One handed gods …

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101914_1729_Somedays1.jpgTuesday.  Not much to be said for this day. But I haven’t posted anything in a while, so I’ll set in front of a blank page and put down my usual stream-of-consciousness meanderings.  Tiw, the one-handed god of the day apparently stuck his hand in the mouth of a wolf and lost it.  That is a rather stupid thing for a god to do, so a minor day of the week is his reward.

Talk radio entertains me and the bird this day.  Budgies thrive on noise and battle, but people probably shouldn’t. So now I am caught up on the political hate for the week.  I feel so  .. informed.  It is easy to see a persons political affiliations by their use of memes and narratives, and just as easy to ignore the words that follow them.  I am more curious to see who wins the pissing contest than I am whether the wall gets built or not.  As a nation, I believe that we passed the point of no return a long time ago, and the natural course is a downward spiral.  The best we can do is slow the inexorable helix to destruction. It will come.

So with those cheery predictions, I wander on.

The weather has been warm for the last few days, and the air-conditioner has come on in the afternoons, but that trend will likely end for a week or so. But spring here can’t be afar off.  It is already time to start tomatoes indoors.  If I was going to start tomatoes.  I really haven’t had much luck with them.

The day has marched on, the coffee cup is empty and so is the pot.  And it is time to stop the blather.

Good afternoon.

Not Too Dull for Beef Stew

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101914_1729_Somedays1.jpgStill 44° as I slowly awaken to Preparation Day. But later in the day, it will warm to the mid 60’s for a week, then the winter rains return, albeit somewhat warmer than the December ones were. I am sure glad to see the sun. It has been awhile.

The public holidays are done, thankfully. No Christmas music, cute Santa’s peddling merchandise, midnight fireworks or frazzled shoppers for awhile as sanity returns. Just the slow rotation of seasons and the ever-growing patches of weeds and wildflowers out my window. It will be a month or two before the wildflowers pop, though.

Image result for beef stewI got all the fixin’s for a winters beef stew. I try to get the cheapest stew meat available, brown it really good, the pressure cook the snot out of it until it almost falls apart. And a turnip, some red spuds, carrot strips and peas. I normally cook the spuds separately and add them to the stew before serving so they don’t get so mushy. I’ll probably start that Sunday … but a good stew improves with age, so I’ll make enough for five or six meals, and freeze it in servings to be gently rewarmed in the slow cooker. And yeah, I cheat a little with some cornstarch to give it a body. Served with hunks of sourdough and I am happy …

That is about all there is to say here in my dull retirement paradise. I never thought that I could appreciate dull to the extent that I do. Excitement is the enemy of serenity …

And coffee is the friend of slow risers …

Good morning!


Life in the mini age …

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072814_1511_AntiSemitis1.jpgThe second day of the Gregorian year, but a rather nondescript day on the Jewish and Chinese calendars arrives gloomy, cold and wet.  I don’t know what had happened to Tic, our latest canine addition, but he jumped onto the bed and was trying to hide from something that happened to him out in the rain.  He probably climbed the fence, and a big dog chased his arrogant little butt back across the fence.  So I arose before I was totally awake.  But Mr. Bladder was slowly awakening too, so I had already given up trying to snooze late.  All that never happens to me on nice days when waking early is a pleasant surprise.

I bought an Amazon mini a long while back when they first came out.  You probably know them as Alexa. But here in the wilds, internet is spotty, and it didn’t work well. I then tried the google mini and it worked very well even with the poor internet connection.  So I left the Amazon plugged in, but seldom use it for anything other than a paper weight.

It recently started glowing green, and I didn’t know what all that was about until I received an order from Amazon. Then it happily clicked and quit glowing.  Aha! Amazon is reminding me that I have an order arriving!  I get a lot of stuff from them these days.  I love not having to schlep into town for an electric plug to repair a broken one, and some gourmet items that l love are also available from them.

But it is a little unnerving to hear it go “Cleeplunk!” and start glowing on delivery day. As a geezer, I am not so worried about privacy much.  I am sure that some nefarious government agent is noting my aversion to stewed prunes and my problems with various bodily functions, but I really don’t know what evil can happen to me if the government finds out I have a slow gut.

The google mini has become my birds entertainment, and it also serves to let me know when meals are ready.  Snook has learned to use them to call me to the table leaving her free to guard the food from the beagle.  I have three set up, one in the kitchen, one in the bedroom by Snooks computer, and one in my studio. Ah! Brave new world!

So the rainy day unfolds.  But a warm coffee cup seems to mitigate the gloom and the birds early morning banjo music.  It just might be a good year after all.

Good morning!


… bang! ….

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101914_1729_somedays1-e1544975170895.pngOK … the celebrations are over, and it is back to the same old stuff that we celebrated the passing of. Mutts are finally at rest.  We didn’t expect our newest neighbor would be a fan of fireworks. He has pets of his own.

But starting at sundown and going to midnight, his weezers, zingers, bangers and sparkling chirpers lit the back yard in monotonous succession while four frightened mutts in my house tried to find something to crawl into. He must have spent two-weeks wages on the damned things, and he lives in a double wide.

And the extra large helping of black-eyed peas and corn bread at dinner didn’t help the old stomach ulcer, and it made life miserable until sunup in retaliation.

Gray skies and late night rains in the forecast with temps in the 40’s.  A rainy week ahead it seems. But it is winter, and I don’t go out in it anymore. So as long as I got power, I’m good.  Snook was up much earlier and got the banjo playin’ going for the spoiled budgie. So its coffee, fiddles and banjo’s bringing in the New Year.  Just like it did the old year.

Good morning, and hope your New Year is still happy …

Sous Vide and Linseed Oil

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101914_1729_Somedays1.jpgWaffle Day rolls around again.  The first day of the week.  Today is new toy day too.  My sous vide heater is all set up to cook rosemary chicken for dinner tonight. Fresh sprig of rosemary sits in the fridge with the thawing breast.  A little salt, a little pepper, some olive oil.

I was going to brown the breast in a skillet because I didn’t want to get a propane head for the torch, but one genius mentioned that he used an electric heat gun. Viola! I got one of those in the tool chest, sitting unused all these years.  Who knew a tile tool was a cookery item!

My new kitchen island is set up, and we are migrating some kitchen utensils over to it. But it still reeks of linseed oil and I have set up a box fan to air it out. So far it has been airing out for a day, and it is still stinking up the house, albeit a little less today … either that or I am getting used to the stench. But we desperately needed the counter space, and when the stink is gone, it will be a fine addition to our kitchen.

I got stuff.  Lots of stuff.  And I need to get rid of stuff.  I wonder if I could just give it to a flea market seller and split the take.  If I trusted a flea market maven, that is … and that is the problem.  I don’t want to sit out in a lawn chair all day while people pick through my stuff.

And I have a mirror cut into a magen David that needs to be remounted over the mantel.  It somehow fell off the hook, but only damaged the wood parts that I could repair.  I need to make a more secure mount for it yet.  Maybe this week it will get done.

And new metal numbers for the mailbox. The neighbors got the kitchen island, and hand carried the 200 lbs of material over to my yard when the delivery man left it at the wrong address.  That will be a priority to get them mounted when they arrive later this week.

But for the moment … there is coffee and a computer keyboard …

Good morning!

Huffery and Puffery

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101914_1729_Somedays1.jpgShabbat dawns cool and crisp at 40° now that one band of December rains have passed. But another is tracking in tomorrow Praise music plays on the puck, and a joyful budgie greets the day with me. The new kitchen island is installed and we are getting used to a big chunk of cabinetry sitting in the middle of a once vast sea of linoleum. But I am the sort that needs four pots, two skillets and seven bowls to fry an egg, and the added counter top will be a welcome addition.

Not much on the newsfeeds.  Mostly hyperventilating of impeachment proceedings and righteous huffery and puffery on the shutdown.  I don’t care enough to carefully read what the details are.  I am making a concerted effort to stay below the governments radar, much the same way common people ages ago treated a tyrannical King.  Hide the harvest and the women and say nothing.

I am excited about getting a sous vide heater for slow cooking, along with a induction cook top for frying.  I can hardly wait to try them out.  But this morning I will go about brunch preparations the old way.  Thaw a couple of cups of frozen hash-browns, fry ‘em up with some onions, fry up some turkey sausage, and fry up a couple of runny eggs.

But I have a little time to sit and write, and let the inspirational music suffuse my soul.

Good morning!

And the unutterable is still unutterable

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For those of you who don’t know, Rusty Armor is a nom-de-plume, a stage name, and a name that hides a huge gap in my life that I don’t talk about much.  Rusty Armor was a name I began using in the late 80’s, early 90’s to give me a little cover when I wrote of some living people I had met during my running years.  Some of those people are still living, though I suspect someone is changing their nappies at Sunny Hill Nursing Home right now.

Yeah, I really was a movie actor.  Not a well-known one, however.  But I have had a few speaking parts in films that I am sure many of you have at least heard about, if not actually seen.  But I despised Hollywood, and most of the actors I met.  I even despised my own talent, both at acting, and getting acting jobs.  Getting a job in films for me was a lot like working for Rent-A-Bum, except the pay was a lot better and they usually fed you on the set.  You sat around in the shade a lot, too.  It sure as hell beat unloading boxcars.

But I did a lot of other things during that hole in my life.  Fleeing after a disastrous marriage breakup, I just drifted … it was a real fast drift, however.  I lived in the desert with a Yaqui brujo, drilled oil in Wyoming, work carnival flat joints and rides, picked peaches in California, narrowly escaping a serial killer that ran crews while there, bartended in Reno and hopped freight trains to get around.

I ended back in New Mexico, lived on a commune, met some of the Manson family, hung with a few well known writers, a very famous poet and musician and some assorted writers, but finally ended up in the third floor of a run down home haven for homeless men one mean February in Denver.  I don’t even know how I got there.  My life changed at that point, and that is another tale, one without so damned many secrets.

I was going to try and flesh out that time before here, but once again, there are too many things that I just don’t want to reveal, and I don’t want to spend the time working around them without leaving questions.

But for those who think that I am just some old burned out Texan, I hate to destroy that illusion. I kinda like that image, though it is a bullshit one.

And once again, I am not able to utter the unutterable.