Saturday, October 31, 2009

Senior Citizen Perfect

Every drive behind one of our grey headed citizens and their turn signal indicates that they're turning right and then they swing a left?  This is not withstanding of those who unconsciously drive with their turn signal flashing when they have no intention of turning . . . that's a story for another time.

Yesterday I get a letter from Chrysler regarding my Dodge Ram 3500 truck.  It reads:  "We are extending the warranty period on your truck's turn signal multifunction because of a potential manufacturing process variation that may cause the turn sign, both interior and exterior, to flash in the opposite direction from that selected by the operator."

This is so awesome!  Bob's never going to get this malfunction repaired should it occur on his truck.  Think of it as an exercise for the brain.  The older you get the more it's beneficial to exercise the brain.  I'll need to think with every turn.  Now there's a new concept:  Think before you turn.  Really think reverse of what should be.  Turning right flip the signal level down.   Turning left flip the signal level up.  Everything in reverse. 

If I'm pulled over for not using turn signals I have the perfect excuse.  Pull out the recall letter.  Read the fine print, officer.  I'll get it fixed next week.  The perfect get out of a ticket card.

It's hard to believe that Chrysler had a manufacturing screw up like this.  Was it in engineering this signal system or in the manfacturing of it?  No one wants to fess up on who or why.

Anyway, it was worth a laugh . . . and a sign of misbelief that once again an American automobile manufacturer has screwed up once more.

Blech.  Today's Halloween.  One of my least favorite holidays of the year.  Bah Hum-boo!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Head Ranger?

A fellow in uniform approached me on the dock yesterday.  I was busy scrubbing Sparkle Plenty's rich in algae bottom but I took time to stop for a moment to introduce myself.  This guy in uniform said he was the Head Ranger for the Whiskeytown National Park. Hmmm.   Head Ranger,  What the hell kind of a title is that.  What's his job description say about being Head Ranger?  What exactly does this guy do?  My mind started whirling.

Never short of an imagination a million Bob definitions of this guy's job title came to mind as I watched the Head Ranger stroll back down the dock to his green and white Parks Service SUV.

Head Ranger #1:  "Hi, I'm the Head Ranger and I'm checking for heads.  I see that you're entering the park with no head.  Sorry.  No headless people are allowed in the park.  Come back with a head and I'll let you in."

Head Ranger #2:  "Hello, I'm the Head Ranger here to make certain that all of the heads in the park are on the range and working.  Can't have any heads that are covered in poop and pee.  Got to be clean, smelling and looking good with lots of t-p in them."

Head Ranger #3:  "Hi there.  I see you're sitting alone in your car.  I thought for a moment that there was a woman with her head in your lap.  I know what that means.  That's a definite no-no.   Can't be having no head in the park.  None.  Zero.  Nada.  Zilch.  No head."

Head Ranger #4:  "Hey there.  I'm the Head Ranger.  This means I'm top dog, leader of the pack, honcho numero one, the lead guy, the go to person, where the buck stops, also known as Ass Hole to many.  What can I do you for?"

Head Ranger #5:  "Yo, Dude.  Let me check your beer.  I'm the Head Ranger and I'm here to make certain that every beer has a good head on it.  Let me shake up that can of beer you're going to open next.  That will put a big head on this next puppy.     You'll be getting real big head on your next brewski.  Here . . .this Bud's for you, Dude!"

I'll have to run each of these scenarios by the Head Ranger when next we meet.  It would be great to know what kind of a Head Ranger this guy is.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What are you supposed to be?

I don't particullary like Halloween.  It's defintely not the favorite holiday.  Halloween, in my opinion, is for kids.  Adults dressing up in costume, some going door-to-door for candy, doesn't cut it.  It's like grow up, people.  Grow up.

Okay, okay, give me a ration of shit about my thinking.  Do I care?  Nope.  Do I want to hear your grief that I'm wrong?  Nope again.   So don't even think about posting your rationale on why it's okay for adults to act like kids on Halloween because I'm not buying any of it.   If you want to dress up  and be a kid every October 31st that's you're deal.  You have to live with yourself and I don't.  

For some adults Halloween is like year round:  They're always in costume.  I often want to approach a person wearing strange garb and say, "What are yuo supposed to be?"  Of course they'll say, "Huh?  What do you mean what am I supposed to be?"

LIke these people begging on the streets, holding signs, looking forlorn and forgotten, dressed in all sorts of clothing . . . that's really when I want to ask, "What are you supposed to be?"  I really want to say, get a fucking job, you idiots!  There's work out there.  It may take some effort to find work but get a fucking job, you idiots!  No sympathy.  And you're not getting a nickle from Bob.  Why hand out hard earned money to those who are too lazy to find work let alone punch in from 8 to 5.

There's one guy who doesn't have a job that I often see that I'd like to comment on.  I drive 10 miles to the marina and then 10 miles back home every other day.  Alongside the road, sitting on the ground and against a mile marker is this one guy.  The dude is always there.  He's holding a small sign that's nearly impossible to read as you pass at 60 miles an hour.  He's usually asleep.

I want to stop and talk to him.  "What are you supposed to be?",  I'd ask.   But I'd really stop to read what the hell it is on his sign that I can't read at 60 miles an hour.  I'd say, "Man, sitting here is all about marketing.  You got to get a better sign.  One we can al read as we approach you at 60 miles an hour.  How the hell do you expect anyone to stop?  Market yourself dude, market yourself."  But I' really say, "Get a fucking job, you idiot!  Wasting your life away alongside a highway is like nowhere, dude!"

Dude?  That brings up another thought.  When you're greeted at a checkout counter in a store what does the clerk call you?  Most of the time it's "sir".  Once in a while it's "dude". That makes me smile.  I say back, "Duuuude!" to the clerk.    If I'm with Wifey we're often greeted as being "you guys".  "How are you guys today?"  Wifey takes offense to that.  She defintely feels that she is not in the guy category.  She usually comes back with, "You guys?  I'm not a guy." 

Enough of Bob's thoughts on life.  Happy Tuesday.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Done Got Fixed

I hired an auto mechanic to repair/adjust the boat's steering.  James, the mechanic, showed up at the dock at 2 on Sunday and promptly went to work.  I had e-mailed him photos and information on what had to be done so there was no doubt in his mind where to start and how to finish the job.

It was a great day to be at the marina.  October weather, slight breeze, close to 80 degrees.  Sometimes it is great to live in California and by gawd yesterday was one of those times.

James had to lay on his back to access the bulkhead to make the repairs.  There is a 4 inch high lip at the entrance of the bulkhead that James had to lie on in order to reach the steering.   Not good.

After 90 minutes work the job was done.   I was happy.  James was well compensated and he was happy. 

We'll sail later today in checking the steering along with other adjustments that have been made to the sails.

BTW:  We encountered a storm on the lake several weeks ago that took us by surprise as noted in a previous post here (see October 4th).   We had heard that a 22' Catalina had sunk during this storm in addition to several others which had capsized.  That story was verified on the dock yesterday when we spoke to a fellow sailor who had witnessed the boat going down.

The boat that sunk had a swing keel meaning that it can be lowered and retracted depending on the situation.  The fellow sailor and I surmised that the skipper likely had forgotten to lower the keel.  With no weight where it's needed there's no stability.  Because it lacked stability it was likely tha the boat capsized in the strong winds, filled with water and went to the bottom.

Whiskeytown Lake often yields more wind than many sailors can handle.  The loss of this sailboat is a good example of  just that.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Why Me?

It's all well and good to buy used goods.  They say why buy new and eat the depreciation when you can buy used and get a deal.  I say, why is it no matter how hard I try I get burned buying used.  There's always something wrong with used goods.

Take my most recent acquisition, Sparkle Plenty.   I shopped high and low for two years to find the perfect boat.  Then I noticed that the steering wasn't what it should be.  At first I thought it was Bob's sailing skills.  And then I thought it was the nature of this particular sailboat.  Then I saw that the rudder swung all the way to starboard (for you non-sailors that's to the right) and that it barely swung over to port.

So I e-mailed the company.  We've gone back and forth.  I've sent photos of the steering linkage (located in a bulkhead under the cockpit - accessible via the queen sized berth).  Here's the latest e-mail from the manufacturer of the wheel steering assembly:

Good Morning Bob,

Thank you for your photos! I think the first thing to do if you haven’t already done so is to witness the steering movement from down below while someone is turning the steering wheel hard over to hard over. I noticed that both take up eyes are installed opposite to the way we have them pictured in our bulletin. I’m not sure if the excess stud of the eye is impeding the travel or not. It should be obvious when you witness the rudder travel. Also, make sure that the stainless vertical pin that the take up eyes pass through is rotating when the wheel is turned.

I also noticed in one photo that the lock nut on the upper take up eye has backed off and should be secured. Also the 4 rope clamps that secure the steering cable should be installed with the curved side of the clamp against the dead end of the steering cable and the flat base with the studs protruding through it against the live side of the cable. It is a good idea to coat the exposed cable between the take up eyes and the white conduit end fittings with TEFLON (Super Lube) lubricant while turning the wheel hard over to hard over. Do NOT use a petroleum base grease. It will brake down the inside wall of the conduit.

Let me know your results. Thanks again Bob!

Ken Martin
Customer Service

Got my work cut out for me.

The nearest Catalina sailboat dealer is 250 miles south.  Sparkle Plenty is in the water and not an easy puppy to put on the trailer.  It would be a hassle and an expense to take her into a dealer so far away for a repair that seems relatively easy.

Well, easy for some.  Bob is not mechanically inclined.  What takes someone who is an hour to do a job like this would take Bob 6.  Not kidding.

Making this repair requires laying on the stomach or back or on your side . . . and looking up which puts strain on the neck.  Back in the day Bob was rear ended by a trolley car in San Francisco and came out of it with the mother of all whiplashes.  To this day to strain the neck is to cause major pain for days on end.

So what do I do?  If you guessed an auto mechanic who does mobile work you were correct.  I've got the directions as to what to do.   I've got the diagram of how the steering linkage should be connected.  All it takes is ability and strong neck muscles.   A mechanic and I are meeting at the boat this morning to make the repairs.  Taa daaa!

Back to why I hate buying used.  So what happened here that the boat's steering links are so screwed up.  I have no clue.  She's had like a couple of owners.  It's apparent there's been some repairs to the stern fiberglass.  For some reason it looks like the steering was repaired or replaced.  Repaired or replaced wrong.  This always happens when I buy used.  Always.

Why me?

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Shall We Squish Our Fruits Together?

A Nut Case for Playing Ball

Morning.  Noon.  Night.  This dog has to play ball.  Throw the ball and fetch.  Playing catch - - - I throw the ball and she throws or rolls it back. 

When it's time to hit the sack I'll say, "Zeenie, let's go to bed."  She'll run and jump up on whatever I'm sitting on, bark, jump back on the floor, spin around a couple of times, bark again then wait for me to head into the bedroom.  Zeenie leads the way and jumps onto the bed faithfully waiting for her ball to be served up.

What comes next is me in bed usually reading interspersed with playing catch, hiding the ball under the covers and hand wrestling with Zeenie.  This has become a ritual.  In younger days there were other rituals come bedtime which were kind of like playing catch and hiding under the covers.  

Okay, don't get the wrong idea.  One ritual has not been replaced with the other.  Let's just say they both have priority and occur all in due time. 

Zeen will be two come Saturday.  We'll have to set aside some extra time to throw the ball.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Neurotic pets?

Friday night marked the tenth anniversary of Rx Pets, the pet therapy group Wifey is a part of. She's been there from the beginning which made this celebration special.  Even more special Friday evening was the award of honorary member to Grace for her part in helping in the training of some of the dogs. Wifey was also honored for her ten years of service to the organization.

For those who don't know, pet therapy is not a program for neurotic pets but visitation to assisted care and hospital facilities by the animals.  Each pet and its owner in the program has to be trained in a certain manner and certified that they meet the criteria for visitations.  It's not an easy program to break into.  It just doesn't happen overnight.

Zooey and Zeenie are both certified as was our Jillie now deceased.  Zooey is aging and ailing and no longer perform visits.   It's best for her not to do that. 

Friday evening, as I well knew, was a night for talk, talk, talk about dogs.  I like dogs.  But I like talking about other things.

So here's Grace in the photo with her new Rx Pets polo shirt talking to our friend Lori.  Later in the evening Lori gave Grace one of her bracelets.  She's very fond of our girl.

Lori loves showing cleavage.  I should say something to her about that.  I really should.  It would go like this:

Me:  You're distracting me with your display of tits.  You're showing them off.  Why?

Lori would probably say, "Because I have them to show off, Bob!  And look at me and not my tits, will you!"  Well hell, it's the fashion so I might as well go with it.  I just have to learn when speaking to a cleavage display artist that I must  focus my eyes on the head and not on the breasts.

You see me in this picture. It pretty much displays my sentiment.   I'm tired.  Don't I looked tired?  My eyes are bloodshot.  Bob wants to talk anything but dogs but there's was no one interested in talking about anything else.  So Bob sits alone and enjoys not talking but instead thinks about going home to a nice warm bed. 

This would be the picture worth those thousand words.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Chasing the Dragon?

Steely Dan, an old favorite, plays in San Hoser tonight. $55 will get you a nose bleed seat. $238 bucks will put you in Donald Fagen's lap. Not. I'd love to be there. It's not the money standing in the way . . . it's the long, long drive in rush hour traffic to San Hoser. Brutal.

How many times have you listened to this song and heard "Right when I chased the dragon . . ."?

Chasing the dragon refers to smoking opium. Now you know. And now the song will take on a whole new meaning.

Racist Attitudes

This post was written yesterday.  I have no clue what my motivation was.  At one point in the day it felt right to delete what's written here.  I asked myself why it is that I reveal more and more about myself here.  Why?  But this morning it's another day and it seems like the right thing publish this.  For whatever it's worth here it is:

The title of this post got  your attention, didn't it....

Ever think about where racist attitudes originate?  It's an easy assignment:  In the home.  That's where most everything originates.  After all, children do learn what they live.  And live what they learn.

Take Bob for example.  Short story here.  Bob never knew his father.  Father split the sheets with mother before my birth.  Never met him.  Never saw him.  No contact which is probably all due to the wishes of my mother and not my father.

Six months after my second birthday Mother dated and married a soldier assigned to a Nebraska airbase.   The three of us moved to California.  When I entered school my stepfather's surname was entered as my last name on the enrollment papers.

 The relationship between stepfather and stepson was never a good one.   Never.   I was beaten with belts, hangars, sticks . . .anything the old man could get his hands on.  The old man wanted complete submission and obedience from Bob.  That's something he never got.

The last beating nearly came at age 15 when I told the old man that if he laid another hand on me that he'd get a fist coming back at him.  That was when stepfather shoved me through a closed window breaking all of its glass which fortunately did not inflict too many cuts on my body that were life threatening.  That was the end of the physical abuse.

Following my stint in the military I immediately enrolled in college and worked in stepfather's supermarket.  It wasn't long where the bad blood between the old man and I began to boil once again.  I was fired from the job and became estranged from the family all due to the wishes of stepfather.

During the estrangement one of my first thoughts was to lose the last name . . . a name that really wasn't mine to begin with as no formal proceedings were taken to change the birth name to stepfather's name.  It was then that I decided to assume my birth name.

Me:  I'm dropping the last name and taking on Watson.  That's how it should have been and that is how it's going to be.

Mom:  Why would you want to do that?  You don't really want to take on Watson, do you.  Mostly colored people have that last name.

Me:  So what?  That is so untrue and so very racist.  Lots of people of color and no color have the name Watson.

Mom:  Well, you wouldn't want to be associated with THEM would you?

Me:  If you're talking being associated with black people then hell yes.  If I had the choice I'd be black.  I hate being white.  Besides anything would be better than who I have been linked to this far.  Gee mom, how you can you say such a thing? 

Mom:  Because it's true. 

Me:  Watson is my real last name and that's how it's going to be.

And it was.

In the house that I grew up in there were more than a few racial slurs.  As I child when these words came from from mom's mouth of stepfather's I always thought how stupid and ignorant the two of them sounded.

Despite what I had heard in the home that there were always friends of color in my life during high school, in the military, college and later in life.  Once in a while one of the stupid racial things mom or stepfather used to say pops into my mind.  They just do.  I think to myself - where did that come from and then I remember all of the shit ass things my parents would say about people of color.   But the cool thing is I don't live that, subscribe to it nor has racist lingo or racist thinking been passed on to our kids or to our grandchild.  Simply put, we're breeding racism out of our family.

One day every family will be like that.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Around the World in Eight Months

Watson's are tough.  When going gets tough the Watson's get going.  Yup.  That's a fact, Jack!

This said, 16 year old Aussie Jessica Watson embarked yesterday on a solo, unassisted round the world trip in her 34' sailboat that should last eight months.  Solo.  Alone in her 34' yacht which is 9 feet longer than Bob's.  When you're sailing around the world size does matter.  If Jessica is successful she will be the youngest person ever to make this voyage.

What's worrisome is that she's attempting this feat without assistance.  What does that mean exactly? 

"Without assistance" means a vessel may not receive any kind of outside help or take on board any supplies, materials or equipment during the attempt. A craft may be anchored or beached during the attempt, but any repairs must be made without outside resources, materials or help.

This adds to an already difficult task which would be daunting to even the most experienced sailor.  Keep your eye on Jessica's progress.  Here's hoping yet another Watson accomplishes the nearly impossible.

The photo here was taken last Sunday by Robin in the course of her shooting many pictures of Grace, Wifey and Bob.  More photos to come.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


You could call it that.  It was just plain old blustery in Cowtown Tuesday.  Winds to 55mph.  Rain about 3 inches worth in town, 8 inches on the lake. 

The tree next door was one of the casualties of the storm.  She went down for the count.  City workers came and cleared everything to the edge of the owner's property - on the far side of the sidewalk and left the rest for him to clear.

We drove out to the lake twice, once morning once evening.  The morning check yielded dock lines that needed tightening.  They had been stretched by the constant up and down bobbing.  Several boats had broken loose.  A couple were swamped.  Morning rain was driven sideways by the 55mph wind and stung any part of the body exposed to the elements.  It was really something.  Blustery.  Violent.  Both of those.

I drove home soaked to the bone thinking that an investment in foul weather gear was a must.  A half pint of water could have been squeezed from the jeans I had been wearing.  When I walked water squirted from my New Balance sports shoes.  Bob was indeed saturated. 

It really was no bother being so very wey.  What's a little water?  Actually it was kind of fun.  It took me back to the days when I walked that mile or more home from school.   Leaving school I was a dry kid but once home I needed to be hung up and drip dried.

I like being out of doors.  A job outside would definitely be to my liking.  I hear the Mexican drug cartel is hiring people to work outside either as cultivators or hit men.  You get to wear a sidearm and sometimes carry an AK-47, too.  That's right up Bob's alley.

Working with plants for the Mexicans might be my thing.  I'd use leaves off of the plants for my famous spaghetti sauce.  It would have to have a new name.  Instead of Bob's Christmas Pasta a name like Bob's Maui Wowee Red and Green Sauce Pasta would be definitely more fitting. 

I'd prepare the new recipe to my fellow workers.  After dinner my new friends would probably want to get out a pinata and be festive after dinner.  We could play shoot the tail off the donkey.  Or maybe my worker friends would just want to crawl around on all fours and howl at the moon. 

Damn, that sounds like a lot of fun.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A Girl Gots to Do What A Girl Gots to Do

It's raining.  The wind is beginning to blow.  Fall has finally come to Cowtown.  Wifey and I were up at 4:30 just to check it out.  It's been since March or April that we've had a storm this size and it feels good.

Checked on the boat last night just before dark.  Furled up the American flag that hung from a pole on the stern all summer.  Didn't want it ripped to shreds in the 60 mph winds that are supposed to blow today.  Tied all of the dock lines tight to eliminate major bobbing.  Major up and down bobbing plays hell with the cleats mounted on a boat.  Best to eliminate that play.

Here's Grace and Wifey.  Wifey had brought Grace's bike to the bus stop so that she could ride it home.  They're doing what they always do when they're together.  Talk.  Look.  Check things out.  Like you see here.  Check out Wifey's mouth open awe of whatever it is they're looking at.

Our girls do what girls should do.  Enjoy themselves and the company that they give to each other.

Monday, October 12, 2009


There's a storm headed our way.  Rain.  Lots of it coming down starting around 2 or 3 Tuesday morning. Wind.  Gusts up to 55/60 mph with steady winds exceeding 35 mph.  We've buttoned the boat up, tied her down.  She should be okay to weather the storm although I'll drive to the lake to check her a couple of times over the next few days to make certain of that.

This will mark our first storm of the season.  The soil is parched.  The creeks are dry.  The lakes are below average.  It's time. 

Photo shoot went well yesterday.  I wish that I had taken pictures of our photographer taking pictures.  Afterward it was dinner out.  Italian.  Wifey had breast of chicken.  Bob had Laaa Sag Kneee.  The latter was terrible.  The owner, who we know well, visited our table and saw what I had ordered.  He said, "I never eat that.  It's terrible.  It's the previous owners recipe and I'm going to take it off the menu or modify it."   Me:  No kidding.

The owner/chef offered to replace my place of lasagne and prepare something else.  I declined having already lost my appetite.  Like any gracious host he took my meal off of the check.  Whata guy.  That's why we just love eating at his place.  He's such a stand up person. And everything except the lasagna is pretty damn tasty.

Off to put things away on the patio.  Better to pick them up now than to chase them down once the wind starts howling.

Monday, Monday............

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Do ya? Huh, do ya? Ya got afros in ya?

Early For Thanksgiving Dinner

Check it out.  Turkey on a pickup that's parked at the lake marina.  Check out the bent antenna.  What you can't see are the scratches on the hood all thanks to this turkey and it's sharp claws.

The bird makes the habit of sitting on cars or trucks parked under this tree.  Every day.  Loves the shade.  Loves the protection.  Loves being off the ground and on a flat surface.  The bird will not go away.  It's been tried.

People who don't frequent the marina think this is cute until the bird parks on their vehicle.  Scratches.  Turkey poop.   You'd think the Parks Service would do something.  

I see but one option:  A Thanksgiving turkey dinner in October.    I'll shoot if if you pluck the feathers and pick out the buckshot.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Everything Runs Through It


A river runs through it.

An interstate runs through it.

Train tracks also run through it.

One of the cool things about living here is having to stop for passing trains.  Here I sit Thursday waiting for a mile long north bound freight train to pass through this intersection.  During a busy day it's nice to be forced to stop and smell - -- depending on your outlook on life- - -  the flowers or the diesel exhaust spewed by the engines of the freight train. 

A shitload of trains pass through Cowtown every hour of the day or night.  There's never any shortage.  Take for example Amtrak.  One Amtrak passenger train going south at 2:30 a.m..  One Amtrak passenger train going north at 3:30 a.m.  You gotta be an early bird to want to ride Amtrak.

It's another warm day with temps hitting 80.  It's 49 at the lake as I write this.  I'm just waiting for a bit more warmth before heading that way.  It's boat repair day.  Always something needing fixing. 

Sunday is picture day with Robin, our professional photographer.  She'll be on the dock at 4 for our annual photo shoot.  Once again Wifey, Grace and yours truly will be Robin's subjects.  One of the photos will be used on our Christmas cards. 

This will be the seventh year that Robin has photographed the three of us.  We time the "shoot" with Grace's birthday.  It's nice to have a record of what she looked like every year at this time.  And I guess it's good to see what we looked like for each of the seven years.  It's expensive but as I look back at six years of pictures it's easy to see that it was well worth it.

After all, it was the way we were..........

Friday, October 09, 2009

Sobriety Test

Next time you're pulled over and told to exhale into a tube play this tune on it and dance around the cop.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

More For Beer Than For Grub

Last night's spaghetti dinner with Michael the marina worker:  $10.50 for two dinners.  $22.50 for beer makes for a good evening.   That's what I'm talking about.  When you spend more $$ for grub than for beer there's a problem, people.

It was a nice evening.  Lots of sailing talk (Mike sails, too).   Talk about how screwed up this generation is compared to ours (our moms and dad thought our generation was so screwed compared to theirs, too).   More talk about why America can never win a war - we just piddle around and approach war half ass.  Some talk about his job at the marina.

Mike's old lady has not laid him for quite some time and his eyes wondered all evening at the few good looking women in the pub who had teeth.   He asked our waitress about the tattoo just above her breast - - -if it was a recent addition.  It wasn't.  The waitress lamented that the colors on the tattoo were fading and that she wanted an artist to color it again but this time with the new vibrant colors that were not available back in the day. 

I wanted to tell Mike to spend less time with his eyes on the chests of the women in the pub and more somewhere else.  But I let him wonder with his eyes without comment.  It was like he had not been out of the house for some time and was amazed at what he found in the "candy store" of life.

Mike's a nice guy.  Retired but still working a bit at the marina (it's seasonal and his time there has been cut off until Memorial Day).  Mike hasn't got a pot to piss in all due to poor retirement planning.  He'd like to do more with his time but can't afford it.  This talk made me feel all the more thankful that Wifey and I had a plan that would yield a great income later in life.

Bob's Advice:  Give up dollars today that are dedicated for a retirement account albeit uncomfortable financially.  If you don't you'll be even more uncomfortable in your 60's, 70's and 80's.  Unless you want to work until you're 80 and on your last legs.  You don't, do you?

Work on that pot to piss in for your golden years.  Today.  You'll never regret it.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

We've all been there

Why oh why do they make it so damn hard to open packages like these? WHY?

Look!  No Teeth!

Tonight I'm taking one of the marina workers to dinner.  He's been so helpful throughout the summer that I wanted to express my thanks.  We'll have a couple of beers, a green salad and where we're dining it's spaghetti night.  Been there.  Ate that.  And I'm going back for more tonight.

There's another marina worker that I'll also take to dinner only he has a unique problem.  He's lost all of us upper teeth all due to his former Meth habit.  Don't you think that's God's way of saying that Meth is not a good thing?  And if you want to do it here's what will happen.  Look!  No Teeth!

So what can a guy with no teeth eat?  Maybe I'll find a restaurant where they can like put a steak or a fish in a blender for this guy.  If you can't chew then drink it.  

How would you like your steak? 

In a blender.

Can I get blender fries with that?

Tuesday, October 06, 2009


This isn't sailing. It's rocket science. Makes my 25 footer look like child's play.


Monday, October 05, 2009

Bob is asked to write a screen play

I've been asked to write a screen play not based on a book but on an idea.  The title of the film will be The Wind Talkers.  I know, I know.  There's already a film out with that title.  I don't ask questions.  I just do the writing.  The money is good so why ask questions.  These boys from Hollywood know what they're doing.

So, what's the plot?  The film will be about a colony of people who were born without vocal chords.  They communicate quite adquately with one other by means of flatulence.  Yes, that's quite right.

Men and women in the colony are so adept at flatulence that they have formed several musical groups. Members of the colony can break wind continuously at will so as to produce the effect of singing.  The film will be not only drama based but a musical, too.

They Call the Wind Mariah.  Blowing in the Wind.  The Wind Cries Mary. The Wayward Wind.   Four Strong Winds (a quartet rendering).  Dust in the Wind.  What's That Smell.  These are a few of the songs to be included in the film

I'm being flown by the producers of the film to spend time in the colony as part of the process of gathering information before I commence writing The Wind Talkers.

I think I see an Oscar in Bob's future.

Anything You Want - Jason Mraz

Yesterday - Farm Aid.

Dynamo of Volition - Jason Mraz

Yesterday - performed at Farm Aid.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Being prepared is just not for Boy Scouts

Saturday - another day lake sailing. Little did we know that behind Candace in this photo is a weather cell that packed 40mph winds and sleet. It looked just like a little rain was coming our way. When it hit us the wind took a sudden 90 degree change in direction spinning the boat around in the opposite direction. 

Cold, wet with sleet and wind blown we hauled the sails down and tried to motor back to the marina. The wind was so strong that it was a fight to point Sparkle Plenty in the right direction.

 Anything can happen when you sail.  The Boy Scout motto BE PREPARED definitely relates to sailing.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Everything is coming up roses

Wifey and I have owned six homes during our marriage.  Six.  I like to move.  And when we move not only does the furniture come with us but so do the plants in the garden.  Yup.  Uprooted and hauled to the next house.  

Take this one.  It's a rose.  But it's just not any rose.  It originated in the garden of Wifey's grandmother.  What's equally amazing is that Wifey remembers all that stuff.  Where this came from.  Where that originated.  Who owned that and handed it down to our family.  Me?  I never think about those things.  Why should I when Wifey takes care of that end of the family business.

It's an easy Friday.  Might do this.  Might do that.  Nothing in the have to do column.  Wifey plans on having Friday drinks with a couple of lady friends while Bob stays at home to mind the grandchild.  It's just another rosy day.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

The Grasshopper and the Ant

Remember for fable of the grasshopper and the ant?  One played while the other prepared for winter.  I've been making like the ant.

Yesterday it was replace two sections of fence (only 38 sections to go).   Old fencing was cut up into firewood kindling.   Last week it was stack a cord of black oak (now there's two cords).    And yes, we will burn every stick of the two cords seen here and order a third before Spring.

Today the plan is to rake leaves, gather them and place them into very large green bins that will be emptied and hauled away (as they are every Monday) by the City of Cowtown.

The weather is turning quickly.  It's been 68 or so at 6 every morning.  Yesterday it was 52.  That's a sure sign that fall is here and that winter is right around the corner.

Another sign that winter will soon be here is that the freaking retail merchants already have their Christmas displays up.  Come on, people!  Let's at least get Halloween out of the way before you decorate so soon in your eager anticipation that Santa Claus is coming to town and your cash registers will be singing MERRY, MERRY CHRISTMAS!  Caaaa-ching!

There used to be an unspoken rule that everyone waited until the day after Thanksgiving to decorate their stores.  Then the started decorating right after Halloween.  Then it you'd see Christmas decorations around Halloween.  And then they started popping up before Halloween.  Now the stores are decorating in August and before Labor Day.

Heck, I don't begin decorating the house 6 months before my birthday, do I?

Do you?

It's Thursday and you know what that means.  Tomorrow is TGIF for all you working stiffs.

TGIF really means Toes Go In First.  Never forget that.


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Whiskeytown Lake, Very Northern California, United States