Shelly's Cafe

Settle in, grab a cup of coffee and enjoy your stay here at Shelly's. The pie is great, the coffee pot is always on and soon you will find this to be the best place in town. SOON TO BE AMERICA'S MOST READ BLOG

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

My First U-Tube

For a century or more I wanted to produce a slide show for my photos instead of showing them individually. Since I did a photo shoot for my friends 50th anniversary and needed to put them on a disc, I decided this techno challenged holdover needed to move into the new millennium.

I will admit it took a whole day and half the night to finish this project, but hopefully I learned enough to do it again--using just a half day's time.

For the followers of both Shelly's Cafe and Shadows of America blogs I must apologize but MS issues slowed me down. I promise to try and keep up on both blogs now that I am feeling better

Well, here it is. Love it or hate it.

Thursday, June 18, 2009


Occasionally I look at the calender and break out in a cold sweat. I realize that object hanging on my door is just heavy paper stock with pretty pictures, but recently flipping its pages has caused the passing of time to shoot off into hyper drive.

January, February, March so forth and so on—it all moves through this time frame we call days, weeks and months. So now the door of the cafe is covered with dust, old paper cups and plastic trash bags. The winds of time have blown scattered thoughts into a heap of unrecognizable trash blocking the entrance.

I have spent the last few days attempting to tidy up the place, pour out the old coffee from the coffee maker, and put some rhubarb pie on the shelf. Perhaps a few new customers may stop by if we put some smooth jazz on the new sound system.

So, what's been going down? Well some of you know I have been lured into the world of high finances, rolling the dice and gambling online, hoping to scare up a few dollars here and there. The game—E-bay. Odds were good for a while as I dug through box after box of old, rare and vintage books, then a pile of collector “stuff” that always filled up one corner after another since after I undertook the joys of apartment living.

Truth is I had a goal in mind and met stage one rather quickly and with great joy. I purchased a $700 plus scanner to restore old photographs, slides and negatives. I started first by looking at downsized hundred dollar film scanners, which more or less were toys. As I kept reading articles by those who know more than myself, I was forced to slam on the brakes before the next level, which would have been over a thousand dollars. The scanner is an Epson 750 Pro, for those who are interested. With it came three separate programs such as Photo Shop and Silverfast for restoring and editing film and/or digital pictures.

As you can see above, and sorry I only kept one "before" picture (PLEASE CLICK ON BEFORE PICTURE OF THE GIRL), but believe me the other photographs were in pretty rough shape, the results are pretty amazing. There is a learning curve and climbing though the curves has become a hair pulling event, but soon there will be victory and knowledge will fill my damaged brain.

I haven't even started on the hundreds of slides and negatives strewn about my room, but time will handle that problem also. Right now, between learning and real life, I am still working the e-bay game trying to reach goal number two--a new computer to run all the programs I have downloaded. My Sony is still a great computer, but it was built before duo processors and other nice things that live in the black box which I know not what makes it tick. I will avoid trying to speak Geek.

There is always a great story. I write many of them, but this is a story of victory because as most of you know I live on a very limited income. There is no good months or bad months, just months of little chunks of government dollars. The idea of going into a business that required well over a thousand dollars was to me, impossible, but E-bay, plus all my junque has allowed this to happen. I hope by mid-July to have the new hand built computer sitting under my desk. If not, then I will continue to trudge on until that goal is met. To me, what has already happened is not only a blessing, but a miracle.

In the months to come I hope to start a new blog site and download rescued orphaned photos that time has erased. Old photos can be very telling. The car guy above is one of many unknown people who once existed, who, well likely nobody knows, but now he is with us again. Of course, as a business, I want to restore family photos, slides and negatives to climb out of the government sponsored poverty program.

Not to worry, a few stories and photos will grace the walls of Shelly's Cafe. So here I am again. So as I wave howdy, I must return to the decades time has forgotten.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Chevy, Chrysler and the American Hero

I have three somewhat odd conundrums that have been rolling through my economy-sized brain all day. Two of them have been talked about on conservative talk radio since I first rubbed the sleep from my eyes this morning and the other, well it may be a much over looked historical fact. The conundrum? Can I tie all three into one blog to prevent over-taxing my brain's wiring.

First, we know Obama, who yesterday was feeling his Cheerios, a General Mills product, fired CEO Rick Wagoner a General Motors product. The implementation of a CEO's demise is a job usually performed by stock owners, but not this time. Even with Wagoner's hard-fisted approach of shutting down 14 auto plants and laying off thousands of workers,who likely will be flipping burgers or handing out shopping carts at Wal Mart, Mr. Obama still believes he didn't get the bang for our his bucks. After discussing the problem in length with his wife Michelle and two children, he picked up the phone and called the GM Hot Line and after punching one for English, two for Español, three for warranty, four for your nearest dealer, he finally found the cleaning lady, who in turn left a termination Sticky-note on Wagoner's desk.

So today in his best form, Obama walked up to the Teleprompter and said, “America, kiss my grits. You will probably not like my decision, but since I live in the White House now, we are doing things my way. If you think GM is messed up, which I concur that it is, wait till you see what I am going to do with Chrysler.”

At that time stocks once again plummeted as fears swept across Wall Street. At the end of the day GM stocks were selling at an unheard of $2.71 a share. After his kiss my grits speech he called Hillary and told her if she wanted inside info on some new cattle market futures, go buy GM stock since he was sure he could resurrect the doomed company by making green cars.

Obama later told the press he would work with Congress on a program to encourage consumers to replace old, less fuel-efficient cars with newer, cleaner vehicles. This is Obama's answer to two stolen chickens in every pot, a sort of hot pot if you will. America will be forced to trade in old beaters that are finally paid for and purchase Ethanol sipping Chevy Vegas.

On a similar note, Chrysler will be forced to join hands with Fiat. Now folks do you know about Fiats? I do. One of my first decent jobs as a young adult was to work for a dealership that sold Fiats. They had to be the crapiest vehicle ever shoved down the throats of Americans back in the 1970's, short of the Renault, Simca and the Austin American.

About the same time I worked for the dealer Fiat shed themselves of the 1100D Sedan, to a more sporty 124 model and the incredible self destructing Fiat 750. So what, you ask, did Fiat do with all the tooling for the 1100 sedan. Hold on to your hats—they sold them to Yugoslavia to be turned into the (you guessed it), the YUGO. Americas first weeny, liberal attracting, pile of highway destruction, ever to grace the American highways.

Do you see where this column is heading. Obama is hoping GM will return the consumer to the days of the dreaded Chevrolet Vega and Fiat Yugos with a Chrysler hemi. Not. You will be lucky to get a weasly little four cylinder that is so laden down with smog controls that the tight Lycra pants weinies on bicycles will leave you in the dust.

The rest I will leave to your deep fearful imagination. Stephen King would be pleased. So now we have the two train wrecks of the American way of life this morning, which is becoming quite common from the Obama administration, but what was the third item on my list today. Charlie Brown!

Charlie Brown was America's lovable nudnick. As many times as he tried take one for the team, his proverbial football was pulled away at the last minute. He often ended up seeking professional help from Doc Lucy, spending his last nickel on advice he should know would cut him to the quick. Well on this day in history the hopeless little man clobbered in his winning home run, not only hitting the ball, but bringing his team to victory as well.

So can I tie in the lovable Charlie Brown hitting his first comic strip league home run to Barack Obama's first attempt at taking a swing at General Motors and Chrysler? Zeech, how great do you think I am. Charlie, here's to your victory. Barack, well here is to your national fudge. May Lucy always pull the proverbial ball out from your wild kicks.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Earth Hour 2009

Friday, March 27, 2009

Not one to be on top of ecological celebrations, I only discovered the world-wide fantasy called Earth Hour that is to be blasted across my wonderful planet so satellites floating in the heavens above can say we too can be a “dark continent.” Sorry Africa, I needed that term.

The World Wildlife Fund
, sponsors of the "Grab Your Light Switch and Shake It Baby," wants you to turn off your nonessential lights between 8:30 and 9:30 Saturday night. Now I have no idea what time zones they are talking about. I presume it is wherever you are.

Carter Roberts, chief executive of the World Wildlife Fund said, "Earth Hour makes a powerful statement that the world is going to solve this problem by walking around in the dark. We environmentalists have been doing it for years.”

Meanwhile a best selling book that has been in print for years states, "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. *

When asked about that quote, a high ranking unnamed source from the WWF said he thought the verse was vaguely familiar, perhaps from Walden's Pond, but wasn't quite sure what it meant, so he quickly moved back to the subject of darkness.

“Even McDonald's will soften their yellow arches for that hour, along with Jolly Jack's Burger Style Fish & Chips, Martha's Pizza and Beer Garden and Green Pastures Health Food Emporium,” the spokesperson went on to say.

It has been reported that children can line up and help an odd looking clown turn down the lights of the Golden Arches on notch at a time or until swarms of lost moths begin to smother the youngsters. Helping Birds Migrate, a nonprofit organization out of Mojave California, said the darkness may cause millions of migrating hummingbirds and assorted butterflies to loose their bearings and end up crashing into mountains. “This is an important time of year for the little fellas and I think those guys are hurting our ecology, not helping,” said Boris Gashouse, founder of the organization.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon encouraged those who chose darkness rather than light, to reach a fair and effective climate change tax agreement and promoted the Earth Hour participation in a video posted this month on the event's YouTube channel.

Still there may bit of sanity left in America but it may be hard to find tomorrow night. Across this continent people like suburban Philadelphia ice cream shop owner Bob Gerenser, 56, believes global warming is based on faulty science and calls Earth Hour "nonsense,” so the resident of New Hope, Pa., and owner of Gerenser's Exotic Ice Cream planned to illuminate his store with extra theatrical lighting. "I'm going to get everyone I know in my neighborhood to turn on every light they possibly can to waste as much electricity as possible to underline the absurdity of this action ... by being absurd," he said.

Others like Gerenser use the insane to produce sanity, but we here at the cafe will help find humanities answer for hope. I, Micheala will be asking the population to celebrate the warmth and beauty of light. At 8:30 p.m., put your favorite rock group's CD from a bygone era on your boom box and go outside with your Bick lighter ablaze and wave it to and fro with the music in case one of those CIA spy satellites is passing your home from high above. Nothing beats the smell of good clean butane, so let them blaze America!

If you want to take this protest one step further, march down to your local novelty store where they sell those luminescent necklaces, teeth and jacket pins you see at every 4th of July event. Ask the clerk for a large green wienie and if they don't carry large green wienies, craft one out of Styrofoam, the kind that never degrades, and wrap hundreds of those cheap necklaces round about your handmade creation and toss it to the wind while shouting," I'm garsh darn made and won't take global warming nuts anymore.”

Good luck fellow Americans

*Matthew 5: 13-16

Thursday, March 26, 2009


Are you hungry? Times getting rough? Had to give back your AIG bonus and your kids are stilling calling to borrow a few Thou? Buddy can ya spare a hundred? Is that what's bothering you Bunky--Well, lift your head up high and take a walk in the sun with dignity and stick-to-it-ness and ya show the world, ya show the world where to get off and you'll never give up, never give up, never give up...that ship!

I digress.

We all know the economy is bad because George Bush legislated new Fanny Mae rules years before he took office, giving forcing all the poor and downtrodden to take out $95,000 loans for ghetto housing than wasn't worth $25,000. All this while Barney Frank was screaming, "stop this madness, you will kill the economy."

It certainly did happen that way because I looked into my Buck Rogers of the 22nd Century looking glass and read the Democratic Socialist States Collective Public Schools textbooks. And here I am in 2009, totally ignorant of the bill of goods my biracial slave master has been trying to sell me while flogging me with stimulus whips.

Back to hard times. According to my Mother Earth Magazine article, “Surviving Hard Times for Grown Up Hippies” you don't have to cash in your Government War Bonds if you live in Ohio, or maybe even a few other select states. Seems like Governor Strickland has teamed up with the Obama administration and started dishing out food stamps to the wealthy.

Yup, if you have a $300,000 house, drive a Mercedes and have $80,000 in the bank, you may be a redneck, ooops wrong line—you may be on food stamps. It seems there are a few in this fine rusty, old state who have learned the hidden secret of fine dinning. Just like a golden Fanny Mae loan, you no longer have to divulge your assets or the amount of cold hard cash stashed away in the First National Bank of Park Avenue.

This report flashed all over Ohio's television screens on the News Alive at Five last week and the torrid tale even made it to the CNN News Desk, that a woman who lived in the above abode with cash a flowing has been driving down to the Piggly Wiggly with food card in hand. Now my investigations have not been able to reveal the name or address of the Warren County woman, who has done nothing illegal (can you hear me Sir Dodd), nor of any other culprits. Sorry.

As of this moment there are no Acorn picketers demanding the slightly comfortable welfare recipients give the money back to Ohio via the Federal Government, nor likely will there be. But I must be frank, or Shelly--I receive a food card ( stamps are so passé ), but I live well under the poverty line and still waiting for the trickle up economy to save me. I was forced to forfeit the assets from the sale of my house when I became disabled. It certainly was not a $300,000 house like the babe from Warren. So the government keeps me in poverty and tosses a bit of help in the way of a food card.

I'm not crying, but Obama did make me weep with warm tears of joy last week when I received the letter stating the stimulus package has now raised my allotment of food I can purchase every month. Believe me folks it sure wasn't by very much, but now I am about $20 less poor richer now.

Which leads me to wonder, just how much money does that lady, whose name and address I do not know, make in food stamps per month. How many groceries can she stuff in that Mercedes before she is outed. Acorn, where are you when we need you.

This blog can also be seen on my blog page @
We Surround Them USA

Sunday, March 22, 2009


A few days ago I joined a group called We Surround Them USA. Glen Beck started the social network and it is catching on across the nation at a pretty good clip. I sent an e-mail to most everyone on my mailing list and as always I make sure it is pretty darn important as not to waste your time.

Within the site there is a photo page (yipee!) And a daily blog. Yesterday I penned a repentant article for not writing in months–adding that I promised to try harder. Well lo and behold things happened and I wrote again today. I thought maybe I will jump between Shelly's Cafe to The Other Side of The Cafe from time to time, such as today.

This is yesterday's blurb followed by today's. What do you think. Should I energize both blogs, or just one?

Saturday March 21, 2009
As many of my friends know I have kept a blog going for numerous years. Sadly within the last year my MS has slowed down my writing. Tis' a shame indeed--but can I return to a writers life? We shall see.

My original blog ( ) is somewhat non-political because that represents the storyteller part of my life. I want to bring a smile to all segments of society with my previously published works. But, before I got paid to tell stories I made a living by writing political satire. The Clinton years gave me fodder beyond belief, plus my California days never let me down for local politics.

Well, we are now in the Clinton days redux, plus a new action figure, Barrack Obbama, Obaaama,Obbamma , er Obama whose name has not been added to any spell checks I have used. During my run as a satirist I managed to get audited--a favorite tactic used against the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy. Now since I have discovered the world of poverty, the man can't get me on tax fraud. Not to fear, DC has an ample supply to pull from.

So, as Paul Harvey would say, this is page one. Stay tuned for page two .

Sunday March 22, 2009
Every morning after I rub the sleep from my eyes and carefully begin a stumbling journey towards the coffee pot, then in turn stumble back towards my computer--If I may step aside from my thought train for a moment, for my new readers who may not be aware of my existence I have Multiple Sclerosis, so I use the word stumble very literally. Back aboard the thought train.

After my arrival at the computer with coffee in hand I delete all the ads for new wonder supplements and Ugg boots then read the good "stuff." Several years ago I stumbled upon, er discovered the Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day where occasionally I find little tid-bits of the English language, which as a writer I often destroyed for lack of anything better to do. When I was a semi-weekly newspaper columnist my readers told my they like the play on words that once seemed to come natural to me. But lately the play on words turned to war with words.

So toady, Sunday, the 22nd of March I awoke rather late and missed my Moody Church service on the radio. My body must have needed the sleep since I passed out on the recliner last night while watching a bio on Carol Burnette who always forced me to laugh until I snorted milk from my nose or caused me to run to the bathroom as not to have an accident. She made people laugh because she held her sidekicks as equals but most importantly she took life's adversities and looked them face on. Without creating a whole page on her life let me just say she inspired me back then and her bio inspired me today.

So, after sleeping to long, then killing my whole morning finishing off where sleep overtook me last night, (here we go again) I stumbled to the computer, erased the maddening nonsense of sending this sad story to ten other people, or having angels decorate my life if twenty other women.....................blah, blah, blah, hit the Webster site expecting some previously unknown word which would never be used in my conversation in a million lifetimes.

But, and this is the but we have so desperately been waiting for after numerous paragraphs of introduction. Sorry, I love suspense. The word was recrudescence (ree-kroo-DESS-uns), which means: a new outbreak after a period of abatement or inactivity: renewal. Yesterday I admitted that my desire to write had tanked. Perhaps just because I felt my words fell upon fallow grounds, perhaps it was laziness. Maybe visiting this exciting Internet site may also be the place to stand up, er stumble up, and say I can. Others have and with God's mercy, I shall too.

So recrudescence, do your magic.

P.S--for some reason I am unable to find a direct Internet address for We Surround Them USA.
Perhaps if you Google them you may get to the site