To any of you who may have been offended by the intrusion of politics onto the normally-non-political Oddball yesterday, I apologize. The mistake was mine in not explaining that I had intended the exchange to be by private email, rather than on the blog. Be that as it may, today is another day. The fever blaster says the temperature is 83 degrees outside at 9 o'clock yet I have the window open and a cool breeze is occasionally penetrating the upsurge in heat. There is a Bluegrass Festival occurring in Prescott today and I had sort of planned to make an excursion there. But, as frequently happens in my senior years, the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. So we'll see. Speaking of senior years, one of my friends and former colleagues in the tee-vee-news-biz is marking his 80th birthday today. I now have three friends and/or loved ones in the 80's. As I emailed the newest of the bunch this morning, hitting 80 is a milestone. Except in golf. (He is a golfer.) I'm less than a handful of years from reaching that level myself. I find that reaching this age means one's life is much less full. (Well, there is that friend who is the oldest of us who is going on a cruise to Cuba in a month or so.) When I am not, as SWMBO is wont to say, "wasting my time at the computer" I spend my time scheduling doctor appointments, monitoring my intake of pharmaceuticals and napping. Oh, I do spend an inordinate amount of time watching the birds. And on my (very) short evening jaunt I have made the aquaintance of a bunny who freezes as I get to nearly 10 feet of him and seems to listen intently as I speak to him. And there is reading. I am about halfway through M.F.K. Fisher's "The Art of Eating", which I have been enjoying greatly. And kitchen-stuff, such as the loaf of rye bread I made yesterday and which SWMBO and I agreed probably needs more rye flour in the recipe to "kick it up a notch." And there's always something on television. I don't know how many channels we have but I can always find something interesting to watch. Last night it was a program showing the Mark Twain prize for humor being awarded to Jay Leno. He's older, too. Which brings me to my new favorite adage: Today I am older than I've ever been but younger than I'll be tomorrow. Life is good.
Along with the heat we've been experiencing there is still the drought in Arizona. As the t.v. guys keep saying "Much of the Southwest is a tinder box." Here are some pictures I shot recently in my area which illustrate the dry conditions.
A tale from my life of crime . . . From mid 1987 until late 1991, SWMBO and I lived in Mexico as ex-pat retirees. We went to Mexico on a tourist visa which was good for six months. That meant we had to make a trip to the United States and then return to Mexico with new papers every six months. Most of the time that was fine. A nice trip to the land of milk and honey to do some shopping for items we couldn't find in Mexico at that time, like cheddar cheese and regular-size Vitamin C and a Sunday New York Times. We would occasionally visit friends in the States, maybe go to a restaurant for a good steak, have a good time before heading back to our new home, over a thousand miles below the border, in Guadalajara. But one time the trip to El Norte, as the time drew near, began to seen onerous. One of my new friends in Mexico said I could buy papers right here in Guadalajara and not go to the border. It was understood that these papers were forgeries of the official documents but were said to be perfectly passable. So I decided to do it and was given an address in downtown Guadalajara. (Guadalajara was the second largest city in Mexico at the time, about four million people strong.) I parked my car in the garage at the huge downtown market, walked down the cement stairs and crossed through the market, past butcher shops where the heads of sheep and pigs were on display, past many small food stands, past every thing under the sun that could be sold. Out on the street, I walked another block or so and found the address I had been given. An open doorway with a young man idling in it (standing guard?) led to a steep and dark stairway. I climbed the steps and found an office with several more young men standing around, staring at me. Eventually I was escorted to an inner office where a very old man was seated at a desk. I gave him my information, he told me a price and said to come back in a week. I did, paid him the fee in cash and was handed my new papers. Then I retraced my steps once more and drove home with a smile on my face. I was good for another six months. But my experience had me nervous, not sure if I was going to be robbed, beaten up, or worse, arrested by police posing as a forgery ring. I never did it again. The six month drive to the border was more preferable than the (imagined?) danger of buying fake papers. That was many years ago in a foreign country. I think the statute of limitations (if there is such a thing in Mexico) has passed by now.
The Weather Gods tell us it will get to 106 degrees Fahrenheit here today. It's already 93 at 9:30 in the morning. Phoenix, about 90 miles away, is supposed to hit 115. So what does my dear, dear friend Tom do? He posts pictures of the fog they've been enjoying over on the Pacific Coast! Rub it in, Tommy! Well we have a way to beat the heat here too.
Well, we have come to the denouement of another week. I like using big words like "denouement" once in awhile to prove how smart I am. Then I go to Google and look them up to see what they mean. Whatever. It is time for this week's edition of what you waded through Sunday through Thursday for. The Friday Funnies! And speaking of words, Auntie Acid has a thought.
When I show you two Auntie Acid cartoons in one day, I know it's time to wrap it up.
Have a supercalifragilisticexpialidocious weekend, Gentle Readers, and always remember to keep laughing!
As the old song goes . . "Don't get around much any more." But I did voyage the 8 miles into Prescott on Saturday to visit (among other things) the Territorial Days Arts and Crafts Fair.
It included a trip back in time to the days of tie-dye.
Still popular it seems.
There were tchotchkes of all kinds on view and for sale.
And some fine art, like this pottery from Mata Ortiz, in Chihuahua, Mexico.
As I told one lady visiting from Tucson, there is an event on the Courthouse Square nearly every weekend all summer long.
As you can see in the background of the next photo, its big trees and grassy lawn make it a great place to relax throughout the hot season and, perhaps, just listen to some music from the Yavapai Brass Quintet.