Monthly Archives: June 2013

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG FRIDAY 6-28-13

The West Coast Heat Wave is making headline NEWS today. Yesterday we wrote about the heat waves that hit us with some regularity if you look over time. The other stories I am hearing and reading today have somewhat a bizarre twist. One story, a mother left her baby inside her car with a note on top….”Hi, I am baby tommy, if I appear to be in trouble please call my mommy at 123-456-1234″. Now that is creative, and rather stupid, I think.

How often we see animals, dogs usually, inside a car in a parking lot. You would think the owners would know that a car heats up several degrees more than the temperature outside, even with the windows cracked. Also I get upset when I see a mom or dad running with a child in a carriage suffering from the heat that radiates up from hot cement sidewalks.

There is a lot of good advice on handling this weather when it comes. One of my favorites is a nice cotton towel soaked in ice water, wrung out and placed over my shoulders and neck. It can move around with me as I do things, and keeps the blood stream cool throughout the body. Not expensive and easy to do. I even wear it on the way to the pool.

Stay COOL everyone. Have a great weekend, and be kind to yourself today!

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG 6-27-13

Boy, it’s HOT! OK, so how hot is it?

Each year we approach summer in the Sacramento area, and when it gets over 100 degrees, we start talking about the weather, and history of hot days in the area. I looked up the history of weather in the area and found out that the first weather data collected in the area started at 4:37 AM on July 1st, 1877. The observation was taken by the Army and telegraphed back to Washington, DC. The all-time high recorded was 114, July 17th, 1925. The longest consecutive days over 100 was a record of 11 days in July 2006. Temperatures exceeding 105 or higher is reported by the US Weather Bureau as 7 in August, 1990.

Our history of heat waves with consecutive days of over 100 degrees broken by a day or two below the century mark has been numerous. Periods of time where 100 degree temps exceeded 10 to 12 days occurred in 1980 and a period of 14 out of 16 days above 100 degrees occurred in 1929.

So the next 7 day period appears to fall into 4 at or over 100 degrees. Saturday 100, Sunday 102,  Monday 105 and Tuesday 105. Stay COOL!

All this data from the Sacramento US Weather Bureau office.

Have a great day and be kind to yourself today.

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG WEDNESDAY 6-25-13

The Supreme Court has made another decision that will probably alter the course of the United State for ever. At 10:00 am this morning the court declared that the Defense of Marriage Act, passed in 1960 was unconstitutional. This opens up states rights to allow same sex marriages. In California, Prop 8 is still being discussed since voters ratified it in a general election. The Federal Government however must recognize same sex marriages particularly in the case of surviving spouses and treatment under the IRS rules. This is what prompted the case in the first place. No matter what, the social change from this ruling will change the country forever, not unlike some other decisions the Supreme Court has made over time.

Have a great day, and be kind to yourself!

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG TUESDAY 6-25-13

Another major shift in the US took place today as the Supreme Court struck down a part of the Voting Rights Act, and a corner stone of the Civil Rights Act. The congress passed the voter rights act in 1965 which gave the federal government control over what had been a states right to set rules on voting in each state. The Federal Government has taken a punch in the gut with this since they have forever wanted to control election process. In the past few years we have see the fight between states and feds over making voters prove they are citizens by requiring photo ID at voting time. It also takes the feds out of congressional re-districting. Some analysis’s is saying this is a major rebuke to congress by the Supreme Court.

Maybe our system does work, it just takes a lot of time.

Have a great day. Be kind to yourself today!

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG MONDAY 6-24-13

The weekend was busy. I visited a group having a reunion as they visited good times together 30 years ago. They meet once a year to remember the good times, and yesterday, one of the original founders of the group read the roster of 1987. It was fun to hear the comments, but the sad part was how many members had passed. There were originally been 100 members, and it appeared to me that about 25% were no longer here. I was impressed with the reactions as they all remembered their former friends with fondness and humor. There was a genuine feeling of respect to those no longer there. I hope in 30 years organizations I have belonged to, and a circle of friends sit around having a pot luck and BBQ with a glass of wine, remember me!

Have a great day and be kind to yourself!

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG FRIDAY 6-21-2013

Here we go again! The federal panel has again ordered California to release another 10 thousand prisoners because of overcrowding in the state prison system. This political battle has been gong on for years. The panel started by ordering the state to build additional facilities and mental health facilities to the tune of 8 billion dollars. The state leaders, reluctant to deal with that came up with a plan to reduce the population rather than build additional facilities. Then they came up with moving a large part of the population to the county jails. County jails are not equipped to handle long term incarnation, and lacks proper medical facilities to handle the large base of mental health problems they are forced the handle.

So what is the end result? Released prisoners go back to their home towns and counties, and the local Sheriff must deal with them anyway. Guess who pays for that? Not the state, the local residents take the hit because the Sheriff’s budget is paid out of the local tax base.

Also, the Fed Panel takes no responsibility for this since they don’t select what prisoners are released. That is up to the state who then hands the problem down to the local communities and counties.

Some say, but the released prisoners may not commit a crime and therefore not on the local system. True, however a high percentage do commit a crime since this is the way they may survive. The alternative is taking welfare and food stamps, which you pay for through taxes too. The other alternative is they turn homeless, and try and survive off the good will of the local citizens who support the charities and churches that provide free services to the homeless. There has been a major uptick here.

There is some county and state services for mental and general medical help. Oh by the way you pay for that too.

It would appear that this is another major pass the buck process with the final buck stopping at the local street corner.

Have a great weekend, and be kind to yourself!

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG THURSDAY 6-20-13

The NEWS beat is always interesting. In one day the press swung its attention from FBI, IRS, and the administration involvement in spying on us citizens and possible violations of our constitution, to the coverage of a 51 year old actor from New Jersey who created a mafia character who america loved. American’s love there celebrities, and when one passes, its gets front page coverage. In the meantime the Senate is about to pass an illegal immigration bill that could change the face of america forever. Hopefully we will get press coverage on that, its cost to us taxpayers, and impact on the future leadership of this country.

Sorry to be short today, need to catch Dr. Oz….

Have a great day, and be kind to yourself!

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG WEDNESDAY 6-19-13

I started taking music lessons at 5 years old. My Grandparents and Parents were all musicians, and I was surrounded by sax, guitar, drums, piano, organ, trumpet, trombone and bones players. Bone’s you say…yes bones. These were two ivory pieces about 10 inches long and an inch wide that you held in your fingers and snapping your wrists made a clacking noise that added to the rhythm sounds of a group.

My grandmother was a piano teacher, and her gift to all grandkids was free piano lessons. I loved it, except for the hour each day in summer that I had to practice. As I moved on to high school, I joined everything, and since I could read music from early youth, I got to sing and play a lot in Marching Band (Free entrance to all sporting events) Dance Band (free admission to dances) Jazz Ensemble, Orchestra and then on to my own band which was a hoot. Hardest time I have was keeping the other musicians on the band stand…they all wanted to dance with their girl friends. This pushed me to be able to play all instruments at least on some songs so they could dance.

On to Radio and playing for lounges and dances on weekends. Was a wonderful fun thing to do, and always relaxing. Listening to music is great, but playing and singing is so much more rewarding. About 15 years ago, I decided to buy a keyboard that would allow me to recreate the big band sounds, and sing those great songs from the 20′s, 30′s, 40′s, 50′s and 60′s.

What brought this to mind today? I had a wonderful experience two weekends ago. I have been attending a nice church and Rev. Mary ask me to play keyboard and sing at a church social following the morning service. I started out with a quiet background sound and no one was paying much attention, talking and enjoying the pot luck. That is OK, that was my job….be background. After about 20 minutes, I switched over the a nice quiet jazz band sound, and sang one of my all time favorites “DREAM”. I had the greatest surprise….several couples got up and started to dance. I played several more tunes, and almost everyone danced to the music.

Was a wonderful feeling to entertain and make others happy while so much is going on that makes us crazy. Rev. Mary was right, there is a lot of joy when you bring some joy to others.

Have a great day and be kind to yourself!

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG TUESDAY 6-18-13

The meeting yesterday between Russian President Putin and our President Obama is being touted as “Icy”. The topic is Syria and our support to the rebels and Russia saying they plan to support the current leadership. It brings to mind that we are headed into another war front in an already lousy situation in that part of the world. It brought me to thinking about the lifetime of watching our two countries in disagreement over supporting one side or the other of a conflict at ground level in another country.

When civil wars in small countries cause the two super powers to face off and start sending weapons into the theatre supporting opposite sides, the world gets nervous with good reason. When our country is at war, the drain on our financial status and our human resources are placed into harms way, one must question why? Is it ideology? Is it economic? Frankly few of us really know what is really behind it all.

Russia and the USA were allies in WW 1 and WW 2. We were supporting opposites in KOREA. China and Russia supported the North and the US and Allies supported the South, an agreement that started when the Allies split the previous KOREA that was ruled by Japan since 1910. The South Korea government was formed democratic and the North went Communist.

Things have been touchy since. In the meantime, weapons are sold and money is spent as these conflicts spark up on a regular basis.

The debate is also interesting. Those that say we need to be strongest to keep the world working toward peace while others preach we need to continue to get weaker to set the example. The truth here is in History. Lets hope both super powers are reading it.

Have a great day! Be kind to yourself today!

BARRY’S BLOG

BARRY’S BLOG MONDAY 6-17-13

I heard and read a lot of comment and Father’s Day wishes yesterday and today, and heard three distinct messages. Children who appreciated what their fathers taught them, and the love they received, fathers somewhat apologizing for not being better fathers and mothers commenting that they raised their children and made a home for them alone. It was an emotional day for everyone as we all examined how we felt about our fathers and if you’re  a father or not, how that played our in your life.

My dad was a good man even though we were often of different paradigms about business, and politics, we respected each other, and he was a great teacher and example. Was good to re-visit the memories.

Have a great day and be kind to yourself!