Wondering about wild grapes

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter and some riddles.

First, let me wish you all a blessed and happy Easter, a time to rejoice at the Resurrection of our Lord.  Now, go hunt the eggs that the Easter Bunny hid for you and that basket full of candy.  I love eggs fixed all different ways and hard boiled eggs are no exception.  I remember when I was a very young boy, I woke up one Easter morning and noticed some small roundish shadows on the blinds in my bedroom.  I just had to take a look and there they were, lined up on my bedroom window sill, beautiful colored Easter eggs.

How about a few riddles today to go along with the candy and eggs?  I will put the answers at the bottom, that way you will not have to wait until tomorrow.

1. What is in the middle of this month and next month (March and April) that can't be found at the beginning nor the end of either month?

2.  If you write down all the numbers from 1 to 99, how many sixes and sevens would in all would you have to write down?

3.  Can you remember back to the day when President Nixon took office?  It was in daylight and it was a clear day, but when he looked out of the window, he couldn't see the Empire State Building.  Why?

4.  A 22 year old healthy fellow works behind the counter of a "pick & mix" candy store.  He is 6'-4" tall with a 44 inch chest and size 12 feet.  What does this fellow weigh?

5.  Is it more correct to say "the herd of sheep is eating hay in the field" or "the herd of sheep are eating hay in the field"?

6.  And for you computer experts, how many binary numbers does it take to make a dozen?

Yep, I know that all my readers are very intelligent and probably answered all the above questions correctly, but for the few of you who may have had trouble with one of them, I will now give you the answers.

1.  An "R" is in the middle of each month.

2.  There is a total of 40 sixes and sevens.

3.  The White House is in Washington, D.C, and the Empire State Building is in New York City.

4.  He weighs candy.

5.  Neither is correct.  It should be a flock of sheep. . .

6. Why 12, of course.

Well, how did you do in my little quiz?  I hope you did better than I did.  Sometimes quizzes like this make me feel real stupid.  Now, you all have a great Easter, you hear?   

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Yesterday, I was wondering about sugar.  Now today, I will wonder about that other white stuff we find in most kitchens and on dinner tables most anywhere, salt.  We get most of our salt from salt mines (yes, there are salt mines and some people go off to the salt mines to work each day), some of which are located under Detroit city.  Ocean water can be evaporated to get the salt, but the mines are the quickest way.  Salt has been extremely important throughout history.

When most of us think of salt, we think of Morton.  It is the company with the slogan "When it rains, it pours" and comes in those round containers.  Now, I wonder why they are round.  Well, there is a practical reason.  They first tried to market it in cloth sacks, but it got lumpy.  Square boxes where next tried, but it lumped up in the the corners, so they went to the round container.  They also, at first, added magnesium carbonate to keep it flowing free.  Morton now uses calcium silicate to keep it from caking up.  So, yesterday we talked about sugar, today is salt, what should tomorrow be, pepper?  Have a great day because you are the salt of the earth, you hear?

Friday, March 29, 2013

Have you ever had a bag of sugar spoil?  Has a bag of sugar in your pantry ever gotten moldy?  I have seen lumpy sugar but never spoiled sugar.  I don't even know what spoiled sugar would look like or taste like.  Now, I realize that sugar is not good for you.  It feeds fungus growth in and on your body along with other ailments.  I really love sugar, but try to limit my intake of it.  But it got me to wondering why it doesn't spoil.

I like sugar, I bet you like sugar, and virtually all living creatures like sugar.  So, why doesn't sugar spoil, or get moldy, or get infested with small bugs like flower sometimes does?  The reason is that it is extremely dry.  It has a very, very low moisture content of about 0.02 percent.  Any invading organism would have its moisture sucked right out of them.  Sugar's extremely low water content also impedes chemical changes that could cause it to spoil.  Of course, if sugar is dissolved in water, it is a completely different story.  So, I guess it is best to keep both our sugar and our gun powder dry.  Now you all have yourself a very sweet day to day, you hear?

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Wondering about missing bloggers.

Since I started blogging about two and a half years ago, a lot of blogs that I followed have disapeared.  Some without any warning at all.  Kind of makes me wonder what happened to the authors.  Of course, some may have just quit, but why would someone who writes a blog everyday, just up and quit without letting the blogging world know?  There are some spuratic bloggers out there who just post when the whim hits them.  Their posting schedules make no rhyme nor reason and when they dissapear, you don't give it much thought.  I am talking here about the blogger who blogs everyday, only skipping a day now and then.  You know, like Ben at http://benntexas.blogspot.com/ Who passed away unexpectadly, at least to me.  He was younger than I was at the time and didn't seem to have anything wrong with him except leg cramps.  His family was thoughtful enough to add one more blog post telling us what happened.  Also, The Old Fool.  In his last blog posting, he said that he could not type or form words correctly.  The way he explained what was happening to him, I knew he was having a stroke.  That was the last I heard and figured he was gone.  I am not posting the link to his blog because it has been taken over by advertisers.

There have been others that dissapeared without any explanation.  Those I am still wondering about.  For instance, I followed Kathy at http://www.kathappyhaven.com/She was complaining about having bronchitis on her last blog, but she didn't sound like she was anywhere near death.  But, she never posted another blog.  Her last blog was posted on 05-04-2011 and I still do not know for sure if she is alive or not.  I believe that she was my age.  Just per chance any of you know any more information about her, let me know.

I sure hope when I die, someone will let you all know and not leave you up in the air. . . wondering.  Dang, I had to get the word wondering in here.  You all have a healthy and very happy day today, you hear?

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Wondering what time it is?

What time is it?  Now, that seems to be a simple question that would have a simple answer.  But, it would depend where you where.  Now tell me, if you were in Antarctica standing right at the South Pole (or at the other end of the earth standing at the north pole if the ice hasn't melted yet), that question would be a little harder to answer.  All the time zones run together at the poles.  At least you don't have to worry when daylight savingstime starts or ends if you live at the poles.

So, what time is it at the poles?  Since no one lives at the north pole except Santa Claus (and he only cares what day Christmas falls on) it is a mute point.  But, people do live at the south pole.  There is a lot of reseach that goes on down there and in fact it is a great place to observe the sky.  No city lights and during our summer here, they are having almost day long darkness.  It is far enough away from civilization that interference is at a minimum.  But, being directly at the south pole does present a problem if you are keeping a log and want to put the time down when something happened.  I guess since all the time zones run together at the poles, you can take your choice.  Well, that could be solution but I have read that they use to use GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) but that is no more, it is history.  Now they use UTC (Coordinated Universal Time).  I am also wondering, don't they have the initials mixed up?  Shouldn't be CUT instead?  Maybe they didn't like it to spell the word "cut"?  I guess I will just have to keep on wondering about it. . . Now no matter what time you use, have a great day today, you hear?

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Wondering about highballs.

Since both my grandpas worked on the railroad, one was a conductor on the B&O railroad and the other was an engineer on the Pennsylvania railroad, I can safely say that I came from a railroading family.  Therefore, when I think of highball, I think of it in railroad terms other than in an alcoholic drink.  So, what is it that I am wondering about?  I am wondering why they call two such different things by the same name and why were they given that unusual name.  Let me start with the railroad.  Back in the old days, if a train station didn't have any pasengers, mail, or freight to load onto the next train, it would hoist a ball up onto the top of a mast so that the engineer could be signaled to keep on rolling down the track and that he didn't need to waste time stopping at the station.  The train would just speed past that station without stopping.  Later, any fast moving train, especially one speeding past a station, was said to be highballing it down the tracks.  Now, I wonder why it is always "down" the tracks or "down" the road.  Maybe a subject for another day.

Now, for those of you who abibe every so often by having a "highball" at a bar, have you ever wondered why it is called a highball?  It is believed that term was derived from some slang back in the late 1800's when the bartenders called their bar glasses "balls".  So, a tall glass was called a highball.  Yep, I bet you just couldn't live another day without having this important information, right? (grin)  Now, be real careful if you are highballing down the tracks or the highways especially after having a few highballs, you hear?

Monday, March 25, 2013

Wondering about playing cards and golf.

I got to wondering about the face cards in a deck of regular playing cards.  From history and watching old cowboy movies, I know what the face cards are (and from personal experience).  In real life I know what a King in.  So, that card isn't too hard to understand and the reason it is is the highest value of any face card.  Now, if you got a King you must have a Queen in real life and in playing cards.  OK, I understand why there is a Queen playing card, but what the heck is a Jack suppose to be?  Do you have any idea?  Maybe its other name will help.  It is also called a Knave, which in years past was a servant of royalty.  That is why it is the lowest value face card.

Now, I am going to talk about golf.  I do not, nor ever have, played a round of golf, so I am not an expert on the subject.  Therefore, I will not tell you how to improve your game.  I am sure that if I ever played a round of golf I would win because I would have an extremely high score!!  But, what I am wondering about is why golfers yell "FORE" when their air born ball is heading for another party of golfers.  Any of you golfers out there know why you use this term?  Well I am going to tell you.

It is an old military abbreviation.  When troops were firing in lines, one line being in front of anther line, the command "ware before" warned the troops in the front line to keep their heads down because the line of troops behind them were fixing preparing to fire.  So, you see, "FORE" is just a shortened version of the "before" in "ware before".  I am sure if tried to play a round of golf I would go horse yelling that word to protect everyone else on the course.  Now, whether you golf or fish or what ever you do, just have a great day, you hear?

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Wondering about seeing spots.

I got to wondering about seeing spots.  You see, I have some "floaters" in my eyes and I see spots floating in air every so often.  All I have to do is look up and down real fast and the floaters drift off.  Where did they come from?  Could be from anything, but since I did have cataract removal surgery, I presume it is some small bits of old blood.  I also had a partially detached retina at one time and it was laser welded back in place.  When it detached, it ruptured a small blood vessle.  This is not what I was wondering about.  I got a little sidetracked but wanted to give you a little background.  So let me get to what I was really wondering about.

I like watching the little lizards (they are actually called an anole) around my house and on the screen and back porch and deck.  They change color from green to brown.  The males have a bright red protrosion that they can extend from the bottom of their throat area.  They are really good hunters.  They can shoot their tongue out and capture insects at quite a distance.  Now, I wonder, what if they saw spots???  Would they be trying to catch the spots with their tongue?  Would they know that they were spots and not small insects?  Sometimes I try to chase away the "insects" that actually were the spots that I see.  I guess I will have to sit outside and watch them for a long period of time to see if any just try to catch something with their tongue that isn't there.  Now, since I see spots, will I know the difference if they are seeing bugs or just trying to catch spots (grin)?

Sorry for stupid blog today, but I do wonder about stupid things sometimes.  Now you all have a spotless day today, you hear? 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Wondering about some road-side flowers.

 We went down to the Cut and Shoot Post Office to pick up and send our mail yesterday as we do every day except Sunday.  I noticed that there were some pretty flowers growing along the road so I went further down the road and turned south on the Loop.  There is a turn-a-round where the loop goes over the railroad tracks.  There is very little traffic that uses it, so I could take my time and snap a few pictures from the car window.  Yes, I know that these "wild" flowers were planted so technically they aren't wild, right?  There was a mixture of Blue Bonnets, Indian Paint Brushes, and some purple flower you will see in the last picture.  This time of year has a lot of beautiful flowers and these sure are:

This one shows how close they grow to the road:

 Another patch of Blue Bonnets:

And a mixture of  different wild flowers:

Don't forget, you can click on the pictures to enlarge them.  Just thought everyone could use some wild beauty in their lives this Saturday morning.  Now, you all have a great day, you hear?

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Day off for repairs.

No post today.  Must take the day off to take care of some urgent repairs.  Maybe tomorrow?  Now you all have a great day, you hear?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Wondering about hair.

As far back as I can remember, I always had a question that I haven't found an answer that satisfies me.  I have Googled it and have gotten some answers but not a complete answer to my satisfaction.  After researching it, I still don't completely understand it.  By now you are probably wondering what the heck I am talking about.  From the title of this blog you may have guessed correctly that it is something about hair.  Yes, I know I have a lot of it, since it has been five years since I have been to a barber or shaved.  My question is why does hair only reach a certain length except for Crystal Gayle's extra, extra long hair.  The last time I saw her on TV she had to put it in her pocket to keep from tripping over it.  She is amazing but I believe unique in that her hair does not know when to stop growing.

What I am trying to say, an individual or animal has a set length that the hair will grow.  Now tell me, just how many of you have had the hair on your arms grow a foot or two long?  You say it doesn't grow any?  Well then why when it is shaved off does it grows back to the same length?  I guess each hair folicle has a preset length that it will allow its hair to grow.  I can understand that, but what I don't understand is how does it know that an inch is cut off the end of it?  You can cut a dog's hair and it will grow back to where it was.  Will someone please explain it to me.  Now, go comb your locks (if you have any) and have a very great day this first day of Spring, you hear?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Wondering if this is sort of a continuation.

I guess this is a continuation of two of my recent posts.  Let's just go back a couple of days to this blog that I did about quilt tops.  You can click HERE to go back and take a look.  I thought that I would add a picture of another quilt top that she got.  I do believe there may be some more, not sure.

Went to Wal-Mart for supplies yesterday and when I parked in front of this Jeep, so I took a picture out my windshield to show you that both my Jeep and that Jeep was covered with pollen?

As I told you in my blog a view days ago http://dizzydick.blogspot.com/2013/03/wondering-what-caused-yellow.html about what causes the yellow pollen.
OK, I am back.  Sorry for being late posting this blog but an old customer called needing some changes to some drawings before 13:00 because representatives of G.E. were coming to see some proposals.  I actually had to make new drawings, but got them done and emailed just in time.  So, I had a quick lunch and now I will post my blog.  I just want to put an end to all the rumors that I died or am happily driving down the highway in my motor-home.  I hope the latter comes before the first (grin).  Now you have a great day today, you hear?

Monday, March 18, 2013

Wondering about a bit of space history.

If you are a long time reader of my blog you know that I am spaced out over stuff in space.  I have multiple telescopes from small up to a one with a 16 inch diameter mirror.  Science and math were my favorite subjects in school.  Spelling was my worst.  If it were not for spell checker, you probably wouldn't be able to read my blog.  OK, that being said, I have a bit of "space" history for you today.  Does any of you know what happened back a few years ago on this date in the world's space race, what year did it happen, which country was involved, who was involved, and why was it considered notable?  OK, take a few minutes and try to remember.  If you can only get one of the answers right, you are to be congratulated on remembering you space history.  I remember it, but I didn't remember names or dates, so I don't expect you to remember all of it.
OK, do you have the answer?  For those of you who do, I congratulate you, you have a much better memory than I do.  For those who got part of it, congratulations.  I would have had to just guess and would may have gotten part of it but not all.

I know, you are tired of waiting for the answer.  Here it is.  It was on March 18th, 1965.  The feat was done by a Russian cosmonaut named Alexi Leonov.  His space craft was named Voskhod 2 and he was the first man to take a "space walk" wich lasted for twenty minutes.  Also, the United States launced Gemini 3 with Gus Grissom and John Young going along for the ride.  Now, that was realy quite an active day in space history.  I hope your day is a little more down to earth and it is as nice as it is here.  It is suppose to be close to 90 degrees here today and then a cold front will come through and cool things down about 20 degrees.  You all have a great spaced out day today, you hear? 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Saturdays haul from the flea market.

I tried to get this blog written and posted this morning early but didn't even get it started.  Better late than never, right?  Or maybe never would be better for my blogs.  Anyway, first let me wish you a happy St. Patric's day.  We took our weekly pilgrimage to the local flea market yesterday, so I thought maybe you would like to see what we brought home.  I usually don't buy anything, but I did yesterday.  I will get to that later.

My wife purchased 7 hand stitched old quilt tops that cost five dollars for all seven.  They looked to be for a Queen or King size bed, because they cover the top of our King size bed.  Since a picture is worth a thousand words, I don't feel like writing a thousand words to explain each one so I will just post some pictures of a few of them:

I saw this framed "tips for gun safety" poster and just had to buy it:

Well, that was the extent of the treasure we found at the flea market yesterday.  Now I hope that you all can find treasure in your life and will have a great day this St. Patric's day, you hear?

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Wondering what caused the "yellow".

 Yesterday, I told you how everything is turning yellow and that everyone drives a yellow car.  I am going to show you pictures of what caused all this yellow:

Do you see the buds and new leaves forming?  This next one was an early riser.  It has leaves on it already:

 And some more.  Notice how blue the sky was.  Not a cloud int the sky:

 This is out at the end of my open entrance field.  The trees are across the road:

 And this last one is looking along a section of my driveway that runs parallel with the road but a few hundred yards back from the road:

May you day be full of blue skies and mild temperatures so that you can have a great day, you hear?

Friday, March 15, 2013

Wondering about the "yellow" season.

Some places have four seasons, some places have less than four, and some places have more than four.  Our area has many seasons.  The longest one is our HOT season.  We also have a winter, sort of, when the leaves fall off the hard wood trees.  So, therefore, we must also have a spring season when the leaves return.  I call it the "yellow" season.  Why?  Because everything is yellow!!  Everyone drives a yellow car, too.  I tried to go out this morning and get a picture of my "yellow" jeep that used to be khaki colored but the dew was too heavy this morning.  That was a disappointment, but on my way back into the house I noticed my garbage cans sitting on the end porch had a little bit of the pollen on them.  Now, yesterday was garbage pick-up day so most of the old pollen would have been knocked off and what you see is fresh.

It doesn't show up too well in the picture.  I guess I should have written my name on it with my finger to show that it is suppose to be a lot darker blue.  What I should have done was take a picture of the Jeep yesterday when we got back from the post office.  I even had to use the windshield washer and wipers.  A picture then would have shown you just how bad it is.  The pine, oak, ash, elm, and just about everything else is supplying the pollen.  People with severe allergies are really suffering.  Even my sinuses are bothering me some.  Now, the next bad season will be the Love Bug season.  This pollen washes off easily, but not the stinking love bugs.  Now, don't get me wrong, I am not complaining, just telling it like it is.  Now, you all have a great day today and hope your day is not going to be yellow, you hear?

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Wondering what I got?

Went back to the blood specialist.  Remember my blog back on March 5th about going to the specialist and getting ten viles of blood taken for testing?  Well, yesterday I went back to the doctor to get the results.  He told me that I had  Chronic Myeloid Leukemia or CML for short.  Look it up.  There was some good news along with the bad.  The bad news was that this disease will kill me.  The good news is that I will probably die before it kills me.  He said that survival rate is around 18 to 20 years.  That would put me at 88 or 90.  Heck, and here I thought that I could match my Dad's brother who made it to 100.  Guess my uncle is going to win.

On the other hand, this has been the most beautiful week, weather wise, we have had in a long time.  I couldn't be more perfect.  The sky has been a very pretty blue with no clouds at all.  I took a walk around my place the other day and everything is blooming and all the trees are green but. . .  Sixbears said that he had a fifth season called the mud season.  Well, we her in East Texas also have a fifth season, it is the yellow season.  Everything is yellow.  Everyone drives a yellow vehicle.  If you stay outside too long you too will turn yellow.  That is how bad the tree pollen is this time of year.  The next bad season will come shortly.  That is the love bug season in which your vehicle gets plastered with messy smelly love bugs as you drive down the road.  Don't you just love Spring time?  I do.  Now you all have a great day today, you hear?

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Wondering about the comet.

On yesterdays blog, I reminded you to look for the comet.  I went out just after the sun set and looked west.  I was pleasantly surprised!!  I was not expecting to see such a bright comet, especially before it got dark.  It was spectacular!!  If I had known it was going to be so bright I would have gotten out one of my smaller telescopes but with just a pair of binoculars, I could make out its double tail and extra bright ball at the front.  To me from my viewing area, I believe it was brighter than comet Hale Bopp that showed up back in 1997.  This comet (C/2011 L4 Panstarrs) is just starting to put on its show.  It will return.

I took some pictures, but with my little inexpensive digital pocket camera, I could not zoom in enough to show the double tail.  You will have to take my word for that.  My wife suggested I take a picture though my binoculars, but I said I didn't think I could hold it steady enough.  I should have tried.  Anyway, some pictures.  On this first one, I put a yellow arrow point to the comet in case you had trouble spotting it:

And a close up of the above picture?

OK, you find it in this picture:

Here it is, hiding in the trees:

I moved over some to get one last picture of it that wasn't partially hidden by the trees:  Can you see it in this picture?  It shows up better than in the last one:

OK, here it is in this cropped picture:

That did make my evening, for sure.  Today is the day I go back to the doctor's to find out the results from those ten viles of blood that he took to test for a whole list of things.  I sure do hope all the tests are complete.  Regardless of what the doc's report is or what he says, I am going to have a grate day and I hope you all have a great day, too, you hear?

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Wondering about kitchen sinks and a "tinker's dam".

The double bowl sink that most of us have in our kitchens actually had some design thought put into them that we just take for granted, at least I didn't know.  I bought a book at the flea market a week or so ago called IMPONDERABLES by David Feleman and I have since learned some fascinating things.  It is a wealth of blog ideas but I will try to only use it when, like yesterday, I don't have a thing to say.  But, before we go there, let me remind you to look to the left of the crescent moon tonight to see a comet.

Now, back to the double kitchen sink.  Have you ever noticed that they do not have overflow holes like your bathroom sink does and most tubes?  Why, you may ask?  A couple of reasons.  First, the divider between the two bowls may be lower than the top of the sink, therefore if one side clogs up and over flows, it will over flow into the other side.  That should be the case but not my kitchen sink, the divider is not any lower but there is a slightly higher rim all around the outside to keep any water from getting out onto the counter.  Works the same way.

Now, since we are talking about kitchen stuff, I will tell you what a tinkers dam is and why it ain't worth much.  Back "in the day" if a pot or pan got a hole in it, the people had a person called a tinker to come and fix those pans.  He would solder them up.  To keep the solder contained only where the hole was, he would build a dam out of clay.  After the solder job was complete, the clay dam was removed and discarded.  It wasn't worth a tinker's dam.  I was doubly surprised.  One was to learn what it was and two, to find out it wasn't spelled damn.  Damn, I was wrong again!!!  Sometimes my memory isn't worth a tinker's dam. . . Now, you all have a great day, you hear?

Monday, March 11, 2013

I got nothing!!

I got nothing to say today.  Why?  Because I can't think of anything, that's why.  I am brain dead this morning.  I suppose I could use the excuse that the change to daylight savings time did it to me, but I get up out of bed when I want to.  Well, I guess that ain't the exact truth.  The two dogs that sleep on the bed (it is a king size and has lots of room) get up early and I let them out in the main part of the house.  The youngest one who still sleeps in her house (cage), sleeps in a lot longer and when she is ready to get up, I get up.  Sometimes, like this morning, I got up first and made her get up.  Turn around is fair play, right?

I love my pups and can't imagine life without them.  It seems that our lives seem to revolve around our dogs.  I guess they are our kids now and a comfort to our old age.  Now you all have a great day today, you hear?