Tuesday, August 30, 2011

What I'm afraid of.

When I was in high school, one of my teachers asked each of us to tell the class what we were afraid of. Actually, since she was an English teacher she probably asked us to tell of what we were afraid, but, whatever. As we went around the room, there were the expected answers of snakes, spiders, drowning, the dark, etc. At 16 years old, I had to think about it for a while and since none of that stuff scared me (I was, after all, 10 feet tall and bullet proof) I finally answered truthfully that really the only thing that scared me was accidentally running over a person, especially a child, while I was driving.

Now that I'm older (and about 5 feet tall and barely waterproof) I have a few more fears than I did as a kid but truthfully, that fear still haunts me. I think about it often as I drive, especially through residential areas, going slow and watching closely. It has paid off many times as I have seen the ball go rolling into the street and I'm aware enough to expect some little crumb-cruncher to come running after it. I've never even come close to my worst fear. Until today.

I wasn't in a hurry but I was pulling through the gas pumps at the local QT just a hair too fast. I was maybe doing 5 mph when I probably should have been doing 3. Not exactly Indy 500 stuff here but just almost too fast to see the little 2 year old run around the pump and stop literally inches from my front bumper, close enough she put her hand on my grill and then ran off again, continuing across the lanes of pumps until a lady grabbed her and hollered at her mom who was pumping gas three lanes over unaware that her daughter nearly had a really bad day.

I just sat there for a minute or two and composed myself. I wanted to say something to the mom but she had already thrown the kid into the backseat and taken off by the time I got around to getting out.

She will never know.

And hopefully I won't either.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Friday Quote

‎"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history and naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain." –John Adams, letter to Abigail Adams, 1780

Thursday, August 25, 2011

"Taps" played here.

It's the end of an era. A sad departure for two old friends who outlived most of their peers. Spicy mustard served me well for many years. Countless sandwiches were made...well, spicy by just its presence. An expiration date of September 2005 couldn't bring an end to our relationship until now and just last week it gracefully added just what was missing to an otherwise forgettable ham sandwich.
Yoplait Yogurt was a sad story. Never used. Never opened. It's sweet, yet nasty taste was never endured for the sake of saying I ate something healthy. It was finally laid to rest after spending what must have seemed like eternity in the back of my now-clean fridge. With its expiration date of last winter, may it rest in peace.

20 seconds with my dogs

Saturday, August 20, 2011


This is happening in my city this afternoon. The 11 year old son of a local firefighter accidently shot himself with his father's gun a couple of nights ago. Many area fire stations are paying tribute to him and his family and I appreciate that. I can't imagine having to go through something like that as a parent without having a relationship with God. I pray for peace for them.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Guess who's not sleeping in the bed tonight?

For the third time in as many weeks my dogs tangled with a skunk tonight. The two bigger ones managed to come out of it without a scent but Dori got it so bad her fur was wet. Luckily, I had stocked up on the ingredients to make a skunk-removal shampoo (peroxide, baking soda and Dawn soap). That stuff works great but there is still a slight odor although it may just be imbedded in my lungs and nostrils. Yesterday, Dori caught a dove that was flying too low to the ground. A few days ago she killed the neighbor cat and her greatest accomplishment was, of course, the feral chicken. I'm pretty sure the skunk made out better but it wasn't for her lack of trying.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Young love in bloom at VBS?

Vacation Bible School is for kids going into 1st through 6th grade, supposedly. I know we had a 7th grader and a couple of kids were probably in kindergarten but we didn't care. I saw this little boy sitting by himself during a break so I went over to him. He looked like he was 4 or 5.

What's your name?
You from around here?
Yes sir.
Got a girlfriend?
No sir.
Why not?
I don't really know.
Hmm...what kind of car do you drive?
I don't drive a car. My parents do.
That's probably why you don't have a girlfriend.

He thought about that and slowly nodded like it was all making sense now. About that time a little girl about his age just came up and sat down next to him sipping on a juicebox.

What about Sylvia?
What about her for a girlfriend? She's cute.

The girl and I both waited for his response. He raised an eyebrow.

Eh, maybe.

He moved just a little closer to her and as I walked off he asked her about the flavor of her drink. My work here is done.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Chickens in the Trees

I don't know how many years ago I saw this on Sesame Street. Not lately is all I'll say. For some reason though it has stuck in my brain all these years. I evidently learned to juggle while watching this because every time I juggle I start singing this. No kidding. I'm not a great juggler. 3 balls, no more, no fancy tricks. But I have this catchy theme song and I can't juggle without at least humming, "there are chickens in the trees".

So, that's crazy enough, right? But wait, there's more. I bring this up because at our church this week we have had Vacation Bible School and to keep the kids in place while the teachers prepared something else, I got the juggling balls out and started singing this song (of course). And the kids loved it and sang along louder than any other song.

I should have known they would enjoy it. It even entertains kids who don't speak English. Several years ago I went to Mexico on a mission trip and found myself in a similar situation where there were a lot of kids with nothing to do for a few minutes so I started doing my thing, juggling and singing. And I sing worse than I juggle, by the way but kids don't care so neither do I. Anyway, even though they couldn't speak a word of English they sang "Chickens in the Trees" at the top of their voices!

Our last day in Mexico we were able to go to a market that was about 30 minutes away. We were shopping in this crowded market where nobody spoke a word of English, well off the tourist path. I was glancing at some souvenir potential when from behind some hanging serapes a woman sang out quietly in very broken English, "cheekens in de treees", and she smiled at me. She was evidently the mother of one of the kids at the church and had heard us singing. Now...go listen to something else so you can get the song out of your head.