Friday, December 28, 2012

Happy birthday to my uncle Chris

Post Cards Home (A Retrospective)


Celebrating Five Years of Post Cards

From
Uncle Don Cards

 Division Of Frost Lake Photography
The new way to make a photo album: photo books by Shutterfly.

Wherever you are today, I hope that you have something to celebrate! 

Don Bergquist - December 28, 2012 - Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Holiday Travel


I cannot believe I have been in Minnesota a week already! HOW could this be possible!? Can a surfeit of cards, games, and food – taken in the presence of friends and family, really constrict time so markedly as to make an entire week disappear that quickly!?

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Boxing Day In Minnesota


Boxing Day

noun
(in Britain) the first weekday after Christmas, when Christmas gifts orboxes are given to employees, letter carriers, etc.
Origin:
1825–35

Karma

Disclaimer:

In the interest of complete clarity – I must admit that this post is being delayed until after Christmas so as not to spoil the surprise gift mentioned below. This was written on the morning of December 16, 2012 and is an accurate depiction of actual events.

Dictionary.com defines karma like this:

kar•ma   [kahr-muh]

noun

1.       Hinduism, Buddhism. action, seen as bringing upon oneself inevitable results, good or bad, either inthis life or in a reincarnation: in Hinduism one of the means of reaching Brahman. Compare bhakti ( def 1 ) , jnana.
Boxing Day

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!


Merry Christmas
&
Happy New Year! 

Christmas Day


The gifts are all given; the mess has all been managed; and after all is said and done, what remains is the love the family has for each other to bask in. The glow from the heart out-warms the glow from the hearth.

Merry Christmas!

Christmas Day

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve


When we were children my siblings and I would eagerly await the arrival of Santa on Christmas Eve. As midnight neared Miami, the Bergquist children would eagerly await the mysterious multiplication of the mound of presents under the tree.
Christmas Eve
Happy birthday to my cousin Elizabeth
Happy birthday to my cousin Abigail

Sunday, December 23, 2012

The Vortex


I have yet to understand it; but this place, more than any other home I have ever spent significant time in, seem to emanate pure relaxation. There seems to be some vortex here that serves to suck the desire to do anything active out of one. Unless you bring work with you to do, it seems that the time of day has no meaning here.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

A Lovely Day Draws On


Santa’s Elves must have come along between the time I wrote that and the time I finished getting ready to head into town. Nearly everything is back in its place. The wrappings have all been tidied into their box in the corner of the office; the table as been reclaimed by Flo’s sewing. My step-mom, last seen wrapping-up-a-storm is nowhere to be seen. I hear snores emanating from other rooms, it is as if the previous flurry of activity was all a dream.

Three-Days-And-Counting

It looks as if one of Santa’s elves exploded in here! There are bows, bags, and gift wrap all over my dad’s office.

For weeks my step-mom has been putting aside things for wrapping. Gifts for cousins, siblings, in-laws, and assorted friends are strewn all over the room in various stages of decoration. A few stocking-stuffers that I had sent here to be wrapped are set to one side; they were sheathed in brightly colored paper earlier today.

We have boxes of ornaments off to one side, we’ll be trimming the tree in the living room a little later-on and then we can pile all the tinsel-covered packages around the base; the apparent aftermath of a tragic sleigh accident.

The mess in this room will be clear, the present strewn, tree-festooned corner of the living room will be all lovely for a few days and then the mess that I am surveying here will be a pale presage of the chaos that will be all over the living room. But what fun we will have on Christmas morning, sharing time with each other, like red-and-green pirates surveying the booty that Old St. Nick has left for us.

It truly is a magical time of the year – even if, it at times looks a bit like elf-barf!

Wherever you are today, I home your holiday prep is… uh…


 Don Bergquist – December 22, 2012 – Kensington, Minnesota, USA


Happy birthday to my cousin Rebecca

Friday, December 21, 2012

Busy Day (Part II)


Dad’s procedure went well! We are all relieved.

Busy Day


My folks were waiting when the shuttle arrived. I think I may have dropped off a couple times but I really got no significant sleep on the shuttle. We had a bite to eat and it occurred to me that the reason that I was so hungry was that other than a buttered and toasted roll in the Butt-Ugly morning before I had left for the airport, I had not had anything to eat all day. That Rueben was delicious!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Coffee ≠ Sleep


Once again I am led to the inescapable conclusion that I am no longer young. As if the creak in my bones that never used to be there, or the tendency to become upset with people doing patently stupid things – especially if they are young people – weren’t enough to tell me that I am no longer young, the fact that I am no longer impervious to pain and occasionally require sleep certainly clinches it.

Flying Coach

I am sitting on the plane in more layers than is absolutely necessary because all I three of the morning newscasts I watched this morning as I was getting ready to leave warned of the bitterly cold temperatures and suggested dressing in layers. Oh well, perhaps I will need these layers in Minnesota!

Departure


Well! THAT was fun!

It is a good thing that I was watching the news last night and was prepared for this morning. The weathercasts and traffic forecasts for this morning as well as the updates on two of the local channels, which I checked before I left, all called for it being a difficult time this morning.
Happy birthday to my friend Christine

Monday, December 17, 2012

Gun Rights


I was talking to a conservative friend of mine this weekend. This is a real right-wing "A Corporation Is A Person" Kool-Aid drinking republican. We were talking about last week's tragic events at the mall, at the school, at the mall again. There were three different incidents of gun violence and he was just sure that – as a bleeding-heart liberal – I would want to immediately ban all guns.
Wright Brother's Day

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Monday, November 19, 2012

Denial Personified


de·ni·al [dih-nahy-uhl]
noun
1. an assertion that something said, believed, alleged, etc. , is false: Despite his denials, we knew he had taken the purse. The politician issued a denial of his opponent's charges.
2. refusal to believe a doctrine, theory, or the like.
3. disbelief in the existence or reality of a thing.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

A Question Of Math


I am so glad that I have a DVR that allows me to back-up on live television. I was quite sure I had misunderstood that story this morning, but even on second hearing it was the same. Can you believe the unapologetic duplicity of the statements that Mr. Romney made to his supporters this week!? He seems to be completely unaware of how inanely disingenuous he is being.
America Recycles Day

Monday, November 12, 2012

Schadenfreude? Me!? Never!


scha·den·freu·de  [shahd-n-froi-duh]
noun
satisfaction or pleasure felt at someone else's misfortune.

Origin:
1890–95;  < German,  equivalent to Schaden  harm + Freude  joy
Happy birthday to my cousin Michael

Monday, November 05, 2012

Guy Fawkes Night

Something To Think About Tomorrow

"When the people fear their government, there is tyranny;
 when the government fears the people, there is liberty."

~ Thomas Jefferson

Guy Fawkes Day

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Partisans


par·ti·san [pahr-tuh-zuhn, -suhn; Brit. pahr-tuh-zan]
noun
1. an adherent or supporter of a person, group, party, or cause, especially a person who shows a biased, emotional allegiance…

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Pandering To The Lowest Common Denominator

There is an old adage which suggests that you should never try to teach a pig to sing; it accomplishes nothing and it annoys the pig. It is in this vein that I have given-up even trying to explain to people who keep quitting the party-line bull____ at me that they should try reading something more than a bumper sticker. There is nothing to gain from it.
Happy birthday to my friend Chris

Monday, October 15, 2012

Indian Summer

 -- Or --

We Ordered That Cold Snap To Let Mary Know She Had Been In Minnesota!

National Grouch Day

How Your News Is Completely Wrong


(Or At Least Out Of Date By The Time You Get It)

There was a story on the local news this morning that was humorous in that the moment I heard it, I knew it was wrong. I knew this not because I had inside info about the story itself or any particular interest in whether it was right or wrong, but because I understood that simply by reporting the story the media were changing it. This, in turn, I understood because I know how things work.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Friday, October 05, 2012

An Open Letter To Mitt Romney And His Followers


In my daily news review online and on the air I saw a story that absolutely incensed me! Anyone who can still hold onto the belief that the right is really standing-up for the little guy read on.

Mr. Romney:

If you are serious about being concerned about the small businesses of America, I do believe you owe it to one of them that you have injured some consideration. You may not have thought that your campaign's attempt to use a small business as a backdrop would have the unintended consequence of threats of violence and boycott, but you certainly should have. How could you not have known that by allowing the news a local restaurant didn’t want to be a backdrop for your campaign could have had real consequences?

Have you not been watching the news? Did you not know that nearly half the country would never consider voting for you (what was that figure, 47%? I'd have to look it up…) while nearly half the country would never consider voting for your opponent? Can you not see how vitriolic the rhetoric from BOTH sides has gotten? Are you living on another planet?

You may not have personally released the fact that Rosa Linda's restaurant didn't want you interrupting their lunchtime service, but surely you have heard the news that Oscar Aguirre and his family have suffered death threats. Surely you have heard that their restaurant has been hit by a threatened boycott. Surely you must be able to see the causal relationship between the fact that the news that your campaign approached and was refused by a local small business and this mess. Surely! Aren't you the "Pro-Small Business" candidate!?

If you don't owe this man compassion because your campaign has caused this mess, do you not owe it to him as a fellow Mormon? Your campaign certainly seems to have assumed he would have been amenable to closing his business for your benefit because he shares a faith with you… You seem to put great value on your faith, but if you could allow this to happen to a member of your own church, I shudder to think what you will allow to happen to those of us who don't have any connection to you other than holding a passport from the same country.

Was your performance on Wednesday, just that – a performance? Do you really care so little for other people that you can allow this to happen without at least telling your supporters to stop? They are after all, attacking this small business for no other reason than that they happened to turn down your request to allow them to be used to further your political ambitions! The are attacking this family on your behalf – misguided as I hope that they are; they are doing this FOR YOU!

I sit here listening to the incessant ads that you and your supporters are running here in Colorado. You repeatedly claim that you "…care about poor and middle class families." You keep claiming that you want to be the president for "100%" of America. Is it just that the business your followers are threatening is too small a percentage to be counted part of that 100%?

Wherever you are today, Mr. Romney, I hope that you will do what is right – speak to your supporters – tell them that what they are doing to Rosa Linda's and its owners is in opposition to what you claim to stand for!

Don Bergquist – October 05, 2012 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Happy anniversary to Shawn & Nancy
Happy anniversary to Michelle & Michael
Happy birthday to my brother Charles

Monday, October 01, 2012

Skin In The Game


 To have skin in the game is to be invested in the scheme, or to have money at stake in some endeavor; to have a vested interest in some outcome. I bring this up because I found it to be an interesting choice of idioms for Chris Christie to be tossing about yesterday on all the chat shows. The idiom is derived from the slang "Skin" meaning "Dollar Bill."
Happy birthday to my cousin Sheila

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Disingenuous

dis•in•gen•u•ous
   [dis-in-jen-yoo-uhs]

adjective
lacking in frankness, candor, or sincerity; falsely or hypocriticallyingenuous;  insincere: Her excuse was rather disingenuous.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Puh-leeeese!


Admittedly, I have yet to see the speech; I just got back from evening meetings and have missed the coverage until now. But they are interviewing some of the most insipid voters that it has ever been my displeasure to watch.
Woman's Suffrage Granted In the USA
Happy birthday to my friend Sam

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Economic Whiz-Kid?


I have just finished watching the Republican Nominee for Vice-President speak. If you will allow me, for the moment to ignore the fact that he repeated the same hyperbole and misrepresentations that his party has been trying for MONTHS now, I would like to ask: What makes people say that he is such an economic whiz-kid?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Short On Details


I have to admit, I could not really stand watching the RNC Convention for more than a few minutes at a time, but I did read a number of reports on it this morning, and from what I saw and what I have read, there seems to be a theme developing: "President bad – Romney good."
Happy birthday to my friend Becky

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Tech


On my first trip to Australia, a friend of mine recommended a piece of tech kit that I had to have the moment I saw it! I had a tablet, but this tablet was like none I had ever seen…
National Lasagna Day

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Slam?

No! It can’t be! The Olympics have been in the works for years! Their solute to the NHS seems calculated to point-out that the US is the only major industrialized nation that doesn’t care for all its citizens when they are sick!

mf healthcaremap p.jpg
From Wikimedia via The Atlantic

Friday, July 27, 2012

Faith-Politics/Politics-Faith


What an interesting world we live in. You have the right to believe in whatever you want to. There is (at least in theory) in this country a freedom of religion that allows you to believe anything you want. No matter what crazy bat-shit thing you take into your head, it is theoretically your right to believe it.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Gymnastics


The Olympics Opening Ceremonies are not until tomorrow night and already the US has a promising contender in Gymnastics: Willard “Mitt” Romney is flipping and spinning with the best of them over there in London!
All-Or-Nothing Day

Monday, July 23, 2012

Monday, Monday

How did I get so accustomed to the time so quickly!? It has been five days since I had to count on the alarm waking me up. I do not get it!
Happy birthday to my friend Tena

Sunday, July 22, 2012

It’s A Lovely Weekend

Not everything is news and politics this weekend! Saturday was a lovely day, starting with the thunderstorm that watered the newly mown lawns. We had breakfast and coffee followed by cards and conversation. Yes, it was a lovely morning.

Parents' Day
Happy birthday to my friend Stacy

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Crackpots


I think I have seen this movie before:

Sen. John Yerkes Iselin: No evasions, Mister Secretary, no evasions if you please. 
Secretary of Defense: Evasions? What the hell are you talking about? 
Secretary of Defense: [whispering to Marco] What the hell is this nonsense? 
Marco: [covering the microphones] Mister Secretary, I'm kind of new at this job, but I don't think it's good public relations to speak that way to a US Senator, even if he is an idiot. 
Sen. John Yerkes Iselin: I am United States Senator John Yerkes Iselin, and I have here a list of two hundred seven persons who are known by the Secretary of Defense as being members of the Communist Party! 
Secretary of Defense: [amid shocked reaction from the crowd] What? 
Sen. John Yerkes Iselin: Who nevertheless are still shaping the policy of the Defense Department! 
Secretary of Defense: Senator who? 
Sen. John Yerkes Iselin: I demand an answer, Mister Secretary! There will be no covering up, sir! No covering up! 
Secretary of Defense: How did you get in here in the first place? 

Friday, July 20, 2012

John Donne Is Anti-Business (And Anti-Island!)


In my continuing series of my predicting the news, I have the following news flash, in front of a roaring crowd of teenagers forced to read poetry, Willard “Mitt” Romney declared that John Donne is out-of-touch and anti-business.

Tragic News


Thanks for people who have been emailing me this morning. My home is clear the other side of town from the movie theatre where the shooting took place and I am not there anyway. I am in Minnesota with my folks this week.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

“…Its Founding Document!?”


Regardless of what you think of his politics, you have to wonder about his grasp on history!

Mr. Willard “Mitt” Romney a crowd of TEA Party conservatives the type of red-meat drivel they gobble-up without a care as to its veracity yesterday in Pennsylvania. The disturbing thing is that neither he nor his audience seems to care whether his comments are accurate. The ovation-inducing lines were as follows:

“Let’s stop and think about the system of government and what it tells us in our founding document, the Declaration of Independence. It does not say that the government gave us our rights. It says that God gave us our rights. They came with us not with Government.”

Despite the theological problems here (does he really believe that our rights were given to us by a 6’4” white man living on a planet called “Kobol?” Or is he saying that some other god – the God of your personal choice – gave you the rights?); there is a fundamental (rather than fundamentalist) issue with this statement.
Happy birthday to my friend Britany

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Oh, My God! My Dog’s A Freak!


Whoosh! There it goes again, that streak of white shooting past my window! Well, mostly white with a bit of black on either end! What the… There it goes again! Ah!

National Hot Dog Day

Monday, July 16, 2012

Busy Week Ahead


It has been a busy weekend and it is going to be an even busier week!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Arrival


What a great drive! The roads this morning were amazingly quiet.

Sunrise



It is moments like this that make the travel the thrill it is. There is nothing quite like the experience of travelling along and being suddenly surprised with the sight of a beautiful sunrise.

Alarm Clock? What Alarm Clock!?


What a difference a sign makes! It is embarrassing; what with the number of nights I spend on the road and the number of times I have made this trip; that a little think like not seeing the sign would make such a difference! The fact that that sign is on the interstate and is at a point east of where I left the interstate is beside the point. I should have remembered it was there and that I would have seen it by now had I not diverged from my usual routes yesterday!
Happy birthday to my friend Phil
Happy birthday to my friend Michael
Happy birthday to my friend David
Happy birthday to my cousin Nick

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Stopping For The Night


Saga is snoring at the foot of the bed in the hotel. It must be tiring riding around in the kennel all day, occasionally whinging; as if asking me when it will be time to stop. Perhaps this is a dogs way of repeating “Are we there yet!?”

The Badlands


I assume that I must be in the Badlands National Park. If I am not, then I am on the fringes thereof. The craggy mesas to the east and west of the road and the dry, colorful valley floor are dead giveaways.

The Road Less Traveled By

What a gorgeous day for driving; even if I have very little idea of where, exactly I am!

Departure


Perhaps it is just that I am getting older, but I no longer am so hot and bothered about what time I get rolling when I leave on a trip. There was a time that if I had found myself still sitting here in Lakewood at five in the morning on departure day I would have been beside myself for not having left “on time”

Happy birthday to my friend Ian

Friday, July 13, 2012

Being Productive


What a productive day – so far! It is early afternoon and I have just returned home from the office. Early in – early out, lots done in between! It sort of make the day productive… at least it makes it seem productive!

Sunday, July 08, 2012

1.65”

More than an inch-and-a-half of rain fell into my rain gauge this weekend. It is NICE to have the water! This is more rain than we had for the entire month of June. The atmosphere is absolutely dripping out of the sky this morning. It is nice and cool, and dark.


Happy birthday to my friend Pat
Happy birthday to my friend Cindy
Happy birthday to my friend Cathy

Monday, July 02, 2012

Politics As Usual


How did it degenerate to this point? I used to be amused by it, but it has worn a bit thin.
Happy birthday to my friend Tonina

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Monday, June 25, 2012

Monday, June 18, 2012

Fathers’ Day Memories: Part III ~ …And Now My Version


As a sort-of homage to my Dad for Fathers’ Day, I have been presenting you with a story that is well known and well loved in my family since Saturday. On Saturday I started by giving the background and then yesterday I related the events of the story to you as Dad insists they actually happened.

But every story has two sides and each person has their own memory of events. Yesterday as is fitting for Fathers' Day, I related the story as I have heard it related MANY times by my Dad.

What follows is my recollection of the way it REALLY happened. While the key points are more-or-less the same, I think you will spot that Dad and I differ in some subtle ways that don’t really change the story that much. See if you can spot the differences…
Toast To Excess: It's National Splurge Day
Toast To Excess: It's National Splurge Day

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Fathers’ Day Memories: Part II ~ Dad Gets His Say

 Yesterday I began a story that I am offering as my homage to my father on Fathers’ Day. This story is a completely true story and is much loved and well traveled within my family. It has been around forever – well, since 1966 when it actually happened – and has suffered none in the retelling over the years.

Well, at least it has not aged badly. The thing is that my father and I differ greatly in a few of the key details of the story and in an attempt at fairness; I am going to present the story in the way that both of us remember it. In deference to my father, I am starting with his version. It is only right, given the day and all…

As you will recall from yesterday’s post, it is 1966 and my Mom, siblings, and pet daschund have all left for Minnesota and Dad and I are following a week later.
Father's Day

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Fathers’ Day Memories: Part I ~ Introduction


If it is true that your early, formative years, define who you are for life, then I am in big trouble! I was a horrible kid. There is a specific strip from the old Bill Watterson comic strip Calvin and Hobbes that I have always remembered because it reminded me of myself as a kid. It shows the father in the strip walking out the door for work and getting in the car while the kid (Calvin) calls after him telling his dad all the fun things that he could be doing if he didn’t have t go to work. The father, all the while getting visible depressed. The strip ends with Calvin watching his dad drive off for the city in a foul mood and admitting “I’d hate to have a kid like me!”
Fudge Day

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

New Toys!

One of the few things I didn't like about traveling with my tablet was that there was no EASY way to keep up with my blog. I am trying-out the new Android Blogger app. It has a fell shortcomings that I have encountered thus far; it cannot (apparently) schedule for future posting. I have also read that it doesn't like to post articles with pictures. THAT would be a showstopper for me!

Wherever you are today I hope that you have some cool new toys to play with!

Don Bergquist - June 12, 2012 - Lakewood, Colorado, USA


Red Rose Day

Saturday, June 02, 2012

Public Service


I have great respect for anyone who willingly takes on a role of public service. It is a thankless job that puts you under a great deal of stress and has very little pay-off.

A Lovely Weekend Day

While walking the dog this morning, I noticed that the prairie dogs were unusually active. No wonder, it is a lovely day and they were out there just reveling in the lovely day that we are having here in Lakewood!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Travelogue Minnesota: Home Again


Three words explain it all: “LOTS TO DO!!!“
Learn About Cmposting Day