WAS is the acronym for my new plan to escape the grip of big pharma.

If you’re over the age of 50, you’re almost certainly taking too damned many pills. I know I am. Pills to regulate heart rate and blood pressure and blood sugar and a list of chemicals I can’t even name. Pills to make organs do things they wouldn’t normally do or stop doing things they would normally do. Every single one of the fixes one thing while screwing up something else.

I’m already trying to get better through being careful not to eat too much of anything that might be bad for me. I look for grass-fed beef and free range chicken. I try to find organic vegetables for most of my recipes.

I’ve tried every diet known to man. I’ve tried Atkins, Paleo, Vegetarian, Macrobiotic, Ketogenic, and on and on and on. They’re all too complicated and require far too much work. Not to mention you have to eat all the stuff that’s not allowed before you start because otherwise you’re either throwing stuff away or your spouse gets to have all the goodies while you suffer.

WAS stands for wheat, alcohol, sugar. Those are the three things I’m eliminating from my eating habits. Wheat and sugar went away the week before Thanksgiving, and it worked out okay. Alcohol goes away today. Thanksgiving stress (more than 25 people in one room, all talking at once) required beer. Christmas is going to be a much more intimate, quiet celebration. New Years is no issue at all. The last time we left the house for New Years, Reagan was president.

Anyway, just eliminating sugar and wheat has made it possible for me to fit into some of my old clothes already. Medically, I’ll just have to wait for my next doctor visit to see how things are going. What I’m hoping for is that my doctor notices an improvement in everything.

I’ll bet you a cigar he doesn’t advise me to add any wheat, alcohol, or sugar back into the diet plan.


I Have a Dream (lo-cal, no sodium, sugar free, reduced fat version)

Just in case any of you thought Montesano was just going to stagnate under our new leadership, it turns out there is a dream to grow our little town.

A recent city elders brainstorming session was captured for posterity in our newspaper of record, the Vidette.  Someone suggested billboards facing east on Highway 12 to notify people going west that Montesano exists and has restaurants. Nothing says “we love sustainable forestry” quite like giant pictures of junk food blocking the view.

Another idea put forward? A rest stop for westbound traffic. If we had that we’d have the only westbound rest stop between Seattle and the beaches, according to the mayor.

The rest stop would, of course, require some funding from the state, but it would route people leaving the highway past the panoramic beauty of Pick-Rite’s loading dock and the downstairs entrance to the bowling alley. What better enticement for people to leave thick wads of American currency behind on their way to the beach?

Then, if we ever get the Free Wi-Fi going, people en route from Seattle to the ocean can update their Facebook pages without using up their precious cellular data.

New city slogans? The possibilities are endless.

“Montesano: Yes, we do have a pot to piss in.”

“Monte: Pee for free, see a tree.”

Then if we ever get a recreational pot store in town, well, the possibilities are endless. It won’t be quite the growth engine that attracting Microsoft or Amazon to build facilities in town would be, but we have to start somewhere.

On Race

There is one race: human.

If you’re deeply concerned about skin color – yours or someone else’s – as a measure of anything important, you’re an idiot.

If you want to succeed, work hard. Learn the rules and work within them to become a person who is valued. Then, once you’ve achieved a certain level you can start to make different rules. That’s all color independent.

It’s entirely possible that you have things to overcome. Maybe you have dark skin, or you’re too short, or you have a hearing loss, or you’re a woman trying to get a job that generally only has men doing it. That means you’ll have to work a little harder. Everybody has something they have to overcome. If you’re blaming a lack of success on anything except your own effort and attitude, you’re wrong.


To those on public assistance:

“Help” means you’re trying to do something and I’m trying to assist you in accomplishing whatever that something is.

If I’m helping you move a couch, you pick up one end and I’ll pick up the other. You do not get to sit on the couch and complain while I move it.

Things and Stuff

Say what you want, football athletes having legal problems – particularly legal problems related to violent crimes – should just play football and shut up until the due process of law runs its course.

The news of their troubles should not clutter up the sports pages. That news is better reported in other parts of the press.

Once convicted, the stories should not be considered sports-related nor deliberately magnified by their fame. They’re human. Humans fail. I don’t want all of my failures broadcast, and I don’t think they deserve that either.

Random Observations

There are a number of countries in the world where you can be killed just for being American. I think I’ll stay home.


Football, especially American Professional Football, is a huge waste of time and money. Huge. I can’t imagine anything to surpass it. I also can’t explain a valid reason why I’ll be glued to the television every Sunday for the next 22 weeks.

Go Hawks.


Is there any documentation of how much golf is played and how much time is spent on vacations by U.S. Presidents? I’m curious. Our current occupant of the White House seems to be very prolific at both.

Never trouble trouble until trouble troubles you.

Just Quickly

The Westboro Baptist Church is reportedly planning to picket the funeral of Robin Williams.

They called him a “fag pimp.”

They are human detritus. The reasonable thing to do is all the able-bodied men in the vicinity of their pickets go beat up all the able-bodied men standing with the protestors. You’ll get arrested, but it will feel good and not a jury in the country would convict you.

What’s In It?

Food you order from your car and food you buy in a box should be avoided. With that said, in today’s culture everybody wants things done quickly. “Microwave Ready” is an important thing to put on the package.

Everything you can put in your mouth either helps or hurts your health.

If you absolutely MUST eat that stuff, at least take a bit of time to find out what you’re putting in your body. There are some things you should NEVER eat:

  • High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)
  • Aspartame and Sucralose (Nutrasweet and Splenda)
  • Monosodium Glutamate

That’s a short list of absolutely never. That stuff is plain bad. There are no health benefits to any of it.

After that, it’s also good to find out what the rest of the ingredients are. Let’s take a look at a common ingredient set from a Healthy Choice® dinner. I’m going to go with Portabella Spinach Parmesan. It sounds pretty good for me. What’s in it? Well, don’t go to the Healthy Choice website to look. If the ingredients list there, I can’t find it.


Over on Fooducate.com is the list of ingredients for this highly processed dish. The first few ingredients listed sound okay. pasta, water, mushrooms, spinach, but as you get further down the list you find “onion puree (onion, evaporated cane syrup, sea salt).” Evaporated cane syrup is a way to hide sugar in the ingredients. Then sugar has its own entry a couple of items later. A couple of entries later is “flavoring (contains soy).” There’s another rule I like to follow. If I can’t find an ingredient to buy to make it myself, I probably don’t want to eat it. Do you have a jar of “flavoring (contains soy)” in your kitchen? I don’t.

Yeast extract is another way to say, “monosodium glutamate.”