postheadericon Nostalgia-a great man . . .


My friend Marilee who always shares thoughtful stories and jokes in her emails to me sent me the link to the video mentioned at the end of my rambling thoughts.

Remember Bob Hope?

For those who remember and for those who might be too young to know what this man was about. Bob Hope was a great entertainer, an even better person, and a great American.

Seeing the U Tube video of Bob Hope brought about memories and my following ruminations. I am not preaching by any means–just sharing my own views and wishing I could do as much good for my fellow man, certainly on a much smaller scale, as Bob Hope  did in his long, giving life.

Watch to the end. If you don’t cry, you just aren’t old enough….and if you are too young to remember World War II and the Korean and Viet Nam wars, you will see how our troops from these past wars and our current wars defended our country at great cost and many of their lives just to make a difference in the world, defend those fighting for survival, and protect our country.  The real America is one of sacrifice, honor, protection of our way of life, and belief in what our country stood for and may again someday.  We have become a country for the most part of greed, selfishness, lack of service to our country and our fellow citizens, and loss of our faith in and obedience to God.  Maybe, really there is no maybe about it, I am old fashioned with a moral code drilled into me by my parents, my faith, and my education; I developed a conscience and a moral code which sometimes felt and feels like a burden as I did not always want to take the harder road and follow as obedience to a code, those in authority, and God is not always easy. I have fallen and certainly made mistakes by not always doing the right thing, but all my failures and shortcomings in following God’s Commandments and the Golden Rule were learning experiences; I always thank God for the lessons by which I hope to someday become the person I should be. I have learned not to judge others, because “there for the grace of God go I and I have not stood in the shoes of others.” I greatly admire those who have given their life to duty and making a difference.

Our future lies with our youth; I fervently hope our young men and women make our world a better place by following the Commandments and the Golden Rule.  I believe that the Commandments are not just our directive from God but a moral code we should all live by.  It is time to stop worshiping and emulating the celebrities who break every commandment with aplomb and start celebrating those who sacrifice themselves to make a difference. Our veterans certainly deserve to be honored more than Michael Vick, Michael Jackson, and others who lead by terribly wrong examples and are worshipped for talent and not their character and sacrifice to do the right thing. 

Bob Hope was a great American who contributed to our troops for his entire career. Please watch the entire video and show it to your children!!!

postheadericon CRUELTY TO ANIMALS–LEADS TO . . .

Those of us who have worked with rescue, shelters, or humane societies have always believed if a person abuses animals that same person will abuse children or adults who cannot defend themselves.  In fact the Ohio Revised Code mandates that Humane Societies (not affiliated with the HSUS which does no real rescue work, has no shelters, and never bears the brunt of actual animal welfare) in our state take children or older adults from homes in which there is abuse or neglect.  This law is not enforced today, but humane societies must refer such cases to the appropriate social services.  There is a strong link between animal abuse and human abuse. 

and to remember…from Arthur Schopenhauer’s (1788-1860), The Basis of

“Since compassion for animals is so intimately associated with goodness of character, it may be confidently asserted that whoever is cruel to animals cannot be a good man.”

Now please take a look at the following websites:

postheadericon My Kind Of Diet


I will not incriminate the friend who sent this to me, but I believe this diet was meant for me. Hell, I think I have been following this diet since age five and keep going back to it when I begin to get too shapely!!!  I wonder where I got the fat gene?


   1 grapefruit
   1 slice whole wheat toast
   1 cup skim milk


   1 small portion lean, steamed chicken
   1 cup spinach
   1 cup herbal tea
   1 Hershey’s kiss  

Afternoon Tea

   1 The rest of the Hershey Kisses in the
   1 tub of Hagan Daz fudge ice cream


   4 glasses of wine (red or white)
   2 loaves garlic bread
   1 family size supreme pizza
   3 Snickers Bars

Late Night Snack

   1 whole Sarah Lee cheesecake (eaten directly from the freezer)

Remember: Stressed spelled backward is desserts.

Handle every stressful situation like a dog.  Pee on it and walk.  (oh, if only it were that easy!)

postheadericon The dog story- !!! KLEENEX ALERT !!!

It amazes me that my that my friend Marilee Snyder keeps sending me emails about facts or stories that seem to be a fit for this blog . I used a whole box of Kleenex reading this one:

Ain’t nothing like a dog!

They told me the big black Lab’s name was Reggie as I looked at him lying in his pen. the shelter was clean, no-kill, and the people really friendly. I’d only been in the area for six months, but everywhere I went in the
small college town, people were welcoming and open. Everyone waves when you pass them on the street.

But something was still missing as I attempted to settle in to my new life here, and I thought a dog couldn’t hurt.
Give me someone to talk to. And I had just seen Reggie’s advertisement on the local news. The shelter said they had received numerous calls right after, but they said the
people who had come down to see him just didn’t look like “Lab people,” whatever that meant. They must’ve thought I did.

But at first, I thought the shelter had misjudged me in giving me Reggie and his things, which consisted of a dog
pad, bag of toys almost all of which were brand new tennis balls, his dishes, and a sealed letter from his previous owner. See, Reggie and I didn’t really hit it off when we
got home. We struggled for two weeks (which is how long the shelter told me to give him to adjust to his new home). Maybe it was the fact that I was trying to adjust, too. Maybe we were too much alike.

For some reason, his stuff (except for the tennis balls – he wouldn’t go anywhere without two stuffed in his mouth)
got tossed in with all of my other unpacked boxes. I guess I didn’t really think he’d need all his old stuff, that I’d get him new things once he settled in. but it became pretty clear pretty soon that he wasn’t going to.

I tried the normal commands the shelter told me he knew, ones like “sit” and “stay” and “come” and “heel,” and he’d follow them – when he felt like it. He never really seemed
to listen when I called his name – sure, he’d look in my direction after the fourth of fifth time I said it, but then he’d just go back to doing whatever. When I’d ask again, you could almost see him sigh and then grudgingly obey.

This just wasn’t going to work. He chewed a couple shoes and some unpacked boxes. I was a little too stern with him and he resented it, I could tell. The friction got so bad that I couldn’t wait for the two weeks to be up, and when it was, I was in full-on search mode for my cell phone amid all of my unpacked stuff. I remembered leaving it on the stack of boxes for the guest room, but I also mumbled, rather cynically, that the “damn dog probably hid it on me.”

Finally I found it, but before I could punch up the shelter’s number, I also found his pad and other toys from the shelter.. I tossed the pad in Reggie’s direction and he snuffed it and wagged, some of the most enthusiasm I’d seen since bringing him home.. But then I called, “Hey, Reggie, you like that? Come here and I’ll give you a treat.” Instead, he sort of glanced in my direction – maybe “glared” is more accurate – and then gave a
discontented sigh and flopped down.. With his back to me.

Well, that’s not going to do it either, I thought. And I punched the shelter phone number. But I hung up when I saw
the sealed envelope. I had completely forgotten about that, too. “Okay, Reggie,” I said out loud, “let’s see if your previous owner has any advice.”……….
“To Whoever Gets My Dog:

Well, I can’t say that I’m happy you’re reading this, a letter I told the shelter could only be opened by Reggie’s new owner. I’m not even happy writing it. If you’re reading this, it means I just got back from my last car ride with my Lab after dropping him off at the shelter. He knew something was different. I have packed up his pad and
toys before and set them by the back door before a trip, but this time… it’s like he knew something was wrong.

And something is wrong… which is why I have to go to try to make it right. So let me tell you about my Lab in the hopes that it will
help you bond with him and he with you. First, he loves tennis balls…. the more the merrier. Sometimes I think he’s part squirrel, the way he hordes them. He usually always has two in his mouth, and he tries to get a third in there. Hasn’t done it yet. Doesn’t matter where you throw them, he’ll bound after it, so be careful – really don’t do it by any roads. I made that mistake once, and it
almost cost him dearly.

Next, commands. Maybe the shelter staff already told you, but I’ll go over them again: Reggie knows the obvious ones – “sit,” “stay,” “come,” “heel.” He knows hand signals:
“back” to turn around and go back when you put your hand straight up; and “over” if you put your hand out right or left. “Shake” for shaking water off, and “paw” for a high-five.

He does “down” when he feels like lying down-I bet you could work on that with him some more. He knows “ball” and “food” and “bone” and “treat” like nobody’s business. I trained Reggie with small food treats. Nothing opens his ears like little pieces of hot dog.

Feeding schedule: twice a day, once about seven in the morning, and again at six in the evening. Regular store-bought stuff; the shelter has the brand.

He’s up on his shots. Call the clinic on 9th Street and update his info with yours; they’ll make sure to send you reminders for when he’s due. Be forewarned: Reggie hates
the vet. Good luck getting him in the car – I don’t know how he knows when it’s time to go to the vet, but he knows.

Finally, give him some time. I’ve never been married, so it’s only been Reggie and me for his whole life. He’s gone everywhere with me, so please include him on your daily
car rides if you can. He sits well in the backseat, and he doesn’t bark or complain. He just loves to be around people, and me most especially.

Which means that this transition is going to be hard, with him going to live with someone new.

And that’s why I need to share one more bit of info with you….His name’s not Reggie.

I don’t know what made me do it, but when I dropped him off at the shelter, I told them his name was Reggie. He’s a smart dog, he’ll get used to it and will respond to it, of that I have no doubt. but I just couldn’t bear to give them his real name. For me to do that, it seemed so final, that handing him over to the shelter was as good as me admitting that I’d never see him again. And if I end up
coming back, getting him, and tearing up this letter, it means everything’s fine. But if someone else is reading it, well… well it means that his new owner should know
his real name. It’ll help you bond with him. Who knows, maybe you’ll even notice a change in his demeanor if he’s been giving you problems.

His real name is Tank. Because that is what I drive. Again, if you’re reading this and you’re from the area, maybe my name has been on the news. I told the shelter that they couldn’t make “Reggie” available for adoption until they received word from my company commander. See, my parents are gone, I have no siblings, no one I could’ve
left Tank with… and it was my only real request of the Army upon my deployment to Iraq, that they make one phone call to the shelter… in the “event”… to tell them that
Tank could be put up for adoption. Luckily, my colonel is a dog guy, too, and he knew where my platoon was headed. He said he’d do it personally. And if you’re reading this,
then he made good on his word.

Well, this letter is getting to downright depressing, even though, frankly, I’m just writing it for my dog. I couldn’t imagine if I was writing it for a wife and kids and family. but still, Tank has been my family for the
last six years, almost as long as the Army has been my family.

And now I hope and pray that you make him part of your family and that he will adjust and come to love you the same way he loved me.

That unconditional love from a dog is what I took with me to Iraq as an inspiration to do something selfless, to protect innocent people from those who would do terrible
things… and to keep those terrible people from coming over here. If I had to give up Tank in order to do it, I am glad to have done so. He was my example of service and
of love. I hope I honored him by my service to my country and comrades.

All right, that’s enough. I deploy this evening and have to drop this letter off at the shelter. I don’t think I’ll say another good-bye to Tank, though.. I cried too much the first time. Maybe I’ll peek in on him and see if he finally got that third tennis ball in his mouth.

Good luck with Tank. Give him a good home, and give him an extra kiss goodnight – every night – from me.

Thank you, Paul Mallory

I folded the letter and slipped it back in the envelope.

Sure I had heard of Paul Mallory, everyone in town knew him, even new people like me. Local kid, killed in Iraq a few months ago and posthumously earning the Silver Star when he gave his life to save three buddies. Flags had been at half-mast all summer.

I leaned forward in my chair and rested my elbows on my knees, staring at the dog.

“Hey, Tank,” I said quietly.

The dog’s head whipped up, his ears cocked and his eyes bright.

“C’mere boy.”

He was instantly on his feet, his nails clicking on the hardwood floor. He sat in front of me, his head tilted, searching for the name he hadn’t heard in months. “Tank,”
I whispered. His tail swished.

I kept whispering his name, over and over, and each time, his ears lowered, his eyes softened, and his posture relaxed as a wave of contentment just seemed to flood
him. I stroked his ears, rubbed his shoulders, buried my face into his scruff and hugged him.

“It’s me now, Tank, just you and me. Your old pal gave you to me.” Tank reached up and licked my cheek. “So whatdaya say we play some ball? His ears perked again. “Yeah?
Ball? You like that? Ball?” Tank tore from my hands and disappeared in the next room.

And when he came back, he had three tennis balls in his mouth.

And now I am crying again. Please pray for our soldiers and those they have left behind  human or canine or for that matter feline and equine. With Woodstock so much in the news right now, please remember our guys who died in the Vietnam war and let’s finally pay that war’s living vets the respect we denied them then and may be still denying them as so many of them have just dropped out of the life they once would have dreamt of living before they went to Nam. 

postheadericon Big Brother IS Watching. . .

Below is an interesting read re Petdata on how their service is useful to take away more of our privacy:


Humane Society of the United States –

National Animal Control Association –

The Mother of All Databases is already a reality:

PetData Inc., a private corporation in Irving, Texas, already collects information on law-abiding citizens who happen to own pets. They say they have already databanked
information on 2 million residents in
more than 20 U. S. communities, and
four entire counties. Matthews, North Carolina, just joined the ranks of municipalities contracts with PetData.

Your personal privacy on the auction block !

If you live in a community that outsourced animal licensing functions to PetData, you may not even realize it yet. When you vaccinate your cats and dogs for rabies, your vet forwards the details to PetData Inc.

Your name, your address, your contact information. And your dog’s, or cat’s veterinary information–including reproductive status. It all goes into for-profit PetData Inc.’s privately-owned, privately-controlled database.

PetData proudly advertises its membership in the Humane Society of the United States. It has no corporate privacy policy

If breeders stop breeding because of practices that take away their privacy and their rights, where will the general public get their next quality purebred puppy?

California tax officials target breeders via Internet:

June 29, 2009
By: Timothy Kirn
For The VIN News Service

California tax officials are surfing ­ the Internet, that is.

It is not unusual for authorities, potential employers, bankers and others to use the Internet to investigate people.

And now California tax officials are targeting potential breeders that way.

According to a letter from the California Board of Equalization, board officials visited the American Kennel Club Web site and linked to individual dog clubs to identify potential breeders living in the state.

Board officials are not sure if these dog club members are breeders, but they could be.

Tax board spokeswoman Anita Gore confirmed that 361 individuals will receive the letter. She would not say how or why those particular individuals were identified, however.

Below is my prediction of what will happen if reputable breeders stop breeding and many of us are very close with all the legislation hitting us from so many directions:



____FROM A SHELTER (good luck in finding what you want)

____FROM AN INTERNET BREEDER (picking your puppy up at a gas station or Wal-Mart parking lot at 3:00 A.M. clandestinely because your breeder or better yet dog dealer won’t let you see where the dogs are raised)

____FROM A PET STORE (commercial breeders supply pet stores and may breed their own dogs or get from a puppy mill)






Where will you get your next purebred puppy?



postheadericon Unbelievable! if it can happen in Kansas . . .

Subject: UNBELIEVABLE!!: from the Kansas City Dog Blog —

Here’s the scoop:
On August 1st, the animal control department in Kansas City, MO, implemented a new policy when it comes to evaluating their field officers. Effective immediately, animal control officers in KCMO will be required to issue a minimum of 15 summonses and impound a minimum of  20 animals per month.

  Read it here:  

postheadericon Introducing Stanley . . .

I have always had horses in my life, but since I had to put my Morgan mare down at 28 years. On my 60th birthday I was still riding her bareback across the field at a full gallop.  Then I lost her. my knees had to be replaced and my back became such a disaster that I could not roll over in bed for a year.  Now my back is much better thanks to decompression therapy and my knees are so marvelous that I can kneel for an extended time in Church; I have total range of motion.  I still never thought I would truly love a horse  again or really have a desire to ride again because I did not think I could ever find a Morgan like my Glory.

When we moved we had three horses we could not keep due to the move.  If my niece and nephew had evidenced a desire to buy the farm at the time we were moving, we may have been able to keep them.  We did keep our Buttercup who was born on the farm and put her into a boarding stable. I hate selling horses as one never knows where they will wind up because horses are often sold and resold and resold.  My heart and mind were much more at ease donating the horses to a first class horse rescue, in this case Last Chance Corral in Athens, Ohio.  So we donated two of our three horses to Last Chance with the request that when and if I was ready the founder of Last Chance Corral, Victoria Goss, would help find me the horse of my dreams. With my niece and nephew living at the farm, it became possible to have horses again at the farm. I wanted another Morgan but the Morgan I wanted would have been so expensive that I could never justify buying a horse as good or better than as my Morgan mare. If you frequent this blog you may remember my blogging about the horse slaughter auction and the need for donations to Last Chance to get as many horses out of the auction as possible. Horses are winding up in slaughter auctions as they are just dumped from race tracks, from those using horse buggies as transportation and horses to plow, and to people who are just plain broke and unable to afford a horse in this economy. When Victoria and I talked about our making a donation and perhaps getting a horse from the auction to go with Buttercup when we moved her back to the farm for she needs to have the companionship of another horse, Victoria told me about a seven year old Morgan who had been kept in a round pen all his life with no training or experiences other than the round pen. She told me he was incredibly beautiful but would take a lot of work, and she meant a lot of work, to get him to the point where he could be ridden; the trainer at Last Chance looked apprehensive when she told me that it would take more than a year at the very least.  Victoria said I could have the Morgan who had just been castrated if I wanted him.  The horses that Last Chance rescued were really nice horses-hard to imagine them winding up where they did. When Al and I went to see the auction rescues at Last Chance and chose Shotzi, who is a small, very pretty and well trained bay mare, as a companion for Buttercup, we met “Screaming Demon,” the Morgan’s registered name, and I fell totally in love.  He didn’t know anything but would not try to hurt anyone and had the kindest, wisest eyes.  I connected to him instantly, but Al and I thought if foolish at my age to get such an untrained horse.  Al and I talked more that night and decided not to pursue it further.  I could not sleep.  I just knew that this horse was sent into my life for a reason as he was truly my dream horse.  So I called Victoria and said I wanted him.  I found an amazing trainer in a stable very close to where we live as I wanted “Stanley” at a barn with an indoor arena with a trainer who would use the Natural Horsemanship approach.  Stanley is coming along marvelously; he is sane, sensitive, affectionate, and so willing and anxious to please.  I will be riding him in a couple of months according to the plan. Since like my Glory, I will be the only one riding him, I hope that we will forge a relationship like I did with my Glory.  I am so very happy he is in our lives along with Shotzi and Buttercup.  Below are pictures of my “Stanley,” a name that just popped into my head as his name!stanley grazing 2  Until next time . . .


 stanley great head

stanley head

postheadericon More on Fighting the Animal Rights Movement–a must read!


Interesting article by Marc Folco the outdoor writer for The Standard Times. Contact him at

Mr. Folco really hits the mark about the agenda of HSUS and PETA, organizations who wish to jam their goals of changing the culture of mainstream America about ownership of animals, farming and livestock, hunting, meat eating, ending the enslavement of animals, and criticizing President Obama for swatting a fly. Our rights are being challenged and ended while mainstream America sleeps as one animal rights bill after another is passed in cities, communities, counties and states.  Now I hate killing Bambis, though deer herds must be thinned for many reasons) but I do stand for the rights of others to hunt.  WE MUST WAKE UP AND FIGHT FOR OUR RIGHTS! One way is to donate money to the two organizations really fighting for our rights:  Sportsmen’s and Animal Owners’ Voting Alliance (SAOVA)    and the National Alliance for the Interests of Animals and

Mr. Folco’s Article

Open Season: Firing back at the critics

June 21, 2009 6:00 AM

I get hate mail on the average of once a week, and I don’t know why. My column shouldn’t be controversial. Hunting has been around since the caveman, and guns have been around shortly after the Chinese invented gunpowder — and our Constitution clearly states that U.S. citizens have the right to keep and bear arms if they so choose. So, hunting and owning guns are two of America’s oldest and most time-honored traditions.

Why make them — and my column — a controversy?

After 21 years of dealing with cry-baby anti-hunters and runny-nosed gun-grabbers that whine incessantly about my column, the outdoors lifestyle and the shooting sports, I’ve become thick-skinned. Their barbs don’t penetrate. Some hate mail I answer, some I don’t. Some I answer here.

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), based in Washington, threw another of its hissy-fits recently because I wrote about how the wealthy animal rights group has been investigated after soliciting donations to reunite pets with their owners during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. They took in $34 million for that purpose but only spent $7 million on it. So, a whopping $27 million of solicited funds were used for something else.

In his letter to the editor, HSUS’s Michael Markarian skirts that issue and also avoids the notion that the group is pushing to get 41 dog bills enacted in 26 states that are cloaked as eliminating puppy mills, but go to the extreme, as usual. Language in such bills has included mandatory spaying/neutering (or pay $500 per dog per year that is not spayed or neutered), reporting all puppy sales to local authorities and eliminating the practice of humane tethering.

Markarian uses diversion, and says that the group campaigns vigorously against abusive hunting practices. They also (falsely) claim that I defend inhumane practices. Inhumane? By whose standards? Those of animal rights extremists? By their standards, all hunting is inhumane and the group’s underlying agenda is to eliminate all hunting.

HSUS President and CEO Wayne Pacelle has been quoted as saying, “If we could shut down all sport hunting in a moment, we would,” as quoted by the Associated Press in Impassioned Agitator, Dec. 30, 1991. “Our goal is to get sport hunting in the same category as cock fighting and dog fighting,” as quoted in the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Oct. 8, 1991. And, “Sport hunting — the killing of wild animals as recreation — is fundamentally at odds with the values of a humane, just and caring society,” HSUS Website 2003.

And according to a report from the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA), Pacelle recently criticized in his blog, those who disagree with the group’s agenda, practically accusing them of not being in step with American culture, the report says.

Pacelle suggests that HSUS opponents should, “start adjusting to the evolving ethos in American culture. You’ll get ahead through innovation and adaptation, not stubborn adherence to custom or current business operations.” He also stated that other animal rights groups, “miss the bigger picture, and our interest in reaching mainstream Americans.”

“Mr. Pacelle’s own words pull the curtain back and unveil the real intent of the HSUS,” stated USSA President and CEO Bud Pidgeon. “He admits to attempting to ‘mainstream’ the group — at the same time he criticizes ‘custom.’ There’s only one reason to do this and that is to fundamentally change America to correspond to the HSUS agenda.”

The HSUS is also involved in a lawsuit to stop the delisting of the gray wolf as an endangered species in the Great Lakes states, where the wolf has rebounded to thriving and healthy populations, far exceeding the goals that were established in order to remove it from the list. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service — under the both the Bush and Obama Administrations — has determined that the wolf numbers are more than sufficient for it to be delisted. But that’s not good enough for the HSUS and other animal rights groups that are spending money on the lawsuit.

Could it be that the money being donated by people who are duped into believing they are helping doggies and kitties, is being used by these groups to fund those expensive anti-hunting lawsuits which tie up the courts with nonsense? We already know that a lot of the money feathers the nests of high-paid executives at the top of these groups.
Without an animal rights agenda, they’re out of their quarter-million-dollar salaries and would be slinging tofu at a vegan joint. You want veggie fries with that?

Just this week, PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) is in an uproar because President Obama swatted a fly. So, is swatting a fly (or a mosquito) now considered inhumane and abusive by animal rights’ standards? Are we now to adhere to the animal rights doctrine that mainstream America does not swat dirty, disease-carrying insects?

I see the animal rights brigade as nothing more than a noisy band of half-baked control freaks, led like sheep by cunning executives interested only in job security, who want to dictate how we spend our leisure time, what we eat and how we raise our own private pets. If you don’t like hunting, don’t hunt.

If you don’t like meat, eat weeds. Don’t want puppies, get your dog spayed. But why are they trying to shove their ridiculous agendas down our throats and make controversy out of “truly mainstream” activities that have been “custom” for centuries? It’s a free country, and if I want to hunt, eat meat, raise a litter of puppies and stomp on a bug, I should be able to without worrying about those whiny breast-beaters trying to outlaw it all.

Another recent hate letter was from Floyd, who thought my story about feeling the effects of approaching 50 just plain stunk and he wrote, “Write a book and do an autograph session with your raccoon hat and western jacket. Your description of stink is nothing compared to your articles.”

Well written, Floyd, but I beat you to it. Already working on my book — a collection of short stories, my favorite stinky articles. Hey, I might even name it that. “My Favorite Stinky Articles, by Marc Folco.” It’s got a nice ring to it. And thanks for the idea of wearing a coonskin hat for the book signing. Don’t have a coonskin one though, so I’ll have to wear my full-length coyote hat, made from a coyote that I shot (I’ll let you pet it if you buy a book). I don’t have a western jacket either, so I hope my buckskins will do (I’ll let you play with the fringe if you buy a book).

And if my articles stink so badly, why read them? If I think a writer stinks, I’m not wasting my valuable time reading his/her putrid rubbish from start to finish. I already know that fresh pile of doggie poo the puppy left on the carpet is going to stink, so I’m not going to sniff it.

Another reader was irate because I won a couple of humor awards from the New England Outdoor Writers’ Assoc. for 2008.
“Only you would make a joke out of killing a small defenseless deer — and your ilk rewarded that story on top of it. You and your kind are callous and disgusting,” M.S. said in reference to my story about shooting “teacup whitetails,” one of the award-winners. M.S. went on to say, “You are the most politically incorrect writer I have ever read!”

Well, my stories have won more than a dozen New England and national writing awards (many of them first place), so maybe you’re the one who is lacking a sense of humor. Laughter is the best medicine. Have a dose. Ain’t we got fun! I do have to agree with one thing. You hit the nail on the head — I am politically incorrect. And proud of it.

I am a man who tells it like it is, whether readers like it or not. I don’t write by anybody’s standards except my own, and those of the newspaper of course, where I can’t slander or use profanity. I wear my heart on my sleeve and say what I feel and think. Anybody who cowers to political correctness is a rump-smoocher in my book.

The end of “My Way,” as sung by Frank Sinatra, says it nicely:

“For what is a man?
What has he got?
If not himself
Then he has not
To say the things he truly feels
And not the words of one who kneels
The record shows
I took the blows
And did it my way.”

Marc Folco is the outdoor writer for The Standard Times. Contact him at

The message above was posted to West Virginia, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Missouri residents by the Sportsmen’s and Animal Owners’ Voting Alliance (SAOVA) on one of ten regional read only elists.

SAOVA is a nonpartisan volunteer group working to protect Americans from the legislative and political threats of radical animal rightists. It is the only national organization fighting this struggle for both sportsmen and animal owners, natural allies, in these arenas. Visit our website at for this program’s goals, methodology and list signup details.

postheadericon Al’s Birthday Party

Although Al’s 80th birthday was July 20th, we celebrated on the 25th.  Every time I put on a big party, I say never again as I just cannot control myself and tackle every project I have wanted to get done in order to make our home and grounds look beautiful.  Everything looked lovely except my nails which I hid all day as I had destroyed them with gardening and had no time to get them done.  Al kept reminding me as drove him crazy as well as myself, that he did not want a party. You could have fooled me as he just glowed when friends and family arrived to celebrate. 

A few pictures of the festivities:

al and bill


Al and his much older brother Bill!!!

Bill will kill me!


als family

From left:

Al’s son-in-law Ron, grandson Darren, Garette boyfriend of Audrey, and granddaughter Audrey 

 audrey and al                                           



Al and Audrey



bill and rosieAl’s brother bill and sister-in-law Rosie


Below is my brother Jerry and sister-in-law Diane  

brother jerry

Below are some of our dog show friendsthe dog crowdcharlotte and me

My friend Charlotte LaRosa and I have been friends for over fifty years.  Her mother and she bred German Shepherds and when I was through college, she arranged for me to get “Lottie,” who became my first Shepherd champion.  garden

The weather could not have been more beautiful. Everyone seemed to have a great time!

Introducing my grand nephew, darling Fritz, who is enjoying tearing up the sunflower bouquet given to Al by a very understanding friend. Fritz was having such a good time. Fritz and his parents, my niece Annie and her husband Eric, are buying our farm.  Eric and Al have spent the last two and one half weeks putting up fence here and at the farm for a horse paddock and round pen to be ready for the return of Buttercup and a new mare called Shotzi. We saved Shotzi from the horse slaughter auction; both horses are well broken but are at a trainers for a month so that they are bombproof because Annie wants me to teach her to ride and ultimately Fritz to ride. Eric, Al, and I do ride so we will have lots of fun. Next time I will post pictures of my very special “rescue” horse Stanley–an absolutely stunning seven year old liver Chestnut registered, newly castrated, Morgan. He is the horse of my “medicare” dreams!










And the best part of all:  Al and my own celebration:kissing