Around....

.... woke up this morning with an earworm that I haven't been able to shake all day long......

.... sure, it's a beautiful song.... and yes, the singer's voice is enthralling..... and yes, I'll even concede that the musicians are masterful with their interpretations & more than efficient in their delivery.....

... but honestly?..... having Harry Connick Jr. in your head for an entire day begins to get you a bit rattled about three hours in......

.... besides, we are talking about MY head..... so I imagine it wasn't all that great of an experience for him either.......

... but still, though.... I hope you enjoy what I've been whistling all morning.......

.... oh, and before I forget, this right here??...... ohhhh, there will be payback...... oh yes..... most definitely.....

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Species

.... whilst plowing through my usual morning reading today, I happened to read the following little tidbit in the March 2009 issue of Smithsonian.... check this out....

SPECIES HOT SPOT

Between 1997 and 2007, more than 1,000 species previously unknown to science were discovered in Southeast Asia's Greater Mekong region, according to a report by the World Wildlife Fund. That's about two new species a week. The Greater Mekong has the highest concentration of different ecosystems in mainland Asia, and the Mekong River supports more wildlife per square mile than the Amazon. Newly documented flora and fauna include.....

.... blah, blah, blah.... the article then went on to list some snakes, a bat, a millipede, and a bunch of flowers and stuff.... but, hey, that's not the point!!....

.... what IS the point then, you ask?.... well, how about two new species a WEEK for ten years!??.... good god, people, that's just amazing..... damn, I hope they find a Bigfoot.....

.... anyway, I'm sitting here picturing an army of pith-helmeted Cornell University grad students wandering around in the jungle picking up every little creature they see, sticking it in a jar, and then laboriously pouring over giant tomes back at base camp to see if they've found something new...... another day, another two species!....

Brittney: "WOW, Chad!.... I found a new kind of slug that only eats the right-hand side of wild Mekong bananas!.... What'd YOU find?"

Chad Gumprecht: "uggghhhhh.... I found a new kind of snake.... it's a pit viper, I think.... uhhhhhhggg..... I'm gonna call it Gumprecht's Green Pit Viper..... urgle urgle.... pity no one has any Gumprecht's Green Pit Viper anti-venom, though....*thump*."

... I jest, of course.... but as a rule, aren't there some things in a jungle that you're just not meant to go poking with a stick?.....

.... ahhh..... but that's just me being jaded, of course.... they are, after all, scientists...... and they're doing good work....... and hell, if I'd taken a different path early on, who knows?.... I might be out there wading through the Mekong flipping over rocks with Brittney & Chad.....

... but, good god.... two new species every week for ten years?...... that just blows me away....

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Range.....

.... The Missus and I spent most of the morning exercising three of my handguns at a nearby indoor pistol range... and a good time was had by all.....

... she preferred my little Beretta Cheetah .380.... both because of its pop-up breech loading system, AND because it was the lightest & had the least recoil.... and at 20 feet, she was quite accurate..... I preferred my Beretta Cougar .45 ACP, but hell, I'm a foot taller than her and outweigh her by 80lbs, so that kinda makes sense...

.... I did my party-trick near the end of our day, and issued headshots to the target (firing from a rest position) at the maximum distance.... about 50 feet...... for that, though, I used my Taurus PT92-AFD 9mm - a pistol that I have owned since 1991.... all in all, not a bad way to spend a Thursday morning.....

..... I will say this, though..... cleaning that damnable Cougar is a complete pain in the ass...... that whole "floating barrel" assembly is an exercise in balance that having hands slicked with gun oil certainly doesn't help.... but anyway, it is a beautiful piece of engineering..... I just hate putting it back together......

..... so, yeah...... all weapons have been cleaned and placed back into their usual nooks and crannies around the house.... and the smell of gun oil is thick here in the blogroom........

... my fingers are sore from loading magazines for two hours..... but all in all, things are just as they should be..... a day spent on the range is a good, good day......

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Kings.....

..... what is it that you call those little grand birthright caveats that you sometimes see after a name?...... such as Eric, Esquire?........ or Eric, Gentleman?..... don't they seem just wonderful?...... I still get mail occasionally from The Bank of Scotland with regards to some overseas investments addressed to Eric, Esq.. ....

..... as for me, I just don't know what exactly they're called...... but whilst sipping my morning coffee just now, I happened to see one of my ancient ancestors in wikipedia - and he had the most remarkable little tail tacked on to his name according to a linked British Civil War's website.....

.... check this out, folks....... John Lisle, Regicide......

.... heh.... looks like at least one of my ancestors was a very, very naughty boy..... I mean, c'mon..... regicide??..... AND he administered The Oath of Office to Oliver Cromwell after Charles I's head had been separated from the rest of him......

..... I wonder if the title of "Regicide" can be passed down from generation to generation?..... I think it'd be kinda cool to start signing my official documents as Eric the SWG, Regicide.....

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Knights.....

.... I woke up quite early today, and tired of the news immediately.... the false concern of the beefcakes and baby dolls nearly put me right off my coffee & English muffin...... so as you do once your fed up, you flick the channel...... just as I did.....

.... and a fortitudinous & fortunate flick it was, boys & girls...... for I found that "The Man of La Mancha" was just beginning....... good lord, I watched every single moment of it with a smile & a sip of coffee...... I mean, just check out this magnificent scene with Mr. O'Toole......

..... the Quote of The Day, gentle rubberneckers??..... ".. too much sanity may BE madness"..... indeed......

..... and added to the general romance of Don Quixote's tale?.... well, quite possibly the best love song ever written.... "Dulcinea"....

.... and the kicker?...... "The Impossible Dream"...

..... what a wonderful morning of music & thought.....

..... and it sure beat the hell out of watching The News....

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Dinner.....

... mmmmm...... lamb.....

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Hair.....

.... I wandered into town to visit my friendly barberess, Eva, around lunchtime yesterday..... and she was, as usual, spry & entertaining..... herself getting on in age, she bounced around her elderly patrons snipping, combing, spraying, and massaging...... and in the end, each dusty old Southern Belle left satisfied (and quite buzzed from the cloud of hairspray fumes they'd just inhaled courtesy of Eva...)....

..... I arrived at my appointed time, of course.... but was still forced to wait for a bit while the thinning head of someone's Great Grandmother had the final touches performed upon it..... I picked up her purse for her as she struggled to manhandle her walker, and opened the door for her as she toddled out to her middle-aged daughter's Land Cruiser...... and then, as you do, I sat myself down in the old, faux-leather spinning chair for my three-dollar haircut......

..... I've written about a few of my trips to Eva's place in the past...... one here.... and one here...... and here, and here...... and it truly is a treat to sit and watch as Events Unfold at her business....... to be privy to the gossip and stories of those ancient Southern women, well, every single time is a gem......

.... today, though, there was little drama and even less gossip..... I'd planned on rushing back home anyway, so we were All Business......

..... instead, the drama today occurred once The Missus arrived home from work.....

..... I met her at the door, and she took one look at my 0-1.5" strawberry roan military fade and baulked noticeably...... I laughed.....

..... I took the rebuff in stride, of course, and went on through to make her a glass of wine...... but once we'd ensconced ourselves on the couch, she turned, looked at my bare noggin, reached up - almost as if to touch it - and said, "when, oh WHEN are you going to get a MODERN haircut!?".......

..... a modern haircut?!?....... good lord!...... what the hell is a Modern Haircut?....... I've had the same haircut for the past 18 years!!........ I'm thinking that a "modern" haircut is going to involve daubing some sort of "product" on my dwindling hair to create a "modern" man-scaped hair sculpture!....... and I'm just not sure that that'd be my style...... or lack of style, if you tend to lean that way........

..... sure, I can dress for an occasion when it arises.... I own lots of suits..... a tux...... hell, I even sport a silk Punjabi once in a while...... but day in and day out, I'm a boots, jeans, and tee-shirt guy....... the guy with short hair that doesn't even need combing....... so I can't help but wonder what wide, swinging tangent this "modern" haircut thing swung in on..........

... she must have been reading Cosmopolitan too much lately....... and become enamored of a meterosexual, or something...... I shall have to investigate and find out....... either way, the line "you look like you just stepped out of a Normal Rockwell painting" was uttered yet again..... as was, "you look like an extra for an old WWII film!".....

.... hey, who knew haircuts could be so unexpectedly controversial!?!......

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Animals...

..... 'The Golden Compass' is playing on HBO right now...... they're all quietly mumbling away about Demons daemons, and whatnot while I try to finish some work here in the blogroom..... it's an interesting distraction here on this windy, rain-flecked, overcast day...... demons daemons are not your usual daily fare..... well, at least not around here........

... evidently all of the characters have little animals that embody their souls.... and they follow them around wherever they go...... fireflies, puppies, kittens, monkeys, birds, etc..... Daniel Craig's "daemon" appears to be a snow leopard.....

.. I've always admired snow leopards..... majestic, mysterious beasts that they are..... almost sensuous in the way that they walk and stalk...... Daniel Craig?.... not so much....... besides, people keep telling me that I look like him, and that just freaks me out....... he's buff, sure.... but when I look in the mirror, I certainly don't want to see myself as quite that Craigy craggy..... then again, it ain't the age, right?..... it's the mileage...... so, yeah.... we have the same color of hair, I'll concede that......

.... while working here - with that movie on in the other room - I couldn't help but notice the life-size plastic Gila monster sitting atop my computer monitor gazing down at me........ I have a few, actually...... Jose, up there.... and Phil, over there on the shelf...... gifts all, funnily enough, from The Missus........

.... I made the mistake once of telling her - way, way back in the mists of time - about an Indian guy I was in The Corps with who once told me that he had went to a sweat out in Utah and saw my "spirit animals" in a vision....... he and I were good friends, and evidently he thought of me after having found his OWN "spirit animals", and felt the need to tell me all about it once he returned to our base in Alaska......

.... I thought it was interesting at the time, you know?...... wandering the mountains in winter, getting naked, throwing some sage on the fire, whacking yourself a few times with some eagle feathers, climbing inside a homemade sauna, a little chanting, and then letting yourself get dehydrated enough to start having hallucinations?.... hell, that's practically a blogmeet........ throw in some peyote, and I'd imagine it would be an absolutely GRAND time...... but anyway, yeah...... "spirit animals"......

..... I have two, evidently........

..... any guesses?..... apart from the Gila monster, obviously.....

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Clean.....

.....I read this earlier this afternoon, and I could not agree more...... as head chef cook and bottle washer around here, I run a pretty tight ship...... not that I am a clean freak at all, but I do tend to lean towards the "tidy"...... both bathrooms are cleaned every Saturday (due to the fact that my Mother is currently enjoying a standing invitation to Saturday dinner here every week)..... and the rest of the house gets a once-over every couple of weeks..... and every October before all of the bloggers arrive, the entire house gets a complete scrubbing.......

.... but as with any household, there are exceptions to The Rules.... as an example, the blogroom/manroom is hardly ever cleaned.... that said though, I really don't do much in the blogroom that will cause the accumulation of much nastiness...... I will say that there is an absolute beauty of a cobweb in the northwestern corner between the wall and the side of my gun cabinet - and it is off limits to all cleaning..... after 8 years of growth, it's practically a buddy of mine now..... and quite pleasant to look at while pondering various complexities - or when you're just of the mind to pause and wonder.....

.... the other exception is my kitchen sink..... you show me someone who'll let fungus grow in their kitchen sink, and I will show you an absolute waste of oxygen..... dishes in there overnight?... no problem... sure, I've been known to do that from time to time...... BUT, once a day my kitchen sink gets a complete scrub-down..... year before last, Santa Claus even brought me a sparkling new ceramic sink to replace the old stainless steel one..... I suspect that he did that hoping to curtail my sink-washing activities.... (I washed that damn stainless sink at LEAST three times a day because it just always looked dirty..).....

... El Capitan is right about another thing, as well..... it is simply Not Cool to visit someone's house and comment on the state of their baseboards.....

... anyhoo, go over and pat El Capitan on the back for not wanting to scrub too hard...... I suspect he needs a hug.....

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Reading.....

..... I heard yesterday that President Andrew Johnson never had a day of schooling in his life..... AND he taught himself to read.......

..... good god.....

.... how does a man begin to teach himself to read?!?......

.... I'm sorry, but that's just weird.....

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Dreary......

..... had to run to town a couple of days ago on a grocery run and decided to dip off the main road for some curves on the way back home..... here's the result.....

.... name that tune, anyone?......

..... goodnight, y'all..... I'm off to grill sausages and gaze approvingly at Sylvia's rear quarter panel.....

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Opera.....

.... we arrived home just after midnight last night after having thoroughly enjoyed a Night Out at the Opera...... and really?.... there is no finer venue to watch anything than The Tennessee Theatre in Knoxville, Tennessee....... the building is absolutely stunning inside..... and the theatre is truly, truly grand...... I can't even imagine what it must have been like to pay your nickel back in the day, walk into that magnificent foyer, climb the steps and sit back to watch "Gone With the Wind" or "Casablanca"....

... our modern movie theatres today are things of convenience & technology..... but a REAL theatre?.... the kind of theatre that folks visited in hushed whispers when Movies were King?....... well, they are Houses of Worship......

.... and from the brass front door to the gilded ceiling, they drip with an incredibly voluptuous grandeur..... not just for The Star, or The Film.... but for The Event........

.... and when you enter the Tennessee Theatre and take your seat, it doesn't matter if you are there for a concert by Buddy Guy, Tom Jones, Willie Nelson, or a production of antiquarian quilt-making techniques from southern Virginiana, you are in for one helluva show...... because you are THERE...... and that venue glows with a sense of pure, unadulterated entertainment..........

..... I've seen folk musicians, blues guys, rockers, and plays there...... and they all have been enhanced simply because of the wonderful building that held them.... but last night?...... well, it was opera...... and I loved it....

...... I did realize something, though..... something that I really hadn't imagined until I saw the first few numbers completed.......

..... see, when someone writes an opera, they don't just write the lyrics and the music to the songs that tell the tale of a story, they take it one step further........ I know that it shouldn't have, but it did - but the fact that the composers took the singing dialogue and scripted it to music as well - well, wow........ sure, there is wiggle room left for artistic interpretation by individual singers to do their thing, but to imagine that a composer took all of the dialogue from an entire story and set it all to His Musical Vision is just amazing......

.... anyway, I'm beginning to ramble....... but I will say this before I head off to the couch for a libation....... art exists in many, many forms..... from opera to quilting..... from gospel to heavy metal....... from sculpture to poetry....... from writing to public speaking........ art is the beauty that surrounds us every day - wherever we may be...... a photograph, a song, a thought that makes you smile....... a vibrato voice that makes your heart pound, or a sandwich On The Square that makes your mouth water in anticipation of every bite.......

...... embrace it all, folks..... gobble it...... chew it....... search for it........ and when you find it, swallow every morsel that you can get your grubby little paws on........... and then tilt your head back and smile........

.... .because, hey, that is what it is all about.........

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Daughters........

..... well, all is fine here........the storm passed without any great damage...... a few downed limbs and a few cuddly bird corpses scattered around the garden, but other than that, everything weathered our little bit of storm rather nicely..... but hey, that is always the way it goes, yes?..

..... tomorrow, on the other hand, should be quite interesting.......

... indeed, tomorrow The Missus and I are off to The Opera in Knoxville...... Verdi's 'Rigoletto', nonetheless......... My First Opera.....

..... nothing like watching a butt-of-every-joke mistakenly find the murdered corpse of his only daughter by accident on a Friday evening, eh?........... ahhh, I'm just being pessimistic, I know...... but still, the singing should be quite good....... and I'm actually quite stoked...... I mean, just check this out.....

..... so....... suit & tie?..... jeans & boots?..... Punjabi & sandals?..... or khakis, a button-down, and saddle shoes?....... cammies?....... ...... I mean, what does one wear to such a tragedy?.......

.... la donna e mobile?............ la blogger e mobile, evidently........

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Battening....

.... it's been unseasonably warm here today.... and the sky has cast gloom since daybreak.... boiling with black, grey, and those tornado-ish yellow/green clouds, the roar of the wind through the trees moves from a low moan to a deep, unearthly growl.....

... sitting here now, the last hangers-on of the leaves that made it through the winter are now being violently snatched from the tree limbs.... they don't fall to the ground, though........ they're ripped off quickly and disappear horizontally deep into the woods....

.... Severe Thunderstorm Warning, Wind Advisory, and a Tornado Watch are all in effect at the moment....

....... so fasten your seatbelts, folks.... it's gonna be a bumpy night.....

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Fish.....

..... I've never been a huge fan of fish..... sure, I'll eat it from time to time, but I don't actively search it out on a menu very often..... and shrimp?.... tasteless little beasties that - were it not for them being a wonderful conveyance for cocktail sauce - would hardly ever be on my menu...... same goes for clams & oysters..... deep-fried with plenty of lemon juice & cocktail stuff?..... oh yeah.... otherwise?... not so much.....

... lobsters and crabs are a different story, though.... and I can eat roughly my weight in snow crab legs or lobster tails..... there's just something wonderful to be said for cracking a beast's joints, wrenching limbs from carcass, and digging out it's flesh that just makes me smile..... and the smell of melted dipping-butter has tweaked my inner Tasmanian Devil since early in my childhood....

.... my goodness..... sitting here thinking back, I reckon that - even though I don't like fish that much - I've still managed to do my fair share to thin out their global population over the years.... I've eaten mackerel, shark, tuna, trout, catfish, haddock, cod, tilapia, monkfish, eels, sardines, flounder, anchovies, halibut, swordfish, bass, sea bass, crappie, bluegill, pike, and grouper..... I've eaten them fried, sauted, boiled, baked, raw, smoked, pickled, steamed, and grilled..... hell, I even ate a sea cucumber once.....

..... anyway, I bring all this crap up only because it was announced tonight that we're having mackerel for dinner......

.... damnation, folks..... mackerel.....

..... I believe that I was scarred early in life when I caught a whiff of a can of sardines that my Grandpa was scarfing down one hot summer day long-ago....

..... but, damn..... mackerel....

.... mackerel is a fish's fish..... tiger striped, torpedo-shaped, oily, and as fishy as they come.... think of a halibut & its flesh - fresh, firm, sweet, clean & fragrant.... and then imagine the absolute opposite in every way, and you've got a mackerel.....

.... that said, I'll still eat it.... and I'll likely enjoy it..... for it did, after all, die for the benefit of my Omega 3's..... and I'll think of it as it swam happily with its friends in the warm, gentle waters off the coast of Spain.... I may even raise a glass in honor of the sacrifice that it made all those weeks ago as it was smoked, filleted, and vacuum-sealed....... I may even bow my head and mutter a little prayer as I lick my lips in anticipation of nibbling her smoky, salty, oily flesh.....

..... but I certainly don't look forward to smelling the bastard bake for fifteen minutes.......

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Leroy.....

.... you know, I've always wondered......

.... and now I know!...

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Feathers.....

..... this is a Public Service Announcement......

.... this afternoon at 2:00pm, the 1939 classic, "The Four Feathers" is airing on Turner Classic Movies....... if you haven't seen it, do yourself a favor and pop the top on your favorite beverage, don your pith helmet, and settle back onto your couch for the afternoon.....

.... I certainly will be.....

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Sausages....

..... today has been a laid back day here... The Missus is feeling a bit under the weather & spent the entirety of the day on the couch (with the exception of moving to the kitchen table and whipping my ass at Scrabble) in her pajamas....... still, though, it was a beautiful day - but cold............

.... anyway, since I don't much feel like writing tonight - and Elisson & The Maximum Leader both seemed interested in last night's dinner here, I guess that I should pony-up and share my meager recipe......

Ingredients:
1 large onion - minced finely
1 green bell pepper - sliced, cored, and made generally edible
1 package of Pepperidge Farms "Hot" Italian sausage - skinned and halved
1 packet of sliced mushrooms
1 tblspn of Worcestershire sauce
1 tblspn of ground black pepper
1 packet of Colman's Sausage Casserole mix
1 can of beef broth
300ml (1/2 pint) of cold water

.... so basically, I just mixed the Colman's powder with the 1/2 pint of water and whisked it up nicely...... then, I skinned the sausages, halved them, and placed them in the bottom of a casserole dish...... I then minced the onion (using a little whirly-bladey thing that I got for Christmas) and scattered that on top of the resting sausages..... then I added the sliced green pepper and the mushrooms....... dusted the whole thing with a few good scrapes of black pepper and a lashing of Worcestershire sauce

... the little Colman's sachet called for 1/2 pint of water...... but upon adding the water to the mix, I found that it didn't quite cover all of the ingredients....... so I added another 1/2 pint of beef broth....... and then covered it & baked it at 350 for an hour and a half......... at that point, I backed off the heat and let it cook another 3 hours at 250.........

..... it looked like almighty hell when I dished it out onto the plate.... but, damn, it was tasty..........

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Sausages......

...... my morning visitors, ladies and gentlemen.......

visitors_small.jpg

... mmmm...... backstrap.....

.... today has been an absolutely beautiful day here at The Compound...... clear, crisp, barely above freezing with a sky the color of a robin's egg.....

.... and tonight for dinner?.... my Scottish sausage casserole..... mercy.... it's hard to have fun in a place like this, but I sure try my bestest......

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Exploring......

..... do those guys at 'MonsterQuest' ever actually find evidence of anything, or is that show simply the biggest tease since that whole Joel/Maggie thing on 'Northern Exposure'?..... I mean, giant eels in The Great Lakes?..... a giant octopus lurking out in the Pacific?...... Big Foot supposedly sighted in nearly every state?.... a friggin chupacabra in Texas?....... after an hour spent watching that crap, they never, ever find it!.....

... Jesus Christ, it's worse than spending 1990 to 1995 waiting for Joel to get Maggie damp enough to mount on prime-time TV......

... having said that, though, MonsterQuest is not without its moments..... for instance, I just overheard some bespectacled expert say, "the oceans are our last great wilderness.... with depths exceeding 30,000 feet, 97% of our ocean's & seas remain unexplored.."

.... 97%.... great, holy Mother of God, people..... why are those idiots hiding in the bushes in Saskatchewan, living on stale peanut butter & jelly sandwiches, and waiting in vain for a 9-foot Big Foot when there could be GODKNOWSWHAT swimming around in the middle of the Pacific Ocean?!?....

.... I know that I'm a bit excitable tonight, and I apologize.... it's just that I have always been a fan of all creatures, great and small..... sure, I hunt them & enjoy eating the occasional one, but I do love to learn about them as well..... I'm the guy who always gets the video bonus questions on 'Cash Cab' about critters.....

... even when I was just a pup, I wanted to be a zoologist..... (an aspiration that was quashed when I first caught sight of an elephant taking a dump at the Knoxville Zoo, but that's for another time.)..... but now?.... I can still see a spotted jungle cat and say, "ooohhh... that's an ocelot!"..... I've even been known to stop while channel surfing and surprise The Missus by saying, "wow!.... what a beautiful Malaysian Honey Bear!"..... her: "WTF is a honey bear?"......

.... so, yeah..... I know a bit about the animals that roam around this planet we share...... and while I am absolutely in love with the whole idea of Stanley wandering around Africa and the whole "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?", those days have passed now...... but I still do love the idea of wandering a jungle - clad in the finest khakis - just to see what is around the next corner....

.... but you know what?..... whatever I found?.... it most certainly isn't going to be a damnable Big Foot, Yeti, Vampire, or chupafriggincabra.....

... the mind boggles, truly....... and I suspect that - in all honesty - the vast oceans are the only place left on earth where we might find ourselves wandering around, exploring, and have the Honest Chance of double-checking our digital camera and screaming, "what the FUCK was THAT?"..... and "that" being a real something that we've never seen before.......

.... but then again, I haven't spent much time in California..... so I might be wrong on the digital camera thing.....

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Numbers....

..... the snow is slowly melting around here.... and I have a huge pot of spaghetti bubbling away on the stove..... and courtesy of ceiling fans and central heating, the entire house smells of warm oregano, basil, garlic, and parmesan......

... I logged on earlier to check my email and just happened to notice that my sitemeter has ticked up to 776,776.... and since that is a pretty cool looking number, I figured I'd snoop around and see who ole 776,776 was....

.... a Googler, of course..... a poor, lost soul who searched for "Ogden Nash Tibet" and found his proverbial Pot O'Gold happily perched at the end of this rainbow....

..... so to you, gentle Googler, I offer you a "you're welcome..... I am most happy to be of service..."

... in other news, there were a few of The Regulars who narrowly missed the cut.... indeed, hits from Oddybobo, Grouchy Old Cripple, Parkway Rest Stop, Irish Whiskey, My Pet Jawa, and Boudicca's Voice all were within 5 hits more or less than the coveted 776'er...... ahhhhh, sigh..... another happy day in blogland......

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Snow....

.... well, The Blizzard of 2009 hit here earlier in the day.... and most of it has already melted away as of 5:30 this evening.... still, though, it was fun while it lasted....

..... I sat in the living room and watched it fall for a while - and then snuck out to the deck and hid under the eaves of the house.... by then everything was covered by about an inch of heavy, wet snow..... it was just below freezing, so I didn't stay long...... but I did stay long enough to be reminded of a sound that I had forgotten..... the sound of snow..... or lack thereof........ with no wind, the flakes came down in the most perfect vertical angle.... absolutely straight down..... and with their size and heaviness, you could actually make out the tiny crunch that each one made as it joined with its buddies....

... no rustling of ground-leaves..... no wind whistling through the bare limbs.... no traffic..... even the birds were quiet - and likely hiding somewhere trying to keep warm and dry..... no noise except for the quiet sound of snowfall...... .damn, I had forgotten how a wet snow like that sounded until today...... we haven't had the ground completely covered in four or five years - until today.....

..... my old 1890 copy of Chamber's Encyclopedia describes the climate of Tennessee as "both mild and delightful." ...... and after an afternoon like this, I have to say that I agree wholeheartedly...... just enough snow to give you a taste.... and the rest'll be gone by noontime tomorrow..... mild & delightful sounds just about perfect.....

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Buzzing.....

..... hola, hammerheads!........ I trust you are all well, happy and properly fed?..... as for me?..... well, I woke up humming this.......

..... you're welcome........ misery loves company, right?..... heh......

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