Wondering about wild grapes

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Wondering about the History Channel.

I finished up watching a three part series on the History Channel called The Hatfields and McCoys.  All I can say is WOW!!!  Since it was a true story, it hit home even harder.  This was a gruesome, violent movie with lots of realistic action and blood and gore.  (Not Al Gore)  My wife couldn’t bear to watch it.  It was almost like the Civil War but only between West Virginia and Kentucky.  It was well done with great acting.  Kevin Costner played the head of the Hatfield clan.  I must admit he did a great job, as did all the actors.  It was by far the best movie I have ever seen on TV.  I highly recommend it.  If it ever comes back on, you all should watch it.

Since I come from Pennsytucky, I could recognize the scenery.  You may be wondering where Pennsytucky is, right?  Well, it is the wooded hill country of Pennsylvania.  Deep forests and rivers with sparkling clear creeks.  That is until the strip mining and interstate road construction polluted a lot of them.  I think I covered that subject in one of my older blogs.  OK, if you missed the series, watch it if it ever comes on again.  It has everything, like love stories, feuds, fun times, sad times, loving and hating and of course a lot of killing.  I liked it and I bet most of you will, too.  Now have a great day and don’t fight with your neighbors, you hear?

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Wondering if it is time to get supplies.

I am getting very low on two very important things.  Let me think hard here as to which is the most important.  Last evening I went to the freezer to get my nightly portion of Blue Bell Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream and there was not much left in the half gallon.  And yes, they still give you a full half gallon unlike other ice cream makers.  So, to be on the safe side and just in case I couldn’t make it to the store today, I divided what was left and only enjoyed half of it.  That way I have a portion, slightly smaller than normal, left for tonight.  Now, if I don’t get to the store today, it will become an emergency tomorrow!!

The next thing is that I only have one more pill left of my blood pressure medicine.  If I don’t get the prescription refilled today, I will have none to take tomorrow.  Lucky for me that the same place I get my ice cream is also the same place where I get my prescription refilled.  As it looks, I have two or three other places that I have to go today, so it seems it will become an emergency tomorrow.

Of course, the biggest question that I have is why does the very last tiny bite of ice cream left always taste the very best???  The last bite in the bowl, you know, the one where you have to scrape and scrape to get a few molecules; why does it always taste the best and the sweetest?  Now, I eat a very, very healthy diet and the only vice I have is my Blue Bell Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream, so don’t get the idea that I am a junk food junky or eat a lot of sweets.  There is no sugar in this house, except what is in my ice cream and some 70 percent cocoa chocolate that I take a small bite after meals.  I don’t eat cookies, cakes, pies, and such.  So I feel that my love for my special ice cream is not going to kill me.  But if it does, I can’t think of a better way to go!!  Now you all have a great day and have some ice cream and think of me, you hear?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Wondering what it would be like without computers.

My world, for many years, has revolved around computers.  I believe they have been a blessing and sometimes a curse.  The blessing is that the computer allowed me to work at home.  Working at home can be a mixed blessing but the advantages outweighed the disadvantages by a long shot.  In fact it would be very difficult for me to find any disadvantages.  You may say that I don’t get to inter-react with other people.  That is not the case; I got to meet more people because I did projects for many different companies over my working career.  I even spent some time “on site”, but I would limit that as much as possible.  I have met with all my customers in person and a lot of their employees.  So you see, I may seem like a hermit by staying at home instead of commuting to a work location, but I bet I have met more people through my work than most do, except for sales people who are on the road all the time.

Now, without computers it would be a lot harder for me to do what I do.  Before everyone had computers, I still did my work for different companies but had to create the drawings on paper using a drafting table and tools.  Then I would either have to deliver the drawing in person or mail them off.  This was difficult and at times, I had to take on full time jobs.  Then the computer came along and I got my first one while doing a contract job for G.E. Nuclear Fuel and Components in N.C.  That first computer changed my life and mostly for the better.

I now write emails, a blog, play games, and of course work on my computer.  It is a source of instant information on any subject you could possibly think of and if you know how to search properly, you can access that information in seconds.  Sometimes I get information I don’t want, but most of the time I find what I am looking for.  If I can’t find it, my wife can.  She is so very proficient at searching for information it is scary what she can dig up about almost anything or anybody.

Of course the computer has limited more personal communication.  For instance, like right now.  My wife is in the room but is not talking to me because she knows I am writing my blog and don’t want to be disturbed.  Maybe the computer and the internet will replace personal conversations someday, but I hope I am not around to see that happen.  I just love to talk to people face to face.  The telephone is my second choice and emails are my third choice.  Of course for business, emails are the best because they can be saved for reference later in the project.

Well, I got to run.  Lots of stuff on the calendar for today.  You all have a great day now, you hear?

Monday, May 28, 2012

Wondering “Why did I do that?”

First, let me say to all of you on this Memorial Day, remember all the military people that served, are serving, or especially the ones that gave their lives in the line of duty.  Also, remember all who have passed on.  When I was growing up, my parents took me and we went to several grave yards where close relatives were interned.  Always put flags on the graves of ones who had been veterans along with flowers on all, especially my grandparents’ graves.

Now, I have previously covered the simple phrases, “why not” and “what if”, so now I want to cover one other simple phrase, “why did I do that?”  This is probably one of my most used phrases.  Why, because I do things that later have caused me pain in one way or another or it made matters worse.  You know what I am talking about, like locking your house or car with the keys inside, lifting something that is way too heavy for your back, or saying something negative to your spouse.  Why oh why did I do that!  Sometimes you know right away and sometimes it takes a matter of hours or the next day.  The fallout can last quite awhile, especially if it is something you said to your spouse (grin).  Now, why did I say that?  My wife reads my blog sometimes.

Now tell me, are you all perfect and never say or do anything that you wish you hadn’t?  If so, give us your secret, please!!  If not, tell us some of the things you wish you had not said.  It can be simple like saying to your friend that he or she is getting old and fat or something huge like saying, “I can jump that canyon!”  Now I am going to say something that I will not be sorry I said.  You all have a great Memorial Day and remember those who have gone before, you hear?

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Wondering about “High-Tops”.

I come from a long line of “outdoor” people.  They loved nothing more than to be off in the mountains or the deep woods.  When growing up, since my Grandfather was an engineer on the Pennsylvania Rail Road, my Mother’s family all had passes on the R.R.  My Mom even road the train to school and back and sometimes she would leave school alone or with her sister or brothers and ride the train the whole way to the mountains where they had a camp.  After departing the train, they had to hike up to the top of a mountain to where the camp was located.  I believe I talked about this before on one of my older blogs.  I just wanted to give you a little background for today’s subject, high-top boots.

Those mountains they hiked in were full of rattle snakes and they had a rule that whenever out hiking, they were to wear their “high-tops”.  These boots came up to just under the knee and where lace up, so they fit rather snugly.  I am sure they gave some protection, but I would think that it was more to ease their mind.  An extra large rattle snake could possibly penetrate the thick leather, but maybe most, if not all, could not.  Here is a picture of my Mother (on left) with her sister who everyone called “Pet” (on the right of the picture on my Mom’s left).

This was taken on one of their hikes in the Appalachian Mountains of north central Pennsylvania.  That is probably Mix Run and it would be near the small town of Driftwood.  Let me zoom in a little and so you can see how they are dressed:

Still can’t see the boots?  How about this:

They sure did know how to have a good time.  Now you know why I love nature and getting out “in the woods” so much.  It is in my blood.  Now, you all go out this holiday weekend and take a walk and enjoy nature, you hear?

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Wondering why not…

Yesterday I talked some about the phrase “what if” so today I think I should mention another phrase that is used a lot, “Why not?”  I guess one could say “what if I do this or that, what will happen” and then say “oh why not” and then go ahead with whatever it is.  Both of these phrases cover a lot territory.  The anonymous commenter on yesterday’s blog told about a four minute delay (talking to the camp host) that saved his life showing just how much the “what if” phrase could mean.  In his case, “why not” just head out without stopping for a quick chat would have been fatal.

Of course in a lot of cases we should go ahead with the “why not” so that we can take advantage of some good situations.  Knowing when to do so or not is the trick and if you know the answer to the trick, please let me know.

OK, what if I stop writing a blog; will I have more time for other things?  Oh why not just keep writing one every day or so, if I quit, I would miss doing it and would surely miss all the great people who comment on my blog.  So why not post a comment and let me know what you think. . . . or not.  Hey, now there is another phrase to think about: “or not”.  No, I have been thinking too much lately and that may not be good for an old fart like me.  Now there is a phrase I wonder about, I may be old but I don’t fart. . . . well not much.  Hey, you all have a great day now, you hear?  Don’t say what if, just say why not and get it done.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Wondering what if…

“What if?”  Now that is probably the biggest question in the whole world.  If you dwell on the multitude of answers to this simple but complex question, it will blow your mind.  For example, you may ask yourself “what if I hadn’t have done this or that?” or “what if I would have done this or that?” or “what if this had happened instead of that?”  I mean the options are endless as are all the “what if” questions.  What if I had not met that person, what if I had been born at a different time or a different place, what if I were born a different race or sex, etc.

Now tell me, what are some of the “what ifs” that you ask yourself the most?  Have you ever just missed being in an accident and said, “what if I had been going a little bit faster, would it have been me in that wreck?”  For such a little question it suggests a lot of different answers.

Dang, what if I didn’t write this blog today or what if I never started blogging?  OK, don’t get me started, but let me know some of your weirdest or strangest or most common “what ifs”.  Now, what if you have a great day today. . .

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Wondering why things don’t taste right.

Is it just that I am getting old and my senses are dulling or do a lot of the foods we by today not taste the same as they did a few years back.  Take onions for example.  They seem to be getting milder over the years.  Are the people who control what is commercially grown decided that we all like toned down onions?  I can’t seem to find my favorite habanera pepper sauce anymore.  The ones I get now don’t seem to have that great habanera taste and punch.  I used to get the one that Tabasco put out and it was perfect and a few drops went a long way, but I can’t find it around here.  I looked it up on their web-site and went to the stores that were suppose to carry it but couldn’t find any.  Maybe I need to do that again.

We have bought a lot of vegetables that seem to be lacking in flavor.  Have they all been genetically altered or are they picked too soon or are they stored, shipped, and handled poorly?  The answer may be all of the above.  Got to start going back to the farmer’s markets.  There used to be one in Conroe, the closest town to me of any size, but have not seen it unless they moved it somewhere.  I did a search (  http://search.ams.usda.gov/farmersmarkets/  )  on line and the closest one listed is in Huntsville.  Try it for your area, just type in your area code and within how many miles.  I had to go to the “within 50 miles” setting to find any.

Years ago, I used to go to a co-op that brought in fresh food once every month.  So that everyone got what they wanted and that there wouldn’t be any waste, we had to put in our order a month in advance.  Worked out real well and we got great food at a reasonable cost.

All this talk about food is making me hungry, so I guess I will go get a bite of something that still tastes great.  I buy crunchy almond butter and it is really great tasting and very satisfying.  It is made from real nuts, not some legume that grows under ground and breeds mold like peanuts.  Now, you all have a great day and I hope you enjoy the food you eat.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Wondering if I will get everything done.

This is going to be a busy, busy day.  First off I take my wife to the doctor, then we rush home and pack the dogs in the car and take them to their monthly grooming appointment, then we will need to get groceries and supplies and be back in time to pick the dogs up.  Yes, and of course it would be nice if I can squeeze in some time to work on my “paying” job.  Now, on top of all that it is my wife’s birthday.  Yep, you guessed it, she is thirty-nine and holding.  Looks pretty good for her age I must say.

Now what should I do special for her today?  She does not like to eat out and will not eat cake and can’t eat ice cream since her system cannot handle milk products.  I suppose I could find a nice place for her to get a salad; that is if we have time.  Can’t do it at noon since that is around the time we get the call to come get the brats, no I mean the lovely dogs, and we will barely have time to unload the groceries before we get the call that they are again pretty and ready to come home.  They are always really happy to see us and of course it is quite lonely and quiet around here when they are missing.  We are going to have a full day so maybe I will take my wife shopping on QVC or HSN and let her get herself something special.

You all have a great day now, you hear?  And you may just want to celebrate my wife’s birthday, too.  The poor young thing being stuck with an old fart like me; don’t you feel sorry for her?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Got Work

I got so many projects started that I will never get done and now I got a phone call and have work to do for my favorite customer.  And of course I need to get busy and get it done, so just wanted to let you know.  Have a good day now, you hear?

Monday, May 21, 2012

Wondering about front yard mushrooms.

In front of my house in the shade of oak trees, I found some mushrooms growing.  Some were a big clump and others were tan to red color scattered all around with no particular order.  No fairy rings of mushrooms in this bunch.  Here are some pictures I took yesterday.  The first two are of the clumps, one taken from one side and the one taken from the other:

Here are some of the random brown mushrooms.  These and the red ones are small mushrooms.

And the little red ones:

You don’t have to travel far to find interesting things to look at.  Plants, flowers, fungi, trees, birds, insects, reptiles, and amphibians all live right around all of us.  All we have to do is take time to look.  You will be surprised what you find in that jungle that is your yard.  Have a good day and take a safari outside and see what you can find.  If you live in the city, find a park or empty lot somewhere.  Just get out and have a great day, you hear?

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Wondering who would you want to talk to.

Just thinking of all the people (loved ones, relatives, friends, important people, wise people, talented people, rulers, kings, presidents, teachers, preachers, celebrities, Biblical people, etc.) that I would like to sit down and talk to.  Wouldn’t be great to be able to sit down and talk to your great, great, great, great, grandpa or grandma?  I would settle for my grandparents and my parents.  They have all been gone for quite a while.  I am talking about not just those that have passed before us, but of all those who are living today.

I would like to talk to each and every man, women, and child on this planet.  I love to talk to people.  Sitting and sipping a cup of coffee and talking to someone, especially someone I have never talked to before, is my favorite thing to do.  I find all people very interesting and I like to get to know them and for them to get to know me.  That is one of the top reasons I like to travel.  I love to meet new people and of course, old friends and relatives.  I like to walk through state parks and RV parks and stop and talk to the people I meet.  Most seem very open to some sort of small talk.  I enjoy meeting new and interesting people (everyone is interesting in some way) every time we stop somewhere.  Writing and reading blogs, going to the flea market, or traveling across country are all a very good way of meeting people and conversing with them.

Maybe some day I will be able to have a long chat with all of you personally.  I have already had the pleasure of meeting and talking to John Wells, Lake Conroe Penny, Billy Bob, Ben, Sixbears, David, Windy Bob, and of course my cousin Jimkabob.  Now, you all have a great day and someday maybe we can have a chat face to face.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Just wondering what to write about.

I woke up this morning with nothing much on my mind.  It is the weekend so we will be heading out to the flea market again to get our “outing” and a little “exercise” walking around all the outside tables.  Of course, you have heard about the flea market before.  And I have talked enough about my new mower and trying to find a shed or building that it will fit in.  Being 70 inches wide at the widest point makes it hard to find a shed that has a wide enough door opening.  Hope I don’t have to go to a garage door type.  I will probably end up building one to my own design.

In the fear of boring you any longer, I will just cut this short for today.  So, you all have a great weekend, you hear?

Friday, May 18, 2012

Wondering how it will mow.

Of course I tried out the new lawn cutting tractor yesterday and as I promised in yesterday’s blog, I will show some pictures today.  These first two pictures are of the mower sitting beside the side of my porch where it spent the night last night:

The next pictures were taken by my wife of me trying it out for the first time.  This first one is a close-up of me getting ready to cut the front lot.

These next two pictures are of me cutting the front lot.  They give you an idea of the size.  It took only a few minutes to cut it versus the almost an hour it would take pushing my rotary mower.  To say I like it is an under-statement.

See, in the last picture I am way down at the other end near the road.   Actually, next time I cut it, I will slow down some.  Think I went over it way too fast, but it cut it real good.

This gives you a quick over-view of my new toy.  Now, I got to find a building to put it in.  Went looking yesterday and dang, they can be quite expensive.  Some were a lot more than I paid for the mower and believe me, it wasn’t cheap.  So, you all have a great Friday now, you hear?

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Wondering, what did I buy yesterday?

My wife started to get worried about my son cutting most of our grass, at least the part that he could get to with his riding mower.  You see, he broke his back and he has all these bars and screws fusing three vertebrae together in his lower back and she thought that it was not good for him cutting all that grass.  She suggested that I should get a lawn tractor and cut it myself.   She also suggested that I get something that she could use if I ever got to the point where I was unable to cut it.  You know, like dead or something.  So, since Ben from “An Older Texan Remembers”, swears by his John Deere and really good friends of ours from Pennsylvania do the same, we started kicking some John Deere tires.  Our friends in Pennsylvania told my wife to make sure it had power steering.  So, with a short list of wants we browsed the John Deere store up the road a couple of miles.

Dang, I didn’t know they had so many.  We didn’t just want the “throw-a-way” kind that they sell everywhere, but a more substantial one and with power steering.  I have an old Farmall 200 that is not running now, but now we just want something that will cut grass, only.  We settled on X540/54C model.  It has a water-cooled engine, power steering, and a lot of features.  It cuts a 54 inch wide swath at a time.  Of course it cost 4 to 5 times what their “standard” model cost, but this one comes with a four year warranty and the other’s didn’t.  They will deliver it later this morning and I will take some pictures to show you all.  I believe it will knock down acres of yard in a hurry.  We looked at some 4wheel steering models, since I have a lot of trees to cut around, but settled on this better, heavier, bigger unit.  At least it has bigger rear wheels than the other ones.  They pushed it off the show-room floor and all we have to do now is wait until it is delivered.

You all have a great day today, I sure am planning to.

OK, I am having trouble with the font and size again.  This is not as big as usual, so hope you all can read it.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Wondering where the snake went.

There was a three plus foot long snake on the screened in pack porch yesterday.  He or she is not dangerous, being non-poisonous and non-aggressive.  I touched it on the back and it didn’t even try to bite me.  It disappeared into my wife’s collection of potted plants.  I think that it is good to have a snake like that around, keeps unwanted creatures, critters, and creepy-crawly things under control.  Of course my wife does not see it that way and refuses to go out on the porch even to let the dogs out.

Ben said that I should remove it.  Trouble is Ben, I can’t find it now.  It may be still in that plant jungle but if it is, it is hiding pretty good, for sure.  I think it will stay out of sight if it is still around, so you know the old saying, “out of sight, out of mind”.  Hope that works for my wife.  She said that if she sees it she may have a heart attack.  I have trouble understanding that.  Why would anyone be that afraid of something that can’t hurt him or her?  There is plenty of things that can hurt or kill you and we don’t seem to fear all of them.  That list can be really long, like not eating right, or not getting the proper rest and exercise, or smoking, or drinking too much, or reckless driving, or a million other things that people do that are either dangerous or not good for their health.  You all have a great day now and I will go back out and check to see if the snake is anywhere around.  I am sure once he eats anything that may be there, he will move on.

BTW, the font is acting up again, so I am making it normal size.  You can enlarge it to read it if it is too small.  Let me know if it looks any better.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Wondering about dead bugs.

I suppose you remember that we like to walk through the flea market on the weekends.  Sometimes we come home with things we couldn’t live without, sometimes we come home with things that will be useful, sometimes we come home with stuff that we thought we wanted but later knew it was a mistake, and sometimes we came home with things that would brighten up our home, or our RV, or ourselves.  We did get some stuff last weekend like we usually do.  It is surprising what you can find.  We have found everything from pain relieve salve to an American Indian selling his beautiful artwork.  Of course we have purchased both.  I showed you some prints of his paintings and one of these days I will show you his prototype glass etching.  It is really nice.

OK, back to the subject for today.  Both my wife and I purchased some jewelry for ourselves.  My wife got a necklace and I got a key ring.  Of course, as you see, they are not just ordinary key rings.  They are buggy.  My wife’s is a big green beetle and mine is a spider.  Of course I have some pictures.  This first one shows my wife’s green beetle necklace and the box they come in.

And this is a close up of it:

And this one shows both mine and my wife’s side by side:

Of course we brought home a lot of other things.  Have to fill up that void that was created when we set up at the flea market and sold a lot of our stuff.  We will have to that again someday down the road.  Now, you all have a great day today, you hear?

Monday, May 14, 2012

A Couple of back yard pictures.

The other day I saw a couple of butterflies on the Mimosa Tree blooms but by the time I got in the house to get the camera and back out they were gone.  Then I spotted one up high, so I reached way up and snapped a picture.  Wasn’t sure if I got it or not since I was holding the camera way above my head and couldn’t see the screen.  It came out better than I expected, at least after I trimmed it off a bit.

Yesterday morning I noticed some trumpet vine blooms hanging down over the wild grape vines next to the dogs yard.  The sun had not touched them yet so they don’t show up real bright but I thought that you would like to see a couple shots of them:

My son came up to see us yesterday with a big 17 pound black rabbit on a leash.  The dogs just loved that, so we went out and sat in the motor-home and had a good visit.  Got places to go and things to do, so you all have a safe and happy day today.  You know, being Monday and all and knowing that some of you people are still working, enjoy it anyway.  Getting old and retired isn’t what it is built up to be.  Have a good day now, you hear?

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Wondering what my Mom sang to me.

It is Mother’s Day and all of you who are lucky enough to have living mothers, please remember them today.  If nothing else give them a call and tell them how lucky you were to have them as a mom.  Of course, I had the best Mom in the whole wide world.  I sure hope she knew how I felt.  I am sure I didn’t tell her enough and even though she had to be disappointed in me a few times, she always loved me dearly.  When she had to move out of her home, she was too stubborn to move in with me down here in Texas.  She said that she was born in Pennsylvania and she was going to die in Pennsylvania.  So she chose to move into an assisted living home near where she grew up and close to where other relatives lived.  I can understand her decision although I would have preferred that she live with me, I owed her more than I could ever repay.

Did your mother have a “special” song that she sung to you when you were very small?  My mother did and I can still here her singing it to me and I get a tear in my eye.  It is “You Are My Sunshine”.  Do you remember that song?  Have you ever heard it?  It has been around for a long time.  In fact, it was first recorded in 1939.  I don’t know when it was written.  I suppose you could say that was my Mother’s and my song.  Funny what you remember from when you were little.

To all you Moms out there, have a very, very special day and I am sending you a big ole hug.  You all have a great day now, you hear?

Saturday, May 12, 2012

It Missed Us.

Sorry Houston and Hermit Jim (and I bet Trouble In Texas got her share, too), you got all the severe weather and flooding yesterday and last night.  It missed us.  Sugarland got eight and a quarter inches of rain.  At one time I heard some thunder but nothing made it this far north.  At least the rain is gone and it will not interfere with Houston’s Art Car Parade.  Have you ever seen any pictures of those unusual (to say the least) cars?

I was going to take a walk around the place yesterday and maybe take some pictures; didn’t do that.  I got a lot of things to do and places I have to go and things I have to get, so we will see if I get a chance to get some pictures today.

My wife, on top of some other problems, has now gone and broke a rib.  I am trying to get hold of those people who built the “Six Million Dollar Man”.  Maybe they can make her better than new.  What you think?  Of course I could use a little bit of their work, also.  Maybe twenty bucks worth.  What, you say I ain’t even worth that much??  OK, you all have a great day today, we are planning to.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Wondering when I am going to catch up on sleep.

The storm that did all the damage in the Austin area moved through here last night.  I think Houston got more rain than we did up here in Cut and Shoot.  We needed rain, but why do the thunder storms have to come through in the middle of the night?  My oldest female dog is deathly afraid of anything that goes bang or boom and of course she gets uncontrollable shakes.  She woke me up long before I could hear the thunder but I did see flashes of lightning.  This was just a little after 02:00 this morning.  It hit here hard with some wind but the rain and lightning was intense.  It came down in bucket fulls.  The deluge only lasted about ten or fifteen minutes but for the next hour we got light to moderate steady rain.  All in all, it was good for this area.

I hope that no one was harmed anywhere and that damage was minimal.  West of here seemed to get hit the hardest.  Need to check my blog list to see how the rest of you in Texas and Louisiana made out.  Hope all is well with all of you and yours.

Nothing much planned for today.  Glad I got the dog’s yard mowed yesterday.  Need to cut more, but the dogs tell me theirs is the most important, and I agree.  I hate to, but I guess I will look over my “to do” list or just continue with cleaning out my office.  I am getting lazy in my old age, of course my wife says I should be good at being lazy now since I have had enough practice over the years.  Actually, I never heard her say that out loud, but I know what she is thinking it (grin).  OK, going to do something but maybe read some blogs first.  Then check my email.  Heck, by then it will be lunch time.  Now that’s a plan and I am going to stick to it. . .
You all have a great day now, you hear?

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Wondering if I’m better and etc.

I had the hiccups through the night but woke up this morning without them.  Then just a few minutes ago they started again, but didn’t last.  So, maybe I am over them (knock on wood).  They do start to wear you down after a while, but thank goodness I was able to get some sleep.  Only woke up with them three or four times.  Enough about my problems.

Yep, enough about my problems since everyone has problems and most a lot more serious than mine.  Even President Obama has problems.  Did you hear about the West Virginia primaries?  Now I have a rule not to get political in my blog, but this is just too funny to resist.  Instead of trying to tell you about it, let me give you a link to the news site:


Maybe you don’t find this funny but I sure did.  Now you all have a great day, you hear?

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Wondering when I will feel better.

I have been somewhat under the weather lately.  Fever, stomach cramps, lower stomach sore to the touch, and then last night I had the dang hic-ups most of the night.  That always worries me because I remember when I was a kid, my Grandpa got the hic-ups and couldn’t get rid of them.  He got weaker and weaker and no matter what the doctor did, they wouldn’t stop.  The doctor finally said that if they didn’t stop soon, that my Grandpa would have to have surgery and have the nerves cut.  They did finally stop, just in time to prevent the surgery.  Wow, that was a lot of years ago.  I wonder if they have more things they could do now?

I don’t have much to say today, so I think I will bid you all ado until tomorrow.  You all have a great day now, you hear?  

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Wondering if the steps will hold up.

I got the parts to fix the motor-home steps last Friday.  I didn’t feel like crawling under there that day so waited until Saturday late afternoon.  Remember Saturday morning I told you that I couldn’t find my Allen wrenches?  I took the shoulder bolt to the flea market and was having trouble finding any.  I finally asked the regular “tool man” from whom I get a lot of stuff and he said that he didn’t bring his Allen wrenches this weekend but to go ask the guy up at the end table, he may have one.  I did as I was told and handed the guy the bolt and he bent down under his table and searched awhile and finally came up with an Allen wrench that fit it perfectly.  Would you guess what he did?  He gave it to me.  So, when I got home I had no excuse.  I got on the internet and printed out an assembled unit so I would not put things together the wrong way.  Figured I could use it like a road map for putting everything back together.  I worked a few hours on it and failed.  Although I had a picture, I must have put the wrong parts in first.  By that time my back, neck, and arms were hurting so bad that I had to quit.

Sunday afternoon, I tried again.  I was worried if I could get the gears together in the correct orientation so the steps would fully open and fully close.  I was worried over nothing.  Since I didn’t disconnect the linkage to the big gear, it could only be mounted in the correct position.  This time I started by loosely mounting the large gear assembly, shoulder bolt, and one half of the support plate.  Then I figured out where all the spacers went for mounting the gear motor with the small gear.  It was a tight fit and had to be finessed into the correct position, or what I thought to be the correct position.  After I got everything assembled, I tightened up all the bolts.  Now, it was breath holding time.  I went into the RV and turned the ignition key (not quite far enough to start the engine) and to my pleasant surprise, I heard the steps go the whole way out.  I shut the door and they folded up.  I gave myself an “atta boy” and cleaned up the tools and the mess.  One nagging project out of the way, but have a lot more to take its place.

You all have a great day now, you hear?

Monday, May 7, 2012

Wondering about some gold prospecting terms.

I believe that I told you that I belong to the G.P.A.A. (Gold Prospectors Association of America) and they use terms in the prospecting and mining hobby and industry that may not be familiar with a lot of non-prospector type people.  Most everyone knows what a gold pan is (no, it ain’t a gold colored pan but we like to see lots of “color” in it).  The word color in prospecting terms means traces of gold in the pan or sluice or whatever you are using to prospect or work a claim.  We all like to see gold of any kind but nuggets are really great and for those of us who like to swing a metal detector, you want to find some “placer” gold.  Now, unless you are a seasoned prospector I bet you pronounced that all wrong.  It is not pronounced like it is spelled.  It should have been spelled “plasser” because it rhymes with “passer”.  Anyway, it is gold found loose in sand or gravel deposits.  And do you know what a “Gold Miner” is?  He is a liar with a hole in the ground.  OK, enough of that, but I am going to tell you what I had for supper last night in prospector language and I want you to tell me what I had, OK?

Last night I enjoyed some whistle berries with grilled chicken, and afterward I had both some Adam’s Ale and a little later I had some Belly Wash.

Got that all figured out?  OK, I will let you know if you got it right.  Now go and have a golden day, you hear?

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Wondering about Google Earth

Google Earth seems to want to put everyone on the map and on the internet.  Some feel they are invading one’s privacy and I am sure that is the case, but in this day and age, no one can be private very long.  If you have any part of a person’s information and if you dig deep enough on the internet, you can find out almost everything there is to know about that person.  It is easier if you have the person’s name, address, and telephone number, but with only one of those, you can find the rest.  There are all sorts of “people finder” sites, some free and some have a fee.  If you have a little patients and take the time for some research, the free ones work just fine.  With Google Earth, you can see where someone lives.  You can get a street view or an aerial view.  Don’t believe me, just search for yourself.  You can even find home values and what a home sold for.  Nothing seems private or sacred anymore.

Why am I talking about Google Earth?  Because I read an article in Discover Magazine about what one employee (Rebecca Moore) did for a 1200 member tribe in the Amazon forest.  She was sitting in her office one day when the Chief of the tribe walked in and asked for her help.  He was the only member of the tribe to go to college and he discovered her and some of the things she exposed in the past (like mountaintop-removal mining in the Appalachia Mountains) while surfing the internet.  He also saw on Google Earth how loggers were steadily encroaching on his tribe’s lush, green rainforest.  She did help.  She went to his village and met the people and photographed them and the area.  A computer center with satellite-based WI-FI was set up for the people.  The next year she and her group went back with GPS-equipped Android smartphone so that they could document and photograph evidence of environmental crimes.  Not only that, but instead of industries around the world cutting their emissions, they will be allowed to pay this tribe to protect carbon-holding trees.  Works for both the tribe and the companies.

Don’t you just love it when a plan comes together for the good of all?  You all have a great day now, you hear?

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Happy Cinco de Mayo.

May 5th and it is Cinco de Mayo.  Maybe we should have some Mexican food to celebrate.  But like most all holidays, around here it is just another day.  I got a call yesterday and was informed that the parts to fix the power steps on my RV had finally arrived at the RV repair place, so I went up and picked them up.  Of course I didn’t start on the repairs, I couldn’t find an Allen wrench that would fit, so if I can’t find one at the flea market this morning, I will go to the hardware store before I come home.  Now, I will not have an easy excuse not to do it.  Would you believe that the big ole motor-home sits lower to the ground than a regular vehicle?  Maybe the air was dumped out of the air-rides.  I know it dumps the air as the first part of the leveling process, but I don’t use the levelers when it is just sitting in the driveway.

Have you seen the moon lately?  It is just so huge and bright!!!  I can’t remember when I had ever seen it so big and bright.  It is now at or near its closest orbit to Earth and according to last night’s News, it is thirty percent brighter than normal.  Before I hit the sack last night, the dogs and I went out and I took a look.  Wow, they were not kidding!!!  You all should take a look tonight.  If you can see to the eastern horizon, it will appear the largest when it first rises, but please look at any time or multiple times and let me know what you think.

The news last night also said that our area was having a problem with an overabundance of alligators.  Their population has exploded in the last few years and they are invading neighborhood ponds and bayous in heavily populated areas.  They have become a threat, especially to pets and small children.  Of course a 12 to 15 foot (or bigger) 100 year old alligator fears no one and looks at everything as food.  Even though I have a perfect habitat for them in my swamp, I have been lucky enough not to have any, at least not yet.  I don’t want them, although they would clean out the turtles, they would also clean out the bass, the wading birds, and become a bigger threat to our little dogs than that big old wild sow was.

Now, go have some Mexican food, listen to some Mexican music, and have a great Cinco de Mayo day.

Friday, May 4, 2012

No post today.

Don't worry, everything is OK.  I just got a little behind and will try to get back on schedule by tomorrow.  On schedule means just being a month or so behind.  You all have a great day now, you here?

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Wondering back to the Doc.

My wife hurt her back.  It seemed to start after we got back from setting up at the flea market.  It must have been from carrying all that money we made (grin).  Actually, it was probably a couple of things.  Getting the stuff rounded up and ready to go was one.  Getting in and out of the RV is another.  There are five steps up into it and it seems to be hard for her getting up and down them.  The third and probably the real reason was carrying the dogs around.  Anyway, they took X-rays yesterday and they want her back today to go over the problem and they want me to be there, too, and not just sit in the waiting room like I did yesterday.

I haven’t had any work at all this year and wouldn’t you know it, yesterday I got an email asking for a rush job.  It isn’t big, but since I have been cleaning out my office in hopes of replacing the rug with hard flooring, my work computer was not in operation.  I tried to work on my laptop, but couldn’t get the one program to run right and it didn’t have the reference material on it that I needed.  So, I found a stand, put it in front of the couch, and put the CRT monitor on it.  Got the computer sitting on the floor beside the couch.  I then did the flat layouts that my customer wanted.  The problem was I was in such a hurry I really screwed it up.  I was sitting here last night watching TV and it hit me what I had done.  I emailed my customer telling him to delete what I had sent him.  I called him this morning and confirmed that he was to delete it all.  He knows that I know how to do it, but sometimes I guess I just don’t think before I act.  He said that was OK that we all have had days like that.  Now, I better get it right this time.  You would think that I would learn to not rush, but it is hard to teach old dogs new tricks.

You all have a great day, now.  I got to run.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Just to let you Know

Just to let you know that I am not going to post a long blog today.  Have an appointment and some things to do in town this morning and have to get going.  So, you all hold the fort down for me today, you hear?

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Wandering to the Baytown “Royal Purple” race track-Part 2

I showed you the pit area yesterday and today, only one picture will be of some old cars in the pit area, the rest will be of the race track.  Now remember, a run down the track only lasts about 3.8 seconds and it takes my camera almost that long to decide to shoot.  I do believe that my old camera was quicker but it didn’t have a view finder and in the bright light of day, the view finder comes in real handy.  That means that I only attempted to take pictures of the burn outs and the cars either waiting to run or backing up after the burn out.  What I should have done was put it in video mode, but I didn’t.  Anyway, here are a couple typical burn-outs:

The Gieco car won that round.  OK, a couple of top fuel funny cars.  They, too, run 1000 feet at over 300 mph but they usually run in the low 4 second range whereas the top fuel dragsters run it in the high 3 second range, but finish at the same speed.  The dragsters are quicker than the funny cars but not much faster, if any.  Here is Mike Neff’s car (who won the race) burning out alongside of the Kalitta’s yellow car:
This is Ron Capps burning out.  He made it to the last round but ended up in second place, Mike Neff won the funny car race.
How about one more funny car burn out, OK?  No???  Well I don’t care what you say I am going to show another burn out, so there!
To round out the top three classes, here is a picture of the pro-stock cars getting ready to launch.  The pro-stock class races the full quarter mile vs. the top fuel cars which only run 1000 feet.  Of course I had to take a picture of my wife’s favorite driver’s car.
There were alcohol dragsters, alcohol funny cars, pro-stock bikes, slot races, and all sorts of classes that fall in between the top fuel runs.  The top fuel cars are given seventy five minutes to completely rebuild or replace their motors.  The pits in between runs are a hectic place.  Walk by and all you see is asses and elbows.  And oh yea, here is a picture of the seat in front of me, one of the three that I paid for.  My original seat is one row up from the other two.
These seats are directly up from the tree.  I think that it is a very good location.  I saw an old “woodie” that I snapped a picture of to show you all.  My uncle had a woodie back when I was a kid.  Always liked that car.
OK, I will not bore with drag racing again until next year.  You all have a great day now, you hear?