Thursday, December 29, 2016

Found on the Ground --UPDATED!

Over Christmas I was in Ness and came across this while I was out on a walk. It was a walk to the liquor store, if you must know...but anyway.....

Try and hazard a guess as to what it is....

I'll update this post with the answer--if anyone responds.

So.... H.B., this blog's faithful and intrepid reader guessed turtle eggs, allowing as to the fact that this was unlikely in landlocked Kansas. H.B gets the prize for at least giving it a try! What's his reward? Er....honorable status as MVP ---Most Valuable Post-Reader.

My own guess, when I first came upon the curiousity, was it oxidized metal? A form of lichen? I touched the brown base expecting firm resistance and was startled by its squishiness. Not long after, the true nature of the thing came to light. And it was revealed as being a wayward dropped brownie adorned with M&M's.  

M & M's that now resemble turtle eggs.    


Sunday, November 6, 2016

Slipping Into Darkness

It begins. Nothing can stop it now. We are hurtling towards winter....Slipping into darkness....

Squirrel Fever

Happens every year around this time....I get SQUIRREL FEVER!

How 610 Sports Radio Ruled My Days In October

Happy for the Cubs and their fans! Looking back at the wild ride the Royals gave us last year....and how I became a tad bit obsessive....

Royulz Funneez

Back when I had Royals newspaper clippings and too much time on my hands....this happened:

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Baseball Radio Silence

End of October, and I'm wearing my "Take October" Royals Championship pullover, but it's the Cubs and Indians in the World Series this time around. Just a handful more games and the lights will go out on Progressive and Wrigley Fields, and then.....the OFF-season. 

Of course my baseball radio fell silent weeks ago, as did the the soothing drone of the announcers....we are lucky in Kansas City to have such a good group of baseball guys whose congenial voices and spirited play-by-play brings comfort and tidings three hours a night, on many, many, MANY nights throughout the six-month season. I enjoy all of them, but the city has a special treasure in Denny Matthews, the colorful, crusty veteran (Hall of Famer) with the old-school voice, doling out dry wit in a calm, understated manner:   

""The horse is out of the barn and may well be down the road."   

"When the knuckler isn't knuckling, it's a long afternoon for the pitcher"

"Talk about burping up a game..."

"That dreaded sound of baseball vs. cup."

"The bottom of the fifth is gone ... and I would imagine a lot of fifths are gone after watching this."

"The Royals are playing like a buncha wet noodles"

"The scoreboard urging all the spectators to make noise. I would prefer a hit."

"Well it's over, and we hope we never have to see that again."

I miss all the little audibles that make baseball such a rewarding aural sport....the lithe sound of the ball hitting the catcher's mitt when a pitch doesn't get hit----and the satisfying THWACK of the bat when it does. The organ firing up at intervals, sometimes in staccato bursts, exhorting the crowd to clap in rhythm. On many a summer evening, while cleaning up the supper dishes...running an errand in my car....on many a Sunday afternoon, sweeping off the deck or more likely, lying on it, the air is permeated by the soft sing-songy backdrop of "Let's Go Royals", the heartening solidarity of some 30,000 fans, traveling by the miracle of sound waves from the stadium right through my AM radio speaker. Eventually the chants give way to the on-going hum of muffled chatter, hoots, hollers, whistles, and the occasional roar that lets loose at a heart-pulsing juncture.

If it's an away game, the crowd ebullience confuses me. I have to keep reminding myself we're not at home and that a cheering crowd is a bad thing. But away games introduce new quirks to the soundscape. When we're playing the Indians, they bang a drum incessantly--usually when they're beating the pants off us, which drives me crazy. I'm always VERY interested to hear what the organs at other ballparks sound like. I'm impressed by the rollicking carnival whompin' I heard coming out of.....dang, was it Wrigley Field or Comerica Park?....shame on me for not remembering. That will be a goal for next season --to rate the baseball organs at stadiums within the American League...and those few in the National League when we have interleague play. I'll publish my findings.

In the meantime....the sun sets earlier each day, and it's almost Halloween....which means another World Go Cubs!....before all the ballparks go dark for the long winter.  

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

My Birthday continued ---Wrap it up already!

Well, that didn't go as planned. I started live-blogging my birthday on the here it is 18 days later.....and I'm watching Cleveland vs. Cubs in the World Series. Go Cubs! Yeah, I ran into a few interruptions I admit......

...but it was a good birthday. A drive out to western Kansas is always the best present I could ask for, so I can be seeing this......

     By nightfall we were listening to the old highway songs....

     During my time out there, took a nice long walk around the town with my bro and daughter....

     Mmmm......wide open spaces.......

   A favorite vantage point.....lying flat on my back in the school yard like a hobo. On two separate occasions, a 12 year-old boy came running over to ask, "are you okay?"  Maybe his friends dared him.

The old shop building behind my mom's house is a great sun-catcher.

   But soon enough it was time to haul back to KC.....

Always seems like we lose the sun once we head back east......

Friday, October 7, 2016

Live-blogging my Birthday---It Continues

Wow --I'm looking at 1:18 again----12 hours after I started this.  I'm leaving town for Ness over an hour late. Right on schedule.  

Live-blogging my Birthday --Mid-morning

 At present I'm packing to go to Ness today, but early this morning I was creeping outside my daughter's sorority house. What compelled me to hit the road at rush hour, get stuck in a horrendous traffic jam and make a 90 minute round-trip to Lawrence?  My younger daughter needed to borrow a dress from her big sister for homecoming. And since I'm leaving town, this was my only chance to fetch the dress.

After procuring the garment, I went ahead and drove my daughter to her first class--which just happened to be in a building on a part of campus that was actually accessible to motorists---while dodging myriad college students sleep-walking to class. Not such a bad way to spend a birthday morning.

Around noonish I'll head back to Lawrence again, pick up daughter who will be finished with classes, and we'll head on our merry way to Ness City.  

Live-Blogging My Birthday--It Begins

It's 1:18 am. I'm 53 now. I made it! This far......Way to go, me. All that risky stuff I used to do----walking across sky-high railroad trestles, swimming in rain-swollen creeks,  my years of bronco-busting out west....none of it kept me from reaching this milestone!

So now, here I am, live-blogging my birthday at 1:00 in the morning. Next up:  I'm going to bed.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Embracing the pumpkin

Every day I get asked by the many people (in my head) who are dying to know--what am I waiting for? When am I going to embrace the pumpkin?

To which I reply,  "when the sky turns...when the leaves change...when the woolly larva emerges from the ovum...."

Look, I love pumpkins as much as the next guy. I totally want a pumpkin fair in my town, with a towering pumpkin pyramid, as seen above. I just think that to keep pumpkins special they are best kept in their place, and in their time. We all know how the seasonal infusion of pumpkin matter into everyday products can get out of hand.

For example, here are a few pumpkin products I'd rather not see:

Pumpkin Smoked Bacon---
--Mmm..good......yes, one bite conjures up that back-yard flavor of the rind left behind

Pumpkin Smoothie ---
--A physiological mechanism known as the "gag reflex" makes it hard to keep this down. Effective as a topical salve though

Pumpkin Shampoo --
--Natural extracts and all,'s really not that great to smell like a pie

Pumpkin Mayo---
--Just because you can add anything to mayonnaise nowadays, doesn't mean you should

Pumpkin Fresh Bathroom Cleaner--
--Only if your name is Mrs. Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater

Pumpkin Slaw--
--No matter how you dress it up, it's still just pumpkin guts

Pumpkin Soda--
--What are those specks floating around in there?

Pumpkin Brownies --
--That sounds kind of good, actually

Saturday, October 1, 2016


October, ya dig?
Mother Nature wears a glo-fro
I'm throwin' down like a mofo

The month of my increasing power----
before it all goes to hell.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Counting down the baseball games left

Five. A measly five games. That's it. I can count on one hand the number of games left for the Royals, which includes the one tonight against the Twins. Then the baseball voices will fall silent and sports radio will be totally taken over by football. And there will be a feeling in the evenings, as the leaves fall and the cold wind scatters them, that something is missing.

To be honest, I am one of those new fans who didn't notice baseball going on around me until the first World Series bid in 2014. But once I started paying attention, the sport quickly grew on me. More about this in the coming weeks, as I work through my baseball withdrawal...but for now, I'd like to post something I heard Josh Vernier, the "baseball insider" say on the radio a few days back.

He was explaining to two sports radio talk show hosts why blaming one pitcher for a bad season or blaming one set of circumstances in a game doesn't make sense, because there are too many unpredictable variables in baseball, and what he said helps explain ONE reason why I love baseball so much:

Josh Vernier on 610 Sports Radio:

"Baseball's a thinking man's game. Baseball is the game that resides ----like life ----in the grey area. Sure football can be black and while ---this didn't happen, so this is never black and white. There's never an easy answer in the game of baseball. I understand fans and I understand sports radio always wants things to be and sports radio don't line up, because it's never easy in the game of baseball. It's always quite the long explanation if you want the true answer as to why your team lost that day or why your team's gonna fall short in the season."  

Monday, September 26, 2016

Late September Lament

Is autumn my favorite season? I know it used to be, but I’ve kind of been on this sun kick for awhile, that’s making me rethink that. I have this tendency to lie around  in parks and other outdoor places, taking what I like to call my sun bath. This requires the earth to receive sunlight at a certain angle, so thanks to the buzzkill known as geometry, my chances left to do this are numbered.

I know October is coming with its cornucopia  and all. You don't have to tell me that. As October's Golden Child, born and nuzzled within its loving bosom, I've always been one of October's biggest boosters. But at this stage of the game, I’m still feeling conflicted about the change of season.

For late September is neither hither nor thither.  The leaves haven’t turned yet, (unless you live in one of those godforsook states up north where sunning  is a tepid affair akin to soaking in day-old bathwater)  yet there is a chill in the air.   A chill that sends you back into the house for a sweater and what’s worse, strips you of the ease with which you were moving through life just 24 hours prior, when it was warm enough to stroll down your driveway naked. Not that you did that or thought about it, or wondered who it was that called the police, but it’s now one less option for you, and less is sad.

Other things I see slipping away, and/or hardships to come:   

  • Baseball season is ending. If I were following one of those obnoxious teams that have been hot all year and are favored to win a play-off spot, it'd be far from over. But I'm following the Royals, who are still hungover from last year's World Championship victory fetes.(Go Gone Royals!) So one more week and the lovely baseball chatter on my radio will fall silent. No, football chatter is not lovely, so don't even....
  • It's growing too cold to sit on the deck late at night with a glass of wine. 
  • I guess I can put a burn barrel on the deck and rub my hands together over it. Although that means I'd have to put down my wine.   
  • Wait. Burn barrels are illegal. And the cops have recently stepped up patrols past my house....   
  • But I do have that old Weber kettle out back. Wouldn't hurt to fire that baby up.  
  • Well, as long as I'm sitting around the grill I might as well cook something.Which will mean I'll have to clean off all the gook from that cookout I had months ago. 
  • Sigh. This is exactly what I  meant when I said everything is harder.  
  • Another case in point: It's turning so cool indoors, I've had to use the microwave to melt the ice cream for soup night. 

Thursday, September 22, 2016

It's Fall! - Time to Burn Things!

BYOE (Bring your own effigy) and support your local bonfire. 

Pile on your unmentionables, unquench the quenchables.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Tout-er Suite!

At this moment in time, uncannily, both of my daughters are French tutors.

The younger tutors in high school, the eldest in college. The younger one signed up without knowing that her older sister was tutoring French at KU.

It's as if they are heeding some inescapable spore, born into their blood, planted there by our ancient French ancestors, who sent hopes for the survival of their genetic material, and some lingering memory of them, across many years and many miles of sea.  

Monday, September 19, 2016

They thought I was dying

I was visiting my mom in late August, and lolling about on the school yard behind her house. The air was perfect. The buffalo grass beneath me felt good....dry and wiry. The sky above me a clear bowl of blue. I lay flat on my back, my arms stretched out. It was bliss.

But the next thing I knew, these turkey vultures started circling overhead. Did they know something I didn't?

It was kind of eerie....  

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Star Trek is 50!

How could I have missed Star Trek's 50th anniversary?---a few weeks back, or whenever it was.

To pay belated tribute, I've dug out this old Star Trek chart I made once for an assignment I had to do for a web design class.  We had to use html to construct a table (columns and rows.)

The images of the Enterprise crew no longer display and I'm too lazy to reinstate them. Or I don't remember how.

No need to see their photos anyhow. This Trekkie Quick Guide will help you keep all the action straight, so you never have to be confused about who's doing what, or where the hell Chekov went. (Hint: he was an afterthought, brought on in the 2nd season as girl bait.)      

Star Trek Chart

A guide to characters and episodes

Trekkie Quick Guide








Amok Time Killed by Spock(it seems) Struck by powerful urge to mate Dupes Vulcans, fakes Kirk's death Left in command of ship Gripes about erratic changes in flight orders "She's lovely Mr. Spock, who is she?" "I think I'm going to get space sick"
Naked Time Rambles nonsensically about walking on beaches Struggles with feelings for Nurse Chapel Perturbed by partying lab techs "Captain, you can't mix matter and antimatter cold!" Strips down and charges crew with fencing foil Briefly taken hostage by rampaging Sulu Not yet part of crew
Devil in the Dark Hunts down acid-dripping blob Does freaky mind meld with the Horta Jim, I'm a doctor, not a bricklayer! Works feverishly to repair pump for nuclear reactor Aboard Enterprise Aboard Enterprise Not yet on crew
This Side of Paradise Loses spore-happy crew to mass love-in on planet below Madly in love, hangs from tree, grins like idiot Talks southern and slurps mint julips Off somewhere Sprayed with spores and becomes "one" Short-circuits ship radio and skips off to planet Not yet on crew
City on the Edge of Time In love with visionary social worker Wears hat to cover ears in 1930's America Crazed from cordrazine shot,wrecks past & future "Control circuits threatening to overload, Captain" Stranded in time vacuum Stranded in time vacuum Not yet on crew
Trouble with Tribbles Beseiged by Tribbles, Klingons and pesky grain officer Secretly likes Tribbles but pretends he doesn't Discovers that Tribbles are born pregnant Goes apeshit when Klingons insult Enterprise, starts brawl Hangs out in bar with Scotty and Chekov Buys Tribble for a pet and starts the whole mess Incensed when Klingons call Kirk a Denebian Slime Devil
The Deadly Years Becomes doddering old man Becomes slightly less doddering old man Becomes "just an old country doctor" "I just need a wee bit o' rest, that's all" "Romulans approaching from both sides!" Dismayed by senile captain "More blood, Chekov.Take off your shirt, Chekov. Roll over, Chekov

Star Trek ® and related marks are trademarks of CBS Studios Inc. Copyright © 1966, Present.

The pages on this site are for educational and entertainment purposes only.

All other copyrights property of their respective holders.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Report of Findings From Hell

Found in the bowels of the library where I work.

I like the plainspoken label, making its bold assertion without any further qualifications or fanfare.

It won't win him any awards, but Dr. Noel Lloyd is a fine typist. 


Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Spring Hair

Cheri has been shedding something awful.

At first it really bothered me, but then I figured, if you can't beat em, join em. So now I do all my shaving in the livingroom.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Fun with mannequins

Not sure what is going on here, but.....this looks more like window UN-dressing to me...

(vintage clothing store in Westport) 

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Baseball Card Store

Today I found a store that sells baseball cards. It's called, "The Baseball Card Store."  It was just by luck that I found it at all. I was in a part of town I don't normally go to, getting an oil change, because my regular oil change guy has a nasty skydiving habit, and so when I went by his place at 3:00 pm in the afternoon, it was dark and deserted.

So I'm sitting there in this tiny lobby, waiting for my oil change, when I noticed a sign outside advertising all the businesses in the strip mall behind the lube shop, and I saw the words "The Baseball Card Store." Of course I had to check it out.

I am hopelessly attached to cultural practices that predate the internet age and that are in danger of going extinct. Is there any place in today's world for the quaint act of collecting little squares of cardstock bearing baseball players' photos and stats? I don't know....I was just glad to see it hasn't completely died off yet and that there is a whole store devoted to it.

As you walk in, you can see you have found the motherlode:

Where else can you find a baseball card vending machine?

   Of course reverence must be paid to his Royalness George Brett    

Some of the more specialer cards are kept behind glass

They had a whole table-full of Royals World Series bobbleheads, selling for around $30. Not a bad price. I noticed there was an abundance of Johnny Cueto bobbleheads available!    

Friday, April 22, 2016

I'm So Darn Resourceful!

Got to work and realized to my horror I'd left my lipstick at home. And my lip pencil which had always been my back-up had broke and I'd thrown it out. What ever was I to do?

Then I tried brushing my powder blush on my lips, and it worked. Good enough, anyway, to keep me from looking bloodless. A resourceful gal always finds a way!      

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

I'm Going to Miss the YELLING

I guess I like the old, clunky ways.

The National Weather Service is going to stop "yelling" at us in all caps when treacherous weather approaches.

Like this:


    They say they no longer need to shout because announcements don't go out by telegraph anymore.     Maybe that's true, but I like the slightly alarmist tone of their blocky capitalized font. It                       conjures up old meteorologists with their barometric pressure gauges and their weather balloons.         And I for one, find that a comfort, in the face of a nasty storm.       

Monday, February 1, 2016

Man in the Boiler Room

The infernal clanking coming from the boiler room disturbed them all, but they pretended not to notice.They figured Johnny Demeret was down there, seeing about things. His shift ended at 5:00, but he often stayed an extra hour or two, if things went awry.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Domestic Appliance Abuse

The dishwasher no longer works unless I pound it and whack it. A good slam with the fat part of my fist to get it going....a pair of well-delivered smacks---POW!--right in the kisser!-- when it lags after that. I have to stay close for two hours, listening to it swish and crank to the next cycle. My attention lapses...I forget to keep listening....then all of a sudden I realize there is a lingering quietude that should not be. It has stopped again, and I have to get up and kick it around some more. Blam! Blam! Blam!

I won't tell the dishwasher repairman about this, of course, as it could compromise the warranty.

My dishwasher and me in happier times....back when it was a summery shade of avocado green and I wore pantsuits.