Friday, October 31, 2014

Halloween again? Ho Hum


Whatsoever thou doest, check the Davidicus rules before plunging into the spoils!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

The Old Guy and the Old Dame

The old house is still standing
Its days of usefulness are o'er
And though it hasn't fallen
It is more decrepit than it was the year before.

Missing panes and tattered shingles
The building is beginning to crumble
Time-battered and weather worn
I, too, am beginning to stumble.

From time to time I stop to visit
To assess the prospects for tomorrow
Some day she'll fall but I may not see it
Like her, I've little time yet to borrow.

Will the house go first, or will I?
 You may not play our little game
We'll soon revert to dust 
The old Guy and the old Dame.

© 2014 David W. Lacy

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Walter Raleigh #T

Sir Walter Ralegh by 'H' monogrammist.jpg396 years ago today at the Tower of London, Sir Walter Raleigh lost his head.  Walter was a favorite of the Queen, Elizabeth I, and he rose rapidly in the court and in the eyes of his fellow countrymen.

The Queen knighted him.  He wrote.  He explored.  He fought.  He engaged in political machinations.

He secretly married  one of the Queen's handmaidens.  The Queen was not amused, threw him into the Tower.

But she relented and he got out, engaged in more exploration.
Elizabeth died. The new Monarch, James I, had his suspicions. The King threw Raleigh into the Tower.  But again, Raleigh rallied, got out and went to South America on his second expedition in search of El Dorado.  Failure.  Returned home.  King threw him into Tower yet again, mainly because the Spanish were irked at Raleigh because his men had ransacked one of their outposts.

This time, the man went to pieces before getting off the premises.

Walter Raleigh 1552 (or '54) - 1618

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Mood Rings and Pet Rocks

Yesterday's post ended with a reference to the "mood ring."  That rather popped into my head unbidden, a thing about which I had not thought in many a moon.  This in turn provided me with something to think about during the sleepless time of the wee hours.

What I was thinking about led to today's topic.  What fads or mania were you caught up in back in the day?

First, the mood ring.  The fad swept the nation in the early to mid-seventies.  I never had one, but I had two teenage daughters during that time frame.  The rage not only entertained the young people, it worked its way into the culture.  I think I recall that Charles Schulz portrayed an incident in which Peppermint Patty's mood ring exploded because she was so angry with Charlie Brown.  The following, though, is my favorite mood ring story.
A woman  reported that her husband was unhappy with her mood swings. So he bought her a mood ring. He hoped that he would be able to monitor her moods and prepare himself accordingly. It worked. He discovered that when she was in a good mood, the ring turned green. And when she was in a bad mood. the ring left a big red mark on his forehead. "Maybe next time," she said, "he'll buy me a diamond."
Some other mania that come to mind are these: pet rocks, Cabbage Patch Kids, pogs, Beanie Babies, Tickle Me Elmo.

Me? Beanie Babies.  I have a large basketful of them to this day.  (Please follow the link.)  Pet rocks.  I still carry a rock or two in my pocket at all times.  They are not official "pet rocks," though.  Just rocks.

What fads were you into? Others you remember?

Monday, October 27, 2014

Open up; Share

Beginning in the fall of 1940 and extending through the summer of 1959 Monday mornings were to be dreaded, for I had to respond to the signal to begin another week of school, or I had to punch the time clock and put myself at the behest of the employer.  (This did not apply, or course, during the wonderful summer months during the school years, three glorious months of parole.)

Beginning in mid-August of 1959 I started teaching youngsters in the public schools of Indiana.  For the next 31 years, Monday mornings signalled the beginning of another week of adventure and excitement in the world of education.   (Except, of course, during the long summer months when supplemental employment had to fill in to provide food and shelter until school resumed.)

Now, for the past 24 years, Monday morning is just another morning.

Hi, I'm vanilla.  Howya doin'?  What color is your mood ring on Monday morning?

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Prosperity Now and Then

I recently shared some thoughts on televangelism, and I hope I did it in the spirit of Christian love.  I am going a bit farther down that road with this post in which I simply present some things I believe about the teachings of the Master.

Some of today's ministers, both of the tv sort and of the pastoral sort, preach what has been referred to as a "prosperity gospel."  This is the teaching that God wants us to prosper in the here and now, physically and financially.*  I do not find much support for this in scripture, but I take great stock in the teachings of Jesus as I find them in my Bible.  I do believe that we are charged with the responsibility of stewardship of our resources in all areas of our lives.

In the Sermon on the Mount, found in the Book of Matthew, Jesus makes some blunt and very clear statements, many of which I suspect most people do not really want to hear.  In chapter five, we find these words:

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
None of this strikes me as admonition to strive for worldly goods.  Moreover, the Master continues in chapter six:
19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Jesus goes on to tell us, basically, that we should trust in God for our needs and focus on right living, i.e., love God, and love our neighbor as ourselves.
*Someone who is near and dear to me was told by an adherent of this "theology" that her husband had died following a protracted illness because they had not sufficient faith for healing.  What I know is that because of his faith in his Savior, he was healed.  As Paul said, "To die is gain!"  Nothing like kicking people when they are down.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Old Silos

 Sharkbytes discovered a very interesting steel silo which she shared with us here.  

There is a wonderful old vitrified tile silo four miles from our house.  It is all that remains of an abandoned barn lot. The silo sits on the boundary between a soybean field and an old woods.

We drive by this location often, and BBBH and I have had some interesting conversations about a dream of building a home on this spot and incorporating the silo into our new digs.  I'll not rehearse the silliness of our "plans" but I will say that we have come up with some great ideas!

Less than a mile due south of the tile structure is the farm of a dear friend of ours.  This old banded stave silo sits about an hundred yards from the house.  There are numerous modern structures between the house and the silo.  I am sure that Little Jo Ann could have told us the history of this silo, but she passed away this summer.  As many times as we visited this farm, it never occurred to me to ask about that.

Go visit Sharkey's silo.

(Apologies for the photography.  These pictures were taken within five minutes of each other, but I had to shoot into the sun on the first one.)

Friday, October 24, 2014

From the Land Down Under

Bob Warr posted this yesterday.  He in turn got it from Leah.  It belongs here as well.

"The punters know that the horse named Morality rarely gets past the post, whereas 

the nag named Self-interest always runs a good race." 

~Gough Whitlam, writing in the London Daily Telegraph on October 19, 1989.

 Australia's 21st Prime Minister, Edward Gough Whitlam,

11 July 1916 - 21 Oct 2014 RIP

Thursday, October 23, 2014

The War of Jenkins' Ear

In 1731 the English ship Rebecca1 captained by one Jenkins was boarded by the Spanish coast guard, an encounter in which, Jenkins said, a Spanish sailor cut off Jenkins's ear.  In the interest of fairness, it might be noted that English and Spanish merchants and pirates were preying on each others ships. English merchants, Spanish pirates; Spanish merchants, English pirates, you know what I mean though I was not there.

Over a period of eight years resentments built, Walpole attempted to avoid war, the English subjects wanted war.  In 1739 Jenkins testified before Parliament, displaying the reputed severed ear.  War against Spain was declared October 23, 1739. This went on for some time, and lots of people died, including Colonial Americans who for the first time were engaged as British soldiers in a foreign war.2

This war had significance in the New World, for at the time the English controlled Georgia, whereas Florida was owned by Spain.  In raids on each other battles were fought up and down the south coast of Georgia, defended by Oglethorpe, not the least of which was Bloody Marsh after the Spanish landed on St. Simons Island.3

Jenkins War was soon folded into the War of Austrian Succession, all of which ended with the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle in 1748.  The St Johns River was unofficially recognized as the border between Florida and Georgia, and other issues, including trade by the British in Spanish America, were settled by the Treaty of Madrid in 1750.2

1.  In addition to piracy and severed ears, it should be noted that underlying these hostilities were trade issues, including the "right" of the English to trade slaves in Spanish America, control of territory, and the general bellicose proclivities of mankind which seems to have persisted throughout history, and which still persists to this day.
2.  After eight years between the severing and the exhibiting of the ear, it could well have been a pig's ear, for all I know.
3.  There really is a lot of interesting reading on the subject if one wishes to follow some of the links provided below.


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Televangelism and the Written Word

I don't much watch television preachers.  I am likely to spend the time I might have done reading after bloggers who put their sermons and messages in writing and share with any who will read.  A few examples of writers in this realm whom I consider worthy of reading would include Matt, and Sarah, and Ken.

My reasons for avoiding most tv ministers are my own.  I see nothing to be gained by criticizing men and women who are engaged in the activity.  I encourage discernment and wisdom in selecting those with whom you spend your time and from whom you receive spiritual guidance.

I do, though, occasionally take time to watch that little white haired Louisiana dandy, Jesse Duplantis.  I watch him for the pure entertainment value of his presentation, and sometimes there is a bonus of enlightenment.  The man is funny.  The man could well have made his livelihood as a comedian, had he chosen the secular field of endeavor.

Once in a great while, and when there is nothing else on the Sunday afternoon tube, nothing other than football, that is, I will tune in to see what Freddy Price is on about.  That 's entertainment, too.

Disclaimer:  The mention of these ministers, whether bloggers or televangelists, is in no wise to be construed as an endorsement of their theologies or viewpoints.  I have already suggested wisdom and discernment.

As he told it:

Jesse:  Let me tell you something!
Cathy (Mrs. D): You listen to me.  I am not that naive little girl you married thirty-nine years ago!
Jesse:  I miss her.
Cathy:  She's dead!

Truth: His sermon on spousal interactions was excellent.  Oh, vanilla, do learn from it.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Probe, Pry and Test

     --Walt Kelly, 1961                  

Monday, October 20, 2014

Where are you


Perhaps "AT" means Any Town, Indiana
© 2014 David W. Lacy

Sunday, October 19, 2014

It's a Dog's Life

and a totally uninhibited lifestyle it is, too.

"Dog" or "dogs" referenced forty-nine times in the Holy Bible.  The one that I most enjoy and appreciate is found in the seventh chapter of Mark.  (Matthew also gives an account of the incident.) A gentile woman, having heard of Jesus, and having a daughter that is possessed of an evil spirit, seeks Jesus out and asks for his favor in banishing the spirit.

Now Jesus, being a Jew, and devout, tells her that it is not right that dogs should eat before the children are fed.

Truth, Master, she said.  But even the dogs eat of the crumbs the children drop under the table.

Jesus, taking note of her faith, said, For this saying, go your way, your daughter is no longer afflicted.
It was not lost on the Syrophoenician woman that she was being likened to a dog, if not being called a dog.  Which of us would not resent such treatment, and that in a public venue?  But she was on a mission, a mission which she would not allow to be thwarted by hurt feelings or resentment.  Rather, she, in clear deference and in complete agreement with Jesus's assessment, pressed her case further, and her petition was granted.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Penny and the Spider

Old curmudgeon vanilla
sat on a sofa pilla
Much to his surprise
a spider of great size
crawled up and sat down beside him.

The creature meant no harm
so without any alarm
vanilla placed the beautiful beast
for a photo at least
in the bowl of the kitchen sink.

For comparison, a penny
was carefully put in a
position nearby; the shutter: "click," 
he took the pic
he's sharing.  Isn't that nice?

Friday, October 17, 2014

TR and Vanilla

A beautiful fall evening, 1915.  Former President Theodore Roosevelt was to speak at our local community center.  Naturally I could not miss an opportunity to hear this outstanding man whose service to the country will be long remembered.

The young lady who introduced Mr. Roosevelt gave some brief background to the times.  She reminded us that Henry Ford had just sold his one millionth Model T automobile, and that we could own one ourselves for $300.  We could buy our gasoline at the local drugstore.  Remember, though that the speed limit in town is ten miles per hour, and be careful.

Technology is advancing at such a rapid pace that there are now bathtubs in 16% of all American homes, and nearly 12% have telephones!

Mr. Roosevelt took the podium and regaled us with tales of his first buffalo hunt in Dakota.  His wife was pregnant with their first child, but of course she realized that Theodore was doing this for her, for "What wife would not be delighted to hold her new child in the parlor with the mounted head of such a great beast looking down on them?"

This trip, which included nine straight days in the rain before a buffalo was bagged, was the impetus which inspired the man to focus as he did on conservation, the preservation of the great land in which we live.  Mr. Roosevelt told how he saved the pelicans on Pelican Island in Florida, in spite of critics who questioned the constitutionality of his actions.  The American Antiquities Act of 1906 allowed him to designate the Grand Canyon a National Monument, and thus protect it from predation.

Next, The President opened the sessions to questions.  One young man asked concerning Mr. Roosevelt's role as Father of the National Park System.  We were advised that while he did indeed establish five national parks during his administration, there were already five parks designated prior to that.  I followed his response with a question.  "Mr. President, with all due respect, would you mind revisiting 1912?"

"Not at all!  At the Republican Convention in Chicago that year, the nomination was stolen from me."  He explained how that happened in detail, then went on to relate his decision to run as a third-party candidate for the Progressive Party. Yes, he said he knew that that gave the election to the Democrats.  "Mr. Wilson was an intelligent man, a progressive, but he had a spine like a chocolate eclair."*

The final question was from a high school girl who wanted Mr. Roosevelt to talk about his children.  Again, the man was "delighted," for it was a subject dear to his heart.  His eldest, Alice, was fifteen when they entered the White House, and the press immediately became enamored of her, referred to her as a "princess."  The problem, TR said, was that when a teenage girl is told often enough that she is a princess, she begins to believe it.  He talked at some length about Alice, including her recent marriage to Longworth.  He talked briefly about each of the boys, then finally came to Quentin, the youngest.  He related a tale in which Quentin entered the Oval Office with a snake which had been given him.  He assured the boy that the reptile would become a part of their menagerie, but that Dad was really quite busy right now.  "There are two Senators in the anteroom.  Why don't you go introduce the snake to them?  They speak its language."

Following the applause, Gib Young stepped out of his role and entertained some questions about himself.  He made a statement which I thought significant, and which validates a notion I have long held about professional actors.  He averred that life within his role was much more exciting than anything he might experience as his boring self.  He gave examples.  I believe that herein lies a motivation to live the actor's life.  A person who lacks confidence in his own ability to live fully and happily as himself is the person most likely to become a thespian.

It was a great evening, time well-spent.

You may read Mr. Young's curriculum vitae here.


*Historians generally believe that the simile was first applied to McKinley, not Wilson, and that it was not TR who said it; though it is certain that Roosevelt heard it, for he did use similar expressions on occasion.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Repost and Update

A few years ago I posted these fall pictures in black and white taken back in the day when i burned a lot of Tri-X.  Following these old pictures, I am adding the pictures taken through the rainy atmosphere this day provided.

A long time ago, another time, but in this place, I shot a lot of black and white film. I processed the pictures myself. I never got really good at photography, but occasionally I got lucky and came up with a decent picture. This one has long been a favorite of mine. It serves here as a header to "Indiana Fall in Black and White."

This was the vechicle which I drove back and forth to work. It is already twenty-six years old at the time this picture was taken.

Hangers-on. The leaves don't all fall at once.

Hmmm. If we rake now, we'll have to rake again. Decisions, decisions.

Falling leaves. Serendipity, for one cannot simply "order" the leaves to fall in front of the lens.

My daughter's car in the driveway. If you can identify it you are a true "car geek."

Two gables. Jerkinhead gable; straight gable.

And now the October 2014 update.

Standing in the sunroom, I opened a panel and the screen. It was raining, is still raining.  The orange/russet/red is a purple ash.  The yellow in front is provided by neighbor's tree, also an ash, but a different variety.  The green in the back left is one of the austrees in our windbreak.  Stubborn things are refusing to succumb to fall.  Yet.

 Of course there is some raking and some vine removal in the near future.  If it quits raining, that is.

Snow White and her coterie of weird little friends is scheduled to be housed in their winter quarters.  As soon as it quits raining.

One more from the secret garden behind the barn.  Won't be long now.

The More Things Change

In Elbridge Paige’s book of Short Patent Sermons published in 1841 we find
    [There are those] who would rather ride to hell in a hand-cart than walk to heaven supported by the staff of industry.
 Things haven’t changed much, have they?

Sharkey points out in the comments that language changes.  I, personally, am old enough to remember when "industry" did mean application of oneself to productive behavior.  Thus it did not occur to me to think in terms of current usage when I read the above line.  Old guy.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Still Waiting

The Chicago Cubs defeat the Detroit Tigers, 2-0, clinching the World Series. It was 1908.  It was their second consecutive World Championship as they had won the series in 1907 against the Tigers.  The Cubs have subsequently played in seven Series, the most recent in 1945.  Yet no win in 106 years.  

Wait 'til next year!

I usually come awake to the baseball season around the first of October.  This year, though, I have no idea who will be playing in the World Series.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Climbing Fool's Hill; and Coming Back Down #T

Springtime had arrived on the Front Range.  I think it was a high school freshman class picnic.  Surely it must have been my freshman year, for no one older than fourteen would have behaved in a manner silly enough to generate this tale.

The class was not a large class, for the school itself was a small school.  Close enough:  there were more than ten of us, fewer than twenty, as we set out in four cars driven by the class sponsors and a couple of courageous upper-school youngsters.

A few miles above the Garden of the Gods on the Rampart Range Road, there was a very nice spot for a picnic.  Large meadow allowing for games, plenty of places to explore.  While others were engaged in games of a social nature, three of us wandered up the hill to the site of an old abandoned mine.  We climbed the hill of rubble, moving two steps forward and a step back as the material gave beneath our feet. (Disclaimer:  the hill was not nearly so massive as the one depicted above, but it was adequate.)  Having gained the summit, it seemed imperative to enter the adit and explore the interior of the mine.  However, inside the mouth a few steps, broken timbers and fallen rock were sufficient to convey the message that entry was not warranted.

As I stepped out onto the unstable pile of small rocks, my weight and the forward motion combined to create a skiing action.  Wow!  That was fun.  Climb back up the hill, repeat.  Climb back up, wait.  If I make a short run (there was space for no more than a short run) I can fly!  The landing will be safe, for the itty bitty rocks will cushion me, and I may skid a  l o n g way down the hill!

This all worked exactly as I had pictured it in my mind, up to and including the feet-first landing.  But my feet had no more than made contact than so did my behind.  And I skied a way down the hill.  On my backside.  The rest hardly needs telling, but I know you want my version of the outcome.  Outcome.  What an appropriate term, for when I managed to stand, my hands rather reflexively reached toward the most offended part of my anatomy.  They discovered that there no longer existed a material seat in my breeches.  And that my behind was quite bloody.

Needless, I am sure, to say that the "picnic" was over for me.  But not for my classmates, who went on having fun, while I sat alone, to the side, on an old blanket a sponsor had in the trunk of his car.  Hurt, too.  My pride I mean.  What did you think I meant?

The illustration was borrowed from among dozens I found online and tampered with considerably to reflect sort of what I saw on that sunny May afternoon.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

The Whole Person


BBBH made this snapshot with her smartphone.  The setting is the tabletop in the sunroom.  Quite ordinary, is it not?

At first blush, so it would seem.  Yet it is representative of much of life as we live it. I asked her to send a copy to me so that I could use it here.  Thanks, Baby.

The focal point would be the tomatoes, the end of the crop.  The display represents the work involved in turning the soil, setting the plants, nurturing and watering them throughout the long days of summer.  The yellow, red, and green, show stages in development, and variety in cultivars.  The yellow and the red are reminders of the juicy enjoyment from July to October, and the green suggests that the plants were willing to continue production, but time ran out.  As it shall for us all.

The items in the foreground, the newspaper, the tv control, are reminders that we are not in this alone.  There is a big world surrounding us, and while we may be the center of our own little world, we are by no means the focus of the universe.  Will we leave a mark when we are gone?

The gameboard in the background reminds us that leisure time does not have to be wasted time.  Keeping the old minds sharp!  Yes, there is a score sheet, though just out of the picture, top right.  This a reminder that even in our world of cooperation and amity there is still a competitive nature within us.  A reminder, too, that as much as I wish it otherwise my score is not always the higher.

Nourishment for the body and for the mind.

The last of the Uncle Jeptha Tales
appeared here on September 25.    
Should you wish to read or reread 
any of them, They can be accessed 
via the “Short Stories” and “More 
Stories” tabs at the top of the   

Friday, October 10, 2014

Poetry and Red Onions

My father was a minister of the gospel, which I have mentioned numerous times on this blog.  Thus, when I was a lad, I got acquainted with many preachers.  Some of them made a lasting impression, most of those for all the right reasons.

A memorable individual in my life was Rev. Mr. Howard K. Busby of Lamont, Kansas.  Mr. Busby was a dear friend of my father.  He was six years older than Dad and in addition to their profession, they had much in common.  Though both men were pastors, and each served the church in administrative capacities at various times in their lives, they both conducted revival meetings on occasion.  One year when I was in my late teens, a camp meeting in New York State scheduled both men as the evangelists for the ten-day meeting.  Dad took his family with him for that meeting. This did not happen often.  Usually, Mom stayed home with the kids, the kids went to school, life lived much as usual.

The trip across country, New York State, and meeting new people were all interesting.  The camp meeting itself was run in the more-or-less typical pattern of such camps in that day. There were "preaching" services morning, afternoon, and evening with the preachers alternating pulpit duties.  So it was that if Dad preached an evening service, Busby would be on the next morning, and that evening, with Dad speaking in the afternoon.

Brother Busby (all the church people were known to one another as "Brother" or "Sister") had a routine whereby he eschewed the evening meal on those nights he was scheduled to preach.  But after the meeting we would meet with him in our cottage, or in his, and it was in this setting that he introduced me to one of his favorite after-service snacks.  Oh, salivating now, just remembering!  Mr. Busby would make himself a sandwich, and one for me, since no one else in the set cared to partake.  He would slice one of those big, sweet red onions, slather a generous portion of butter on the bread, and enclose the onion slice between two pieces of said bread.  What deliciousness!  What wonderful memories of munching and talking late in the evening!

Mr. Busby committed to memory vast amounts of scripture and many, many poems as well.  He sprinkled these gems liberally throughout his sermons, a technique which my father also used.  All these memories came back in a flood when I espied a book on my shelves entitled "The Busby Scrapbook of Poems that Touch the Heart."  It is a compilation of poetry he collected and loved, and finally had published.  I can still hear him quoting "The Touch of the Master's Hand" or "The World is Mine."

Mr. Busby died at age 93, just two years before my father passed away.

Sadly, I can no longer eat raw onions in the evening, nor any other time, for that matter.

Here is a short poem from Busby's collection:


When as a child I laughed and wept                      
    time crept.
When as a youth I dreamed and talked
    time walked.
When I became a full-grown man
    time ran.
Soon I shall find in traveling on
    time gone.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Give Me an "E"!

Annual physical; new (to me) physician. I asked for flu shot; Dr talked me into pneumonia shot, too. Nurse popped flu into left shoulder, akin to being slugged in a school-yard fisticuffs setto. Popped the pneumonia into the right shoulder.  Much like being kicked by a mule.  Shod mule. Yikes.

Mechanic overhauled carburator on the chain saw, brought it home. I went on a dead-wood rampage, cutting dross from the austrees.  Only what I could reach from the ground, of course.  The rest will succumb to the winds over time.

Lawn tractor is going to have to be retired.  Think it beyond salvation.  Well, the lawn season is nearly over; what better time to make the change.  Please!  Someone have a good sale on good equipment.

This.  This post is evidence of the desperation I encounter recently in maintaining the blog.  Never much cared for stream-of-consciousness writing, and here I am engaged in it.  Forgive me, Readers, for I know not what I do.  Seriously, I know not what I do.

(I spelled "carburetor."  Spell check suggested the change you saw above.  I still think it should have an "e."   Eh?  I mean "a."  Not so much.  Okay.  I cared enough to give my very best.  Looked it up, and the "e" is correct, except in the Commonwealth.  So why did. . . ?  Next thing we know, spell check will be suggesting an extra "u" here and there.  Just for color, and stuff.  Never mind.)


Wife says, "The car has a problem.  There's water in the carburetor."
"No way," says Hubs, "and you don't even know what a carburetor is."
"Certainly do; and there is water in the carburetor."
"Alright, already.  I'll check it out.  Where did you leave the car?"
"In the pool."

Yeah, yeah.  It was funnier when cars had carburetors.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Family Visit

 Forty years ago my cousin, Gene, visited Indiana.  See, there we are.

This past weekend he and his wife, Merrilee, visited again.
See, same two guys.

Gene and Merrilee were driving all the way across the country from Oregon to the Virginia coast.  We were blessed in that they chose to make our place one of their stops.  We had ample time to visit, bring one another up to date, and reminisce about the old days.

Gene had with him some old family pictures which I had never seen, and I added them to my digital album.
This is our Grandpa and Grandma Morrell.  The little girl is their first child, Ava, who died at age five.  The baby is Ray, who is Gene's father.  My mother was born about a year and one-half after this picture was made.

Thanks, Merrilee and Gene.  Family times are good times.

With their kids, back in the day.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Next level crashes, terrible destruction results

Today in Nutso World, Paul, brushing his teeth with CrestTM brought his mouth to the next level.  This was the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back.  The next level could bear no more.

The real tragedy of the incident is that not only is the next level destroyed, but numerous additional levels, receiving a sudden and unanticipated burden, also succumbed.  The damage assessment is on-going, but it could take decades to repair the levels and replace all the items again where they belong.


Image:  BiblioFotoTeca

Monday, October 6, 2014

October Sixth

Barbara Castle 1910 - 2002

Barbara Castle, Baroness Castle of Blackburn, was the longest-serving lady MP at some thirty-four years.  She was designated First Secretary of State from 1968 to 1970, a title which is largely honorary and an office that was vacant for twenty-five years following her term.  She also served as Secretary of State for Social Services from 1974 to 1976, a working cabinet position.

Why do I bring this woman to you attention? Simply because she shares a birth date with my father.
They were both born October 6, 1910.

Delbert W. Lacy  1910 - 1999

Delbert W. Lacy was a minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ for seventy years.  Still miss you, Dad.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Proverbs 27: 1,2

Boast not thyself of tomorrow, for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.
Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips.  --KJ21

Happy birthday to the beautiful lady who makes my life on this mortal coil worthwhile:  Grace JoAnn, I love you.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

You Don't Say

The line in the tv commercial said

"Do you wonder what makes your child behave the way they do?"

Total nonsense, of course.  Grammatically incorrect anyway you parse it.

"Do you wonder what makes your child behave the way he does?"

Grammatically correct, and traditionally understood that "he" is generically representative of either sex.  Drives the feminists up the wall.

So, awkwardly, "behave the way she/he does?"  I have actually seen this sort of thing. 
Or, "behave the way it does?"  Cold, man.  A child is a person, after all.

"Do you wonder what makes your children behave the way they do?"  Tada!  Grammatically correct.  But wait.  Does this suggest that there is a herd of kids and all their behaviors are inexplicable?

Well, what's wrong with that?

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Who is Gracy Parmer?

or, Why genealogy is so much fun.

Genealogy is fraught with puzzlement which may be why some people choose to get entangled in it. I tried it for a time.

I hope I can condense this enigma  to an understandable example of the stuff family researchers come up against.  The one common factor to be found in researching this person is a statement of birth year, 1728, and that she was born in Virginia.  Nothing else has been verifiably established, but that has not stopped the family tree builders from asserting her position as matriarch of a Parmer/Palmer clan, the one to which I belong.

William Branham, a.k.a. William Parmer, born about 1743 in Albemarle County, Virginia, who died in 1822, is verifiably recognized as progenitor of the Palmer line into which I was born.  It is asserted that his mother was Gracy Parmer and his putative father was William Branham.  In seeking records, though, one will find that it is almost as though, having need of a mother for Mr. Branham/Parmer, one was posited by someone. She came into existence of necessity and disappeared conveniently, leaving no footprints.

Yet if you look at various family trees, there you will find her, including one in which it is stated that she died in childbirth at William's advent, and another in which she supposedly gave birth to two additional children, one when she was fifty years of age, and the other at age 59!

William went by the Branham name for the first fifty plus years of his life, then he filed for legal change of name to William Parmer.  An affidavit by acquaintances asserted that William "was illegitimate" and he was "fair born" to a woman with red hair.  Come now the family researchers yet again.  One I read after went into a long and detailed historical analysis showing why, in his opinion, this tidbit points to the likelihood that mother Gracy Parmer was a Monacan Indian, and that she was in fact married to Richard Branham, and hence William was not illegitimate at all, but now he was seeking to evade a recently passed law in Virginia requiring inhabitants of mixed race to register as such.

And so it goes.

Again I ask, Who is Gracy Parmer?

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Creepy Coleus and Caladium

 Plantings by house, backyard.

Are there things you have encountered that both attract you and repulse you at the same time?  There is no explanation for such phenomena, so one is not forthcoming.  Horror movies and Stephen King novels come to mind.  Suffice it to say that in my case, plant lover that I am, there are certain plants that affect me in just that way, and coleus is one of them.  I pretty much have the same reaction to caladium.

These, caladium and coleus, are strikingly gaudy plants, for the most part, beautiful, most people would say.  And the colors are fabulous.  But the plant expends its efforts in painting its leaves and when the flowers  finally appear, pffft they are nothing to look at, in the case of the coleus, at any rate. I find this disturbing; and yes, that is just me.

Oddly enough, I like the colors of the leaves on the trees in the fall, often go on excursions for the sole purpose of viewing the autumnal foliage.  But I cannot shake the feeling of unease, of something-is-just-not-quite-right, when I look at the coleus.  Perhaps to keep me off-balance, a bit unsettled, so to speak, the planners of downtown gorgeousness here in Perfect decided this year to install huge planters on the sidewalks throughout the city.  They are stunning, and many people have complimented the city on this effort.  Seventy-six pots in total, and well-tended.

One of the principal contents of the planters is coleus.

A few years ago, we spent a couple of months in Lake Placid, Florida which touts itself as The Caladium Capital.  Imagine my enjoyment.

The last of the Uncle Jeptha Tales
appeared here on September 25.    
Should you wish to read or reread 
any of them, They can be accessed 
via the “Short Stories” and “More 
Stories” tabs at the top of the