Is MAGA the future..

Today a very EERIE thing happened to me while driving onto the campus of one of my teams I do Game Day choreography with/for.

(This post has nothing to do with this amazing team I love to work with in San Antonio – the Johnson Jaguars.. one of the very best groups of kids I am lucky enough to work with.)

This is my 3rd year coming on campus but this year was different and sort of eye opening.

The school is now completely fenced in around the campus. You can park in the lot just fine – but to enter campus- you have to go through a steel gate. I was perplexed for a bit on figuring how I would make it to the practice room- but luckily – the large main steel gate was open as cleaning crews were getting ready for school to start in two weeks.

I felt all types of ways..

#1 – shocked – amazed – scared – confused .. on why a school would surround itself with a steel gate for no one to enter- or leave (if attacked).

#2 – with all that’s going on- we have a house of leadership who doesn’t care- their answer is to put up another “wall” .. so if this school is attacked- how do the kids get out.

#3 – we are still living in a world of thoughts and prayers (but mostly ignorance). Wake up people

What Trump has done in two years to incite all this is not a shocker to anyone — only those who have not seen these fences at high schools – haven’t been harassed by police or racists – haven’t been around the bad he is spreading with his rhetoric.. are supporting this monster – because they live in areas where this doesn’t occur..

Today was an eye opener of the future of MAGA..

The Absurd and Uneducated claims by a White American Racist…

This week in America will certainly be one that is hopefully just a small blip in the era of Trump that America can soon move on from.

This post is not about politics- and I am certainly not here to persuade a person to think or feel one way or the other. This is just another fact checker at fake and horrifying things that are posted on social media. This particular post struck a nerve with me because it was posted by a family member and I am still at a total loss of words. The one bit of saving grace I have is they were not raised in my household- and it’s very clear when you read this little excerpt posted on their social media.

Take a minute to read this – and share this with your friends and loved ones- to show them how ignorant people can be – especially on social media when they are hidden behind a computer screen.

Reminder- these are in no way – shape- or form – my beliefs. At the bottom, I have written in bold a response to the absurd and uneducated claims of a Proud American Racist..


URGENT PLEASE READ !!!!

Let’s talk about this?  Why is it? And I have friends of all races and most of them think it’s funny and true.
I have often wondered about why Whites are racists, and no other race is.??
Or if your a TRUMP Supporter your a racist.
I’m making a point… and whether we like it or not, I’m telling the truth.
There are African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, Arab Americans, etc.
And then there are just Americans..or Trump supporters
You pass me on the street and sneer in my direction.
You call me ‘White boy,’ ‘Cracker,’ ‘Honkey,’ ‘Whitey,’ ‘Caveman” ‘Maga loser’.. And
that’s OK…
But when I call you, Nig ger, Ki ke, Towel he ad, Sand-nigg er, Camel Jockey, Beaner, Goo k, or Chink ..  or a TRUMP Supporter, You call me a racist.
You say that whites or Americans commit a lot of violence against you..or have suppressed your race..
So why are the ghettos and the countries these imagrants are fleeing the most dangerous places to live?  Yet we are racist if want to close our borders.
You have a democratic open border policy for fake asylum seekers.
You have the United Negro College Fund. You have Martin Luther King Day.
You have Black History Month.
You have Cesar Chavez Day.
You have Yom Hashoah.
You have Ma’uled Al-Nabi.
You have the NAACP.
You have BET….
If we had WET (White Entertainment Television), we’d be racists.
If we had a White Pride Day, you would call us racists.
If we support TRUMP and our borders you call us racist.
If we had White History Month, we’d be racists.
If we had any organization for only whites to ‘advance’ OUR lives, we’d be racists.
We have a Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, a Black Chamber of Commerce, and then we just have the plain Chamber of Commerce.
Wonder who pays for that??
A white woman could not be in the Miss Black American pageant, but any color can be in the Miss America
pageant.
If we had a college fund that only gave white students scholarships… You know we’d be racists.
There are over 60 openly proclaimed Black Colleges in the US
.Yet if there were ‘White colleges’, that would be a racist college.
In the Million Man March, you believed that you were marching for your race and rights.
If we marched for our race and rights, you would call us racists.
You are proud to be black, brown, yellow and orange, and you’re not afraid to announce it.
But when we announce our pride in our country to close the border and send  illegal imagrants home, you call us racists.
You rob us, car jack us, and shoot at us. Steel our tax money, use  our money for our vets and americans that are homeless by illegals getting Medicare and food stamps and all the resources our tax dollars go to pay for people who think our country is bad.
But, when a white police officer shoots a gang member that’s a illegally here or beats up a b drug dealer running from border agents and the law and posing a threat to society, you call them a racist.
I am proud American white male….. But you call me a racist.
Why is it that only whites can be racists??
There is nothing improper about this e-mail.
Let’s see which of you are proud enough to send it on.
I sadly don’t think many will.
That’s why we have LOST most of OUR RIGHTS in this country.
We won’t stand up for ourselves!
BE PROUD TO BE A WHITE AMERICAN PATRIOT.  It’s not a crime
YET…. But getting very close!
It is estimated that ONLY 5% of those reaching this point in
this e-mail, will pass it
on.”

————————

I was absolutely blown away by this and felt that I had to make a response. Of course I have been attacked in the comments following mine and called various names by all these people who claim to NOT be racist. And after childish bickering, I realized that this is Trumps following- this is what he has them believing- and as scary it is that these people- many of whom I would assume are educated- are spreading this false and horrifying rhetoric to their children and communities.

Here is what I posted back for them – honestly knowing that none of them would ever read it- because it doesn’t fit Trump or his administrations talking points- but I hope that one of them would read it and gain a little education about the organizations they are attacking and why they were formed. And just like the four colored women who Trump is trying to say “hate” America- I will not be silenced..

I have often

wondered about why Whites are racists, and no other race

is.??

Or if your a TRUMP Supporter your a racist.

 making a  point…and whether we like it or

not, I’m  telling the truth.

This whole thing is laughable because it seems as though it was made by a small minded racist, who appears to know little about our Country’s history..  Please see all the red below so you may better understand our country and what racism is.

There are African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian

Americans, Arab Americans, etc.

And then there are just Americans..or Trump supporters You pass me on the street and sneer in my direction.

There really are no Americans, nearly every single person who lives in our country- including you- is likely from the family of immigrants at some point in time. So, I am going to assume that by American, you mean white man or woman. I don’t think being a Trump supporter is getting you the sneers, I think people smell a racist.

You call me ‘White boy,’ ‘Cracker,’

‘Honkey,’ ‘Whitey,’ ‘Caveman’.Maga loser.. And

that’s OK…

Who is this okay for? No where in the world is this acceptable language. Unfortunately, there are bad in all groups of people. So its not at all fair to generalize these racist statements saying they are a common thing that happens to white man- I’m calling BS.

But when I call you, Nig ger, Ki ke, Towel he ad, Sand-nigg er,

Camel Jockey, Beaner, Goo k, or Chink ..  or a TRUMP Supporter You call me a racist.

Same as above, these terms you have spelled out are sickening- and they do not equate you as a Trump supporter I don’t recall hearing Trump ever use this language. If you use this language, you in fact are a racist.

 

You say that whites or Americans  commit a lot of violence against

you..or have suppressed your race..

I am so confused when you continue to say Americans and Whites as the same thing. It is not the same thing. American does not mean white and I would hope you don’t teach your children that. This is actually edging the racist line (along with every other statement made here).

So why are the ghettos and the countries these imagrants are fleeing the most dangerous places to live?  Yet we are racist if want to close our borders.

No one has ever accused our government for being racist because of closing the borders. This is just something you made up in an apparent rant. All Americans want border control- it is just not a very humane way that it is currently happening. But this is not a racist or Trump issue. This has been happening for years. This is all just another example of Trump and his followers making up lies to put fear in uneducated and elderly white Americans.

You have a democratic open border policy for fake asylum seekers.

Don’t generalize that all the people seeking asylum are fake. That is again a false statement. Making up lies to spread fear is a common and popular tactic with Trumps base.

You have the United Negro College Fund. You have Martin

Luther King Day.

When you say You- who do you mean? Americans have a United Negro College Fund and we all have and all get celebrate and remember Martin Luther King Day. Do you even know why we celebrate Martin Luther King? You should look it up, its one of the most important pieces of history.

 

You have Black History Month.

Whites have 11 others that celebrating popular white figures in history as well as other religious traditions, based around white men and women.

You have Cesar Chavez Day.

You have Yom Hashoah.

You have Ma’uled Al-Nabi.

You have the NAACP.

You have BET….

This is where I should stop wasting my time, because you must not even be aware of how racist you sound when you say “You have”- let me correct your false statement- WE HAVE- we meaning ALL Americans. This is where you take Trumps advice and leave this awful place that treats the white man and woman so poorly… and don’t let the door hit ya.

 

If we had WET (White Entertainment Television), we’d be racists.

This is so silly. Lol. You must not have re-read this- American TV is white entertainment television. Over the years, there has been an increase in non white leading actors and actresses, but it is still 45 to 1 on mainstream tv. This is not the stupidest thing you have said yet- but ranks pretty high up there.

If we had a White Pride Day, you would call us

racists.

You have 364 days of white pride day in the United States. So stupid.

 

If we support TRUMP and our borders you call us racist.

Why would anyone think that because you support the borders that you are seen as racist. This is quite confusing. Just because Fox News and Trump spread false stories and start crazy petty lies to pump up the base, and try to say Dems don’t want border security- its just not true. So, this is another stupid statement.

If we had White History Month, we’d be racists.

Confused on why people would think you are a racist? Do you think all black people are racist because they have Black History Month? I’m really starting to think whoever wrote this is a little bit racist. But just slightly, I don’t want to say uneducated, because my purpose is not to attack, but damn- this person seems pretty dumb.

If we had any organization for only whites to

‘advance’ OUR lives, we’d be racists.

Make sure you understand the reason for these organizations. I’m also starting to think this is a young child writing this who has not gone through American History. This is laughable too- like man- just proofread what you just wrote. And where is your mother does she know you wrote this?

 

We have a Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, a Black Chamber of Commerce, and then we just have the plain Chamber of Commerce.

Whats your point? Do you know what a Chamber of Commerce is for? Research before you write pointless statements that further show your ignorance to this subject.

 

Wonder who pays for that??

 Do you know? or just asking for a friend?

A white woman could not be in the Miss Black America pageant, but any color can be in the Miss America pageant.

Again, do your research… (I’m getting tired of writing this over and over) Black woman were not allowed in the pageant to begin with – so they formed a version for Black women. So don’t spin it as if they have both been around since day one and that whites are not being allowed to compete at the other pageant. Some important things in our society happened in the 1940’ and 1950’s- you should read about it.

If we had a college fund that only gave white students

scholarships… You know we’d be racists.

Over 75% percent of college funds is given to white students.

 

There are over 60 openly proclaimed Black Colleges in the US

You may not have learned in school that black students were not allowed to attend universities with white students. There was a lot of fighting and national guards involved to allow integration of schools and all races are allowed to attend HBCU’s. You should walk around one of their beautiful campuses and educate yourself rather than spreading false propaganda..

Yet if there were ‘White colleges’, that would be a

racist college.

This is laughable! A mostly white college in United States-  hmmmmmm- never heard of any– lol!

 

In the Million Man March, you believed that you were marching for your race and rights.

 If we marched for our race and rights, you would call us racists.

Americans of all races marched in the Million Man March. You are sounding like you are getting all your good digs at other races in- but we should definitely NOT call you a racist- because you are TOTALLY not a racist… wink wink..

 

You are proud to be black, brown, yellow and orange, and you’re not afraid to announce it.

 But when we announce our pride in our country to close the border and send  illegal imagrants home, you call us racists.

Who has called anyone a racist for closing borders and sending illegal immigrants home? Did you even know that Obama sent home thousands more illegal immigrants than Trump? DO you even know what this issue is that has people upset? It is how they are doing it! 

You rob us, car jack us, and shoot at us. Steel our tax money, use  our money for our vets and americans that are homeless by illegals getting Medicare and food stamps and all the resources our tax dollars go to pay for people who think our country is bad.

Who in the hell is “You”??

White people steal rob shoot at a much higher rate than any other race in this country.

Steal whose tax money- Everyone (except the wealthy) pay taxes, even illegal immigrants- bet you didn’t know that. They actually paid more in taxes than your President.

And Last time I checked, our vets represent every single race in country.

 

But, when a white police officer shoots a gang member that’s a illegally here or beats up a b drug dealer running from border agents and the law and posing a threat to society, you call them a racist.

I don’t recall hearing media or people call a white policeman a racist for shooting an illegal gang member. You hear the country mad and causing uproar at white and black police officers shooting unarmed black men. This is not a race thing at all- this is a fear of the police issue.

I am proud American white male….. But you call me a racist.

I doubt a random person off the street has every called your Proud White American self a racist- unless you started speaking to them in this crazy rhetoric you have spewed above, then yeah- they probably would call you a racist. 

Why is it that only whites can be racists??

This is your belief and it is very small minded and comes directly from Mr. T’s racism playbook. racists come in all shapes sizes and colors- anyone with a brain knows this.

 

There is nothing improper about this e-mail.

The only thing improper about this email is that you have no facts and you don’t know the facts about why we have all these organizations and special funding for MINORITIES.

 

Let’s see which of you are proud enough to send it

on.

The fact that you say on here- “Let’s see who is proud enough” kind of summarizes your whole statement. If you continue to tell yourself you are not a racist- over and over- unfortunately it will not help the fact that you are in fact racist. Which you would be better off admitting and then rewriting this and fix your language to read- “you’d call me a racist” to “ yes, I am a racist.”

I sadly don’t think many will.

Sadly? You think it is sad that only a few small minded people you know would share this?

 

That’s why we have LOST most of OUR RIGHTS in this country.

I am very confused here- can you enlighten us on what rights we have had taken away from us? This is the stupidest statement in this email- it was not that hard to choose honestly, I had so many to choose from, but this one is real funny. “Lost most of our rights..” lol

———

 

I hope that we can get back to a prosperous country that was continue to grow full of diverse groups and opinions. And it is completely fine to not agree with different points of view, but that’s not what’s happening. Groups of people are being attacked because they are challenging the President. That is what a democracy is. It doesn’t mean people don’t love their country. It means exactly that, if you didn’t love your country why would you bother to fight to make it better for everyone.

Good luck this political season- and whatever line you sit on or across- don’t spread lies and hate. Don’t let this further tear the country apart!

More weird airport encounters..

I have not posted recently about the wild things that I encounter during my daily travel, and mostly because I think I have become so numb to the dumb things people do. But I’ll share a few stories that have come my way this early Thursday morning as I embark to Canada for the weekend.

1. My first story brings us all back to the “dreaded” moving walkway. This brilliant idea that has been scattered through every airport in the world still remains a mystery to so many. For those still curious on what this moving conveyor belt is, let me help solve this airport mystery– low and behold….. this walkway helps you “move” faster through any airport to get you from point A to point B with a little extra “pep” to your step. This is NOT to stand on so you can chat with your travel companion.

Today in Memphis, I pondered on whether I should or should not jump on board this mysterious walkway as it seemed as those many fellow travelers were also going for this speedy ride to our gate. I took the plunge and enjoyed my speed walk for maybe 5 steps until we hit the traffic jam of two airport employees who decided they would stand side-by-side and refuse to let anyone pass them. I could hear numerous moans and groans (they were probably mostly coming from me) and people saying “excuse me” to politely move by.. but these workers were not having our impatience with them and just carried on talking to each – and not moving. This ride ended up taking us 3.5 minutes before we were impatiently able to exit- questioning whether to ever use this service again.

2. The second encounter is just disgusting and makes me wonder about humans and their lack of tact.

I am in the Detroit Sky Club- trying to decide if I want to dabble in some dry packaged scrambled eggs. I open the warmer where they have been resting for hours and stir them around convincing myself that this is not the right move- I noticed a careless man talking on the phone through his AirPods – loud for all to hear him of course because he has no tact- and he is trying to hurry my up because he is ancy to get his eggs. This man gets that sneeze type look on his face- I see it- and then watch him open face sneeze all over the food counter – and all up in the open egg warmer. The look I gave this man could have burned through him and the guy behind him. He said sorry to me and I told him that he needs to apologize to the entire sky club for being tactless and spreading his disgusting virus to innocent people who know how to act in public. He told me I was an asshole and should respect elders. I told him if he acted like an elder and not a toddler who can’t cover his mouth- he might be liked in society.

It’s still early and one more airport to get through- hoping for the best…

Puerto Rico- a hidden gem of the Caribbean

It’s been awhile since I have posted on my travel adventures. I wish I could find the time to write more but sometimes my couch and Netflix trump spending more time staring at my phone and computer.

This blog is just to talk about a hidden Caribbean gem that most people would never think to travel to- Puerto Rico!

Let me start by saying that although this is an American province, the culture is everything but American – and that’s a good thing!

First, let’s start with the language- I was thinking I would arrive and everyone would be speaking wonderful English as they ventured on their own day to day activities. I was very wrong. More times than not during our trip, there was a communication barrier. Many of the adults we met at restaurants or checking in to hotel or in our Uber rides did not speak English at all. Over a dozen times I had to open up google to do some translating magic!

Next, my favorite part of travel: food! The food on the island did not disappoint – especially because I love plantains. Mofongo is the traditional island dish and every time I am here I search for this local treat of mashed up plaintains topped with your choice or protein or vegetables, served with beans and rice! I have yet to have a bad experience with this local treat. Other traditional foods include delicious Meat turnovers (empanadas), avocado salad, fresh ceviche, ham croquettes, and fried chicken and pork. If you are dieting during your stay in PR, your best bet would be to hit up the grocery store.

The men and women of the Island are all very nice and welcoming to tourists! Ladies (or gents) if you are headed to Puerto Rico to find a man, and tall is your taste- you may come up empty handed. The tallest man I saw was pushing 5’10. If you like tattoos, this is your spot. I have never seen more inked men and women. Gents (or ladies) looking for a Puerto Rican girl, this is a wonderland. The women are beautiful and love to show off their curves in skin tight outfits. If you like blondes- this is not your island – unless you fancy an American tourist.

Beach life in Puerto Rico- confidence is key on the public beaches. I saw more buns split by a small piece of fabric than any other Caribbean place I have been to. I almost felt out of place because I didn’t have a speedo or thong and personal speaker blaring house music. I honestly didn’t know that man thongs were such a thing and they come in ALL sizes (except small apparently). The actual beaches in the San Juan area are not the most beautiful of the Caribbean. But the blue and sun filled sky made up for it! Water is a little rough and I would not recommend for little kids. I watched numerous people get slammed by good size waves in the rough water.

Where to stay- I can only speak for myself and the 3 times I have been – but I loved the Condado area. It’s a touristy area but full of local vibes! The hotels are not your normal 3-4 star places you would normally stay in. Most hotels are small – local owned – and typical from what you find anywhere outside the US.

I stayed in Isla Verde area on one trip but this area seemed to be in the not so friendly beach area and the beaches are very plain.

Must do things in Puerto Rico:

1. Old San Juan Fort: I love learning about how islands and cultures came to be- and this fulfills all of that! The fort is very well kept and one of the top spots for scenic pictures! Plan to spend a few hours there to take it all in!

2. El Yunque Rainforest: this was a neat little adventure if you like to hike. You descend down a wet and slippery trail to a beautiful waterfall you can swim in. It’s a rainforest so expect to get wet! But it is well worth the hike!

3. La Placita: this is the bar district in San Juan where you will find all the local hot spots! So many different places to choose from- all wrapped around a little block. Our group had a blast hanging with the locals dancing the drinking night away!

4. BioLuminescent Bay: one of the coolest things I have ever done. It’s about a 45 min trip outside of San Juan and worth the drive. Here you Kayak through a little forested area that opens to a large bay- with moonlight as the only source of light. But wave your hand around in the water to experience the bioluminescent kelp that glows upon touching it. I felt like I was in the scene from The Little Mermaid. It’s an amazing experience!

5. Catamaran Snorkel Trip: looking for amazing beaches? Take a snorkel trip to Flamingo Island and a few spots where Pirates of the Caribbean was filmed! The Jolly Pirate was the group we booked with and highly recommend- great captain, great drinks the entire time you are on board, and a nice lunch and snacks. The snorkeling was some of the best I have ever seen- but the beautiful beaches you visit make this a must do excursion.

I am sure there is a lot more to do in Puerto Rico but these are my experiences and I would do them all over again the next adventure I have there! The Island is still in recovery mode from the Hurricanes that slammed the Island a few years ago- but things are looking up for those who call PR home! Can’t wait for my next visit….

#PuertoRico #SanJuan #HistoricOldSanJuan #Fort #Condado #ElYunqueRainforest #BioluminescentBay #Mofongo

Uncle-ing

Just a quick funny story to share…

Work brings me home to Idaho every once in awhile and I get to spend time with my family and play Uncle for a night with my nephew and two nieces.

Hide and Seek is the request and here is where the laughter begins…

I will spare you with the usual hide and seek; The youngest is barely hidden, the older ones hide in the closet – I pretend I don’t see them… blah blah blah.. that was for rounds 1 through 3.

I decide to make the youngest, Chloe- 3 years old- be the counter and seeker this time! So .. I knew this would be interesting. She starts counting while myself, Ashton (6) and Ellie (8) take off to hide.

(Quick reference- my parents have a patio deck out the back door- it sits relatively low to the ground- lots of shrubbery and lots of bugs- back yard is a full landscaped acre)

So … Ashton and I take off outside and Ellie hides in the house. I decide to back some patio furniture into the corner of the patio and crouch down and hide- pretty well hidden, and I hear Ashton leave the deck, unsure of where he wandered off to. I sit there in silence for a few minutes- laughing at myself because I am 37 years old- hiding on the back patio while all the adults in the house are drinking and watching football.

As I am sitting there lucky to live this hilarious, unusual life, I hear something rustling under the patio boards- and I think to myself “there is no way he climbed under this thing” .. an then I hear some grunting.. “Ashton- are you under the deck?” – “yea– and there are lots of spider webs. And rocks under here..”

Chloe is finally on the search for us and I am trying my hardest to control my laughter- but I have tears rolling down my face as I am in disbelief and thinking to myself, that, you could not pay me enough money to crawl under that deck!

So – Ashton is trying to whisper to me but I have to tell him to be quiet (even though I am worried for him that there may be some wild spiders under there.. eeek) because Chloe is close and doing our best to give up our positions.

Long story short – I gave Chloe several hints to find get her to walk further out on the deck by herself- and then she finally found me after I could no longer hold my laughter at her silly requests for “cmon you two” or “please make a sound”.

And once she found me- she wanted me to treat her the same way and give up Ashton’s position -it was a team mission if you asked her. It did take quite awhile, but thanks to Ashton’s animal calls (and me convincing Chloe that is wasn’t a real animal and it was likely her brother making the sounds) she found him under the patio.

We played several more rounds- each just as interesting! I will conclude with this: Chloe and I make a pretty good team! I always find her first (even after purposefully trying not to- she just kept calling for Uncle Josh- so I had to find her) and then she would take me directly to the other two!

Life is good!

It helps to let loose and be a kid every now and then!

Adulting 101- how to be a successful part of a crazed society.

If there is one thing I have learned about growing older- it’s that I should be replacing the word “older” with “wiser” and I am about to tell you why..

FALL- fall is awesome but sucks at the same time if you think about it.. we love to watch the leaves die and create amazing landscapes- and cool weather and warm drinks – but gives us something to look forward to that we love so much and crave: SPRING AND SUMMER- trees and Flowers blooming – rain showers and sun! But

Since you are still reading- On to the real stuff that has you here: Adulting – and it is hard – and I had no idea what was coming for me! And remember – this is a judge free zone – I am not mocking or degrading or disagreeing- this is my expression (views/commentary) of how we live in this crazy 🌎!

Let’s start with some obvious things:

1. Don’t set goals with an age in mind! Ex. I want to own my own house by 26, I want to have kids and be married by 30, etc.. Goals are great to have – but don’t set yourself up to be let down when life isn’t rolling the way you think it’s supposed to!

2. Do not attend your high school reunion! Hopefully you have moved away from your hometown- and we have this thing called Facebook and it has given us the luxury to already know what all the people from your high school are currently doing – and you likely still don’t care. So don’t go – save your money and plan a trip with people you like.

3. Don’t have kids! If you don’t have any now, save yourself the trouble and just hang out with your friends who have kids. This has made me realize that I don’t want my own. I remember how reckless and wild my and my friends were in HS, and you want me to clone myself for me to watch over- no thank you! I’ll just keep vacationing while you post monthly growth charts and first day of school pics.

4. Be smart with your money but not – cheapskate. Set up a retirement fund- set up an IRA- buy some stocks- and then spend the money you work hard to earn! You deserve it! My folks and I don’t see eye to eye on this one, but I look at it like this: we get one trip around the sun, you can save all your money, but it doesn’t go into your cold earthy grave with you! Travel, try different foods, buy cool clothes and shoes, surprise your friends with little gifts, and live a little!

5. Vote- yes your vote does count! Millions did not vote and now we have a Cheeto-dicked orangutan sitting in our highest office and a bunch of clowns feeding his fat a$s circus peanuts. Vote! It is mandatory by law that your employer allows you 3 hours from on election day to get this done!

6. This is for the young readers: don’t get married. I once read a meme that made total sense about the topic of marriage. You are signing a paper to prove ownership over each other. What kind of sh#t is that? Why can’t two best friends cohabitate without a signed paper. Does this signed paper make you love someone more? I hope not. Divorce is more popular than marriage, and comes with a mess of financial issues and heartache. Also- that big huge wedding you want for thousands and thousands- forget about it and use the ceremony money for a down payment on a house- and then host a party inviting all the same people.

7. Final adult tip: while traveling through airport, DO NOT EVER continue to wear your neck pillow as you stroll to your next gate. You look like a complete idiot, and your crocs aren’t helping- you’re just letting us know you live in the dreaded South.

Now get out there and adult and don’t be be an As$h#le to people!

Just another travel day…

Today started like any other travel day: I woke up early, milled around, paid no attention to time and then realized I am about to be late to my flight. So in non-typical fashion, I gather my things at my hotel in Memphis- because my house is rented out to an Airbnb- emphasizing non-typical- and take my time (that I don’t have) and speed to make it to the airport. And like clockwork it begins….

Airport encounter #1

Female, single, name is Shelby, she is a 6th yr college senior, went out late last night. (How do I know this? I don’t, it’s purely the scenario I made up in my head while people watching her as she traveled through the airport). She is in the TSA pre line so I had high hopes for her to glide through the screening process. When she arrived at the TSA agent and my hopes were dashed. For starters, she was in the long wrong line, then she was dumbfounded that she was asked to get rid of her Gatorade bottle or drink it all before she got to the X-ray. Shelby did not like that request and stood around to further question the TSA agent. Next she tries to walk through the x ray machine with her purse and phone in hand. The guy stops her and she is so confused on what to do next because TSApre doesn’t offer trays anymore (which is weird- not her fault). Then she is cleared to walk through, and then gets randomly flagged for extra screening. She stands there confused, and then just grabbed her purse and left.. lol- TSA chases her down and then strangely- just let her go…? Weird

Bye Shelby..

Airport encounter #2

Kevin- late 30’s, just got a new job, has to travel for training in Atlanta, he has a carry on, and is possibly a virgin (Again, this is just my assumption of this persons life- which I know nothing about).

This is nothing exciting – just that annoying person… who waits until they are next to push through the conveyor, to prep for the X-ray machine . So- we all wait for him to put his wallet away, his phone, his metal jewelry, he tries to take his shoes off, and then his computer out- I remind him he doesn’t have to. He then pushes bag and then makes a little hop and skip before he achieves to do one of my travel pet peeves. He walks through the X-ray as slow as he can to make sure it is guaranteed to find any metal. Lol shaking my head and giggling to myself at how silly this guy looks, but he is happy and living his life- and excited for his new job.. lol

Encounter #3

The blondes- family of 3, all in their 50’s, all with bright bleach blonde (leaning on orange) hair, all pretty tan, and have not flown to the beach in year, they usually drive.

This was a very short encounter but I laughed out loud as I walked by them. They had been stopped and had their carryons checked because they were packing some major heat. They had full bottles of hairspray -16oz can- lots of lotion- literally every item they had exceeded 3.5oz by double digits. The best part of it, and causing another outburst- was listening to them, contemplating whether or not to leave security to check a few of their things – all toiletries items. The TSA agent let them know if would cost more to check bags over just buying new supplies once they got to the beach. I wish I had pics …

Yes.. this all happened before I got through security. The rest of my Memphis adventure did not have anything else exciting, until I arrived in Minnesota. The Avis car check out line.

Encounter #4

Two cars ahead of me is Jim. He is in his early 70’s, very conservative, does not drink, and does not put up with anyone’s B.S.

I discover Jim as I drive up to the Avis check out. Jim is outside the car and walking around the car checking for any and all scratches on his rental. He then takes a lap with the young Avis agent who is not interested in Jim’s concerns. Jim is now opening all doors and is giving the Avis agent an earful – and all I want is be a fly in that cars interior to see what Jim is bitching about. After 5 min, which seemed like 20, Jim pulls away to venture into Minneapolis traffic .. bye Jim

Of course I asked the agent what Jim’s problem was .. he was upset that the cars interior was not spotless. Bye Jim again..

And my last encounter (so far)

Encounter #5

Marcy Catherine Gallagher- she is the younger sister of Mary Catherine Gallagher- from Saturday Night Live, she is 30, and is on a very strong dose of Adderall.

I am trying to enjoy a lovely dinner at Olive Garden (do not judge me- this is a guilty pleasure of mine and no one else ever wants to go with me) and Marcy is all hopped and making me question what her co workers think of her. This woman has me on edge like I have never been before. I am honestly trying to figure out how to slip her a Xanax. She has told me she “Loves Ittttt..” numerous times, she has winked at me over 50x, she had a naughty convo about a regular customer and what she wanted to do. The only thing Marcy has not done to annoy me – sniff her armpits..

I have so much more to share about encounter #5 so stay tuned for ..

“I don’t think I got what I ordered..”

Why I have decided to give up Facebook— and maybe it’s time for you too!

Facebook was one of the first social media platforms of our time, and it began to transform the country before it slowly crept across the world. I remember exactly where i was signing up for my Facebook: sitting in my little apartment in Morehead, KY.

This was the first platform I remember feeling stimulated from something, that gave you an instant craving for more. Each day you would check to see if anyone asked to be your friend- and you searched people by what college they went to -and you posted pictures with funny lines from family guy and friends- and it seemed innocent but exhilarating.

Facebook went through many updates/upgrades and each time everyone hated it, but embraced it, and then convinced all their friends to join this marvelous would of networking. The good ol days!

Flash forward to 2018… and why I have decided to give up FB and why you should ponder the question for yourself.

I have deleted Facebook because it has changed the way I view the world, the way I view politics, mostly the way I view people, but- I deleted Facebook because I found myself deleting people I have admired and looked up to my entire life- because of politics.

To give FB a fair shot, they are only part of the reason- but I’ll share a short story of what brought me to this point….

For the last few years, since a very partisan president took over, I never cared about anyone’s political views- and I still don’t. I have many friends who are Trump supporters and many friends who are not- but I have learned the big difference in the two of them- and I will admit my own guilt of posting Political propaganda- but what I am innocent of is attacking someone’s post on their own page. I just read on their page what “I believe” and nonsense- shake my head- but keep scrolling right past them and move on with my day. But my most recent of posts struck a nerve with me and really made me rethink some relationships with really important people who I have always thought to be such wonderful and loving and accepting people. And I am sure they still are- unfortunately 95% of our Facebook friends live no one where near us, so we begin to break down their lives and what’s going on with them and how they are feeling based on what they post.

So- to sum this all up- a friend made a comment to a discussion happening over a post I wrote about how disgusting I thought it was that the President mocked a woman who is telling her story about a possible sexual assault at a rally in Mississippi. His view on the situation hit me in a weird way that I deleted them. And then I decided that Facebook is just not worth the anxiety it brings to life and the silly rage that gets you stirred up to delete someone on Facebook. It’s laughable because I still will always be great friends.

Now, obviously this is not something life threatening or a psychological trauma for anyone, but to me it was a wake up call. Facebook has far advanced from what it started as and now has because a way to manipulate, spread lies, bully, and brag. It’s so full of fake propaganda and honestly- is impossible to believe half of what you read.

So– for the time being- I will make FB my photo wall and only share one of the things I love to do most- share amazing pictures to the world- politic free- opinion free- and a sure way to not have to make poor judgments about who I thought so highly of!

To wrap it up- get off of Facebook and stop chasing the exhilarating feeling of people liking your posts and go find other ways to give you the same high you are searching for!

1. Do one good, unexpected thing for someone each day- it doesn’t have to cost you a dime. Leave a nice note on someone’s desk at work or give a water bottle to a homeless person, compliment someone’s outfit or shoes.

2. Send a nice text to a long time friend to tell them you are thinking about them.

3. Help make this divided country better – don’t spread your propaganda on social media- go out and vote- that is the best political move you can make!

4. America is still great, it’s always been great, and we have come so far in making it the best place to live. We can’t go back to the 40’s and 50’s too many politicians who set aside party lines have made this country “All for one and One for all!” Let’s go back to those days!

5. Teach your children the right things! They are too young to care about politics – so don’t push your propaganda on them and instill hatred they don’t know. Teach them to learn all cultures around and to accept everyone.

Any person, animal, or tv show a young child interacts is an influencer on their thoughts and lives.

What kind of Influencer will you be….

Facebook can be very hard to give up- here are some Tips on how to fill the void:

*Follow blogs on your interests- travel, sports, healthy eating, running – you can find anything and have good reads and updates.

*Podcasts are awesome! Find a great comedian, follow pop culture discussion, some of my friends love murder mysteries!

*snapchat / instagram / twitter (choose what and who you follow wisely 😏)

*Audio books- I have listened to a few and have enjoyed it during long rides. It makes you keep focused on the road- and on the story!

*clothing store apps- this is a dangerous option – but a fun one. I recommend Nordstrom Rack, Macy’s, H&M, Guess, and American Eagle. I check the clearance tab on all them and it’s a great way to find great deals- and pass the time!

Do you ever get over the sadness of losing someone you loved so much? Yes— read some tips on how!

As TheTravelingGringo, very few things in my life have been more satisfying than coming home to the happiest little dog in the world. Sadie – the greatest dog (Boston terrier) to ever walk the Earth- has the same routine ever single time I got home from work or out of town or even the grocery store: she would follow me to the garage door, I would usually grab a little chewy treat to keep her busy while I got in the car and shut the garage door, she would finish her snack and make her way upstairs to my bed and burrow herself a cozy- full covered spot (every once in awhile with one or two of her legs out to fight the heat of the covers), and she would nap until I returned.

As soon as I would pull in the garage, she would unravel herself from the covers and stand on my bed and wait to here the garage door to the house open- and when it shut, just like clockwork, she would hop off the bed and travel down the steps making sure not to miss a single one (she once got too excited and missed a step and then tumbled down the rest) and would run as fast as she could to see me- little stub of a tail wagging just as fast as it could, usually dancing around in a circle. She would then jump over to the small couch and i would kneel next to it and she would kiss my face and rub her neck against mine as hard as she could. Once she had enough of the loving part of us being reunited, she instantly searched for a frisbee and hours of frisbee toss from living room to kitchen had begun. This was my way of winding down from whatever my life was throwing at me.

It’s hard to believe it’s been over a month since Sadie passed but like life, it doesn’t stop because you experience tragedy in your life. I kind of laughed at myself writing the word tragedy- but to me it was and life didn’t stop. I continued to travel and continued to try to live a normal life- which mine is anything but normal. All things remained normal for me, but I found myself lost in time and work and would pull in my driveway – park in garage – walk in door – and wait to hear Sadie jump off the bed .. and then quickly reminded that it won’t ever happen again…

This last trip of mine was of normal summer fashion- left a busy work week behind and enjoyed a busy vacation- flew directly from vacation to a weekend of presenting and training for 12 hours a day – two days in a row- wrapping up 11 days of travel. I was tired and not running on full brain power and as my delayed plane descended into Memphis, I was a little sad because I was preparing myself to not be greeted at home from an excited dog.

I pulled into the garage – came through the door- and walked straight through the living and out the front door to get the mail. Sorting through the junk mail, I noticed a letter that would change my life forever. It was from my young nephew and my mother had giving me a little warning about this…. she told me that he had approached her and wanted to send a card he made to his Uncle Josh… on a piece of paper, he wrote out Sadiebug- Rest In Peace- in his own unique writing style and made a little cross. Instead of it opening the flood gates, I found myself at peace for once. I had to stop feeling sorry for myself and turn the memories that would make me sad, into something that would make me smile and get a little giggle out of…

I could honestly write a full book on this chapter of my life -but let’s get to the real point of the blog:

How do you ever get over the sadness of losing something that you loved so much?

Here are some tips (to think about):

1. The most important thing don’t – you will have constant reminders and triggers that will make you feel some kind of way. This is normal – this is mourning- you will get through them!

2. Remove all social media for a couple of months. Sure that may be hard– but what’s harder is seeing constant reminders/triggers once again that make you feel some kind of way. Even when losing a pet, don’ erase them from your life, but take down that profile pic of you and your pet.

3. Start building your new life and the new you. Life is going to go on- with or without you- choose your own path!

4. Don’t get advice from all your friends and family. They will be quick to get it, but you probably aren’t ready for it. (When my dog passed, a close friend told me the only way to get over it is to get a new one- I nearly told that person to “f@#k off”- that may work for them, but they don’t know what’s happening inside this swirling head of mine. Same can be said over a breakup- “go on a date or sleep with someone new”- no- don’t do that- Do the opposite!

5. Time HEALS everything- even when time seems to stand still. Remember to take deep breaths- and approach the new you one day at a time.

6. This is not a week long process or a month long process. This takes years. To this day, I think about a loved one quite regularly- I wonder what they are doing, how their family is, how their pets are– and I leave it in the wonder stage- I don’t go investigate it on social media- or have friends find out- or cry about to my friends and tell them how lonely I am. NOPE- I leave it at the wonder stage along with so many other things I will never find the answer too. What we don’t know usually can’t hurt us.

7. Do surround yourself with loved ones- but not to treat you like a depressed widow– but to treat you the same way they always have.

8. Find humor in life and don’t sweat the small stuff… adding positivity into other people’s lives will help your own life become positive again!

9. End the pity party– like mentioned above — life is not easy. How boring would it be if everything was perfect all the time. No one would grow, no one would be able to find out who they really are and what they stand for. New people and new pets will enter your life.

And finally….

10. Don’t look back at your past! It’s gone forever- Blaze a new trail- it’s likely to end up better than the trail that got you where you are today!

Why everyone needs some Arubatherapy

One thing I love to do is travel the world and explore as many countries as possible, so I rarely ever repeat vacation spots. But one place has stolen my heart – a lovely quaint island full of splendor- Aruba. This blog is not to convince you to go, but to let you know how to explore this amazing 9×16 mile island!

First things first: Where to stay?

I am one who does not like to be in crowded hotels and areas that are jam packed with inexperienced travelers and their children (this seems to be a theme in my blog posts). There are two areas you can stay at in Orangjested: the low rise area (small resorts- no larger than 5 floors) or the high rise area (massive resorts). I obviously chose the low rise area after a recommendation from a friend.

Amazing hotels in the low rise:

My first choice would be Divi Tamarijn beachfront. It’s an amazing all-inclusive hotel that has all you would ever need, even if you choose not to explore the island. All the rooms on this side are two stories high- no elevator ever needed! Each room is beachfront- you can literally throw a shoe from your balcony into the amazing blue water!

The rooms are nothing super fancy- but who wants to stay in their room all day while visiting Paradise.

Food at Divi Tamarijn: the food is pretty good at all of the restaurants and I even think they improved from my first stay to my last one. Lots of restaurants to choose from- but we ended up really liking the buffet. This is weird because I am grossed out by buffets- especially at resorts. But this buffet is nice- lots of different options and every meal had some type of carving station and you can get pastas, gyros, steak and fish specially prepared for you- with very short wait times. The fruits were delicious each day and found myself making mini sandwiches to cure my day long craving for food.

Drinks at Divi Tamarijn: the drinks are good as long as you are specific on how you like them made- I was baffled when one bartender told us about the amount of people who complain that the drinks are too strong. I honestly did not know that was thing.. I prefer a strong bourbon and was never disappointed the whole week. Lots of people order frozen drinks (insert eye roll) so sometimes it can take a couple minutes to put in your drink order. All the bartenders are very friendly and personable and take the time to get to know you on a personal level.

What to do in Aruba?

Depending on your liking – If you want to just chill- this resort is the absolute best place on the island to sit under your little hut and soak in the sun! However- I am an adventure seeker – and can’t sit still for that long- especially in the sun (my pale ginger self would run out of 100 spf sunscreen after 3 days! SO – here is what you must do:

Once at the resort, rent a Jeep Wrangler for 2 days! You will not regret it! Next, get your Jeep and head for the California lighthouse and let your adventure around the island begin!

First stop: snorkeling!

Just past the high rise area, there is an area where all the boats bring tourists to snorkel- so drive there and jump in the water with equipment that you can check out for free from the resort.

Once you check out some fish, continue your drive towards the lighthouse and then get ready for my favorite part of Aruba- exploring the unpaved back side of the island. It absolutely requires a Jeep Wrangler to explore on your own! It takes some time to drive the whole back side as you cannot go too fast because of the terrain.

There are so many neat stops to get out and take pictures including abandoned surf houses, some ancient ruins and rocky cliffs that look over the amazing but very rough waters that are not swimable (although we did see some pro surfers one day- which was pretty amazing to watch them ride the waves)!

One absolute must do: Drive to the Natural pool! The drive is absolutely treacherous but fun at the same time- you will understand why a 4×4 is necessary. Cost is $11 per person to drive to the pool! Best of luck navigating the jacked rocks and boulders – and if you get car sick- this may not be for you- lol.

The Natural pool is a swimming hole that has been carved out by the waves crashing in over time.

Other places you must go to:

San Nicolas- A true experience of Aruban life! Amazing restaurants and a cool local vibe! Also one of the most amazing beaches- Baby Beach. Follow the signs as it is very easy to get to.

As you get close- you have the option to take a right to Baby Beach- but on your way out, be daring and take the unpaved road to the left and go explore more of the abandoned surf houses, and old prison guarded by goats, and swim in some amazing water!

And if you explore unpaved roads, you never know what you might find…. we found this…

Zoom in closely…

A few other things you must do:

Go to the grocery, buy a cheap cooler and fill it with alcohol and snacks. They have no laws against eating in your Jeep- but even better- you can also drink. Just be careful 😉!

Go eat at an Authentic restaurant – yes I recommended you stay at an all inclusive- but there is nothing better than taking in the real culture!

The sunsets every night rival any place I have ever been!

The wildlife is fun too- Iguanas everywhere- some beautiful bird- and lots of crabs on the back side!

I could probably continue writing about how much I love Aruba for days- most probably didn’t even make it this far into the blog. But if you did, let me know when you want to go to Aruba and I am happy to show you around!