Hi,

Holy cow, it’s been a week.  World War II started when Germany invaded Poland in 1939, the Titanic was discovered in 1985, Rocky Marciano’s birth anniversary (1923), it is the anniversary of the Soviets shooting down Korean Air Lines flight 007 after straying over Soviet territory killing all 269 persons on board, Germany returned it’s capital to Berlin in 1999 and it’s Chicken Boy’s birthday (the 22 foot statue of a boy with a chicken for a head that was the mascot of a fried chicken restaurant, when the restaurant closed, the Future Studio of Los Angeles rescued it and put it on a roof top on Route 66.  It has become quite the icon).

I know it’s been a week, sorry guys.  I will have another post with pic’s on why I’ve been remiss on my blogging.

Briefly, I would like to weigh in on this health care debate.  Health care needs addressed, but creating a voucher system for our seniors is totally out of the question.  I’m sure I’m not the only middle aged adult that has difficulty figuring out what what’s covered and what’s not covered and why in my health care policy.  And I’m sure I’m not the only one dealing with an elderly loved one that would be required to make these chooses through the voucher system.  Luckily, my mom has me and my sibs to help her navigate all this stuff.  There’s a lot of elderly that don’t have younger people to help them make sense of all the complications of life.  Assuming an 84 year old could make good choices is ridiculous.

My squirrels are gone.  I read an article in the spring about a cyclical/drought related prediction that the oak trees were going to have a poor acorn harvest this summer which would lead to a major decline in the squirrel population in western Pennsylvania.  I wasn’t seeing as many squirrels lately and so bought a bag of unsalted peanuts at the store (acorns of any kind are hard to find in grocery stores).  :)  I spread them around the base of the locus tree in the Courtyard a couple of days ago.  They haven’t been touched and I haven’t seen a squirrel in over a week now.

Fossil Free Fuel, LLC got the green light (pun intended) to install their first 5,000 gallon tank and pump at 228 Braddock Avenue in Braddock.  Fossil Free processes used oils from restaurants into a fuel that can be used in diesel kind of vehicles.  Their sister company, Optimus Technologies, LLC converts standard diesel vehicles into bio-diesel vehicles.  They have plans to increase the “gas” station to four pumps.

Speaking of Braddock, Mayor Fetterman has another project breaking ground.  Trek Development is breaking ground on 24 new townhouse apartments on the site of the former UPMC Braddock Hospital.  Did I mention that the greedy “non-profit” UPMC tore down the Braddock hospital in this distressed area of Allegheny County (ie lower household incomes) and just opened a $250M facility six miles away in a more affluent area, Monroeville.  Oh, and they build this brand new hospital directly across the street from their rival’s Forbes Regional Hospital.  Such scum bags.  No wonder health care keeps getting more expensive.  What galls me is not the blatant greed on UPMC’s part, but that they continually get away with it.

What to “get” a friend?  CelebCalls.com offers celebrities pre-recorded messages.  There’s one with Ben Roethlisberger’s voice that says “I’m here with (your name) and he told me that you are a big fan of  (another football team’s name).  I mean, don’t get me wrong, there are worse teams out there, let me rephrase that:  They are one of the worst teams out there”.  You get this for $3.99 per message.  There’s other celebs, athletes, entertainers and other performers.  Some of the celebs take the income, most donate it to a charity of their choice.  CelebCalls rolled out two years ago with Ice T and his wife Coco, since then they have added other stars that ended up collectively recording tens of thousands of messages.  Although Ben’s message is less than a minute, it took hours to record all of the names, phrases, teams they had to record.

What a mess Randy Travis is these days.  He seems to be taking the spot light of f Charlie Sheen.  He was arrested six months ago on public drunkenness in Plano, TX.  He was arrested last week passed out in a car he wrecked, naked.  And just this past Friday, he was again arrested in a church parking lot for public drunkenness and even threatened the police officers.  Randy and his wife (who was his manager) divorced in 2010 and those relationships have taken a big downward spiral.

There seems to be growing opposition to ALCOSAN’s $2B water treatment white elephant.  County Controller Chelsa Wagner has joined County Executive Rich Fitzgerald in calling for them to explore green options.  Instead of constructing HUGE underground aqueducts to hold the excess storm/sewer waters until the plants can process them, lower the amount of run off with green programs.  ALCOSAN said that option was impossible because they have no authority over all of the municipalities they service.  I would imagine Rich Fitzgerald could weigh in on that.  Why don’t the petty bureaucrats try looking outside the little boxes that keep them penned in?

Here’s a little factoid for you.  Twenty-six companies paid their CEO’s more than they paid the federal government in taxes.  I’m not even going to go here.  ):

The Buhl Planetarium will be closing this coming Tuesday for a fairly substantial renovation.  The main point is to get the ceiling repainted.  The old paint was fine for the old projector, but since install the new one in 2006, the images haven’t been as crisp as possible.  And since it’s closed, they are replacing the incandescent bulbs along the perimeters (right under the ceiling) with LED bulbs that they can coordinate with the laser shows.  New upholstery and carpeting are both in the plans.  Buhl is scheduled to reopen September 22.

The Rib Fest is again this weekend at Heinz Field.  Sorry for the late post, lat night the Clarks played.  Not much today because of the Pitt Panthers vs Youngstown State game.  Sunday, .38 Special will playing for free starting at 7:30.  Monday Uncle Kracker will perform starting at 4 pm.  The Steelers Grand Hall will be open showing the six Super Bowl trophies and the evolution of the Terrible Towel.  The original towel will be on display and then each official change in it’s design.  More info at their web site.

Speaking of rib cook-offs, they are having one at the South Park Fairgrounds also this weekend.  Hours are noon until 10 tonight and Sunday and noon until 8 on Monday.  Admission is $10 and headlining will be the Gin Blossoms tonight at 8:45, Little River Bands same time Sunday night, and the former lead singer from Bad Company Monday 6:45.  More info at 412.405.9631 or at the web site.

Allegheny County Parks Department, Citiparks and Pittsburgh Conservancy will hold meetings this month about oak wilt and the emerald ash borer.  The meeting September 11 from 10 am until noon will be held at the Buffalo Inn across from the South Park Fairgrounds and both oak wilt and emerald borer will be discussed.  On September 12 the meeting will be held at Riverview Park Activities Building from 6 until 7 on oak wilt only at Perrysville and Riverview Drives.  The meetings are free and more info can be gotten by calling Denise Schreiber at 412.835.1201.

That’s it for this post.  The remnants of hurricane Issac seem to have hit Pittsburgh as I write this.  It’s supposed to mainly be south of us.  Keep dry and enjoy your Labor Day,

ed

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