Poison Pero is RIGHT!

Thursday, June 21, 2018


Saturday, June 16, 2018


"If you are going to have children, you should want to be a good father.  If you want to be a good father, the best way to ensure it happens is to be a good husband." - Jay Caruthers

Those who know me well, and those who follow my blogs regularly, know I consider myself to be a product of five amazing women:  Melissa (wife), Jackie (mother), Krissi (sister), Holly and Brooklyn (daughters).

But there have been a few men who have made a difference in my life, as well - a father and virtual father figures.  I've only made mention of a few in the past, so on this Father's Day I'm going to make note of all of them...I have not seen or spoken to most of them in decades.  If anyone who reads this knows of them please forward this post - I would love for them to know how much they have meant to me.

There is also a woman I have never made mention of.  I will do so here, because she filled a similar void in my life as many of those listed.

Jim Caruthers:  My father.  My first hero.  Like many fathers and sons, our relationship has seen its ups and downs over the years.  I'm glad it's is better at this point than it's been in a long time...For good, bad and otherwise I am my father's son.  I love him terribly.

Sara Dusenberry:  4th grade teacher.  My life was turned upside-down when I was 8-10 years old.  This woman took a special interest in me and helped me greatly...I can only remember the name of a one teacher from my childhood (non-coach) - I have never forgotten her.  She was special, and she made me feel special.

Paul Pierri:  Father of my best friend.  When I was 10 my mother had Krissi and I go to an after school babysitter.  I have no idea what this lady's name was;  I just know she lived in the cul de sac with the Pierris...Paul and Anne Marie had enough children to care for (nine), but they more or less took me in for the next five years.  I truly loved, idolized and idealized this family.  Theirs was the family type I wanted, and if I couldn't have it as a kid I would create it as an adult - minus seven extra kids ;)

Ron Steinberg:  Teacher and coach.  I took PE all four years in high school, and was a Teachers Aide for Coach Steinberg's classes much more often than the school would have preferred for one simple reason - I wanted to be around this man as much as possible...He knew I was troubled, and like Sara Dusenberry, he took me under his wing.  Heaven knows he wasn't a great teacher (PE and Health), but he was a great mentor.  He talked me off of many ledges.

Tom Nelson:  Father of my high school girlfriend.  I wasn't especially close with Tom (much closer to his wife Pam); in fact I was terrified of him.  But I didn't want him to think I was a complete punk, either...I was like many unguided, bored, teenage boys - I was destructive.  But there were many times when I thought about what I was going to do (mostly break and steal stuff, and being mean and cruel to others) and this man's name often came to my mind.  He was the reason I didn't do some bad things.  His was also the name that came to my mind when I did do bad things - hoping he never found out.

Sgt. William Oxford:  Basic Training instructor.  'Ox' was nowhere near what Basic Training/Boot Camp instructors are portrayed as in the movies or on TV.  He was hard and demanded excellence, but he opened up in the 'Day Room' and knew how to reach my emotions and intellect at the 'End of Day'...I only knew him for 42 days, and I was one of probably thousands of Basic Trainees he had, but his imprint on me is strong and permanent - specifically when it comes to 'responsibility', 'sacrifice', 'reliability', and 'loyalty.'

Rich Karlin:  Father-in-law.  This is truly the most decent, gentle and kind person I've ever met.  He is a giant of a man in my mind for so many reasons - mostly because in watching and talking to him I was shown that it's not weakness to be kind...I can only hope to be as loved and revered by my daughters as he is by his.  This is one of my ultimate life goals.

Dennis Prager:  Mentor.  I have met Dennis one time, and he would have no idea who I am, but I've listened to and read his genius for at least the past 15 years.  He truly is an amazing man, and by far the one I know the most about on this list...He has been the most important male in my adult life - if for no other reason, because he has confirmed how important it is to be a good husband and father.  How important it is not just to my wife and daughters, but also how important it is to my own happiness.

Each of the people listed above helped get me to the point I am at in my life - it has been a great life...A great life where my happiest and proudest moments revolve around being a husband and father.

I wish this same great life for all fathers...It is possible for those who are willing to make their wife and children the center of their life through 'sacrifice', 'responsibility', 'reliability' and 'loyalty'.

It is all worth it!

Happy Father's Day.


Thursday, June 14, 2018


Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Flag Day (June 14)

Incredibly, and sadly, that is how many Americans see our Flag - the entire United States, for that matter...It's important for everyone to understand, it's not just the Flag or the country that they hate - MORE THAN ANYTHING, IT'S PEOPLE LIKE YOU THAT THEY HATE!


Luckily, most Americans not only respect our Flag, but revere what it stands for!

"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, Indivisible, with liberty and Justice for all."

When you pledge allegiance to the flag you promise loyalty and devotion to your nation. Each word has a deep meaning.

"I pledge allegiance" = I promise to be true
"to the flag" = To the sign of our country
"of the United States of America" = A country made up of 50 states, each with certain rights
"and to the Republic" = A country where the people elect others to make laws for them
"for which it stands" = The flag means the country
"one Nation under God" = A single country whose people believe in a supreme being
"indivisible" = The country cannot be split into parts
"with liberty and justice" = With freedom and fairness
"for all" = For each person in the country


The Flag of the United States of America today has 13 stripes - 7 red and 6 white - and 50 white stars on a blue field - five rows of 6 and four rows of 5. The stripes remind us of the 13 original colonies that gained us our liberty. The stars represent the states that are bound together into one country.

The Flag of today grew out of many earlier flags raised in days gone by over American soil. From the time that America was discovered, different flags flew over different parts of the country; the flags of Spain, France, Holland, Sweden, and England (and Russia).

An English flag, known as the Red Ensign, waved over the 13 colonies from 1707 to the Revolution. The Red Ensign was the merchant flag of England. It was red with a union in the upper corner combining the cross of St. George (red on white), patron of England, with the diagonal cross (white on blue) of St. Andrew, patron of Scotland.

The flag that became known as the Grand Union flag was raised over George Washington's headquarters outside Boston on January 1, 1776. The Revolutionary War had started the year before and the colonies needed a flag of their own. The Grand Union flag retained the union of the English flag. Six white stripes broke the red field into seven red stripes - a total of 13 stripes.

The first official flag of the new nation was created by a resolution of the Continental Congress meeting in Philadelphia. The resolution was passed on June 14, 1777. That is the date we celebrate each year as Flag Day. The resolution specified "that the flag be 13 stripes alternate red and white; that the union be 13 stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation." Since the resolution did not state how the stars were to be arranged, flag makers arranged them in different ways, among them; rows, in a half circle, and in a full circle. The one adopted was made by Betsy Ross and had the stars in a full circle.

The Flag that waved over Fort McHenry when it was bombarded, September 13-14, 1814, was a 15 star and 15 stripe flag. Two stripes and stars had been added to the original 13 on May 1, 1795. It became famous as the Star Spangled Banner. It was the Flag that inspired Francis Scott Key to write our national anthem.

The Flag of 1818 had the stripes reduced to 13. Five more stars had been added, for a total of 20. When still more states joined the United States, it became evident that the flag would get to be an awkward shape if more and still more stripes were added. Therefore, on April 4, 1818, Congress passed a law that restored the design back to the original 13 stripes. It also provided that a star be added to the blue field for each new state
Originally posted @ http://www.geocities.com/heartland/2328/flag.htm  (a dead link)

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

U.S. Army's 243rd Birthday (June 14)

I am an American Soldier.
I am a Warrior and a member of a team.
I serve the people of the United States and live the Army Values.
I will always place the mission first.
I will never accept defeat.
I will never quit.
I will never leave a fallen comrade.
I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills.
I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.
I am an expert and I am a professional.
I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.
I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life.
I am an American Soldier.

Since its birth on 14 June 1775 - over a year before the Declaration of Independence - the United States Army has played a vital role in the growth and development of our nation. Soldiers have fought more than 10 wars, from the American Revolution through the Cold War, the Gulf War, to the current Global War on Terrorism. This 242nd Birthday is a recognition of The Army’s history, traditions, and service to the Nation.

Our Army Is Serving A Nation At War

The Global War on Terrorism will not be short and it will require deep and enduring commitment. To fight this war and ensure our Nation's security into the future, the Army must provide the Joint Force with relevant and ready capabilities to support the National Security and Defense Strategies. Our Army is a campaign-quality Army with a Joint and Expeditionary Mindset, a proud member of the Joint Force expertly serving our nation and its citizens for 242-years.

The Army provides the Joint Force with the combat, combat support, and combat service support capabilities necessary to conduct sustained land warfare during extended campaigns. This is our unique contribution to the Joint Team and it will be maintained. The challenge we are addressing is how to transform our organizations, processes, doctrine and culture so that we are better able to provide this contribution in a more prompt and rapid manner.

As it has always been, Soldiers, both active and reserve, are the heart of the Army. Embued with the Warrior Ethos, our Soldiers are "Warriors of character" whose seriousness and sense of urgency are characteristic of an Army at war. Our Soldiers will always place the mission first, never accept defeat, never quit and will never leave a fallen comrade.

Re-posted from: http://www.army.mil/birthday/229/  (I only altered the number of years listed)


Friday, June 08, 2018


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