Wednesday, June 30, 2010
The escape of books was all I had and they were all Elsewhere, I realize now. Other times, other places, and never the real crime/murder mystery types because that was no mystery to me. I only needed a couple decades to work all that out and wend my way here, to sanity.
Now I can enjoy that sunset without smudged buildings blocking the light. We can watch the hay being rolled into giant ho-ho's, and hear the low call of the cattle in the pasture at the end of the block. We can lean on the truck, talking to friends, and giggle at the local kids yelling "Marco...Pollo!"
It will likely all come crashing down and kids may not yell much at all for a few years. The cities will be unlivable. Out here, though, the tractors will run and the corn will grow. The tomatoes will be cherished and the chickens protected like the gold others thought wise to hold in their condos.
Way out here...life will go on as it always has, carried on by the people who know what it means to make do and get by. And a new soundtrack will grow from that experience. It is starting now. Sing along...
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
"I gotta believe it's all downhill from here."
I am afraid those are prophetic words...from the best writer out there. (Esp since V-man has gone into witness protection.)
Regardless - Billy, a very nice rendition of a classic, no?
"She has chewed the box of 22 ammo - there are piles of it all over the floor - about 500 rounds worth. And she dragged every shoe in the house out to the living room and piled them up - but only one of each pair. Did not chew them. Ranger was giving her the look. The 'you are in trouble' look."
She has her own way about her. I took time this AM in full office attire to walk her for 20 minutes alone - her own time - in the hope she would "take a break" as we call it. Nope. But as soon as we were inside she was in the bedroom squatting. What the hell kinda message is THAT?! I sweated half my face off for that?
I tell you - if I was single or dogless I'd take her on just to win this contest of wills. It's a full on chick fight, I tell you. Sigh...fingers crossed the canine unit wants her...the inquiry is in.
Monday, June 28, 2010
Well, you can't see it here but she left with a big smile on her face. This was taken during her first shots ever (with the gentle .22) while she worked out some kinks. She had a hard time keeping the aggressive stance but by the time we rolled on to the .45 and the M4, she was pegging it. (But all those pics are on their camera.)
Better still, she brought her 12 year old daughter along and they both learned at the same time. She's a sharp young thing and a natural, making very fine shots shortly after her initial magazine was through. She has made it clear that getting a .22 for her birthday would be the best gift ever.
Mom thinks a .45 a great idea and was even happier to know that some can accomodate a .22 conversion kit, making it a win-win until that birthday rolls around.
The M4? Oh, my goodness - the young lady was rocking that thing, let me tell you. And Mom was laughing as she pegged the target over and over in the cranial vault and pelvic girdle.
All in all, it was an amazingly fun morning - just maddog hot on that range. We all were happy to leave at noon.
It's been said over and over everywhere but...try and introduce a new shooter when you can! All we charged them was the ammo they shot and Mom said it was a bargain. Another one - no, two! - into the fold...
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Friday, June 25, 2010
A favorite line by a favorite character in the series True Blood, it was what echoed in my mind this hot afternoon.
First, we had to deal with the Texas sized wasps in their nest on the bench...(note to self: add wasp spray to kit)
...then find the bench set to serve Sasquatch and move to alternate shooting position. Alternate and warmer...
Ah, yes...finally got the scope put on the new rifle and the thing sighted in enough - for now. The thermometer on the bag said 120 degrees but the truck said 95. I'm going for something in between, personally.
He was happy with his work after about 90 minutes (insert 20 or so for chatting with the local who opened the range).
"You want to try it?" Oh, hell yeah! Mind you, the report from the thing was huge. The first shot stunned me as I was fairly nearby. I'd expected loud...this was...joltingly so. Still, how could I say no?!
I moved to this nearer location - and the shade - and set up.
It's a lovely beast and surprisingly easy to manage. Not sure how long or far I'd want to hump the damned thing in the heat, though.
You can see my results with first shots ever. All inside, thankyouverymuch. Yes, yes - I know shooting with a fat scope at that range is pretty much elementary and unimpressive. But I am still pleased with my first efforts!
I realized that all those standard shooting rules really are accentuated - every breath caused a rise and fall in the glass. Getting cosy was important. But it was superb.
Speaking of glass...you really can't ask for better than this. Well, okay, maybe you can ask - but this one is affordable. Relatively speaking.
Just another lovely Texas day under a blue sky with the biggest clouds just puffing along above. Not a thing to complain about. Not a single thing.
Thursday, June 24, 2010
He finds this vid from the Way Back machine wherein the Useful Idiot uses his not-quite 15 minutes of fame for the day to primp and preen as a General scratches notes on a pad. Likely, something akin to "never work for this SOB if given the choice" - which he has seemingly forgotten.
Good luck with that, Petraeus. McChrystal may have chosen to fall on his sword rather than bear up under any sort of nonsense that the Idiot may have wrought in his life. Having not read the article (because, face it, it's RS - the accuracy is highly questionable - the author has stated, "Objectivity is a fallacy”...), the man is not an idiot - he would not have said a damned thing that he didn't want out there in public. He knew what he was saying and to whom. The important thing is to understand it for what it was: a sign being placed right in front of our faces.
Frankly, I'd rather have McChrystal INCONUS. We may need him before long.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Hadn't been to Matt G's place in a while (nor many others - not enough time in the world to keep up). He had this to offer but didn't provide the kindly beverage warning that I shall give you. Safe to drink post-1:15m.
Matt also mentions the "catch and release" problems faced lately. As for Trooper? He looks at it like a vitamin - one a day! Seriously, they are called "no gottee's" here - as in no got license, no got insurance, no got ID. Which then means No Got No Choice. One of them had an ICE hold for no-show on her deportation hearing. The sheer number of violators is astounding. Append the number that are going about their business without being caught?
Build the damned fence already. We can pitch back over whatever we catch and at least avoid the rest. Use this plan - it is already proven.
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
And there are reasons for it...
Not that long ago all of DPS was alerted to an incident:
"NORAD has issued a statement it says clarifies its position on an incident which happened over the weekend involving a Mexican Navy helicopter in a Texas border town." A matter of the fly-over of an ICE enclave with armed military types hanging out the doors - an extended duration of flight ensured the notice of everyone in the vicinity.
Today, the news spits out the obvious, "Mexican drug cartels have set up shop on American soil, maintaining lookout bases in strategic locations in the hills of southern Arizona from which their scouts can monitor every move made by law enforcement officials, federal agents tell Fox News." I wonder what the reaction would be if, rather than cartels, the bases were manned by Tea Party members. You couldn't get supplies there for all the news trucks in the way.
Trooper noted in his own duty down south that it was a futile game as they watched us, we watched them, and decoys were sent to divert the limited resources as whatever and whomever they wished came through elsewhere. Not to mention the crooked locals on the take, performing their own diversions when they got too close...
This failure in securing the nation cannot be solved through manpower alone. It demands a double fence with no-man's land between. It requires a real resolve to not deal with this as a mere drug war issue but as a national security issue. And since no one seems to care about either, the states themselves need to just deal with it - buy the land, build the fences, man the lookouts, and shoot on sight anyone choosing to cross illegally. Execute the dominion that the states are supposed to maintain.
Monday, June 21, 2010
That grin from Besenyei at 5:20m made me smirk in communion. Surprising was the manner in which the stick was slammed side to side, nothing gentle or coaxing about it. But that poor man at about 15:30m hardly missing a final error? I do believe he was not all there in that moment but something in him cried out "altitude!" against the darkness.
I cannot imagine a more picturesque location for the race, nothing boring about it. Interestingly, the gentlemen are mostly of an age, so to say. Damned sexy - no doubt about it.
It was not that he was a bad fellow - he was simply not a warrior. He wasn't anything even approximating that. And I feared for her that fate of so many strong women: the weak, controllable man. It is a snare that far too many fall into because you at first are so relieved to find someone who can enjoy your strength and they might even at first appear to match it. But over time one can see the evidence mounting and it becomes a tiresome business, being in charge.
She escaped to Texas, an 18 hour drive without AC (?!) and with two dogs who thought they were going to hell. She stopped near the border for the night. She arrived here in the evening and fell into a deep sleep of peace.
The dogs, however, slept hardly at all. Ranger was suddenly and irrevocably in love with Luna. Caught here in their lover's communion you can see her lovely blue eyes and delicate snout that Ranger licked softly.
We laughed all weekend that at least one of the visitors was enjoying their love life.
Shopping was done, it being the perfect therapy for a girl, and meals out with friends for distraction. Trooper worked much of the time so we managed what we could to entertain. But she vowed it was sweet to simply sit and do nothing at all. She works two jobs - well, volunteers as EMT to gain a real experience set that her class cohorts are not even approaching at this time.
Connections were made with Air Force personnel who might be helpful in getting them to ignore her genetic junk in the trunk so that she can manage an entry in January. Smart gal, not wishing to deal with boot camp in Texas in summer. She was dutifully reminded of time passing as she spoke with a friend's son - hardly 15 - who was completeing a variety of training for PJ try-out as soon as the law allows.
I think she was saddened at the time wasted, of how she delayed that service already for the man and his fear that she'd find someone else. And now...telling her to just be patient as her life now is not what it will be in a mere 4 years.
Her goal is flight nurse with a 6 year promise at least. We cannot help but imagine handsome officers of good character and strong souls who would welcome her candor and mutual strength. As happens too often, she feared that strength equaled "caustic bitch" because "men" have always punished her for it. No, no...one simply must look harder for that one who will see that character and appreciate it. No where better, I think, than in that field of endeavor.
And now she wends her way home, already across the border and preparing to work again in the morning. Hopefully, full of hope and the knowledge that she can manage this transition with ease if she'll just set her sights a bit further ahead.
Ranger, though, is inconsolable.
Monday, June 14, 2010
...which was entirely too much akin to this:
Will that moron's career be ended with an assault charge or will the democrats just get all hot and bothered at the sight?
Never doubt that this is precisely what the administration wants to do and is doing. Just because you don't feel the grip on your wrist yet doesn't mean it isn't coming.
Sunday, June 13, 2010
I gave the monster puppy a hug, it being the only cure for that sort of drifting melancholy available. He responded with the look that says, "Now?" No, no - not yet. The sun is still too high in the sky, vampire baby.
Ranger hasn't taken to wearing the Doggles as he must if he is to get out in the daytime. Neither the Large nor XL fit him - he is a kind of in-between - so we'll have to figure out some alternatives. For now, his options are dawn and dusk and brief excursions into the bright light of day. You can see his mood has altered with a general need to be within a close proximity - closer than his usual guard dog nature - to me as well as a kind of lethargy. A small part of me thinks it'd be kinder to find him a home in a cloudy clime. But he is ours, blind or no.
I was thinking about the light earlier on the drive home. The clouds were doing that glorious open Texas land thing where the shadows are cast and recast as I moved beneath them. A chiaroscuro on the road, changing, moving...
There was only the soundtrack for company, glances about as the hectic traffic that was so like Atlanta's started to thin out until it was just the empty tollway and the orchestration...
Whisper of a thrill...the surging strings and tinkling piano emoted chills to a kind of sotto voce longing for voices long dead, a nod of understanding...and the strange thought-picture of people just standing in those wide pastures in the wind, watching me pass and they, themselves, passing into the aether once more.
What watches the watcher? What remains in shadow while in the light of day? What comes to us in our darkness with the glimmer of pale hope?
And still the sun will set on us all...one day...best that we ensure our own shadow is cast upon ground that pleases us best. While we can.
Since I may have a few new folks stop by I thought I'd toss out some misc facts/thoughts - the meme is to blame.
I love light and how it changes our view of the world - I used to do a lot of B&W photography because it was so clean. And you can make the prints at home.
I can cook pretty darn well.
I think quantum physics and nanotech are insanely cool and the latter will change the world completely in a few decades if not sooner.
I think Justin Timberlake's recent album was fantastic and that he's the next Fred Astaire.
I like to keep a loaded gun nearby at all times.
I like to lay in a blanket on the grass in the cool autumn afternoon and nap. But I don't do it as often as I should.
Heights give me an irrational desire to jump. Even against my will and knowing it means death.
I avoid heights, generally.
The only good photos of me are when I've been in Colorado.
Relatively timeless for a post - the next oldest was about that nutball astronaut in a diaper. Not really all that interesting now, really.
Kind of like this post. Ahem...
Seems that the series is over so set your Tivo to enjoy them as they will be gone soon. Her site references this cookery shop - oh, how I can dream...just the Accessories alone are enough to keep me entertained and dreaming of fine cookery.
Now, I think "I'll be in my bunk".
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Friday, June 11, 2010
I think I've disguised the cast of characters well enough. (I did leave the notable and gratuitous cleavage shot alone - no, it's not mine.)
I would be the one with the giant grin on my face. I wish I had my rifle! We all gathered so quickly for the shot and Trooper had put it aside as he helped take down the range gear...
I know that anyone who knows me will not be fooled at all. Still, it is a nod to the bare bones security that we attempt to maintain. We are not that hard to find, after all. We just do what we can to make it a little harder.
And now it's time to see if I can get some sleep...wrestled with that lovely Blackland Prairie mud this evening - seems our AC is kicking out quite the puddle of condensation. Trooper's initial foray into drainage systems was inadequate and I had to dig out a channel to relieve the system until tomorrow. I now have a motherhumper catch basin thing, PVC piping and gravel. He has a project in the morning.
"I made them unearth the urn so I could see the name," Nolte said in a phone interview Thursday from New York. "I have peace knowing my sister is indeed in the right place."
And of course one wonders where this bit of flotsam floated in from...
"Separately, the Army is investigating whether the cemetery's deputy superintendent, Thurman Higginbotham, made false statements to service investigators. Higginbotham, who ran the day-to-day operations at the cemetery, has been accused by former employees of creating a hostile work environment and breaking into their e-mail systems.."
Oh, there is a great deal more to that story, of course. Strange how a man so embroiled in controversy could manage to be put at a podium...
"In 2003, the cemetery hired a company called Standard Technology Inc. to begin the work. The project manager was someone described by cemetery employees as a Higginbotham favorite at that time, Richard Greaux. Within a year, Greaux struck out on his own, founding his own Manassas-Va.-based company, Offise Solutions Inc. The contract followed Greaux there."
Elsewhere, it notes, "...Richard Greaux, an Air Force veteran with fifteen years of database development and IT project management experience at EDS and other firms. Mr. Greaux, whose work history includes assignments at the White House Communications Agency, developing software applications for AT&T and the Department of Veterans Affairs, saw a need for targeted IT services. " Was he at the White House during this little escapade? Or maybe involved in this database?
And then taking on this fine example in order to do a wee bit of hacking...
Well, I suspect this entire thing will crack wide open as it ought - and perhaps cleaner hands can take the wheel and avoid using the hallowed ground as a coffer.
A generous manly sizing, women will want to order a size less in waist than usual. My experience was pre-laundering, of course...your mileage may vary.
Lots of other stuff in the closeout section if you are in the mood to upgrade gear. And those gloves? Price is a tad high but the quality is ALL there. Terrific for motorcycle riding, nice on the range. Seems they only have large left which were too big for my goofy hobbit hands. Just right on Trooper's manly mitts.
Thursday, June 10, 2010
"Maybe you've been a recipient of those viral emails about him. Remember the flap about the flag lapel pin? Remember the hand over the heart during the National Anthem question? Remember the discussions over his choices of what to do on Veteran's Day and Memorial Day and D-Day? Remember the series of pictures of past Presidents briefing from that podium at the end of the hall down from the Oval Office? It asked what was missing with the Bamster, and then revealed that the position is no longer flanked with American flags. The elephant has been trumpeting in the room all along. "
And then he had to go here. Cruel...
So many wrong turns led me away from that life. I'd have done anything just to pump the fuel into them...well, I suppose not since I didn't. But the Air Force was unkind in those days to the lesser candidates. They could afford to be picky and so they were. I did not blame them but...oh, if only they'd been more motivating. I cannot imagine what my life would have been like.
I watch things like that and just wipe away tears of regret. I was meant for these things - it is a thing I know just as I know my own heartbeat. But it was late in life that I discovered it and am now rather too old to be craving battle. Likely there will be battles enou to come if I will only be patient.
How I envy each of you who has known the uniform...my only comfort has been, "They also serve who only stand and wait."
God, I need a drink to wash this regret down.
"The Navy lost four submersible unmanned drones over the weekend in the Chesapeake Bay near Norfolk, Va., and is asking the public for help in finding the errant torpedo shaped drones. Communication was lost with four of the 13 undersea drones on Sunday as they were scanning the sea floor for mines as part of a training exercise."
Read more: http://defensetech.org/#ixzz0qU6H7eHs Defense.org
Immediately after you send in your comment you get a uneasy sense of, "Oh, yeah - uh. Later," and you pick up your tray of pixels and find the Lonely Loser Table.
Or it could just be me...
Wednesday, June 09, 2010
Mary Schmich's "Wear sunscreen."
If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now.
Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Oh, never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they've faded. But trust me, in 20 years, you'll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can't grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked. You are not as fat as you imagine.
Don't worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blindside you at 4pm on some idle Tuesday.
Do one thing every day that scares you.
Don't be reckless with other people's hearts. Don't put up with people who are reckless with yours.
Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is long and, in the end, it's only with yourself.
Remember compliments you receive. Forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.
Keep your old love letters. Throw away your old bank statements.
Don't feel guilty if you don't know what you want to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn't know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don't.
Get plenty of calcium. Be kind to your knees. You'll miss them when they're gone.
Maybe you'll marry, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll have children, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll divorce at 40, maybe you'll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary.
Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chance. So are everybody else's.
Enjoy your body. Use it every way you can. Don't be afraid of it or of what other people think of it. It's the greatest instrument you'll ever own.
Dance, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room.
Read the directions, even if you don't follow them.
Do not read beauty magazines. They will only make you feel ugly.
Get to know your parents. You never know when they'll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings. They're your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future.
Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.
Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard. Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft. Travel.
Accept certain inalienable truths: Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. You, too, will get old. And when you do, you'll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders.
Respect your elders.
Don't expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you'll have a wealthy spouse. But you never know when either one might run out.
Don't mess too much with your hair or by the time you're 40 it will look 85.
Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth.
But trust me on the sunscreen.
Tuesday, June 08, 2010
For one thing, it really points out the downfall of being a specialist and entering a competition like this. If I knew I would be on a nat'l program (and had a career at stake if I failed miserably) you can bet I would have started finding, borrowing, and learning about every gun I could. Sure, maybe you could only review the parts and pieces online.
But the Seeklander performance was surprising. I'm confident it was a sight issue but even so it is inexcusable. I would expect a "professional" to be versed in every type of sight - perhaps not having used it but at least knowing how to use it! And why not just (after the 10th round) walked shots up to the target, learning as you went? Hell, I don't pretend to know a damned thing but it's what I would have done.
Tara Poremba - what can I say so far from one show? That using a spotting scope ought to have been an expected task and practiced until you were able to see the twitch of a chipmunk ass at 500 yards - that's what I would say. The only woman and this is what comes of it? Or perhaps she was slagging to screw the other guy? Which brings me to my next point.
WHY WHY WHY must every show fall to the slimy "personality contest" motif? You would think this show topic would easily permit a points-based pass/fail system and would have no need to introduce the "fuck your partner/Survivor" mindgame bullshit. It absolutely downgrades the show for me and I may choose to load the dishwasher rather than watch that moronic "shoot their target and end `em" routine each show. When shall we ever see a program based on MERIT?!
All that said, I fervently hope Kelly Bachand whips them all. Well, I hope he and Caleb go toe to toe at the end. But I like the cut of Kelly's jib, by God.
Monday, June 07, 2010
Sunday, June 06, 2010
Friday, June 04, 2010
Damned fine food and one is a devotee of either one or the other locations - but we tend to patronise one for the meat market (steaks you would not believe) and the other for the `que. But you see that ancient layer of smoke on all the walls? The old signage and older grandma with the butcher paper? It is like that every single day here.
Do not stand for rude city life, my friends. It isn't necessary. Get yourself a straw hat, pack your bags and guns, and c`mon. We'll buy your first links.
Wednesday, June 02, 2010
Let's see - fever, cough, exhaustion, sore throat, congestion, runny nose...add some buboes and it'd be the Dark Ages all over again. But do you know what makes this martyr specially martyristic? I kissed and waved at the Trooper as he left for a ride on his new bike with his pal. The world needs to know just how amazing I am. It could just be the fever talking at this point, though.
I tried to get some work done but found myself sending out meeting requests during times that no one was available. Suhweet. Step away from the Outlook. Instead, it has been a series of blow, hack, sip, hack, blow, keel over. I will have to deal with work later when I haven't more snark than sense.
I will tell you this, though - if that damned cat rings the bells on the door knob to go outside ONE MORE TIME I will put him in the tub. Smartass bastard. What kind of cat tells you when to open the door?
Right, then. Time to keel over, I think.
Tuesday, June 01, 2010
My husband got a Harley. He, in exchange, gave me his sinus infection/crud. The fucking thing doesn't even have a two-up seat yet so he can't give me a ride to avoid The Harpy Syndrome.
Yesterday I put on a pair of jeans and my brain was all mad, "Who washed these damned things and shrunk them? Goddamn it, I can't have ANYTHING nice..." I realized a moment later that I wash all the clothes and the jeans hadn't shrunk. My chin(s) hit my chest and a small tear fell. I then wanted to kick a cat but didn't.
I ate a bowl of cake with berries and real whipped cream after a lunch of scalloped potatoes. Because I am SICK, people. Shit do NOT judge me.
Still in my PJs. Laura Ashley if you must know so I look like grandma's sofa. Except I never knew my grandma so you'll have to just use your own.
Thinking about a shower. Really should because this Theraflu is like Niquil (sp?) Lite - you tend to fall where you took it and wake with your spittle dried to the surface and stuck like a bug. And I don't want to fall in the shower because my mom once told me she dreamed I was dead in the bathtub. I do not fuck around in the tub.
I am a completely spoiled brat at work. As in not having to. I fully expect a pink slip any day because of it. People must HATE me. I feel bad sometimes about it. Then go surf the next blog.
My SUV seems to be "pinin' for the fjords". At least the 2nd gear is. I love that thing. I do NOT want another one, I do not want to pay a car payment or higher insurance. I want my damned SUV back. If I want to put a new engine in the Beloved I WILL. Even if it does mean an ever-escalating number of failures and fixes. The dog does not fit in the back seat of the Trooper's truck. No amount of smiling kindly while revving the motorcycle will ameliorate that fact.
I may have meant alleviate there - not sure. Closing in on the drowning hour...
I would trade Beloved for a really good price on an Excursion in a heartbeat. My love is fickle.
When I had to yank out all the old bluebonnet plants yesterday in the front bed I felt like it was sacrilege. The ant bites seemed a reasonable price to pay. It also reminded me to get the Chem Team out here to kill anything with more than 4 legs.
My SIL gave us their home Flavia system. I am so thrilled. I wish they made a Theraflu sachet.
OK. May be skipping the whole shower thing. The medicine sank through the tater layer rather faster than expected.