I don’t think he knows that he’s not a kitten anymore. I still remember the day i got to bring him home. He was already potty trained. He knew how to use the scratching post. I was thinking earlier how someone could possible give him up for adoption. I was even finding myself getting upset about it.. but the more i thought about it.. the more i realized that if they hadn’t given him up, i would have never gotten to know him.

He’s been such a great cat. He greets me when i get home, like he’s been waiting for me to come home. He’ll sit in my lap and just purr. He’ll even come lie down next to me in the morning to be there before i wake up.

I don’t consider him adopted.. or my son or anything like that. it’s more of a symbiotic relationship. I don’t think of myself as his dad. i’m not his master or anything. He’s just another member of the family.

On that thought, i’m not sure what type of parent i would actually be. With ozzie, all of the hardwork was done already. He came home with me ready to love, to play and to be the best cat i’ve ever known. with kids of your own, it’s up to you to get them to that point. i don’t have any idea how to do any of that stuff. i don’t know how to raise kids up.

Patti’s tubes are tied, so their isn’t really a chance of us being pregnant, but the thought does cross our minds. Not that we’re second guessing things… but just that “what-if” chance. If we ever did end up pregnant, it wouldn’t be something horrible. it would be surprising, and shocking, but not something i would regret. i think i would be most apprehensive about my own ability to take on the responsibly of someone else’s life. What if the kid doesn’t like me? What if they decide they want to play baseball or something. I don’t know the first thing about baseball or worse, what if they become a democrat?

Patti has done an awesome job with the children she’s already had. My part in their lives has all been after the fact. Even getting to hang out with the Leals. I love those kids, but again, the Leal’s are the one’s who did all the hard work. I just get to enjoy all of their company.

I know i couldn’t ever be as good a parent as Patti. I don’t have any disillusions about that. We just went to my dad’s 75th birthday party saturday. 75 years. can you imagine that? I’m having a hard enough time with the year after the year i’m currently at. and that’s not even half that. When i’m that age, what am i going to be remembered for. what kind of legacy am i going to leave.

ok i have no idea where i went with all of that. i don’t think it makes any sense. i need some sleep.

The Birk Economic Recovery Plan

Hi Pals,

I’m against the $85,000,000, 000.00 bailout of AIG. Instead, I’m in favor of giving $85,000,000, 000 to America in a We Deserve It Dividend. To make the math simple, let’s assume there are 200,000,000 bonafide U.S. Citizens 18+. Our population is about 301,000,000 +/- counting every man, woman and child. So 200,000,000 might be a fair stab at adults 18 and up..

So divide 200 million adults 18+ into $85 billion that equals $425,000.00.

My plan is to give $425,000 to every person 18+ as a We Deserve It Dividend. Of course, it would NOT be tax free. So let’s assume a tax rate of 30%. Every individual 18+ has to pay $127,500.00 in taxes. That sends $25,500,000, 000 right back to Uncle Sam . But it means that every adult 18+ has $297,500.00 in their pocket.

A husband and wife has $595,000.00. What would you do with $297,500.00 to $595,000.
00 in your family?

Pay off your mortgage – housing crisis solved.

Repay college loans – what a great boost to new grads
Put away money for college – it’ll be there
Save in a bank – create money to loan to entrepreneurs.

Buy a new car – create jobs
Invest in the market – capital drives growth
Pay for your parent’s medical insurance – health care improves
Enable Deadbeat Dads to come clean – or else

Remember this is for every adult U S Citizen 18+ including the folks who lost their jobs at Lehman Brothers and every other company that is cutting back. And of course, for those serving in our Armed Forces.

If we’re going to re-distribute wealth let’s really do it…instead of trickling out a puny $1000.00 ( “vote buy” ) economic incentive that is being proposed by one of our candidates for President.

If we’re going to do an $85 billion bailout, let’s bail out every adult U S Citizen 18+!

As for AIG – liquidate it. Sell off its parts. Let American General go back to being American General.

Sell off the real estate. Let the private sector bargain hunters cut it up and clean it up. Here’s my rationale. We deserve it and AIG doesn’t. Sure it’s a crazy idea that can “never work.

But can you imagine the Coast-To-Coast Block Party! How do you spell Economic Boom? I trust my fellow adult Americans to know how to use the $85 Billion We Deserve It Dividend more than I do the geniuses at AIG or in Washington DC .

And remember, The Birk plan only really costs $59.5 Billion because $25.5 Billion is returned instantly in taxes to Uncle Sam . Ahhh…I feel so much better getting that off my chest.

Kindest personal regards,

T. J.
Birkenmeier, A Creative Guy & Citizen of the Republic

life moves pretty fast

if you don’t stopand look around one in a while, you might miss it.

Patti is still sick and still going 100 miles an hour.  This past saturday Hannah had her swim team’s carwash.  I don’t think i’ve worked that hard since our work dat in the youth building.  They ended up rasing close to 1000 dollars.  That evening was her awards cermony for the Valley Land Fund.  Didn’t end up getting any thing from there.  Patti and her went looking at the other wining photos and the subjects that won were the same subject that she took.  I was disapointed because she had some really good photos but oh well.  And the contest wasn’t really fashioned for novice photographers.  So.. i’ll be looking around for other ones for her that are geared to helping the kids, seeing their photos and helping them improve.   “This was a good one, not this one, or if you had done this.. ” a little more instruction after the fact would have been helpful. 

Saturday is my Dad’s birthday.  Mom wanted me to work on a photo presentation to have running during the festivities.  I came across this photo..


on the back was…




it was odd seeing this side of my dad.  Not just young.. but obviously a romantic.  I’ve just never seen him as an emotional person.  I’ve never seen him cry, i think i would freak if i ever did.  He’s just always been this big strong person who is always in control. 

I wish i could be that calm..  Watching the bail-out roulette table it’s pins and needles waiting to see who’s next.  It’s depressing logging into to my 401k portofilio.  They keep saying.. it’s ok when the market’s down.. you can buy more at a cheeper price.  I guess i can stand to wait for retirement.  I’m not 65 yet.  grant it another un-birthday is coming up. this is one that i’m not particually looking forward to.  growing up stinks sometimes.  I would so love to go to the park and play on the swings, climb on the jungle gym, swing on the monkey bars.  Watch the one time i try a gang of old laddies come at me swinging purses.  I’ll just have to resort to the trampoline in the backyard when no-one is looking.

Did we forget?

not that we’ve forgotten what happened this day 7 years ago, but we forgot how we felt that day. Those days and weeks and even months afterwords.
That day i was at church doing video editing work. Patti called and told me if i knew what had happened? I asked what channel.. she said “any channel”
She came over and together we watched what my eyes were seeing but i couldn’t believe.

in december of 02 i got to go to New York City. Anyone who’s ever been knows that you walk everywhere. We would take a daily trip each day. One day we went down to the business district, wall street, all that area. The city is always noisy. Taxis’s cars, trucks, horns.. it’s just always a town on the go. And construction everywhere. It’s not rare to see plywood and scaffold setup everywhere. As we were walking, all of a sudden it got quiet. their was an errie quiet.. and a wall of plywood around a walk way. it wasn’t until i began looking around that all of a sudden i recognized where i was. I can still remember that feeling. The rawness of not only the earth at that location but the quietness, the reverence and respect that that place had. it was like walking into a catholic church. On the last trip i took to NYC we didn’t go by there. I don’t think i could stand to see that area in any other state then when i last saw it. i don’t think i could comprehend how people could speak in a voice louder than a whisper in that area. i don’t want to ever forget.


it’s been a few days since i’ve said anything on here so here’s the latest.  I really don’t like BBVA aka, Compass Bank.

I’m sure they are not mean people or anything, and i’m sure that their banking practices work… but Patti put it best, People in the valley are backwards.  They do not work like the rest of the world.  When it comes to customer service, people in the valley are really spoiled.  (not including the customer service (or lack of) from Time Warner Cable, but that’s mostly do to the fact that their is not other cable provider willing to come down here.. but that’s another post)  I enjoy the benefits of a community bank.  I like being able to walk into my local branch, know the ladies in the lobby and have them address me as i walk in by my name.  I like being able to call a local customer service number and talk to someone who probably live near by where i live and speaks a language that i speak and fluently.  I don’t want to have to pay for extras like Internet Banking.  I like knowing that if i deposit cash, that i can withdraw that same cash the same day.  I don’t like being charged for each direct deposit i get.  just to name a few.  yeah, i guess the valley has grown on me and i’ve gotten spoiled too.  I spent a few weeks shopping around for new banks.  Frost had two neat features, 1 was a online-only bank account.  I heard about these when i was working for a bank a few years ago.  No brick and mortar banks.  everything is done electronically.  They even gave you interest on your checking account.  They also had another account that would reimburse your atm fees from other banks.  I looked at several other banks but in the end, the one we chose to move all of our accounts to was First National Bank.  It’s a pain having to change all the direct deposits and auto debits but consolidating everything has been something i’ve been wanting to do for a while anyway. 

What else has gone on… Patti, Tori and Randall are all sick.  The Flu is what they are calling it.  Needless to say, it hasn’t been to fun at home.  Hopefully they will start feeing better soon. 

Hurricane IKE doesn’t seam to be heading our way anymore.  Grant it, i love the fun of being in the middle of it all.  Putting my skills to the test.  Being away from home really stinks.  During Gustav, i got to enjoy it from the comfort of my bed, getting our Louisiana stations on their backup systems.  Our Corpus stations may encounter some trouble.  I’ll be in my pajama’s ready if they need. 

During all the research i was doing looking for banks, i saw that a few of them had some openings.  I threw my resume out there to see if i could find something closer to home.  After almost 6 years this drive is getting old.  Also not seeing any sort of raise in 6 years is also pretty despairing.  And corporate is telling us to cut even more during this last quarter.  So.. looking forward to things changing around here doesn’t seam to promising. 

Wind, rain, and trees?

wow.. three post in one day.  Dont get used to it.

the hurricane cordinator for clear channel had me get a hold of the engineers at Baton Rouge earlier today.  They lost several stations and needed help getting back on the air with the backup system.  We were able to get all but one station back up.  Their is a tree blocking the access to the transmitter and the satelite decoder needs to be rebooted.  The poor guys out their have have a long day.  We’ll just have get some rest and try agaiin tommrow.  I listened a little to one off their stations, WJBO and it was like reliving Dolly all over again.  One of the first things to go in a storm like this is the power.   I’ve yet to see one of those fancy tv’s with a battery compartment.  Many people turn to the radio when their tv goes out… so getting these stations back on the air was a high priority.  Hopefully things will be easier tommrow.