Wondering about wild grapes

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Message On a T-Shirt

I didn't get to go to the flea market yesterday but we did make our rounds today.  Got caught up with what the vendors are doing and what they have to say, if anything.  I go there to talk to everyone that I can.  Yep, I like to talk.

I spotted one vendor's T-shirt and told him that I liked what it said.  I had my camera with me and I should have taken a picture to help my memory, but of course I didn't.  To the best of my recollection, this is what it said:

"I lived under Ronald Reagan, Bob Hope,
and Johnny Cash.  Now I live under Obama
and there is no cash and no hope."
My wife got some garden gnomes and she is planning on painting them with outdoor paint to brighten them back up.  I am wondering where she is going to put them?  Whatever she does, I am sure they will be in a place that will brighten up the area.  Now, you all have a great day, you hear?

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Mobile Vet.

Sorry I am again late posting.  Had to help a friend and after I got home, I trimmed some limbs that were rubbing on the roof of my RV.  It is still really wet here, but the rain held off till late afternoon, but will probably rain tonight and tomorrow.

The day before yesterday, the Mobile Vet was in our area and they set up operations in a vacant area next to the feed store.  The last time that we went to see them we left the dogs at home.  Why?  Well, because all we needed was three month's supply of heartworm pills for them but this time they needed their shots.  Thank goodness it was cloudy, standing outside in line in the afternoon in Texas is not usually highly recommended because of the heat, but with the clouds and a gentle breeze, it wasn't bad at all.  There were long lines of people with dogs.  We went early and got a good spot in line but had to wait until the vets and their helpers got all set up.  Once that happens, the line moves fairly fast.

The first stop is at the table where they look up your pup's history, if you were there before.  Then we asked for another three month's supply of heartworm pills and paid for the pills and the examination/shots.  It didn't take long until the dogs got to see a vet and get their shots.  Back in the Jeep and headed home.  Didn't take long at all and it was just up the road a little ways from where we live.  Of course, the pups were real glad to get back home and into the AC.  Spoiled dogs?  That is for sure, even have their own chef, my wife who cooks special for them.  They eat very nutritious and tasty home cooked meals every day.  No, they aren't spoiled, the are just "special".  Now, you all have a great day, you hear? 

Friday, May 29, 2015

Wondering About the Worst US Disasters.

It seems that the U.S. disasters that took the most lives happened the furthest back in time and from natural causes.  The largest loss of life occurred in 1900 when a hurricane wiped out Galveston Island, Texas.  It claimed 6000 to 12,000 lives.  Since there were so many lost or missing, an accurate account could never be determined, but even the low number is still the highest loss of life that I could find and only shared that position with the 1906 earthquake and fire in San Francisco where 3,000 to 6,000 casualties happened.

The next, or 3rd most deadly disaster was also a hurricane that killed 3,000+ and caused huge amounts of damage.  The 4th disaster in loss of life was man made.  It was caused by terrorism when the hijacked airliners hit the twin towers in New York City and the Pentagon in D.C.  That caused over a billion dollars in damage, which is just a drop in the bucket compared to 108 billion that Hurricane Katrina caused, which was (so far) the costliest natural disaster in the history of the U.S.

The weatherman is calling for more rain, just what this rain-soaked and flooded area needs.  I guess those poor people who just got flooded out in Houston should hold off on the clean up.  Now make sure you all stay far away from any disaster and have a great day, you hear?

Thursday, May 28, 2015

What Are They Barking At??

Our dogs just love to bark at things.  It is like the story of the little boy who liked to cry "wolf"!  After awhile we don't take immediate action to see what it is that is disturbing them, although I sure don't need a door bell.
Yes, even are nice, cute little Shih-Tzu pups can make quite a racket.

Today, after I put them out, they started making quite a racket.  I figured there must be something bothering them and the thing I found has made them bark before; a turtle:

Can you see the scratch marks in the dirt on this side of the fence?  Those were made by my dogs trying to make the turtle move or get at it or what ever was on their mind.  Why was the turtle on the move?  Was it to lay eggs or did the heavy storms put too much water in the swamp and it was afraid that it would drown?

Sorry this is late getting posted.  Had to take the three pups up to the Feed Store where the Mobile Vet sets up once a month and we go there once a year to get our dogs their shots and heartworm medication.  A real nice service for us country folk with dogs.  They always have a huge turnout and today was no exception.  It was hot and they set up outside, so I feel much better getting back into the AC and the dogs are real happy to get home, too.  Sure hope you have a great day, you hear?

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Gurgle Grugle Gulp Gulp

We got a little Texas sprinkle of rain here in this area.  It started around 03:00 with some rumbling and flashes of light in the dark sky.  It moved in fairly fast and I couldn't seem to get back to sleep and of course my wife got up, so I did, too.  My oldest pup is deathly afraid of thunder (or anything that goes bang or boom) and she turned my rocker/recliner into a vibrating chair again.  Then it hit and it rained and it rained and it rained.  Everything is saturated and most of creeks and rivers are already full, so it didn't have anywhere for it to run off.  I am high and dry but some places were not so lucky, like Houston, for instance.  Here are some pictures taken in and around Houston:

And another "yesterday and today" pic:
The first picture below shows what that area normally looks like, the second picture was taken today.
And the next series of three pictures taken of the same area at different times (with time stamps) shows just how fast the water came up:
And of course, Houston wasn't the only place affected.  Up here in Montgomery County where I live had its share, too.

We had a 70% chance of rain predicted for the first part of today but after that big storm front moved through, they have dropped the probability down to 30% for the rest of the day and the rest of the week.  I can live with that.  So, I guess I can take off my water wings and enjoy the rest of the day.  Speaking of water wings, I wondered if they still make and sell them, so I looked it up, and yes they do.  Now, keep your powder dry and have a great day, you hear?

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Wondering About John Wayne.

John Wayne is one of my favorite actors and I bet he is either on top or high up on your list of favorites.  He played a lot of different parts in a lot of different pictures, but he is most remembered for his westerns and even today, public polls show him as one of the most popular actors of all time!!  But let's start from the beginning.

John Wayne was born on this day in 1907 in Winterset, Iowa.  When he was sixteen years old, his family moved to Glendale, California.  When he was a teenager, he got up in the mornings at 04:00 to deliver newspapers and in the evening he played football and made deliveries for some local stores.  After high school, he attended the University of Southern California on a football scholarship.  His football coach found him a job in 1926 as an assistant prop man on the set of a movie directed by John Ford.  Mr. Ford started using him an extra, and he moved up from there to become the star we all remember.

His last movie was in 1976, The Shootist, and in it he played a  gunfighter who was dying of cancer and at the time he was fighting lung cancer.  Three years later, John Wayne died of his cancer.  I am sure he knew he had cancer when he made that movie, don't you think so?  Now, let me know what you think of John Wayne and the characters that he played and make real sure you all have a great day, you hear?

Monday, May 25, 2015

Buried in a Corvette.

Back on this day in 1994, a fellow by the name of George Swanson got his final wish but he had to wait until he died.  Have you ever loved a vehicle that you owned?  Yes, I know you liked a few just as my favorite car that I owned was my 1957 Chevy convertible, but not near as much as ole George loved his car, a 1984 Corvette.  He decided he wanted to be with that car for eternity.  So, how did he make this happen.
First, he purchased 12 burial plots at a cemetery that was located about 25 miles east of Pittsburgh and then he left instructions that he was to be cremated and his ashes were to be placed in the drivers seat of his beloved car and the two of them to be buried in those 12 plots.  The cemetery didn't want to do that but then finally decided to allow it.  His wife said that "George always said he lived a fabulous life, and he went out in a fabulous style.  You have a lot of people saying they want to take it with them.  He took it with him."  And he did.
Here is a link to that site if you want to read the whole story:
Do you have any special requests for your final resting place?  I would like my ashes spread down the path from our old camp, "Trail's End" in Pennsylvania, to where the swinging bridge used to be over Big Coon Creek.  Of course after I am dead, it really doesn't matter, does it?  So, they can do with me what ever they want, the cheaper the better.  Now, you all have a great day, you hear?

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Wondering About Women's Shoes.

Before you even ask, I will say that I do not now or ever have worn women's shoes.  I prefer cowboy boots, my self and if I take them off I put on a pair of Crocs to wear around the house.  But, most women are different, they love shoes, love shoe shopping, and want multiple pairs of shoes.  Of course my wife is the exception. . .

I found some interesting (the nicest word I could think of to describe them) pictures on the Internet of some strange looking women's shoes and I thought maybe someone out there would be interested in seeing them.  Most of these need no explanation and even if they did, I couldn't explain them. . . but I will try.

This first pair is for some lady who wants to be a hoofed animal.  OK, what kind?  Is it a goat, a deer, . . . no, the hoof is not cloven or split, so it can't be a cow. 

OK, but why?

These are for people who would like to go bare-foot but have real tender feet or they are in a place that requires shoes to be worn:

So Punk?  You want to be tough?  Then get yourself a pair of these:

By the time you would get these on and all laced up, it would be time to start taking them off to go to bed. . . . again, why?

I guess these were designed for those women who just love to go bare-foot and feel the grass between their toes, but want the glamor of wearing high heels:

And this last pair. . . could they be for kick boxers' wives?

So, what do you think?  Do you have any explanation for those shoes?  Do you own any shoes similar to these?  Tell us if you do and are brave enough.  I guess anyone brave enough to wear stuff like this would be brave enough to tell.  Now, get your boots and shoes all shined and have a great day, you hear?

Saturday, May 23, 2015

A Special Day, A Special Person.

This is a special day for someone I love and believe them to be a very, very special person, my wife.  This is her birthday, and she is no longer 28, I believe that she just turned 29.  29 is a good age to be, right?  If she keeps on having birthdays, she may even catch up to me (grin).  And guess what she did?  Even though it is her birthday and she would never eat it, she cooked me my favorite, Louisiana white boudin sausage.  Yum, yum, it sure was good and I ate a whole great big plate full.

Well, I sure do need to do something special for her today or take her somewhere or something.  Not sure what or if I will be able to do anything special.  Oh well, I will just dedicate my blog today to the special lady in my life.  Now you all have a great day, you hear?  

Friday, May 22, 2015

What Was It?

Where you ever walking along and looked down and saw something you couldn't immediately identify.
 I did just that this morning when I carried the garbage can down to the end of the drive way.

Now ain't that pretty?  For the life of me, I couldn't think where that came from.  I had never seen any blooms around here that looked like that, not even mimosa.  Yes, there are some that color but not that shape.  So, I had to take a closer look.  Here, let me zoom in on that picture and post it here:

Yep, it is a piece of cloth.  OK, that just gives me another mystery to work on; where did that cloth come from?  Got any suggestions?  Aliens from the planet fabric, maybe? (grin)  Maybe the birds and squirrels and the rabbits have decided to try their hands paws at weaving.  Now, you all have a great day, you hear? 

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Wondering About Blog Comments and Stats.

I have been blogging for some time now and I have to admit that I can not ever figure out the response to my blog postings.  Some of them that I really thought were great would only get one or two comments and some that I was ashamed to post, got a whole lot of comments and pageviews.  So, I figured I would go to Blogger's stat page and figure it out.  And this is what I did:

First I listed seven of the blog postings that had the highest number of page views and after each I listed the number of comments:

89 - 18
89 - 11
96 - 13
97 - 16
89 - 19
100 - 10
116 - 14
676  - 101
That shows that there were 6.693 more pageviews than there were comments.  That means that there was only a little less than 15% of those who looked that commented.  Yes, I know that there are bots and other automatic search programs that view blogs and other postings, but I have no way of knowing how many were those programs and how many were real bloggers.  I can tell you that BillyBob of http://billybobsplace.blogpot.com was where the most hits on my blog came from.  Thank you, Billybob.
OK, maybe you all should check your stats and see who is visiting your blog site.  Now, make sure you all have a great day, you hear?


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Wondering About Wild Elephants.

 I think I will talk about elephants today.  If you have been reading my blog posting since the beginning, you may remember my blog posting about my son when he was an elephant handler and traveled with the Renaissance Festival and the elephants.  I even posted a picture where he had an elephant lay down and he put his foot on it as if he had bagged it on a hunting safari.

No, today isn't about that.  I am just going to give you a list of interesting facts (at least I hope you find them interesting) about them that I dug up on the Internet.

Adult elephants cannot jump.  But it’s a myth that it’s the only animal that can’t. It is joined by few others: rhinoceroses, hippopotamuses and lazy sloths.

Well, maybe they can't jump, but they sure can run:

Elephants kill more than 500 people every year. They have been known to also rape and kill grown rhinos.  Such incidents widely happened in Africa, India and Southeast Asia, in any place inhabited by elephants and they have been attacking, killing people, and destroying their houses and crops.

Dang, I wouldn't want to see this elephant chasing me.  I am not a fast runner and elephants can run at 15 mph.

The elephant's trunk serves as a nose, a hand, an extra foot, a signaling device and a tool for gathering food, siphoning water, dusting, digging and much more.  An elephant trunk becomes shorter through the life of an animal because of constant wear.
When times are tough for elephants, they comfort each other with touch.  They are highly empathic – they use their trunks to console each other.

Elephants can breathe through their foreheads.  Yes, they have internal nares, leading to their lungs, high on their foreheads.
Elephants are terrified of Bees and actually have a special, distinct vocalization for “Run away the Bees are angry.”
You can see more facts at the site that I got my facts from. . . here:

I sure hope that an elephant doesn't chase you but I would rather you have a great day, you hear?




Tuesday, May 19, 2015

On This Day in 1836 - Indian Attack

Back on this day in 1836, Cynthia Ann Parker, along with four other white women and children were taken prisoner by Kiowa, Comanche, and Caddo Indians.  Cynthia was only nine years old, and at the time she lived at what became known as Fort Parker at the headwaters of the Navasota River.  That area later became Limestone County.

Backtracking for a moment; When Silas and Lucy Parker (Cynthia's parents) left Illinois and moved to Texas, they built a tall stockade that was supposed to be able to hold off an army.  The problem was. . . well it was that there were no problems, so they just left the gates open for long periods of time.  So braves from the tribes listed in my first paragraph, came in through the open gate and staged a surprise attack.  Five of the Parkers where killed and five were captured.  The Comanche and Caddo divided the captives and Cynthia was taken by the Comanche and she lived with them for 25 years.  She had become a full-fledged member of the tribe and actually wanted to stay with the Indians and was happily married to Peta Nocona, a warrior, and had two sons and a daughter.

No, she didn't live happily ever after.  In December of 1860, a Ranger force attacked Nocona's village, mortally wounding Nocona and captured Parker and her daughter, Prairie Flower.  Cynthia resigned herself to an unhappy life with people that she no longer understood.  Prairie Flower caught influenza and pneumonia and died in 1863.  The unhappy Parker managed to survive for another seven years and then, she too, died of influenza in 1870.  I guess this story doesn't have a happy "she lived happily the rest of her life" type of ending.  Sorry for that, but I can't change history, although there are lots of times I would have really liked to do just that.  Now, you all keep your scalps and have a great day, you hear?

Monday, May 18, 2015

Wondering about some Laws.

There are all kinds of laws, like in-laws and out-laws.  But what about the laws that you could be arrested for if you broke any of them?  Well, there are still a lot of stupid and strange laws on the books, and the state I live in, Texas, has a lot of them.  I am only going to list seven of my favorites, and of course I have to comment after each one.  Here are some Texas laws that may just be a little on the stupid side:

1.  A recently passed anticrime law requires criminals to give their victims 24 hours notice, either orally or in writing, and to explain the nature of the crime to be committed.
OK, do you think that will give authorities enough time to arrest them?  Of course, since no crime was committed, they will probably get off Scott free.

2.   In Texarkana, owners of horses may not ride them at night without tail lights.
That is nothing new.  Way back years ago when I lived in Pennsylvania, if you rode a horse at night by the side of the road, you had to have a tail light.  And no, it was not attached to the horses tail, but to rear of the saddle.

3.  It is legal to commit a homicide as long as you tell the person when, and how you are going to kill them.
See my reply to #1.

4.  It is legal for the blind to go hunting as long as they have someone with them who isn't blind.
I guess instead of a pointer they would use seeing eye dog??

5.  It is legal for one to shoot a buffalo from the second story of a hotel.
OK, but just don't shoot one from the ground floor or any stories above the second.

6.  You are not allowed to eat your neighbor's garbage without their permission or you could go to jail.
Hey, tell that to our neighbor raccoons and dogs and other critters that I have for neighbors.

7.  You can be hung on the spot if you are a cattle thief and get caught.
Well, just don't get caught!!

There are a lot more but I believe these seven are sufficient to give you an idea of some old and/or stupid laws here in Texas.  I can think of a lot of other things that I would like to see made illegal, but maybe that could be a blog topic for some other time.  For now, you all obey the laws and have a great day, you hear?

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Wondering About Animal Crackers.

When you were a kid, did you like to get a box of animal crackers, open it up, and look at all the animals that were in it?  When you ate one, did you bite its head off first?  Do you remember what all animals came in the box and which ones did you like the best?  Actually, there were a few different kinds of animal crackers, but when I think of them, the Nabisco Barnum's Animals crackers are the first to come to my mind: 

Here are three more boxes with different pictures on them:

And do you remember what some of the cookies or crackers or what ever you call them, look like?
Over the years the animals changed and I hear that they are now coating them with chocolate!!  According to Wikipedia.org, there have been 37 different animals featured in Barnum's Animals Crackers since 1903.  The animals in the latest list are bear, bison, camel, cougar, elephant, giraffe, gorilla, hippopotamus, hyena, kangaroo, lion, monkey, rhinoceros, seal, sheep, tiger and zebra.  In 2002, to celebrate its 100th anniversary, they added the koala.
The other companies, Austin Zoo Animal Crackers, Cadburys Animals, and Stauffer's animal crackers have their own mix of animals.  I can remember way, way back 60 some years ago when I used to play and eat animal crackers.  Yes, that was one time and one food that I was allowed to play with (grin).  Now, eat your animal crackers and have a great day, you hear?

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Some Optical Illusions.

I love optical illusions and I bet some of you do, too.  If not, those of you who hate them can quit reading now and find another blog to look at.

This first one is the one I like best.  What does it look like to you?  To me it looks like a boy, leaning against a tree, and looking out over a pond that has the reflection of some of the trees around the pond.  OK, is that what you see?

Well, I was wrong and I bet most of you were, too.  Would you like to see what it really shows?  Just pan down and you will see the original picture.
OK, here is the original:

OK, this next one is a little easier.  Which one of the these pictures show the Leaning Tower of Pisa leaning the most?

They are both the same.  Don't believe me?  Well take something to measure the distance from the top left edge of the picture to the tower in both pictures.  It will surprise you to see that they are both the same.  I would have sworn that the one on the right was leaning more. . . Oh well, so much for my perspective.

Then I found a picture of a floor that someone with a sense of humor painted.  I don't think that I could walk a straight line on that floor and may even get a little nauseated.  How about you?

This last one is a painting of a landscape with buildings in the distance, a tree in the foreground with a lady on the other side of the tree.  What, you don't see the lady but you do see a huge face?  Well I think that the face and the lady are both there, but that can't be, can it?

That is all for today.  I hope you like the illusions as much as I do.  Now, have a great day and make sure it is real and not an illusion, you hear?

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Vehicle Inspection, etc.

I decided that since it is early in the month, I would run in and get my Jeep inspected since the inspection and license sticker will both run out at the end of the month.  Actually, so does my motorhome, but it will not start, so that will have to wait.  That old Jeep passed with flying colors and you know, that has been a really, really great vehicle.  It has a two speed transfer case and a neutral position for the transfer case so that it can be towed without dropping the drive shaft or putting it on a trailer.  Makes it really simple.

With the new laws that just went into affect, you can not get registration and sticker or plates (my plates are at the age that they will replace them) without proof of a current inspection.  Well that is done and one thing off my mind and the "to do" list.  Now, you all have a great day, you hear?

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Waiting on the Plumber

Got a bad leak under the house.  Shut the water off at the well.  Got no water and just waiting on the plumber to come.  Oh well, stuff breaks. . .

Have a great day and hope it is better than mine, you hear?

Monday, May 11, 2015

Fixed My Laptop

OK, I want to thank Rob at http://observations-on-the-road.blogspot.com/ for the helpful hint about fixing my laptop.  He told me that he went to YouTube and found directions for fixing his.  So, I did that, and it sounded really easy, and it was.  I didn't need to view the YouTube video more than once.

After removing a million or so screws I got the laptop case apart.  The case was smashed (yes, I dropped it awhile back) at the corner where the power cord plugged in.  At first I could wiggle the plug on the end of the power cord around and enough to straighten the plug in the computer enough to get it plugged in and make contact.  This last time that the battery needed charged, I couldn't get it plugged in, so an operation (maintenance) was required.  The following pictures are of the offending piece that I removed:

That exposed the plug and since the power cord will plug easily into it the way it is and charge the battery, why do anything else?  So this it the way it will look from now on:
It is great to have my laptop back on my lap and working well as I write this blog.  The only problem is that my right arm is hurting some from trying to pat myself on the back. (grin)  Now, you all have a great day, you hear?

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Computer Busted

My lap-top is busted.  The female plug for the power cord is all messed up.  I can't recharge it and the battery is now dead.  I am using my tablet to post today, but I hate this one finger typing and may not make another posting until the laptop is fixed.  Until then, make sure your day,s are all great, you hear?

Saturday, May 9, 2015

One of My Favorite Wildflowers and the Gardens.

Pulled in my driveway and parked and noticed a Coral Bean (Erythrina herbacea), one of my favorite wild flowers, starting to bloom right next to the driveway.  So, I snapped a picture of it:
I am going to bore you with pictures today, most taken of my wife's garden and some of her flowers.  Right after lunch, I walked out and took a lot of pictures, these first few are the vegetable garden:

I like squash.

And some flowers in the corner.

And this really tall one.  Yes, those are four-O-clocks on the left side.

A mixture of vegetable plants and flowers.

Then along side the house there are some flowers.

At the corner of the house I spotted some shamrocks in bloom that were planted by Mother Nature.  I am not sure what they are but I call them shamrocks.

Near the steps are some elephant ears.  We were late getting them put in and they are way, way behind where they should be by now.  Next year, they will come up on their own and if they are late, they will only have themselves to blame. . .

And of course one of our porches.
There, you got a tour of most of our veggies and flowers with a wild flower thrown in for good measure.  So far, we have had a good day and I hope you all have a great day, you hear?

Friday, May 8, 2015

Muffy, before and after.

This was grooming week and Wednesday was the day.  We dropped the three mutts off at 09:00 and they called to pick them up about four hours later.  They sure were glad to get home and since they get their daily feeding at noon, they stood around looking up at my wife saying, "Let's eat, let's eat!"  And of course, they got their wish since my wife had cooked up their food while they were gone.  It is always great to have them back again even though they were only gone for a few hours.  Yes, the house seemed so quiet and lonely when they were gone.  They are our kids you know!!

I took a picture of Muffy before she got groomed and after she got back home.  Can you see any difference?

 And After:
Sorry about the lighting in that first picture.  Somehow, the camera malfunctioned and red focusing beam was still on when the picture was taken.
Then of course, since the oldest gal got her picture taken, the youngest wanted hers taken, too.  This is before grooming:
Mr. Chang Le, for some reason, didn't get his picture taken.  He pretty much looks the same before and after grooming.  He doesn't have an undercoat like the gals do and his hair is long and straight, but he does feel softer and smells better after grooming.  He thinks he is king around here and is always found sitting beside my wife in her chair.  Now, you all pat your pet on the head, if you have one, and have a great day, you hear?