Monday, March 26, 2007

Photo Sunday on Monday...

Busy weekend; the boat didn't get wet, but only because yesterday saw 30 mile an hour winds and somehow the idea of whitecaps didn't enthuse me! It's to the point now where we can hook it up and go, and after 11 years or so, that's something!

A week ago on Sunday afternoon while Dottie was at work, I met John and Noel at our county lake's "children's pond" so the kids could bank fish a bit.

I rigged a "bobber rig" for trout, but no one had the patience for bobber watching, they wanted to "cast and crank" so this is Dillon watching me rig a "Beetle spin" for him...

Caleb wouldn't give up his litte "catch-em kit" to let me tie a lure on for him; it may have been safer that way!

Talia may turn out to be the most intent of the three grandkids...

Though it was only in the 50's and the wind was fairly strong, everyone seemed to enjoy the outing!

Which is about as good as it gets, really, in this life!


Friday, March 23, 2007


After playing hookey on Tuesday, when I went back to work one of the girls I stock for asked me if I was "one of the felons". I asked what she meant and she said that the company made anyone who was a convicted felon take Tuesday off (with pay) because they couldn't be in the building when Bush was! I told her no, I had a vacation day; I'm not sure she believed me...

Yet I wonder, how many convicted felons are among the appointees in the White House?

The place still smells of sulfur...

Finally though, it's Friday; Dottie is off this weekend, and if the weather cooperates I'll be shaking down the boat tomorrow afternoon or Sunday. We are in a cycle of daily thunderstorms right now (so far no hail or tornadoes), and Sunday they are predicting wind along with the rain, so we'll see how it all works out! I have about half of the reels cleaned, oiled and respooled with fresh line; by the time the weekend is over the rest will be done.

It's been a race; the grass is greener and getting close to needing mowed, and I've been trying to get the boat to the point I can "get it wet" before I have to mow for the first time. Silly, I know, but it's something that never happened even back in the "good old days".

Last Sunday I got the grandkids out to bank fish at the children's pond at our county lake. Before I had the first rod baited the 3 year old was chunking rocks; the wind was up and it was cool that afternoon, mid 50's, so I knew they wouldn't last long. We stayed about an hour and half, and they didn't catch anything, but they did have good time. One of the highlights was a Canadian goose who seemed to think that 3 year old Caleb was a rival for his two "lady friends"; everytime the boy moved the gander raised to his full height, glared and "talked" to him. Had we left him alone, I'm not sure he might not have tried to "herd" him away from his harem!

I haven't uploaded the memory card from the little camera yet, but if there is anything good I'll get them posted Sunday or Monday!

May your weekends be wonderful!


Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Did you vote for Karl Rove?

Because I know for sure I didn't!

If this man gets to make decisions that result in illegal activities, yet we didn't elect him, he can't be subpoenaed or forced to testify under oath, how exactly is he supposed to be held accountable?

I'm sorry I left my last post up for so long. For the first few days every time I came back and read it I got upset all over again. Then when I had finally calmed a bit, I found out "W" was coming to my workplace to take credit for something he had nothing to do with...

It didn't get much play on CNN, I don't know about elsewhere, but if any of you noticed King George visiting auto plants yesterday to tout "his energy program", the Saturn plant he spent 20 minutes in was mine. Walk in, look at a car, and leave...

He spent longer at Ford's Claycomo plant because that was where he made his speech at. He was home for dinner. I wonder how much jet fuel he burned in his 747?

I'm glad I had a vacation day already approved before this was known!

One of my co-workers was working at Shreveport's truck plant several years ago when Bill Clinton came for a visit. From what I was told, he spent 6 hours there, splitting both shifts and actually walking the line and talking to people while they worked.

I never thought I would live to see such hypocrisy in action!


Wednesday, March 14, 2007


is getting the better of me. I'm so tired of people rationalizing their prejudice and discrimination!

I read an article yesterday in which a noted Baptist minister said that if there was a way to genetically modify a fetus to make sure that it was heterosexual that his church would support it enthusiastically. Not even considering that his statement means his acceptance that genetics and not choice are at play here, how would he feel if the word Catholic or (your choice) were substituted for "heterosexual"?

In medieval times people were told that only the clergy needed to be able to read because the populace wasn't smart enough to interpret scripture on their own.

In the 1700's Americans were told that only male landowners were capable of determining who the leadership of our nation should be. They were also told that slavery was a good thing, that it helped civilize savages and make them productive members of society, and that scripture supported those facts!

When railroads were beginning men said that if a woman traveled more than 15 miles per hour she would die because her heart couldn't handle the stress!

Scripture was used in the arguments against giving women the right to vote throughout the world; women should be subservient; men are the decision makers...

People look back on all of these now in dismay and disgust that their ancestors could actually believe all of these things. Yet after the "Chairman of the Joint Chiefs" voiced his views on morality the other day, I heard a "viewer comment" on CNN in which a woman said "I've been told me whole life that homosexuality was wrong, and a sin. It's nice to have someone stand up and say it..."! Does that mean that she's ready to give up her right to vote, to travel, or to read?

People use their upbringing and their religion to support their views of things rather than think about what they truly mean. There are others far more qualified than I to determine whether it's a need to feel superior, or a need for control and power, or just pure cruelty!

People speak of the "founding Fathers" and what they felt and wanted. They mean of course, the Pilgrims (who weren't the first). They say the country was founded as a Christian nation.

The country was founded by people who were not being allowed to worship in the manner they wanted to. How dare anyone try to say a mosque shouldn't be here, or a synagogue? How dare anyone say that I have to attend church, or that should I choose to worship Bast or Brigit or Buddha I am less than they are?

The America I thought I grew up in was one that saw discrimination for what it is, and was dedicated to eradicating it in all it's forms!

The America I thought I lived in was one where you were allowed to determine how you live and I was allowed to determine how I live! Beyond that we would come together for the greater good, be it building schools or roads or libraries, and to defend ourselves from those who wish to enforce their wills upon us! (That would include lobbyists and shareholders, btw!)

Pardon the rant, friends...I've spent months trying to look beyond "the fool on the hill" and the myriad of ills that his "crew" have released on us! I've spent months trying to remain positive in the face of all the negativity that surrounds us like the dark of a moonless night!

That someone can die for this country, yet not be allowed to love and marry the person he or she wants to; that they can die for this country and yet be prosecuted for making love to the consenting adult of their choice ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTS ME!!!!


Monday, March 12, 2007

The whirl...

The weekend was a blur...there are usually too many things and too little time, but this time it just didn't slow!

The grandkids and casting practice went well Saturday morning. We also weighed them and tried on life jackets; we had two from my sons when they were small, nothing fancy, just bright orange Coast Guard approved flotation. Caleb was a bit small for the weight rating and since they didn't have the under the crotch straps, we went to Cabela's partly for one of those, and partly for the things on my list that Dottie didn't know about (I've only done that a few times in 30 years). Of course, you can't buy one pretty new vest for the youngest, so the older two got to pick one as well. We couldn't find one that fit Dottie comfortably there; they were more like a straight jacket than something you'd want to wear.

My $150 trip was over $300 when we left...there's an old adage about a boat being a hole in the lake to pour money into...sometimes it feels that way, and that's a lot of why mine stayed dry for over 10 years!

I wanted to take them bank fishing at the freshly stocked kiddie pond at the county lake that afternoon, but their parents said they'd like to be there for that, so we went home for lunch and some more casting, this time not only with their little Shakespeare "Catch-Em" rigs (Spider-Man, Barbie and Superman) but one of the 10 foot panfish rigs I bought with an under the rod trigger spincast reel as well. The older two did well; at 3, Caleb isn't quite ready for that one yet.

That evening brought a trip to Krispy Kreme to get doughnuts for breakfast, dinner and then bedtime as they were supposed to get up for church the next morning. Sadly, some of the computer system John is responible for didn't like the time-change, so he was programming all night and part of the morning and they decided to get a few hours sleep before my nephew's birthday party in Lawrence Sunday afternoon.

That meant our trip to the box stores and Best Buy, planned for after the kids left turned into one trying to get it all done with them. By taking two to the car while the other person "checked out" we managed and ended up with time to hit the new "Bass Pro" store in that area and get Dottie a vest that actually fit. Wal-Mart on the way home, Dottie fed the kids while I unpacked everything, then their Mom and Dad picked them up to go to Jordan's party while we went and picked up Mom at the nursing home and took her.

My sister has been playing on and I had a copy of a typewritten family history done in the early 80's by one of my great-uncle's kids for his 93rd birthday.
I took it so she could copy it and she was ecstatic to skim some of the stories in it as well as have the data. Dinner, presents, a game of Scrabble and it was almost 8 and time to head for home. By the time we returned Mom and settled her in and got home ourselves it was 10. Then I got to start the weekend's laundry...

Dottie showered and we watched "Battlestar", by then it was midnight and though she wanted to stay up another hour, I talked her into going to bed as neither of us had gotten enough sleep through the weekend. I had planned on sorting tackle and being in bed by 2 myself; by the time I got to a stopping point it was 5am!

Now I have more laundry running, trash to gather because tomorrow is our trash pick-up, tackle boxes to return to the boat and work to get ready for. I'll be blog hopping a bit when I come home tonight and tomorrow and trying to keep my hours more towards the early side (trying to get up around 11 instead of noon like today) because that way it's not such a shock on the weekend, lol!

Dottie's off on Friday, and though I've got a wicked case of fishing fever going, there's an RV show she'd like to go to, so that will probably be my before work activity that day.

May the week be kind to you all!


Friday, March 09, 2007

It's Friday...

O.K., it's 2:30AM and I should be heading to bed, but it's the end of the work week and I'm ready...I've had enough...! If only I didn't have to get up and go to have it be over with!

3 grandkids spending the night tonight and tomorrow. Saturday will find Grandpa in the backyard holding casting practice (better in the driveway than the boat) and letting them climb around in the boat one at a time to let them get used to the idea-and teach them to stay away from the edges! When they tire of that Grandma has some seeds she wants to have them help start in planters for later in the spring, and I will start cleaning and rebuilding reels.

Jordan's birthday party is on Sunday, so we'll be springing Mom from the nursing home and taking her to my sister's for the afternoon.

Hopefully you will all forgive me if I'm not around much 'til next week!

Meanwhile, I keep thinking of an old "friend" who left us a couple of years ago: Harold Ensley. He was "The Sportsman's Friend" and had the first "fishing show" I ever saw. Harold became so well known that he went national. In one episode he took Milburn Stone (Doc from "Gunsmoke") fishing, which led to him appearing on "Gunsmoke" as one of "Festus" cousins. As a boy watching him, I never would have dreamed he would warrant a piece on NPR when his time here was done! Something about 48 seasons of broadcasts, and inventing a genre does that I guess...

He came and spoke at our high school when I was a junior, of growing up and his Mom teaching him to fish; of getting in trouble for coming home with his catch in his pockets and forgetting to take them out when he was 5 or 6...

He was injured in a plane crash in Costa Rica several years ago and that ended his television days, but not his fishing. When Dottie was going through therapy for her hip and knee replacements we were in line at the hospital, she was using a walker and I heard a familiar voice call out that he'd like to trade her out of those pretty new tennis balls (on the feet of her walker). It was Harold Ensley, using a walker himself, and while I stood there awestruck and speechless this wonderful man stood there and talked to her for a few minutes about her surgeries and therapy and making sure she did what they told her to so she would be 100% again. She had no idea who he was until I told her after he walked away.

Harold's theme song was (of course) "Gone Fishin". He would close the show by talking about how his fever was starting to rise and get the best of him and when that happened there was only one thing to do. Then he would put up a wooden sign that said "Gone Fishin"...

I'm almost there...and in my mind I'm gone...already!



Monday, March 05, 2007

'Tis a Lovely Day!

Things seem much brighter today; mainly due to my not being so bright...

Saturday after hanging upside down and pulling old battery trays and charging new batteries, I put the cranking (starting) battery in the boat. After so many years of sitting, the Mercury 50 horse cranked right over (I was afraid it might be locked up, though there was no real reason for it to). It was getting late, and hanging upside down like a bat and dealing with my bifocals is a new experience. When I connected the rest of the wiring, the bilge and livewell pumps all worked, the running lights, the feeds for the sonar units, the horn, everything. The only problem was that the pretty blue LED I had wired in years ago to tell me the bilge pump was on (because sometimes you can't hear it) came on when the switch was turned off! Puzzled, frustrated, tired and aching, I gave up for the night and disconnected everything from the positive terminal, put one of the new trolling motor batteries on the charger and came in the house to eat and spend time with Dottie.

Sunday morning I started a bit slower than I had planned on. I turned on the heat in the garage (it was 30 outside) and then played in the house 'til it thawed a bit. When it did I went out and started connecting one wire at a time to figure out what I had screwed up. I didn't get anywhere at all that way, so I went in the house to get a multi-meter. I had laid my bifocals down somewhere, so took a pair of reading glasses with me. This time when I stuck my head under the deck, I figured out that although I had connected the cables to the outboard correctly, I had reversed the 4 terminal bundles that run everything else! "DC" current being very forgiving, nothing was damaged, thank goodness!

I could hear Fred Sanford's voice (or my Dad) saying "Big Dummy"...

Wiring fixed, it was 50 something outside now, so I swung the two 6 gallon gas cans into the boat behind the batteries and rolled it back out the door. I have a "muff" that you connect to the garden hose and slip over the lower unit to give it cooling water so you can run them if you have to. This was the next test, since the rubber-bladed water pump is 25 years old as well, and I wasn't sure it would still be intact after sitting so long. Turn on the wather, pump the bulb in the gas line to prime the motor, choke it and took about 5 seconds for it to light off, it ran and died twice, then idled like it was new (no more hours than are on it, it practically is)! After about 15 seconds the water pump started spraying out it's little port just like it should; all seems fine! If it makes it through the summer I promised it I will replace it next winter, either learning how to do it myself or paying a Mercury shop to do it...the pump is $60, there are 4 or 5 different manuals in the $30-50 range; I am sure in the shop it would be a $200 job at least. I looked at a new 50 horse Merc at Bass Pro the other night, they are about $3500!

So today, though I'm going back to work, the world is a brighter place! I'm going out now to vacuum all of the dust and debris from the carpet and rewire the trailer connector to hitch to the new truck. After that it's rebuilding reels and respooling them and picking up licenses and permits for us, the vehicles and the boat.

Summer is beginning to look awfully good this year!



Sunday, March 04, 2007

Sunday afternoon...

and I'm in from the garage for a cup of cofee and to thaw a bit. I've been lying upside down under the rear deck of the boat trying to sort out wiring, and I'm beginning to feel like a bat!

The other day it was 70 and I was washing the boat and rearranging the garage; that night we had tornadoes just south of here; the next day it went to freezing and yesterday morning we had snow.

Back to work tomorrow after my week off; it doesn't feel like I've accomplished nearly as much as I should have...somehow things never go smoothly as you hope!

Hope the weekend is being kind to everyone!