Sunday, July 31, 2011

5pm Sunday, thank goodness the weekend is finally here

Prodigal Son was planning on coming home this past Friday. He called to say the jeep wouldn't start.
-battery was dead. Some testing showed a parasitic drain of about 0.4 amps.
Saturday, Sonnage and I spent tearing apart the jeep tracing wires and dissecting the dash to get at the headlight switch, looking for the short to ground.
Sunday, we spent installing a new headlight switch and reassembling all the stuff we tore apart the day before. We hadn't quite reached the point of heat stroke, so we threw in a couple of oil changes to see if we could get there. The man child was right there every step of the way, some times leading the way. (proud I am of that boy)
Final amp meter testing shows no more parasitic drain on the battery. Headlights work again (always a good thing). And now, I am showered, in the air conditioning, marinating steaks and having a hoppy beverage.
I just love Weekends.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Rain?

Well the little hurricane that couldn't, Tropical Storm Don is skirting just south of Corpus Christi. The Hill country is in for some needed rain. Based on what the weather reports are saying, we need at least another 7 Dons to catch up on our rain deficit. A few days back the tracking models were showing the storm rolling right over the crik house.
Earlier in the week, Dad called to ask if I would go down to the crik house Thursday night and help him get the boat out of the water. He mentioned that my younger brother would be joining us. So, after work I headed over to Dad's house and we drove down together. My Brother met us at our favorite grill down there, Stingray's for vittles and libations. Stingray's is right next to the swing bridge on 457. I'm partial to their "Stingers", we call them Jalapeno poppers when we make them; A jalapeno pepper split and de-seeded with a shrimp and cheese inside, wrapped in bacon.
I haven't talked to my Bro at length in many many months. Mostly because the effer pays for a land line phone and answering machine to do nothing more than collect telemarketer recordings. And, he never checks his voicemail.
Back at the house, we had no hoppy beverages, so we broke into the rum. Dad toddled off to bed early. The effer and I sat up talking and telling stories until he checked the time to discover it was a quarter to 2 a.m.
I haven't laughed that hard in quite some time. He should be the one writing a blog.
We rolled out at sunup and the boat came out of the water without a hitch (well actually we did have a hitch..never mind, you know what I mean). We headed back to H town and I was at the office by 11 a.m to work the remainder of the day.
We passed through some squally rain on the way home, but we've not had a drop at the Hacienda de Campana all day.
I had a headache that ratcheted up like a slow turned screw all day long. Yes, it was the rum.
It only hurt when I laughed thinking about my time last night with my Bro.

[update]: No, not the hill country. I just checked storm tracker and it looks like the remnants of this will roll through Big Bend and perhaps over Monterrey, Mexico. Those folks do not need a lot of rain in a short period of time. Monterrey floods, and floods bad under those circumstances.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

two blog headlines

from IOTW

White House Spends 10 Min. Saying They Won’t Release A Plan They Might Not Have

no comment required.


and:

Gene Simmons getting married

Gene Simmons asked girlfriend of 28 years, Shannon Tweed, for her hand in marriage

p.s.: IOTW is prone to ad hominem attacks, which is verboten on Bells A Ringing. However, they've been blogging for a very long time and in my observation have decided to fight fire with fire.

pps: spell checker on blogspot sucks a huge root.

Sunday evening radio

What brought this to mind was a comment over at North's place by God,Gals,Guns,Grub; "Our Kel-Tec 3AT took a lot of rounds and finessing to work reliably". Jeff Sanford and Gary Montgomery were just commenting about Kel Tecs the other day.
Jeff Sanford and Gary Montgomery have a Sunday evening radio talk show on KSEV in Houston, "Guns over Texas" that is just an absolute hoot, and highly informative.
I ran across this broadcast by chance a few weeks back. Wait...what? A radio show about handguns, gun laws and concealed carry?
Belle and I listened to it on the way to Goodson's Cafe this past Sunday evening. It airs between 5 and 7pm.
If you are too far away to pick up the signal, you can listen on a webfeed, just click the "listen live" link.



Reminder........

Top Shot Season 3 premiers on The History Channel at 10pm EST, 9pm Central on Tuesday, August 9th.

Since the live blog for the finale of Season 2 seemed to go over so well, we will be doing another live blog during the premier that night.

I have to say that I'm so glad that Top Shot is on Tuesday nights and not Wednesday since Wed. is my dart night!


Monday, July 25, 2011

More on bugs

Looking for the giant wasp / yellow jacket I've seen several times I came across this.
Asian Hornet. Can't live in north america according to some. That pic looks about right, but on the smallish side. One of these Bastids cornered me in my own garage a while back.
While looking for that, I found this:
I feel that spider's pain.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

I'll Have What She's Having


Yes it was almost a "When Harry Met Sally" moment at the restaurant today.

I knew that I was going to have the chicken fried steak but decided on the small order when my eyes spied the dessert menu........ chocolate pie. I can never pass up chocolate pie.

As you can see when I took this photo I had already had the first taste of the velvety goodness.  After that first bite of the flaky crust and delectable chocolate, I knew that I had the real deal.  No instant pudding mix in that pie, it was all homemade and it had to be a sin to eat something so good on a Sunday, but who cares.

Each bite was a little taste of heaven, each bite extracted sounds of euphoria from my lips.  It was better than sex..   well almost.

Hubby watched me as I ate my pie and I think that he actually enjoyed it almost as much as I did.  God it was so good.  Every single bite was rich, soft and smooth and melted in my mouth.

I told my hubby, "If I get any louder after taking a bite of this, someone is going to say, "I'll have what she's having!"

It's been said that chocolate extracts the same emotions and feelings that one experiences when they have an orgasm.  Today, I could understand why.





A conversation at Goodson's Cafe

Yes, the chicken fried steak really is that big. Blackeyed peas and real mashed potatoes for sides.
I have to commend Belle's photography skills. I haven't looked that slender in a photo in I don't know when.
It must have been my 7th or 8th retreat into the air conditioning today from working in the yard, when Belle suggested we make the short jaunt over to Tomball to Goodson's for a chicken fried steak.


I've decided that a good chicken fried steak is the answer to fatigue and a sore back. (the large draft beers didn't hurt either). The Bill comes and Belle asks how much it is. I say not bad, and give her the down low on the bottom line.
Belle: "You're a cheap date" (She tells me this all the time. I still don't know what she means.)
me: "How do you figure? I'm paying the bill"
Belle: "Well...I drove here"
me: "I don't think you burned 38 dollars worth of gas..."
Belle: "Well with the gas prices these days...."
me: "And "we" did misread the map didn't we?...took the scenic tour of Tomball"
At which point, Belle thought I was quite funny. Whew, that was close. If you've not been married, that won't make any sense to you whatsoever.
If you should find yourself anywhere within 25 miles of Tomball, I highly recommend Goodson's Cafe. If you have eyes on the delectable pies for desert, I suggest the small chicken fried steak. Or, forego desert and go all in for the large. (my preference)







Bugs

A Fox news report from a few days ago spurred a bunch of random memories regarding bugs.
I have to wonder how you are not aware of this after the first 5 or 6 at least...
Black widows are very rare in my little part of the world. The only place I've seen one is down at the crik house. It was when we were still finishing up the build on the house. Towards the end of a long hot day of framing under the house, I was up on a ladder turning a lag bolt, and a black wasp landed on the column right next to me. I was tired and feeling surly, and being not terribly fond of wasps, I drew my 22 oz framing hammer and smacked it. The wasp fell to the ground and I noticed it dropped something. What it dropped was a small black spider. I poked at it with the handle of the hammer and as it rolled over I saw the tell tale red hour glass.
The "better sense" module in my brain spooled up to log the event; "hmmm good to know, black widows around here."
I don't reach around the blind side of the columns on the boat house anymore when climbing around like an aged monkey ( might be a widow on the other side).
I've had what I believe was a spider bite, just above my collar bone. Woke up with it one morning. The bite sight swole up like an egg, but it never did hurt. It mostly just itched. So it apparently wasn't of the poisonous variety. A little WD40, er neosporum, fixed it right up.
I run across what looks like a gigantic yellow jacket every now and then. Came across one this morning while cutting 8 inches of St Augustine grass growth. These things are a good 2 inches long, and particularly bad fliers in my opinion. I move one direction to get out of the buzzer's way, and it flies that same way. I move the other way, and so does it. So I resort to a hasty retreat. I'm not allergic to bee or wasp stings, but I'm not fond of them either. I might have to google a bit on these huge wasps to find out what they are. Perhaps someone can educate me on these big bugs.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Harry Potter - The End of an Era

I found myself completely enjoying the final Harry Potter movie yesterday afternoon.

I thought that they did a very good job keeping close to the books, though they left out some really good parts and the fight between Molly Weasley and Bellatrix LeStrange was a little underwhelming.

I found that I was crying off an on about half way through the movie. Part of it was the story line, having read the books, I knew what was coming, the other half was the realization that the series is now finished.

Alan Rickman (Professor Snape) was brilliant and of course so were all the other actors as well.

I saw the movie in 3D and all I can say about that is WOW! I think that my hubby is going to actually go and see this movie. After I came home and told him about it and he saw how excited I was over the brilliance and effects of seeing it in 3D, he said that he might have to go and see it. I hope so, because I would love to go and see it again.

I can only hope that JK Rowling will write a prequel series, perhaps about Voldemort's first rise to power............. I can only hope, but it just won't be the same.

As it is now, if you are a Harry Potter fan, this movie is a must see in 3D.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Movies

The lovely Belle has a big day planned after work tomorrow. First, the last of the Harry Potter movies. (She's read all the books, multiple times and seen all the movies). And, second, off to commune with drunks with pointy things. I never really could get into the whole Harry Potter series. I like the first movie ok, but after that it just did not click with me. So after dutifully attending several of the Harry Potter movies with Belle, I finally found the courage to tell her, "I think I'll pass on the next one".
The prodigal son and I were sitting on the couch watching TV a week or so ago when a movie trailer came on. He reacted immediately with "Really?" ( and not the snarky connotation of Really I'm prone to use)
He went on to explain that there was an online "web comic" he had followed for quite some time, which he believed that the movie might be based upon.
With a big smile on his face, he went on to relate some of the more ridiculously epic episodes of the comic book series.
This is a movie more to my personal, and I admit, my inner juvenile, tastes. First, there are cowboys. And, guns. And, explosions. That right there is enough to get my interest, but they also have Spaceships and ALIENS!
Turns out Son'age was right about the web comic, but the original goes farther back than that.. The movie is based on the original comic book and the web comic.
Based on what I've seen from the trailer, the first part of the movie starts out like a pretty good tough guy cowboy movie. From there, for me, it only gets better.
I might have to actually spring the increasingly worthless greenbacks to go and see this one at the movie theater.



If you're going to bring the snark......

At least know what the hell you're talking about.....

There's a good opinion piece on this here.

Apparently, Contessa Brewer of MSNBC doesn't know her ass from a hole in the ground.  Someone needs to teach her that you should always know your 'enemy' when entering into a debate with them.

Mo Brooks has three degrees which are political science, economics and law.





What a boob that woman is.  Go to the link I provided, it's a good opinion piece on this.


Top Shot Season 3 - Woohoo!

Thanks to the wonderfully handsome hubby I finally know that the third season of Top Shot premiers Tuesday, August 9th!

I can't wait!




Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

It all started with

A Daisy BB gun. A lever action beauty with a magazine that held 50 BBs and a shoulder strap.
Reloading the magazine was a workout for the fingers and thumb just to get the damn thing out of the gun and back in. The report from the muzzle upon firing sounded like someone was spitting a whisker hair out of their mouth and the projectile velocity was so slow you could actually observe the trajectory of the BB as it flew to its target, but I thought I was big shit with that little gun.
But, I'd seen the pump pellet guns at the local sporting goods store. I lobbied Dad to get me one for what seemed like forever. The day finally came, and of course, my younger brother, by three years, got to get one as well. (There is no justice in this world).
We're at Oshman's Sporting Goods and I'm slobbering over the pellet guns. The Benjamin .22 cal, or the Sheridan 5mm? I happened to see the loads for both guns. The Benjamin pellets were bigger, but thin walled and mostly hollow. The Sheridan rounds were a solid chunk of lead with a small cup in the back end.
That pretty much sold me.
My brother chose the Benjamin. I took the Sheridan. A box of Sheridan pellets, 500 rounds, would fit in your jeans back pocket. Plastic box with a small dispenser opening to let one or two pellets out at a time.
The Sheridan 5mm was a bolt action, single shot, air pump pellet gun. The instruction manual said the maximum number of pumps was 10. I don't think I ever fired it with less than 9 pumps.
I learned how to shoot iron sites with that gun. I don't use the term "gun" loosely.
I'd hunted the creek bed next to the house every free moment for quite some time. The report from that Sheridan was louder than a .22.
One day I got curious and took the time period equivalent of the internet (phone book) out to the backyard.
I leaned it up against a pine tree, moved back about 20 feet and pumped the gun the max 10 times.
The entry hole didn't look that impressive. I picked up the book and looked at the backside to see if it had exited. Nope. Then I started flipping pages. I found the pellet about half way through the 4 inch thick phone book. My adolescent brain went, "Hmmmm...Yep". I walked away with sense of satisfaction and dropped the phone book into the outside trash can so Mom wouldn't find it.
I still have that Sheridan 5mm pellet gun. The seals are all shot, but I don't think I'll ever throw it away. I guess my children will have to do that after I pass.

When I think of Soviet Science, this comes to mind

Borepatch posted about Soviet Science. And yes, those two words do bring Lysenko to mind.
But when I saw " Soviet Science" the acronym "TRIZ" popped into my head first.
I ran across this problem solving "system" as a young Architect. I was always on the hunt for a better approach. Triz turned out to be a rote process required by an intellectually and spiritually downtrodden Soviet populace in order to noodle their way through the most basic of approaches to problem solving. Pogroms and Socialism will do that to ya. I'm not going to write about it at length. Any American that owns no more tools than a pair of pliers and a screwdriver has better problem solving skills than the TRIZ process provides. In my not so humble opinion, it was so much mental masturbation by a not particularly creative individual.
One of the best problem solving techniques I came across came from Leonardo Da Vinci. He used a process he referred to as "Stream writing" if memory serves. When he had a problem he was trying to solve and he could not seem to get to the answer, he would write everything that came to mind. Leonardo would write every thought that popped into his head in one long continuous sentence without stopping, or thinking about what arrived on the paper.
I've tried this, on more than one occasion. It works unbelievably well. After the first time I tried it, I realized that what it did was clear all the competing thoughts in my mind, which allowed the Aha! moment to rise to the surface. This simple process starts with the problem at hand, then on to the solutions you've come up with. And, without stopping, the problems you see with your solutions. The random thoughts regarding the fact that you need to stop at the store on the way home from work and pick up milk and bread go into the mix as well and onto the paper. And, that is the whole purpose and magic of the process. It clears your mind while keeping it focused on the problem at hand.
What I thought would happen the first time I did this was that I would write jibberish for a while that would turn into an elegant description of the solution. It did not turn out that way. The mind works very very quickly when cleared of static. As I was writing the last of my own objections to my solutions, I stopped and audibly said, "That's It!". The solution appeared in my mind in one solid block of images and words.
Yes, I know the Russians put Sputnik into space first and blah, blah, blah. It is legal to walk around the city streets in Russia with a Big Gulp cup full of straight vodka as well. There's a reason for that. Think about it.
Stream Write on it a bit.


What's your Favorite Object?

This is the question my five year old granddaughter posed to me this evening.
I was...stumped.
Belle piped up from the couch.."I think pawpaw's favorite object is a beer can"
Really? Moi?

[edit] Ok, I admit it.... beer is my favorite alcohol delivery medium.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Yeesh

I think I've finally wound down enough to write a post. I worked harder this weekend than I did all last week at the office. Belle's and my "weekend" didn't start until about 4pm this afternoon when we took the "childrens" to Stingray's on the intercoastal canal for an early dinner. Finally, someone was bringing me drafts, appetizers and food.
My second oldest Daughter, at the age of 21 has developed an interest in fishing. She has a fairly serious boyfriend from the land locked locale of San Antonio that joined us along with the youngest (Bootsie) and the Prodigal Son. Belle and I met the new boyfriend, Rob, a while back for a short period.
First impressions are important. To summarize, I got a good vibe from the young man. ("young man", god that phrase makes me feel old)
When Boo asked if it would be ok if she brought Rob, I thought that would be a good opportunity to get to know him better.
Not so long ago, my teenagers were like every other slacker teenager on the face of the planet. They could kill you at 1000 meters on x-box live when they saw pixelated movement, but spending a day in the heat watching the end of a fishing rod was not their idea of "fun".
They all grew up spending many many weekends on Caney Creek, and they seemed to like it a lot, but they just never had the patience to fish.
Something has changed.
We don't see much of the kids these days. To have this many of them in one place at the same time made me feel like I had guests coming to the creek house.
Saturday morning, we all get up at Dark-thirty. To my surprise, all the late teen and twenty-somethings actually rolled out of the sack.
I'm in the kitchen cooking breakfast. Somewhere between scarfing breakfast and hauling gear down to the boat, Rob tells me he hasn't fished in 10 years. I was not alarmed. Compared to my brood, he's got a leg up.
And so, we head out to the deep channels at the eastest end of East Matagorda Bay. After the anchor is set, we were fishing. Well everyone but me. Rob managed to hook the bottom and yanked his tackle off the end of his line. After that, it got to be a bit of a blur for me. Someone else "lost" their tackle, and then someone else. I tied more seven knots and re-rigged more fishing poles in the first hour than I've done in ten years. Belle commented later that it was like having a bunch of 5 year olds on the boat.
Immediately, after that flurry of lost tackle, the lessons on how to get your hook "unstuck" from the bottom commenced. Shortly thereafter, the seven knot tying lessons commenced.
Somewhere in there, I managed to wet a line. I have a nice fat flounder sitting in the freezer.
Boo's boyfriend, Rob, turned out to be a very quick study. He had a rough start, but he had a real knack for setting the hook. He caught more fish than any of us this weekend. And, he worked his ass off at it as well.
He caught many beautiful baby trout. He got one speck that was just a bit shy of the legal keeper length, so that one was released so I can catch it later.
I hold the weekend record for the smallest. Maybe as long as my index finger, a foul hooked hard head catfish. And to make things worse, the little m'effer finned me in my thumb and index finger and drew blood. Believe me, I know how to hold a cat fish. But trying to hold a slimy and miniature version with two fingers and a thumb is challenging.
I think everyone had a great time this weekend, but I feel like I've been a sole proprietor fishing lodge for a bit over 48 hours.
HossBoss and YeOldFurt had their grandsons out at their place a short while back riding horses and ripping off 22 rounds like they were 12 gage sabat loads. I feel their sweet pain.


Saturday, July 16, 2011

Good Day One Fish

We are at the crik again, this time with kids in tow.

Kids are really adults and fishing with them was challenging considering that they are basically rookies because when they were little they were busy wanting to do other things than fish.  Anyhow, so we spent an ample amount of time rigging and re-rigging lines and taking fish off hooks.

KX59 caught one nice flounder that we could keep, the rest were too small.

We couldn't get out into the gulf this morning, the weather wasn't right and it was a bit too choppy to fish.  Tomorrow morning, we're going to try it again.  Hopefully we can make it through the cut into the gulf because that's where the trout are running.

I guess I'm not so bad after all

Whew!  I was worried there for a minute.

Borepatch had this thing on his site and so I figured I'd go and check it out.

Only 36% Evil....   I'm almost a little disappointed.


This site is certified 36% EVIL by the Gematriculator

Friday, July 15, 2011

The Light at the End of the Tunnel

Ah, it's so sweet.  As of yesterday, I had been working on reconciling the cash account and while it took me a few days to do it, I got it done.  It was a mess.  Now there are, of course other things to do to get caught up with what I'm doing, but it's getting there. what a relief.

Right now, as is my routine, I'm having coffee.  I get up at 4:30 each morning, have couple cups of coffee, watch the news, read the blogs or play facebook games and then I get ready and go to work.

I've been getting there a little before 7 every day and I have lunch at my desk and work through lunch I go home at 4.  My boss took pity on my yesterday since I had to drive way across town to pick up Bootsie (my youngest daughter of 18) and told me to get going an hour early.  Last Friday at 3:30, he sent me a text message saying, "Great first week, go home!"

I'm not used to this kind of behavior from an employer.  He will spoil me if he's not careful!  No biggie, I'm not one that will take advantage of him though.  I'll just be happy when he tells me to get going and not worry about when he doesn't.

I really like my boss and I know that I'm going to love working there.  It gets better and better each day.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Miss Me Yet?

If not, it's okay.  My brain is fried especially since I've had my nose buried in bank statements and general ledgers since day one..... oy!

I miss posting to the blog, but all I would post is nonsense which is, come to think of it, normally the case anyway.  Luckily my better half has a handle on things and has some good stories to tell as well!

Speaking of stories, he really needs to tell about the relocating of the raccoons!  Now there's a story!

The job is going great and soon, I will have a handle on things.  Considering that the bookkeeper didn't reconcile the bank accounts in 4 months, I have my work cut out for me...........  then there are other entries that I have to make but I suspect that in a couple of months, everything will be running like clockwork.

See y'all soon!

Snakes!

North has a great pic of a bull snake over at his place.
I don't freak when I run across snakes, but I give them no quarter either.
In my driving age teens, late 70's, we had a drought that was driving the armadillos and snakes up out of the creek bed in droves. My brother had a guinea pig in a cage in the garage. Guinea pig was not happy and made a lot guinea pig noises. I came home at dusk from an errand to the grocery store for mom, parked my '68 bug at the curb and commenced up the driveway with two bags of groceries in my arms. (for the 30 something and younger, those were great big brown paper sacks, they are in the museum next to the vinyl LPs) As I was approaching the halfway mark I caught a wiggley squiggle in my peripheral vision. Having spent years stalking the creek bed with my Sheridan 5mm pump pellet gun, I immediately stopped and lowered the grocery sacks and peeked over the top. Mr. (or Ms., not sure) Copperhead wiggled over to the nearest cover it could find, the right rear tire of the Elder Kx59's Blazer and coiled up.
I had caught the snake on its approach to the open garage door and the squeeking guinea pig.
I learned my snake killing skills from my mother. If you were a snake and she had a sharp shooter shovel, or a lawnmower, you were shit out of luck. Although, drawing the short straw to go out and see if the water moccasin in the lawn mower bag was "dead" sucked pretty bad.
Taking stock of my available weapons, I had Dad's car, Mom's car, the big Sista's car, two grocery sacks, my foot and not much else.
So I backed up and set the grocery sacks on the hood of the car. As copperheads are prone to do, it stayed right there, thinking that it was hidden next to the black tire. Instinct fails sometimes.
Looking around, and trying to keep my eye on the snake, the only thing I could find that gave me a killing advantage at distance was a softball. For once, all those years pitching in little league baseball would come in handy.
The first split finger fastball missed. I'm pretty sure the word "shit" passed through the nub between my ears right then.
So off I go to chase down the softball. I found the softball and returned for my second pitch. Copperhead's instincts failed again, that would have been the prime opportunity to slither off into the neighbor's yard.
Second pitch was on the mark, strike one and you're out.
My personal space sphere for snakes is about my height plus two feet, about the same distance i'm willing to get to the roof edge of tall buildings, should I manage to face plant. If you are a snake at the edge of my personal sphere and moving away, you are good to go. Any other circumstances be warned, I pack a softball.

Horrendous Heat

"Horrendous Heat Spans from Texas to Virginia Today" so says Bill Deger. And I'd agree, although it's not unusual for us down here. The 100 plus degree temps did arrive a bit earlier than usual. Teke decided that 107 degrees was perfect weather for repairing his sprinkler system and making the obligatory 5 trips to the hardware store.
I actually saw rain at work today. And yesterday, Belle saw a lone bee buzzing around the cucumber vine. Thinking ahead to next year, the plan is to plant a boatload of flowers around the veggie plants to attract what little of the buggers are still out there. Things are looking up.
It used to be that if something went right in your day, it made your whole day. Now, if anything goes wrong, it just pees on everyone's parade. I had a great depression mentality instilled in me in my knee-high years.

One other plus that I have no explanation for is that there are no, nada, as in zero, tropical depressions, low pressure cells, hurricanes, hissicanes, or rain in the Atlantic between Africa and Cypress today. If you'd like a technical explanation, I'll have to call the Elder Kx59, being that he was a meteorologist in the Air Force.
Wasn't this supposed to be another epic year for named storms where they had to pull out the "B" list of names? That global warming gravy train just keeps getting smaller, and smaller, and smaller.
I so wanted to post a screen shot, but Stormpulse is not liking my linux browser, so I'll have to punt and post a link.
I'm not counting my chickens just yet though. Late August is when the bowling ball seems to hit the oily maple.
P.S. Belle sends her love to all. She has been under the gun with the new job, but loving it. She'll be back before you know it. Meanwhile, you'll just have to put up with the B side of the blog.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Better late than never..I guess

Or as a subtitle "never bring your fists to a knife fight, or how about never bring a knife to a gunfight"
Police said officer C.E. Hightower and another off-duty officer were working an extra job directing traffic in the parking lot of the El Chaparral club about 2:15 a.m. when they saw a group of men get into a confrontation outside a nearby gas station.
Some lack of situational awareness?
The officers went to the station at 4401 W. 18th near the 610 West Loop and intervened. They pulled one of the men away, but he went to his vehicle, grabbed a knife and began stabbing another man he had been fighting.

Hightower saw the assault and ordered the man several times to drop the knife. The man ignored the commands and continued to stab the other man

Knife vs. gun
Hightower, fearing for the victim's safety and the safety of others nearby, fired several shots, hitting the knife-wielding man, HPD officials said. The man got up after he was shot, climbed into his vehicle and drove a short distance, plowing through several bushes and striking a few cars in the bar's parking lot before he stopped.
"fearing for the victim's safety and the safety of others nearby" Johnny on the spot that officer was.
Not only that, he had a high degree of confidence in his aim, considering the the proximity of the "perp" to the victim and "others nearby". And yet, the "perp" managed to get up, get into his car and drive a short distance before he passed out from blood loss (and apparently bled out).

Don't get me wrong. I support the police. They have really dicey job. But this situation was completely FUBAR on their part. They managed to let one of the combatants walk away from them, to his car, grab a knife, walk back and stab the other combatant to death. Then the officer finally shot him.
The sad state of affairs is that the police are crime janitors.
Keep your powder dry.




Windows 7....Yuk

I have my laptop set up for dual boot: Windows 7 or Linux Ubuntu 11.04.
When I first got this 'puter, I thought Windows 7 was not so bad, having worked for so many years on the XP platform. Tonight, I thought "perhaps I should boot it up in Winders 7 and update the virus protection and the OS". (Commence slow motion wading through chest deep water)
Linux boots up, literally, in seconds. Winders 7 clocks in at minutes, and you won't know it's actually finished until the program icon you clicked 4 minutes ago produces a program on your computer screen.
There are some excruciatingly slow time frames, of which we can do nothing about. (while I was typing that last sentence..this popped up)

There is the waiting for the cable guy (AC repair guy, Appliance Repair guy..insert repair guy of choice here) in the guaranteed 4 hour window. If it is 8am to 12pm, he will show up at 1:47. If it is 1pm to 4pm, he will show up at...er..tomorrow.
The only thing I find more annoying than Winders 7 boot up time is microwave time. Two minutes and 30 seconds to heat my left over spaghetti seems to turn real time into a matrix fight scene montage. In the time frame from pushing the start button to the "ding" I can: Make a quick trip to the restroom, Go back to my desk, Check my email, Respond to five emails, Check Borepatch's blog, Find my lost insurance card in my briefcase, text my daughter on my ancient cell phone, check Bluesun's blog, Read the comments on the Lovely Belles blog, change the oil in my car, and discover I have a real knack for Tantric Yoga. (ok, I made that last one up)
And, when I return to the microwave...I still have 23 seconds to wait.
Meanwhile, Your windows operating system will be available in a guaranteed 4 hour window next Wednesday.
Now that the updates are done, pardon me while I restart this laptop and boot up into Linux.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

"Safety Inspection"


Actually "Fee Collection" is more accurate.


The Beater Van passed the annual Texas safety inspection and emissions testing again.
That makes 22 in a row.
It's not that it is an incredibly well put together vehicle by any means. It has certainly had some help along the way. Last year it was pushing the limits on hydrocarbon emissions but squeeked by on the test. This year, the hydrocarbon emissions were way way down and the NOx emissions just squeeked by.
If it manages to last another two years, the emissions testing won't be required on it anymore. It's sitting at 158,000 miles and change. I got 186,000 miles out of my beloved old Jeep Cherokee (God rest her soul). And, said Jeep would probably still be running if I hadn't let my teenage daughters drive it.
I'm starting to think about a new vehicle. The last one I purchased for me, was back in February of 1997. It was the Jeep (who's dead carcass resides in the driveway as I type).
As for the beater van, I suspect I'll never sell it. It certainly wouldn't be worth anything as a trade-in.
The irony of late has been that Belle's Malibu, Boo's Cobalt, and the prodigal Son's Jeep all had mechanical problems within the last month. With the Son's Jeep we managed to shade tree mechanic our way to a solution. The ladies' sedans required professional help. Whilst all this was going on, the beater van ran like a Timex watch.
The Beater Van is not a vehicle I would have chosen for myself. In a way, it chose me.
As my Mother aged, she lost sight in her right eye and quit driving. My Dad called one day and asked If I wanted her Astro Van. I have no idea why I said yes, but I did.
Long story short, not too long after that my Mother passed away. The day of the funeral, neither my Jeep nor Belle's car would start. All six of us loaded up into Mom's Astro van, which just barely ran at the time, and made our way to the funeral home. Although I've not admitted it out loud to date, I think I have an emotional attachment to the Beater Van.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

No Bees

I haven't seen a honey bee once since winter. Usually they are thick on the Ligustrum shrubs out front when they bloom. Usually I'm bobbing and weaving as I pass the shrubs with the mower, dodging pissed off bees.
Even the red wasp population seems to be down (although a decline in the population of those aggressive effers does not bother me much). I was out back looking at the tomato plants noting many blooms and no fruit yet. Belle commented that we had no bees. Not good. A google search indicates the bee population is declining in a seriously bad way in the U.S. When I started this post, I was going to make a joke about having to get a Q-tip and fondling the blooms myself, but now that I think about it, that's not so funny. I think I am going to actually have to do that.

Only a Democrat would flame someone in public and turn around and ask for a donation.

Sistertoldjah has the down-low. As she notes "You can't make this stuff up!" Searching for a phrase that will describe my state of mind..Really? Seriously? WTF? Nope, just not doing this justice. You'll just have to go and read for yourself.

I found my way to her blog via one of my blog rolled brethren a while back. She is one smart and witty lady, now duly blogrolled here.

Awfully quiet

I've been awfully quiet this week between vacation and now the new job.

Everything is going well at the new job, and I'm happy to say that I think that I'm gong to like it.

I'll catch up at some point this weekend, right now, the bed is screaming my name so I think that I'm going to turn in for the night.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Two great global warming skeptic posts

They just..global warm my heart.
The first from the Mandarin.
The second from James Dellingpole.
Take that Hippies.
Both well worth the five minutes they will take to read.
The printing press changed the world, the interwebs have changed it again.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

July 4th


I hope everyone had a great 4th. We haven't been posting much. We were a bit busy over the long weekend.
A few pics:

That speck out there is the Lovely Belle working the shoreline:
Shallow Water:
Very Shallow Water! Steer left! That bird is knee deep!
Sunset on East Matagorda:
Sunrise on the 4th of July
Fish On!
These were legal keepers. We released close to 90. Our few hours of fishing turned into 9 hours on the water after we headed out through the cut into the gulf. I have the sunburn to prove it. We were fishing the first break at the line between the sandy and the clean water. We'd still be there, except we ran out of bait.

First day on the job...

It went great!  I have a lot to learn, which is typical but everyone is really nice and I found out today that I have something in common with several of my co-workers.......   we all like to fish!

Needless to say, I'm tired.  Vacation wore me out.  Fishing report to follow from KX59, I'm too tired to blog much tonight.


WHAT!...Is That Smell?

Exactly Where..have you been?



Saturday, July 2, 2011

I hate it when..........

I spend the better part of a day on a boat, then come home, clean up and try to take a nap only to find that I can't sleep.  Why can't I sleep you ask?  Because I still FEEL like I'm on the boat!

It was a great day.

Pork Roast and homemade peach ice cream

It's what's for dinner tonight.
We just got back from fishing the shallows at the eastest end of East Matagorda Bay.
Caught lot's of small black drum and redfish and one keeper flounder. I am well salt and sun cured and feeling a bit like jerky.
But, as usual, I digress.
There is a pre-seasoned pork roast in the frig. There was some dissension amongst the crew as to whether we would cook tonight or go to one of the several restaurants in the thriving metropolis of Sargent for dinner. My vote was to cook. I cooked the last two nights. I volunteered to cook again in order to lobby the vote in my preferred direction. Sometimes, drastic measures are required in a family full of type "A" personalities.
The real reason is that the Big Sista brought peaches from the tree in her back yard, and a high tech Cuisinart ice cream machine that has a ring that you freeze. My personal experience with homemade ice cream involves lot's of ice and rock salt. So I am told, with this high tech doomaflitch, none of that is required due to the magical frozen ring.
So, we shall see, and eat.

Happy Independence Day!
God Bless the Founding Fathers and the men that fought the Revolution, without which I would not be making this vacuous and gluttonous post.