Green Hills

Posted December 9, 2021 by joebowker
Categories: Uncategorized

So I went to get my haircut today and after I was done I decided to take a ride up to Green Hills Cemetery to visit Mary’s grave. Today is one of those rare days in LA where the rain is falling.

Today is a dreary day with light rain falling. On the drive up the hill to the mausoleum where Mary is interred, I passed several funerals in progress. Such a dreary time to die, but there is no hiatus in deaths during the holiday season.

I passed many graves where the families of the dearly departed had decorated the graves with bright and shiny holiday ornaments, some more brighter than others. I didn’t take any pictures. I didn’t want to impose on the family’s grief.

One thing that I wanted to do was to check on Mary’s grave marker. They were supposed to add a Square & Compass and OES marker. Not been done. We will call to see what happened. Here’s the picture:

National Lampoon Christmas Vacation

Posted December 9, 2021 by joebowker
Categories: Christmas


Nothing like getting into the Christmas spirit by watching Chevy Chase. The gags never seem to get old.

We watched Christmas Vacation last night. It is available on Amazon Prime. We always love to see Cousin Eddie show up in his broken down motor home.

Our Christmas Letter

Posted December 6, 2021 by joebowker
Categories: Uncategorized

Our Christmas letter is just about finished and ready to mail. Every year I have been writing a Christmas letter for all of our friends. I first started in 1997 or 1998 (at least I have issues on my hard drive going back to that date.

I got the idea from Paula’s Mom who did a Christmas letter for all of her friends and family. She wrote it on her IBM Selectric typewriter. Her goal was to reach out to the many folks who worked for the US Park Service (where Harold used to work during the summer). Many of those folks were spread out across the country.

So I send my letter to our readers spread out across the country, mostly in CA and MA but a few in other locales.

My first couple of issues just had clip art and no pictures. Now I add recent pictures of us and our family. I get Christmas-y paper and envelopes from Amazon.

I actually started work on this year’s letter back in October. Final copy is approved by my editor (Paula) and goes to print. I make sure I have bought new ink cartridges for my printer. I always run out of ink during the print run.

I also work on vetting my mailing list. I need to check addresses. Currently, I have about 125 people on my list. Some people get added, some deleted. I try to make sure that I don’t make the faux pas of sending a letter to ‘John and Jane Doe” when one of the pair has died in the past year. And, I try to make sure that I have everyone’s latest address.

I use an app on my iPad called Label Printer to print the address labels. It really does a great job. The actual letter is done using Microsoft Word.

Paula usually writes a personal note on some of the letters. The first batch of letters will be hitting the mail box by tomorrow.

Time to get back to my blog

Posted August 17, 2021 by joebowker
Categories: Uncategorized

Well it has been a while since I’ve posted on my blog. I think that my last post was in Nov 2020. Time to get back on the horse.

So far, Paula and I have survived the pandemic. Though, not without some trauma. Last February, I fell and hit my head. Took a ride with the EMT’s. I spent about 4 days in the hospital while they did multiple MRI’s, X-rays and scans. Eventually they cut me loose with a few neck braces.

In other news, Paula’s mother passed away in March at the age of 97. We are struggling with dealing with her estate. Eventually we will get it done.

Meanwhile, we have both received two doses of the Pfizer vaccine. Perhaps, a third? We’ll see.

We had to cancel our planned trip to Boston back in 2020. We have not been more than 20 miles from our home since the onset of the pandemic.

We are planning a drive up to the Sacramento area for an OES reception at the end of August. We’re driving. We are not quite ready to get on an airplane just yet.

We had the pleasure (not) of going to LAX a couple of weeks ago to pick up our son and his wife. Traffic on a Sunday night was particularly nasty.

Okay, that’s all for now. Be safe.


1SE – 1 Second Everyday – October 2020

Posted October 31, 2020 by joebowker
Categories: 1 Sec Every Day, 1SE

Tags: , ,

Here is this month’s video. Runtime is about one minute. Enjoy.

Fixing the Leak in the Drain Part 3

Posted October 12, 2020 by joebowker
Categories: Plumbing

Well the beat goes on. We had the construction crew come to patch up the wall. Actually it was only one guy. So the hole in the wall is gone.

Tomorrow, painter comes to repaint the ceiling and wall. Still don’t know when we get a new mirror. 8 months and counting. Sigh…

1SE – 1 Second Everyday

Posted September 30, 2020 by joebowker
Categories: 1 Sec Every Day, 1SE

September 2020

Jersey Boys

Posted September 25, 2020 by joebowker
Categories: Movies, Reviews

Tags: , ,

Last night, we watched “Jersey Boys” on Netflix. It’s also running on Amazon Prime but you rent for $3.99. This is the film that is based on the Broadway show of the same name done a few years ago. The film and show are based on the pop music group “Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.

So I was reading the obits in the Los Angeles Times a couple of days ago. (At my age, I find myself reading the obits more and more often. So I ran across an obit about Tommy DeVito (not to be confused with Danny DeVito, the actor). So that sparked my interest in watching Jersey Boys. Here’s the obit from the Los Angeles Times.

Mr DeVito died of the corona virus and he was 92 years young. He sang baritone along with the others in the Four Seasons.

The movie covers the beginnings of the group singing in bars and night clubs. Eventually, they met Bob Gaudio who wrote most of the groups most successful songs.

Bob Gaudio wrote hits like “Sherry”, “Big Girls Don’t Cry”, ”Walk Like a Man” and many, many more. One cannot help but sing along, even if you were not alive when these songs were first released.

Franki Valli, Bob Crewe, Tommy DeVito, Bob Gaudio

We watched the film to the very end, listening to all the music while the credits rolled by.

I suppose that Four Season’s musical journey is not unlike other pop groups struggling to get heard by the right people.

Another Deep Dive

Posted September 19, 2020 by joebowker
Categories: Pictures

Tags: , ,

Last week I spent about three days scanning three boxes of slides. Paula’s Dad was always taking pictures, mostly as color 35mm slides. This batch was about 350 slides taken (best I can tell taken in the 1950’s and some in the 1970’s

I have decided to post about a dozen or so. These pictures were of Mt Lassen National Park and other mountains in California and the west. Click or tap on each picture to see the detail.

Harold worked as a high school teacher of biology in Long Beach. In the summer, he worked as a park ranger at Mt Lassen National Park. The Stanley family would head north on the day after school closed for the summer in June. There was no one happier than Harold heading north to Lassen in the summer.

Here’s what the area looked like in June. There was much snow left. The cabin was at Summit Lake where they would live for the summer.

Fixing the Leak in the Drain (part 2)

Posted September 16, 2020 by joebowker
Categories: Plumbing

Tags: , ,

Plumbers were here today to work on the drain. The plan was to replace the main drain pipe from the unit 301 on the third floor down to our unit 101.

The plumbers were from Radisic Plumbing in San Pedro. They did a good job including laying down drop cloths.

Next step will be to repair the holes in the wall and get a new mirror.

Here are my pictures: