renting more space than I needed because, like most people, I find moving a massive pain in the ass.  But this time was, well, more of a hassle than previously. Last move I was moving in at the same time as the other guy – we helped each out, had similar schedules, we were already friends and roommates at the House of the Wonder Twins – the twins whose name I dare not speak.  Twin sisters and not well in the head, either of them. It was the four of us in the house, and my freind I and I both bailed out to together – with reasons I can’t discuss, because the restraining order for them to saty the hell away from me is still in effect. That full story in a few years.

So here I am, all moved, but I had to do almost all of the work myself…and at the same time starting a new job.  oof.Four times now heavy things have bashed me – wait, five – the left hand is now bleeding. Frak, I can’t even remember what did that. Add one spider bite, a bird-biten ear – he was being playful but bit too hard. Damn parrot. And a torn intercostal on the right that hurts mainly when I yawn or hiccup or cough.  :yawn: “OW!”. but, ya know? I think I’m going to like having some company again.  Rooming with a couple guys, – I’ll call him The Dad. The Dad and his just-graduated high school son. The Dad is quiet, friendly, helpful, smart and he loves his son.  Son’s an 18 YO drummer and music student named after  a Russian chess grandmaster. Just taught the kid how simple it is to reset a wifi router and get a new passkey if the thing has no password protection set.  Jeez, people, you would think that all the paranoia about internet security would make people think a little more – :counts: – there are something like 23 wifi hotspots in range and I just picked a random one that had a default name, made an educated guess about a possibly 12 digit number and..tada.  I was good and didn’t mess with it and i didn’t actually tell him HOW. I’m wiser than that with an 18-year-old dude. Gotta make sure he’s cool before I start teaching tricks, nothing you can’t learn by setting up a few dozen wifi systems over the years.

I digress. I think I’m going to like it here. I’ll be able to use the backyard for grilling – that’s been almost three years now. Its like, half my previous rent,even with paying for a storage unit. And I think I was going slowly hermit while living alone. I really just didn’t see the clutter and disorder that entropy had been wreaking on my domicile. So now, my living room home theatre is just a shiney flat poor substitute for a mirror, but soon it will be wired and ready, but no worries, I’m on the web as much or more than watching the tv – frankly, I often have it on a channel I like with the sound down, in case something cool comes on – but between netflix, news websites and and and  snopes and – oh wow, i haven’t read “Pearls Before Swine” in weeks….I really don’t care for television lately. It’s full of bullshit. Vapid, repetitive and so much is thinly veiled propaganda that most people don’t even think about what they are being brain-fed that it makes me seethe – but tonight – the Television is cold, unused, and I choose what I put in my brain.

So it seems my mind is untwisting from this. Some ibuprofen, couple few beers – there goes the Dad off to work night shift – and write what I think is the next to last installment of Moving Day. may later I’ll add to The Alaska Journals.

I’m going to to try and NOT think about much tonight; I will probably fail.

Think about it.


The Thinking Viking is newly appreciated, and disrespected. I’m powerful, but cautious. I stand silent -speaking only to a select few – on certain issues, because to tell the truth out loud would hurt me – the time is not right. I’m angry, but understanding.  It is like I have a drunken deranged monkey in my front yard who quotes Shakespeare while throwing poo at my neighbors.  I am confused, but at the same time so certain that it could be graven in stone. Those who love me, misunderstand me, those I love, I am baffled by. I have had to ask for help in ways I never expected, and have given aid to those who will never realize how much that aid has cost me. I miss my parents – both dead too young, but I am appreciating the lessons and skills I have learned because they were not here to prop me up. I am rambling, but I have a goal.

I will continue the fight for reason, truth and humanity so long as I draw breath. I will not let the trials of the day grind me down to dirt. Tomorrow will dawn, as it will for as long as the light that glows in the dark recesses of my mind still shines.

That damn monkey is back.  Time to give it a banana and find out who the star of the play is. “Something is rotten in the state of Denmark”.

Think about it.


The Thinking Viking is sick of this shit. It’s time to get rid of some baggage. The table my ex in-laws gave us. Never eaten a single goram meal off it- truth, not once  – I’d give it away if I could, but been too distracted to post a “free stuff” listing on fraking Craigslist.  Stuff that’s sat in my closet unused for the whole time I’ve lived here.   A box of “important papers” that has stuff that is over twelve years old. Do I need my Community College transcripts? Don’t think so.  How do you fold a chainmail shirt?  Oh, there’s my t-shirt from the Colorado Avalanche’s opening day game – that’s a keeper.  But these random pots and pans that I snagged from next-to-the-dumpster and have used maybe twice in two years? Gone.

But my fish tank?  I really set this thing up well – stable ecosystem, happy fish, but ..well.. I have no real emotional attachment, and it’s yet another thing that was part of a failed relationship that ended years ago. Been keeping it  just… because the damn fish are still alive….

Spider bites suck. Must have disturbed quite a few in this process – got a nice bite on the left ankle, nothing serious, but it itches more than a mosquito bite and its red and kinda inflamed.

My fingernails are filthy.  I’m sore and I smell funky.  And my move -out day it going to be the hottest day of the season – joy.

On the plus side, this has made my actually fold all my laundry and sell off half my books – my trashy killer thriller spy and sci-fi rags that I accumulate seemingly without effort. Keeping the goods ones.

Public Storage – first months is $1 – buying me some time to move into a room in a house with a dude and his teenage son, this will save me tons on rent, at least until the new job starts paying me what I am worth – they are realizing now that they got much more than they expected when they brought me on – knew this would happen, and it’s such a cool place that I didn’t mind a lower than desired salary for a while.

OK, mildly buzzed and tired ramblings all done for now,  Gonna watch some of the first season of Star Trek Voyager on Netflix and relax.


Moving Day

Posted: June 8, 2012 in My Whirled, Stories
Tags: , , ,

The Thinking Viking is dirty. Clothes grungy, hands dirty, covered in dust and random stains – couple bruises- from rooting through the nice condo I’ve been living in for the last 2.5 years. One day I will blog about The Wonder Twins that drove me to this place, but i have to make sure the restraining order is still valid against them. (true, and I am exercising my right to remain silent.). Moving is a pain. taking a break to write because I’ve uncovered so many things that were hastily packed and forgotten..  My Diploma from CU- Boulder. A silver ring -a rose – on a simple silver band- my mom made in high school jewelry class. I’m looking at a photo album that is almost 100 years old. A giant Sharpie for the boxes.  An upset bird – Cray Z. Bird – is mad that his usual hiding places for the coins he steals are gone.

much later..

The buzzed on vodka girl next to me just said “I need to take my…..<dramatic pause>my…</dramatic pause> foot off. She then removes her shoe, wrinkles her nose, and says ” I think I’ll keep my …<dramatic pause> um …</dramatic pause>..foot on instead” ..and puts her shoe back on.

and finallly…

Just collected over twelve bucks in change that my damn bird had hidden in my bedroom


This is to all the other good men out there.

That which we love is under attack.  Not the NFL or NHL, not NASCAR, not beer, not hot wings, not motorcycles or dogs. Rock and Roll? Doing fine. So what’s taking fire? Who needs our strength and honor?

Our sluts and prostitutes.  Or – According to Rush Limbaugh all women who use contraception. Rather, our mothers, wives, girlfriends, sisters, and daughters to rational people. If we stand silent while the rabid religious right continues their onslaught of hate and lies and domination we cannot call ourselves “men”.  We are bigger, we are stronger, but we are not “better”.

Remember how we protect the “weaker sex”?  First on the lifeboats, first out of a burning house, we hold the door for them and defer to their compassion and kindness.  How many of us express outrage when we hear stories of a woman beaten by her husband, of  a teen girl gang raped, we say to ourselves, “If  I had been there, I would have stopped that.” or ” I would kick that guy’s ass.”

I,  for one, won’t take it anymore. This man is  standing up and saying “Enough. This ends with me.”  Taking a quote from “They Live” (one of the best ever terrible sci-fi movies, IMHO)  “I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass… and I’m all out of bubblegum. “

You want to go after our sluts and prostitutes?  The women I love? You’re going to have to go through me first.

Think about it.


Please see “I love women. My Mom was one. Not that there’s anything wrong with that”

And “Rush Delivery”

And “The Littlest, Cutest  Terrorists – The Girl Scouts”


 The Thinking Viking loves to cook.  I have some secrets, (Thanks Dad! You were the gourmet) – most of which I will only share in person.  But this one is already “out” and it’s “that time of the year” so….My secret Cranberry Sauce recipe.  It all boils down to one ingredient.

Ok, here’s your basic recipe.  (from nothing special about I just googled -Simply

  • 1 cup (200 g) sugar
  • 1 cup (250 mL) water
  • 4 cups (1 12-oz package) fresh or frozen cranberries
  • Optional Pecans, orange zest, raisins, currants, blueberries, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice. (this is where the secret is)

And you basically just boil the hell out of it until the consistency is right.  Low temperature, un-covered…

So, this works fine.  But I have a secret.

Swap out half the sugar with HONEY and screw this suggestion of optional ingredients and instead add several table spoons of fresh ground ginger.

This makes “good” cranberries sauce “Great”.  IMHO


True story*. Fake names. This is kind of ugly. I forgive you if you don’t read all the way.

Last night, I was just sitting there, minding my own business, chuckling at a Facebook post, my tired butt planted firmly on the couch, when a message came in with a copied-pasted Facebook URL. Intrigued, as it came from a trusted source, I followed it.  Ah. One sided flame war.  Free-thinker friend I’ll call “Bill” was being harassed by someone named “Brad” – because Bill supports gay marriage rights, equal protection rights for LGBT folks,  and doesn’t feel homosexuals should have to hide their nature. Bill provides calm, rational arguments. Bill is straight. Well, me too. But of course Brad feels otherwise about &@% gays. Only fags would say that.  It makes him sick, it’s wrong, God hates gays, And that’s just the start. Gay marriage will never be legal because it offends too many.

I read the whole thread’s last page.  Brad was drunk, actually publicly claimed to be.  The usual hateful bigoted bits came from him – Bill must be gay, gay people are sick, gay people deserve the mistreatment they get because it is their choice and they could somehow stop being gay.  So far, I’m more amused than mad, a little surprised at the persistence and higher than usual amount of profanity, but not shocked. Not provoked to do much but read.

I then calmly point out his fallacy of logic, point out that gay marriage and equal rights for homosexuals are being, and have already been, voted into law in many states and many developed countries.

Wait – now Bill must be an idiot if he believes in evolution, it’s just a  “theory”.  Fish don’t grow legs, fools!

Wrong move, Brad.  I weigh in.

“Just a theory?”  How fucking ignorant are you? You do realize that “sub-atomic theory” FLATTENED HIROSHIMA AND NAGASAKI.  Ask 400,000 dead Japanese how sure we are about “theory”.  Gravity? Yeah, that  is  ” just a theory”, too. (from another post of mine Just a Theory – From Hiroshima to Whitney Houston) (hey – I just had to hand code that hyperlink – what gives? Insert-link did nothing)

Then it gets weird.  Apparently Brad thinks Bill shared Brad’s home address publicly and then makes thinly veiled threats about vandalising Bill’s home or otherwise stalking him. What?  And Brad suggests that his father would shoot other commentors on Bill’s side. Then he just starts tossing insults.  Then he goes after me – apparently my education at  The University of Colorado was worthless and I must have gotten nothing but a diploma out of it.  I check his page.  Community College grad with a certificate in metal machining.  Nothing bad about that, but it is undeniable I am better educated.  Doesn’t mean he is stupid.  He is proving that with his own words.  I grow weary, state as much, and leave the “discussion”.

As part of my on-going Facebook Campaign of  “I’m not gay but I don’t give a fuck if you are” I then shared on my timeline, nothing related to the flame war I just part of, a tragic post about yet another gay teenager who committed suicide after bullying. I ask “How many more homosexual kids are going to die before we finally as a people stop the hate?”

Brad was watching.  He commented on my post that I should be the next to die. Horribly written and mis-spelled, but clear enough. On MY post.  Before I can finish typing my not-kind response, a friend of mine read his comment and jumped in, ripping him as bad as I was about to.  Thanks Lena (also, not her real name), I got your back too. No more comments from Brad on that post.

There’s more. Today I hear this: Brad has found someone at his school with almost the same name as me, ahem – different middle initial and surname spelled as a different northern European tongue.  Brad thinks this guy is ME. Yep. No shit. But he’s posting this poor bastards home address and encouraging vandalism .This other “me” has now been sucked into this insanity.  A simple view of my profile would have tipped this guy off that I live halfway across the country. Fucking god-damned WHAT?

Police are involved. You will hear no more of this from me.

I was on Facebook IM with a friend in the Midwest couple hours earlier.  She can’t walk the streets with her girlfriend out of fear of public outrage and family ostracism.

Any of you reading this far are already on my side.  The right side.  The fair and human side. If you have read this far and are not on the right side, I pity you. You have evil in your soul.


PS – follow my campaign on Facebook at I’m not gay but I don’t give a damn if you are

The The Thinking Viking checks comment pages and twitter feeds.  I also fact check before I post.

“Hillary represents everything that is wrong with our current system of government; the fact that she’s won at the game only serves to define her as someone not quite worthy of the prize.”

“How can anyone feel sorry for her when she sold out on a war contract that took so many peoples lives.”

later, me

she played the game, and was winning, until people realized it was a game. Honestly feel bad for her, timing her rise with the #OWS grassroot fire rising up again..


(removed text)

you really think she is evil? that she would trade lives for dollars?

…for her, I bet it was the death by a thousand cuts, every time she compromised, every Wall Street speech, every time she sold out, a bit of a once good soul went dark- not evil dark, but cold dark.

“Doesn’t make me sympathetic to her campaign, but does break my heart for her as a person…to come to the point where she is only to realize she’s lost herself in the process…that the person she used to be could have won, but she’s changed so much that it’s not possible”


Thinking about this,




Posted: April 4, 2016 in My Whirled