Friday, August 28, 2009

Send Money

I've thought many times about starting a blog requesting that any reader send me a $1 bill. You could potentially pay off all your bills. Realistically, I noticed I've only had 4 hits on this blog today. Oh, well. Good idea while it lasted. Maybe another day.

Contests are my favorite, however. Our local television station has a contest going now. They issue a numbered card to you. You watch the news and listen for them to draw a number. If it's your number, you call the next day and win. Sounds like high odds against you, but I've won it twice now. The first time they showed my commercial so many times during the next 3 years that most everyone in town knows my face. Many ask if I've won again. Now I'll tell them yes.

I love contests.


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Peaceful Waters

I just returned from a visit with my parents and several siblings. I travelled to Albuquerque then from there to Utah with my sister, Nene. We had an enjoyable trip there and back. I don't think conversations stopped for a solid week. The miles flew by as we travelled, in fact, we failed to notice some towns along the way.

While at my parents home we talked from morning till late at night, stories of family, urban legends, politics, religion and everything in between. We shopped at Walmart, grocery stores, second hand stores and tourist shops.

The last visit we made to my parents house found my mother barely able to walk across the room and getting tired from that simple effort. This trip, as we drove up the block to the driveway, we saw my mother, outfit accessorized with a large pink hat, running across the sidewalk across the street to avoid getting sprayed by the sprinkler. Instead of spending all her time on either the couch or the chair, she accompanied us on most of our shopping sprees.

After several weeks of chemotherapy, my mother is still feeling stronger, not nauseaus from the chemo, and still in possession of her hair. So far the only ill effects from her chemo was a sunburned nose and cheek. Spirits were high and smiles were frequent.

Although my father is still unsteady on his feet and falls somewhere every week, as we left their house to return home, we had the most peaceful farewell in a long time. While I understand that this life is temporary, as evidenced by the passing of the mother of a good friend of mine, these are experiences I count as some of the tender mercies of the Lord to our family.

Thanks, Nene, for taking me along.

Happy trails for sure,


Friday, August 14, 2009

Lubbock by Kayak

Since I got my kayak I have not gotten my fill of being in it yet. Neither have I utilized my handy-dandy Texas fishing license sufficiently. I decided that when I got back from vacation I would head out with both items to engage in some serious relaxation.

My son, a teenager, was not interested in arising early enough (before 10am) during his summer vacation to get out and about. I therefore resolved to go alone into the not so wild waters of Lubbock. I packed the kayak and gear into the back of my trusty Ford Ranger pickup and left in search of water, a daunting task in West Texas. Fortunately, There are several bodies of water, I won't flatter them by calling them lakes, in the vicinity. My favorite waters include a scenic waterfall, bridges, park and dam.

I paddled away from the boat launch, though I could easily put my 39lb kayak in the water anywhere I desired, and after arriving at my designated spot, I drifted just off the shore and worked a white spinnerbait next to the cattails.

In fairly short order I had a strike. Now I'm not a small man and can easily lift or maneuver a kayak whereever I want. The 4lb, 18 inch bass I hooked also seemed to have little trouble moving the kayak, with me inside, wherever he wanted, but fortunately bass tire quickly enough. I played around and the bass jumped, splashed and swam for all he was worth, but in the end I led him into a small dip net then to a chain fish stringer. I'm all for catch and release for everyone else, but this was a huge fish and I didn't bring a camera.

I paddled around for about another hour and hooked a small bass that thought he was a big bass then decided to go home and show off. Of course I took pictures, measured weighed and bragged to my oldest son by text, my youngest son in person, my two youngest daughters by phone and in person and to a neighbor who just happened to be outside at the wrong time.

I guess the only fish I've ever caught that were bigger than this were carp, but they taste about as muddy as the river bottoms they swim on. Just for fun I watched a Youtube video on cleaning bass then looked up a recipe. I settled on rolling the fillets in corn meal and frying them. Turns out a 4lb fish has an awful lot of meat on it. I ate less than half the fish and put the rest in the fridge for later.

There's only a few things to top a day like that. I think the hot tub's calling.


Monday, August 10, 2009

Make a Wish

I look forward to August each year, though not for the extreme heat or even the start of school. Ok, I do look forward to the start of school. It gets the kids busy again instead of wandering aimlessly around the house looking for something to battle the boredom. I anticipate August each year because it is the time of year when the Perseids meteor shower arrives. If you look to the northeast after dark, you can see up to 60 meteors per hour. The moon is particularly bright right now, so you just have to check and see what you see throughout the night, but the best time is supposed to be at 2am.

John Denver wrote Rocky Mountain High about this meteor shower. "You can see it raining fire in the sky." I love to go camping during this time, but rarely get to because of work. Last night I awoke between 2 and 3am and went to check the sky. Had conditions been more favorable I would have gotten in the hot tub and watched the heavens. As it was, the moon was bright through an overcast sky, conditions which make it impossible to see any stars or meteors.

You can be assured I will be checking the sky the next few nights. I'll set my alarm for 2am on August 12th. That is the peak of the showers. I'd love to be out on my parents porch watching the meteor shower. There are very few lights out there.

On an interesting side note, when a meteor goes through the atmosphere it leaves a trail. Ham radio buffs and others can bounce signals off that trail for extremely long distance communication. There are so many meteors all the time that there is an industry around this phenomena that tracks and uses these trails to transmit condensed packets of information using computers and radios to receiving stations around the world. Just a bit of trivia.

Don't forget to make a wish,


Thursday, August 6, 2009

Pot of Gold

Anyone who knows me knows that I love a bargain. I hit the garage sales all the time. I go to second hand stores, ebay and woot. When you find that rare treasure it is just like a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow.

What I like even better, though, is winning contests. There is no substitute for that high of winning. With that said, we just won $200 on a television contest. This is a long running contest that has lasted for 4 or 5 years. In fact, I was the very first cash winner of the contest. I won $200 way back when. I love this station.

I wonder if the radio stations are playing any big contests right now...


Radio Active

I good friend of mine just convinced me into applying for membership in the Texas State Army MARS radio organization. Of course I haven't been officially accepted yet, but this is a part of the Texas State Guard and assists the military in operations, especially emergencies such as hurricanes. My friend also loaned me some equipment, which I'm sure would be a while before I could afford to buy it on my own. Now I'm hoping to learn the ropes to be able to be of use to anyone. I'm also hoping more of my family will get ham radio licenses and equipment so we can talk if other means of communication are down. Lonehawk is licensed and I am looking forward to talking to him. I still have considerable adjustments to make to my antenna, but I've been able to talk to my friend on his radio already. Wow. I can talk at least a mile...

It will get better.


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Too Sexy for this Blog

I don't know exactly why it caught my attention, but there was a column I read the other day on what makes a guy sexy to women. It may be that all of us want to think of ourselves that way regardless of our gender, age, weight or maturity.

Here's a link to the article, but I will summarize below:

Top 7

1. Knows how to wink
2. Radiates a calm, confident presence
3. Takes care of himself physically
4. Has style
5. Wears a nice cologne
6. Is affectionate
7. Has a good sense of humor

I won't ask for comments on how I rate. My wife likes me however I am.

; ^ )

How sexy is a wink like that?