Where They Can Go

	Help me out here.  Going out on a flimsy limb with this one, but I'm compelled, no, 
ruled by logic.	
	Watched another story on the national news this evening about where transgender 
kids can go, as in: “When you gotta go, you gotta go.”  
	Apparently there are those who cannot abide a transgender male's use of a women's 
restroom or a transgender female's use of a men's restroom.
	Come on, folks. Both humans will enter whichever restroom, enter a stall, conduct 
their necessary business, wash up (please – everyone!), and leave.
	Why?  There are no urinals in women's restrooms, so transgender females, will, like all other females, use a stall.  And, by the way, stalls come with doors that lock.  
Transgender males, likely not anxious to try a urinal, will more than likely also use a 
stall.  With a locked door.  And of course, anybody who has to sit down will use a stall.
	So what's the problem, really?  As is the case with many of our major social issues, 
it's bigotry and intolerance.  We've transformed too many things that really don't affect usin any material way into social litmus tests.  
	If I ever get to caring who uses which restroom I'll be sure to remember not to do 
much traveling outside the U.S., where I've encountered cleaning ladies mopping the 
floor right next to me, where those who preceded me did a poor job of aiming, and unisexrestrooms where I've washed my hands next to the lady I admired in the mirror behind thebar.
	I'm not reading or watching any more dreck about which restroom, but I will take a minute to ponder the craziness that popped up a while ago about eliminating the restroomsigns noting that employees must wash their hands at the end of each visit.  Thankfully 
that proposal to get government out of our way was dead on arrival.  Good grief.

Seeking Leadership

Help me out here…. I’m still insisting that it’s possible to nominate and confirm someone to the U.S. Supreme Court who will decide cases without having to check with the DNC, the RNC, the latest opinion polls, a focus group, the nominator’s party, the political parties those who advise and consent belong to, the media, Wall Street, the 1%, etc.
Have to wonder, given the publicity and the fact of the deep friendship between Justices and political opposites Ginsberg and Scalia, whether there are two such U.S. Senators, respected by their peers, who could sit down with the President and come up with a nominee that could be confirmed.
Let’s have some leadership. Please! Good grief…..

SITREP

Vets will recognize the title as the military acronym “Situation Report.” Today I'm a bit stuck for a title because I have several observations, commentaries, etc., as I pursue what a friend has called imitating the late Andy Rooney.  Would that I were that talented, but 
here goes anyway, a kind of situation report for a chilly February day in 2016.

First, have you noticed the burgeoning number of ready-to-eat stuff in the grocery stores?The deli displays are captivating.  Except for the fried chicken I have to have about once a month, I don't know how those dishes taste, but they sure look good.  And opening a 
can of soup and heating it is apparently too challenging for today's consumers.  Now you can buy soup in those little plastic things you use to make coffee in your Keurig brewer.  And I'm looking at coupons for Pace and Prego “Ready Meals” and Campbell's “Oven 
Sauces.”  Do you think the  much loved military MRE's (Meals Ready-To-Eat) will soon be available at your local supermarket?

My granddaughter attended a Saturday morning class intended to involve more girls in 
coding.  Back in the day we called it programming.  When did it become coding?  Not 
that the word isn't appropriate.  I remember writing programs for then popular IBM 
computers (circa 1963-67) that couldn't do what a cell phone can do today.  Many of 
those programs were written in Autocoder.  We also programmed in FORTRAN and 
COBOL, which, along with Autocoder, were then known as “compilers.”  Compliers 
were programs themselves, programs that translated what we did in Autocoder, 
FORTRAN and COBOL into “machine language.”  I just read those sentences again and no longer wonder why people thought we computer types were speaking a foreign
language.  I guess coding is the better word.

And a recent report from the OECD quoted in TIME Magazine, 2/15/2016, at page 13, 
shows that “People in the U.S. and England ages 16 to 19 are among the most illiterate in the developed world.”  May explain why a recent Facebook posting proved once again 
that the average college student, at Stanford no less, couldn't name the Vice President or amember of the U.S. Supreme Court.  Bet you are wondering what in the world is OECD? Me too, so I looked it up:  The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)  Google OECD – it's a very interesting outfit based in Paris.

And to finish on a lighter note, a friend asked his Facebook friends to tell us about their 
first cars, a request that produced a number of interesting stories and wonderful photos.  My 1947 Ford Coupe looked something like this:
 
Well, it had the same shape anyway.  You can buy this one for $50,000. Wish I still had mine.  Loved the rumble seat, the 2-panel windshield, the ignition switch and button starter, and the purchase price of $50.  Yes, that is $49,950 less than the one in the photo.  
I bought mine from a guy who was shipping out of Army Language School in Monterey, CA, and sold it a few months later for $50 when I shipped out.

And finally, a word about my name.  My diploma from Mt. Carmel H.S., Chicago, IL,
contains the name Joseph David Bohlin.  I am still Skip, the name my mother used, to mysisters and cousins.  I am Joe to most everyone I played ball with and to everyone to whom I didn't want to have to explain Einar.  When I appeared in the Cook County Clerk's Office, at the age of 17 and 4 months, for a copy of my birth certificate to furnish to the U.S. Air Force, the nice lady gave me a copy for Einar Bohlin.  I told her that was my father, but she pointed out that my father, Einar Axel Bohlin, was listed in the box titled “Father,” and that my legal name was Einar Bohlin.  No Joseph, no David, and not even my 
Confirmation name (Christopher).  Just “Einar NMN Bohlin,” no middle name.  Looking back, I wish I'd stuck with Skip.  It was preppy before preppy was cool......

Trombones!

J. P. McCarthy was a popular morning radio talk show host on WJR in Detroit back when Michigan was our adopted State for a bunch of years, mostly the 70’s.

Every morning he’d send out birthday wishes to family, friends, and celebrities. For those reaching the ripe old age of 76, he’d refer to the main song from “The Music Man,” a 1962 movie. The song is “76 Trombones,” and J. P. would say something like: “And for Cary and Rita and Fred it’s trombones!”

More than I can count he’d broadcast a few bars of the then familiar march you can check out at:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBQWsBiM5YY

Yesterday was my turn: another click on the age meter, another line to scroll down to get to 1940.

Once again I count my blessings. Once again I am so fortunate and grateful to be blanketed with the love and best wishes of family and friends.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Trombones!