The Early Years: 1941-1959 (Patti Blackledge Blide, BS)
United States Naval Academy: 1959-1963 (Olen Thompson, USNA '63)
Air Force Weapons Laboratory:
1965-1968 (John Generosa)
Air Force Academy - Mathematics
Department: 1968-1972 (Mike Gray, USMA '65)
Software Quality Assurance
Subcommittee (Maysa Peterson, LANL)
Last Thursday Book Club (Rob Easterling)
Unsolicited Remarks (Unsolicited Attendees)
Sandia National Laboratories: 1983-2004 (David Carlson, Director)
Farewell Tour (Mike Blackledge & the Surety Pips)
Reflections and Plans
An American businessman was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them. The Mexican replied only a little while. The American then asked why didn't he stay out longer and catch more fish? The Mexican said he had enough to support his family's immediate needs. The American then asked, but what do you do with the rest of your time? The Mexican fisherman said, "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos, I have a full and busy life, señor."
The American scoffed, "I am a Stanford MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat with the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You could leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually NYC where you will run your expanding enterprise."
The Mexican fisherman asked, "But señor, how long will this all take?" To which the American replied, "15-20 years."
"But what then, señor? "
The American laughed and said that's the best part. When the time is right you would announce an IPO (float the company on the stock exchange) and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich - you would make millions.
"Millions, señor? Then what?"
The American said, "Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you could sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos.
over 35 should be dead.
AIN'T IT THE TRUTH
One evening a boy was talking to his grandfather about current events. He asked what he thought about the shootings at schools, the computer age, and just things in general.
The granddad replied, "Well, let me think a minute...I was born before television, penicillin, polio shots, frozen foods, Xerox, contact lenses, Frisbees and the pill. There weren't things like radar, credit cards, laser beams or ball-point pens. Man had not invented dishwashers, clothes dryers, electric blankets, air conditioners, pantyhose and he hadn't walked on the moon.
Your Grandmother and I got married first -- then lived together. Every family had a father and a mother, and every boy over 14 had a rifle that his dad taught him how to use and respect.
Until I was 25, I called every man older than I, 'Sir' -- and after I turned 25, I still called policemen and every man with a title, 'Sir.'
Sundays were set aside for going to church as a family, helping those in need, and just visiting with family or neighbors.
We were before computer-dating, dual careers, daycare centers, and group therapy.
We thought fast food was what people ate during Lent. Having a meaningful relationship meant getting along with your cousins.
Draft dodgers were people who closed their front doors when the evening breeze started.
Time-sharing meant time the family spent together in the evenings and weekends -- not condominiums. We never heard of FM radios, tape decks, CDs, electric typewriters, yogurt, or guys wearing earrings. We listened to the Big Bands, Jack Benny, and the President's speeches on radio. I don't ever remember any kid blowing his brains out listening to Tommy Dorsey.
If you saw anything with 'Made in Japan' on it, it was junk. The term 'making out' referred to how you did on your school exam. Pizza Hut, McDonald's, and instant coffee were unheard of. We had 5 & 10-cent stores where you could actually buy things for 5 and 10 cents. Ice cream cones, phone calls, rides on a streetcar, and a Pepsi were all a nickel. And if you didn't want to splurge, you could spend your nickel on enough stamps to mail a letter plus two postcards.
You could buy a new Chevy Coupe for $600, but who could afford one? Too bad, because gas was 11 cents a gallon. In my day, 'grass' was mowed, 'coke' was a cold drink, 'pot' was something your mother cooked in, and 'rock music' was your grandmother's lullaby. 'Aids' were helpers in the Principal's office, 'chip' meant a piece of wood, 'hardware' was found in a hardware store, and 'software' wasn't even a word.
And we were the last generation that was so dumb as to think a lady needed a husband to have a baby. No wonder people call us old and confused - and say there is such a generation gap.
And I'm only 59 years old!
Updated 5 December 2004 Return to Mike's Home Page