Friday, May 30, 2008


In 2005 when I finally made the break (, June 5, 2005. Sorry, I can't get this darned thing to link properly to my old blog.) with my hairdresser of 22 years, Mr. Fixit and I have been using the services of one of those express, no appointment needed hair care salon franchises (maybe salon is too strong word to describe this place of business). When Mr. Fixit decided to get a much needed haircut this week, he wanted to go to a real barbershop (the ones with a barber pole outside), not a hairdresser. We discovered that all the barbershops in our town and nearby Clemson had disappeared except for one that is open by appointment only. He decided to drive the 16 miles to the town where he works and find a shop there.

He found one this morning. I waited in the car. When he came out, he had a huge smile on his face. He said, “I had forgotten what it’s like to go to a real barber. Instead of using clippers on the back on my neck, he lathered me up and used a straight razor for the finishing touch. He trimmed my eyebrows and clipped nose hair and ear hair. It was great!”

I was impressed; he hasn’t had as good a haircut in years. And the smell, oh, that smell. You know--that same smell that envelopes every man who has his hair cut in a real barbershop no matter where he may be, from Maine to California and all points in between. My father and grandfather would come home with that same clean smell. That smell is one thing that should never change.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Hugo's Blog

A friend from my high school days forwarded to me some essays written by a schoolmate who graduated a year after we did. They are delightful! I graduated in 1963 so most of his memories that I’ve read are from the late 50’s and 60’s before shopping malls. The setting is a small Kentucky town; I think the population was approximately 5,000. Our graduating class consisted of 40 or so students.

One of the essays describes “Downtown” with its J. J. Newberry and Ben Franklin dime stores. I think every small southern town had one, or both, of these stores. I bought my first lipstick at one. They were wondrous places. You could purchase notions, clothing, cosmetics, toys, candy from the candy counter scooped into small bags, and just about anything else you could need. He describes the hardware store where he bought a BB gun on layaway when he was eleven years old. I remember J.C. Penney with vacuum tubes that magically whooshed your money to some unseen place and returned your receipt and change. I remember “window shopping” at the M & R Shoppe and Barnes Mercantile because we couldn’t afford to buy anything in those stores. We did most of our clothing shopping at Penney’s and Belk; they were a bit cheaper.

He also writes of cruising, drive-in movies, and local bootleggers. He brought back memories of the Dairy Maid and the Kentucky Grill, our favorite hang-outs. I must have driven around the Dairy Maid thousands of times and spent countless hours there taking up a parking place and purchasing no more than a coke. Our little town was a combination of Mayberry and "Happy Days." It was a simpler time of innocence that has been lost forever.

When I asked if he had a blog, he explained that he didn’t. He simply sends his “blog” posts to 75 or so of his friends by email. He is going to add my name to his mailing list. I thought about quoting some of his material here, but he is planning to compile them into a book. I hope he reserves an autographed copy for me!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Can't Beat Us Rebels

After having dug to a depth of 10 feet last year, New York scientists
found traces of a copper-wire system dating back 100 years, and they
came to the conclusion that their ancestors already had a telephone
network more than 100 years ago.

Not to be outdone by New Yorkers, in the weeks that followed, California
scientists dug to a depth of 20 feet, and shortly after, headlines in
the LA Times newspaper read: 'California archaeologists have found
traces of 200 year old copper-wire system and have concluded that their
ancestors already had an advanced high-tech communications network a
hundred years earlier than the New Yorkers.'

One week later, 'The Redneck Rebel Gazette' in Senatobia, Mississippi,
reported the following: 'After digging as deep as 30 feet in a corn field near
Strayhorn, Bubba Johnson, a self taught archaeologist, reported that
he found absolutely nothing. Bubba has therefore concluded that 300
years ago, Mississippi had already gone wireless.

Thanks, Brenda!

Thursday, May 22, 2008


Our azaleas this year were strange. I think it perhaps last years' freeze just after they bloomed affected them.

There was only one single flower on this bush and it had changed color.

This one had lots of blossoms; it's next to the one above with only one flower.

The last bush in the row had no flowers at all.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Tip of the Day for Baseball Umpires

If you are being paid to umpire a sanctioned kids’ baseball game and want to appear professional and inspire respect from spectators and players, maybe it’s not a good idea to wear these during the game.

(Click to enlarge. A bluetooth headset and wireless phone are outlined.)

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

My Friend and Companion

Little Girl on her favorite perch.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

My World - Interesting Sights

These are pictures of a giant skate sitting outside a local skating rink. I find it amusing and fascinating. Yeah, I know it doesn’t take much to amuse or fascinate me. Every time I see it, I wonder about who came up with the idea of a drivable roller skate.

Maybe the owner was sitting in his yard on a hot, lazy Saturday afternoon with the guys in the neighborhood. In the yard sits a VW Bug on blocks. “What are you going to do with your Bug, Ole Buddy?” one inquires.

“Well, my wife says if I don’t get rid of it, she’s going to plant petunias in it and put it next to the pink flamingo and the garden gnome in the front yard.”

“Oh, no! You can’t let her do that. That Bug is a classic. You have to think of something to save it.”

Several cases of beer later, it was decided. It was to be turned into a giant motorized roller skate to advertise the entrepreneur’s latest business venture. After all, how much could it cost to strip the Bug down to basics, design the skate, find someone to mold the fiberglass (I’m assuming the body is fiberglass), and to assemble it?

I’m glad it’s there. I like it even better than the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Coolness and Slo-Mo Replay

On baseball game days, we go over and pick up Noah and Owen from their respective childcare facilities. As we were leaving with Owen today, all his little classmates gave him hugs before he left.

When we reached the car, I said, “Owen, do your friends always give you hugs before you leave?” He replied, “Yeah, almost all the time.”

I said, “Why do they give you hugs?”

He said, “Because they think I’m a cool kid.”

Later, Owen was upstairs looking for his baseball uniform. Just as Jason came in the back door, I heard a scream coming from upstairs. Both Mr. Fixit and I hit the floor running heading for the stairs. Jason was only a step behind. When we determined that Owen was okay, Jason said to us, “Gee, I didn’t know you two could still move that fast.”

Noah said, “I missed it. Can you do it again?”


Every morning Mr. Fixit and I watch “Cash Cab” (perhaps the subject of a future post) on the Discovery Channel. During the program, two self-promotional spots are shown featuring a catchy little ditty that I first heard on a “Barney” program.

“I love tornadoes,
I love arachnids.
I love my magma,
I love the giant squid.
I love the whole world.
It’s such a brilliant place.
Boom-de-yah-dah” etc.

For the next few hours, the melody plays on a continuous loop in my head and just won’t go away. At least I don’t have visions of Barney along with the music.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Letting It All Hang Out

I guess this post makes it official; I am a prude! Women of all ages are making a fashion statement that bothers me a bit. It’s not that I am offended; it’s just some of their clothing choices make me extremely uncomfortable.

I first started noticing more than a year ago that the women on the CSI franchises all wore cleavage-baring tops to work. I mentioned it to my brother, asking him if any of the women in his hospital lab came to work with so much showing and what he would do if they did. Being a typical MALE, he sidestepped the issued completely. When I asked Mr. Fixit what he thought about it, he also avoided the issue.

The last time I went to the hairdresser, the young woman cutting my hair was a big person. She was wearing a scoop-necked tee (I know because I saw it from the back) and an apron. From the front it looked as if she was wearing nothing under the apron except for a very brief bra with half-cups which was visible. Not a pretty sight.

Then there is a mother that shows up at the youth league baseball games who must be about 35 and wears low cut tops and always sits bent over at the waist giving everyone an eyeful. I wonder what her 12-year-old son thinks.

When I was at the vet’s office recently a young woman came in wearing black jeans and a black blouse with a steakhouse logo. I assume she is a waitress. The blouse was opened past the third button, and she was wearing a pushup bra was made her look “unnatural.”

Any time you walk into Wal-Mart you see women of all ages (12 to 70) dressed like this. I see nothing wrong with a little cleavage in the evening for social occasions, but somehow it seems a bit inappropriate in a work setting, at a kids’ baseball game, or just out for a bit of shopping.

Yep, I’ve turned into an old prude!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Noah Baseball

Noah plays coaches pitch ball. After a strike, he rips a line drive directly toward the pitcher causing the coach to roll in the dust.
Noah is quite a player, both as a batter and a defensive player.
(Click on each photo to enlarge.)

Owen Baseball

Owen plays tee ball, but the coach throws a few pitches to each batter before using the tee. Most of these little guys don't need the tee. The first photo shows a strike, and the second shows him crossing homeplate.
These little guys are such fun to watch.

Friday, May 2, 2008

My World - Drought

Even though we have been receiving more rain than usual, the water level in our local lakes is still very low. It has risen quite a bit from the levels of last fall.
In the middle picture you can see the docks on dry land.