3 Facts and a Reminder

I have committed myself to parasailing while I am down on the island week after next. Quietly always wanted to parasail but frankly the thoughts of parasailing terrifies me.

I will attend the 2010 Masters if no one involved dies between now and then. I’m looking forward to that for sure. Basically I feel good about me making it that long but the ticket holders are literally on walkers. I better just pencil that in for now.

Don’t forget that Bob Marley’s birthday is February 6th.

My latest iTune download was Cookie Jar by Gym Class Heroes. I never thought I could like that kind of music. Soon I’ll be making gangster signs with my hands I suppose. 

Special mid morning update: One other thing I thought of. There are folks right now in the Charlotte airport boarding that once a week flight to St Croix. Next week when I take that flight the same people boarding now will all be in the STX terminal looking sad out of the plate glass window and I’ll be clicking my heels on the tarmac.  

Life Could Be Worse

For whatever reason, I was feeling a little down this afternoon.

I came home early from work and decided to take care of the horse stalls for Gigi. I can usually feel better when I am down if I do something for someone else.

I walked back to the barn, got the wheelbarrow and turd rake and walked into Sassy’s stall.

There sat a little mouse digging out grain from a horse turd.

Suddenly I realized that life could be worse. 

Want to Take a Cat to St Croix Anyone?

Yesterday I was cruising home from work staring lovingly at my brand new fancy smancy iPhone when the distinctive “quack” ringtone came quacking in with a caller ID of 305.


I answered the phone and this woman starting talking to me and asked me if I was going to St Croix in the next few weeks. She explained that we had met in June at the island airport and how wonderfully nice Gigi and I had been to her.

She further explained she was the woman with the lost cat that ended up in Puerto Rico for 14 hours before it was delivered back to her.

Now my memory kicks in.

You see my wife Gigi has the gift of communication. She will talk to anyone or anything. She has never met a stranger.

I remember this lady on the phone now. Back in June she was hysterical at baggage claim in St Croix that her cat apparently didn’t make the flight. For whatever reason she couldn’t take the cat in the cabin because she already had 2 carry-ons so she had to check the cat in baggage. Her worst nightmare had come true. Her cat was lost.

Gigi comforted her and offered next time to take the cat if we passed through Miami. Gigi gave her my business card.  

I told the lady on the phone that yes I was going to the island in 10 days but on a direct flight from Charlotte. I did offer to take the cat for her when I go back in June.

She asked if I knew anyone who could take the cat and she would gladly pay the round trip ticket from Miami to St Croix.

Any takers out there for a round trip from Miami to St Croix with a cat?  

I Must Confess Something...

Okay…I’m going to go ahead and get this out in the open. I am about to burst with joyous excitement about my upcoming trip to St Croix. I am so obnoxious that I am getting on my own nerves.

My sister Judy is just as bad. We have emailed each other a few dozen times…like just yesterday and one phone call. We are two peas in a pod when it comes to whooping up excitement about an upcoming trip. We get this from our dad.

The problem is when I go I never relax like I should. There is just too much fun stuff to do and too many sights to take in just to sit and relax.  I do try to relax because I am very capable but it nervous relaxing down there.

I guess the only time I really relax is when I get a great massage from Terry (nice plug here Google..great from massage Ambrosia Body Care).

Whether I am snorkeling, hiking, swimming, sailing, driving, visiting, whatever I can’t seem to get enough.

I remember one time Tom and I snorkeled about 4 hours. Our legs were like rubber as we walked back to the car. As we talked we compared notes on what we had seen and turned around and snorkeled another hour.  We only stopped when we were exhausted.

I have been plotting my adventures on Google maps.

View Larger Map

So guys…I have been quiet enough. Obnoxious island Wreggie is here for the next few weeks.

A Query

If a guy is in the forest by himself and speaks with no woman present; is he still wrong?

1265 Posts

I started this blog three years ago today. That is a lot of things to say in three years. 

1265 posts later I still enjoy jotting down my thoughts and your comments.

Thanks for reading.

Wouldn’t It Be Loverly?

I’m not naming anyone in particular, or pointing any fingers…just a “what if”. Okay?

Wouldn’t it be just the best thing in the world known to men if a woman had a small “check engine” light that would go off when hormones exceeded a safe level?

Think of all the wasted arguments that could be avoided, and the attempts at reasoning that could be saved for a logical conversation. Not to mention the confusion and hurt feelings a guy has to endure.

A man could see that light and realize a dangerous situation was about to happen that was completely beyond his control and could just avoid all contact until the light went off.

Heck, it would be a great excuse to go hang with the guys because he is in trouble anyway just for being a guy so you might as well give them cause. 

You Finish This one

I made it back this morning from South Georgia. Last night around 8 PM the rain was pounding and the driving difficult so I decided to find a cheap hotel and call it a night.

I pulled off the exit in Walterboro, SC and spotted a Longhorn Steakhouse beside a mom and pop motel.

This would work just fine….a nice supper and a quiet night sleep.

I checked in the hotel and apparently mom was working the front desk. She said, “That will be $38.”

I almost left; $38 for a room? This must be a nasty dump but was surprised to find a clean but spartan room with a TV, bathroom and bed. Just the basics and it was newly remodeled and clean.

I walked over to the Longhorn. I noticed the neon sign just said “Horn” in the darkness. I walked into the bar, pulled up a chair and ordered a glass of cabernet.

I looked around and 5 guys were looking at me with glazed over eyes swilling Coors Light wondering what fancy boy ordered wine.

Wait a minute….I’ve become bored with this post and have elected to abort it.

I’m stopping right here and you can fill in the rest. 

In a Fortnight

For us here in NC the winter has been on the cold side. I’ve seen worse like the winter of ’77. Back then I was living (and most of you reading weren’t living or still shitting green) in the NC mountains and we hit below zero many nights that winter.

The following spring I ventured down to Panama City Florida for Spring Break and got my first taste of blue green clear salt water and white sandy beaches. I knew then at some point in my life that beaches like this should be part of my life.

In two weeks to the day I make my annual pilgrimage to my favorite island of St Croix for an early peek of warm weather. I mentally tell myself on the return that that spring is only 6 weeks away. That usually ends up being a lie.

This year we are staying at a villa that frankly is the place that vacation postcards are made of. This house is about 6,000 square feet under roof on the side of a cliff overlooking the south shore of the island. One level down is an expansive pool perched out from the hillside. There is as much outdoor living as there is indoor living.     

There is only one house above us and that house belongs to The Contessa.

Today while on the road to Georgia I’ll day dream about the trip.

Oh the anticipation. 

My Life is Good Too

Ahhh, here a sit on a nice frosty morn (we have frosty morns in Dixie) sipping a cup of Ned Chambers’s coffee. No, I think it is Tim Horton coffee. Anyway it’s good.   

Last night wasn’t so good. I’ll keep this non detailed and simple, lets say about 2:39 AM I woke up with the poking of some internal brain alarm that something was bodily wrong.

I could hear noises coming from my abdomen that sounded like a cluster climax at a whale orgy.

About an hour later I settled back into my bed thinking about how wonderful my brain is. Gigi would have killed me if my brain hadn’t gone, “Dude! Wake up! You are about to **** your pants!”

I thanked my brain, for this waking alarm tonight along with making me breathe while I sleep, beating my heart, and all the other cool stiff my brain does on my behalf while I’m in dream land being fully entertained by my fantasy brain.

Life is good…sorry to steal your tag Terri

Ice Breaking Creek Monsters

I let the dogs out early this morning. It was very dark and very cold. A few moments later I rolled the garbage out to the curb and I could hear many little feet breaking the ice in our creek. When the dogs came back in all of their paws were dry. I wonder who was ice breaking in our creek.

My assistant came in the office this morning and asked if I ran into any black guys this morning. I was confused and thought she was setting up a joke. She actually was asking if I ran into any black ice. I have a hard time with a Chicago accent sometimes.

On the way to work a woman was walking down the sidewalk swinging her arms wildly. I actually thought she might slap my Jeep.

 Michael and Terry plan on visiting us in May. I was thinking how much I would like for them to experience Southport and I got to thinking. I must have spent a total of three weeks down there this summer and not a friend to show for it. People down there are very stand offish.

On the other hand folks in St Croix are very friendly. I could actually stay more occupied with friends and acquaintances on that island than I could in Southport.  

Southport is a quaint fishing village reminiscent of some New England coastal town. Visit for the ambiance and not for the people you’ll meet.

St Croix is quintessential Caribbean and has friendly people.    

Too Fun to Pass Up

The Interview

Five questions from Ali.

1. Twenty-five years ago, did you ever imagine your life being as it is now? North Carolina, the job you have, working for yourself, lovely Gigi, 5 dogs, 2 horses, 1 cat, and 1 bird, etc.

No. My life is not at all what I thought it would be. I pictured me living in the city with a cat, dog and two kids working some job I hated waiting to retire like most people. Isn’t that the way life is supposed to be?

We never did have kids and I am completely satisfied with that decision. We chose not to have children.  

I wasn’t a huge animal lover but became one. Animals melt my heart. I love dogs especially.

I certainly didn’t ever expect to live in the country on 8 acres. I told Gigi I would give it a year and I have been out here 20 years. 

I like my work and hope to work until no one wants to talk to an old codger. 

2. If you could have one superpower, what would it be? And what would your superhero name be?

This is easy. My name would be Wreggie Legend and I would fly like a jet.

3. What's one thing Gigi does for you (excluding anything sexual - let's keep it PG here, shall we? lol) that makes you love her the way you do?

Gigi makes me laugh and that is a wonderful thing.

I watch her sleep some nights and think about how much I love her. We are very good friends. We have a lot of water over the dam together and that means a lot. I think most people give up too easily on a relationship. 

We have reinvented ourselves and fallen in love with the new people we have become. I loved Gigi in her early twenties but wasn’t a big fan of Gigi in her mid to late 20’s.  30’s Gigi was different altogether and I am glad I stuck around. 40’s Gigi has been a hoot. 

4. If you had to choose between never watching an NFL game ever again, or not going to St. Croix to visit for three years, which would you pick?

This is not a fair question. It’s like asking a parent, “Who do you love better…little Wreggie or little Gigi?”

I have an addictive personality so I could make the decision and substitute a new addiction.

I love NFL football on many levels but it is just a game. I didn’t really mean that but it is a game.

St Croix is a place where my soul is at peace, plus and most importantly I have dear friends there. I have a bond with the sea there. My eyes are treated to the best sights there. I never get tired driving around the same little island. The sight of the ocean with it sparkling blue water and white puffy clouds in the sky never bore me. The thick accents warm my heart and the attitudes about what is important reset my priorities every time I visit.

It would be truly painful to give up NFL but I would.

From your question I think I could read about it and follow the season in print. Just I would be banned from watching, listening or attending games. 

5. What's the weirdest thing you've ever heard about Canadians? True or untrue.

I actually had very few preconceived ideas about Canadians except I knew a lot of them were white and liked hockey. I was right so far. True.  

The only rules are that you have to link back to the original post and you have to put these rules in your post:

"Want to be part of it? Follow these instructions:
1. Leave me a comment saying, "Interview me."
2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions." 

This and That.....

I feel like Crabby Appleton this morning. We have snow and I’m tossing deicer everywhere. I don’t think it will be a bad one, but Duke and Abby hate slick surfaces so that’s why I’m tossing the deicer on the deck.

Today I’ll have to endure the insults of all my northern friends talking about how it snowed this much in their bathroom back up in Turnbuckle, Montana. I don’t care and I don’t believe you. I see the news where Yankee folks are wrecking your cars in the snow just like us and hanging out in airports pining about this and that because of snow. Bullshit! Snow is snow and it is cold and slick where ever it falls.

I have noticed from observing Facebook and your blogs that a lot of you people are over achievers out there and you’re making me look bad. For goodness sakes would you just sit down and sulk all winter like I do?  

We pulled the mission to South Georgia today and have rescheduled the trip for Saturday. Good. I would rather drive my pickup for that long of trip.

I have settled with Allstate for the break-in from the 10th.

Did you know a GPS is not covered? She explained to me twice that it was because it was powered by the car and it was for navigational purposes only.

“Yes, but it was stolen like my other stuff.”

“Yes sir but again because it was powered by the car and it was for navigational purposes only it is excluded.”


Are We Peaking Yet?

Today is a holiday for me. I’ll go into work casually dressed and catch up on some paperwork. Then I’ll get in a workout, lunch, nap and relax.

Tomorrow I take the FIL to South Georgia to spend time with his son until the sun burns out.

I was planning to rent a car because the truck is getting a two week door lock overhaul but decided I’d keep the $200 in my pocket and drive the Jeep instead.

It will be fun going down I-95 in a high geared glorified go-cart with a tent for a roof.

I’m kind of squeamish about car companies anyway after the Enterprise affair last summer. I don’t trust a car company as far as I can throw them. They lie about rates and deals and bullshit on you reservation. You never know what kind of car you are actually getting. So $69 a day for an economy car times two plus $42 in taxes will be spent in St Croix in a few weeks thank you. 

Martin Luther King Eve

It is common knowledge that Bill Clinton was America’s first black President. This coming Tuesday we will inaugurate America’s first openly black president.

I think now would be a good time to reflect on the struggles of American blacks.

Please enjoy the following documentary that portrays the struggle in the late 1950’s.   

Angry Wreggie

I was angry far too much this week with far too many people. Basically I encountered too many bottleneck personality types. These people feel empowered to affect one’s life because the opportunity presents itself and for a brief moment they can force attention and feel the power for themselves just because they can.

An example….I have a supervisor who actually works for me because I pay them to supervise me. The reason I have this relationship is I must be squeaky clean in my business dealings to avoid threats from the feds and end up in prison.

Sidebar: Life has become so complex at times that white collar prison seems like a good escape. As I understand I would get a free place to stay, three hot meals, my own bed, free medical and none of the worries of the outside world like paying taxes, mortgages etc. In 25 years I’ll have to pay for this service except they call it assisted living.

So with my supervisor I can literally tell them to kiss my ass and not risk losing my job. However they can and do bottleneck my business from time to time just because they can whether I tell them to kiss my ass or not.   

Yesterday I had a transaction put on hold that represented as much compensation to me as the majority of folks make in a year. The business was held up on a technicality and this asshole was threatening to bust my deal because he could. Can feel some tension building here?

I lashed out very angrily and very logically pointing out the stupidity of his logic and called his stupidity out to his supervisor who works for me as well. Now I am the one empowered and have him by the balls because his supervisor sees the stupidity of the artificial logjam created by ass brains.

My deal goes through and I am left with a headache. This fight could have been avoided but ass lips wanted to flex his power. Plus and more importantly I have lost all respect for the guy.

Another encounter was with the car repair company. I took my truck to Sterling Auto Body (owned by Allstate) last Tuesday for repairs from my break-in.  They just got around to ordering parts yesterday and said the parts should be in by Tuesday of next week. Then it would be a 3 day job putting in a new door lock, and new cup holders so don’t expect my truck back until the end of next week.

I told them I was pretty sure I could install the lock with my butt cheeks alone in one day but they assured me that my door needed painting and this would take the bulk of the time.  

So why are you guys impounding my truck for a week? This makes no sense to me. Oh…I remember…empowerment because they can and apparently I have let them because I am fighting on too many fronts this week.

Logic please people….not stupidity.       

I need a vacation.   

Chemical Wreggie

I just learned something.

There is a phenomenon known as “corked wine” where a natural cork has infected the wine with a chemical that renders the wine undrinkable. The wine becomes smoky tasting and smelly and you have to pour it down the sink.

This has happed to me numerous times at home and even at fine restaurants.

What I learned is the culprit molecule in infected corks, 2,4,6-trichloroanisole, is chemically similar to polyethylene and sticks to plastic. So you can take your skanky wine and pour it in a bowl with some plastic wrap and this should save your wine by removing the chemical.

Pretty cool huh? 

Oh....see why I go to this place in the winter? Look below. 

I Hope I'm in Good Hands

Powerball Lottery is up to 165 million dollars. I love to daydream (Buckwheat) about winning that jackpot even though I didn’t buy a ticket for last night’s drawing. Hey…I saved a dollar!

My truck break in is being handled by my insurance company in two separate ways. The truck damage is being fixed under the car policy and the contents are being covered under home owners.

It was explained to me that anything installed and bolted down is considered truck and anything that can be picked up is considered an extension of your home.

That’s why I bought a truck safe the other day that bolts down so the next time they steal my shit it will give them a fit and it will be covered under my auto policy because they treat you much nicer than home owners.

When I called the auto section of Allstate the other day they were all apologetic saying, “Mr. Wreggie, we are so sorry. Don’t worry you have a zero deductable and we’ll pay the whole tab. Just take you car to XYZ (owned by Allstate) and we’ll have you good as new in no time.”

When I called the home owners section of Allstate I was treated like a thief. “Mr. Wreggie, do you have any receipts?”

“Well, I bought that gun years ago from an individual.”

“Yes or no…do you have receipts.”   

I could see where the tone of this interrogation was going so I grunted out brief answers to her questions.

“Why did you have a gun in the truck?”

“So I could shoot people.”

“Why did you have a TV in the truck? Why did you have a GPS?”

I’m thinking where is the love I felt from the auto folks.

Hopefully I’ll have the truck back tomorrow and eventually get a check for the contents.

I replaced the GPS yesterday. I missed that little guy talking to me all the time. 

Oh They Went Down in Case you Doubted

About a week ago my credit card charge from Direct TV was reversed when the card company discovered how Direct TV operated without authority in taking money from my account. Since then I was getting nightly calls from Direct TV demanding I pay the balance.

Yesterday I sent Direct TV this email:

Direct TV fraudulently, illegally and without cause charged my credit card for equipment I never ordered and I was told to discard the equipment by Direct TV.

Upon discovery of the abuse my credit card company reversed the charge because Direct TV violated terms of agreement and Direct TV admitted to me and the card company that yes they instructed me to discard their equipment on October 29th 2008.

Now Direct TV is calling me to collect money I do not owe them. How can we get this stopped?

Is there someone in NC acting as agent for Direct TV that I can have a warrant served if I

 decide to file a law suit? I need and address and name.

I got a call last night from a very sober and polite person apologizing from Direct TV with a promise to restore their ill gotten gains to my account now. Then the following email came in:

Confirmation: DIRECTV® Service Credit

Acct # blablabla

This email confirms that a credit of $240.00 has been applied to your DIRECTV account.

We recommend that you keep a copy of this e-mail for your records.

Victory! Sweet victory. 

Special bonus post: One of my friends insists I was copying a Star Wars character to get sympathy.  

Idiosyncrasies of Being Me

One of the idiosyncrasies of being me is I have been set up in the same house for 20 years this month, married to the same woman for 30 years this year, and have been doing the same job/industry for 25 years this year.

And so having a pair of underwear in my drawer with advanced age and loss of function is not out of the question.

Yesterday I casually picked out a pair of boxers put them on and the elastic felt like it may be giving out. I was in a hurry and finished dressing and went on to work.

What I discovered by 9 AM is the elastic had dry rotted and was rendered useless. By 10 AM I had underwear hanging around my knees and an important meeting pending at 11 AM. By 11 AM I was technically commando with my knees tied together.

I could barely walk but I have my standards and I felt it was wrong to toss the underwear at work.

Finally I tossed the underwear at 1PM. It felt wrong being momentarily naked so to speak in my office yet I was liberated.

I wonder what house cleaning thought when they emptied my trash can?  

Bojangles Famous Chicken and Buscuits

After the game I was Jonesing for some chicken wings and a diet Coke so I stopped by Bojangles, which is a regional chain of Cajun fried chicken and biscuits.

I pulled up to the drive thru and ordered some wings and she said, “Sir we don’t have chicken after 10 PM”.

Well blow me down, imagine a chicken place that is open but doesn’t serve chicken. I’m interested in seeing just how this business model works long term. 

I just know it was Dick Chaney's fault that my car was broken in to....damn Halliburton. Halliburton

Oh Well

What was I thinking? A nut sack from a bovine and cheap beer was going to win the game?  Geese ….the Panthers sucked and lost. And especially bad was how they imploded on national TV against the Arizona Cardinals of all teams.

Oh…and my truck was broken in to for the 4th time. Joy.

The bastards stole my GPS, TV, hand gun and misalanous shit that belonged to me.

When I called the cops they said I shouldn’t leave things in my car. I said I am not accustomed to bringing my GPS and gun into the stadium.

I swear Charlotte has the crime rate of a third world country. I just know it was Dick Chaney and Halliburton.

The Playoffs

Today we have a NFL Divisional Championship game between the Carolina Panthers and the Arizona Cardinals right here in my home town.

I have tickets and I am stoked as you would expect; but when you consider the seriousness of the event its not all fun and games.

First we expect cold rain. This means shelters will have to be erected for the tailgate and rain ponchos secured for the game. I have two 10X10 free standing shelters that I’ll bind together to make a nice dry room.

It is an 8 PM game and it will be dark so a generator and light is in order. I bought a 500 watt halogen light and already have a 2000 watt generator. I think the light will be placed under the truck for a nice bright ground effect lighting.

I have music; forty high energy songs mostly of the 80’s vintage on my ipod playlist with an amplified player that will invoke the NFL stadium experience. 

There will be a televised 4 PM AFC game so a TV will need to be there. Satellite or antenna? I think the transmitter for CBS is 21.2 miles from the tailgate so an antenna will do. I bought a new set of rabbit ears yesterday.

Then there are special playoff customs reserved for these special home games.

We have a good luck buffalo scrotum that is used only for playoffs. My pal Bruce has been custodian of this scrotum since we last went to the playoffs. He said he couldn’t find the scrotum the other day. How do you loose a buffalo scrotum?  I told him not to worry; we could cut his scrotum off and start a new custom if he can’t find it.

Special lucky playoff beer is imported for the event. We always get Old Style beer from Chicago for playoff games. Old Style is a blue collar low end beer served at Wrigley Field in Chicago. This beer invokes the positive playoff spirits from playoffs past. Fortunately I have 30 cans ready for consumption.   

Finally the regular season customs must be preserved which means brats and shrimp will be served.

I think I am ready, I hope the Panthers are. 

Bad Times Ah Coming....

I stopped by Wal-Mart yesterday morning on my way to work. I needed some C batteries for a new dog toenail grinder that we own and I figured I might as well treat myself to the cheapest possible batteries on the planet. C batteries are not a size we inventory in the Wreggie household.

I am not a big fan of Wal-Mart. The stores are too big, too crowded, most of the employees are not helpful, but I will shop there if I need a commodity type item because they are cheap.

What shocked me when I walked in Wal-Mart was the sparkling cleanliness of the store.  It was very noticeable. The floor was shiny, the carpet clean and one well dressed elderly greeter beckoned me in.

To the right was a well stocked display of Christmas Decorations marked down to .75 cents each but apparently no takers.

I looked around and there were no customers, just employees stocking shelves. All the shelves were fully stocked and aligned perfectly. It looked like they were about to do a photo shoot for the Wal-Mart annual report.

It’s very strange…when Americans turn off the spending spigot; retail freezes up even at Wal-Mart. I have never witnessed such frugality in my lifetime.

More bad times are coming I suppose.   

To Know Me...

To know me is to realize I am all about warm weather, good friends, family, pets, good food, social gatherings, and belly laughs. Yes, I guess I am really that shallow.

Rather juvenile you might think for a 52 year old man.

I swore off taking life too serious after two life changing events in my life.

One life changing event was a death bed conversation with my father. He recounted his regrets from working too much and taking that work too seriously when he should have spent that time enjoying life. It was time spent that he’ll never be able to get back and he was sad to think about the time he wasted on the nonsense of work stress.   

The second life changing event a few years later was when my workaholic ass was literally thrown out from a job that I put my life and soul in to.  I was the number one producer in an office and let’s just say I was cocky as hell and was fired for insubordination. I was the Pac Man Jones and Terrell Owens of my office.

To be on top of the corporate ladder one day and then be working from my dining room the next made me redefine my vulnerability.

I decided from that day forward that I would be self employed with emphasis on self.  I would enjoy more the fruits of my labor and not count on enjoying life one day in the future when I was “retired”. I would judge my success by the freedom I have rather than the wealth I accumulate. 

Follow Ups

Remember last year when I mailed a package to my friends 

Michael and Terry down in St Croix and it ended up in the British Virgin Islands instead of US? Well I mailed them a Christmas gift last December 19, 2008 and it went from Colorado to New Jersey where it sits in some mail bin. The postal service tells me everything is fine as long as they can locate the package. I think they may be missing the point…they are supposed to deliver the package.

I bought a gas Weber Q grill off of Ebay and it was shipped the Friday after Christmas. It appears to be lost for sure in the mail system.

Yesterday on the way to the post office to ship yet another package to paradise I was interrupted by a phone call from the credit card company who is dead to me….Us Airways MasterCard.  

“Mr. Wreggie, would you mind if we all conference on the phone while we try to work out this dispute with Direct TV?’

“Oh sure that would be fine”, after I checked the battery on my phone and pulled over in my truck turning on the emergency flashers.

The lady at MasterCard was sure that I had not expressed myself logically enough to Direct TV in order to get my money back. I explained everything and Direct TV explained that yes they told me to throw away the receiver but later asked me to mail it in after I threw it away which was impossible so they are charging me $256 for following instructions….and there is nothing they can do about it.

Finally after an hour the lady at dead to me MasterCard said to Direct TV, “You people are crazy, You have the worst customer service I have ever seen. You were not authorized to take Mr. Wreggie’s money.”   

And Direct TV said, “Sorry, there is nothing we can do.”

The MasterCard lady said she will get me the $256 back legally because basically they stole it and they strongly discourage stealing from their merchants.

I have a feeling this is not over.

January Joys

What an adventure the past week has been for me. I think I am about back to normal as I get. I started new meds last night and slept like a baby.

Now that we are in the filet of winter it is time to turn thoughts to all the great things that January brings.

Let’s see. MLK day is around the corner and that is always…you know….a blast.

What else…..oh, it will begin ever so slightly having a wee bit more daylight and that is a good thing.

Then there is always plenty of oxygen, gravity and water in January, can’t live without that stuff.   

Oh! The seed catalogs come out soon, now that’s a thriller. 

What a Long Strange Trip

Okay mothers and fathers gather round your children to see what drugs can do to a man. This photo is me in the hospital yesterday having a severe reaction to an ace inhibitor drug I have taken for high blood pressure for over two months.

I swear this is untouched by photo shop or some morphing software. This is me around 1 PM yesterday.

Yesterday I woke up and my gums and teeth were numb. In a few minutes my lips began to swell.

I drove to the same ER I went to 3 weeks ago to get my thumb sewed up and they admitted me immediately.

The attending physician looked at my chart and immediately recognized what was going on. He praised me for coming in because this could be life threatening unless we began treatment now.

I was given intravenous doses of steroids, Benadryl and pepsid, along with an adrenalin chaser. All this every six hours until noon today.

My face has shrunk to just plumpness and I felt fine the whole time except for the Benadryl buzzes and followed by a brief power nap.

Live and learn. 

A friend just sent his idea in. 

Just Sharing What My Mind Sees

I had a very fitful evening trying to go to bed but it made for some awesome dreams.

I guess the combination of cough syrup, Vicks vapor rub, and a nausea pill made drifting off to a very deep sleep possible.

Then I was standing on the beach just off of Buck Island where I was explaining to Michael how I would like a modified Viking Funeral. Take my cremated remains and set them in an eco-friendly floating device to be set ablaze to float out to the sea.

Michael was about to ask some questions when the night sky was lit up by a Shuttle launch that I would guess was 5 miles away. We saw the rocket stage overhead and the solid booster came tumbling down over head all in slow motion.

It was surreal but so pleasant to watch and not a sound was heard from the rocket.  

I’ll try to come up with the exact recipe of this concoction if anyone one is interested because it makes for some damn good dreams. 


I would like to share with my non southern friends some of the New Years day traditions taught to me as a child by my parents which I faithfully carry out to this day. I dare say that my generation will be the last for this nonsense but I’ll do these things until I die every New Years day.

One must not do any wash. I don’t know why except it can bring bad luck throughout the year and Gigi is fine with this rule.  

One must not take out any ashes. You can clean your fireplace but it is bad luck to remove the ashes from your house.

Eat plenty of collard greens to have money in the New Year. Collards were the only “green” food around this time of year 100 plus years ago. Traditionally they were eaten by poor whites and blacks but worked their way into mainstream back in the 1940’s and 1950’s.

Eat pork for prosperity in the coming year. We used to eat hog jowls when I was a child but it is darn near impossible to find them anymore. A ruling was made decades ago by my mother that we could substitute any pork and so we do. Usually ham or pork chops.  

Eat black eye peas for good luck. Heck we eat them most any time. This pea has its roots from Africa.  

And finally we eat sweet potatoes mainly because they go so good with the above.

So remember, you can be assured of what I am eating every New Years supper for years to come. 

This is how collards come from the grocery store tied with a rubber band.

Collards that have been stalked or veins removed from the leaves.

Collards ready to steam and cook.