Thursday, January 5, 2012


Tuesday night the Iowa Republican caucuses were held.  Michele Bachman visited all 99 counties so people could get to know her better.  Apparently they did.  She finished in a far distant sixth place but exhultantly told a small crowd of supporters that she was marching on all the way to the presidency.

Then she went to bed and perhaps had a chat with folks who said her campaign was broke and her hopes had been nullified.  The next day she pulled out with a speech in which she pronounced "poignant" just like it's spelled.

The Texas Tornado, Governor Rick Perry, after a lowly 5th place finish, said he was going home to Texas to "reassess my campaign".  That translates into: "write my concession speech."

But, out on a jog the next morning, he heard a voice from above (or perhaps a commercial on the radio of a passing car) that said "But wait!  There's more!"  Soon he announced that he was going on to make a fool of himself in two more debates in New Hampshire and continue his campaign in South Carolina.

Was it that last drink I had last night or is something else making me feel dizzy?

Stay tuned, gentle readers.  If you think it's been nuts so far, just wait until Newt gets wound up.  Oh.  He is?

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


Finally.  Sure, it's only January 4th but it seems like forever.  The Iowa Republican caucuses are finally over.

The big winner (by 8 votes out of over 100,000 cast) was Mitt Romney.  Rick Santorum followed close behind.  Loopy Ron Paul finished in third.  Nasty Newt Gingrich slumped from first place in the polls two weeks ago to a distant fourth in the final vote.  Rick Perry, confused as ever, finished fifth and said he was going home to Texas to (lick his wounds) reassess his campaign.  Folks, that means he's dropping out.  And dead last was the miracle worker, Michelle Bachman.  Last night she was full of spunk, saying she was headed for South Carolina.  Then she canceled her flight and this morning, less than 12 hours later, she announced she'd had enough.

By the way, in the drawing above, I make the candidates to be, from left to right, Romney, Gingrich, Perry, Bachman, Paul and Santorum.  Your views may vary.

So it's on to New Hampshire.  The very angry Gingrich got out of Iowa on a chartered flight before midnight and arrived in the first primary state in the dark of night, scuttling off the plane like a venomous spider.

So, let's see.  What are we left with?  Five candidates.  Probably four after Perry's expected departure speech.  Plus Jon Huntsman, who's been lurking in New Hampshire, ready for the big show to descend.  And in Iowa?  Must be a feeling of disappointment to Republicans who saw their much vaunted caucuses end up in a virtual tie.  Kind of like a lot of (c'mon, you had to know this was coming) rotten corn.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


After hassling Tom (Light Breezes) about his missing a day of blog posting yesterday, here I am late in the day with nothing to show.  Well, I've been running around today doing errands and the rest of the time being fascinated by the Iowa Republican primary.  It's nearly over now.  By which I mean it's nearly time for the caucuses to start and we should (according to Rachel Madow) start seeing results soon after that.  So.  No big post today.  Nothing to report.  Don't worry, I'll be back tomorrow and maybe even later tonight.

Sunday, January 1, 2012


In keeping with our tradition of dining deliciously but simply on New Year's Eve, SWMBO and I shared a simple salad . . .

fried oysters, sugar peas . . .

naan (Indian flatbread) . . . (not shown) . . . champagne . . .and the BRD's persimmon pudding and ice cream for dessert.

It was all scrumptious.  I think it was lights out before 11 but after watching the ball drop in New York City.

Today's first breakfast of the new year will center on SWMBO's caramel pecan cinnamon rolls, which were made yesterday.  Take a look . . . and eat your hearts out!

Later today, I'll roast some pork ribs and sweet potatoes.  And tomorrow, we shall endeavor to begin shedding some of the holiday pounds we've undoubtedly added.

Saturday, December 31, 2011


It is a beautiful day in Arizona.  The sun is shining.  The temperature is in the 60's.  No snow anywhere.  Darn near perfect.  As I was out running some last minute errands this morning, I spotted a scene in a parking lot that simply shouted BLOG POST at me.  So I approached the two individuals pictured below and asked them if I could photograph them.  They agreed after I told them I'd shoot them from the back so they couldn't be identified.  Here's the result.

The young gal out walking her two dogs.  The guy riding his bike.  They met in a parking lot.  It just spells 21st Century Dating to me.

By the way after I took the photograph, I told them I had a blog and asked if they'd mind if I put the photo on it so they could be seen all over the world.

I think the gal said "what's a blog?"  The guy asked me what it was called and when I told him, he laughed once again.  They both said it was okay so here they are.

As I said to them as I drove away I say now to you: Happy New Year.

Friday, December 30, 2011

NEARING THE END (of the year, silly)

Well, here we are once again, nearing the end of a year.  But before we wind 2011 up, you have to take a look at an amazing Christmas card from some friends of sweet LucyI think I know how it's done but this one is just amazing.  Just clink on that link and take a look.  I'll wait right here.


Oh!  You're back.  Now wasn't that art work absolutely fascinating?  It must have taken forever to create.

As for me and the year just over, I found this ecard from Some ecards just perfect.

Happy New Years Eve Eve, everybody!

Thursday, December 29, 2011


I was at a loss for anything to blog about today until I read the post of a friend who shall remain nameless.  He said his work was so slow this week it was like being retired and he was bored, bored, bored.  So I decided to take a look at how I spend my day.

This morning I rose about 8, went into the kitchen and started heating water for SWMBO'S tea, microwaved a cup of coffee, emptied the cats' water dish and refilled it, added cat food to the two food dishes, and got out our morning pills.  Then I went back to my bedroom, got my glasses and came back to the kitchen to change the picture on our daily calendar.  (Of course, it's a cat calendar.)  By the time all that was done, it was 8:30.  I went to the computer, checked a couple of emails, then read through Mike Allen's morning rundown from Politico.  Then looked through the headlines from the New York Times.  Then I went to Facebook and looked at a few new postings.  Then to my local newspaper to read the stories that interested me.  Checked the obituaries.  I wasn't listed.  A good day.

So by now it's around 10:30 and I decided to watch a movie from Netflix.  But first I had to take the disk of "Midnight in Paris" out to the mailbox.  (I liked it but thought it wasn't as good as Woody Allen's earlier movies in the Annie Hall era.  SWMBO didn't like it at all.)  Then the new movie.  "Water for Elephants".  We had both read the book and SWMBO watched the movie yesterday.  It's a 2 hour movie but with a couple of bathroom breaks, another cup of coffee and a couple of butterflake rolls, it was around 1 o'clock by the time I finished.  We both loved the book and the movie.

Got dressed and told SWMBO I was going to run the disk down to the mailbox a mile or so away.  They don't pick up mail there until 4 p.m.  She said "I don't suppose you'd like to pick up a sandwich at Maya's?"  I said "sure" so I called in our order and then set out for the mailbox.  Maya's (a Mexican restaurant) is right across the street and the food was ready.  Picked up a carnitas torta for SWMBO and a shredded beef burro for me.  Which we ate as soon as I got home.  Actually I ate half of mine and wrapped up the rest for supper.  SWMBO was hungrier and finished hers.

Back to the computer to read some blog posts and look at the latest polling on the Republican primary out of Iowa.  Right now it looks like Romney, Paul and Santorum finishing 1-2-3.  Gingrich looks like he's slipped to 4th.  Romney and Paul are putting on a full court press this final weekend.  Santorum has been here so long he's practically a resident.

O.K.  Time to clean up the cat pan area.  Took one pan out back and hosed it out and left it to soak in the sun with some baking soda.  Came back inside and just about finished the Sunday New York Times.  Retrieved the cat pan after drying it in the sun and refilled it with litter.  I also have the Florida State-Notre Dame football game on.  Decided to take a shower and did.

Then I decided to write this blog post.  It's now nearly 5 o'clock.  I still have a couple of sections of the Times to finish and I've got one library book on my new Kindle Fire and one book from the local library and my time is running out.

There's nothing unusual about today.  It's about normal.

Am I bored?  I haven't had time to consider it.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


The BRD sent this video to me this morning and I liked it so much I thought I'd share it with you.

Monday, December 26, 2011


Can you really tell me these don't look good?

I may be one of the rare ones.  I like Brussels sprouts and I like broccoli.  But I know many people, primarily but not totally men, who claim to hate both of them.

SWMBO roasted some Brussels sprouts last night to go with our Christmas ham and sweet potatoes.  She said she was going to go with a recipe she saw Gordon Ramsey prepare on television.  Simple: salt, pepper and olive oil.  They were delicious though maybe a bit firm.

I looked for recipes for them on the Web this morning and found many variations, some of them Ramsey's.  Pancetta or smoky bacon, chestnuts, balsamic vinegar, lemon, Parmesan cheese . . . all of them can be used to kick the sprouts up a notch, as another television chef says.  One chef says to start them cut side down in a very hot black iron skillet, then put it under the broiler for a few minutes.  She said the extreme heat is the way to successfully roast them.

Wikipedia also says Brussels sprouts are reputed to have anti-cancer properties but that these virtually disappear if one boils the sprouts.  That fits with SWMBO's mother's advice about cooking vegetables of all kinds: if you boil them, most of the vitamins disappear when you drain them.

In a television appearance on the Regis Philbin show a few years ago Ramsey prepared Brussels sprouts.  Philbin commented "I don't like Brussels sprouts."

Ramsey responded, "But you haven't tasted them yet.  How can you say that?  At least give me a chance to let you taste something different."

Later, the show's co-host Kelly Ripa told Ramsey "this is the longest I've heard you go without using the F-word."

Let it be established right here that the SWMBO prepared the entire dinner, including the Brussels sprouts, last night without using the F-word either.  I think.

One point of clarification.  The photo above came from the Web.  I was too busy eating to snap a picture of SWMBO's sprouts.

Sunday, December 25, 2011


" 'Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house,
not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse . . ."

Lilly had taken a liking to the newest thing lying around: my blazer!

The Santas were in readiness.

The candles were lit.

The table was filling with lobster and steak  (and potatoes and asparagus and copious quantities of wine!)

In the center of the table, a pretty Christmas bow.

And at one end was another - the BRD's Beau Jack!

Paying careful attention - the famous SWMBO.

When up on the roof there arose such a clatter, it woke up Miss Lilly to see what was the matter.

Santa Claus came and left us with gifts.  When they all had been opened and wrapping discarded, Mister T. settled down, curled up in the midst.

And here is the hostess, dancing with glee.  She shouted out merrily "You can credit . . . . . well, me!

Friday, December 23, 2011


Mingus Mountain was decorated for Christmas the other evening as the setting sun put some color in the low clouds.

Thursday, December 22, 2011


I was taking a look at the street signs in my neighborhood recently.  It doesn't take much to figure out that the developer had a western theme in mind.

The thing that I can't figure out is how, in the midst of all this Old West ranching country signage, did one street get named for a farmer.

O.K.  Look out.  Here comes your ear worm.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


As I (hardcore Democrat) said to SWMBO (very hardcore Democrat) this evening "Y'know we're gonna miss these crazy Republicans when this is all over!"  She responded "Yeah, we're gonna go into withdrawal."

We both mean "have you ever seen anything like this?"

Iowa, for example.  First it was Romney.  Then Bachman.  Then Perry came out of nowhere.  Then he faded and Newt Gingrich rose from the dead.  Then the voters caught on to him and Romney came back to life.  And today Ron Paul seems to be leading the pack.  I mean RON PAUL!  This guy is so far out on the limb the cartoonists ought to be drawing his eyes with little spirals in them.  The Iowa caucuses are now less than two weeks away.  If Ron Paul wins and he very well could because he apparently has the best organization in Iowa it will confirm one thing.  The political elites (and that's who decides these things at a caucus, it's not like a primary where people actually go to the polls and cast ballots) will have been realized as stark raving mad.  Ron Paul has as much chance of being the Republican candidate for president as I do.  So on we go.

One more thing.  The crazy people we the voters elected to the House two years ago.  I say "we" but I really wasn't part of it.  My candidate lost to a bizarre dentist from Flagstaff with weird hair.  Anyway, the new crop of Republicans in the House who won't support anything President Obama wants.  Their "leader" is John Boehner of Ohio, who ran after he noticed how much money the federal government was taking out of his paycheck and decided to do something about it.  But he may be the weakest Speaker of the House since Newt Gingrich.  And about the same kind.  Gingrich was famous for meeting with his caucus and deciding on an approach to a problem, then walking out to meet with the press and changing his mind 180 degrees by the time he started speaking.  Boehner's problem is that he decides to do something, like supporting the payroll deduction two month deal the Senate passed overwhelmingly, then meeting with his caucus and learning that the crackpot new Republicans won't go along with it so he goes back to the reporters with a 180 degree reversal of his position.

It's enough to drive you insane!  And, of course, make me do something I've tried to do less of.  Which is write a political screed like this and maybe piss off a bunch of you guys and gals.  So I'll stop right here, make another drink, and stew in my own juices for awhile.


I had a brief email conversation with a friend in California this morning.  I started by asking, rhetorically, when I've been gone from the state in which I grew up, North Dakota, for decades . . why do friends and family who still live there ask me when I'm coming "home".  My answer?  I AM HOME!

Growing up in North Dakota meant long winters of frequent subzero temperatures and snow and ice everywhere.  I moved to Arizona and continue to live here because I love the climate.

People say "but don't you miss the change of seasons?"  No, I don't because I have the change of seasons right here where I live.  Now granted, about half of my 33 years in Arizona were spent in Phoenix and it does get unbearably hot there in the summer.  But other times of the year it is heaven on earth.

And have I mentioned the Grand Canyon?  One of the great wonders of the world is only about 100 miles from where I sit typing these words.  Since I reached Senior Citizen age and received my Golden Age passport, it doesn't even cost me anything to get into the park, as many times as I want.

So don't ask me again, folks, I am home.  Home in Arizona.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


I've been noticing a building under construction on the edge of Viewpoint in our town.  This morning I drove over and asked a workman on his break what it was going to be.  A new Mormon Church, he said.  Looks like it will be a big one.

At least it's providing some jobs in the community.

Monday, December 19, 2011


Much has been made of what good lives our three cats and the BRD's three cats have.  Much of that comes (perhaps jealously) from dog owners.  Well the BRD's three cats share the home with a dog, too!  As some of you long time readers know, his name is Wrigley, or Wrigs for short.  And just offhand, I'd say he has a pretty good life too.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Saturday, December 17, 2011


This is how Mr. T (for Taz)(for Tasmanian Devil) spends a lot of his days, playing with his little man doll.

Ah, I know he's here somewhere.

THERE he is!

Oooops!  He threw me!

Are you looking at me?

Gotcha, you little rascal.

Man, oh, man, all that work made me thirsty and someone left the kitchen faucet on.

The cat belongs to the Beautiful Rich Daughter.

The photo credits are due to She Who Must Be Obeyed, who was house sitting Mr. T and his two siblings.