The overwhelming response to my question about format was:  Return to the short comments about life (observations, politics, food, inconsistencies, and insanities).  That’s what I’m going to do.  I thank all several of you who took the time to express your opinions.


My father wrote a weekly column called Stuph-n-Junk, which is why that was the original title of my blog.  I received a couple of searing responses that were less than complimentary about the blog’s name.  Okay.  I get it.  Stuph means something different now than it did then–think North Dakota and the sixties.  Also–JUNK means something totally different now–or so I’ve been told. 🙂


We noticed our water bill rising and blamed the two commodes in the house that sometimes didn’t shut off.  So on January 2nd we called the plumber–the same company that installed and services our A/C.  The price to replace the guts on two toilets was $442.  When the plumber, straight faced, handed me the estimate, he didn’t even look embarrassed.

“Why so high?  That’s outrageous.  I’m not begrudging you a profit, but . . . “

“That’s the prices in the standardized rate book.”

“You said RAPE BOOK?”

“Ah, no ma’am.  You can buy a service contract and reduce the price by 15%.”

“If I buy the contract, I will actually have to pay $75 more today.”

You get the point.  Some questions and answers revealed the rates were not standardized with anyone but the company doing the work.

As we slipped over our own personal, post-holiday spending, fiscal cliff, I thought maybe an outhouse would do the trick and be much more economical.

About that time, I glanced at the television.  President Obama was talking about the federal Fiscal Cliff and imploring Congress to move forward.  Seemed appropriate.  Maybe they need an outhouse in Washington, D.C., too.  Or maybe they just need to rip a sheet from the standardized rape book.

More later.  GEB