July 5 will mark the seven-year anniversary of the most horrific day in the lives of my wife and I, a day no parent should have to endure. Eventually, the ordeal had a happy ending, but it was touch and go for a while. Subsequently, I shared our experiences in a blog entitled “My Hero.”

As the aforementioned anniversary approaches I would like to re-publish the blog as I do every year at this time. (Some of you are new followers of my blogs and may not have seen it.) I believe it is as inspirational now as it was then. Perhaps, you could forward it to a friend or relative who has suffered a stroke and might benefit from reading it. So, read and enjoy “My Hero.”

Who is your hero? Who has inspired you by exhibiting extreme courage and achievement in the face of adversity? Is it a historical figure, like George Washington or Abraham Lincoln, or a religious figure, like Moses, Jesus or Muhammed, or maybe, a civil rights icon, like Martin Luther King or Nelson Mandela? Or, perhaps, it might be an ordinary person you know or know of who, while not famous, has accomplished something so truly remarkable, against such long odds that you are truly inspired. Not all of us can point to such a person, but I can. It is someone very close to me that I have known all his life. It is my son, Matt.

It all began on July 5, 2015, a day I will never forget. Like the JFK assassination and the 9/11 terrorist attacks I will never forget where I was and what I was doing when I heard the awful news. It was a typical summer’s day in the NY area, bright and sunny. Matt was enjoying a family day with some friends and his lovely wife and two children at a local club. Suddenly, after swimming in the lake he became dizzy, lost vision in one eye and collapsed. He had suffered a dissection of his carotid artery, which had triggered a massive stroke.

Luckily, there was a doctor present. He immediately recognized what was happening and knew exactly what to do. This doctor accompanied Matt in the ambulance and stayed with him at the local hospital to ensure the ER doctors gave him the clot-buster shot and other appropriate treatment, including emergency surgery to remove the clot within the five-six-hour window that is considered to be optimal for treating strokes. This certainly mitigated the effects of the stroke and may even have saved his life.

My wife and I were eating dinner with friends at a local restaurant when we got the shocking telephone call that Matt had suffered a stroke. It seemed impossible. Matt was only 40 and in excellent physical condition. He worked out regularly, ran, and practiced jujitsu. The caller did not know any details, not even if Matt were alive. If you’re a parent, you know that type of telephone call is as bad as it gets. Luckily, our friends insisted on driving us to the hospital in Westchester to which Matt was being transported (the Westchester Trauma Center). I don’t think I was in any condition to drive. We arrived at more or less the same time as Matt. We were able to see him and ascertain that although he was in very serious condition, he was alive. After the surgery he was only able to breathe with the aid of a ventilator, and his skin was the color of white porcelain.

Over the next few days the medical news was very dire. The doctors confirmed that Matt had, indeed, suffered a massive stroke. He was not conscious; he was paralyzed on his right side; he might need a craniotomy; he was blind in his left eye; and he had only partial vision in his right eye. He was in such bad shape that I felt elated a few days later when I squeezed his hand and felt him squeeze mine back.

The doctors told us he was facing a long, arduous recovery, one – two weeks at the hospital followed by six to nine months at a rehab facility. In addition, they said there was a good possibility that he would never recognize us, speak, or be able to walk unassisted. As far as returning to a normal life as a husband and father and resuming his career as a senior research analyst, that was seemingly too unrealistic to even contemplate. (Later, Matt told us that one of the doctors had flat-out told him he would not recover sufficiently to do so. When we asked him if that had bothered him, he said “no, I knew he was wrong.”). I realize that doctors feel compelled to disclose all possibilities, but there is a natural tendency to focus on the most negative ones, and that was an extremely disturbing prognosis.

Over the next year. Matt made a remarkable recovery. He was discharged from the hospital in only six days and transferred to Burke for rehab. Not only did he have to rehabilitate himself physically, but he also had to rehab his mind and his memory. At first, he didn’t even recall very basic elements of his life, such as the names of his wife and children and his current address. He had to relearn how to speak. His rate of progress was beyond anyone’s most optimistic expectations. He attacked his rehab with a vengeance. He attended every session. He never once told them he was in too much pain, too tired, or not in the mood, as many rehab patients do. Many times he would cut short our visit by telling us he had to leave for a rehab session. If they told him to do ten of something, he would do 15. He would complete the most tedious and frustrating of tasks without complaint. His course of rehab included robotics, which helped considerably. Of course, it helped that he was only 40 years old and in excellent physical condition, but, nevertheless, he astounded the doctors, the therapists, and, indeed, even us with his progress. In August 2016, after less than one month at Burke, he was discharged. For a while, he continued to undergo private rehab once a week. Now, he exercises by running.


Matt’s astounding recovery included the following accomplishments:

1. He completed his rehab at Burke and returned home to his family well ahead of schedule.
2. The day he was discharged he accompanied his wife and son to Nassau Coliseum, which was over a one-hour drive, to see Billy Joel’s last concert there.
3. He climbed up to the top of the Statue of Liberty.
4. He has resumed his career as a senior research analyst at a Wall Street firm. This is a remarkable achievement since his job is very demanding, requiring many hours of complex analysis, a high level of prolonged concentration, high-level meetings with clients, and travel.
5. He has completed the NYC marathon and various half marathons and works out regularly. How many non-stroke victims can say that?
6. Most importantly, has resumed his role as husband and father, and my wife and I have our son back.

During his recovery period Matt was fond of saying his full-time job was to get better. He applied the same single-minded determination and dedication to that task as he has to everything else in his life. He is not all the way back to where he was, but if you were to meet him today for the first time you would likely not realize that he had suffered a massive stroke only a few years ago.

My wife and I know that Matt was extremely lucky that there was a doctor present who ensured he received the immediate care he needed as well as benefiting from an amazing support system of friends, relatives and colleagues, and, for that, we will be eternally grateful. However, the determination with which he attacked his rehab virtually willing himself to get better was nothing short of amazing!

We have always been very proud of Matt, but, now, he is and will always be, our hero.”

Even now, seven years later, it is hard for me to read this blog without getting emotional. We know we dodged a major bullet. Matt has pretty much returned to normalcy, although he is still blind in one eye and has a weakness in his right hand. However, I remain optimistic that one day medical science will progress to the point that he will regain his sight. Who knows?

We have suggested to Matt that he could become an inspirational speaker to give others the benefit of his experience. Although he has made a couple of appearances with a friend who was also a stroke victim, for now, he has chosen to focus on his family and career.

Alternatively, his experience would make a fine inspirational movie, although Hollywood would probably dismiss it as too unrealistic. In any case, read it and be inspired.



Below please find a list of the significant historical events that have occurred during the month of June.

6/2/1937 – The Duke of Windsor, who, as Edward VII, had abdicated the throne of England, married Wallis Warfield Simpson, a commoner and a divorcee.
6/3/1972 – Sally Jan Priesand became the first female ordained rabbi in the US.
6/3/1989 – The Ayatollah Khomeini, notorious leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, died.
6/4/1989 – Chinese government troops fired on unarmed demonstrators in Tiananmen Square in Beijing. Upwards of 3,000 were killed; an additional 1,600 were imprisoned; and 27 were later executed.
6/5/1968 – Following a campaign speech Robert Kennedy was assassinated at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles.
6/6/1944 – D-Day, one of the most significant battles in WWII. (Please see my previous blog for details.)
6/8/1874 – Cochise, one of the most notorious of Apache Indian leaders, died while living on the Chiricahua Reservation in AZ.
6/9/1898 – Great Britain signed a 99-year lease for Hong Kong. Control of the colony reverted to China at midnight, June 30, 1997.
6/12/1898 – The Philippine Islands declared their independence from Spain leading to the US’s invasion and occupation.
6/12/1963 – Civil rights leader Medgar Evers was assassinated in Jackson, MS, sparking widespread outrage and providing the impetus for comprehensive civil rights laws.
6/13/1966 – In “Miranda v. AZ,” the Supreme Court ruled that the police are required to apprise a suspect of his right to remain silent prior to being questioned.
6/14/1777 – John Adams introduced a resolution to establish an official flag for the 13 colonies. We celebrate this date as “Flag Day.”
6/15/1215 – England’s King John agreed to a charter, known as the Magna Carta, which granted certain rights and liberties to English nobles, and which has served as the basis for all democracies since.
6/17/1972 – Five GOP operatives were caught breaking into the DNC offices in the Watergate Hotel. Eventually, this precipitated a chain of events, which culminated in the resignation of President Nixon.
6/18/1812 – Congress declared war on Great Britain, commencing the War of 1812.
6/18/1815 – England and its allies defeated France decisively in the Battle of Waterloo, which effectively ended Napoleon’s reign as Emperor of France and precipitated his exile.
6/18/1983 – Dr. Sally Ride became the first American woman in space.
6/19/1953 – Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were executed for the crime of selling information about the atomic bomb to the Soviet Union. They were not only the first married couple to be executed together in the US, but also the first US citizens to be executed for espionage.
6/24/1948 – The Soviet Union commenced its blockade of West Berlin. Eventually, the US and its allies broke the blockade with a massive airlift.
6/25/1876 – General George Custer and all soldiers under his command were slaughtered at the Little Bighorn by thousands of Sioux in what became known as “Custer’s Last Stand.”
6/25/1950 – North Korea attacked South Korea beginning the Korean Conflict, which lasted three years.
6/26/1945 – The UN Charter was signed by 50 nations in San Francisco.
6/28/1914 – Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the Crown Price of Austria and his wife, were assassinated in Sarajevo, by a Serbian nationalist, Gavrilo Princip, which set off a chain of events that culminated in WWI.
6/28/1919 – The Treaty of Versailles was signed, which marked the official end of WWI.
6/30/1971 – The 26th Amendment to the Constitution was enacted, which extended the right to vote to all US citizens age 18 and older.

Birthdays – Brigham Young, patriarch of the Mormon church and founder of the state of Utah, 6/1/1801 in Whittingham, VT; Norma Jean Mortensen, aka Marilyn Monroe, 6/1/1926 in Los Angeles; Marquis de Sade, his name is the origin of the word, sadism, due to his penchant for extreme cruelty and violence, 6/2/1740 in Paris; Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederacy, 6/3/1808 in Todd County, KY; King George III, ruler of England during the Revolutionary War, 6/4/1738; Adam Smith, renowned philosopher and economist, 6/5/1723 in Scotland; John Maynard Keynes, renowned British economist, 6/5/1883 in Cambridge, England; Nathan Hale, Revolutionary War patriot hung by Brits as a spy (“I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.”), 6/6/1755 in Coventry, CT; Frank Lloyd Wright, renowned architect, 6/8/1867 in Richland Center, WI; Cole Porter, renowned lyricist and composer (“Kiss Me Kate,” “Can Can”), 6/9/1893 in Peru, IN; Hattie McDaniel, actress (‘Mammy’ in “Gone with the Wind”), 6/10/1889 in Wichita, KS; Frances Gumm, aka Judy Garland, renowned singer and actress (“Wizard of Oz”), 6/10/1922 in Grand Rapids, MN; Jeanette Rankin, first woman to be elected to Congress, 6/11/1880 in Missoula MT; Jacques Cousteau, undersea explorer, 6/11/1910 in France; Vince Lombardi, renowned football coach 6/11/1913 in Brooklyn, NY; George H. W. Bush, 41st president, 6/12/1924, in Milton, MA; Anne Frank, Holocaust victim, 6/12/1929 in Frankfurt, Germany; Harriet Beecher Stowe, author (“Uncle Tom’s Cabin,” origin of phrases “Uncle Tom” and “Simon Legree”),6/14/1811 in Litchfield, CT; Alois Alzheimer, psychologist and pathologist who discovered the degenerative disease named for him, 6/14/1864 in Germany; Stan Laurel, half of renowned comedy team, Laurel and Hardy, 6/16/1890 in England; Lou Gehrig, Hall of Fame baseball player, died from ALS, which is commonly called “Lou Gehrig’s disease,” 6/19/1903 in NYC; Audie Murphy, Medal of Honor WWII American war hero, 6/20/1924 in Kingston, TX; Jack Dempsey, heavyweight boxing champion, aka the “Manassa Mauler,” 6/24/1895 in Manassa, CO; Eric Arthur Blair, aka George Orwell, British satirist and author (“1984”) 6/25/1903 in India; Mildred “Babe” Didrikson, renowned female athlete, in Port Arthur TX; Mildred Hill, composed song that is sung most frequently; do you know the name? See below.), 6/27/1859 in Louisville, KY; William Mayo, surgeon (Mayo Clinic), 6/29/1861 in Le Sueur, MN.

Quiz answer – “Happy Birthday”


What is the summer solstice?  What does it mean?  When does it occur?  Good questions.  Read on for the answers.

As many of you know, the ss is the date with the longest period of daylight, and when the sun’s shadow is its shortest. Furthermore, in most of the US it is the date on which the sun appears to be at its highest point in the sky. In extreme northern locales the sun will be “out” the entire day.  In the NY area, where I live, we will get about 15 hours of sun.

The word “solstice” is derived from the Latin “sol,” meaning “sun” and “sistere,” meaning “to stand still.” As the seasons progress from winter to summer in the northern hemisphere, the sun appears to move north in the sky. On the date of the ss it has progressed as far north as it will get, and it momentarily “stands still” before it appears to begin to slide southward toward the point of its winter solstice.

Depending on the particular year, in the northern hemisphere the summer solstice can occur anytime between June 20 and June 22.  According to Wikipedia and the Farmer’s Almanac in 2022 it will occur precisely on June 21, at 5:14 AM, which will be when the sun will be directly over the Tropic of Cancer (23.5 degrees north latitude).

In most cultures and countries the summer and winter solstices are intertwined with the seasons.  For example, in the US and many other countries the ss marks the commencement of summer.  On the other hand, in extreme northern and southern locations the solstices mark the midpoint of summer or winter.

For many ancient cultures the ss was a festive time. Most of them were sun worshippers anyway, and the longest day of the year was a reason to celebrate the renewal of life. The recurrent themes, in various forms, were life, light, femininity, marriage and fertility. (Perhaps, this concept was the derivation of the custom of having weddings in June.)

For example:

1. The pagan holiday, Litha, which is a celebration of light and life, was celebrated on that date.
2. According to English Heritage, a charity that acts as caretaker for over 400 historic buildings, monuments, and sites, the ancient culture that constructed Stonehenge in about 2,500 BC intended it to be a crude calendar used to mark the summer and winter solstices and the vernal and autumnal equinoxes. The stones do seem to have been placed to align with the sunrise on the dates of those events.
3. The ancient Chinese marked the date with celebrations of the femininity, the “Yin” forces, and the Earth, itself. This served as a counterpoint to the winter solstice, which was a celebration of the heavens, masculinity, and the “Yang” forces.
4. Typically, Native Americans held festivals featuring body paint and ritualistic dances.
5. In ancient Gaul (modern-day France) the celebration was called the Feast of Epona after a mare goddess that protected horses and personified fertility.
6. Slavic and Germanic cultures celebrated with huge bonfires.


In modern times the ss is a time to celebrate the arrival of summer.  In many extreme northern areas, such as northern Sweden, Finland and Norway, where the people may not see the sun at all for certain parts of the year, people spend the entire day outside to “reconnect with nature.” Many of them decorate their homes, light bonfires, and dance around Maypoles.

I have always enjoyed a warm summer day as much as the next guy.  But, truthfully, to me the day of the ss is just another day. Rest assured, I will NOT be lighting any bonfires or dancing around any maypoles. (Wouldn’t that be a scary image.) Depending on the weather I will play golf, play outside with the kids (or grandkids), go to the beach, or, if it’s inclement, just stay inside.  Whatever you do, enjoy the day.

One final thought on the date, it has always seemed contradictory to me that the beginning of summer also marked the time when the days started to get shorter, and I view shorter days as a harbinger of winter.


In all likelihood you have no idea who Mayra Flores is. It’s understandable. Few people outside of South Texas politics have heard of her. I confess that I hadn’t until this week. Last Tuesday, she defeated the Democrat candidate 51-43% in a special election to fill the remaining six months of the vacancy created by the resignation of the Democrat incumbent, Filemon Vela, Jr. It was an historic win. She will have to defend the seat in November as part of the general election.

So, one might say, what’s the big deal. It’s only a short-term victory, and the Dems could very well win back the seat in November as due to redistricting the redrawn district will be “bluer” than the current one. However, I contend that the victory is VERY significant. Read on, and I will explain why.

But, first , a little background about Mayra Flores. Flores was born in 1985 in Mexico. Her parents were poor migrant farmworkers. The family emigrated to America when Mayra was six. Mayra became a citizen in 1999 at the age of 14. Like most Hispanics, the Flores’ habitually voted Democrat, but they believed in conservative values, which they imparted to their daughter. Mayra graduated from South Texas College in 2019. She worked for a bit in the healthcare industry, but her real passion was politics. She took a job in the office of the Hidalgo County Republican Party where she was responsible for outreach to the Hispanic community. She is married to a US Border Patrol agent, and they have four children. She is very much tied into the Hispanic Community in her district.

Like many Hispanics she became disillusioned with the Dem Party. She felt the Dem politicians were taking Hispanics for granted and were not doing enough to help them. So, when Vela resigned his seat she quickly filed to run in the special election. She focused her campaign on the issues that most concern Hispanics – family, border security/immigration, inflation and the economy.

The congressional district in question encompasses the area south and east of San Antonio down to the Mexican border. Historically, it has been heavily Democrat (as has most of the region). For example, both Obama and Hillary Clinton had won the district by double digits. But, Biden only carried it by 4 points in 2020. This had shocked local politicians. The district, along with other ones in Texas, Arizona and California that are heavily Hispanic, is on the GOP’s list of vulnerable seats it hopes to “flip” in November.

According to the Texas Tribune the victory established Flores as the first Mexican-born woman to serve in Congress. Furthermore, she accomplished this feat as a Republican in a perennially heavily Democrat district. This will likely have a significant impact on the political landscape not only of South Texas, but also the entire State of Texas and perhaps the country as a whole. It signals loudly and clearly that Dems can no longer take the support of Hispanics for granted.

According to Politico GOP politicians feel the Dems misread the electorate badly. According to a GOP- ordered poll conducted by Meeting Street Insights last month the most important issues for voters in the district were border security, immigration and inflation. GOP Rep Tom Emmer, who is the head of the GOP House campaign effort told the Politico reporter “our [candidates] were talking about inflation and the economy and crime and the border. [They were talking about] January 6.”

Flores’ victory is widely seen by many political observers as a portent of what could happen in November. GOPers are “giddy” over the prospects, particularly with respect to Hispanic voters. On the other hand, the very next day members of the Democrat Congressional Campaign Committee were besieged by Dem reps who now realize the extent of their vulnerability. For example, Rep Vincente Gonzalez, who will face Flores in November, lamented “they [the Dem Party] ha[s] just forgotten about the brown people on the border. … They are taking Latinos in South Texas for granted.” Other Dem Reps, such as Sylvia Garcia, Veronica Escobar, Henry Cuellar and Joaquin Castro, who also represent heavily Hispanic districts, expressed grave concern and demanded a meeting to discuss strategy. Cuellar hit the nail on the head saying “the DCCC needs to sit down and look at South Texas seriously. …. You can’t take Hispanics for granted [anymore], which they always do.” Escobar fumed “there is no logical reason why we should be losing any of these seats.” Garcia predicted the meeting will be a “hard talk.” Reading between the lines, I would characterize those reps as “scared sh**less.”


The Dems are “putting on a brave face.” They are spinning Flores’ victory as largely symbolic. Most of them believe Gonzalez will win back the seat in November. For instance DCCC head Sean Patrick Maloney denotes that Flores’ district is being redrawn into an even “bluer” district, and she will probably lose it in November. “The Republicans spent millions of dollars to win a seat that’s going away. We’re going to win [it] when it matters.” He may be right. Maybe Flores’ win is the “wakeup call the Dems need. Time will tell. Personally, I don’t think so. I think many of them, particularly those up for re-election, are close to panic. Ultimately, some may squeak by based on the demographic make-up of their district; others will likely lose.

Meanwhile, the GOPers are calling it a portent of the general election in November. Senator Ted Cruz characterized it as a “seismic shift.” Others have denoted that it is the continuation of a trend that began with Donald Trump’s election in 2016.

In my view, Flores’ win provides real evidence that voters are dissatisfied with Biden and the Dem Party. I see it as a continuation and reaffirmation of the various polls we have seen over the last several months. Polls may be subjective, theoretical and open to interpretation and “spin,” but an actual election is a real, irrefutable result. Dems would be advised not to dismiss Flores’ victory as a “fluke” or as a product of Dem overconfidence or the GOP “pulling out all the stops.” Rather they should view it as a legitimate warning shot, a portent. They ignore it at their own risk.


On Sunday, June 19, the third Sunday of June, many of us will celebrate Father’s Day.   According to the British Broadcasting Corporation FD is celebrated in some 70 countries around the world.

In the US, FD is commonly viewed as an opportunity to gather with family and friends for barbecues, picnics, sporting activities (e.g. baseball, golf or fishing), eat at a favorite restaurant, or attend a Broadway show.  Generally, it is a fun day.  In view of all the negativity we have suffered through this year such a day will be most welcome.

The idea of an annual day to recognize fathers was first proposed by Sonora Dodd a resident of Spokane, WA, in 1909. She wanted to honor her own father who had raised her and five siblings as a single parent.  In her opinion, mothers had their “day,” so why shouldn’t fathers.  At first, she approached her pastor about organizing a special service on her father’s birthday, June 5, but for some reason, perhaps, time constraints, the celebration was deferred to the third Sunday of June.  The initial celebration was held in 1910.

For many years the idea of a “day” for fathers did not catch on with the general public. The major reason was the fear that it would become overly commercialized like Mother’s Day and Christmas.   In addition, the media was not behind the concept.  Rather than support the idea, they attacked it with sarcastic and cynical articles and cartoons.

FD did, however, have its supporters.  Congress debated a bill as early as 1913, but it did not pass.  Presidents such as Woodrow Wilson and Calvin Coolidge supported it publicly.

Some years later, Margaret Chase Smith, a longtime influential senator from Maine, criticized the inequity of Congress’ ignoring fathers while honoring mothers.  Finally, in 1966 LBJ issued a Presidential proclamation designating the third Sunday in June as FD.  It became a permanent holiday in 1972.

According to the British Broadcasting Corporation FD is celebrated in some 70 countries around the world. The timing and characteristics of the celebrations differ depending on seasons and various traditions and cultures, as follows:

  1. United Kingdom – It is also celebrated on the third Sunday of June.  It is recognized as a day to honor not only fathers, but also other father figures, such as grandfathers and fathers-in-law.  As in the US, typically, people pay a visit and give cards and gifts.  Other activities might include male-only outings [golf, football (soccer), or cricket], or trips.  One significant difference is that the day is not considered to be a holiday, just a normal Sunday.
  2. Canada – Very similar to the UK.  Popular activities would include going to the park, the zoo, or eating out in a restaurant.
  3.  Russia – The holiday, celebrated on February 23, is called Defender of the Fatherland Day.  All men are honored, not just fathers.  It began as a military celebration and is still marked by military parades.
  4. Mexico – Celebrated on the third Sunday of June.  It is marked with parties and gifts for dads and a 21 kilometer Father’s Day race.
  5. Brazil – It is celebrated on August 2 in honor of St. Joachim, patron saint of fathers and grandfathers.
  6. Bulgaria celebrates the day in December.
  7. According to The Sun various countries in the Southern Hemisphere, such as Australia and New Zealand, celebrate the holiday in September.
  8. Northern European countries, such as Norway, Sweden and Finland, celebrate the day in November.

For many years the idea of a “day” for fathers did not catch on with the general public. The major reason was the fear that it would become overly commercialized like Mother’s Day and Christmas.   In addition, the media was not behind the concept.  Rather than support the idea, they attacked it with sarcastic and cynical articles and cartoons.

FD did, however, have its supporters.  Congress debated a bill as early as 1913, but it did not pass.  Presidents such as Woodrow Wilson and Calvin Coolidge spoke out in favor of it.

Some years later, Margaret Chase Smith, a longtime influential Senator from Maine, criticized the inequity of Congress’ ignoring fathers while honoring mothers.  Finally, in 1966 LBJ issued a Presidential proclamation designating the third Sunday in June as FD.  It became a permanent holiday in 1972.


The National Retail Federation estimates that Americans will spend about $172 per person on FD gifts in 2021 The NRF estimates the overall total will be some $20 billion, which would be roughly the same as in 2021.

As you might expect, according to the NRF this total pales next to the $28 billion we spent on mothers last month.  Why do we spend so much more money on our mothers than on our fathers?  There are many theories, but no one knows for sure?

Generally, we don’t take our dads to restaurants as we do our moms. Instead, we put them work barbecuing. The National Restaurant Association reports that FD is one of the slowest days of the year whereas MD is the busiest. Not surprising.

What are the most popular FD gifts?  According to the NRF #1 is a greeting card.   #2 is a special family outing, for example, taking a trip or attending a sporting event. Other popular gifts include clothes, tools, appliances and “personal care” items.

Dads, remember it is your day.  Whatever you decide to do, enjoy it.


Today, I officially became a (not so) proud member of the “Five Dollar Club.” I paid over $5.00 a gallon to gas up my car at my favorite service station. Note, that price was to pay cash for unleaded regular. God forbid I should need to use premium, diesel, or pay with a credit card. Actually, I was lucky, because as I was pumping the attendant was busy raising the prices at the other pumps. Good thing I’m an early riser. By this afternoon the price could be over $6. (Just kidding, maybe).

Of course the price of gas at the pump is not the only thing that is rising precipitously. It is merely the most visible. Everything is up – food, rent, interest rates, airline tickets, clothing, etc. You don’t need me to tell you that. Anyone paying attention is fully and painfully aware. Putting it another way, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has disclosed that the average family is currently paying $460 per month more to support itself. Since many if, not most, families have been living paycheck to paycheck that is devastating news. As always, the hardest hit are the middle class, the poor and those living on a fixed income.

According to consumer advocate, Edgar Dworsky, food manufacturers have a new trick to hide price increases. In many cases they retain old the price but reduce the quantity in the package. For example, Pringles has reduced the size of its chips; Cascade has reduced the number of pods in the dishwasher package; Cottonelle has reduced the number of sheets in its rolls of toilet paper. Even restaurants have gotten into the act by reducing portions. Most people may not notice, which, of course, is the point. Welcome to the new wonderful world of “shrinkflation.”

The Biden administration has not shown it has the foggiest idea of how to resolve this massive problem. Even worse, it will not even acknowledge one exists. The first step toward resolving a problem is to admit it exists, and so far the Biden Administration refuses to acknowledge the gravity of the problem. It has steadfastly maintained that inflation is “temporary” and has “peaked.” On the contrary, numbers don’t lie. Our own eyes don’t lie. To paraphrase the late comedian Groucho Marx, “are you going to believe what I tell you or what you see with you own eyes?”

In addition, multiple news outlets are reporting that inflation increased to 8.6% for the month of May, and it is expected to accelerate further. Most business analysts and economists, such as Larry Kudlow, have opined that this is merely the beginning, not the peak, nor the end. Some of us will recall the pain of the runaway inflation and interest rates of the 1970’s. Once inflation takes hold, as it has now, it is pervasive and tenacious. Getting rid of it is very painful. In short, I fear we are “in for it.”

So far, rather than assuring us it has a plan to combat inflation, to get us out of this mess, the Biden Administration has been focusing on ascribing blame. It has blamed Putin, food manufacturers, “greedy” big businesses, Republicans, COVID, Donald Trump, and Fox News, among others. In short, it has blamed everyone but those in charge, those who have made the decisions that got us into this situation. Former president Harry Truman was famous for the saying “the buck stops here,” meaning that he, as president, was responsible. Biden’s attitude has been to “pass the buck.” Americans should not and will not be fooled.

Their favorite tactic has been to create distractions to divert the attention of voters. For example, we are now being bombarded with the “Insurrection” hearings. I refuse to watch one second of this one-sided, phony sham-show, which is reminiscent of the Salem witch trials and the Stalin-era Soviet Union “show trials” where the verdict was a foregone conclusion. This is further evidence of how out of touch with reality the Dems are. Few people care about this issue now when they are mainly concerned with real life issues like putting food on the table and paying the rent. As Hilary Clinton infamously intoned in another context: “what difference at this point does it matter.”


How bad will it get? How high will prices rise? No one really knows. But, in my opinion, we do know two things. (1) It will get worse before it gets better. (2) Biden and his cronies are NOT the ones who have the capabilities to resolve it.

The latest Quinnipiac Poll reported Biden’s approval rating to be 33%, which is a new low. Moreover, every poll is predicting that the Dems are heading for a (well deserved) disaster at the only poll that counts – the one in November. Unfortunately, we are stuck with Biden for two more years. (In my opinion, impeaching him and replacing him with Kamala Harris would be worse.) But, we can (and in my opinion, will) “flip” both houses of Congress on Election Day.. More on this in future blogs.