Saturday, January 29, 2011

Getting a move on....

We've got this trailer and a nice big pickup for moving it around; we decided it's time to do so!  We are off for a week in California torturing number 1 son & his significant other.  Damn, I'm so politically correct it hurts!  Anyway we are going to be wandering around and may or may not have internet access.  I may even have to drink a Starbuck's just to get an internet fix.  Oh no!

We are planning going by way of Sun City, AZ where I have some relatives.  Haven't seen them in a while and they are really nice people.  I don't want my relatives to think I'm trying to avoid them even though there is sometimes a bit of truth in the thought.  Doesn't everyone have relatives they would rather not see?  Happily these are the good kind and we are looking forward to a visit.

After Sun City we'll be headed towards Quartzsite where there should be tons of other rv'ers.  Happily we'll be on the Interstate headed west so, enjoy your quiet time in the desert folks.  We won't be bothering you; we'll just continue west to sunny San Diego.

Put some new shelves in the pantry the other day and the next day every bone I have was creaking!  This aging does have a few disadvantages.  But when I think about the alternative; well, I guess it's ok. 

Gotta go.  Have a good one!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Blogging from Gaudin Ford in Las Vegas.  We bought out truck from these folks and I like returning to the selling dealer for service.  Besides, it's the closest Ford dealer.  It's time for an oil change so here I sit.  Later I'll get to do a few errands.  Life in the fast lane!

It's really kind of fun; this is my first laptop (no bleeding edge for me!) so sitting here sucking on their wifi is new for me.  This Toshiba is certainly a lap-full though.  Heavy too, I see why notebooks are popular.  Yes, maybe someday I'll learn about smartphones; or maybe not. 

I asked Lee, who was a food chemist, about an email I got claiming the onions were bacteria magnets.  His answer was pretty funny.  I knew the idea was silly but he really went into detail pointing out HOW silly.  Smart guy!  I've always liked associating with smart people; I figure that maybe I'll be mistaken for one.

Have a good one.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


We took a walk yesterday - first one in a long time unfortunately.  We only went about a mile and a half (2.4km) but it was good to get out.  Took the dog, of course.  She heels while we are on the road but is given 'Free Dog' when we are out in the desert.  Here's a happy dog off sniffing everything.

As we walked along I noticed something that is thankfully unusual.

It's a live 9mm round.  Heaven knows how it would end up out there; it looks like it's been bashed around a bit as well.   I suppose it just fell out of someone's pocket.  Cars drive up and down that trail quite often. You wouldn't think it would be dangerous to run over but I wouldn't want to put that theory to the test.  Amazing what you can find if you are looking.

Have a good one.

Saturday, January 22, 2011


Some days I can hardly keep my fingers off the keyboard; others I can't think of a thing to blog.  Weird stuff.  Anyway, it's my first day off the meds given me by the ER and I'm doing fine, just rather mentally dull.  (No comments needed, thank you!)

I did find a new ride for Wombat.

Wouldn't that be great for a biker's wedding?  Wonder if Jesse James will rent it for his new honey. 

My only real problem with motorcycles is that you usually have to drive 50 miles either in lousy traffic or in boring/uncomfortable conditions to get to 2 miles of great motorcycle road.  I used to have one and I think driving in traffic just sucks.  Likewise doing 30 miles in a straight line just sucks.  Some folks think it's worth it but give me my air conditioned, cruise controlled car anyday.

Have a good one.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


Someone sent me this link.  This girl has talent!  I don't usually care for songs that contain bad language but this is special; partially it's the audience reaction, partially her abilities and I've got to admit there are people that just deserve to be told this.  Language of the song is x-rated but the vid is not.  Just excellent!

The medication given me at the ER is doing a great job so I had to cook something!  Hmmm, is that normal?  BTW, I'm not really a cook so I don't do recipes.  For example, a pound of beef could be anything from .75 to 1.25 pounds.  For this recipe, today, the cup of barley was more like 1.3 cup,  I used 2 bay leaves because the first seemed small, the vegies were just what were on hand, the mushrooms were sliced because they are large but I almost diced them.  It's not rocket science for me!

Well, anyway, I made beef-barley soup.  I look at most recipes and say, 'where's the barley?'.  You don't say that with this one, it's got 4 times the barley you find in some recipes.  So it's not a thin soup, it's close to soft cement in thickness, especially after it has been in the fridge for a day.  But it sure tastes good to my wife and I.  You've got to understand, we like barley! 

Have a good one.

Beef-n-Barley  Soup  

1 lb beef cut into small cubes

1 cup red wine
1 t rosemary
1 bay leaf
salt, pepper, garlic to taste
  (4 small cloves smashed and chopped)
2 cans beef broth
1 can Rotel (tomatoes with peppers added)

1 cup barley
2 cups water

1 cup carrot small dice
1 cup celery small dice
1 med. onion, small dice

1.25 cup mushrooms sliced

Brown the beef in oil.  Add wine, broth, tomatoes & spices.  Cook for an hour.  I only salt & peppered the beef while it was being browned. 

Add barley, cook for 10 minutes.

 Added  2 cups of water this time.  Sometimes I add more if I want it thinner.

Add carrot, celery & onion; cook for 20 minutes.
Add mushrooms; cook for 10 minutes.  Ended up cooking it for another 5 because the barley was still a bit tough.

Had to add at least a teaspoon of salt but that's for our taste, your taste might be different or you might have salted the beef more when you browned it.  Serve. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Full Moon

Last night was either the Full Moon or awfully close.  I had to take a couple photos just before sunset.  Hope you didn't get too loonie!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Strange Thing

Yesterday started out totally normal; until I spent most of the afternoon in the ER.  NOT a fun day but it was basically nothing. 

We started out for lunch and a bit of shopping.  Went into the restaurant feeling just fine; by the time the server brought our cokes I was so dizzy I couldn't stand.  I swear, I looked like every drunk you've ever seen on 'reality tv'.  We had the sandwiches packed to go and headed for the ER.  A few tests and the answer 'vertigo' came back though the doctor did mention labyrinthitis.  Well, hell, I knew that!  It's what to do about it.  Happily they handed over a prescription for Meclizine and that plus about 18 hours flat on my back seems to have done the trick.  At least labyrinthitis sounds like it would be a terrible title for a movie.

Aside from my personal problems, it wasn't a great day in the news.  People are arguing that unemployment here may be 18% rather than only 14%.  Requests for food stamps are up 250% over 2008.  Just sunshine where ever you look. 

Speaking of sunshine, it was 74F (23.3C) yesterday breaking the previous record and 17F (8C) above normal.  Nice afternoon.  Wish I'd been spending it on the patio with a glass of wine.  Have a good one.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

For Wombat

Found this photo and just had to post it for Wombat.  Wombat is the nom-de-blog of a young gentleman who drives various limos down in Florida.  I'm sorry I didn't get to meet him when I was living there.  He writes a great blog.  Wombat, please don't try this!

I don't know where this came from so if I've stolen your photo, sorry! 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Exciting Stuff!

We finally went out and bought a bird feeder.  We've been feeding the local hummingbirds for a while and decided it was time to be nice to the other guys.  It's working!

Table for two?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


I had my little rant the other day about not really 'getting' Facebook.  It got me thinking about the changes going on in the world.  It's really rather amazing when you think about it.  Now I'm ancient,  born in the first half of the 20th century if that means anything to you, but it's not just me who is noticing these changes.  A professor at Beloit College (a small mid-western US school) has been making a list every year for the last twelve years of what sets his incoming students apart from us older folks.  Here's the article.

A few of the items surprised me (well, most did but....)
  • few can write in cursive 

  • a quarter of young people under 18 have at least 1 immigrant parent

  • DNA fingerprinting has always existed

  • phones have never had cords

  • Russians and Americans have always lived together in the space station

  • US companies have always done business in Vietnam
  •  they never worried about a missile strike.
What amazing changes these are.  Some are societal, a few technological, economics certainly plays a huge part.  I certainly wasn't smart enough to buy Microsoft stock when it first came out; nor Amazon; nor Google!  I guess that as a futurist I make a great rear-view mirror.  

No, it's not the end of the world, it is only change.  Maybe some of us older folks ought to relax and accept that change will happen.   We can just try to keep up with the parts we really need and forget the rest.  Guess I ought to go fool around with Facebook some more.  Either that or go hire a 10 year old to help me!

Have a good one!

Sunday, January 09, 2011

A Quiet Day

Today has been a pretty quiet day.  We did get out for a walk but had to stick to the streets, the desert is still muddy from the snow.  The ground here has a layer of clay and just does not allow water to drain away. 

I did make the ham & bean soup on Friday; it was good too!  I have a nice immersion blender to use to thicken it but I almost always forget to blend it before adding the ham.  Using the blender on the ham shreds it and I don't like that so I end up not blending the soup.  It's still ok.  Today I made beef jerky.  All you do is cut the meat up, marinate it over night then put it on the dehydrator for a few hours.  Having it around cuts down on the amount of sweets that we eat.  It's not as healthy as eating a carrot but you do what you can do.

Earlier I went out and updated my Facebook page.  I just really don't understand Facebook.  I've made contact with a few people from my school days but otherwise I don't use it much.  Maybe I'm just not much of a networking kind of guy.  Or maybe I'm just an old goat!  It's kind of interesting, when I was working I was using all the new technologies that were available.  Now that I'm retired and have less need for technology, I have a voice-only cell phone, no iPad, no iPod, no Kindle, no text plan, no Twitter, no computer games; I'm practically a Luddite.  I'm not even sure I got the RSS feed to work for this blog.  My wife and I are talking about getting smartphones when our current cell plan runs out but it's just a reaction to feeling left behind by the world.  It's not a 'need'.  What about you?  What kind of phone do you have?  Do you like it?  Use it?

Friday, January 07, 2011


Ordinarily I post photos of the mountains to the east of our house.  That's where Mt. Charleston, the local big guy, is located.  However we have mountains on the west as well.  These are called the Nopah Range.  'Pah' is supposed to be a word meaning water and it certainly seems as though the range is well named.  If you kind of skirt around the mountains you soon find yourself in Death Valley.  We all know it's pretty dry there!  The recent snow did manage to hit the Nopah Range though making them beautiful as well as dramatic.  This photo was taken just before the sun came up.

Guess I'm as fascinated by the snow as anyone!

Today is ham and bean soup day.  I froze the bone from the Christmas ham and today it will fulfill it's destiny and add it's flavor to some yummy soup.  The recipe is basically the one in "The Joy of Cooking" that my mom and dad gave me for my 21st birthday.  The only real change is that I use a whole pound of beans; the recipe only calls for a cup or so.  At Christmas I never work too hard at getting the ham off the bone so there is plenty of meat too.  Hmmm, I'm making myself hungry!  It must be time to quit fooling around on the computer and get to work.

Have a good one!

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Snow's gone of course

It was sure popular with the media.  Front page pictures on the papers and all the talking heads could talk about on tv.  It's better then hearing about a new war we've started though.  It's still cold; only getting up to 50F or so (10C) during the day so the snow on the north side of things is still lingering.  You would have laughed if you'd been in the car with me the first time I backed out of the garage and the tires hit the frozen snow.  I jammed on the brakes thinking I'd hit something.  What an idiot!  Guess that's what I get for living in warm climates for so long.

I occasionally visit Braja at Lost & Found in India.  Usually she is pretty solemn about things but her last couple of posts have been just funny.  First I read about New Years and Cow's Bums which wasn't all that funny until you get to the actual photo of the cow's bum!  Then she told the really sad story of a guy who was doing some plastering work who literally drank himself to death; the funny part was where she pointed out that the plasterer got plastered.  LOL  Sorry but I still think it's clever writing.

Off to the hardware store to buy some shelving.  We want to update the pantry a bit.  Life in the fast lane!  Take care.

Monday, January 03, 2011

Woke early...

Woke up early this a.m. - about 05:00.  Had to go outside in my robe and take this photo.
We ended up with 2-3 inches (maybe 12-15cm) of quite wet snow.  It's above freezing though so shouldn't last too long.  School is out here but not in Vegas.  The road to Vegas is closed; partially snow but there are at least 2 accidents as well.  Brrrr.