My personal favorites are "Giving 110%", "Dogs in Clothes" and "Plumber's Cleavage", not that I would really compare that last with the common thought.
Things That Must Die
March 31, 2008
March 27, 2008
March 25, 2008
I love to sit out in the garden on nice days and look at her; she changes colors with the position of the sun, a lovely golden-brown in the morning shade to a dull saffron in the afternoon glare. The shadows of the clouds scurrying overhead diffuse the light across her face, seemingly making her change expression.
She's not beautiful, but would be more what we might say here in Texas, "a handsome woman". The babe in arms shows she's fertile and that was a necessity for anyone wanting to carve out a future here on the Golden Plains. You needed a lot of sons to help with the plowin' and a few girls to help their momma take care of the menfolk.
I had been taking photos from the left because that's the way the sun was shining and I couldn't get a good photo from the other direction.
Something was wrong, though; it wasn't just the sun, but there was something a bit odd and I couldn't put my finger on it. It wasn't until I got home and downloaded all these photos and really looked closely at them that I saw what was bothering me. I even went back up to the library to verify what I had seen.
Mizz Pioneer Woman really needs to blow her nose; she's got a spider nest in her left nostril.
Just read an article on the Amarillo.com website, Tough enough for tackles, about the possibility of a team for Amarillo in the National Women's Football League.
It's about time and no, I'm not talking equality, but for the chance of a job. A good job...no, a GREAT job.
You see, it was written long ago that I would be doing something in this particular field.
Back in h.s., the juniors and seniors had this tradition: the seniors would will "things" to the juniors. I willed my favorite parking spot and an ashtray to some of my junior buddies. In turn, the juniors would make predictions about what sort of life/jobs the seniors would have in the future.
The juniors predicted I would someday be a trainer for a woman's football team, specializing in after-practice rubdowns and shoulder pad adjustments.
I can't wait.
March 24, 2008
When I first started this blog, I thought it would be fun to do "reviews" of my favorite eating establishments here in town. The reviews would be tongue-in-cheek, because if I didn't like the food, I wouldn't eat at them.
When talking about places to eat in Pampa, the logical place to begin would be at the Coney Island. It's a local icon and the first place most college students on break or former residents head when they return to visit.
Local legend maintains that Woody Guthrie worked there (before it was the Coney) and performed and wrote some of his most famous songs there. The Gikas brothers owned it until a few years ago, and were famous for their ill tempers and public lambasting of the waitresses when they screwed up an order. (no tickets were written, the orders were yelled out by the waitresses and woe be unto the poor woman who didn't follow their strict instructions)
As was said, it's changed hands, and the best thing about the new ownership is that it's ever so much cleaner than it was with the previous owners. (they were too busy yelling to clean the bathroom and kitchen, I guess)
Some people rave about the food, but I believe it's no worse, no better than most any other place of its type. They serve a limited menu: hamburgers, hot dogs (coneys), chili and stew, but I'll stipulate that the pies are among the best I've ever sampled. (chocolate and lemon are my favorites)
I took my camera down there so I could take photos of my order, but I was too late to get my normal pick of pie and had to settle for what was left. I never had eaten the blueberry pie, so that's what I ordered.
I was served, and I arranged the food for my shot; nothing spectacular, but I would wager that anyone who has eaten there would recognize what I had: "two on one, deluxe ham" with the blueberry pie. (hey, I was HUNGRY!) Before I found out I was diabetic, it would've been a strawberry soda to drink, but now I settle for Diet Coke.
I snapped a few shots, decided they were good enough and started to chow down.
It wasn't until I got home and was wondering which of the photos were the best that I noticed something on my ham sandwich.
That was either a fly, or blueberries have wings.
March 22, 2008
This is an animated campaign ad done by some supporters of Ron Paul. I think it's brilliantly done, and of course, the message is true...and frightening.
To view a higher resolution version, please visit the video creator's website
When I started this blog, I thought of adding more political views and commentary than I have, but decided that I would rather make it a bit more light-hearted and not so serious. I think I'll keep to the same format, but this vid impressed me so much, I couldn't help but post it.
March 21, 2008
March 20, 2008
March 19, 2008
I remember when this came out, the Vietnam War was still going strong and I was just about to start high school. It still makes me sad to hear it.
I bought the 45 with some of the first money I ever earned. My youngest sister stole it, along with my In the Year 2525 record.
The Weekly World News ran an article about my mother.
Just kidding, but in a political forum I frequent, some doofus is making all sorts of asinine accusations about John McCain, the likely Republican nominee for President. He's now saying he thinks McCain is an alien. One might think he was kidding unless having read his other nonsensical posts.
It made me go look for those infamous issues of Weekly World News. They're hilarious, and I wonder if anyone really thinks any of the lead stories are true.
Some might, I suppose... the same ones who think pro. wrestling is real.
My granddad really WAS featured in WWN, though.
March 17, 2008
* you will never play professional basketball
* you swear very well
* at least one of your cousins holds political office
* you think you sing very well
* you have no idea how to make a long story short
* you are very good at playing a lot of very bad golf
* there isn't a huge difference between losing your temper and killing someone
* much of your food was boiled
* you have never hit your head on the ceiling
* you spent a good portion of your childhood kneeling
* you're strangely poetic after a few beers
* you're poetic a lot
* you will be punched for no good reason...a lot
* some punches directed at you are legacies from past generations
* your sister will punch you because your brother punched her
* many of your sisters are Catherine, Elizabeth or Mary...and one is Mary Catherine Elizabeth
* someone in your family is incredibly cheap
* it is more than likely you
* you don't know the words but that doesn't stop you from singing
* you can't wait for the other guy to stop talking so you can start talking
* "Irish Stew" is the euphemism for "boiled leftovers from the fridge"
* you're not nearly as funny as you think you are, but what you lack in
talent, you make up for in frequency
* there wasn't a huge difference between your last wake and your last kegger party
* you are, or know someone, named "Murph"
* if you don't know Murph, then you know "Mac"
* if you don't know Murph or Mac, then you know "Sully"
* you'll probably also know Sully McMurphy
* you are genetically incapable of keeping a secret
* your parents were on a first name basis with everyone at the local emergency room
last but not least...
Being Irish means...
* your attention span is so short that---oh, forget it.
March 15, 2008
If you've posted to most any forum lately, you'll be familiar with the "captcha" code that's used to weed out spambots. The above are some of the ones I've seen in this past week.
The frustrating thing about captcha codes is that they're sometimes hard to read; when it requires a case-sensitive input I often wonder- is that a lower case "L" or is it an uppercase "i"? Is it an O (oh) or is it a 0 (zero)? Sometimes, as you can see in the examples above, the letters are at all sorts of angles and it's hard to tell a "Z" from a "T" or an "S" from a "5".
I've had troubles deciphering them and used the "hear it!" feature only to have the code change after I've listened to the sequence. I've even input the code and then had my post vanish into the internet ozone. (thank goodness I've learned -- from my years in MSN Groups -- to copy any post before I send. I do it out of habit now, even with my emails)
My favorite captcha codes are those that use two or more random words. This one was especially "titillating".
They could've just used a photo, though.
|You Are Peppermint Flavored Gum|
You have a sharp mind that is always churning.
You are mentally hyper. You're always thinking of something.
And while your mind is always on, you're not the most physically active person around.
Some people make mistake you for being lazy, but the truth is: you never relax.
You tend to get so deeply into your projects that you ignore everything around you.
You are creative and cutting edge. You love telling people about your newest ideas and discoveries.
March 14, 2008
rodomontade \rod-uh-muhn-TADE; roh-duh-; -TAHD\, noun:Vain boasting; empty bluster; pretentious, bragging speech; rant.
This was the word of the day today, from the feed in our right-hand navbar.
I wondered if rodomontade.com has been taken so I checked.
It's for sale! Price: $1,895.00
That seems fairly expensive, but if all the jerks and buttwipes I've encountered on the 'net chipped in a penny each, they could have it!
I was browsing through a forum last night, reading the posts and wondering if I wanted to join. I happened to look down at the bottom of the page, and like a lot of forums, it had a "Who is online now?" feature.
As I said, I wasn't a member, so I was either counted along with four other guests or three other robots.
March 9, 2008
Thank goodness the Pak-a-Burger has changed hands (again) and that the new owners have repainted the building and put it back to the original white w/ red trim. The color the last owner painted it, Harvester gold w/ green trim(local h.s. colors), reminded me too much of baby poo - which isn't much of an appetite stimulus.
Was glad to see they have new hours, too, but when I went there earlier to get me a burger, it was closed! I couldn't understand why; I got down there late, but I sure thought they'd still be open at 2:30!
Brush with Pampa lawmen leads to bounty hunter life
By Cheryl Berzanskis
Duane Chapman was just a skinny kid when he lived in Pampa in the 1970s. Now he's cable television's "Dog the Bounty Hunter" and rounds up bail-jumping criminals on the A & E Network.
Chapman, who operates a bail bond business in Hawaii, styles himself a man once on the wrong side of the law who became a Christian family man, bail bondsman and bounty hunter who puts the bad guys away. His television persona is larger-than-life and expressive, rough around the edges but golden at heart.
Chapman moved to Pampa after he married his first wife, LaFonda Sue Honeycutt, in 1972. His time there, especially the hazy events of one crucial evening, set much of the stage for what came after.
"I'd like to say I became a man in Texas," Chapman said, "and always and forever carry that Texas star in my heart, and always and forever I will make Texas proud."
A fatal shotgun blast later
Chapman was involved in the Sept. 15, 1976, homicide of alleged pimp and drug dealer Jerry Oliver in Pampa. Chapman, 23 at the time, and three others were charged with acting together to kill Oliver.
Court records indicate the quartet went to Oliver's house because they heard he had marijuana. But an argument broke out and Donald Wayne Kuykendall, wielding a sawed-off shotgun, shot Oliver.
Charlie Love retired from the Pampa Police Department in 2001 and currently works for the Roberts County Sheriff's Office. He was one of the first officers to arrive after Oliver was shot at his Pampa home at 1072 Prairie Drive.
Love took Oliver's dying statement as he lay bleeding inside the modest one-story home. Oliver gave Love names. Officers pieced together the rest.
The next day, officer Randy Stubblefield arrested Chapman. Stubblefield and another officer, Preston Bailey, waited in the alley behind Chapman's home at 501 Roberta St. as two officers approached the front door. Chapman barreled out the back door and Stubblefield tackled him.
The other suspects, Ruben Garza, Cheryl Fisher and Kuykendall, were arrested the same day.
During the trial, Kuykendall testified the shooting was accidental and occurred while he and Oliver struggled.
Judge Grainger McIlhaney handed Kuykendall a 10-year sentence. Garza was given a 10-year probated sentence. Fisher pleaded guilty and was a witness for the state. She received eight years probation.
Chapman, who had two previous convictions, was sentenced to five years in prison. He began serving his time Aug. 18, 1977, and was paroled Jan. 31, 1979. His parole was terminated Dec. 20, 1980.
Old ties to Pampa reinforce new life
Stubblefield, who later was elected Gray County Sheriff, heard from Chapman in the 1990s.
"One day when I was sheriff, I got a phone call and it was Chapman," Stubblefield said. "(He) told me he was doing the bounty hunter work, and he was gonna do a story about his life and he wanted to come to the old Gray County jail where he was incarcerated so he could get some pictures.
"I told him we had built a new jail and the old jail (was) abandoned and had been scrapped out. So he never did come to Pampa."
Harold Comer, the former district attorney who prosecuted the group, recalled Chapman as "just a skinny kid."
Comer said Chapman was "kind of a self-centered young man" and active in his defense. The late Bill Kolius of Amarillo defended him.
Comer said the four's motive for attacking Oliver was inconsequential.
"I can just see them sitting in that car, and I think it started when Garza said 'I'm gonna kill him,'" Comer said. "I call it a melody of murder. They just orchestrated this out of this ego and machoism.
"The more I thought about it and read over the record, I doubt if any of these defendants, these kids, had they been acting alone, would have taken a shotgun and killed this victim (Oliver)," he added. "But acting together and feeding off each other's ego and machoism or whatever you want to call it, did some planning."
Years later, Comer got a telephone call from Chapman.
"I just want to let you know I'm doing better," Chapman told him.
"I said, 'What are you doing?' and he said, 'I'm a bounty hunter,'" Comer said. "He just wanted me to know that he was following gainful employment and not involved in crime."
Chapman says he wanted Comer to know his life had turned out well.
"I was very ashamed of what happened in Pampa, Texas, and he (Comer) was a very decent guy," Chapman said. "I wanted to call before he left office and say I wasn't all rotten to the core."
Most of the people Chapman knew in Pampa have died, he said. He mostly kept in touch with the late Sheriff Rufe Jordan.
"I know it sounds strange to say, he was like a stepfather to me," Chapman said.
In fact, he said, Comer and Jordan told him that he could do something better with his life.
Shortly after he was released from prison, Chapman got his chance at a new beginning.
His wife, LaFonda, filed for divorce while Chapman was in prison and retained full custody of their two young children. Chapman was struggling to get back on his feet when a judge ordered him to pay thousands of dollars in back child support.
"I told him I wasn't going to pay for it because I wasn't there - I was in prison," Chapman says in a biography on his television show's Web site. "So he said, 'Do you know what a bounty hunter is, boy?' I said yes. He held up a picture and said, 'Can you find this boy? I said yes. He said 'If you find him, I'll pay $200 of your child support.'
"Well I only needed about a week to find this guy. ... My first bounty."
Another success story emerged post-1976
For Fisher, the events of Sept. 15, 1976, were life-changing. She went from a church-going 17-year-old to an adult defendant accused of a serious crime.
Before Oliver's death, Fisher had never had so much as a traffic ticket. She did, however, have a ton of attitude and smoked pot. Her family's wild child, she said.
Fisher was 16 when she met Chapman at Caldwell's Drive-In, a teen hangout. Chapman would drive over on his motorcycle, sit and visit. It was a year and a half before she knew he was a married man.
"He was a skinny little kid," Fisher said.
Chapman, Garza and Kuykendall were in Fisher's car when they went to Oliver's house. She didn't expect a quick trip to steal drugs to turn deadly.
"I thought we were gonna go over there and take what pot Jerry Oliver had and leave," she said.
Fisher served five years probation and then turned her life around. She earned a general equivalency diploma, and her probation officer petitioned Judge McIlhaney to drop her conviction so she could go to nursing school.
"The next thing I knew, I had a paper that said the indictment had been dropped," Fisher said. "I owe those two people my life."
Fisher, a nurse for 25 years, still lives in Pampa and has heard from Chapman sporadically over the years. He's called her twice about a book, and she ran into him coming out the door of the local newspaper office about 10 years ago.
Chapman told her he was living in Colorado, had a bail bond business, and was trying to set up a book and movie deal and asked her whether she wanted to be involved.
"I'm still trying to live it down here in Pampa and you moved off, and now you're wanting to write a movie to talk about it," she recalled telling him.
Of the four involved in Oliver's death, Chapman said he and Fisher had become successful. He said today, neither would have been convicted because they were in the car's backseat when Kuykendall shot Oliver.
But something had to happen to stop his criminal activity, Chapman said.
"And believe me, Huntsville did," he said.
Old associates dubious of Dog's TV persona
Stubblefield and Fisher don't have confidence in Chapman's born-again Christianity, which plays a role in his television show.
"Duane Chapman found Jesus on the Gray County jail house floor," Fisher said. "He wanted people to think that happened during his arrest. He came out cussing and acting just like he did before."
Chapman brought his wife and two children to see Fisher while she was in jail. She said he told her he'd found Jesus and he'd be around to help with anything she needed.
"Then I watch the show and see this family group saying their family prayers," she said. "Then they do their bounty hunting and just curse like the gutter rats they're picking up.
"What infuriates me is the way he's manipulated the things that have happened to him in his past to make him into this person he is now."
Part of Chapman's persona is reformation, and he believes the life he has led since Oliver's death reflects that. Chapman said he has gone 30 years without a felony conviction.
"No other ex-con has been as successful as I have, legally," he said. "I can't even remember being a criminal. I was a moral criminal, and finally the good morality took over."
A racial slur that got Chapman in trouble with A & E didn't surprise Fisher.
Chapman's well-publicized derogatory telephone rant about Monique Shinnery, his son Tucker Chapman's girlfriend, led A & E to suspend production of his show Nov. 2.
On Nov. 1, Chapman issued a public statement apologizing for his "regrettable use of very inappropriate language."
On Feb. 19, A & E announced "Dog the Bounty Hunter" would return to production.
Filming started Monday in Hawaii, but Chapman doesn't know when episodes might air.
March 4, 2008
I've bought a half-dozen single mp3s from Amazon, and now 'n then they send me a link to some freebies. I d/l several last night and this was one of them. I may very well buy the album.
March 3, 2008
This is today's photo from a feed I have on my Google start page. The website, JS Nature Photo, has some stunning nature photography of Tennessee and Colorado.
I enjoy it and look forward to it each time I enter the page. The feed is seldom, if ever, "down" and loads quickly. They also provide other customized feeds and hosted scripts.
I've taken some not-so-hot deer pictures to post, but this one came from a neighbor.
The caption on the email said this was taken in Eagle River, Wisconsin. These folks put out corn for the deer to eat. (the little piles of dark color in the snow)
You'll need to click the pic to view it in larger detail, but up near the house, at the top left third of the photo, it looks to me as though that's a wolf and just to the right of him, a huge bobcat/cougar.
March 1, 2008
The song is playing on the radio as Gilmore, in a fantastic performance by Tommy Lee Jones, is being driven to another building where he is to be executed by firing squad.
I voted yesterday; absentee voting here in Texas was all this last week and I wanted to make sure I got mine in just in case I couldn't vote next Tuesday, March 4th.
I don't mind announcing to the world for whom I cast my vote: I registered as a Republican so I could proudly select Ron Paul, even though I'd bet a thousand dollars (more if I had it) that he'll not come remotely close to securing the party's nomination.
It was also important to me (and my fellow Texans) that I vote on the three Ballot Initiatives; two were concerning illegal immigration * (I voted "Sí " ) and the other concerned limiting govt. agencies and their budgets. (nutshell synopsis, sorry. Again, a "yes" vote from me)
*Actually, only the first specifically targets IA; the second was about requiring ID in order to vote. To me, the two are closely interconnected. The third was also couched in such language "except in case of emergency" and I figure it won't have much "tooth" to it.
I left every state race "blank", that is, I cast no vote on them. It's my own form of term limits initiative / protest vote and I've never liked seeing anyone run unopposed. I generally vote for the Libertarian candidate in the state races in the General Election. (Railroad Commission, elected judges, offices like that.)
I voted against the incumbent in the senatorial race, and that is one I wish I had researched more (read: some, any) before I went and voted. Be that as it may, both were Republicans so there surely wasn't but a nickle's difference - or less - between the two.
It's been a while, but I have been known to register as a Democrat in order to vote for a particular local candidate running for city or county office. I did that several times in order to help out someone I knew who held county office and was doing a good job.
Being a rare exception of not voting for incumbents, I voted for a friend of mine in a county race even though she was the only one running for the office; she's doing a great job and is honest to the utmost. She and I spoke a couple of years ago about not voting for certain offices and she agreed with me it sent a message to candidates running unopposed.
For example, if a thousand votes are cast in the election and the candidate had no opposition and received only something like 400 votes in the primary, it showed that even the candidate's own party base was dissatisfied. I can only hope that state and national politicians can see the same thing.
I do not reside in the precinct, or I'd have liked to have voted in a local constable race. One man, Don Fletcher, is running in order to help abolish the office; he won the election last time on that platform and as soon as he was elected, he resigned the office. If the post isn't filled for seven consecutive years it's permanently abolished and would save local taxpayers the sum of $42k annually, the budget for the position. Fletcher wouldn't have run for office this time, but another man, Curtis Broaddus, filed and he was forced to file again.
Read more at the Pampa News website
(I have some opinions about that, and the doofus who is trying to milk the taxpayers for a cushy job, but will withhold them for now. I'll update after the election in another post. )
The funny thing was when I went to the Courthouse to vote, there were two tables, Dem. and Repub. and the latter's line stretched all the way out into the hallway and there was no one at the former. In fact, the election officials, four nice older ladies, switched right in the middle of my registering because the Republican table had been so busy the women needed a break.
A man right behind me and I had been chatting a little bit while waiting in line, and he asked if I had ever voted with the new electronic machines they were using. I told him I had once, but didn't like it, we needed a "paper trail", hanging chads and all. He agreed, and when it came time to vote, I asked for a paper ballot. The woman looked a "little" perturbed, but complied with my request. Immediately, the guy behind me chimed in "I want one, too!"
Within seconds, the same refrain went all the way back down the line, at least to the ones in earshot. "Me, too!" "Yeah, I don't like them machines, either." People coming from already voting were clamoring "Hey, I didn't know we had a choice!"
Now the look towards me was a bit more than a "little"perturbed.
That's OK; I've seen that look on women's faces before: my ex-wife's, my mom and sister's, various girlfriends, sales clerks and waitresses, etc. I'm really not a perturbing sort of guy, but it's my delivery, I'm afraid. I start off being super-nice and cordial, polite to the nth degree, then I screw up their expectations by insisting upon something that is going to cause them some grief and/or extra work.
Doesn't help much even if you keep smiling at them; you've done screwed up with them, horsefly.
Leap Year/Day was almost over before I noticed the date and I wouldn't have noticed except I got my cable and gas bills a day "earlier" than expected and that Carol Paul (Dr. Paul's wife) was celebrating her b-day yesterday.
It reminded me of one of my best friends; his granddad was born on Leap Year and I remember his family getting together to celebrate his 21st birthday. Now, the man was turning 85 years old, but he had only celebrated 20 "real birthdays" in the past, that is, the day on which he had been born had only "come around" every four years.
I once dated a woman who had a delightful little girl and she too had been born on Feb. 29th. I helped her mother with a birthday party, the girl's "second" birthday. (she was turning nine)
Being born on Leap Year would be much better than being born on Christmas Day, I think. No parents are going to deny their child a birthday except for every four years, but being born on a major holiday would be a bummer, what with one's birthday being pushed to the side in favor of Christmas.
At least you could save on candles.
I remember a time when I was in the third grade (I think) It was a leap year and one of the guys in the class ahead of me stopped me in the hallway and asked me what was 8 times 8.
Was this some sort of hazing? I started to panic. Was he trying to trip me up, make me look foolish? (he wouldn't have had to asked a question, just hung around me for a day, he'd seen plenty of foolish stuff)
"Uh....sixty-four?" I answered tentatively. I wasn't for sure; math never was my strong suit.
"Nope." he said, while unwrapping a piece of hard candy. (Jolly Ranchers, remember them?) I waited, figuring the punchline would involve some sort of upperclassman oneupmanship on me. Rolling the candy around in his mouth, he replied with a cinnamon-scented rejoinder:
"Nope." he repeated "Eight times eight is 65."
"It's leap year, after all."
I ran across this sticky in another Blogger site while researching a local news story. I was suprised to see it at such an advanced level. (I had another similar sticky a few months back; it showed the "worth" of one's blog and mine never got above $0.00)
After submitting this site's URL, I got the code, then decided I'd go back to looking at the other websites that referenced the story of which I was wanting to learn more. I found a website that had some information that pertained to what I was seeking, then noticed that it linked to the one I had just visited.
Seems that the two sites have been fighting; one is a left-wing nutjob and the other is a right-wing wacko
Drama, don'tcha just love it?