The 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.
OK … 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 …
Waffle 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 …
Shabbat 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.
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.
Yes, you may wish me Merry Christmas.
And I will return the heartfelt greeting along with a silent blessing.
בָּרוּךְ אַתָה, יְיָ, שׁוֹמֵר אֶת-כָּל-אֹהֲבָיו
Friday, preparation day rolls around again. It seems like it was just here a couple of days ago. The blue norther pulled out last night, and it is 53° this morning. It will get into the low 70’s for Shabbat. Maybe I can get a little porch sitting in.
One of the rabbi’s at my old congregation in Denver has passed on, and they are holding a memorial for him this week. I wish I could attend, but my wanderin’ days are over. 20 miles is my absolute maximum trip these days.
It looks like a late breakfast today, more of a lunchfast than a brunch. But a handful of cookies and a dog to share them with takes care of the hole in the belly.
And the newsfeeds. Congress can’t balance a budget, but can pass a continuing resolution. If I could enact one amendment, it would be that a Congress that doesn’t balance a budget must be fired Jan. 1st. A convict who killed his pregnant wife and children gets love letters and nude photo’s from admiring women. I am not going to comment on this one. And Hershey’s™ Kisses lose their tip, and an investigation is launched to figure out why. Maybe this feckless Congress can investigate it.
So goes the day.