Thursday … Not Closing Well

tumblr_lwdrzs4X441qhzv6oo1_500 darkandchaosCourtesy: Dark and Chaos

We are sitting at a very chilly (-18c/-25c w.c.). We have begin grumbling about the cold again. February came in, the same way January did, bitterly cold. We are hoping that in a matter of weeks,we may begin lifting out of this cold and darkness. Lots of other places are battling snowfall amounts that are just too much. Snow has overwhelmed the Maritimes and points south.

I had stuff to do today and plans to go spend some serious money at the advertised “Target: Black Friday Liquidation Sale” that began today.

But First, I went to the salon and had my hair cut. Another sweet buzz. I think I am beginning to warm to the idea that the brush of grey hair that has appeared is distinguished looking, so says my stylist. But that did not stop me from hitting the pharmacy for some retail hair color. UGH !!!!

Should I color it or accept that I am just getting “older ?”

On the way to the salon, you look down over Target, on the ground floor. On the front window panels are these huge liquidation signs stating upwards of 30% off stock. So I went into the salon saying to myself that finally I was going to get a real deal on something that I really can’t live without !

After my cut I did, in fact go down to the store. Every single shopping cart that is usually stacked in the front of the store, because, there are never “that many” people in the store at any given time, even on the “Open” event. Every cart was in the store, meaning there were corresponding shoppers connected to those carts, and they told us that we’d get “Black Friday” pricing. So they said …

Imagine Black Friday shoppers, fighting, pushing, shoving and being all kinds of insane …

They have stacked TV’s, Microwaves and other Boxy type merchandise all over the store, wherever there is free space. Yes, In fact, there were tons of people milling about.

I started in bedding, hoping to score a deal on a new sheet set, (Which we seriously need). As it happened, all the mid-range products were sold out. (Queen and Full size) and we were left with only Twin and King.

I sure as shit know that not many downtown renters have king size beds. And you don’t see many kids, so twin is another wasted product. Unless of course you have a dorm room on campus.

Pricing ran from $39.99 to $79.99 retail for what was left on the shelf, but all that they could manage in discounts was 10% … Ten percent.

WTF ???

I did not get my sheets !

I then walked over to the men’s clothing section. All over the other clothing areas, there were clothes littering the floor from one end to another. It was no different in men’s. The t shirt kiosks that you find nicely folded shirts for sale, they were all rumpled and unfolded, like someone rifled through them and left them laying in a pile, like you would find on someones bed room floor !

I did not see anything earth shattering. We had made purchases from Christmas so we really did not need anything, and there wasn’t anything on offer, that I couldn’t live without.

I did not see one item at a greater discount than 10%.

So that was a bust !

I was two for two, and I decided that there wasn’t anything else I wanted or needed, so I left the store and went to Micky D’s for lunch.

All day the web was buzzing with comments like:  Black Friday sales a bust … Target cannot even close right … Canadians leave target more disappointed than they expected …

When they opened, the store did have promise. It was bright and shiny new. We hoped that it would knock our socks off with selection and pricing that would compete in the market. You can’t run a store with empty shelves, and only offer certain products in a number of areas, and not all of them. They really did not dig out of that problem. And the holidays were a bust for Target. They just could not move product with the pricing they had.

People are disillusioned with Target. They came in with a BANG, and are going out like a DUD.

The discounts did not match up to the hype they were feeding us.

I came home after lunch because I had bottles to return. So it was an up down thing…

You know when you go into a grocery store totally prepared to buy everything on your mental list, it is mental, because you didn’t go far enough and write things down, and once you get home, you realize that you keep forgetting the same things over and over ???

I put everything away, and changed out of traveling clothes. I sat down at the computer and settled in. Only to get up twenty minutes later and change back into traveling clothes, to go back out and hit the dollar store for some stuff I needed and then go back to the grocery store to buy what I forgot, only to walk through the store and add more stuff to your cart than you had planned. because you had a hankering for J-E-L-L-O !!!

You can eat jello at any time of the day and that’s exactly what I did when I got home.

I had time to burn and nothing to do so I took an afternoon nap before the meeting.

We arrived at the church and settled in, and within minutes the chair walked up to my friend I travel with and asked him to share, right on the spot. (you never say no, usually) and he said yes.

I don’t remember the last time I heard the whole story, in one full sweep. But I have been listening to him for years, so I knew the story in pieces. It is always good to hear different old timers talk about what they do, how they do it, and how they do their Work …

All the older men I know, do it differently. And some don’t even do that at all.

Among our young members at several meetings, including myself, we invested in the lives of our old timers. This is, on the main, simple. They aren’t alone. Someone spends time with them weekly. Some of our guys teach music lessons, we share meals with them, hit meetings together, and we include them in our holiday gatherings.

We had two cakes. 18 and 19 years. Lots of cake. Frivolity and Fellowship.

Tomorrow is the best Day / Night of the week.

More to come, stay tuned …

Islamic State Selling, Crucifying, Burying Children Alive in Iraq – UN

Iraqi Shi'ite fighters pose with an Islamic State flag which they pulled down on the front line in Jalawla

By Stephanie Nebehay – REUTERS NEWS SERVICE

GENEVA (Reuters) – Islamic State militants are selling abducted Iraqi children at markets as sex slaves, and killing other youth, including by crucifixion or burying them alive, a United Nations watchdog said on Wednesday.

Iraqi boys aged under 18 are increasingly being used by the militant group as suicide bombers, bomb makers, informants or human shields to protect facilities against U.S.-led air strikes, the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child said.

“We are really deeply concerned at torture and murder of those children, especially those belonging to minorities, but not only from minorities,” committee expert Renate Winter told a news briefing. “The scope of the problem is huge.”

Children from the Yazidi sect or Christian communities, but also Shi’ites and Sunnis, have been victims, she said.

“We have had reports of children, especially children who are mentally challenged, who have been used as suicide bombers, most probably without them even understanding,” Winter told Reuters. “There was a video placed (online) that showed children at a very young age, approximately eight years of age and younger, to be trained already to become child soldiers.”

Islamic State is a breakaway al Qaeda group that declared an Islamic caliphate across parts of Syria and Iraq last summer. It has killed thousands and forced hundreds of thousands from their homes, in what the United Nations has called a reign of terror.

On Tuesday, the group, which is also known as ISIL, released a video showing a captured Jordanian pilot being burned alive.

The U.N. body, which reviewed Iraq’s record for the first time since 1998, denounced “the systematic killing of children belonging to religious and ethnic minorities by the so-called ISIL, including several cases of mass executions of boys, as well as reports of beheadings, crucifixions of children and burying children alive”.

A large number of children have been killed or badly wounded during air strikes or shelling by Iraqi security forces, while others had died of “dehydration, starvation and heat”, it said.

ISIL has committed “systematic sexual violence”, including “the abduction and sexual enslavement of children”, it said.

“Children of minorities have been captured in many places… sold in the market place with tags, price tags on them, they have been sold as slaves,” Winter said, giving no details.

The 18 independent experts who worked on the report called on Iraqi authorities to take all necessary measures to “rescue children” under the control of Islamic State and to prosecute perpetrators of crimes.

“There is a duty of a state to protect all its children. The point is just how are they going to do that in such a situation?”, Winter said.

(Additional reporting by Marina Depetris; Editing by Crispian Balmer)