Thursday, February 22, 2024

bark box humor quickie

A friend gives my daughter's dogs The Bark Box.  { You can find it on line. }  He babysits 2 of our dogs on a fairly regular basis.  He is known as Uncle Thomas.  Of course, the dogs know that.

This weekend, he paid a visit with the February Bark Box in tow.  The dogs attacked the toys immediately.  No bars held.  Hold no bars.  What is that saying?   (cookies were saved till later)

As dogs will do (congrats to Bella), eventually a dog toy split in half and the blue squeaker hit the floor.  I grabbed it.  A dog does not need to eat a squeaker.  It does still squeak though.

The squeaker has a message which seems to exemplify the humor of the Bark Box people:


"GAME OVER

YOUR DOG WON

DISCARD THIS

SQUEAKER"

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

left side vs. right side vs. spectracide

                      So, which are you?  You should know y'know.

First of all, spectracide has nothing to do with this.  I used the word because it rhymes & is spelled differently than the other two.  The first word I thought of was suicide.  That rhymes too.  People get really worked up when suicide is mention however in passing.  That was cute.  Passing / suicide.  Wish I had planned the connection ahead of time.  Anyhoo, I abhor suicide.  I don't understand how someone could get so messed up they think this is a solution.  Yeah. Yeah.  It is a solution sorta.  But, it is not a good solution.  The suicide person is not the victim.  Those left behind are the ones who suffer.  I'd think that was a tad bit selfish.  Maybe I don't understand it all completely.

Moving on.  Spectracide is a weed poison.  Use it at your own will.

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When I was much younger, I went to bed at night by lying on my stomach with my head facing to the right, right arm bent in front of the nose.  I did that for years.  Of course things changed some when I married.  That has a tendency to alter past habits to some degree.  

Aside:   When I went to college, Tech, I had to live in the dorm my Freshman year.  Brother Jim was my roommate.  We could function together.  Jim's previous roomie was Gerald Heath, a hometown Levelland boy who was a pretty good friend throughout high school.  Gerald's father was our barber. . . a real cut-up.   (wish I hadn't said that)  Before the year was out, Jim and Gerald were growing apart.  Gerald loved Jonie James, a female singer in the 50s.  He played her records often.  Personally, I can't stand the way she sings - all that scooping and namby pamby voice.  Apparently, Jim couldn't either.  He took one of her records and rolled it down the dorm hallway with satisfying results - for him, not Gerald.

Soph. year, we found a garage apartment just a block south of the campus.  In the beginning it was roach infested.  Several efforts were made to correct the problem.  Jim & I had twin beds stuffed in a tiny bedroom.  They were probably 12 to 15 inches apart. As a joke one night, as I climbed into bed, I used my hand to beat on the bed  "to kill any bugs in the bed."  We thought it was funny at the time.  I did it again the 2nd night.  Not as funny.  By the 10th night, Jim was getting upset.  It became a habit that year.  I couldn't go to sleep unless I patted the bed - even so slightly and quietly.  Jim had certain names for me...won't list here.

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Time went by.  I evolved into a left side sleeper on the left side of the bed.  it seemed that was the most comfy position.  Streisand has a song about rolling over and going to sleep.  I suppose this was me.  Then, about 4 - 5 years ago, I was dreaming that a ball was rolling past me.  I grabbed for the ball and rolled out of bed.  I cut my left ear pretty good on the bedside table.  Wrote about this in a previous episode.  This bothered me a bunch.

Now, right now, we moved to Salado.  We have always had a double bed.  There is a certain closeness that comes with a double vs. the queen and king.  We seemed to like it.  Then, my wife's illness came up.  I figured I needed a bed where the individual sides would raise and lower.  I could see her spending extra time in bed.  It hasn't happened yet.  There is so much extra room in that bed.  Equivalent to two twin size beds, there is room to toss and turn without bothering anyone.

What has happened is that I have turned into a right side sleeper.  I can face to the inside of the bed and not be breathing on my wife.  There is so much room.  Turns out the raising and lowering has no effect - or is that affect?  It is both.

So which are you?  left side sleeper?  right side sleeper?  back sleeper?  stomach?   I ALWAYS wake up on my back.  It doesn't matter the starting position, the back wins at night.  In 63 years of marriage, I've always slept on the left side of the bed.  Is that normal for people?  Even on the honeymoon, I can remember sleeping on the left side because it was closest to the door - being closer to the door was me protecting my bride - I was so naive.

---- smiley face ----

I was once told (gossip) about a man who would get naked, wrap himself up completely in a sheet like a mummy or cocoon, lay down on the foot of the bed crosswise in order to sleep.  Wonder where his wife slept.  Maybe she was really short.  Sometimes when I think my sleeping habits are strange, I think of this guy.  He needs help.

----

Here is the real question:  Now that you have read this, are you glad you read to the end?  I appreciate your effort.  Next week we take up the riveting issue, how to sit in a recliner vs. high back wooden chairs.

Little next aside.  Son Roger just sent a text that his PSA is <.01.  Considering the prostrate problems we have all had, this is great news.  Didja ever notice, men never talk about the prostrate in public?  Why is that?  I guess we are too tough to whine.

Fine'

mtz  

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

short meat stone

I did something today that I have never done.  I bought some meat from a truck that was cruising the neighborhood.  I've seen them around before.  The company is out of Ft. Worth - something like 3 brothers.   Put a question mark on that ??  Anyway, the family & I had discussed it before.  So, I bit the bullet and bought a box with 4 steaks.  I figure we'll eat them sometime way down the road.

In my opinion they were too expensive.  I don't ever plan to do it again.  Why did I do it this time?  Suppose I was hungry for real meat - other than hamburger and chicken bits.  I'v seen the Schwann truck selling meat over the years.  Thought I'd try it once and no more.  This company is not schwann.  Next time when I want real meat, I'll just go to the grocery store.

That's the end to this tune. There will be no D.C. or D.S. with a coda.  Fine.  

Friday, February 9, 2024

puppies

 I do love puppies.  They can gnaw on your fingers with minor pain..And their breath - puppies have a special "puppy breath."  Once you've smelled it, you'll never forget.

Tomorrow, Sat., a bookstore in Belton is having a get together for folks - Rock and Read.  Cute name.  Some proceeds going to some charity; I don't know which - didn't bother to read the article close enough. The best part (bring your children) is for $5 you can go into the Puppy Kissing Booth.  I know a great bit when I hear it.  This is a great bit.  I'd almost (ALMOST) be willing to do that myself.  I do love puppies.

Puppy Kissing Booth.  What a deal!!!

Reread the article.  Benefits Tiny Hooves Rescue.  Cost $12 to enter.  Free pizza, etc. and a free children's book.  Add $5 for the Kissing Booth.  I wonder if you could have a giraffe kissing booth at a zoo?  Those giraffes have fabulous tongues.  A cat on the other hand probably wouldn't mess with kissing.  Their tongues are a bit rough for a festival.

Then, on Sunday = S U N D A Y !! = we have the puppy bowl on TV.  I have tried to watch that show.  I have tried.  It is cute to watch if you can do it with sound off.  The narrators really ruin it for me.  Maybe, I just haven't watched & listened to it enough.

But, most will watch the Super Bowl.  Do they watch for the game or the commercials?  There is something wrong with watching any show just to see a commercial.  I try to record most shows so I can zoom past the commercials.  I must have an attitude.  Not being a massive football fan, watching any game rarely happens.  As a matter of fact, I can proudly say that I have never watched one Super Bowl Game (other than a moment or two)  AND  I have been around for them all.

Yep, I'd rather watch my Supper Bowl.  

My running bit is to predict the winner (sinner) of the game.  Here it is!  Call Las Vegas and get down your bets!

The Brooklyn Dodgers will handle the Washington Senators 24 to 12.

see ya,

m

 

Wednesday, February 7, 2024

Hoxie Bridge revisited

This is a post I posted in 2010.  It was originally written in 2005 as my wife & I retired and begin to do a bit of motorhome travel.  Once in a while, I like to re-post something just because.  Can I really expect folks to go back and read what was scribbled in 2010?  Nah.  Most of them are probably not worth reading regularly.  Nuff.   Here is HOXIE BRIDGE unabridged.  If I add a comment, it will be in green or white.

=========================================================================

Over time I will revisit past etudes I have written to friends and relatives.  Here is one of my favorites written back n 2005.  [Side bar notes have been added in this obnoxious color.]
The Hoxie Bridge

After retirement from teaching, Brenda, my wife of 43 years, (it has been longer now - 43 years was then, this is now) (and about 62 in 2023) and I sold our house in Pflugerville, Texas, and moved into our motorhome. Journeying with us are our three wirehair miniature dachshunds (weiner dogs): (if you follow my blugs, you will know that I have 5 now {2010} - these three remain on staff.)

Greta, a cute little blond, is the smallest coming in at about 8 lbs.,
Fritz, a black & tan 20 lb. loving fuzz ball, and
Leisl, a brown & white piebald who gets nervous about things.

Last week, we moved to the Granger Lake Corps of Engineers park. Granger Lake is about 20 some miles east of Georgetown, TX, 8 miles north of Taylor, and right beside a nice little town of Granger. For those who haven't heard, Corps Parks are great for retirees. Once you are eligible for the "Golden Age" Passport, (cute title - probably dreamed up by a 22 year old girl in the front office) -- you can stay in a Corps Park for half price...dogs are free.

Half Price is about 9 or 10 dollars a night. For this you plug into electricity and hook up the water. Sewer does not exist at Corps Parks usually. Now, that's not true. Sewer is down the block. You go down there and empty your sewer tanks. Sewer Tanks can be a whole different subject for another day.

Granger Lake has 3 different parks or areas. We are on the south side at “Taylor Park” in space 4. This space backs up to a wall of trees and ground that falls off radically to somewhere green. A small dark creek trickles at the bottom of the green.

After we parked on Thursday - and rested appropriately, we rounded up the dogs for a short walk around one of the legs of the figure 8, or loops if you prefer. Not 20 feet down the road, I noticed an orange structure to the right, behind the motorhome, down in the creek bed. It is a bridge, a one way bridge going nowhere in the middle of the wilderness. A narrow path leads down to the bridge.

Taking the dogs in tow, we continued down the path. The bridge is at the bottom of a steep path - no road, old or new, is in evidence. It extends across a deep ravine with an ugly creek creaking along - or whatever a creek does. Babbling brook certainly does not apply to this waterway. The floor of the bridge is 2 x 8 boards fastened to the steel structure. At the far side of the bridge is a sign post explaining the reason behind the structure.

I paraphrase the sign: The Hoxie bridge was built in the early 1900s east of here. It was built with prison labor (local prisoners). One of them tried to escape and was shot. To make a point, the guards hung his body from a nearby tree. He was never given a proper burial. For years after, his ghost was said to haunt the bridge at midnight on Friday nights. At one point a priest came out and performed a religious service which was said to send the ghost on his proper way. About 15-20 years ago, the unused bridge was moved to its present location by volunteer workers and has set here since.

[So you will understand the "why" behind the next thing -- My process at bedtime is to take each of the 3 dogs out for a wetting. Greta goes first (she is the smallest) followed by Liesl and Fritz in that order. This usually happens between 11 and 1 a.m.]


The following evening as I prepared to close it down for the night, I held Greta in my arms and took the steps down to the grass. Usually when she is put down (she can't climb down the stairs by herself), Greta paces about sniffing until she locates just the right blade of grass - then she squats.

That night, hitting the yard, she immediately went into a freeze position staring into the thicket behind the motorhome. We stood; she did not wet.

I heard voices down on the bridge. It was a group of kids talking. On the road to my left 2 young girls walked. They were covered head-to-toe with beach towels. In the dark of the night, all I could see was the tuff of their hair and the flip-flops on their feet. They moved slowly to the edge of the bridge path. Greta watched; she did not wet. Behind me in the motorhome, Liesl and Fritz barked for their equal time.

The young girls slowly moved down the path, not venturing over 15 feet before freezing into their pose. Greta had not moved a muscle. From the bridge I heard an older voice speak,


"Oh Spirit of Hoxie Bridge, show yourself. Come to us ole spirit of Hoxie
Bridge. We want to see you." His voice continued; the girls didn't move;
I checked my watch. It was midnight, and it was Friday night. Greta
still frozen, watched; she did not wet.

I raised my extra heavy duty flashlight pointing it into the woods near the bridge; I flipped the switch on. All of a sudden everything broke loose. The people on the bridge began to run. The girls screamed, flip flops flip-flopped away from the bridge - up the path - back home as fast as their young legs could move, beach towels flowing behind like capes. Screams galore. The sound of many boys yelling and running across a wooden bridge is a racketing noise. They emerged from the woods. I would guess 8 to 10 bodies came flailing up the path.


Greta watched; she did not wet.

Within a moment or two, all was silent. There were no girls in beach towels flip-flopping. There were no boys yelling and running up the path. There were no more noises drifting up from the bridge. It was now past midnight on a Friday night. Oh, to be a kid again seeking ghost at midnight on a deserted, haunting bridge. I miss those days.

Greta and I stood, watching for another few minutes. She didn't move, and she didn't wet. Greta held it all night long. Liesl and Fritz came out and performed magically & quickly, each in turn.


We all went to bed dreaming of next Friday night at midnight on old Hoxie Bridge. Greta curled up waiting for the morning light.

Monday, February 5, 2024

Death by Chocolate

Salado library - this past weekend - they have an event known as "Death by Chocolate."  Even now, some are starting to call it Joy of Chocolate.  The word "Death" is probably a bit too strong for some.

Here's the deal.  It is a competition.  You sign up and make a chocolate something.  You bring it to the library in such a way that it  can be shared by all - and I mean all.

Daughter Laura and son-in-law Tom came to visit.  Today, Monday, is her birthday.  We celebrated a bit early since they don't live in Salado.  Visitors sometimes like to go into town to the happenings.  I was pressured a bit, but agreed to go to the chocolate death adventure.  It was nothing like I had imagined.

Contestants brought samples, yes.  I'd guess they brought enough for a hundred or more.  Each in a little cup - or plate.  There were full-sized chocolate cakes with plates and a knife.  You cut off how much you wanted to eat.  Crazy.  If you had wanted cake, you could have eaten an entire cake and NOBODY would have said a word.  Large and Small cupcakes .... Inch squares of brownies or other delights.  There were row after row of chocolate.

Walked in.  Signed a register. Were given a green and a red piece of paper.  Green was for YOU to vote on the Youth chocolate treats;  Red was for the Adult division.   You could have fed the Russian army with the chocolate available (not that anyone would at this stage).  I'd bet there were 15 to 20 or more entries in the youth division.  Adult section was even bigger.   Chocolate treat with Mexican hot chocolate.  Cupcakes adorned with bacon - everything is better with bacon y'know.

My wife, the chocolate Queen eater, was in Heaven.  Usually, I never capitalize the word "heaven" unless it is in the religion connotation.  But, in this case, HEAVEN is the word.  She went from one to another for a few minutes, and, then, made the comment, "I need a Coke."  They had little cups of cool water to hand out.  That worked for a while.  

There is no ending to this.  My wife was very happy.  And, it was FREE.  It cost nuthin'.  They had a cookbook thing titled "Death by Chocolate" that was printed a few years back.  It was not on the front burner = or pushed by the people.  If you happened to see it, you might pick it up and ask about it.  Yes, I bought one.  It has a few recipes and photos from the past.  Probably not worth what I paid.  But, how else do you show you support what they are doing?

It was nice.  Old and Young.  Gorging on chocolate treats.

Here is the bottom line - does your library lack participants?  Organize one of these.  The best thing is you will get to stuff your face with chocolate made by someone else.  The library might drum up a bit more business.  Fun.

mtz

Friday, February 2, 2024

catchy title

This is going to be one of those potpourri editions.  Can't figure out a catchy title, yet.  I looked up potpourri on my phone to make sure I spelled it correctly.  1st of all, I think I've always made it 2 words long:  pot pourri   - but I'm wrong.  spell check says so.  Tongue in cheek, I've often written "Pot Pouring" instead.  Nobody ever giggled.  While looking it up, my phone took me to "Poo-Pourri."  Adv. says, "A must have odor spray - stinky people..."  You can look them up on Amazon if interested.  (They also have a pet-pourri.)

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New subject, New color:  From today's bridge article by Frank Stewart in the Temple paper --he tells of a sign in a dentist office:  "We try to see our patients in discomfort quickly."  In my opinion that pretty much says it all other than to mention how expensive dentist have become.  That should be a separate blog.

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The call of spring - when a young man's fancy turns to .... Winter is winding down with Groundhog Day today. The ole groundhog has his day.  I find his predictions to be somewhat accurate.  After all, why would you trust a meteorologist opinion over that of a fluffy, cute little animal who can wiggle his nose?  Once knew a weather man who wiggled his nose.  I think it was alcohol related.  On the news tonight, they showed us an alligator who predicted spring and a group of penguins in a zoo who do the same.

Here's what I've noticed living in this nice subdivision.  At the beginning of spring, usually right after colleges have graduated theirs, young men & sometimes women begin their spring ritual - no, not the romantic call to marriage.  Certain companies begin the hiring epidemic of inexperienced young folks to travel door-to-door,  my door.  They hire these poor saps to cold-call neighborhoods.  Sometimes the kids wear a matching shirt adorned with a cute logo - sometimes they travel in pairs - a car or van is parked down the block - no business cards with company info - or brochures.  Just a poor child trying to make contact.

Solar panels for the roof ... check your roof for hail damage ... rain gutter covers ... yard maintenance, especially weed control ... come into your house and spray for bugs .... these are the most common.  Can the kid discuss it with you - like pricing or colors or bug poisons?  Of course not.  They don't sell the product.  Their job is to schedule a meeting with the boss who will explain the details.  I love asking for business cards.  I'm not sure, but I believe the young-ins have applied for a job and will do anything to find a job on the ground floor.  Someday, I will own the company!!!

SOOOOO, Maybe, Yes  - The doorbell rings.  Our dogs come unglued, I begin to yell at them (a nonsense task)  and the bell ringer backs up and stands about 15 feet from our front door.  We have a sign out front - a banner - which essentially says:  Don't knock on the door, the dogs will bark, I will yell, things will get ugly.   Bought it on Amazon.

That's pretty much it.  I chat to them.  I say I'm not interested.  I ask for a business card. They want to shake hands.  I go back inside to the barking dogs.

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Thursday comics, Feb 1st, CLOSE TO HOME by McFnerson.  He shows the man Inventor of Bounty Paper Towels  standing in a bar surrounded by women:            Caption -  "THE QUICKER-PICKER-UPPER"     I thought that was cute.

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This afternoon I looked out front.  Walking past was a chicken.  big and brown.  Chicken.  For all I know, it was a rooster.  I listed it on the HOA website and discovered that it had been listed by several others.  don't know what happened to the chicken.  No solution here.

that's enough.  tomorrow?

m