Saturday, December 17, 2011

New munchkin

Well a new little munchkin popped into the world yesterday at 1:28pm.  Weighed in at 6lb. 12oz. and 18 1/2 inches.  We called him Number Three since they haven't decided on a name for the little dickens and he has 2 older brothers.  This one never made the transition to head down position or even head up or breech like his brother, he settled in at the transverse position and never moved off it, that's crossways, head on one side, butt on tother.  This gives me 6 grandkids in the last 4 years, 5 boys and one girl.  I wonder if they've figured out what causes that?  Believe me it ain't in the water!  One of the few products that don't come with a manual!  Oh well, Mama seemed to know. 


Friday, December 16, 2011

Bad work situations

Reading Ben's Blog I decided that it had triggered a memory of the worst job I ever had...and it was the same place Ben had worked in the past.  The place was called Burris Mills.  It was a flour mill.  I knew I was in trouble when I landed in the break room that first day and everyone was sitting around picking their noses!  The bad part was by the end of the day, so was I.  My eye started to hurt and when I picked at it, out of the corner of my eye came a long strand of white junk that actually hurt as it came out.  Eye felt a lot better after.  Then I remembered building kites in my youth out of paper bags/sacks and using water and flour as a glue to hold them together.  Hey, we entertained ourselves cheaply back then.  Anyway after a while I discovered that the dust in these places can flash into a fire real easily and lots of mills had them in the past.  The next thing of note were the regularly scheduled shutdowns for fumigation!  We taped all the opennings closed with plastic and went about spraying some sort of poison into and on everything.  Yep, flour too.  It was some sort of Bromide concoction.  Gas masks were issued and blood tests required afterwards.  Was interesting.  But getting back to the work week.  We worked a month on days, a month of swing shift and a month on graves.  Just about the time you acclimatized to one you were off to another.  Really stinks!  But I quit to go back to school and get my degree so I guess it all worked out in the end.  That poison must not have affected the gonads, had 4 darling daughters out of the deal.  Well, to be honest Mama had 4 darling daughters, I just hung around the outside.


Thursday, December 8, 2011

And for the season, perhaps a giggle or a smile

                                           How The Angel Got To Be
                                       On Top Of That Christmas Tree

This here story answers that age old question, “How did that angel git on top of the Christmas tree?”

Santa was settin’ there in front of the fireplace, laid out in the Lazy Boy with his feet up. Suddenly he woke up and glanced at his watch. It was ‘leven thirty! It was Christmas Eve and he had to be outta there by twelve or he wouldn’t git all the toys delivered in time!

He jumped up and run to the back room. He tore through the closet lookin’ fer his red suit. He shook the moth balls outta the sleeve and slipped into the britches. He heard a great big Rip! He backed up to the mirror and sure enuf, he’d tore the seat right outta them britches. He glanced at his watch and it was 25 ‘til twelve. So he skinnied off them britches and run ‘em down to the little tailor elves and said, “Boys, sew this back up!” They did.

Santa come in and throwed on his coat ‘n’ hunted around in the closet fer his boots. He couldn’t find ‘em, so he hollered, “Hey Maw, where’s my boots at?”

She hollered back, “They’re out on the back porch where you left ‘em when ya’ come in last Christmas!”

Sure enuf, he run out on the back porch they’d built on the trailer house and there they were. He had pulled ‘em off wet last year and they’d dried out and the toes had curled up some, but he stuffed his feet down in ‘em and dadgum it the heel didn’t fall off the left boot! Santa glanced at his watch. It was 20 ‘til twelve! He ripped them boots off and took ‘em down to the little cobbler elves and said, “Boys, hammer this back on!” And they did.

Santa slipped on his boots and run into the house, grabbed his coat and took out across the yard to hook up the sleigh. The yard light had burned out and somebody had left the snow plow parked in the driveway. He hit that sucker at a dead run ‘n’ went head over heels landing with a big war whoop which spooked the reindeer ‘n’ they went over the top rail ‘n’ out in the bean field! Santa glanced at his watch. It was a quarter ‘til twelve!

The little cowboy elves saddled up and brought the reindeer into the barn, put ‘em in the hitch and hooked ‘em up to the sleigh. Santa jumped up into the buckboard seat, cracked the whip ‘n’ the reindeer took off, but Santa just sat there! The tugs had broke on the harness! Santa glanced at his watch. It was 10 ‘til twelve.

Santa said “Boys, gather up them reindeer and I’ll fix the harness.” Then he hooked the team back up, leaped in the sleigh and slid on down in front of the house. Just as they pulled up to the house one of the runners fell off the sled! Santa glanced at his watch! It was 5 ‘til twelve!

They welded the runner back on and Santa run in the house. He grabbed that big bag of toys, slung it up over his shoulder and … Yep, you guessed it. The bottom tore outta that bag and toys went everywhere!

Santa was down on his hands and knees scramblin’ around stuffin’ them toys in a Safeway sack, when a little angel come flyin’ in the door with a Christmas tree over his shoulder and said “Hey Santa, where do you want me to put this?"


Friday, December 2, 2011

Good Story Came to Mind

Well reading Ben's blog about car wrecks and surviving them reminded me of a story a guy I used to work with at Lockheed told of an accident he had.  He drove a open top Jeep and was exiting off I35 at Hattie Street I believe.  Back several years ago the off ramp ran up to a stop sign and bridge overpass with a steep embankment back down to I35.  Well just as he pulled to a stop at the top a car coming from his right jumped the curb and barreled right towards him.  He braced himself and this thing creamed him broadside then pushed him across the road and into the curb rolling the jeep down the embankment.  He said he must have rolled 5 or 6 times before coming to a halt upside back down on the shoulder of I35.  He said this whole trip of recent occurence had rattled him pretty good so he was having a little trouble unscrambling his brain to decide what to do next.  Thats when his savior arrived in a big black Cadillac and the lady got out and walked up to the jeep reached in and unbuckled his seat belt then when gravity brought him to a halt once again this lady dragged him out of the vehicle and to a safe distance...then rolled him over and stole his wallet.  Said he never did see her face. Just goes to show ya' when your down on your luck theres always someone who'll offer to kick ya'


Monday, October 24, 2011

Out of the mouths of babes

My niece, sister's kid, had a kinda nice story to tell on her little one, Cole, he's five.  Seems as they was getting ready for bed and had done their prayers he said, "Mama, I think I want to go to Heaven and see God."  She was floored for a minute and when she had once again gathered composure she replied, "Yes sweetheart, we all want to go to Heaven and see God some day."  He paused then came back with, "how about Thursday?"  As Tennessee Ernie used to say, "Bless their little pea picking hearts."

Every once in a while they can come up with some gems!  Hope I'm around long enough to hear some more, which reminds me of a story.

Two old boys grew up playing softball together.  They played through school, they played in college, they got married and played co-ed softball.  They played softball right up until the senior league, then one feel ill and the other went to visit him in the hospital.  He asked, "Well you gonna pull through this?" and the other answered "don't know, guess time will tell."  "Well if you don't, you gotta promise me you'll come back and tell me if there's any good softball games in Heaven."  "Okay, I promise."  Sure enough the gentleman didn't make it and a couple of nights later a filmy apparition settled down on the foot of the other guy's bed.  "Joe, is that you?"  "Well of course it is, I promised I'd come back."
"So tell me, are there any good softball games in Heaven?"  "Well, I've got some good news and some bad news."  What's the good news?"  "There's great softball games in Heaven.  We play seven days a week with a double header on Saturday and a night game on Sunday.  All the umps wear glasses and call a great game and the crowds really cheer us on."  "Wow, that's great, what's the bad news?"  "You're pitchin' Thursday."


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Lawn mowing?

Well...bought that new lawnmower a while ago (first of spring).  Mowed twice...everything died, haven't mowed since.  We got some rain and I'll be danged if the yard greened right up!  Hard to believe.  So I broke out the mower and mowed...for the third time this year.  Wow!  Then I weed eated and edged and didn't take that long.  Then I notice some big old tree growing in my bushes so I figured I'd do some trimming while I was at it.  Did too.  But...half way through that 4 inch across tree my battery died.  Recharged I charged into it again.  Dang that tree was one dense sucker and wet too.  I was huffing and puffing so I decided to take a little break.  Been a hour now and I ain't made it back out there. 

Can you say "Procrastination!"  But I'll be danged if its gonna win!  Just ain't figured out just when I'll claim victory.  Did discover them danged bushes claimed first blood.  Back of my hand looked like raw hamburger.  The older you get the easier you bleed and then don't know how it happened.  Who was it that said "old age ain't for sissies"?


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Dang, you mean I was right? oldest daughter passed a compliment on to me the other night at dinner.  She said her bosses attorney had been having a conversation with some high level muckatee muck in the finance world and had some advice that had proved I wasn't a danged nut after all.  She said the concensus was that I was right and this fellow agreed...the best investments in this trying time was...(wait for it)... guns and gold!  Holy cow, been doing that for a while and didn't know I was a financial genius.

Yep, got started when I found a place that sold U.S. government issued military firearms and I bought the gun (or one like it) that my Dad carried in WW2, an M1 Garand.  The one Patton called the finest battle implement ever made.  This one was made by the Springfield Armory.  Loved it so much I decided on a second one by a different manufacturer.  This next one was made by the Harrington and Richardson (H and R) people.  Both shoot extremely well for being 60 some odd years old.  Then these same people started offering the M1 carbine for sale and I got hooked.  Final talley was 6 from different manufacturers.  First was from Inland, a division of General Motors.  Next was made by Underwood, Elliot, Fisher, the typewriter company.  Then came one from Winchester (had a bow and arrow carved into it).  Next one from a place called Quality Hardware out of Chicago.  Then the most rare (fewest made) one made by Rockola, (yep, the jukebox company).  And lastly to honor my Dad who worked for the Post Office for 30 years I got one built by the National Postal Meter company.  They all still shoot well and I keep 'em cleaned and polished military style.  And that's just a few of my investments.  But I'm proud of every one.  We'll talk about the gold later!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Grey matter is important!

I have been suffering from a rare malady that I knew nothing about until the first time it reared its ugly head and slapped me down a peg or two.  The technical name is BPPV short for Benign Proxysmal Positional Vertigo.  It makes the room spin around.  Well, I've got it again.  Its caused (supposedly) by a piece of calcium breaking loose in the inner ear and floating around causing all kinds of hell.  There is no remedy for the stuff but some head twisting exercize to try and lodge the calcium back into place somewhere.  I will say that motorcycle riding and the world spinning around are not a good combination.  But I am confident in knowing that it will subside and leave me waiting for the next time it occurs.  Thank goodness there was about a year since the last time.  It ain't funny, but I'll survive I hope.  Also survived the expedition into the wild with 7 kids 4 years and under up Oklahoma way.  We just thought we were wearing them was us that wore out.  One youngster got sick and went home with parents early Sunday.  The rest of us decided that we needed a day of rest before heading off to work again on Tuesday so we cut our trip short and came home Sunday afternoon.  It was still enjoyable, just tiring.  All rested now and looking forward to the next time.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

How you fixed for wildfires?

Well, me and the kids and the grandkids are due a little trip with the motorhome up Oklahoma way...then I saw that they have as many wildfires as Texas does so I tried to find out the locations of those fires, since some were along I35 and thats the route we're taking.  Nothing...not one detailed map showing where they were...lots of jawing about them but no real info.  We're headed to what used to be the smallest national park in the United States (Platt National) until they changed the name to pay tribute to the Indians they bought the land from, now its called Chickasaw National Recreation Area.  Ever heard of hydrogen sulfide (you would certainly know it if you had, its the rotten egg smell)?  This park was built in the '30's by the WPA and the CCC camps.  Small but beautiful.  Hope the weather and wildfires let us enjoy Labor Day weekend.  Lots of grandkids to take fishin' and swimmin'.
Well ya'll be good out there,

Monday, July 18, 2011

Surprise, surprise!

Well we celebrated a birthday for the youngest grandson yesterday (he's one) and all was going well till the last "gift" to be unwrapped.  It was Tshirts for her boys from their mama and emblazoned on them was a surprise announcement, "I'm going to be a big brother".  Yep another grandson is on the way.  She said this was as big a surprise to her as it was to us.  She had been having some pain in her side and decided to go to the doctor Monday to see about it and when the doctor came back in after some tests she announced that daughter was pregnant again.  Daughter said that can't be.  Last time she had to have fertility drugs for months just to get pregnant.  And she didn't know?  Nope, 4 months along and she didn't know.  Youngster is due just before Christmas, and its another boy.  Man, I had nothing but girls and they all have nothing but boys.  Guess the good Lord knew what He was doing and gave me what I could handle!  Thanks Lord!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Fixin' things...not fixin' to fix things

Well I trotted off to the "john" this morning to take care of business and while I was enthroned on the "porcelain throne" my locked bathroom door swung open.  Well that was much to my surprise as you might guess.  Set about to render that problem not a problem anymore.  Got out the old cordless drill/screwdriver (with the new lithium ion batteries, ni cads have a memory, lithium don't that means if you use it for 5 minutes then recharge them, they only remember the 5 minutes and so thats all the charge they will hold and I got danged tired of running out of juice only 5 minutes into a job) anyway remembered a little trick my dad had taught me years ago (thanks Dad) about taking off the hinge and stuffing a piece of cardboard behind it to raise the catch to catch the striker plate again.  Did didn't work as well as I had remembered.  So pulled the striker plate and carved some more room lower down for a recess and redrilled the holes and reinstalled the plate.  That worked!  Now that danged ghost is just gonna have to walk through that door if he wants to come in and spy on me in the john!
All for now,

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Giving up the ghost

Well my dear old mother is not ready to settle down just yet.  I say that in regard to her car.  When she had it inspected several months ago the man passed it but said that she had oil in her radiator water.  Oops!  Sure enough my cousins checked it out and replaced the head gasket...but in the process of flushing the system they discovered, not surprisingly...oil in her radiator...again.  In checking with Saturn who are no longer in business, they found a service bulletin with info about a persistent crack in the block of most engines.  (Maybe thats why they went out of business)  She bought the car in 1996...the service bulletin came out in 1997.  A little late for warranty work...THEY'RE OUT OF BUSINESS.  Well at 91 she still wants to be independent and I say great, go to it Mom.  Just kinda wonder how much longer she's gonna need to drive or can.  Oh well, the boys are looking for her something to replace hers.  Gotta love her!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

4th of July

Well the 4th of July has come and gone out with a bang (he-he) and I have survived the hot weather so far with all my faculties still around.  Has to be a thought with the way old age seems to be creeping up on me.  This heat is beginning to bug me a little, saps the energy right out of you, unless you stay indoors with the air conditioning running full blast.  Gonna hate to see that next electric bill I'm thinking.  Could be worse, could have it go out like my sister did this past week.  Offered to let her stay in the motorhome in my driveway, at least I had it wired to run the A/C from my plug in the garage, but she said they rigged it to work till they could swap it out for her.  They told her she might as well change out the heater coils while they were at it, she was already gonna have to pay 4500 in the dollar department!  What's a few more dollars when you get into that range?  Guess I am thankful for the little things in life after all.  My how I do go on.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Spring has sprung, fall has fell, summer's here and its hot as hell!

So has anybody given thought (besides me) to the notion with 100 degree days in June, what the hell is it gonna be like in August?  Uncle Ben (not the rice) says one of our local "weather forecasters" says July is due to be less hot than normal.  What the hecks normal about Texas weather?  And whats "less hot" just 99!  Dizzy Dick says they finally got some rain recently after being dry since October last year.  Wow I bet that ground was really cracked.  Speaking of Ben, he says he does better in hot weather than he does in cold.  I told him I can always burn something to get warm, but when its hot even in the shade I don't do well.  Seems to drain the energy right out of you.  Oh well, thats life in Texas.
Stay cool,

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Wind chime

Well decided to do a little work with my Dad...even though he's been dead since '88.  How you may ask?  He had made a wind chime out of different lengths of 1 inch pipe.  Had a sweet sound.  The wood had long since rotted (weather I suppose) so I took it upon myself to string them up again, with his help.  And so I did and they're hanging on the deck as we speak.  Might say a few words about dear old Dad here...we didn't see eye to eye much of the time as I was growing up but the older I got...the smarter he got.  Ain't that amazing!  Guess he ended up teaching me all the right principles after all, even though I never listened half the time.  Damn it, I still miss him.  Bet he and Ben's maw are getting reaquainted about now.  Thanks Dad for the help on this little project and all the others over the years.  (Okay, maybe it wasn't 1 inch pipe, I've been losing lots of things with age)

Monday, June 27, 2011

Phone tag...I'm it!

Well the kids talked me into a new Apple Iphone.  Guess it was time for a new one since the old one would crap out on me at times.  By crap out I mean the danged thing would shut off for no reason.  Not only would it drop calls but it would turn itself off and nothing I did could get it back on.  Finally had to pull the battery to get it to reset and come back on.  It was time!  Yep the iphone cost me...but I can eliminate lots of other gadgets with the fool thing.  Amenities are too numerous to I won't.  Been playing with the thing for a week now and I ain't at all sure I know anymore than I did when I got the thing.  Had to get my kids to bail me out on several occasions.  It is a wizard of a modern convenience.  Oh well its only money right?  And I never saw a Wells Fargo truck following a hearse (you can't take it with you).

Danged if I don't kinda enjoy spendin' it too!  Figure since I got it might as well spend it before "this government" decides to take social security away from us.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Family Fun (oh joy)

This is the beach house we rented for the weekend in Galveston.  Talk about right on the beach!  We'll see how it works out...7 grandkids and Papa all in the same house.  Could be interesting!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

New toy for me and the yard!

Man did take some gettin' used to.  Only ran off into the street once though.  Kinda strange with the push and pull.  But it did cut down on the mowin' time.  This baby can move and cuts fast or slow.

Friday, March 11, 2011

A Seperate Species

A Separate Species
Robert Lea Lovejoy

Chapter One

Her first real memory was of water. The warm, soothing water that had washed her into an incredible dream world. The same water that had reminded her body if not her mind of the security she had known a short time ago in the comfort of her mother's womb. It was now lulling her deeper into it's
mesmerizing spell and would have taken her away to a world of harsh reality. A world where the darkness around her was struggling with the light that came from above to keep her entangled and confused and in it's grasp perpetually. But she was balancing delicately between the warmth and the darkness and enjoying the squishy, mildly salty liquid. Her old familiar friends could not possibly harm her and she would have kept that balance if the choice had been hers. Fortunately, forces she could not now understand had already made the choice for her.
She had no way of knowing that the concept of fear had not been learned yet. The warmth that held her and soothed her wanted her to accept the inevitable without emotion, but all her emotions were in play. She was delighted with what was happening. She could not know that the world retreating above her would have viewed this as totally absurd and that she should have been fighting for her life, her very existence. Instead she reveled in the warm liquid, kicking and squealing, as the bottom rose to meet her slow descent. As the tiny bubbles of air escaped from her lungs, she stabbed stubby fingers into them, scattering their rise to the surface.
It was all happening with incredible speed. She was not given the freedom to think, even if she had been capable, just the liberty to react and her reactions were to enjoy and be delighted. There was no time left for anything now but the rush toward oblivion, but there was one perception that persisted in burying itself in her subconscious. That one she would not be aware of until many years later. That memory would follow her, would seek her out and she would know one day that the shadow at the edge of her conscious was more than mere imagination.
That memory was what had streamed into her world and snatched her from the false warmth and the treacherous darkness that surrounded Death's Door. It had propelled her toward the light and the life giving breath. She had been saved from her watery grave.
She was cast out of the sea and into the reality that waited above. Perhaps because of her all too recent recollections she was proudly clinging to the realm just denied to her. Whatever the reasons, she really didn't care. She found that even though her emotions belied her tender age of eighteen months, she still wanted to wage a fierce fight against that salvation.
Floating in that same bay, she thought to herself "why did I think of that?" as the shadow of the dolphin rose beneath her to brush her thigh and nip at her toes. She had come a long way since that first traumatic memory.
"Never have figured out why I wanted to study you in the first place" she chastised as the dolphin circled her menacingly. "Come on now" she barked, "You never could mimic a shark very well."
He chattered at her and dove out of sight, leaving her once again with the sun, the waves and her thoughts. Now the memories of an almost forgotten past washed over her once again and for a short while she basked in a glimpse of remembrance.
The water had always treated her well. She trusted it and felt calm and rested in its embrace. She always came to it again and again to seek those familiar qualities. It was not surprising then that it was because of one of its marine mammals that she had chosen the course of study that led to a science degree of the sea.
Hard work and much perspiration had been spent in accomplishing that task. She chose to remain in California for her studies because of its proximity to the ocean and to the creature she decided to devote her life to. That choice had been made fairly simple by the fact that her father's summerhouse was here also, one that just happened to be completely set up as a biological laboratory.
Her father had been separated from her mother for a very long time because of the nature of his vocation that kept him hopping from one corner of the world to the other. Her mother still maintained a good relationship with him, as did Sarah. Nevertheless, her mother and Sarah were never very far away. No matter what the distance, when he was needed, he came, because they all still cared for each other very deeply.
Sarah's mother had a small house inland from the bay about a half-hour's drive. This was an oasis when the rigors of school life finally overwhelmed her ability to cope. She sometimes needed someone to confide in or discuss with and both her mother and her mother's house were convenient.
Daddy, as Sarah still called him, was engaged in all kinds of research. This meant he would be away for months at a time. This allowed Sarah free run of the summer house and the bay whenever she needed it. Her father rarely stayed there anymore anyway. But daddy's house was still home to her and she would have sought it out for it's isolation and it's water even if it had not been a part of the family.
Sarah had always had a loving relationship with this bay. She loved the warm water and the salty taste it left in her mouth. She enjoyed the sun as it splashed off the waves and sparkled in the shells she collected from the bottom.
A tiny outlet to the ocean protected the bay. This arrangement worked so well that even when the most violent storms raged outside on the open ocean, the bay remained relatively calm. This was as near to her idea of heaven as she ever thought she would get. Contentment surrounded her here in this house and in this bay.
Daddy had really outdone himself when he had purchased the area around the bay and had the house built. The road to the house was a twisting, isolated stretch of blacktop that followed the coastline for several miles. The approach to the house was from the south. A huge circular driveway looped in front with an offshoot leading to a garage and workshop.
Sarah always enjoyed timing her arrivals at sunset so she could watch the sun dance off the house, displaying it with true magnificence.
It was one of those huge two-story Victorian homes with a sweeping veranda on three sides. It sat atop the cliff that surrounded the bay like a majestic lady, master of all she surveyed. The stairs that ran down to the bay were long and continuous, stretching from the top to the bottom in one uninterrupted, but well supported span. The boathouse sat to the right of the stairs, and the sandy beach opened to the left.
Daddy had set up the boathouse as a scuba recharging station and a small marine biology lab. Sarah had used those facilities over and over again as she had prepared herself for a lifelong relationship with "her" dolphin. She had fond memories of this old house, and she had enjoyed it so often as a child. She still did.
Her undergraduate work never varied from the original goal she had set long years before. She sought to store as much information about the dolphin as possible, but she did not limit herself to that one end.
A broad background of liberal arts but a generous sampling of the sciences had yielded a Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Biology. The name on the diploma, Sarah Elizabeth Greenly, had looked so foreign and particularly stuffy when she accepted it on the day of graduation.
All this so she could know more about a creature that fascinated her so even her dreams were not sacred. He invaded them often, calling to her from across the mists of her subconscious.
She had become accustomed, no comfortable, with what the big dolphin called her, a long high-pitched shriek that sounded like "she" but was drawn out in a slow decrescendo. Together they had almost conquered the one thing that had always been an enigma to research scientists who studied these mammals, communication. Not the common intraspecies variety practiced by fellow dolphins but the human to dolphin kind.
He understood "Merlin" and responded to it. She reciprocated whenever that familiar "sheee" would seek her out. His word for her almost seemed as if he understood her womanliness, her femininity. Thinking about that made her feel a little more self-assured. She knew her ego and her hidden libido could stand all the warmth and devotion they could get.
The other thought brought the eerie awareness that this fellow mammal possessed a sight more intuitiveness than she was willing to recognize. It almost scared her to think Merlin could think of her as "female," that is, something more than just a playmate. That he would think of her at all was pushing a lot of human qualities on him. In spite of all that, this slick-skinned creature made a lot out of those near human qualities in their relationship.
Even their first encounter had held a mystery before her that her womanly wiles had wanted to attribute to some super human endowment. Regardless, her professional side still wanted further analysis. That mystery was partly responsible for his name, although she had to admit, it certainly fit him.
Strangely enough, she would be caught up in this pseudo-paradox for years, often wondering which direction she leaned toward most, the cold hard facts or the mystical aspects of his spirit. Still the shadow of a smile would creep across her lips as she would fondly recall those early days. They marked the start of a learning experience unparalleled in modern academic society.
They both had come to that secluded beach to enjoy their favorite water sports. He to play among the froth of the waves and she to seek the surf and sand and the strange kind of feeling she got from this particular beach. It was frequented by the local "free beach" aficionados who reserved this stretch of sand for the "fun-in-the-sun-sans-suit" crowd.
She enjoyed watching the others from a distance and had even shed her modest two-piece on one occasion but the excitement had proved too much for her and she had sought the comfort of the water once more until the dark settled over all.
It was on her first attempt at body surfing that they came together nose to nose. They had caught the same wave. When she doubled over in the surf to end her ride, he followed her to the bottom. There, for a brief moment while they almost touched, they seemed to recognize each other. She had recoiled mostly out of surprise and hurried away to keep herself from having to give the situation much thought.
The next time she came, she was looking for something other than the thrill of watching naked bodies in pursuit of uniform tans and this presented a stranger puzzle, for here again, she found this beautiful animal. This time the fear disappeared and when he didn't, they played together in the surf for hours.
Could it be this creature sensed her thoughts? How else could it know that this particular day was the one she had chosen to visit the beach? The questions came in unending waves and no answers were readily available. Here would be her final puzzle piece, this was where she would recall her childhood fantasy completely. It had been real!
This last encounter had taken her from the real to the surreal and the transition had been so smooth that afterwards she found no reason to question the coincidence. It was meant to be.
Their next rendezvous was all his doing. He had come to her, there at her father's summerhouse. He had called to her through the mist of that early California coast morning. It was the first time she had heard the name he had chosen for her. The first time she had thought of this animal without seeing it.
She had known even from her dreams that this beautiful mammal lay waiting and calling from the waves. For some reason she had suddenly wanted this creature for herself, to hold, to study, to love.
She had slipped from the sheets in her nakedness to grab a long nightshirt and while still on the stairs had draped it around her, barely managing the buttons in time for the back door.
She never varied from her course to the cliff, and only paused briefly at the top to assure herself of her footing before proceeding down the stairs to the beach. There she found the dorsal fin of a warm-blooded kin circling just offshore. He leaped into the air only to dive out of sight leaving a sudden sadness and a longing in the pit of her stomach.
She edged closer to the bay not wanting this meeting to end. He gave her no time to feel sorry for herself but with tremendous speed and strength beached himself at her feet. She did not flinch but lowered herself to caress the smoothness of his skin. He too reached a cool wet snout to touch the softness of her inner thigh. They were oblivious, locked in mutual fascination.
The morning had slipped to noonday, and she had slipped out of her nightshirt and into the bay to be closer to this magnificent beast. Only the pain of the sunburn on her shoulders brought her back to reality. It was now that the first inkling of what she would call him began to form in her mind. The time had so mysteriously disappeared that morning that she already had thoughts of the mystical magic of this unbelievable denizen of the deep. Their lives were now locked in the future and very closely linked in the here and now.
All this seemed as though it had happened just yesterday but in reality it had been six years since their "chance" meeting that day at the beach. All her schooling was behind her now. She could devote her time, talents, and energy to her education with her teacher, Merlin. No human being could possess as much knowledge about the ocean as he. No other human being could be as lucky as she to have this opportunity.
Her major professor had helped her land a grant from the university so she could actually get paid for enjoying her time with Merlin. Professor Gamble had intended that she utilize her time in studying the communication aspects of their relationship. In the last two years, she had become much more serious about it than she had ever been in the past. The fruits of their labor were readily evident.
The professor was giving a lot of the credit to her. He falsely deduced that she somehow possessed a unique form of telepathy that allowed her an exclusive opportunity to advance the scientific community's understanding of marine mammals. Sarah knew that their privileged communication was certainly unique but that it came from a greatly superior brain stem. One that had developed a highly sophisticated communication system in it's evolutionary past.
That system mankind referred to as sonar or more precisely echo location. She had noticed with repeated regularity that this "telepathic hotline" had somehow bordered on being somewhat more than verbal. She truly seemed to "feel" the things Merlin was so obviously trying to send to her.
In fact, feelings played so much more a part in their "talking" that she often wondered if somewhere in her mental makeup she might have a sensing device similar to a microwave dish. One that might pick up on the strong mental waves this dolphin was sending.
Together, they had come a great distance in furthering man's understanding of this complex creature's wants and needs. Sarah alone was receiving an insight into his desires. She sometimes understood his nudgings and proddings a little too well, and she would chastise him for being both precocious and promiscuous.
For all his rambunctious exuberance, this sleek, muscular, smooth skinned creature was a total fascination to Sarah. She studied long into the night on many occasions simply because she had to know more about him. Merlin never ceased to amaze her but the books still taught some very interesting facts, usually just before or after he had introduced the same material.
She learned that the dolphin brain temperature was the same as man's, 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit. She learned too that the fertility cycle of the dolphin was about what it was for human females, a 28-day cycle. The gestation period of 12 months was longer than that of a human but with a brain the size of a dolphin's it was easy to understand the need for just a little more time.
She always thought it exciting to witness the birthings at the local zoo. The new mother gave birth into the warm dampness of salty waters. Then she gently guided her precious infant toward the surface for his first attempt at breathing on his own.
Most other female members of the animal kingdom had an estrus cycle. That is, when they came into heat, they became receptive to the male and mating would then proceed. This reproductive act usually occurred by her cueing the male in some way. Usually, this entailed giving off odors or engorgement of the genitalia or by simply presenting herself before him in the mating position.
Throughout the animal kingdom, all others except two, practiced the rear entry mating stance. Cetaceans and humans were the only ones to mate face to face.
Unlike the other animals, dolphins favored man's voluntary sexual proclivity. They had sex even when there was no chance for offspring to be produced.
Sarah also discovered that along with the similarities, there were also some unique differences. The first was uncovered when scientists tried to anesthetize a dolphin for surgery. The big ocean mammal simply stopped breathing as soon as the anesthetic took affect and died. Their respiration was certainly not like mans.
Ours was autonomic, involuntary and was handled without conscious thought. The dolphin's respiration had to be voluntarily controlled because of the duration of their dives. It would not do if he was automatically stimulated to take a breath while still a hundred feet beneath the surface.
The consensus was that after meals, generally, was naptime. Dolphins rested floating at the surface. Only one half of the brain at a time underwent the sleep state, the other half ran respiration. The second difference Merlin had taught Sarah very early in their relationship.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Gettin' Fired!

I…got a job working for a road construction company in Dallas off Industrial Blvd. near downtown. It was a summer job, I was going back to school in the fall, so I thought. My buddy Doyle got me the job, he had worked there for several summers. Knew I was gonna be in trouble on the first day when they put me on an asphalt laying crew and told me to go broom off the water on the side of the road so they could lay some asphalt there. I kinda wondered why everyone else had grungy boots covered in caked on asphalt and I only had tennis shoes. Got my feet wet brooming the water and then they put me to shoveling hot asphalt…it comes out of the cooker at 2 hundred and some degrees. Hot stuff! I jumped right in and shoveled with the best of them. My shoes started steaming from being wet but they dried out soon. Didn’t discover till that evening when I pulled off my shoes just how blistered my feet were. Bought some boots! Never did work the asphalt crew again.
They sent me down south to work on a freeway system there. Watched a steam roller get loose and barrel down an off ramp toward the bottom. Then we noticed a kid hanging on for dear life and riding her to the bottom. They gave me a pickup truck that had a gas operated power broom hitched up to it. I was to broom off the shoulder of the road so they could shoot some tack and spread gravel down on it. (Tack is what they called the hot tar they spread). Was doing alright till the danged thing died. I had a 55 gallon drum of gas in the back of the pickup and so I filled the broom’s gas tank and prepared to start it again. You had to straddle the tire and give the hand crank a might twist. This thing was so old that it had a gravity fed glass bowl above the carburetor that had to fill with gas before starting it. Well, I hadn’t shut off the valve so the glass bowl was into overfilling and dumping all that overflow into the carburetor. I cranked and cranked to no avail because, I assume now, that that carburetor was flooded. Well I finally got some reaction from the piece of junk when the crank hung, then the engine backfired, pitching me off the tire and into the dirt on my back causing all my breath to be knocked right out of me.
Well, I was busy nurturing myself and hadn’t notice that the backfire through the carburetor had caused a fire! I grabbed some rags from the back of the pickup and began flailing them at the growing flames. All I did was catch the rags on fire and begin spreading the fires to several different locations with each swat. I then tried stuffing various rags in amongst the flames in hopes of denying oxygen and snuffing out the flames…wrong. The tenacious blaze simply engulfed my offerings and rekindled to new heights. Lastly, in final desperation, I heaved a couple of handfuls of dirt at the worsening flames and then turned my thoughts to disconnecting the pickup from the inferno that was growing when I remembered the full gas tank I had just filled. Didn’t want to lose a second piece of equipment and my ride. I left the blazing broom sending plumes of smoke skyward and headed back to tell the tack truck guys what had happened.
I pulled up on the opposite side of the road facing the opposite direction and one of the crew yelled for me to back up and give the tack engine some gas. I crammed her into gear and started back. Some idiot had picked that particular time to pull to a stop right behind me with his snack truck. My pickup had a load of sand in the back with the tailgate down. I crumpled the front end of that truck with the tailgate. They sent me to the house driving a old flatbed truck that had all kinds of equipment in it. This thing had some problems as well. You couldn’t dim the lights with the dimmer switch on the floor or the whole electrical system would shut down. So in order to operate with the bright lights on all the time and not offend other drivers some genius had simply duct taped the top half of the headlights so it would still function. It was late, I was tired. I had noticed that broom handle sticking out way too far beyond the bed of the truck but I paid it no more attention until I traveled across the white line on a long sweeping left curve as a Greyhound bus approached. I thought I had come to enough to retreat back to my lane when I heard the whack. When I looked in the rearview mirror the broom handle was gone and the bus was pulling over onto the shoulder. I floor boarded it, meaning I stomped the accelerator.
Didn’t go back on that crew again. They sent me out to run a sheep foot and do some compacting on newly graded roadways. Now a sheep foot is a big heavy round apparatus with feet of steel that tamps down freshly graded dirt in preparation for laying asphalt. I had driven this tractor before and its brakes were shot. You had to stomp on them to get the dumb thing to stop. Well I was doing okay till they hollered its lunch time. They told me to take it down the hill and park it in front of the road grader. Started down the hill with some speed in anticipation of some grub when I remembered the brakes. Began to pump the pedal, began to stomp the pedal, began to apply both feet to the pedal, began to jump up and down on the pedal. Then a flash of brilliance hit me. I’d just steer it around the obstructions and onto the flat and wait for gravity and lack of momentum to slow us. About that time is when the heavy load I told you about began to make itself known. It came to bear on the hitch of the tractor causing the front tire, the steering tire, to suddenly raise off the ground. With steering gone I settled in for the ride and noticed we are headed for the front end of that road grader. Hit with a mighty jolt. Steering wheel just spun having sheered all semblance of remaining mechanisms in the process.
After lunch they assigned me to a road grading crew, probably figuring I couldn’t get into trouble with anymore equipment standing on the ground. My job was to tell the guy running the grader what to do, that is, whether to fill in or grade off the dirt of the roadway. Simple you say. Well, they gave me a folding wooden ruler to take measurements with and told me to be careful with it as that was the only one they had. I promised and then as I walked off the unfolded end somehow got between my striding legs and snapped in two.
They brought me out a pick slip on the spot. I was fired!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Will You Waltz With Me In the Pale Moonlight

A friend wrote this poem and asked if I could put it to music...Wow! Was proud to try and this was the result...thought the poem was great, the music flowed all at once and the harmony was pretty good too...since its all me. Not to brag mind you!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Acting Crazy

Well I guess its time for another love song, always room for one more!

Friday, January 28, 2011

A Gunman Named "Red"

This one was kinda long and drawn out but it had something to say so we wrote it.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


This was my way of apologizing to the Cowboy community for stealing some of their thunder...forgive me boys!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

That Old Mason Jar

This one came to me in a dream...wonder who wrote it?