Friday, July 31, 2009
Last night Wifey and I were invited to join friends for drinks at the local Elks Lodge. Ya just can't walk into the lodge. A member either meets you at the door or they have to buzz you in at the front door. And you just can't buy drinks at the Elks Lodge. A member buys them for you otherwise you're high and dry.
John, Shelly and I drank beer. Helen had Blue Saphire rocks. Joanie had some whiskey thing with coke. Wifey had wine and then switched to a drink called the Sperm Donor.
There were stories. There was laughing. There was gossip. I liked my Elks Lodge beer.
It was so fun that I made out an application to be an Elk. My grandfather was an Elk. Grandmother was a member of the Elks Auxillary. Must be an okay thing to join.
The lodge has a swimming pool and Gracie will definitely want to swim in it every chance she gets. The drinks are cheap. They serve chicken dinners Thursday night. There are taco nights and cook your own steak night.
But the lodge is soooooo very white. 100% . Lots of pasty old white men in checkered pants, white shoes and belts.
When I'm initiated they'll no doubt ask me why I want to be an Elk. Well hell, I'll say. . . this place is tooooo white. We gots to get some color in here. And I mean that.
Little do they know as do few other people that Wifey's great grandmother was black. We be crossing that Lodge color line any day now albeit ever so small.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
George Harrison and Eric Clapton wrote Badge. What were they thinking? Must have been the 60's......
By eric clapton and george harrison
Thinkin bout the times you drove in my car.
Thinkin that I might have drove you too far.
And I'm thinkin bout the love that you laid on my table.
I told you not to wander round in the dark.
I told you bout the swans, that they live in the park.
Then I told you bout our kid, now hes married to mabel.
Yes, I told you that the light goes up and down.
Don't you notice how the wheel goes round?
And you better pick yourself up from the ground
Before they bring the curtain down,
Yes, before they bring the curtain down.
Talkin' bout a girl that looks quite like you.
She didn't have the time to wait in the queue.
She cried away her life since she fell off the cradle.
Is it me or are there more kids running amok these days. No manners. No common courtesy. Could care less what they do and where they do it. It's almost like their parents never tried to instill any civility in them or gave up trying.
Parenting is a job. It's not a nine to fiver. It's 24/7. My dad would often say, "A job half done is a job just begun." From where I sit, there's a lot of parents out there who threw up their hands because being a parent was too tough for them and consequently left that job half done. There's a lot of people out there who should have never had kids in the first place.
It's surprising how many kids that I've known have landed in jail. Well, not really surprising. Most I would have guessed that somehow, sometime and somewhere they'd be behind bars. When you've worked with a lot of kids for any length of time it's fairly easy to predict. There are three former students in our downtown slammer today all of which I could have easily predicted that that's where they would most likely have ended up. I hate being right when it comes to predictions like these.
Parents who are pain in the asses often end up in the slammer, too. There's two that I remember as being real jerks that are in the Cowtown jail today. One's there having been nailed for crafting a Ponzi scheme. Another is behind bars for embezzlement. Wonder if their parents left the job of parenting half done and allowed these two to run amok.
Run amok.....hmmm. I could open a camp for kids and name it Camp Run Amok. Our slogan: Walk softly and carry a big stick: We make winners out of losers.
Wanna be a camp counselor?
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Do you happen to be or is your loved one a Tranny? Have you ever been flushed? Summer is the time to flush your tranny or so says the A-1 Auto people in Yreka. I bet they even do straight flushes, too.
Pulled the trailer home from Yreka this morning. Yup. A/C unit won't function in hot weather. Why fight 100 plus degree temps with no a/c?
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Laroo in yesterday's comments made the suggestion to bake cookies on the dashboard of the truck. Anything like that is possible in 110 degree heat. So today we're doing just that. It's the perfect activity for Gracie and the friend that's coming over to play this afternoon.
Cowtown ended up with a high of 112 yesterday afternoon. At 4 p.m. it was 114 at the lake. . . . definitely not a time to be sailing. We probably could have baked cookies on the poop deck.
Today promises to be a a bit cooler if you call 109 chilly. Yup. 109.
Lunch today with an attorney friend. But before that I'll hit the lake to check out the boat and its mooring lines. The office computer is being returned at 1:30. Late today I'll drive north to spend the night in the RV to make an 8:00 a.m. appointment on Wednesday for repairs. When that's done I'll drive home trailer in tow.
Busy day. Busy tomorrow.
BTW: I hate answering the telephone. I also hate stupid answering machine messages. To shake up a bit what's on our machine I've been recording "interesting" greetings. Here's our latest greeting. Feel free to copy and use it.
Hello, you've reached Bob and Candace. We can't pick up the phone right now, because we're doing something we really enjoy. Candace likes doing it up and down, and I like doing it left to right... real slowly. So leave a message and when we're done brushing our teeth we'll get back to you.
Monday, July 27, 2009
I've always contended and noted here that shit happens in bunches of punches. The second contention of mine is that the more you have the more wheels there are to grease. Like now:
RV camping this weekend the circuit breaker on the a/c kept shutting off. Either there's a short in the a/c or the circuit breaker needs replacing. Repairs are scheduled for Wednesday. This repair will likely run in the 100 bucks plus category.
While RV camping Zeenie started shaking her head . . . like all the time. Once home yesterday a visit to the vet revealed that she had a yeast infection (of all things) in her ear. $124 bucks. And I thought yeast infections only occurred . . . .
The office PC took a dump Wednesday. It's still in the shop with an ETA of late today or tomorrow. I'm thinking another 100 bucks plus expense.
The laptop I'm using is beginning to slow down. So I did: Virus check. Spybot check. Disk check. Memory dump. It's still running slow...slow...slow.
On a brighter side, son Max arrives from Seoul at the San Francisco airport this afternoon for a three week visit. He'll make the trip to Cowtown later this week once he's had a chance to visit/party with his buds in the Bay area. Grace is so very excited to see her Uncle Max. That's all she's been talking about.
Anything else needing grease? Here's hoping we done greased everything up for the time being.
Friday, July 24, 2009
I'm headed north to go under cover this weekend. I've got a couple of spare bags packed so I should be okay if it rains. Nothing like a soggy bag on your head.
When I'm doing deep cover people often ask who I am and what I'm doing with a bag over my head.
Wifey speaks for me and says that I'm a famous movie star who doesn't want to be recognized. If I said something it would give away my deep cover. So I keep quiet. Wifey usually adds that under the bag is a star who appeared in a lot of movies. That keeps everyone guessing.
Sometimes people think I'm like from a terrorist group checking out places to terrorize. When that happens I pull out a long string of fire crackers, wrap those babies around my neck about four times and in a very loud voice I ask, "Anyone gotta light?"
When I'm in deep cover bartenders usually serve up free drinks just to see if I can down them without getting my bag wet. That's when a long straw comes in handy.
It's soooo cool hitting the bars with a bag on your head because no one can tell when you're over the top stupid drunk. Once while driving home a cop stopped me and wanted to check my eyes out. "Check the peep holes, officer. I'm not getting unbagged for you!"
There's fun to be had up north!
Thursday, July 23, 2009
The office computer crashed again. It's in the "shop". Until it comes back home (probably sometime next week) posts will be limited to pretty much what you see here. Short. To the point.
Another crash . . . It's not me or what I do with this thing but in the repair work and the parts used for repair.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
We were up early Sunday knowing the winds on the lake were going to be decent. By 7:15 the boat was rigged and ready to sail out of the marina. Michael, an old salt who works at the marina yelled out as we motored out, "Only use one sail today. It's gonna blow and one sail will be good enough. Yesterday it really blew and it's gonna do the same today."
We blinked and looked at each other. One sail? It can never blow enough for one sail. Gotta have two. Always.
Once on the water I fired up the outboard, pointed the boat into the wind and handed the helm over to Wifey so that I could raise the mainsail. Once raised I took the helm, shut off the motor, tilted it up out of the water and started catching wind in the mainsail.
Crap, I thought. Might as well raise the furling jib, too. The jib is attached to the boat much like a window shade. No fuss. No muss. Just pull one of the lines and it unravels. If you wan to retract the jib pull on another line and it ravels up.
So I raised the jib and pointed the boat as high into the wind as she would go to maximize speed. Well, had I left the jib up we could have put the rails in the water. It was blowing. There were white caps. And there was too much wind to sail comfortably with both sails up. I quickly pulled in the jib.
Putting the rails in the water defined: On either side of the boat there are life lines and rails to hold these lines. Putting the rails in the water means that the boat is heeled so very far over that the rails on one side of the boat are hitting the water. That's a lot of heel for if you're sitting down you'll be standing up whether you want to or not.
It turned out to be a great day for sailing from early morning to early afternoon. When the wind died down the sails came down and we motored into the marina. If you're a sailor on a fresh water lake, you also know that when there's no wind that's when the power boats come out.
One woman at the helm of one power boat towing a kid on a tube nearly ran us over as she was paying more attention to the kid and not a lot to where she was going. Two people in kayaks cut in front of the boat was we were entering the marina causing me to put the boat in reverse and turn to avoid hitting them. The masses were out in force and it was definitely time to call it a day.
Once on the dock we found that it was just over 100 degrees. Securing the boat took about a half hour's sweat then it was home to an air conditioned home to let the dogs out who had been confined for well over five hours.
Are you getting tired of Wifey and Bob at the helm pictures? Get used to them because there will be lots before this season is over. Here are two taken Sunday when the wind had died down.
On this day I taught Wifey how to come about and how to jibe (plain terms - change direction) . . . something she'd been longing to do. There is some skill and knowledge required to perform this task. Do it the wrong way and you'll tear up the equipment or possibily hurt someone on board.
Wifey was a good student and did both maneuvers well. It's a good idea for her to know how to do these things. If I fell off of the boat as has nearly happened a couple of times (unexpected waves hit the boat causing it to rock and me to lose balance) Wifey definitely needs to know how to pluck me out of the water. It wouldn't be a good thing to leave Bob in the middle of the lake while Wifey sailed off into the sunset.
We'll sail through November and into December before hauling the boat for winter. Once out of the water the hull will be cleaned, repairs made, some rigging replaced and the outboard serviced. She'll go back in the water come March/April all depending on the weather.
Sailing. . . damn it's a lot of fun!
Monday, July 20, 2009
Saturday, July 18, 2009
It was a cooker yesterday. You could have fried an egg anywhere outside. It was that hot. If there is good news it is the relative humidity which in the summer out our way it's always close to single digits.
Even at that when it gets over 105 or so everyone hunkers down inside. Recently I read that walking around on very hot days the body sweats between 28 to 32 ounces of fluid an hour. That seems like an awful lot to me. But it also serves to justify drinking a lot of liquids.
I'll take another Bud, please. Gotta stay hydrated, don't ya know...
Grace has found a place on the sailboat that is hers. It's the bow hatch that is accessible through the v-berth.
She's learned that it's easier to look out of the hatch by putting her feet on the teak rails than it is to stand on her tippy toes.
Necessity is still the mother of invention.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
They're predicting triple digit temps in Cowtown and on the lake for the next couple of weeks. High temps translates into little or no wind and much too hot to be on the lake in a sailboat. Or on any other boat unless you're in the water.
Here's our baby moored at the marina. She's the boat right by the woman and man on the dock. If you click on the picture you'll see that the guy is checking out our boat. She's one of the largest, cleanest, most well equipped sailboat on the lake and worth the time to check out.
I check on her every couple of days or so. See that the lines are tight and secure. Clean off the bird poop off of the poop deck (now you know what it's called that . . . perfect place for birds to poop and they do). Go below. If it's not too hot read or crank up the boat's stereo system. Talk to other sailors who have come to check on their boats. There's always something to do, see or talk with.
The boat is moored in 38 feet of water. She draws, according to her specs, 3 1/2 feet but I suspect it's closer to a little over 4 and probably 5. Surprisingly, the lake in certain areas is but 8 feet deep . .. and that's in the middle of the lake! In other areas it is as deep as 100 feet or more.
I figure that if it gets too shallow the boat will come to a screeching halt and I'll have to figure out how to free her from whatever she's gone aground on. No big deal. Pop another beer. Stand at the helm, scan the horizon like I know what I'm doing and act like I go aground all the time.
It's a man thing. Kind of like getting lost in the big city and knowing that you don't need no fucking road map and no need to ask anyone for directions in order to find your way. I love it when that happens.
Nothing like boiling testosterone to bring Bob man bliss. Grrrrrrr.....
It's early. Time to shower. Shave. Eat a heaping bowl of oatmeal like a good boy. And then head out to the lake.
It's gonna be another great day in Cowtown.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
I sit here thinking. . . what to write? What to write?
Nothing. I got nothin'. It's just one of those days where brain farts and writer's block have taken over Bob's mind.
There's nothing on my mind.......Except this. Grace loves to read parts of the newspaper especially the comics. She's doing just that in this photo.
And this: Wifey and Grace are at the local library. The firefighter who saved the little bear cub during last summer's blaze is there speaking about "Smokey".
I'm going back to being mindless now.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Meet Gracie's voice teacher, Jimmy. Most everyone in Cowtown knows Jimmy. Either their kids have had voice lessons from him, or they've listened to Jimmy play and sing at a local piano bar or they had Jimmy lead them in less than sober karaoke at one of our pubs. Jimmy gets around.
Grace is learning how to yodel, sing the scale, read music, adjust the volume of her voice (low to high) and can already belt out a Disney song or two.
In preparing her for the next weekly lesson (on Tuesdays) Wifey helps Grace practice singing every day of the week. Sometimes she practices in the garage, or in her bedroom, outside on the patio, while riding in the car or in the family room.
No one else in the family seems interested enough to see that Grace practices her singing let alone pay for the lessons. We do both of these because it's in our grandparent job description. Besides, taking singing lessons is something Grace asked to do. Someone had to take this on.
Like doing anything else at this age, who knows where her voice lessons will take Gracie if she continues on this path. Jimmy has high hopes for Grace as he feels she is talented. That aside we just want a well rounded kid who knows a little about everything.
Knowing a little about everything will allow for choices when she's older.
Monday, July 13, 2009
I love being 39. It happened again yesterday. Being 39 means being ageless. You don't get older. You just get better. Why screw around with perfection?
Grace with with us on my 39th which is unusual for a Sunday. She always spends weekends with her mom or with her dad. But something came up and Gracie landed with us at about five yesterday.
We had dinner out. It was a nice place, fairly new with lots of positive critic reviews.
There's always something for our girl to learn when we have dinner out. She's six years old and still learning the fine art of dining with manners and graciousness. This time out Gracie learned that you don't wipe your bread on the plate of butter but using a butter knife instead puts you apart from some of the other Cowtown diners .
The birthday boy had meatloaf. Wifey dined on halibut. Grace chose sirloin tips.
Our server sensed it was Bob's birthday and asked how old I was. Eighty-five I replied. Don't feel a day over 39 though.
Once home there was Baskin and Robbins ice cream cake.
I wanted Grace to kill the cake for me. Take the knife I said, and put that cake out of its misery. Grrrrrr.
Gracie put on her gameface and tried her best to kill the cake.
At this point I thought she really was going to do it. She seemed ready. Grrrrr, she said, knife in hand. Grrr.
Then we started laughing. It was time to eat the 39th birthday cake. Another year has bitten the dust. I can hardly wait until my next 39th birthday.
Saturday, July 11, 2009
Even if you didn't think much about MJ, here's a tribute worth watching . . . moonwalk videos from all over the world in creating what's is being called the Eternal Moonwalk.
Entertaining. At times funny. Weird.
You too can contribute as recording of the Eternal Moonwalk video is ongoing.
Check it out.
Last weekend. Fourth of July in Yreka. Locals held their annual parade.
It didn't take long for the parade. 15 minutes max.
There were five types of entries.
One: Renovated military vehicles as you see here. Didn't really appreciate a patriot pointing a 50 caliber machine gun in my direction. First Golden Rule of firearms is to never point one at anybody regardless of what they can or can't do. . . unless you intend to use it. And maybe that was what was on this old fart's mind....
One float: This is the local McDonald's "float". Need I say more?
#3 The locals who race each weekend at the Yreka speedway had a half dozen cars in the parade. Kids and adults hung out of every window.
At one point two of the cars lined up alongside of each other and raced close to full speed down the parade route, kids hanging out of each open window. Had one lost control and headed toward spectators . . . .or if one of the kids in the cars fell out?
#4 Every fire truck in town was in the parade. Sirens. Lights. The whole 9 yards.
#5 Semi Trucks: Ending the parade was this beauty. It's horn was much like that of a train locomotive. Loud. Very loud.
Start to finish within 15 minutes the parade was over. I was hoping Peggy Lee was in the last vehicle, microphone in hand and singing her hit song, "Is That All There Is?" It would have been a most appropriate ending to the parade.
Wifey and walked back to the car smiling knowing that the parade albeit short, hokey and missing a lot of what parades are all about (like marching bands, kids pulling wagons, mounted color guards . .. .) was our kind of fourth of July fun. Small town, all American, apple pie.
Friday, July 10, 2009
There's a four speaker music system on the boat. Two in the cabin. Two in the cockpit. Lots of juice to run each of them. Quality sound.
On the lake - - - Yesterday plugged the Ipod into the system. Gimme Shelter comes on. I crank up the system. Wifey puts a scarf on her head and sings "oooh, ooooh.." and I put on my best Mick Jagger . . . prancing, dancing, skipping (not an easy thing) bow to stern.
Gracie stares in disbelief. Others passing us by on the lake most likely think, "There's a couple of escapees from the nut house dancing on a sailboat."
For a brief moment I'm Mick Jagger sailing the high seas and I could give a damn what others think.
Now if I could just figure out how to get this straight jacket off. . . .
It was a morning that promised good sailing. Cool. Slight breeze turning in a brisk wind. A kid who could not wait to skipper the boat.
We packed our lunch, filled the cooler with drinks and headed for the lake. Less than an hour later we were on the water.
Grace just had to wear the captain's hat.
I sat in one of the "cat bird" seats to coach Grace as she steered the boat.
Wifey did a little coaching, too.
While the ladies had their lunch in the cabin I took the helm and looked for windier conditions on the lake.
While I scanned the horizon the words of Capt Ahab came to mind: "Aye, my hearties all. It was Moby-Dick that dismantled me, that reaped off my leg like a mower a blade of grass and left me with this dead stump I stand on. For forever and a day I shall chase that white whale."
This is not a bad picture of Bob. I'm looking very stoic. Very studly. Perfect material to send in to be considered for next month's AARP centerfold.
The old ladies reading next month's AARP magazine will most certainly ooohhhh and awe. Hope they put the staples in the right place.
Thursday, July 09, 2009
An acquaintance and I had this conversation the other day:
Him: You write a lot about your Wifey, don't you.
Me: I wouldn't say that I write a lot about her but yes, I do write about her.
Him: She's not the only Wifey. There's another one.
Me: Ya think? I really didn't think I had the only Wifey.
Him: Yup. And she has her own web site plumb fulled of nekked pictures. You should post pictures of your Wifey and make some money.
Me: Well, that really wouldn't be like my Wifey to post nekked pictures of herself on the Internet. She's a private person. That's not her thing.
So I Googled Wifey. Perez Hilton of all people has a Wifey. Yuck. There are other Wifey's on the net. One has a blog entitled Ask Wifey. Ashton Kutcher mentions his Wifey on Twitter.
Wikipedia has this to say about Wifey:
Usenet newsgroups in 1997 with her eyes hidden. Surprised by the favorable response, the couple continued to post steadily more explicit images. By fall of 1997, they were doing "brisk" mail-order business of their home videos. In the fall of 1998, they launched the website."
Posted here are several photos of the other Wifey from Wifey World (that's a hellofa name isn't it - sounds like the name of an adult amusement park).
Hmm . . . not bad for a 44 year old website porno star. Wifey's boobs are yet another example of "How much is enough?"
This last picture taken in Wifey's kitchen? Nice roast, eh? Just the way I like 'em.
Wednesday, July 08, 2009
Taken off the docks where the boat is moored. Early morning fishing for this bird of a feather.
It's so peaceful this time of day. Birds doing bird sounds. Fish jumping out of the water. The halyards on the sailboats beating against their masts in time with the puffs of wind.
Here's our boat, Sparkle Plenty. We've since moved her across the dock to where you see the Forverhouseboats.com patio boat moored.
Getting out of this mooring was a hassle. The new location is a straight shot out onto the lake. It is much easier for single handed sailing.
AND ANOTHER THING!
So another thing about Michael Jackson. Didn't you think the mourning of the Jackson family was probably a couple of parts remorse?
Think about it. Common knowledge had it that MJ was heavy into prescription drugs. It's also common knowledge that MJ rarely had contact with his brothers and his mom. You just have to think there was regret mixed in with the other feelings . . . that the family should have had more contact with MJ . . . and just maybe he'd still be alive today. Just maybe.
Given the knowledge that MJ was drugged out on prescription drugs most families would have done an intervention to put a halt to the addiction. You and I would have done that for a family member. But then, the Jackson's are not most families, are they . .. .
Had the Jackson family intervened the gloved on would still be alive, kicking, moon walking and getting ready for bunch of concerts in London.
Tuesday, July 07, 2009
Here's a home located in Yreka. It's older. It's well cared for. It's obvious that the owners think outside the box.
In keeping dogs, bad guys, people who go door-to-door preaching the gospel and vacuum cleaner salesmen away from their door there's a gate that is securely latched.
The gate makes the statement, I double dog dare you to go around me and knock on the door. If you do, there's trouble coming your way.
Or is there a force field around the house in lieu of a fence? Walk through the force field and you're fried. Kentucky fried.
I'll be glad when this deal over Michael Jackson is over. The media has gone gaa-gaa over the series of events before and after his death. This who deal comes under the heading of HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH?! Enough! Uncle. I give up. Stop it!!!
What's especially nauseating is having to put up with Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson who seem to be the darlings of the media. Why is that those two clowns come out of the woodwork on each and every event that involves black people?
Monday, July 06, 2009
Gracie had her friend Maya over last week for a little fun in the 108 degree sun.
Here you see the two young ladies holding a freshly picked Kumquat from one of our fruit trees. Zeenie is looking to put her ball in the wadding pool once it was filled. It's her favorite sport to fish the ball out of the pool.
The girls had snacks on the backyard patio. They talked. And talked. And talked. They had a lot of catching up to do.
And then they ate. And ate. And ate. There's not an ounce of fat on either of them.....Maya and Grace definitely burn off whatever they eat as well they should being but six years old and growing like little weeds.
I marveled at the two. So active. So full of life. Happy.
Isn't that what life is all about?
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