Weird Weather

A couple of days ago, it was 54 degrees out.  The sun was shining, the birds were tweeting, and the squirrels were, um, squirreling.  A light wind blew and all was right with the world.  Now, today, the rain came.  It is cold, blustery, and not at all conducive for the sun, birds, or squirrels to do their thing.

According to the weather-guessers, it is supposed to snow for the next two days.  Now, these are probably not the same ones that told my sister in Boulder that the snow was only going to last for a short while and deposit just 2 inches, but they are of the same breed (if not the same genus) and they make their predictions based on Ouija Boards and fish guts (or whatever) wrapped around their fingers.

A company a few years back used to sell what they called a backyard weather indicator.  It was a simply flat board about 6 inches square that was suspended by a string on all four corners and hung on a tripod.  It was simple to use:

If the board was dry and warm, the sun was shining.

If the board was wet, then it was raining.

If the board was whipping around, then the wind was blowing.

If the board had two inches of snow on it, then it was snowing

You get the idea, I’m sure.  I wonder if that company is still around because they obviously had an inner track to thing of that nature.  They probably invented the Pet Rock also.

I just watched an old British black and white movie starring Aldo Ray and Peter O’Toole called “The day they Robbed the Bank of England”.  It’s a very good movie but only about 85 minutes long.  Now that I’ve seen it, I was strongly reminded of a much more modern movie released not long ago called “The Bank Job”.  Like the older movie, the thieves used an old sewer to tunnel under the bank vault so they could plunder it.  Not having the modern conveniences of things like radios, rapid transportation, and other things like that, the old thieves got caught simply by bad luck.  In the new movie, a ham radio operator picked up their handi-talkie chatter and called police.  The police, in turn, did some fancy sleuthing by sending cars all over London with their sirens hooting while the detectives listened for radio chatter.  Clever idea, for sure.  It didn’t work because a clumsy accomplice on a rooftop dropped his radio to the pavement below.

The end of the later movie got a bit murky as the thieves traded some smutty pictures by a female Royal for immunity and new passports.  They “underestimated” the value of their haul also and rode off into the sunset.  I’m pretty sure Aldo Ray didn’t get to do that.

Our cat is certifiably deranged.  That’s a veterinary term meaning “she’s crazy”.  Since the squirrels have virtually stopped frolicking in the yard, she has now taken up a watch station in the front window and “ekkkks” at the occasional bird that has the temerity to try and feed itself from the small try I have suspended right in front of the front porch.  This puts the birds at about eight feet away from her nose.  Yeah, I know.  It’s cruel, but lots of fun (for me, bwwwwahahahahah).  One of these days I’m going to have to film her.  She really gets into it.  She paces back and forth while they peck away and when they fly off (especially upwards over the roof of the porch) she zooms to the back sliding door and waits patiently for them to appear.  They never do, but she won’t listen to me.

Later, ya’ll.


Well, hello there!  I’ve been doing my best to keep from going outside for any reason at all.  This is hard to do since the wife has gone to Colorado for moral support and washing machine replacement.  Over the last week, the daily average has been somewhere between hell and a much warmer spot (Phoenix).  I have a Mini-Max thermometer and it told me on Friday that the highest temperature reached was 101 degrees (fahrenhot).  Since the actual thermometer is on the front porch, I aimed my camera out the front door and zoomed in on the reading.  Hah!  I didn’t have to go outside!

At night is has been a little more reasonable – only hitting the low 80’s.  I’d mow my jungle lawn, but I’m afraid that the lawn tractor will go up in a burst of flame (not to mention the plastic of the seat adhering to my seat).  Mowing at 0300 is probably not a good idea either.

Yesterday, a little lost cloud passed over my house and in a freakish set of circumstances let loose with a huge blast of thunder at exactly the same time my cat landed on the floor after jumping off the couch.  I jumped a foot, but suffice it to say that the cat jumped further – around 15 feet if I measured correctly.  When last seen, she was headed horizontally across the floor in hovercat mode about three inches off the floor.  She didn’t even respond to my calls of ‘crunchy!’ until the storm had passed.  Even then she repeatedly looked at me as if I’d done it on purpose.

Today it is only as hot as the approaches to hell: a mere 84.  It is partly cloudy (a condition the weather-guessers insist on calling ‘partly sunny’) and there is a very small breeze blowing once in a while.  I did get my lawn mowed however.  It was rapid and required that I actually leave the house so I made it fast and ducked back inside right away.  As I gaze out the window, I can see little ridges of grass where, in my haste, I didn’t quite get over far enough and left a trail.

Boredom has set in.  I’ve watched enough satellite TV to pay for my outrageous billing for the month and have reverted back to books.  I’ve started Tom Clancy’s latest book, which weighs in at approximately 5 pounds (weight, not monetary) and contains over 700 pages.  I’m halfway through it and enjoying it thoroughly.  A week ago, I ended up at Ollie’s (a local “we have everything” store) and bought three more backup books just in case this heat wave continues past December.

I sat at the table this morning eating my cereal and had a random thought: Why did all the cereal companies drop the use of waxed paper for liners?  Waxed paper kept a great seal and allowed you to have more than one box open at the same time without any of them going stale.  Now, they create these Kevlar liners that takes a bazooka to open and, in the process, scatters cereal all over the kitchen floor.  This is excepting, of course, Shredded Wheat.  These little bales of hay come three to a packet but, if you note on the specifications box, the figures are for TWO biscuits.  This means that you have to figure 1.5 times all the figures to actually arrive at what you ate/are eating.  On the other hand, you can re-pack one biscuit for the next time.  This means that when Shredded Wheat comes around in breakfast rotation (about a week later) the one biscuit you saved has gone stale.  Bummer.

Fixing my own meals doesn’t stop at breakfast.  I now have to do both lunch and supper (or dinner – depending on where you were brought up).  I wouldn’t mind so much, but I have to go out into the garage and open the freezer door to select an eatable.  Once that’s done, I fix it in one of two ways: 1) boil it in a pan, or, 2) nuke it with microwaves.  Done either way, the meal kind of tastes the same – bleh.

I haven’t included any animal pictures lately because even the squirrels are holed up in their air-conditioned condos awaiting cooler weather.  I imagine it’s pretty hard on them because they start out with a fur coat and get warmer.  Even the birds are panting when they land on the lawn.  Their prey (worms, one presumes) are dug in deep enough so that even the sharpest robin’s beak can’t reach them.  I know this is true because I saw a robin just the other day with a shovel over its shoulder.

Random thoughts are cool; one never knows where they will end up.


Addition to our little family

My granddaughter, Briana, now has a little 18-month old kitty to keep her company.  She has named her ‘Cami’ because, as you can see, she blends in rather well with the rug.

We think Cami will love living with us.  Our elder cat, Mystic, who is 21 years old, took things calmly but Cami did a little hissing and growling.  That was two days ago – they are now sleeping on our waterbed, although at opposite ends.  They seen to be getting along better now.


Friday Funnies

A tough old cowboy from Bear Lake valley in Idaho counseled his grandson that if he wanted to live a long life that the secret was to sprinkle a pinch of gunpowder on his oatmeal every morning.

The grandson did so religiously to the age of 103 when he finally passed away.

The left behind 14 children, 30 grandchildren, 45 great-grandchildren, 25 great-great grandchildren and a 14-foot hole where the crematorium used to be.

Story from the Jacksonville, FL, Police Dept.

A man goes to a party and has too much to drink. His friends plead with him to let them take him home. He says no, as he only lives a mile away.

About five blocks from party, the police pull him over for weaving and ask him to get out of the car and walk the line. Just as he starts, the police radio blares out a notice of a robbery taking place in a house just a block away. The police tell the man to stay put, they will be right back and they hop a fence and run down the street to the robbery.

The guy waits and waits and finally decides to drive home. When he gets there, he tells his wife he is going to bed, and to tell anyone who might come looking for him that he has the flu and has been in bed all day.

A few hours later the police knock on the door. They ask if Mr. Joe is there and his wife says yes. They ask to see him and she replies that he is in bed with the flu and has been so all day.

Since the police have his driver’s license, they ask to see his car and she asks why. They insist on seeing his car, so she takes them to the garage. She opens the door. There sitting in the garage is the police car, with all its lights still flashing.

My wife insisted on inserting this gem:

Made breakfast for the cranky youngsters


and fed the baby a bottle


She dribbled milk all over herself and my new blouse


I loaded up the kids in the carseat and took them to daycare & school


I was late for work, and traffic was a nightmare


My husband called my cell phone to tell me he got laid off from his construction job


I got to the office (I’m a Tech Analyst)


My supervisor chewed me out


for misplacing the mouse


I went out for lunch and got caught in the rain


I left work early to pick up my new eye glasses (wrong size)


I then picked up the kids from school & daycare


Fed them all a quick meal


Drove the boys to karate lessons


And, then the girls to tap & ballet


When we got back home, all they wanted to do was watch TV



and, sing karaoke instead of doing their homework


After much chaos, they took their baths & got ready for bed


And after much hounding, they brushed their teeth


Then I read them their nightly bedtime stories


They finally went to sleep


So, I tried doing some aerobics in the living room


Now, I think I’m getting a migraine


and, a runny nose


I’m pretty certain it’s the flu


After a long and grueling day, I crawled into bed and was just drifting off when


I realized I had forgotten something



And next week, I’m off to the spa and pool for some much-needed rest and relaxation with my girlfriend


Tough Love vs. Spanking – Good Argument

Most people think it improper to spank children, so I have tried other methods to control my kids when they have one of ‘those moments.’

One that I found effective is for me to just take the child for a car ride and talk.

Some say it’s the vibration from the car, others say it’s the time away from any distractions such as TV, Video Games, Computer, IPod, etc.

Either way, my kids usually calm down and stop misbehaving after our car ride together. Eye to eye contact helps a lot too.

I’ve included a photo below of one of my sessions with my son, in case you would like to use the technique.


Your Friend

pic 31

This works with grandchildren, nieces, and nephews as well.

Bye now.

Now there is only one

Poor Mystic.  He really misses Tobie.  Every day you can hear him yowing around the house looking for his buddy.  Mystic is my only remaining cat now.  He’s over 21 years old and is pretty deaf.  He uses a loud “Yow!” as a sort of echo-locator I think.  If it weren’t for the fact that this noise shoots right through my hearing aids and into my brain I could tolerate it. The only way to quiet him down is for us to pick him up and sit a while with him in our laps.  He’ll quiet down and go to sleep.

If you ignore him he’ll begin chanting his Yow every three or four seconds.  If you walk up to him from behind and touch his tail he’ll jump like a startled frog, whirl around, and glare at you for surprising him.  Even when I’m wearing my TV headphones I can hear him he’s that loud.

He’s not showing any signs of old age though.  Maybe a touch of arthritis, but only if you watch closely as he ambles across the floor.  Heck, I walk that way too and I only have two legs.

We’re going to have to put some small intermediate steps up to his favorite snoozing chair though as he can’t quite jump all the way up like he used to.  Now, it’s jump 1 and jump 2 to get up there; or, an assist from one of us.


Mystic, 2009