Saturday, July 31, 2004

Now just wait a @!#% minute. I received an invitation to join AARP today. I'm not 48 yet.

Friday, July 30, 2004

Lucy has been down. She has a bad foot. I think she hurt it playing.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

I've added Kitchen Hand to the blogroll, for my convenience. The blog is really titled "What I cooked last night", but that doesn't fit (in the roll, I mean).
On another note entirely, this handsome guy is due for an appearance on "The View" Thursday.
I watched Teresa Heinz Kerry's speech last night. She rambled.

It's evident that she has spent little time in the south, if her remarks about women being heard are taken at face value. Women I know have no trouble speaking their minds, and there's hell to pay if the audience isn't listening.

I always get a little nervous when extremely wealthy people begin talking about alternative energy and energy use. I remember Barbra Streisand recommending that women use their dryers less and hang their laundry outdoors during a recent summer. One of her closets is probably larger than my house.

All in all, Ms. Kerry seemed a nice enough lady, if distant. Apparently, she has a great reputation as a philanthropist in Pennsylvania.
George Jones sausage has now hit our supermarket shelves. We'll try some with biscuits in just a few minutes.

Sorry, Pops. George says it's "pure pork, no possum".

UPDATE: Good stuff. It didn't shrink to nothing during cooking, doesn't seem filled with pork snouts, and the herbs visible in the raw product impart good flavor.

Monday, July 26, 2004

"Wisdom and strength are not opposing values," is the line that Howard Fineman picked out of Bill Clinton's speech as the best. The line is true. I'm not sure that Bill Clinton was the best person to deliver it.
Patti LaBelle ain't never gonna be Aretha Franklin.
I have a partial solution for this "nucular" problem we have in this country. Emulate the southern lady. Nu-clee-uh. Practice. "Nu-clee-uh".
How was the Boston butt?

It was meltingly tender and juicy, but Lyman wasn't satisfied with the seasoning. One of these days he'll learn to keep to the plantation where cookery is concerned. Bill's Butt Rub is a California concoction.

We find that we are seldom satisfied with recipes from other parts of the country. No aspersions on others' cooking skills, but this is Louisiana, after all.
Drats! I just received a notification that my e-mail to "wifeseekslover" was returned undeliverable. Maybe the attachment will explain ...

Saturday, July 24, 2004

One of the disconcerting things about the Electus parrot is the occasional "freeze" when the bird will stop and stay stock still in a position for several minutes.

Lucy did that last night. She was watching us in the kitchen, in a sort of crouch, and froze in that position. She did not twitch a feather or react to speech or movement for seven minutes that I timed, and one or two on either side of that.

Eclectus are prey birds and the freeze is thought to be a defense mechanism. "What? Me? I'm a blossom."

Friday, July 23, 2004

Ken Layne is back, and going after armchair opinionators in Bloggerville. He wants bloggers on the streets gathering information. Glad to read him again.

Thursday, July 22, 2004

For Possumblog's Thursday Three:
1) My first love was a boy of seventeen who was handsome, intelligent, musical, witty and jealous of my attention. No need to be jealous.

2) Lyman has a brilliant sense of humor that offsets my sometimes low moods.

3) We bought a fabric art piece, 54" x 78", made in Zimbabwe, at a zoo on the coast of Florida. It is a village scene produced using techniques of batik, stamping and painting, with bright colors and emphatic visual rhythms. I would hate to lose it.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Lyman trimmed our bay tree a couple of evenings ago. We have bay leaves bundled for friends and family.

Which brings to mind the year I was "Cucumber Girl".

Lyman planted several cucumber plants that bore like crazy, more than we could imagine eating or canning. When we were overwhelmed I put the cucumbers in a basket, slung it over my shoulder, and went from door to door.

Plenty of neighbors know me, but some further up the street don't.

Knock, knock.

"Excuse me. I'm sorry to bother you. I'm Janis Gore, Lyman's wife, at --------- Street, and we have grown too many cucumbers. Would you like some cucumbers?"

I was received well. They were good cucumbers.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

What a pleasant time. The sun had dropped in the sky. The live oaks cast long shadows. Lucy sat on her little perch on the table. I rocked in the patio chair and shelled garden baby butterbeans.

Monday, July 19, 2004

You can't do anything with a city girl.

Glenda, my schoolteacher friend, came by today with a bagful of pods.

"What are these?" I asked. "They look like sugar peas."

"I thought you liked these. I brought you some last year. You said you loved them."

"But what are they?"

"Look here." She popped one open. "They're baby butterbeans."

"Oh, you brought them shelled last year. I didn't know what they look like in the pod."
Lyman is eager to use his new smoker. He has seasoned it per instructions and is ready to experiment with a Boston butt, using a recipe from a forum on smoking meats: Bill's Butt Rub.

Is that anything like Boudreaux's Butt Paste?

Will Lucy's next word be 'butt'?

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Lucy is three years old today. Happy hatch day, Lucy!

Friday, July 16, 2004

Sometimes good things happen to good people. This time, good news goes to the Bird Whisperers.
When we left the Fish House restaurant after lunch the other day, Charles offered Patricia and me a piece of Altoids mint chewing gum to refresh us on our way to the museum. About 3/4 of the way there, the gum had lost its flavor. Charles doesn't keep a trash receptacle in his pristine car. I had no paper in my little knock-off Dooney & Burke pocketbook.

During the search for a tissue or a receipt or a deposit slip to wrap the tasteless gum in, the logo popped off the front of the pocketbook. It's about the size of a half-dollar coin.

Yes, I did. It seems to be holding very well.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Must say, other things being equal, I like my doctors handsome.

Dr. Whittaker, the optometrist, fills that bill more than adequately - carved jaw, pretty long-lashed brown eyes and deep dimples. He might have a drop or two of Cajun in him.
We have gone from torrential rains to oppressive heat. Lyman's weather station reported yesterday that the high temperature was 97 degrees with a heat index of 113. The heat index at 11:21 a.m. on Thursday is 110 with a real temp of 93.

The white trim of the house is gray with mildew.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

The Sweet Potato Puffs at Land of Vos might be a treat for Lucy's hatch day.
Lucy went with me to deposit a check at the bank drive-through. One of the tellers asked how old she is.

Lucy turns three on Saturday! It's party time!

What am I going to cook?
My gosh, that little trip turned into an expensive one.

Let's see:
One set of bocce balls - $89.95 + shipping

One Bradley Smoker - $571.96

Four cookbooks on sausage and smoking foods - about $100

One hamburger press - $19.95 + shipping
Lucy didn't buy those things. I didn't buy those things.
What, you ask, are these "sisterly relations" of which you speak?

They go something like this:

"There are some interesting things in that box in the bathroom."

Patricia gets a starter set of bareMinerals makeup.

"The school teacher who lived in this house wasn't much of a housekeeper. This kitchen sink is terrible."

Patricia's sink sparkles with the help of a couple of products and elbow grease.

"Charles hasn't come to see my new house."

Charles comes smiling to dinner on Sunday.

"I strained my back at the lake. The only thing that helps is Mr. Thumper. Did you ever get another Mr. Thumper? You didn't? You're going to take Mr. Thumper, aren't you?"

Patricia keeps Mr. Thumper.

It sounds one-sided, doesn't it? But that doesn't include stifling teary laughter at the Modern. Patricia has no reverence at all for modern art. She read the description of a molten mass of plastic in one corner, the artist's largest commission to date. "Screwed again!" she said.
Ah, yes. So she is a Russian princess.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Well, now. The gathering fizzled.

There are nine teams in Lyman's fantasy baseball league. Two owners live out of town, in Nashville and Orange, Texas. Another called last night to say that he had a meeting with the man this evening who is going to clear his lake camp of the shoddy old cabin that sits where he wants to build a new one. Then another called today to say that he and another owner need to be present at play-off games for 9-12 boys' baseball. Another is snowed under at work. Lyman is trying to reach the other two.

Not to mind. The house is tidy and clean, and we have fixin's for hamburgers for several weeks.
When we visited the cemetery, we found a sad mystery. There were four stones together for four sons, born in '44, '46, '48, and '50. One died at 10 years old, one at 12, one at 15, and one at 20.

When we discussed it with Charles, he suggested that it might have been a gene for cystic fibrosis or some other such disease. Polio was a thought, but two of the deaths were in the mid to late '60's.

There was a marker for the parents - Bullock was the name - but no death date was engraved for either of them.

No death date was engraved for my mother, either. It's been more than a year.

Monday, July 12, 2004


Hey again. I took a nap. Patricia rises early. This morning, wake-up time was 4 a.m. We took our coffee outside and watched the day break. I was on the road at 6:30.

Wonderful driving conditions all the way, with very little traffic. Rather than looping down past Alexandria as I usually do, I turned east at Nachitoches and drove through the Kisatchie National Forest. I can't say how many minutes or miles that detour added to the trip, but it was pretty. I never knew Louisiana had so many hills.

The weekend went much as planned, though we never visited the Nasher. My, but it was hot, and our backs and feet reached their limits with the Kimbell and the Modern. While it was a trip for me, it was also Patricia's rest time.

We enjoyed meeting the Aardvarks. They were the first bloggers I have met in person. Because we know quite a bit about one another through our writings, conversation was easy. Something I learned is that the Aardvarks are babies, too. I regret to say that I didn't ask how many Mrs. A came from, but LittleA is the baby of six. I am the baby of seven. What I didn't ask LittleA was if he could shed some light on why the traffic was so thick on I-30 between Dallas and Ft. Worth at 2:00 on Friday.

We didn't go to Central Market. Saturday evening we walked the block from Patricia's place to one of two Italian restaurants for dinner. The food was good and the prices were cheap. We bypassed the Italian ice shop. I don't expect to do that again, if it survives. Business didn't look good for a warm evening. Those Atkins people are going to ruin it for the rest of us.

We also didn't visit Patricia's son. We called, but he suggested that we do it another time. It was our considered opinion that his apartment was probably a pigsty.

Charles hadn't seen Patricia's new house, so we invited him to sup on Sunday on spinach salad with bacon, tomato, and gorgonzola cheese. The salad went over well with the sibs.

I lived with Charles for most of ten years, but locations and circumstances have prevented Patricia and I from enjoying much in the way of sisterly relations over the years. We like time together. She's planning to come here in October for the balloon race.

Now on to tomorrow's party.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Today is prep day for a trip to Dallas tomorrow. Lyman will stay here with Lucy.

My sister, brother Charles, and I plan to visit the new modern museum in Ft. Worth on Friday, perhaps take a turn through the Kimbell, then meet a couple of aardvarks for dinner downtown.

Saturday, Patricia and I intend to take the light rail (Hey, what is that Taste of Dallas thing?) to downtown Dallas to visit the Nasher and whatever else takes our fancy. We are considering the prepared foods section of Central Market for dinner.

Sunday we will visit the cemetery where our parents are buried, where we'll leave flowers and do a final check of the engraving on the marker. Then perhaps a visit to Patricia's son, who for a month has been nearly incapacitated with a badly broken ankle.

Monday, I'll drive home and immediately start helping Lyman with preparations for the gathering of his fantasy baseball league buddies here on Tuesday to watch the All-Star game.

Looks like fun.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Debra and Craig Johnson of J-Birds have written a brief article here about Eclectus parrots. Lucy is a Solomon Island Eclectus.

The authors do not go into the phenomenon of the bird sitting on the edge of her cage screaming and laughing like a little girl being chased while her housemate is on the telephone.

They also don't talk about how the brats will fake an emergency screaming bout to bring their owners into the room double-quick, only to find the bird preening.

Monday, July 05, 2004

Well, dayum. We made it from 3 on Friday until now without rain. The flotilla on Lake St. John and the festivities and fireworks at the riverside went off without drowning on Saturday.

But those yellow-bellied Doppler gangers have coalesced over us and now in 10 minutes we have .3 inch.

Finish at .45 inch.

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Our local McDonald's burned nearly to the ground last night. Reports are that the fire occurred at or about 10 p.m., but I don't remember sirens.

Lucy and I drove by to take a look today after my mother-in-law told us it had happened. Only a scorched shell was left, with smoke rising from the interior.

I'd be surprised if this were some kind of protest. Insurance? An angry employee? An accident? Negligence?

No one was injured, as far as we know. The gossip wheels are turning in this small town. We'll find out more tomorrow.

UPDATE: The fire occurred at 2:40 a.m., according to the local paper.

Happy 4th! J-Birds has a good picture.

Friday, July 02, 2004

Ack! Sunshine! My eyes!

UPDATE: Never mind. I put biscuits in the oven just as the rain started. The biscuits (11 minutes) aren't done yet and we've had half an inch of rain. Rainfall rate at this moment is 4.65 inches per hour.

When the timer went off for the biscuits we had .78 inch of rain.

Up to 1.50 and still pouring.

Lyman's 40 tomato plants need from 1 to 1-1/2 inches a week.

We heard a cropduster flying the Claytons' soybeans this morning. That's money gone.

1.75 after 33 minutes.

We're at a sprinkle now. After 50 minutes we're showing 1.98 inches.

Just a little summer shower in the South.

Thursday, July 01, 2004

The Possumblog Thursday Three:

1) I was cast in a small part in a student film having something to do with an art museum. I was about 21 and don't remember a thing about the plot. I hope it was supposed to be set in Texas because we darned sure talked like Texans.

2) I have nevah considered writing a screenplay of any kind.

3) The only actor I would consider for this category is actress Dorothy Lamour. I'm still looking.

Being on the film set was one of the most boring days of my life, and I've had a few.

This story of a man's collection of "things" is uncomfortably familiar.

(Link via Obscure Store)