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So last year on Halloween day Im sitting at work taking to my friend SHO Girl from MA, both on IM and through E-Mail... at that point I hadnt met her yet, but we were very good friends already. near the end of the day we were talking about what wed be doing that night and weekend,.. She informed me that as she does most halloweens, she would be going to Salem with some friends to just hang out and walk around... and then told me I was welcomed to come along if I wanted. well, believe me.. I wanted to, but timing made it so I couldnt. it was the end of the day already, so I wouldnt have been able to head out till 5PM at best, I knew it was a 4 hour drive from my house to hers, but I hadnt even met these guys yet, therefor, I hadnt driven there yet. So I had no idea how long it would take me in extra time to figure it out for the first time, as well as find where ever I was going to be meeting people.... but I was so touched that I was invited along, and so bugged that I couldnt,.. that I swore Id go the next year, and I looked forward to it all year. durring the last year, I went to MA and met my friends there a number of times, they had been to NY to see me, and weve grown even closer. well this year was coming, so I got in touch with SHO Girl and asked her if she was going again this year. she said yes shed be going as usual, and I told her I wanted to go like I said I would the year before. so I get over there, helped her and sistah with the kids, took them trick-or-treating.... and then we headed out to Salem. Ill tell you what... depending on your mindset when you go, you may see it as a commercialized town trying to turn a buck off its histroy durring the time of year... and its true... there were plenty of venders and attractions to be seen if you were interested... but if you go in and just dont pay attention to that part, you can really enjoy the town for its history, and certainly doing so arround halloween makes it even cooler. that town is always a tourist thing, especially in october... but on halloween night itself, the place is flooded with people in costumes, places to eat, haunted houses, all sorts of stuff.. packed like warwick durring applefest.. (well maybe not that bad).. so the energy and excitement is there,.. but if you walk around and look at the old buildings... the churches, monuments, road names, and other sights that are always there, all year round, it will totally hit you differently. we went to the cemetary and found the stone in a wall surrounding it, which had the name of sistahs second sons (some number of great's) grandmother on it. she was aparently one of the women killed durring the witch trials. its much darker in those areas than on the main streets going in to the main square where everything else is "going on". I personally enjoied that historic stuff a lot more than the commercial aspects of the place, as I expected I would, and I didnt spend a dime the whole night there. I had a great time and Im glad I finally got to go with them and make up for last year. we did dress up,.. there were plenty of costumes to be seen all over.. plenty of sights both halloweenized and historic. it was fun all around.


Today was a big day for the SHO. last weekend I calculated where the numbers would be on friday night after getting home from work. today I woke up knowing I had 11.1 miles to go. I went out and drive around for a few minutes, figuring out just where to turn around so that the thing would flip to 200,000 as I pulled in my driveway and parked. I got video of it rolling over (good bass) (about a 20 MEG download), and a few pictures... maybe it seems a little silly, but its not every day you bring a car to this point. and if I have my way, I plan to bring it a lot farther.


Click picture for larger view


its been interesting to observe things on a political level leading up to this election. interesting on both whats going on today and peoples general opinions of it all. one of the topics I find the most interesting is naturally the whole war thing.. no one likes having to fight, but to say we didnt need to is just being silly in my opinion. we were attacked, and I believe we would have been attacked somehow, now matter who was president at the time.. Bush just happened to be the lucky recipient. so right off the bat, its easier for people to critisize any action he may have taken cause it happened in his term. going to war had to be done.. if we didnt, we would have lost a lot more. and while we sit there chasing some nut through caves, all of a sudden we find ourselves in iraq.. weather theres proof yet of nukes or not, based on common sense, you know that screwball over there was plotting and planning to take advantage of a distracted country spending its time in afganistan. had to be.. hes always been wanting to get us. and of course the people who dont agree with any of it will say there was no nukes in his posetion, and that Bush was only finishing what daddy didnt. well, even if there is truth to that,.. the fact is, when daddy ended our involvement in iraq the first time, it was on the terms that Sadam agree to weapons inspections by the UN. and what the media tends to forget in its usual efforts to lower the publics opinions of whoever is in office, is that he constantly refused to let inspecters in for nearly 10 years. couple that with nukes that mysteriusly vanished off our stockpile durring the Clinton administration, and I think it was a good call to cover our asses and watch our backs durring this war on terror... Sadams been involved in terror before, and theres no reason to believe he had turned over a new leaf.

now, I really find it interesting that people in different branches of the military have general opinions among their branch, which seem to differ from other branches. and I have a good idea why. I know quite a few people who have enlisted in the past 10 years. and they all generally have the same motives depending on what they signed up for. Ive noticed that in general, a person signing up for the Air Force, is generally looking for a job and education. they are promised a garunteed job and money for education for however log they remain in the service... Ive noticed that people that sign up for the Marines generally want to train for the opertunity to kick ass one day... then it would seem people who sign up for the Army are split between those 2 ideals. talking to people I know in each one of those services today, Ive noticed those matching trends in how they and their fellow recruits feel towards the current situations. the war, Bushes ideas and actions, and so on. I do have to say those who signed up for an easy way to have a job are against the war and Bush. why? cause they are afraid of being shipped off I guess. In my opinion its a little babyish to badmouth the president just because you are afraid you might have to actually perform a task that you voluntarilly signed up for... ever since I was in high school, Air Force and some Army recruiters were visitng the schools and calling homes with the promise of an "easy ride" in simplest words. in and out in 4 years, dont you worry about anything, once you are at your job, you wont even remember its military, were safe from any war and so on. Talking to friends that are home from the Marines for a while before going back out.. all of the ones I talked to, and their friends in with them, were Pro-Bush and had no problems being over seas. they might not WANT to be at war, no one does. but they know it has to be done and this is why they signed up. and as far as Army mentality goes.. the people I know who went in for simple functions arent really happy with the president right now, and those who went in to be trained to be in a tank someplace, are having no problems accepting what they have to do. I even know a guy who signed up for the Army AFTER we were at war, because he wanted to serve his country. he just got back from Basic and all that starter stuff, and hes being sent over seas next week.

I dont generally like either presidential choice because there are things that bug me about both. but I think its fairly obvious that if Kerry were to get in and start pulling troops, that we will be attacked again very soon. I dont like some of Bushes ideas about abortion, and Religion, but this war stuff had to be done. the people that signed up to serve their country are getting to do so and are proud to do it. the people that were looking for a way to secure employment were not looking to serve their country, they were looking to serve themselvs and now they are angry cause they might have to actually earn that label that they served their country, when in most cases, that tag comes as a benefit while sitting at a desk or working in a garage. and the real problem here as usual, is the media. they report only what will bring controversy and belittlement. when my neighbors have been home from the Marines, what they tell me goes on is SO far from what the papers and news stations report that it should be a crime to print or say it. its almost pure lies. people that sign up for the service know the risk involved. for a long time the risk hasnt been much concern. now it is. you cant blame anyone but yourself for being where you are now. thats your REAL JOB.

I started out this year not knowing who I was going to vote for.. I didnt like either guy much at all. I didnt like Bush for his side tracked FCC crapola after the superbowl, and how it was almost feeling like rights were being trampled on. I didnt like Kerrys "I can do it all better" childish nonsense either. as my mother said when talking with her.. when watching who wants to be a millionare, its a lot easier to know all the answers when you ARENT actually in the hot seat. I generally side with republican, mainly cause I like to keep the money I earn and not see it go to lazy shits collecting checks. as time went on and information was gathered... the FCC thing sorta got brushed off the focus and I didnt have a biased feeling about silly things like that. I was then able to concentrate on the important issues and the facts behind them to help me make a decision. unfortionately you cant just listen to what these guys say, or list as an agenda to make up your mind.. you need to listen to their words and put together a logical compilation of data based on the way they say it, and their underlying attitudes on the subjects. I dont care for Kerrys lies and flip flopping claims that seem to change simply to conflict anything Bush says. Kerry basically said the war was a mistake when Bush said it had reason.. then when Bush said that some mistakes may have been made, Kerry started up with well, maybe part of this war was the right thing.. I dont dig that. Id rather have a president that mispronounces a word each time he says it, than to change its definition each time. I started to not like Kerrys childish accusations about things like Bush moving businesses out of the US to making us have less jobs... when in reality, Bush didnt really have any businesses he COULD move out, and his tax cuts helped create more jobs than we had before.... meanwhile, you have Kerry married to this rich Heinz family member, and if you pick up any bottle of Heinz product, youll see a big "Made in Mexico" or "Made in Canada" stamp on it cause thats where all the factories are... in the end I found myself supporting Bush more, without even realizing it. I guess the biggest decider for me was the fact that no one I talked to or listened to could tell me reasons TO vote for Kerry.. they could only spool off reasons NOT to vote for Bush... such as.. the draft.. well.. theres no garuntee either way that it will or wont happen no matter who wins. if it becomes a necesity, then its gonna happen. it sucks, but thats how it is... such as oil.. hey.. true motive or not... if we dont fight for it, we wont get it anymore and we NEED it.. I dont care who you are. Republican, Democrat, Indipendant. unless youre riding a bicycle everyplace, you need it.. and if we dont have it, we will pay a lot more for it than we are now. I wish I could have found enough reason to vote for a 3rd party this year.. I really do.. but I didnt care for the sides of a lot of things they were leaning towards this time, and as much as we need a statement showing that whatever percent of the american people ARE interested in a third party... I just felt that this wasnt the year to do it. theres too much going on that needs solid experience by a bigger party. leaving the voting booth and durring the day, I still didnt feel I made a choice I was happy with... Ive felt like it was a checkmate situation for months. like wed be screwed no matter who won... but later last night, I saw an interview with Rudy Giuliani,.. the guy that made NYC a better place hands down, no logical arguement can deny it. and I listed to him support the presidents roll played by Bush over the last 4 years, for all of the same reasons I did.. and I suddenly found myself feeling a lot better about my choice. and this is 1 guy I said I would no doubt vote for if he ever ran for president.. and Ive been hearing rummors that he just might do that in 2008. I hope thats true. I believe he will be one of the best leaders we could ask for. if he gets in office, I think there might just be hope for this country.


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