wodke-hawkinson.com Blog Musings from deviant minds (Or how writers think)


I’ll Do It Tomorrow

Someday is not a day of the week.  ~Author Unknown


Procrastination. What a word. I hate to procrastinate but, unfortunately I am not Robinson Caruso. I can’t get everything done by Friday. I promised myself that I would post something on me and my co-authors blog every single day. Well, here it is, a week into a new year and I haven’t made a post since before Christmas. Procrastination. What a word. So, once again, I am promising myself not to follow the despicable words definition. I will post daily. And, no, this post does not count. It is just a way for me to lament my wasted days. My post for the day is under Wodke Ruminates. Enjoy and I’ll see you tomorrow. (I hope.)


Tis the Season

Christmas has always been an exciting time for me. Growing up, my family would pile into the car and my dad would drive us around so we could look at all the decorations in windows and yards around town. My husband and I continued the tradition with our children. Now, with just the two of us, we try to find somewhere special to go in Kansas each year. We’ve been to Shawnee Mission, Lyons, and the Trail of Lights in Great Bend among other places. Last year we went to Pratt where they have a specifically nice Christmas display called Lemon Lane. We’ve been to Augusta and their Winter Wonderland. This year, we’ve already been to Winfield and their spectacular Isle of Lights, and hope to go to at least one more display. Begin making your own traditions this year. For now, let me wish you all a

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!



Wizard on the loose in the USA

Breaking News 

 It has been discovered that a wizard of immense power has traveled through the Giant Blue Iris Portal and has arrived on Earth near the center of the United States. The wizard had to travel across barren lands of granite gravel to reach the portal. It is uncertain why the wizard has come to our lands but we fear he might have ulterior motives since it takes bravery beyond words to enter the Blue Iris, much less to avail oneself by using the portal itself. This news reporter wishes the world luck.


 Freelance Reporter | Ima Gon Nahidenow | November 27, 2010



“Hello, my name is Gobbledygook. Aren’t I BeaUtiFul? I know that many of you are thinking about me and my kin this week. I mean, come on, Thanksgiving? How can I possibly think a day is about Thanks when you all are gunning for me? Oh, and don’t forget how BeaUtiFul I am. Look at my lovely tail. Think tranquil thoughts, turn away, and go home. Put the gun away and go to the store. Buy a frozen hunk of meat. That’s it. I see you turning. WHAT? No! Stop! Put that gun away. Don’t! DON’T! NOOooooo…..



Kids Busted for Selling Cupcakes

New Castle boys were reported to the police by a town councilman for selling cupcakes in the park this fall.

The police are cracking down on these pockets of illicit enterprise, setting a harsh example for others who might follow in the tracks of these pint-sized entrepreneurs.

“We can’t have kids out there just earning money for themselves,” stated one source close to the situation. “What kind of world are we living in? The kind of place where youngsters think it’s ok to work for a living? To their own bosses? To be resourceful? I don’t want to live in a world like that. No, sir. We’ve got to clamp down on this dangerous sense of independence and self-reliance before it mushrooms.”

Another official was quoted as saying, “It just chaps my hide that these kids would have the nerve to go out there and start their own business and make money. Usually we have to deal with drug peddlers and thieves. We’re not used to handling honest hardworking kids, and we don’t like it.”

One confidential source reveals, “On the surface, it might look harmless. But if you look deeper, you realize these kids are shrugging off years of public school indoctrination into the system of learned helplessness and dependency that our society depends on for future voters. They’ve obviously been thinking for themselves. It could get out of hand. Someday, they might want to start their own businesses or create a new product or cure a disease. The possibilities for mass damage are frightening.”

Other areas of juvenile commerce to be targeted by the new crackdown include lemonade stands, doing chores for grandma, trading baseball cards, and swapping Silly Bandz bracelets.

“We plan to micromanage and regulate every small detail of society from the amount of salt used to the kind of speech allowed. It’s our job to monitor every aspect of your life. Plus, we need the revenue from licensing to cover our outrageous spending practices. As you know, government from the top down tends to fund useless studies, unappealing works of art, and worthless projects that benefit no one. If we start losing money because of failure to pay licensing fees, some turtles in the Everglades might not get their crossing lane on a remote roadway or scientists won’t have the money to study cow flatulence. I know that seems like a reach since this is just a local issue, but these cupcake sales are just a gateway to bigger forms of tax evasion,” stated an unnamed government official.

Stiff fines and long jail sentences are being considered for all kids caught selling or trading anything without a license.

“We’ll teach those little &*##@s not to try and earn money by working,” said one hard-faced official.

It is theorized this move will lead to a thriving black market for cupcakes and lemonade.

Freelance journalist | Stretch Thatruth | 11-21-2010


Mysterious Orb Makes Appearance On Peak


This just in from Mt. Everest.  The clouds have parted on the high peak, revealing an astonishing sight perched just behind the summit; a giant luminous sphere, blazing with an internal light. Scientists estimate the circumference of the orb to be 62.8 feet with a 20 foot diameter. While the origin of the ball is unknown, scientists speculate the phenomenon is a mystery. After an intense eight hour study, experts have concluded that their findings are non-conclusive. The report is forthcoming.

Freelance reporter | Ima Rea Porter | November 19, 2010

Photo Author: Jon Sullivan
Photo Website:  http://www.public-domain-photos.com/space/3


Possible Censure for Rangel…So Harsh!

Filed by freelance journalist, Mekes U. Sik

academic,boys,chairs,depression,doors,emotions,feelings,hallways,males,moods,people,persons,principal's office,reprimands,students,troubles  Rep. Charles Rangel, Democrat from New York, was convicted on 11 of 13 charges against him. The ethics committee recommended censure. According to the AP, censure would consist of Mr. Rangel standing before his colleagues and receiving an oral rebuke.

Other disciplinary actions being considered are:

 Hand smacking: Mr. Rangel would receive several sharp raps on the back of his hand.

 Time out: Mr. Rangel would be forced to sit in another room for an unspecified amount of time and reflect on what he did wrong.

 Writing on the board: Mr. Rangel would be required to write 100 times on a chalkboard that he will not commit ethics violations again.

 Loss of privileges: Mr. Rangel will not be allowed to play video games or watch his favorite TV shows for a specified period of time.

 Going to bed without supper: Mr. Rangel would be sent to bed one night without having his evening meal. He would also forego any bedtime snacks.

 Chores: Mr. Rangel would be required to wash dishes and carry out the garbage for one week, or until he learns his lesson, whichever comes first.

 Each of these penalties is severe by Washington standards. A lighter punishment could have been recommended such as a reprimand or a fine, but it is obvious Mr. Rangel is having the book thrown at him. There has even been talk of sitting him in the corner or allowing the former house speaker to administer swats to his bottom with a wooden paddle on C-Span.

In an unrelated story, Mr. Clive Klodpiper failed to report rental income of $100 on his 2008 taxes. The IRS has levied his farm, seized his vehicles and private property, and confiscated his bank accounts. He has been sentenced to 20 years in prison and ordered to donate a kidney to an unnamed justice department official. His passport has been rendered invalid, his 30 year marriage to Hortence has been annulled against his wishes, and his vehicles sold for revenue to be applied to his tax debt. When he has served his prison sentence, he will be required to register as a tax offender. He will also be subject to fines and penalties in excess of $700,000,000.

 But, at least he won’t be censured. He really lucked out.


A Name Game

Want to play a name game? Simply try to remember the name of an actor or actress that played in the last movie you watched. Or the name of a neighbor. Or a place that you’ve been. Or the word that describes a certain thing.

What’s the first thing most of us do? Well, I don’t know about you, but for me, I usually remember the first letter of who or what it is I’m trying to remember. Why? I have no clue but it is true.

Just today, I was talking to a co-worker and we were trying to remember the word for someone who has to go through a trial period before entering a club. I knew immediately that the word began with ‘p’, but couldn’t think of the word itself. It was actually my co-worker who came up with the word; pledge.

This happens to me all the time and I have no explanation for it. If you know the reason, please leave a …what’s the word? It starts with a ‘c’. Oh yeah, comment.



Why must the inside of cleaning machines be cleaned?





(Image Public Domain, Wikipedia Commons)

In 1886, Josephine Cochran invented the first working dishwasher. In 1908, the first electric washing machine was introduced by the Hurley Machine Company. It was invented by Alva J. Fisher. These people make the list of my technological heroes. They have made life simpler for everyone.

But, I still have an issue with these products. I ask you; what are the jobs of these two appliances? The answer is obvious: To clean things. So, why do they, themselves, have to be cleaned?

Good question, you say. Right. But does there appear to be a good answer? Well, yes, there does. As you wash dishes and clothes, soap can cause a build-up on the inside of these appliances, thus making it imperative that they be cleaned in able to have them continue to perform to your satisfaction.

Okay. I guess. But, I still contend that it is ridiculous that something needs to be cleaned when its sole purpose in the world is to clean things. Am I wrong?


Information on inventors: http://inventors.about.com/

Information on how stuff works: http://www.howstuffworks.com/

Image from Public Domain: Wikipedia Commons: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Commons


A Fair Tax for Americans

Dollar by Anna Cervova

How about a tax on what you spend, instead of what you earn? This would mean you could work three jobs, if you were so inclined, and pay not a penny in income taxes. You could keep all your money. Then, if you decided to save half of it, you would pay no taxes on the interest. The only tax you would pay would be when you buy something. You would not be punished for being industrious and frugal. Under this system, people with more money to spend would pay more taxes. What could be more fair?

Under a consumption tax such as this one, people who do not normally pay income taxes right now would then have to pay taxes. For instance, illegal aliens who are currently paid under the table with no income taxes taken out of their pay would pay every time they buy groceries, clothing, electronics, cars, or any other item. Drug pushers would pay. Obviously drug peddlers don’t pay income tax on their illegal earnings, but under a consumption tax, they would have to pay each time they bought anything. Even drug dealers have to have clothes, groceries, utilities and transportation.

The current tax system has for years been used to reward certain behaviors and punish others. For the average hard-working American, success is punished. If you work more, you pay more. If you invest in something and make a profit, you are taxed for it. Only the most sophisticated among us are able to manipulate tax loopholes to avoid this. The tax system is used to punish or reward certain behaviors also, such as marriage and family size. Under a consumption tax, this meddling in our personal lives would stop or at least be significantly reduced. Success would not be punished, and even the rich could not avoid paying taxes because taxes would be paid every time a purchase is made.

I’m not talking about a VAT, which is a value-added tax, a punitive tax placed on a product at every level of production. Some politicians want a VAT in ADDITION to the income taxes we already pay. This is simply outrageous. No, we want nothing to do with a Value Added Tax.

Proponents of a consumption tax such as this one believe poor people should not be unfairly burdened by higher taxes on necessities. Therefore, households would receive a monthly check for the amount of tax they have to pay on necessities. It would be nice to receive a check every month, wouldn’t it? This payment is called a "prebate". And right now, it is estimated that it would be over $500.00 per month per family.

Proponents also say the price of goods would stay relatively the same because all the current embedded taxes would be eliminated. Now, when we purchase something, the price already includes secret taxes, taxes we shoppers don't know about. These would go away, reducing the price of the item. Once the consumption tax is added on, the price would be pretty much the same as it was before.

The elimination of capital gains taxes, death taxes, income taxes, and corporate taxes is predicted to result in a boom in business in the United States. Companies that have sent production overseas because of restrictive tax rates here could return to the USA. Foreign businesses would come to the USA because it would be cheaper for them to operate. Jobs would grow and the economy would surge.

Opponents of a consumption tax lie. They say it is a 23% sales tax and make it sound like it is in addition to income taxes, instead of replacing income and other taxes. They fear it because it takes control away from the federal government and gives it back to the people. Politicians, by and large, are unwilling to give up that power.

The enormous, cumbersome, and intrusive IRS would be phased out, which would save our country billions of dollars. A huge amount of resources are expended to enforce the current tax code. Wouldn’t it be nice if our government (via us, the taxpayers) didn’t need to spend that money anymore?

A consumption tax of this type would be the fairest way for the government to collect the revenue it needs to operate. Because of that, this plan is called the FairTax. To learn more about the FairTax, visit: http://www.fairtax.org/site/PageServer?pagename=about_main

A few years ago, I was working fulltime plus I had a sewing business. I saved and saved until I had enough money to put a down payment on a small house. I fixed that house up and then resold it, making a profit. Now at that time, I was already giving the federal government money from my regular paycheck in the form of payroll taxes. And they also wanted their share of my profit from my investment house. It seemed to me that I was being punished for working hard. It seemed to me that the government did not want me to get ahead; they just stuck their greedy hands into every part of my life. I resented it. But I had no choice. Taxes ate up almost a third of my profit on the investment house. How fair is that? Under the FairTax, that wouldn’t have happened.

This is why I favor the FairTax. I favor rewarding success. I favor putting people in charge of their own destinies. I favor getting politicians out of the business of picking winners and losers or manipulating behaviors. I favor everyone paying their share of taxes, even if they are involved in nefarious activities or in this country illegally. It’s time to stop the system that punishes the most productive among us.

If you like the idea of a FairTax, contact your representative in Washington and encourage them to support this legislation. I say we give it a test in one state and see how it works. Just for a few years, give one state a chance to prove or disprove the FairTax. Suspend income and other taxes in that state for the duration of the experiment, and implement the FairTax. Then we would have the answers to show whether a FairTax will work or not.


Photo by Anna Cervova