Just some thoughts

July 13, 2018

At the grocery store the guy bagging our purchases asked me if
we found everything and I replied that if we didn’t we should
have. For some reason he must have thought that was the funniest
thing he’d heard all morning as he was still chuckling when he
finished bagging and wished us a good day.

We are thinking of cruising to the “World’s Biggest Truckstop”
tomorrow to experience the Trucker’s Jamboree. Nothing like
walking through acres of shined up, chromed out, show trucks
during a hot spell. There’s only a 50% chance of rain so that
means the odds are just as good it won’t.

If it isn’t pouring down rain we’ll be there. Plenty of sharp
dressed trucks, good food, live music, and events you can’t see
anywhere else. Things like guys pulling an antique semi tracker
with a rope up a slight incline while being timed. Last year just
watching made me sweat more.

And I’ve been missing calls on my cell phone for a while now
and decided today was a good time to figure out why. Sitting at
the kitchen table I flipped open the phone only to discover a
missed call 4 minutes earlier. My thought was that since said
cell phone was older than dirt the ringer just quit.

The phone company has been after me for 3 years to get a smart
phone. They claim I’m past due. I don’t like upgrading or want
a smart phone. I just get tired of trying to talk to anyone at
at our local cell phone provider. They try to sell me a phone
that does everything but wash the car while I tell them I want
a flip phone without a camera.

All that said, I did manage to get the ringer going once again,
and yes, it rings when someone calls. No music or sound effects
for me. What’s wrong with a phone that rings?

Enjoy our Friday as we won’t see another one for a week. Now
I need more coffee and some leftover pizza.
Comments are always welcome.


A few things

May 24, 2018

Today is Moms birthday and I’d like to wish her a Happy
Birthday! She died on June 18, 2010, and would have been 89 had
she lived. I’ll be looking for some cardinals this morning and
at the Heavens later.

And since she couldn’t believe she raised a Republican I’d like
to present the following. Let’s pretend for just a moment that
I’m a Liberal/Progressive politician and I’ve just heard of the
rise is car thefts and shots fired calls here in our little part
of Iowa. What would I do?

Since we’ve heard the campaign slogans of some Liberals running
for Governor we have a pretty good idea. As the pretend
politician I would jet off to Washington, D.C., and give a
command performance before Congress on the evils of cars, and
guns, that can be stolen.

Then I would lobby for a retinal scanner to be put in the barrel
of all weapons so the gun wouldn’t work until you did a scan of
your retina. What could go wrong? And as a Progressive, far left
leaning politician I would also have a fix for the car theft

I am a pretend politician so these two separate problems
could not be solved in one day so I would have to return to
address the Congress on the solution for the car thefts. Since
gun control advocates believe the gun is the problem then the
car and not the thief has to be the problem.

Thumb print recognition technology would have to be installed
on all vehicles to recognize up to 3 prints of authorized
drivers of said vehicle. Even with the key in the car it would
not start until the sensor recognizes a thumb print. And of
course the vehicle would automatically shut off when the
shifter is placed in park.

This should only add about $10,000 to the price of new
vehicles but would soon pay for itself as there would be no more
vehicle thefts. Either that or we could just build all vehicles
with manual transmissions and the juvenile offenders who steal
them couldn’t drive them.

Saying all that, enjoy our Thursday as it looks to be a hot one
here on the east coast of Iowa. Now for some coffee.
Comments are always welcome.

We didn’t know

May 7, 2018

After a late night my eyes opened to greet the sun at the crack
of 10 am. I stayed up to finish a book entitled “Granite
Mountain” by Brendan NcDonough with Stephan Talty. It told the
tale of the Granite Mountain Hotshots and the Prescott fire that
took lives of 19 of its 20 members.

I was surprised to learn that these wildland firefighters are
still using the same basic tools that were used since 1911! The
pulaski is a tool that combines a cutter mattock and an axe. It
has been in use since 1911 and become the national standard tool
of the United States Forest Service in the 1930s.

The driptorch is a canister that typically contains a mixture
of 30% gasoline and 70% diesel fuel with a spout with a wick at
the end that drips fire to burn vegetation before the wildfire
gets there and makes a fire break.

A fire shelter that is made of layers of aluminum foil, woven
silica, and fiberglass big enough to cover a firefighter when
trapped and is designed to reflect radiant heat and protect
against convective heat. The first known use of a fire shelter
was in 1804 when a boy was saved from a prairie fire when his
mother covered him with a fresh bison hide.

These shelters are designed to withstand heat up to around
700 degrees yet a wildland fire can reach 3,000 degrees. There
is someone now working on a shelter that could withstand up to
1,700 degrees. Through 2013 these shelters have been used 1,200
times with only 41 deaths.

Today these firefighters do use radios to communicate but do
have any GPS device to signal their location if things go
wrong. I also learned the hotshots are not doing it for the money
and resources are slim.

The book mentioned many things but the above, which I fleshed
out a bit, were of interest to me. The survivor is suffering
from PTSD but is getting help. And you may remember of the movie
“Only the Brave” which is based on the same event as the book.

Enjoy our Monday as we only get one this week. Now I need more
Comments are always welcome.

Amazing people

April 1, 2018

What if I told you a motorcycle rider going for the land speed
record crashed at 343 mph? Some would think said rider didn’t
survive while others would assume the rider was in for a long
hospital stay. Truth is, she walked away with only minor
injuries and did get checked for a possible concussion.

This rider was Valerie Thompson and she was born on April 17,
1967. She is a seven-time motorcycle land speed record holder
and a charter member of the Mohave Magnum 200 MPH Club.

The motorcycle is a stream-liner, but is still a motorcycle.
Early this past March Thompson was in Australia at the Lake
Gairdner World Speed Trials when her bike crashed, at 343 mph,
and spread the wreckage almost a mile over the course.

This lady is still going to make an attempt at the land speed
record of 376.363 mph. After all, she walked away from the
wreck. To make the tale stranger than fiction, the bike was
designed to protect the driver in crashes at speeds of up to 345

Enjoy the remainder of our Easter Sunday. We’ll be having
leftover ham for a while and it was worth it. Now for more
coffee and ham sandwich.
Comments are always welcome.

Unrelated thoughts

March 22, 2018

The above photo just made us laugh. But with modern technology
it could happen. Farming has come has come a long ways since the
days of hand start tractors.

Speaking of farming, while visiting Dad we talked a little of
the never-ending chores involved with 20th century farming. The
house never had running water so even wanting a glass of water
meant a trip to well. And we concluded the outhouse didn’t get
used as often in the winter.

After spending some time online yesterday I believe people
really are taking the question “Are you stupid?” as a challenge.
One video I saw scrolling down a page had the headline “Man
Clubs Fish with Gun, Shoots self in his junk!” I didn’t need to
watch it to know the guy shot himself in the crotch nor had the
desire to witness him doing it.

I’ve been trying something different this week and have looked
to recipes when attempting to cook something. Last week I told
the wife I wanted to make chili-mac and needed macaroni. She
stumped me when she inquired if I had a recipe. That’s when I
realized my assumption that cooking the macaroni and adding a
can or two of chili might not equate to a recipe.

So I found a recipe and quickly realized we didn’t have half
the ingredients listed. A trip to the store fixed that and
following the recipe the chili-mac turned out pretty good. Who
would have thought?

And I got some pictures to upload today that we’ll share at a
later date. Enjoy our Thursday. Now I need some coffee and a
Comments are always welcome.

Of interesting incidents

March 6, 2018

Sometimes the best intentions land one in situations that are
tougher than an old boot. Today I attempted to do something nice
for Dad and ended up in the Twilight Zone. I went through it and
still don’t believe it.

On the way over to Dads house this morning I stopped in a
grocery store that had a bakery and sold fresh bakery goods each
morning to feed those with a sweet tooth. After looking around
some sweet rolls with blueberry globs in the middle caught my

Dad loves blueberries so I wandered to the front and the
cashiers that awaited me there. And the Twilight Zone awaited.
The little machine that reads the credit/debit cards refused to
recognize my card. Since I don’t carry cash, I didn’t get the rolls.

No problem, I was in a store that had a branch of my bank in
the store. So the ATM beside this branch also informed me my card
was invalid. Walking around to the teller windows a sign
informed me the bank didn’t open until 9 am. It was 8:23 am when
I read it.

So I cruised over to Dads and after a good visit returned to
the bank in the store at 9:45 am. The nice lady behind the
counter took my card, typed something on a keyboard, and got a
strange look on her face. You know, the one someone gets if they
suck on a lemon.

She then said my account was flagged for fraud and asked if I
was in another country two days earlier. I naturally replied
that I was not. She then claimed that my account was flagged
due to charge for an International Border Crossing fee. Lord
love a duck.

I was invited into a little cubicle and tried to get to the
bottom of the problem. The lady told me I would get a new card
and I was not a happy camper as that would mean notifying those
who direct deposit into the account and the automatic payments
that go out.

My account was frozen over this border crossing fee which
turned out to be 8 cents! Luckily I kept my wits about
me and did finally walk out with my old card working like it
did before the ‘fraud’. In the end a company I’ve been dealing
with for over 3 years added the 8 cent fee on a separate
invoice and made my day interesting.

Enjoy our Tuesday and the white fluffy love from above.
Comments are always welcome.

Got it wrong?

February 28, 2018

A friend sent a link to a site that promised the honest truth
about you according to your birthday. Not usually having any
success with such sites I decided ‘why not?’

His birthday is about a month after mine and his result said:
“He puts on a brave face every day, but the truth is that he
feels everything very deeply. He is an incredibly sensitive
person and he cares for the ones he loves more than anyone could
ever imagine.”

Sounded almost like poetry to me, and the results would have to
similar for me, or so I thought. Mine turned out slightly
different and sounded more like a judge announcing sentence.
Mine said “He will never give up without a fight. He has been
through a lot in his life and it has built up an inner strength
that cannot be easily broken. He has the confidence to know what
he deserves in life and he has no problem fighting for what he

Wait a minute. Why does mine mention fighting twice? This may
have been a good description 25 years ago but not today. It
sounds like a stranger to me yet when I read it to the wife and
mentioned my thoughts she laughed. Granted I have been through
a lot, but I am 66 years old! And I am bull-headed and it’s
pretty hard to change my mind. And I do go in with confidence
when I believe I’ve been slighted.

Oh. Perhaps it’s a better description that I first thought.
Enjoy our Wednesday anyway.
Comments are always welcome.