Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Monday, August 3, 2009

Family & Friends

We've just had a busy (and fluid) weekend as two of our grandchildren showed up on Saturday. They are Christina and Lesly.

The BRD apparently was casting a spell here.

Sunday brunch at Casa Bonita and Lesly had her hair down.

While Christy got surprised by the camera.

Outside, J'Norm . . . the BRD's beau . . . was on his way to a classic car show with her and showing off a little car glamour of his own: his Shelby Cobra.

Regular readers of this blog may recall that J'Norm (he can't decide whether his name is Jack or Norm so the BRD created this combo) also has a GTO while the BRD has an '83 Porsche and an '83 Mercedes.

At any rate a fine weekend was enjoyed by all.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

At long last . . .

. . . a new look to my blog.

I don't know whether it will bring any new thoughts. Doubtful.

I just decided I didn't like my photo. Too gray.

And, while it was a beautiful photo of Smoke, I've decided to give him a rest.

My photo, incidentally, was taken near the water in Ensenada, Mexico a few years ago. The banner photo came from our very own sky one night this summer.

For some odd reason, Blogger a few weeks ago began refusing my commands to make the text bigger. I don't know why. I don't know how to get back to the way it was. If anyone can help me with that, just let me know.

I guess that's all for now.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Goldie is a boy!

I just spotted him out lying on the patio and went out and coaxed him over for a good petting session, during which I sneaked a peek in the crucial area.

He also really enjoyed the petting session today and stretched and rolled on the patio.

No more confusion.

He's a he!!!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


This cat . . . Golden Boy or Golden Girl, I still don't know which . . . has taken to one of our chairs virtually every morning for his/her cat nap. This morning when I arose I looked out and there he/she was. So I carefully went out and walked down the ramp, right past the cat's chair and sat down in an adjoining one, just a couple of feet away. Goldie . . . as I have taken to calling him/her . . . watched me but showed no fear and didn't move from his/her spot. After a bit I reached out one hand slowly and let him/her take a sniff, then touched him/her briefly on the forehead. Goldie then lay his/her head down and closed his/her eyes. After a little more sitting quietly, I got up. Goldie watched me as I approached, again put my hand down for a sniff, then lightly scratched the top of his/her head and finally petted him/her on the back several times and touched his/her cheeks (where their sense organs are located). Goldie again showed no fear or alarm, closing his/her eyes and stretching his/her neck. I guess now we are pals.

The next step is a careful examination to determine the gender. This he/she, him/her, his/hers bit is becoming tiresome!

Saturday, July 25, 2009


Smoke, our sidewalk supervisor, yard foreman and the only one of our cats that we let go outdoors, has taken to napping on one of the deck chairs recently. I looked out and spotted him there this morning.

But, to my surprise, I discovered another cat on an adjacent chair.

This little darlin' has been hanging around lately and Smoke seemingly has accepted him. He's quite shy, yet bold, and neither of us has been able to approach him. I think he's a girl but SWMBO says yellow/orange cats are always boys and she named him Golden Boy. But he's not at all aggressive which, I guess, is why Smoke has accepted him so readily.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Round-Up

O.K. So you don't like my blathering about the rain. All right, then I'll get political again and see if that rouses you.

#1 - Watching the News Hour with Jim Lehrer, I was stunned to view Dina Temple-Raston, who I've heard many times on NPR. She's a stunning woman with great dimples and I predict she'll be on t.v. somewhere, soon. She's also very smart, having degrees from Northwestern, Columbia and some Chinese university. She speaks French (her first language - she was born in Belgium), English (obviously) and Arabic. She's also the author of a couple of very well reviewed books. Watch for her on a t.v. news program soon.

#2 - Dick Cheney was a modern day Attila the Hun. His latest sin was that he tried to convince President Bush to use military troops to arrest the so-called Lackawanna Six - an alleged terrorist group in suburban Buffalo, New York. For some strange reason, W rejected the advice and had civilians take the guys into custody. Word is that Bush loyalists are throwing Cheney to the wolves but who would you rather have the wolves devour?

#3 - O.K. This one isn't political. Heard Terry Gross interview Zooey Deschanel on "Fresh Air" today. Seems Ms. Deschanel was named after the "Franny and Zooey" character J.D. Salinger created. She held off on reading the book until after her high school graduation at age 18 but then found, to her relief, that she loved the character. My friend, RS, loves her and, I think, so do I.

That's enough mental insulin for tonight. Play nice, amongst yourselves. other thing. How come I can no longer adjust the size of my type on Google?

Here comes the rain!

A monsoon storm is moving through.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Post-rain skys

A few photos of a post-rain sky. (Yes, we finally got some rain.)

Meanwhile, back on earth . . .

If you click on the photos, you can almost smell the roses.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Thursday, July 16, 2009

I exist!

Yes, I am legal once again.

Got my driver's license in the mail today, replacing the one I left in Nevada. (see previous post)

On Monday, I went to the public library, to the credit union, to one of my banks, to Sam's Club, to Costco, to AAA . . . all for purposes of restoring my life to normality. The lady who helped me at AAA had the best line of the day: "Now you know what women go through when they get married and change their name!"

The only place that wouldn't/couldn't help me was the local Social Security office, where I sought to replace my card and my Medicare card. The lady there wanted to see my driver's license and wouldn't accept the confirmation of my application for a replacement one from the Arizona Department of Transportation, even though it carried my name, address and license number.

So maybe tomorrow, I'll go back and get that done. Then it's just a matter of waiting for the mail each day to see what new surprise turns up in my box.

After that episode in Laughlin, anything else in my life seems rather mundane so that's why I haven't been blogging this week. I shall endeavor to snap out of it and improve. Stay tuned.

Sunday, July 12, 2009


Ah, our trip is over.
Actually it ended two days early, after I lost my billfold.
Along with a couple of hundred dollars, all of my credit cards, all of my identification and whatever.
Let me say . . . we had a great time until then. My pal, Steve, came up from Phoenix and we played craps for several hours and he did very good and I (more conservative) did okay (until I lost my billfold.)
SWMBO and I had a great meal the last night.
And the next morning I said "do you have any idea where my billfold is?"
She didn't. Neither did I.
So the vacation ended.
But I'd go again. In spite of SWMBO's statement: "It will be a cold day in hell!"
Who's the loser here?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Travelin' Man

Hiya pals. Just wanted you all to know I'll be traveling for the next few days to one of the gambling meccas of the country. No, not the big one. No, not the second biggest one. The third one. It's in Nevada, too. I'll let you figure out the rest (Golden Nugget). But I didn't want to leave you without a few random thoughts.

#1 - I read today that Michael Jackson's autopsy revealed a nearly bald man (just some peach fuzz) with nothing in his stomach except some undigested pharmaceuticals and a very frail body covered with needle marks.

#2 - Sarah Palin held interviews with all the networks yesterday (or the day before) on the shore of some lake way up by the Arctic Circle, bragging about her desire to indulge herself in fish guts rather than governing the state whose people elected her. As someone said "She has perfected the image of 'the victim'." I think if any of us were to elect her to anything ever again, we'd be the victims.

#3 - That crazy "leader" of Iran made a new speech saying there was absolutely no problem with his recent "election" and said the opposition couldn't produce even one piece of paper to say otherwise. Huh? Have you taken a good look at this guy? Do his eyes kind of resemble the spinning wheels of a slot machine?

#4 - John Boehner, the Republican leader of the U.S. House of Representatives, has been forced to hold news briefings virtually every day saying how bad the latest Obama program will leave the nation. Hmmm, "leave the nation" . . . might be a good idea for Boehner. But you never heard me say that.

#5 - Walter Cronkhite apparently really is in a decline due to serious health problems, which in turn are probably due to his advanced age. He is in his early 90's. Prepare for another "big news story."

#6 - Speaking of "big news stories", I was appalled by the attention given by the media to the death of the previously mentioned Michael Jackson. It reminded me of a day in my past when a strange executive producer over me at a television station ordered me to lead every newscast with the latest on a Michael Jackson tour. That was over 20 years ago. She (the exec producer) isn't in the business any more to the best of my knowledge. But speaking of more current times, U.S. Representative Peter King of New York (I think that's his name) made an unfortunate statement to the media the other day, saying he was upset about all the media attention to this . . . (approximate quote) "child molestor, pedophile, pervert". Now, true as that may be it's not going to endear him to many of his mindless voters. If you're a politician and you want to be re-elected, you probably should keep thoughts like that to yourself.

Since I'm not a politician, I can say I was appalled by NBC's attention to the Jackson "story" and even moreso to Katie Couric's newscast on the night of the Jackson memorial.

But who am I? I'm not in the biz anymore and most people didn't listen to me when I was.

I could go on but I guess that's enough for y'all to mull over while I'm away.

Monday, July 6, 2009


This is the "work in progress" rear patio that SWMBO has been developing, with only minor help from yours truly. The supervisor (Smoke) loves it on a coolish evening.

I would like to point out that in the next photo, there are 8 (EIGHT) hibiscus blossoms on our two plants in ONE DAY! I think that may be a record!


Best line of the day, by comedian and syndicated columnist Argus Hamilton:

Sarah Palin resigned as governor of Alaska Friday apparently to run for president. As she spoke her long, dark hair fell over a bright red double-breasted jacket. The GOP waited years to have a candidate who sounds like Richard Nixon and looks like Michael Jackson.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

The glorious 5th of July!

The first part of this post is for my pal, Tombo.

I know he likes classic cars and if he was down on the Row (Whiskey Row) in Prescott yesterday - the 4th of July - he may have seen this brute parked. If not . . . Tombo, here you go.

Now, I wasn't on the Row but I got to see the GTO when SWMBO and I went to the BRD's home for a 5th of July barbecue today. It belongs to the BRD's beau!

You say you want a closer look at the main entree?
Your wish is my command.

Barbecued baby back ribs fresh off the grill!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Friday, July 3, 2009

Happy 3rd of July!

Uh, well I don't mean the 4th cuz it's not yet. So I cheated a bit and went to Prescott a day early to look around. I avoid the town on the 4th because it's just too difficult to get around. This is THE BIG HOLIDAY in Prescott, where it's known not so much as the 4th of July as Prescott Frontier Days. The highlight is what is known locally as "the World's Oldest Rodeo." A couple of other towns also claim that honor but Prescott every year stakes its claim once again.

Well, since the bars were jammed already I decided to take a look at the arts and crafts fair on "the Square".

As you might expect, it was mostly western oriented.

One vendor decided to take advantage of the economy with this sign.

I mentioned that the fair was on "the Square". That's the center of Prescott, a tree-lined area one block on each side, surrounding the local courthouse.

There is some permanent art on the square which trys to maintain the western heritage of Prescott.

Along with the arts and crafts vendors, of course there are food vendors as well. One of the favorites is always the fry bread booth.

You, of course, noticed the presence of a lawman there. He's a deputy county sheriff, hoping to maintain order, even if he is wearing a short sleeved shirt!

Throughout the town, western hats are in fashion during Frontier Days. But some people go even further to create a mood.

Then there was this "pretty in pink" number.

But some days, your blogger and photographer just gets dumb lucky. Looking for hats, he spotted the next great sombrero. When I asked the young lady wearing it if I could take her picture, she laughed and said "I always look so dorky in pictures." But I convinced her that I'd make her look beautiful and she posed for me.

Now, if that's a dorky look . . . well, I'll eat her hat!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


This is another amazing musical performance by an a cappella group from SLOVENIA! Doing a song about rain in AFRICA! The beginning is fantastic and I thank my pal Tommy C for sending it to me. Watch and enjoy.

Stir Fry

When SWMBO gets inspired in the kitchen and produces something as beautifully colorful as one of her stir-frys, I have to get the camera out.

This was stir fried pork and peppers.

The second picture shows the dish after addition of a sauce that included cornstarch, mirin rice wine, soy sauce and chicken stock.

Let me tell you. It tastes as good as it looks!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

More yuk, yuk ukes

So here's the deal, see. A classmate of mine from high school . . . who I don't think I've seen since high school . . .which is a long, long, long time ago . . . (I think that's enough sidebar thoughts) . . . sent me (and a bunch of other former classmates) this video the other day of the Ukelele Orchestra of Great Britain doing the theme from "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly". I liked it. I posted it. Then Lucy read my blog, saw the video and spent an unconscionable amount of time looking at other videos by the same musical group. And posted one of her own on her blog. (Check it out.) Which got me to go back and look at a number of other videos by this very talented and very funny group. They're so good I've been obsessed with posting yet another of their videos. So here is the Ukelele Orchestra of Great Britain doing "The Orange Blossom Special."

Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

I bet you didn't even know Great Britain HAD a ukelele orchestra!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Death . . .and timing

There has been a lot of talk in the past couple of days about Michael Jackson's terrible faux pas in choosing to die on the same day as Farrah Fawcett. Even worse he bit the big one only a few hours after her death was announced. So he blew her right out of the front pages and television newscast leads. After she had done so much, too. I mean, she had just had her t.v. documentary about her fight for life aired on the tube to much critical acclaim. So we were prepared for her death and ready to mourn her in style. And then Michael jumped in and seized all the headlines.

So in light of this valuable lesson, I am asking you, my friends and readers, to promise me this: when I die give me a day or two to myself before you take over the "story of the day."

Thank you.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Farrah Fawcett died today at the age of 62 after a three year battle with cancer.

Some bad is always accompanied by some good. Her death gave me the opportunity to post this picture one more time.

...Update: Music superstar and accused child molester Michael Jackson also left us today. Sudden cardiac arrest.