Thursday, April 26, 2007

Turtle in the Road

Yesterday driving home from work, I spied a large (bigger than a serving platter) soft-shell turtle trying to cross Highway 35 just North of Alvin. He was (I assume it was a "he" since a "she" would've asked someone for advice on an easier, less dangerous way to get from one place to another) in the middle of the right Northbound lane at the moment I saw him. There was a red Cavalier bearing down on him, closing at around 50 mph. I looked at the driver and the nose of the car dipped slightly as she braked and made a small course correction; she straddled the old fella as he yanked his head back in to avoid the inside of a tire.

When he emerged from the back of the car, I looked down the road and I saw about 15 vehicles of varying sizes, shapes and tire counts. I wondered if he would survive the new onslaught, knowing that some of the close-followers wouldn't have time to swerve to miss the great slick beast.

At that second, I empathized with that turtle; things happen fast, and sometimes they keep happening. Without much of a break in sight. And you, the turtle in the road, don't have much to say about most of it. Except maybe, "Oh DANG...". If you're lucky, you can finish your phrase.

When I made the return trip this morning, I looked for evidence of the old guy, secretly hoping not so see a large greasy spot in my lane. Not usually one to have much sympathy for soft-shelled turltes, I was pulling for him.

I am glad to say that the roads were clear this morning, save for that skunk near Friendswood. Despite the unwise decision that the big guy made in trying to cross a busy highway at the worst time of day, he made it to the new retention pond in the new subdivision they're building. Someday, a kid will tell of a giant turtle that ate his puppy at the side of that pond.

I really don't like soft-shelled turtles.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Your Best Shot

Is cortisone. Especially if you have a bad shoulder. Yeah, it comes in a needle six inches long, and requires two others to accompany it, but it's already worth it.

I got my bad shoulder ("bad shoulder, bad, bad shoulder...") injected first thing this morning. Well not FIRST thing, I signed in and wrote the check for the co-pay (hurt worse than the injection), THEN got the injections.

The big needle, full of cortisone and some kind of pain management juice, was the most uncomfortable; it went really deep (I didn't actually SEE it, he snuck in behind me) but I felt the injection site at my left shoulder and felt the "deep pressure" (Dr. Holt's words) all the way down to my right knee...

They said that it could be irritating for 36 hours or so, but I reassured them that I could be irritating for a lot longer than that. Try 47 years.

I am sentenced to six weeks of physical therapy three times a week. I can take the physical discomfort; I know that my shoulder will feel better soon. The co-pain is what this geezer will cringe at the most. Rumor has it that the PT sessions are $40 each, and at three times a week for six weeks, that adds up to some serious fishing equipment. Almost to the software level.

But if all of this brings my shoulder back into my good graces, it may be worth it.

Sunday, April 22, 2007


We have blue dust bunnies in the bathroom. Not that dust bunnies in our bathroom are unusual, just that they are blue.

Last week we were in Sam’s Club, and we made the mistake of walking around with our eyes open. With the outsized basket leading the way, we went down every aisle and weighed whether we had the room/need/cash for any of it. I think most of what they sell is impulse buying of the highest order. Most likely, the giant quantities of food get wasted.

We found ourselves on the linen aisle, and there were two huge cardboard bins of towels with “8 for $15” or some ridiculously low price. We have been slowly losing towels for a while, the inevitable rips and tears, bleach holes, glass break/spill mishaps and ‘we left it outside for the kitties”. It seems we had to wash towels every day just to keep up with the demands of showers and hair washing.

With a deal like that staring at us, all we had to do was choose blue or white. White was not an option for us; we just aren’t a “white towel” family. The blue was the instant choice. We bought two bundles. Of course, we picked up some washcloths, too. Blue as well.

Now, in the shower as I am drying off, I start to see little tufts of blue against my white skin. And when I get out of the shower to dry and dress, I squint down into the tub and see it speckled with blue lint. I wash it out the best I can in my semi-blind state, but I know they are still there. As the drying process persists, I am sure the linting phenomenon does as well.

When we wash a load of the new towels, the dryer lint trap is a thick blue blanket that comes off all at once. I am tempted to make a pillow or a comforter out of it. I just don’t know how long it will last. The towels seem to be of good quality, but I wonder if I should save the lint to make new towels out of when they dwindle to nothing.

I bet I could find instructions on how to do that on the internet.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Where O Where is the Fusion?

I got to work this morning and spied my reflection in a mirror. My neck looks like a bull's at the hands of a matador. There was blood everywhere. The carnage made me madder than anything, why does the Fusion cost so much? I longed for the phalanx of blades in the smooth patrol over my face and neck.

So much for that. I'll bleed my blood rather than bleeding money.
I'm over it.

...But they have one with a motor in it, I wonder what THAT's like...

Monday, April 16, 2007

Growth Pie Study: UPDATE

IT is with a heavy waist that I announce the results of the Flying Saucer Pie Growth Chemical Study; Chocolate, Lemon and Key Lime...

Key lime most likely had more of the chemicals in there, since I ate most of it myself and nobody else grew any larger. The suit still fits pretty much the same, but one more study and I may need to go back to the tailor. Chocolate was good, but not as good as my mother-in-law's; Lemon was good, but not as good as my mom's; Key lime just made me want to focus solely on that variety. I could taste the sweetened condensed milk (Dime brand, right?) along with the lime. The consistency was smooth and sweet, the hint of lime tanginess coupled with, uh, DANG, I need some more of it...

No, I'll be strong. I'm already big...

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Growth Chemicals

Well, I bought a new suit last Friday. I had to get the trousers altered because they were, like size 46 or something and unhemmed, of course. So the tailor had to put cuffs at the bottom and take them up quite a bit in the waist and seat. QUITE a bit! I picked them up this afternoon and tried them on. Well, the pants were a little loose, which I'm sure is the standard procedure for suit pants. You don't want to be struggling with a tight waistband when you're supposed to be looking beautiful, right?

My wife bought three pies from her sister's son as a fundraiser. Flying Saucer Pies from Flying Saucer Pie Company in Houston. Chocolate, lemon and key lime. I have been studying them quite carefully, and have concluded that the ingredients include a substance that promotes growth in humans. I think it's gradual, but the amount of study that I am conducting (two down, one to go), may show that the rate accelerates randomly.

And theoretically that may take care of the suit pants being a little too loose.

Stay tuned.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Happy Easter

As we all know, the celebration of Easter is a mélange of Christian and pagan celebrations. One is the commemoration of the ministry, death and resurrection of the Messiah, the Savior of the world, Jesus; and the other is an observance of the vernal equinox, the coming of spring and the new life offered thereby.

So you have the Easter bunny, decorated eggs and the Risen Savior, all at one time. In East Texas, however, there is a fete involving not the Easter bunny, but the Easter Possum.

While considered a nuisance and an ugly, prehistoric, giant rat-like creature, the opossum is a gentle marsupial with no malice for anyone. Actually, they have a taste for snails and slugs and snakes, the three favorite creatures to hate.

In the Eastern part of Texas, the locals revere the possum as a food source and the harbinger of spring. This time of year, the woods are rife with possum. You can’t drive down a country road at night without risking a close encounter. And at Easter time, you need to watch out, because the possum you swerve to miss may be the celebrated Easter Possum. This messenger of the season is decked out in a gray fur coat and the special set of 42 teeth. In the marsupial pouch, she carries eggs, candy and baby possum, the symbol for summer barbeques. Typically, the children leave nests of clover, pine needles and snails for the Easter Possum to enjoy on her nightly rounds. There is also a small plug of chewing tobacco for luck guarding the Easter Possum against locals with a .410.

Sometimes pickings get slim in East Texas, especially in the counties where the logging industry has sagged, and although it’s not recommended or encouraged, it is perfectly acceptable to revere the Easter Possum next to potatoes and poke salad.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

It's Been a Week...

...and i've got nothing. Sorry for both of you regular readers. i just don't have time. i had a couple of good ideas; my sister reminded me of something, but i didn't have time to write/type it down and now it's gone. i shut my eyes for a minute and someone came and snatched the thoughts from me.