Friday, October 30, 2009

"Fried Fridays: A tale of two stories..."


I'm in a quandary this AM. No, not from losing yet another day of work today because of ill-timed flu, although that's its own quandary. No, I'm torn between two stories, one more humorous, and one more downright scary.


Afterall, this is "Fried Friday" where I pick a loony news story that wraps up the work week as we all breathe a sigh of relief that the weekend is here. I'll start with a shorter version of the humorous story as I almost wrote about it a week or two ago.

Getting a citation for drunken driving is serious business and, sadly, all too common. Getting pulled for DWI in a motorized LA-Z-BOY recliner is something else altogether. Seems as though racing enthusiast Dennis Anderson of Proctor, Minnesota, decided to have a night out on the town and then weave his way home in comfort.

Powered by a lawn-mower gas engine, the rolling recliner comes equipped with a stereo, cup holders and lights...oh yeah, and mud flaps on the side. In order to pay for the mounting legal fees, said chair is supposed to now be up on eBay for auction, along with a signed photograph of the driving daredevil. The police politely remind everyone that the chair is not street legal.

That radical ride gives a whole new meaning to having "four on the floor and a fifth under the seat"...

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And now I go across the Big Pond for a story that is highly unsettling. Be it from movies, video games, YouTube postings, society in general, or the most likely candidate "all of the above", there seems to be a growing number of idiots that either don't know how to use their brain or make a very willful choice to unplug those synapses.

Doing something stupid where you might harm yourself, well, that's your problem. Doing something stupid that could easily take the life of another innocent person, that's EVERYbody's problem....

DATELINE: SOFIA, BULGARIA

There's a new game in town, and it's not because of the upcoming holiday season to drive sales.

Money does flow, and lots of it. Some say individuals have paid up to 5,000 euros ($7,400) for just one of these. Believe it or not, it has nothing to do with Tickle Me Elmo, either.

It's something more on the line of Tickle Me Death.

The game is one of bets, placed not only by drivers but by bystanders. On a pre-determined night for the 'show', text messages are sent out for the location that is supposed to be relatively free of police. After all, they can't be everywhere at once. Participants count on this.

It's a rather simple game, really. You take one driver with a Death Wish....choose one typically busy intersection at night...myriad people place bets...and the driver sits back from the intersection until the light turns red.

That's when it's Hammer-Time. The Pedal to the Metal. The suicide jockey then blows through the red-lighted intersection at a high rate of speed in a true game of Russian Roulette. Obviously the consequences are high for a 'hit' of any kind, or the idiot and supporting cast get their very twisted adrenaline rush and look forward to the next time.

As you can imagine, some don't get a 'next time', be they the participants or the innocent lambs that just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

'Nuff said. That actually goes far, far beyond 'fried'.

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If I felt better I'd feel the excitement of yet a 4th consecutive Saturday with rain in the forecast. Thankfully I have no other obligations but to lay low and get better. Go easy on the candy, y'all!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Count me in...


...the masses coming down with flu-like symptoms. Pretty serious chills last night with fever over 100, somewhat subsided this AM. Supposed to work News 14 Triad side for PM shift today and tomorrow, so we'll see. Bottom line, this is a short post...but a cute one to follow....

It's Halloween and you know what that means...nephew and niece Willie Boo and Ellie Sue in this year's guises! Enjoy!





Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tidying up a bit...random thoughts

Getting ready to settle in for a trio of days at News 14, including two RARE evening shifts for me...instead of being horizontal at 8pm, I'll be a forecastin' fool in a foreign hour of waking.

Tried to make lemonade from the lemons of even more rainy weather yesterday and...yes, it's true...I FINALLY got my flute website up and going. There is still a tremendous amount of tweaking and adding and shifting and figgerin' out stuff, but at least there are numerous activated pages with info and, well, that's one slow train a comin' that's long overdue. It's been an interesting learning experience...working with an older version of NetObjects Fusion that is basically WYSIWYG (wissy-wig): what you see is what you get. While a good friend set up a template, most of my pages are free-form so I can move text and pictures about freely and easily, for fast-updating and creative license. Getting sound samples made and posted for the flutes is my next big push the next few days.

www.UglyBoyFlutes.com (click)

My original site was designed for my one of a kind art I produced, "OOAK Art", which is what you're directed to, insofar as an URL. Soon I hope to have pages of some of my art, as well, but for the moment the focus is flute stuff.

If you listen to and believe the media and spin doctors in the political arena, you might for a moment believe we're rising from the precipice of disaster and the economy is improving. I can say the stock market has gone up, helping out some investment plans, and some other world indices are a bit more stable. But from the street level of the common man, I see plenty of things getting worse. Just recently have I heard from friends that their companies canceled 401K programs, canceled insurance or changed policies that now require massive deductibles...many are still hurting, and the job market is not growing. And don't get me started on banks in general, especially as it relates to mortgages and refinancing. I still love this quote from the great Robert Frost that I posted some time ago:

"A bank is a place where
they lend you an umbrella
in fair weather and ask
for it back when it
begins to rain."


Amen.

I also don't remember so much sickness running circles around so many people all around me. Some are H1N1, others just bronchial crud that hangs around far too long...and it presents a scientific dilemma when it comes to hand sanitizers. Heck, there was a potential Fried Fridays story I almost chose of a Japaneese suit company that makes an anti-H1N1 suit from a fiber that in sunlight does some whammy reaction and kills 40% of germs and such...with the ad geared toward 'dad' coming home from work, hugging his children, and knowing with a peace of mind that he has less germs on his suit. To each his own in the gimmick department.

Hand sanitizers are a peace of mind, and all you have to do in the advertising world is throw in the fear factor and you've made a sale. The dillemma is hand sanitizers do not kill all the bacteria. For that matter, the flu is a virus and by definition you can't kill it because it, itself, is not 'alive'. Only the really resistant stuff survives, so while you in good conscience feel cleaner and safer, you've basically left the bad hombres alive to replicate, which is not a good thing. For those that work in office environments where many come in contact with common items, lysol and sanitizer have their use. I just prefer to wash my hands well with soap and water and keep my hands away from my face as much as possible...and then make sure I don't step off the curb into an oncoming bus.

One place you won't get hit by a bus is on I-40 West near the NC/TN border. You won't get hit by anything because you can't go through there...a recent rockslide has taken care of that, closing both directions of travel until the end of November. And that, my friends, is one serious detour travelers now have to make. The quickest detour via major roads adds at least an hour, thanks to the rugged terrain and lack of alternate side roads. The NC mountains have had some serious rainfall for several months, now, so it's not surprising that some of the steeper slopes have given way.

And now I'll give way and bid you adieu as I go ready for the day and get the pups walked at O-dark-thirty. Yet another big swing in the temperature department today as we get up into the 70s with plenty of humidity. So the wardrobe roulette continues....

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

How do I spell "relief"?....

I had a "Sunday Salon" performance far up into northern Ashe County this past weekend, my third year doing this. Shall I say that 3.5 days totally outside the pull of cell phone and internet was both refreshing and confounding...You worry about what all you missed, yet you let Life roll on without modern trappings, as well it should. Overall it was a welcome void, no doubt.

There were phone landlines for any emergencies at the main house, but
no in-room TV. No internet. No cell service (for Verizon). Just good friends, conversation, and great food/libations. The grande dame Gayle, who just turned 80, is THE most incredible NON-80 year old you'll ever meet. Up and down the stairs like a gazelle, full of artistic dreams per the property which, come hell or highwater, will resist the tides of profit-greed interests from Florida (her words)...Gayle is a rare stalwart, that one.

The "River House" property was an old working farm along the north fork of the New River just below the Virginia border, now converted into quaint rooms and mini cottages as a B&B. With over 200 acres of property, she knew the value in seeing it preserved and developed only in a very limited way with lots of restrictions (including voluntary covenants to a local land conservancy). She was courted by several developers that tried hard to get her to 'see' the gold mine she had, and tried to show her the huge sums of money she could make if she subdivided into one-acre homesites, mainly for Floridian summer homes. If there is one thing Gayle shuns it's that type of total disrespect for natural beauty and resources.


Live with the land, not on it. Wise words.


I missed the peak color, now gone by at least a full week...yet I had the opportunity to let Molly and Mercy romp without leashes, and they had a BLAST!!!! Oh, there is quite the contentious show-off when food is involved or sleeping arrangements on the bed (Mercy wins, Molly gets the crate as long as she fits in it)...otherwise, they are melding as they should, and as I expected.

The weather Sunday was sunny and gorgeous, and as luck would have it, now that I'm back to get some work done...more rain is on the doorstep. *sigh* So while I don't have pictures of fall leaves and vistas, and don't pictures of my show (which would be nothing to look at, I assure you!), I DO have pictures of the pups at play. The lessons we could all learn from 'em...










Hard to believe this is the last week of October...fly, time, fly! Have a terrific Tuesday!

Friday, October 23, 2009

"Fried Fridays: What a bargain!"

I'm reminded of the classic neighborhood yard sale, where families try to take myriad 'dust magnets' and get a little cash for 'em. Even if the economy didn't suck a dozen eggs, there will always be those denizens of the dark who show up 30 minutes before the announced start so they can be the first to pick through the potential prizes.

Chances are they also want to tirelessly haggle for an even cheaper price.

While this is not a story about a yard sale, it does tap into that creative mindset of making the most of your morning...

DATELINE: BERLIN, GERMANY

Our 41-year old protagonist is unnamed in this turn of events. Apparently he has had a consistent track record of less than exemplary behavior, namely doing the ol' "Five Finger Stop And Shop" at various stores.

It just so happens that he had been contacted by the police to come in for questioning about an older theft case, and summarily showed up the next day and was waiting in the police building reception area...

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Simultaneously, in the nearby town of Blomberg, police were following up on a supermarket robbery fresh off the press, and had gotten rather detailed descriptions of both the getaway car as well as the two thugs.

That particular investigative patrol team had to swing back by the station to pick up some other materials when, lo and behold, one of the officers glanced at a familiar face sitting in the waiting area.

Before letting the discovery be known, he told the other officer to nonchalantly go outside and take a look around...and sure enough, there was the getaway car with the exact tag, and a fellow miscreant sitting inside, waiting....with the booty in the backseat.

Seems like our John Doe is more of a John "DOH!"...he decided to go rob a store on the way to the police station to be interrogated for another theft. Now that's maximizing your gasoline and getting a bigger bang for your buck.

Of course, that bigger bang will now be the steel ('steal'?) bars clanking shut at his new home away from home...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Let's 'hoop' it up!

If you've never been to a pow-wow or seen traditional Native American dancing, you should. It is an incredibly rich blend of history, artistry, athleticism, and some jaw-dropping hand beaded regalia (NEVER refer to their wardrobe as a costume...that's a no-no).

Of the many dances, one that always amazes me is the Hoop Dance, whereby a dancer manipulates any number of hoops, always dancing and moving through them as they organize them into a display of butterfly wings, a snake, etc. It's a dance of storytelling, an important foundation of all tradition cultures. The following link is of the renowned Dallas Arcand at Edmonton's CapitalEx in 2006:



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I've got a pretty talented puppy, alright. Molly was so inspired she wanted to try and do a hoop dance, too, and chose to work with a double-coiled dishwasher drain hose. If I do say so myself as a proud papa, she has talent!

(click pics to enlarge)







Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Let's not meet by accident...


Seems like I've sure been sitting on my butt driving for way too many hours this month...just one of those scheduling things I saw coming before October hit, but it doesn't change the fact that I don't feel as productive as I've been simply because there's not a lot I can accomplish while driving.


In my near-half century life, I've knighted myself a Road Warrior with all the miles I've driven. I watch cars around me intently, as defensive driving with acute alertness to all around you is key in staying safe.

However, coming back from the Tryon show I witnessed what I see a high percentage of the time, a situation that any observant soul could see coming without too much effort, yet a situation that someone's ignorance damn near causes pile-ups on a consistent basis. And it's committed regularly by young and old alike: Merging onto an interstate without yielding to traffic.

News flash if you didn't already know: when you merge from an on-ramp you YIELD to the traffic already on the interstate, NOT continue at speed side by side in a stupid game of chicken, getting uppity because the interstate traffic will not slow down to let you in. They're not supposed to. MERGERS should slow and wait for the next gap instead of forcing one.

In that same vein, mergers need to accelerate and get close to 'speed' so the merge can go more smoothly...even if you have to break a bit, at least you're not hitting a 60mph road at 35mph. I watched a couple in a nice new Volkswagon come down a ramp beside an 18-wheeler which could not move over...and the VW never slowed down, rode the merge lane out to the very end, still beside the truck (there WAS a space for them behind the truck), and the VW almost nailed a temporary road work sign before they came to a STOP, which is a kiss of death in heavy traffic like that.

I don't know who they were, but I was close enough to see that they looked like early retirees in fine health and appearance...pulling a classic bonehead maneuver I see daily. I call it the "Lost Art of the Merge"...I'll never understand the mentality of a merger that truly thinks traffic should yield to THEM coming onto the fray.

The other situation I ran into (just not literally) was someone who merged correctly...in the right lane were 3 camping trailer rigs, with no one in the left lane, and I was approaching them in that left lane with no one behind me. The Subaru wagon came down the ramp and did brake for the trailers...and when they merged behind the last one, at what I calculated to be around 40mph, they immediately continued merging into the outer left lane right in front of me, making me hit my brakes and lay on the horn, they were that close.

I can only assume he saw me, but who knows. After about 10 seconds the wagon hit the accelerator and took off like a rocket, passed the trailers, then settled back to 60 in the 65 zone and pitched a tent in the left lane. Riding in the left lane come hell or highwater is not illegal***(in fact, in NC it IS illegal...see following day's post), but it sure is inconsiderate and messes up traffic flow, not to mention a dangerous maneuver across lanes of traffic.

I was curious about a Top 10 list of causes of traffic accidents, of which there are several out there. The "faulty merge" was not on the list per se...here is what was on the list, basically:

Top 10 Causes of Auto Accidents

1. Cell phone use. Amen to that. Inconsistent speed is immediately evident, as well as weaving and not paying attention to signs, lights, and cars around them.

2. Fiddling with the radio/CD player. Eyes should stay on the road, not down to the itty bitty buttons on your dash because you don't like a particular song. God forbid you search for a station while you're on the cell phone and merging into traffic...

3. Eating in the car. A granola bar is do-able. Two-handing a Hardee's triple-decker Angus burger is for a rest area or parking lot only.

4. Rubbernecking. See this way too much, too...drivers just HAVE to look at a crash scene and see what all happened, driving far to slow and erratically, and troopers say get your @ss in gear, watch the road not the accident scene and keep traffic flowing. We're talking about crashes not on your side of the interstate...how many tie-ups have you been in, only to find out the accident is on the opposite side of the freeway?

5. Drinking and driving. Speaks for itself.

6. Drug use. If I were doing a Top 10 list I'd put this with #5, but who am I to tell AAA what to do...

7. Driver distraction. Your coke turns over. Billy just slapped Betsy in the back seat because she tried to grab the green crayon. Don't look away from traffic...pull over at the nearest safe area if you need to discipline or clean-up. It's very unsettling to pass a minivan with the driver turned TOTALLY around to the back seat, even if for a moment...

8. Speeding. If there is one thing I disdain it's arrogance, and speeders fill the bill. I suppose if you're out away from traffic and not impacting anyone, that's a choice you can make. But when in heavy traffic and you have the yahoos whipping at least 20mph above the speed limit, driving like they're part of a video game, I draw the line. They are dangerous and rude critters; while they do come in all ages and sizes, on my particular roads I see many out of staters that are 40-something in a tank of an SUV. Observation, only.

9. Recklessness. Kind of a nonspecific catch-all where the bad mergers could be placed. Basically any bad behavior is reckless, so it all fits in here. It is that sense of entitlement some surely feel when they're behind the steering wheel. In their doing what they want, regardless of the law, they cause others to wreck or make sudden maneuvers because of the surprise factor jerks cause popping up on someone from nowhere. One of my favorites is the tailgater that flashes their high beams at the car in front of them...

10. Shoddy road maintenance. Bad roads, potholes, poor reflective paint, etc. make for tougher than needed driving conditions. While some highway funds and projects have been boosted with the federal stimulus funds, many are neglected in an even bigger way. Highway 14 at the NC/SC state line is a classic example where NC has done a couple of repaving projects in recent years and SC hasn't touched their part of that road since the Spanish Inquisition.

Just remember the speed limit is not a suggestion, and keep it between the ditches. Godspeed to all y'all!

Monday, October 19, 2009

A new one on me....

On any given show weekend, I usually get pictures of my booth display which I change around, so I can compare set-ups and continue to tweak it. This past weekend began with the coldest and wettest outdoor show-day I've been involved with, where the high hit 49 and held, with heavy rains the night before that flooded the entrance to some of the vendor's tents. Suffice it to say the camera stayed in the car.

That night a cold front roared through, dropping several inches of snow in part of the NC mountains, and bringing strong winds that damaged some of the vendor's tents, including knocking over a pottery display and leaving it in pieces. It was not a user-friendly weekend, but as always I met some wonderful new friends and got to say hi again to many older ones, being in a former hometown of mine.

On Sunday, a long-bearded gentleman in overalls passed by and we were jovially chatting to get our minds off the windy chill, and he said something to the effect that, "People are always callin' us hillbillies and rednecks, but we want that to go away - we're Appalachian-Americans!"

Cute - had not heard that one before. I think we can all relate to political correctness...working in television, I certainly am constantly deciding what is proper to say and what is simply going too far just to pacify the squeaky PC wheels out there. And there is no shortage of that schlock.

So, with no pics and nothing really to write about this morning, I figured I'd snoop around and find some humorous PC phrases that you might want to sprinkle in your conversations...unless, of course, you're too lazy, er, uh, I mean "activity deficient"....


Hillbilly/Redneck - Appalachian-American

Unemployed - Involuntarily leisured

Thirsty - Osmotically challenged

Stained - Creatively re-dyed

Slum - Economic oppression zone

Tone-deaf - Musically delayed

Loser - Uniquely fortuned

Fat - Person of substance

Worst - Least best

Vagrant - Nonspecifically destinationed individual

Prisoner - Correctional system client

Incompetent - Uniquely proficient

Dishonest - Ethically disoriented

Dead - Living impaired

Body odor - Nondiscretionary fragrance

Bald - Comb-free


Thursday, October 15, 2009

"Fried Fridays: Like Captial One ads say..."


"What's in YOUR wallet?..."


Hold that thought...almost switched horses this morning to change my Fried Friday's winning story...just read where a justice of the peace in Louisiana refused to marry an interracial couple on the grounds of the children-to-be's best interest by saving them from ridicule of not being accepted by any ethnic group. I think that story speaks for itself, so i'll return to the Atilla the Hun type ad from Capital One...both stories are barbaric, but one is actually humorous...

We carry much of our lives in our wallets...from the ever so important driver's license, to credit and debit cards, to cash (well, I hear SOME people carry cash these days!), photos, and much more. To lose said wallet is like losing a part of yourself, and it's highly unsettling in any situation.

DATELINE: LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS

An unidentified 23 year-old man had his wallet one minute, and in the blink of a robbery at gunpoint at someone's house, didn't have it. I have no doubt all kinds of things flash through your mind at that point, and I don't want to find out what all it is.

Oh, I should tell you this young man was committing the robbery. Seems he dropped his wallet accidentally when he fled the scene of the crime.

I've got to assume that he somehow knew the victim because he had their phone number.

(crickets getting ready to chirp with glee...)

Yep, the robber had the foresight (or total lack thereof) to call the victim and....

(Crickets...on your mark, get set.....GO!)

...ask for his wallet back.

("and the crickets have gone berserk!...")

Trust me, it gets better. So the robber told the victim to meet him at a service station in North Little Rock...only that phone call came while the police were actually interviewing the victim. The police promptly went to the gas mart and, after short hoof race, caught the wallet-less young man who now does runway modeling of orange jumpsuits.

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Got a weekend art show in Tryon, NC...glad to see the rain out of the forecast! Enjoy the fall like chill, unless you're in parts of Pennsylvania where you can enjoy the snowy blanket of winter!

Things to do on rainy days...

Well, I thought of two things of the many you can do on rainy days....

The first is to take pictures of water droplets (click to enlarge)...














The second is to nap, and nap often...!




Tuesday, October 13, 2009

"Ch-ch-ch-....OMG!!!"


I have not seen much TV lately, given my schedule and show activity...yesterday as I passed the weather baton to my mid-day cohort Tara, we got to chatting and catching up and she mentioned this crazy ad she saw on TV...I googled it and, well, it's a strange Chia world out there (and just about in time for the holidays - imagine that!)


What's borderline laughable and unbelievable is the TV ad itself, which is embedded in the home page I'm linking you to...it's a 'flash' movie, so if you're computer doesn't have a flash player (the vast majority do) you won't be able to see it. Anyway, it's just really strange how the seriousness and flowery, over-the-top the ad copy is, put up against a clay pot of our President you can watch grow a head of cow fodder. When I first watched it I honestly didnt' know if it was a Saturday Night Live joke skit or not...it's simply bizarre and humorous. Click on the pic below and grab a bag of popcorn as you'll watch this classic time and time again...

(EDITOR'S NOTE: This is in no way an endorsement. I was not sent one to review it. I did not and will not buy one, and not because it's Obama because I happen to like the guy. I just needed to laugh...maybe you do too.)

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And now for a gratuitous Molly pic...as I noted earlier, her transmission has 2 gears: high speed and sleep. Yesterday she crashed on one of my open tool kits - too cute not to snap a shot (click to enlarge).

An itty bit on some itty bits!




Monday, October 12, 2009


R.I.P.


(ca. 2004 - Oct. 11, 2009)

I knew this day was coming, but happening now was not a good thing! Guess there never would be a good time, now that I think about it. Above is my now-deceased Delta router-shaper table that I used to hollow out my flute blanks. The built-in motor is underneath the table, which I raise and lowered with knobs.

I did add the Pro-Dog fence on top, which made my work easier...and if you click to enlarge the pic, you will see a box and several wires hanging below the unit at the bottom. That's the whole starter switch box...one of the design flaws was that dust was able to get into the on-off switch and would eventually prevent the unit from turning on...and taking the unit out and apart to fix that was a pain, so much so that I just let it hang...which actually stopped the dust infiltration! Go figure...

Well, I was running the largest bit I use, a 1.5" diameter bulletnose bit, which upon seizing a third time in a piece of figured Oregon Myrtle (I'm guessing what happened) made the bearings seize and the whole motor, coils, etc. start to smoke heavily. No fire, but this unit has been hobbling from pieces taken from an older table and yesterday was the day it went belly up.

Normally, not a big issue except the 'grrrrrr' factor of having to go to a store and get another one and spend money you either didn't anticipate or have, something we can all relate to in one way or another, eh?! Here is the biggest issue of all: it's neither made nor available anymore. Hasn't been for a few years, apparently; so I've since found out, Black & Decker bought out Delta and decided to drop that tool, and there is not one single other item out there like it in the prosumer market.

There are routers and tables that you add a router to to use, but not a unit with a built-in motor. Saw one for sale on eBay but it went for more money than I wanted to spend...I'll snoop Craigslist and see what I can find, but I was unaware the machine was a dead horse heading for extinction. The bottom line is, I'm screwed after I finish up what flutes are already glued and ready to be tuned and sanded.

This a day after the 26th Annual Church Street Festival in Waynesville Saturday...the sporadic showers didn't help, and I'm sure the economy didn't help, and it is a show that I've decided to drop next year unless I do move forward on my creative ideas to get back into watercolors and create wooden sculptures with non-flute pieces of wood. One day shows are hard to set and break down for just 7 hours of customer time, as well.

The same fair last year was a rather poor sales day for me, as well; however, I had the surprise of my special dragonfly drone flute winning 3rd place AND the flute sold 15 minutes later...made the day look good on paper. I was hoping that might happen again, and prepared a nice solo display of the Green Heron, complete with the photos I'd taken that inspired the flute, and some descriptor cards explaining the creation, the Grandfather Rocks on the flute's foot, etc. Vendors were to put the yellow ribbon seen by the work to be judged...

The first two judges that happened by with a clipboard could not have stopped for more than 2 seconds each, honestly...like a rolling stop at a stop sign most of us make when no one is in sight. They made a check in a box and kept walking...didn't inspect, didn't ask for it to be played, nada, zip, zilch. In fact, only one of the judges that came by truly inspected it and asked for it to be played, so not a good sign in the monetary prize categories. Nary an honorable mention by show's end.

And so it goes...glad, now, that I accepted 4 days of fill-in work at News 14 this week! I do have a two-day show in Tryon, NC next weekend, and given that's one of my former stomping grounds with family there, I'll at least have lots of company and free lodging! :-)

And, gee, wouldja look at that...more rain coming in! Sunshine has been hard to buy in parts of NC the past, well, weeks...and now there is more incoming. Should give me time to stay indoors and research whatthehell I'm going to do about a new routing system for my flutes...


Friday, October 09, 2009

"Fried Fridays: Literally..."

Figuratively, this world is chock full of 'fried' individuals as well as groups.

How about the Calgary, Alberta duo that jumped the fence at the Siberian Tiger enclosure after midnight one night...then one of them stuck his hand inside the cage only to have his arm mauled...

...or the wise regulations officials put in place in Melbourne, Australia in preparation for the hugely popular Bathurst 1000. In hopes of reducing alcohol-related crime, they're putting a limit on alcohol consumption on any given race day (you can pick only one, and you can't combine your poisons): 24 cans of strong beers, 36 cans of weak/mid strength beer, or 4 litres of wine. Per person. Per day. Eegads.

Kids, listen up: you live at home, you live by your parents' rules, end of discussion. You violate rules, you have consequences...any part of this you don't understand? One Falmouth, MA 18-year old didn't...he hauled off and hit his 15 year-old brother, so mom made the decision to take his cell phone away as an initial consequence. The next day he went on a mini rampage, kicked his mother in the throat, head-butted his brother, and hit and bit his father, himself a corrections officer. Dad managed to get a set of cuffs on the out of control teenager, and the police even had to put on leg shackles to subdue him before hauling him off to jail. It's time that family put the FUN back into 'dysfunctional'...

Today, though, we get literal about today's 'fried' story...

DATELINE: QUINCY, MASSACHUSETTS

Don't know what's up with that Massachusetts water these days...

Christina Galipeau (22) and Eugene Jackson (33) went into the purveyor of the Golden Arches there in Quincy. You can rest assured that when they went to order the cashier asked them, "Would you like fries with that?"

Why, yes they did, thank you very much. Make it a large.

"...nor Hell a fury like a woman scorned."
- William Congreve (1697)

"...nor Hell a fury like a woman
who didn't get the right sized
french fry order."

- Bob Child (2009)

As is the case with any short news story, essential information, it would seem, has been left out. If I got the wrong order, I would simply bring it to their attention and they would make it right...happens often enough, I'm sure. But that's how I'd approach it...

Ms. Galipeau must have eaten some tainted Wheaties for breakfast because her enraged response was to throw a handful of change into the cashier's face, with her appropriately matched mate then picking up a pair of those 2-foot tall 'Wet Floor' cones and hurling them behind the counter, cutting another employee's nose.

Boy, that'll teach THEM to not screw up an order again...

I'm never short of amazed at the sheer ignorance and pathetic, boorish behavior that abounds in our society. And this was one story that really was 'fried'...

I think I'll just stick with a baked potato at home.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Upcoming shows...

I put my eggs into a couple of show baskets this month, so letting the sawdust and chips fly as I finish up some new stock. Thought the natural scree of shavings was rather artistic, myself, from the jointer I set on top of my 13" planer. One day I'll have a bonafide shop and space to not piggyback the tools...in this case, the near-100 pound planer is not fun to constantly move around, so it served a dual purpose for some quick jointing...


SATURDAY OCTOBER 10
26th Annual Church Street Fair (LINK)
Waynesville, NC
downtown, Main Street
10a - 5p

High-quality art show that I wish were a 2-day show but instead is a one-day wonder. Ugly Boy Flutes is booth #29 very close to Mast General Store (on a line to the famed Whitman's Bakery), easily identified by the two 6-foot tall turquoise kokopelli figures that guard the entrances. I wish it weren't so, but it looks like showers are likely all day, so bring rain gear. The one day you want dry is the wettest of the week...c'est la guerre!

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SATURDAY/SUNDAY OCTOBER 17/18
2nd Annual Arts & Crafts Fall Festival (LINK)
Tryon, NC
373 Harmon Field Rd.
10a - 5p, both days

This is my former stomping grounds and where family lives...QUAINT area to explore, and while it is not a huge show, there are some neat artists in the region. The Tryon Arts & Crafts building has a wonderful museum and shop, as well, at one end of the Harmon Field area. Fall colors should be doing their thing, too!

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Insofar as new flutes, I'm stocking up on half-pipes in myriad keys as the economy has created a higher than normal demand for that less-expensive style...uncompromised sound quality, just in a unique design that won't roll off a table! There is one 'bagpipe' drone available, an unusual design...and the Green Heron will have a special display as well (hoping a discriminating collector might want to adopt it!).

Cheers, y'all!

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Good Golly, Miss Molly!

(click on pics to enlarge the cuteness)

You may already be well aware that I'm an animal lover. I'm also a big proponent of adopting rescue animals; I highly recommend that anyone looking to add a 4-legged companion to their family start with any of the many local shelters that try to find 'forever homes' for their charges.

Mercy wasn't an only 'child'...she had two older adoptees that crossed the Rainbow Bridge a few years ago, but I never replaced them. Mercy is quite content in her solo role on the throne, but I've always leaned toward getting another dog for company. While I advocate adopting older dogs, for myriad reasons, it just so happened that I made a casual stop by a local adoption fair a week ago and, well, the rest is history.

I got squarely blind-sided...


Meet "Molly".....

Hard to believe she and her litter mates were abandoned. She's a Border Collie mixed with the great unknown, and as I write about 9-10 weeks old...

To say Mercy is glad to have her in her life would be a bold-faced lie, worthy of a lightning bolt upside the head. However, I have no doubt she will be a wonderful mother-figure for the wee one once Molly gets out of her pestering stage!...



She is a pistol, no doubt, chock full of personality and energy...and sharp puppy teeth that enjoy being engaged. She actually came with two speeds: full-bore and sleep. The sleep gear seems to only work for 3-4 hours at best, making for melodious overnight vocalizations...

She is endlessly inquisitive and playful, and knows no strangers...yet....

This is the only water she's been in so far...didn't do too much before hopping out, but if she hangs with Mercy she will quickly learn that creeks and lakes are pretty cool places to explore...

And so this post ends with many updates to follow, I have no doubt...let the adventurous games begin!