Saturday, December 25, 2010

Happy Christmas Day

By now you've all opened your presents, eaten to surfeit, and are basking in the afterglow. I hope it was a fine day and you got what you wanted. I ended the day at the casino, where the spirit of giving was alive and well. The place was packed to the rafters.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas Eve

Allow me to present a small token of joy in the spirit of the season. I plan a long, busy day with a house full of in-laws plus my daughters, granddaughter, and her daddy. What's not to like? Any football on?

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

True Grit

True Grit opened today and I caught the 12:50 show. You probably know the basic plot: 14-year-old Mattie hires grizzled Deputy Marshal Rufus "Rooster" Cogburn to track down Tom Cheney, who'd killed and robbed Mattie's father. Also on Cheney's track is a Texas Ranger, LeBoeuf, who wants to return Cheney to Texas on a murder charge. This doesn't sit well with Mattie, who wants Cheney to suffer for the crime against her father. This leads to conflict on the trail as the trio set out to find their quarry, believed to have thrown in with the Ned Pepper gang.

The movie is by turns gritty, funny, touching, suspenseful, and uplifting. Mattie's sense of moral purpose and Cogburn's world-weary manner provide a fine contrast and grist for many an amusing exchange. The same goes for the one-upmanship moments between Rooster and LeBoeuf. Also, the grim experiences Mattie has along the trail transform her from a pushy kid to a more self-aware young woman. The actress who played the part is excellent, as are all the other players.

I hope this movie will be enjoyed by the great unwashed and not just Western fans, and it leads to more quality films in the genre being produced. I loved it. Even the damn fool on the other end of the aisle who felt the need to audibly react to every scene didn't sully my enjoyment of the movie. I loved it and recommend it wholeheartedly.

As you might have guessed, the illo here has nothing to do with the film.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Catching Up

I've been silent lately and there are reasons. One is my right shoulder. I have a torn rotator cuff (all those years as a big league pitcher took their toll). Typing for more than a few minutes is very painful. I'll probably have surgery in January for that and it'll take about six months to be back to normal. For part of that time I'll be a vertiable left hander, and that will make typing very difficult, if not impossible. Today I talked to a doctor about prostate cancer. I don't have it, and I'm in a low risk category, numerically speaking, but just to be safe I'm going to have a biopsy, also in January. I've also been doing the usual Xmas stuff and corrupting my older girl with a couple of trips to the casino (I'm ahead $122, she won, too).

Pictured is my granddaughter, Sofia, at about three weeks, with her mother.

It seems like the latest overused phrase in advertising these days is "amazing." Seems like everything you can buy is amazing. Amazing salad, amazing service, amazing experience, amazing scarf. How easily are people amazed?

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Remembering John Lennon

I'm a huge fan and admirer of John Lennon. I clearly remember my sorrow the day he was murdered, and my anger when I learned his killer got life instead of death. Thirty years ago today he died, but his music is as fresh and enjoyable to me today as it was then and all the way back into the sixties. When I was 17 I was in a garage band called The Violations. This was 1965 so of course we sang a lot of Beatles songs (those we could, a lot were beyond our ranges). I usually sang the John parts in our harmonies, making me feel an extra kinship with him. I sure wish he was around today.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Remember Pearl Harbor

A day that will live in infamy, or until a few generations pass and everything's forgotten. Well, the Cap'n remembers. I had an uncle who was wounded during the attack and since I grew up as a Navy brat most of the adult males I knew were veterans of the war in the Pacific. Here's to them.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Happy Birthday Kristine, Again

I wanted to show a more recent photo of the baby. This is it.

Happy Birthday Uncle Georgie

On this day in 1839, American hero and soldier George Armstrong Custer was born in New Rumley, Ohio. He died for our sins at the Little Big Horn on June 25, 1876.

Happy Birthday Kristine

My baby is 20 today, and every moment has been one of pure joy.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Done and Done

Retirement. As MLK said, "In the words of the old Negro spiritual, free at last, free at last, thank God A'mighty, we are free at last!" That's the editorial we, there. It was a quiet, uneventful day. I did my final processing, cleaned out the few remaining items from my locker, said adios to a couple of people, and drove away. I admit to giving vent to a rousing rebel yell as I passed through the main gate, but otherwise there was no celebration. I didn't want one.

When I was working I always hoped for jury duty. I found being on a jury interesting and I prefered being at the courthouse to being at work. Plus, I still got paid and didn't have to take leave. But I didn't get tasked for jury duty this year, until...
I got my mail this afternoon and found a jury summons therein. My reporting date is the same day as my official retirement in January. Nice timing, people.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

One More Day

Really, six-tenths of a day. Today I got signed out by a bunch of organizations/sections (clinic, finance, pass & ID, etc) and tomorrow I do the final two. I made sure I gave back my Restricted Area Pass and Flightline Competency Card so I can't do any work tomorrow. It'll be soooo nice to stay in bed in the morning, to avoid the freeway traffic, and to get busy on my many projects around the old homestead.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Two Days to Go

I plan to spend as much of my final two days (one day, six hours to be exact--I work 10-hour days) clearing the base. That is, going hither and yon getting boxes on a sheet of paper signed off by various people in various sections.

Evan Lewis wondered what image I'd use to illustrate two. I thought about The Dynamic Duo or one of the better comedy teams, but these innocent lasses from the brush of Milton Caniff seemed more appropriate.

Lately I've seen a lot of people using "hoard" when they mean "horde." A hoard is hidden or stored fund or supply (I looked it up) and a horde is a swarm or throng, as of people, animals, or insects. If you're going to write or edit, you need to know these things.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Three Days to Go

Three days. Two days, six hours, to be exact. Three is a good number. My beloved Three Stooges claimed it and I'm soitenly glad they were part of my life.

It looks like I'm leaving work just in time, too. Today we learned that we're now subject to random drug testing, and O'Bama wants to freeze our salaries. Not that I'm in much better shape financially by retiring since Barak also wants to cut Socialist Insecurity.

I don't use drugs, but I can't see any reason to implement the testing. Supposedly it's because of our sensitive positions. Like urinating into a porcelain bowl that has three mirrors and a witness isn't a sensitive position. At least none of this will take place until after I'm gone, so to hell with the lot of them. I just chalk it up to one more reason I'm glad to be out of that little Bedlam. Bitter? Me? Not really, just fed up.

Len Moffatt

Since most of you read the same blogs I do, I'm sure you know by now that Len Moffatt has passed away. Len was a cornerstone science fiction and mystery fan, a Sherlockian, a John D. MacDonald expert (along with wife June), and a Marine in WWII. He wasn't very tall but he filled a lot of space with his kindness, wit, energy, and achievements. Without the Moffatts there wouldn't be a Bouchercon, period. At the recent B'con in San Francisco I shared the honor of being named the Don Sandstrom Award winner with the Moffatts, and I'm glad Len was able to receive this recognition while he was still alive. My sincere condolences to his family and large circle of friends.

Sunday, November 28, 2010


I've been watching a lot of Robin Hood TV shows lately. The ones made in England starring Richard Greene. An actor named Alan Wheatley was cast as the Sheriff of Nottingham and I noticed he had a minor but unmistakable lisp. That got me to thinking of other actors who had lisps. Humphrey Bogart and Boris Karloff come to mind. Daffy Duck? That's a stretch. I once had a girlfriend with a little lisp, too. Can you think of any others?

Friday, November 26, 2010

Four Days to Go

Yep, just a Fab Four days left til retirement. Next week will do it. To be exact, three days and 6 hours, or 36 hours.

I visited Baby Sofia earlier this evening. She was perfect; slept the whole time. I say this because my mother likes to read about it.

The last two days have been a football tsunami. I saw two games and part of a third yesterday and as I type this I'm watching my third game today. The first two I saw at work. We had a down day at the base and there was nothing to do but watch TV. On a regular work day there's ALMOST nothing to do but watch TV. I really enjoyed the Alabama/Auburn game, which Auburn won 28-27 after being behind 21-0. I don't know why I'm anti-Bama, but that's the way it is.

I picked up my younger girl's birthday/Xmas present today, an electric keyboard. She's very musically talented and I can hear her playing downstairs as I type this. I can also hear the Boise State-Nevada game, as alluded to earlier. The store where I picked up the keyboard is near the Tacoma Mall, and while there was a lot of traffic it moved quickly and my parking karma was in force when I needed a space. I also had a 15% off coupon, which was good for today only, so I was determined to use it no matter what the crowds were like.

Have a nice weekend.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Birthday, Baby

After two days of agony and discomfort, my girl Stephanie gave birth to Sofia via c-section. All is well and everyone is fine, thanks. Here's a photo of her at about 20 minutes old. They put some gunk in her eyes to make them look runny, but it's not a problem. She's 7 lb, 11 oz and 20 1/2 inches. We like her.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me

Seems like only a year ago I was marking another birthday. I'm starting to feel it more and more, too.

As mentioned yesterday, my little one took me to see the new Harry Potter movie. I liked it, as usual, and since it has been so long since I read the book I didn't recall anything. I could probably make the same claim if I'd read it last week. This installment sets up the final confrontation that will happen in the next movie, so there were some moments of exposition and quite a lot of time Harry and his pals spent camping out on the English countryside. Also some exciting action scenes, only one of which had the annoying MTV effects I'm always carping about. My daughter loved it and couldn't wait to call all of her friends and urge them to see it--with her in most cases. I see no reason to miss it unless you're disinterested in the HP penomenon.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Five Days to Go

I can almost taste it now.

On the baby front, she may be here by Tuesday.

Harry Potter, on the other hand, will be here tomorrow. I plan to see it with my younger girl.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Six Days to Go

We had a windstorm Monday that knocked out the power. I stayed up late to tend the fire in the fireplace, so I took Tuesday off. As you might know, the weather here stinks right now. But I worked today and that X's one more off the countdown calendar.

Yesterday was my daughter's due date, but no baby has appeared yet.

I'm in a good mood, though. Visa reversed a charge I'd disputed and the jackass who worked on my roof accepted the amount I sent him, so that's done with. Oh, and the windstorm blew all the leaves off the roof.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Seven Days to Go

Lucky Seven. Magnificent Seven. The 7th Cavalry. Come on, Seven. Better yet, even though I went to work today it was a down day so all the high sheriffs stayed home. No one disturbed me when I caught my daily cat nap in the break room.

Seven Days in May. The Seven Little Foys. Seventh Avenue. Seven Come Eleven. Seven Brides For Seven Brothers. Seven Cities of Gold. Seven Keys to Baldpate. The Seven Percent Solution. The Seven Seas. The Seven Samauri. Seven is a good number, as you can see, and a popular one. Lucky Seven smiles upon me today and I like it.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Vet's Day

I'm a veteran but I don't feel like I need any special recognition. The ones who were hurt mentally and physically deserve it far more than I. But I want to offer my personal salute to my brothers and sisters in arms on this special day set aside for us. I'm proud to be a member of the club.

Now then, I was sent a list of all the businesses that would be doing special things for vets today, like a free donut at Dunkin' or a free meal at Applebee's. On that list was a free 6-inch sub from Subway. So since I was near the local Subway I went in and asked if they were giving away subs to vets. The kid at the counter didn't know what I was talking about so he asked the manager/owner. The answer was no. That kind of ticked me off since I have bought a lot of subs in there over the years. But never again. The next one is only a few miles farther down the road and I'll go there from now on.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Dave Niehaus, RIP

Dave was the voice of the Seattle Mariners as long as I can remember. Last year he was inducted into the Announcers section of the Baseball Hall of Fame. When you consider the team has had about half a dozen winning seasons since it came here in 1977, that's a remarkable achievement. He had to sit through almost all of those games and keep people entertained, and he was damn good at it. I noticed last season he stopped working the TV side after the third inning and I assumed he went to the radio side. I had the feeling they were preparing the viewers for a new announcer, but I thought Dave would retire and he'd have a few good years to enjoy himself away from the ballpark. Alas, it is not to be. I'll miss his enthusiam, strong voice, love of the game, and decency.

It would be too much to hope that Jon Miller, just released by ESPN, would be his replacement. Without the unbearable Joe Morgan, of course.


I'm saddened to announce that Buddy, my daughter Stephanie's dog, was put down today. He was 11 and in poor health for some time. Buddy was a sweet-tempered, amiable guy, large and a little clumsy, but always happy to see you. He loved attention and would take all you could give. A very good boy. He'll be missed.

My countdown continues. Eight working days left. You might be happy to note that I actually worked hard today. Well, maybe not hard but steadily. I'm also cleaning out my locker piece by piece, shredding cerificates from our countless annual training BS, taking home reading matter that has accumulated, and deciding if I want to donate my salt and pepper shakers to the break room. Salt, probably; pepper, no. I'm using a salt substitute at home but I use regular pepper and that stuff's expensive.

Tomorrow: Holiday!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Nine Days to Go

Nine is my favorite number. When I was a radio man in the Army I learned the proper way to say nine on the radio was niner. Niner. That's funny. Our First Sergeant's call sign was Scrub Throng Niner Alpha, so we wise guy RTO's referred to him as Niner. Behind his back, of course.

All this Army talk reminds me of the sweat mags of the fifties. On the left is a sample of the fine fare they offered.

And the countdown continues...

Friday, November 05, 2010

Ten Days to Go

Nine days and six hours if you want to get technical. But since it means 10 days of waking to the alarm at 0530 I count it as 10 full days. I can't wait. I can taste the freedom already. I can hear myself crying poverty within a year, but what the hell. And how about that Shirley Jones?

Friday, October 29, 2010

Fifteen Days to Go

I'll really feel like it's happening when November rolls around. Looking over my leave time, I've determined I have 13 full days, one 6-hour day, and one 6 1/2-hour day left (I work 10-hour shifts) before I walk out, middle finger at full staff. That's still 15 morning wakeups, though.

I haven't mentioned the San Francisco Bouchercon but I was there, along with the wife. It was great to connect with blogger Bill Crider and his wife Judy, and fellow fans like Jeff and Ann Smith, Art Scott, Steve Stilwell, Kate Derie, Janet Rudolph, Ted Fitzgerald, Maggie Mason, Leila Dobscha, and Rick Robinson, the latter just in time to say good-bye. Best of all, I had a chance to meet fellow Dapa-Emmer Tina Karleson, a beauty whose presence lit up every room she entered. I also met Bill and Judy's daughter Angela, and her husband. Lovely young woman. Angela, that is.

I also had a chance to tell some $cientologists who were hustling reprints of Hubbard's pulp work at the con what a blob of human garbage their messiah was.

Deadly Pleasures magazine editor/publisher George Easter awarded me the Don Sandstrom Award for my lifetime achievement in mystery fandom. I pretty much left mystery fandom six years ago, but I'm honored to have an award named for my late friend Don.

As always, apologies to those whose names I left off. As for the city, it was expensive and had more Koreans than Seoul. What really irked me was the street artists. I used to be one in the mid-'70s and there were definite rules and laws. We had to make our own goods, have them juried by the Arts Commission, and have a J license on display at our stands. The J license is so named after Proposition J, which allowed street artists. Hosebag Diane Feinstein opposed us, which is why I've always thought she should be slapped silly. Anyway, most of the people I saw on the streets selling had cheap imported garbage they no more made than I made the next moon rocket. No licenses, and none of the ones I asked about it, except one lady who did make her own goods, knew what a J license was.

Food was not bad, but like everything else it cost too much. I can say without reservation that the red snapper I had at Sinbad's, behind Pier 39, was excellent. The service wasn't so great, but the food was.

After the con I went to Sebastopol to visit a friend from my youth and his wife, who lived in a great house he built himself on 14 acres. Nice to wake up and see deer or coyotes on the property. We had a fine visit and I hope I can get back there again, though I don't know if that will be possible.

Enow. I look forward to this weekend. Laundry awaits.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

16 Days

Sweet Sixteen. I haven't posted my retirement countdown for a while, but today I calculated it to be sixteen more working days. I can't wait. The jerks, jackasses, and pinheads who run that organization ought to be marched into a field and hosed down.

The lovely lady in the photo is Donna Martell. I put her there to improve my mood.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Happy Birthday, Stephanie

I can't believe my first born turned 21 today. Happy birthday, baby, and many happy days ahead. She's also close to having a first born of her own. Wow.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Roy Rogers and the Scattered Legacy

When the Roy Rogers Museum closed its exhibits were sold at auction. Here are some of the prices realized.

Roy's 1964 Bonneville sold for $254,500, it was estimated to sell between 100 and 150 thousand dollars.

His script book from the January 14,1953 episode of This Is Your Life sold for $10,000 (est. $800-$1,000)

A collection of signed baseballs (Pete Rose, Duke Snyder and other greats) sold for $3,750

A collection of signed bats (Yogi Berra, Enos Slaughter, Bob Feller, and
others) sold for $2,750.

Trigger's saddle and bridle sold for $386,500 (est. 100-150K)

One of many of Roy's shirts sold for $16,250 and one of his many cowboy hats sold for $17,500.

One set of boot spurs sold for $10,625. Although he never used a set of
spurs on Trigger.

A life size shooting gallery sold for $27,500. This is really neat. You
should see it.

Various chandeliers sold from $6,875 to $20,000. Unique and artistic in their western style.

A signed photograph by Don Larsen taken during his perfect game in the World Series against the Dodgers on Oct.8, 1953, along with a signed baseball to Roy from Don, sold for $2,500

Two fabulous limited edition BB guns in their original boxes with numerous photos of Roy, Dale, Gabby, and Pat sold for $3,750.

A collection of memorabilia from his shows entertaining the troops in
Vietnam sold for $938. I never knew he was there. His flight jacket sold for $7,500.

His set of dinner ware plates and silverware sold for $11,875. The bible they used at the dinner table every night sold for $8,750.

One of several of his guitars sold for $27,500.

Nellybelle sold for $116,500.

A fabulous painting of Roy, Dale, Pat, Buttermilk, Trigger, and Bullet sold for $10,625.

One of several sets of movie posters sold for $18,750.

A black and white photograph of Gene Autry with a touching inscription from Gene to Roy sold for $17,500.

A Republic Productions Poster bearing many autographs of the people that played in Roy's movies sold for $11,875.

Dale's horse, Buttermilk (whose history is very interesting), sold below the pre-sale estimate for $25,000. (est. 30-40K)

Bullet sold for $35,000 (est. 10-15K). He was their real pet.

Dale's parade saddle, estimated to sell between 20-30K, sold for $104,500.

One of many pairs of Roy's boots sold for $21,250.

Trigger sold for $266,500.

Do you remember the 1938 movie The Adventures of Robin hood with Errol Flynn and Olivia de Havilland? Well Olivia rode Trigger in that movie. Trigger was bred on a farm co-owned by Bing Crosby. Roy bought Trigger on a time payment plan for $2,500. Roy and Trigger made 188 movies together. Trigger even outdid Bob Hope by winning an Oscar in the movie Son of Paleface in 1953.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Threshold of Geezerdom

Yesterday I applied for social security, or socialist insecurity as some call it. It was amazingly easy considering the government is involved. I did it on line in about 15 minutes. But Uncle Sam is infamous for screwing up my records so we'll see if this continues to go smoothly or if I'm headed for a great adventure.

What has this to do with John Lennon? Nothing. I believe yesterday was the anniversary of his birth and I wanted to acknowledge it.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Another Meme Project

From Rick Robinson's blog comes this meme. The answers are titles of books I've read this year (authors in parentheses).

I am: THE LAST DOG SOLDIER (Joseph A. West)

I will never be: FRISCO FILLY (Jon Sharpe)

I fear: GALLOWS (Bob Randisi)

My best friend is: THE PAINTED WOMEN (Chad Calhoun)

What’s the weather like? MURDER IN THE AIR (Bill Crider)

Best Advice: YOU NEVER KNOW WITH WOMEN (James Hadley Chase)

I’ve never been to: MYSTERY RANCH (Max Brand)

Favorite form of transport: DEAD MAN'S SADDLE (Jon Sharpe)

I’ll never fit in at: NEVADA (Burt Arthur)

How I’d like to die: NO NICE GIRL (Perry Lindsay)

You and your friends are: TROUBLE IN TOMBSTONE (Richard S. Wheeler)

Thought of the day: PARDON MY BODY (Dale Bogard)

Your soul’s present condition: TRIP HOME TO HELL (Jack Bickham)

Monday, October 04, 2010

Miscellaneous Garbage

The Mariners lost 101 games this year. Hey, Joe Torre, want a job?

I won $204 yesterday at the Muckleshoot Casino. $160 on one 25-cent bet at a slot machine. I gave each of my girls $100 and kept the rest.

I have somewhere between 25 and 27 work days left. I had a cold last week and had to kill two sick days, so my count is off and with what I'll accrue between now and the end of the year, it'll be tricky making my Adios date.

October is zipping along and I'm eager for it to be over. I especially look forward to Friday, which is my holiday for Columbus Day.

The image of Homicide Hostess has nothing to do with this post. I just like it.

Monday, September 27, 2010

George Blanda, RIP

I've just learned that George Blanda has died. I was lucky enough to be an Oakland Raiders fan in the early 1970s where Blanda was a backup quarterback and place kicker. Whenever he came on the field I was certain he would pull out a victory in the last seconds, and I was rarely wrong. He played pro football until he was a month shy of his 49th birthday, and had to be pulled from the team kicking and screaming even then. What a hell of a guy. You can see a clip about him HERE

Friday, September 24, 2010

Homage to Republic

I wrote a short essay about the only Republic serial I saw as a kid for Laurie Powers' excellent blog. You can find it HERE. If you haven't bookmarked Laurie's blog, do so. It's consistently excellent and interesting.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Countdown Interrupted

Goldurnit, I had to stay home today with the beginnings of a cold. I hated to burn the sick leave, but I'm hoping I might nip this before it becomes a real monster cold. I'll probably spend the weekend feeling miserable. Goldurnit.

I think this means I still have 29 days to go before retirement. Work days, that is.

My illo today shows Senator C. Estes Kefauver in a coonskin cap. Estes was famous for his committee's public inquiry into organized crime and he was from Tennessee, as was Davy Crockett.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

29 Days To Go

I hope my numbers are right in this Days To Go countdown. It seems to change depending on how I count them.

We're playing war games at work and the way things are going we might as well surrender and get it over with. Quel farce.

I need to get to bed early tonight. I'm reading Mississippi Vivian, by Bill Crider and Clive Wilson, as my bedtime book and it's keeping me up late. I was a zombie today. I'd like to be a bit more lively tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

30 Days To Go

Now we're talking. Thirty days hath September, Cap'n Bob, and November. "Thirty days, Jerry!" "When you're hot, you're hot." The big three-oh. Thirtysomething. That writes 30 to this story.

Random thought: I have no luck whatsoever with flashlights and lawn mowers. Every time I've owned one of these items they've either been pieces of junk from day one or, if they were good, died young. I still have a Walkman that functions fine, I had a truck for 15 years, but not a decent flashlight in the house. I have a lot of flashlights, but they all stink. Am I alone in this?

Friday, September 17, 2010

33, 32, 31 Days To Go

Sorry I missed the last two nights. I forgot on 33 and we had storms on 32 so I shut down the computer. It has been a quiet week anyway. I finished reading Bill Crider's MURDER IN THE AIR, his latest Sheriff Dan Rhodes mystery, and I think it's one of his best. I hope to do a real review this weekend if I find the time. I'm going to the Western Washington State Fair (The Puyallup) tomorrow and hope the rain holds off while I'm walking around. I saw some fair food prices in the paper tonight and it's shocking. A corn dog is $4.07. Bad enough they want four bucks, but the seven cents is the ultimate insult. A cheeseburger is close to ten bucks and be prepared to lay out $8.50+ for a bratwurst. Maybe I'll just snatch a chicken from the poultry exhibit and see if the guy demonstrating George Foreman Grills can cook it for me. I will get some scones for sure, though. They are the one must-have in the food department. The best part: I'm getting in for free.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

34 Days To Go, Adults Only Version

On this day in 1914 Clayton "The Lone Ranger" Moore was born. I wish he was still around. Still alive is Joey Heatherton, who is 66 today. She's probably the sexiest 66-year-old woman extant.

Friday, September 10, 2010

35 Days To Go

I hit the daily double--35 days left and it's Friday, the start of my three-day weekend. I like the number 35 but don't attach any special significance to it. I seem to recall a report years ago that said women reached their sexual peak at 35, but who knows if that's true. Okay, maybe some 35-year-old-women do. Any of them out there want to chime in?

The woman in the photo is Susan Hayward, an actress I've always admired.

Happy Birthday Aunt Peggy.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

36 Days To Go

36, now there's a number. Carol Doda, famous for her breast implants in the '70s, was spokes-airhead for a UHF station in the Bay Area, Channel 36. "The Perfect 36," she would coo during station breaks. The Battle of the Alamo occured in 1836, as did San Jacinto, which guaranteed Texas's freedom from Mexico. Japan invaded China in 1936. Three dozen is 36.

Happy Birthday to my kid sister Denise.

Happy anniversary to me and Linda, too. Twenty-one years.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

37 Days To Go

Today was a total bore. Ten hours at work and I did nothing. Oh wait, I did about 20 minutes' worth of work and 30 minutes of reading. Mingo finally showed up on an episode of Daniel Boone.

The year 1937, or '37 as I call it, heralded the first issue of Look magazine. H.P. Lovecraft died. The first science Fiction convention was held in Leeds, England.

I do want to wish Tough Jim Gaston luck with his operation. He's scheduled for an angioplasty today.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

38 Days To Go

I can't think of one thing about the number 38 that is significant. Jayne Mansfield's chest? No matter. I would like to take a moment to say happy birthday to my mother-in-law, Corinne, who is 93 today. That's almost two-and-a-half 38s.

Today I saw an old episode of Kojak and one of the punks was Michael Richards, better known as Kramer from Seinfeld. He was so young it was hard for some of my co-workers to recognize him, but the voice was unmistakable. I love watching old shows and seeing actors who hadn't made it big yet. Since we got our new break room I've also seen a number of episodes of Daniel Boone. In every one Ed Ames is shown in the opening credits but he hasn't been in any of the shows. I'll need to look that up.

I wrote a little essay about My West for Meridian West, Rich Prosch's otherwise fine blog. See it here

Thursday, September 02, 2010

39 Days To Go

Jack Benny was always 39. The year 1939 was probably the best in history for movie releases (Stagecoach, Gone With the Wind, The Wizard of Oz, etc). Germany invaded Poland in '39, initiating WWII.

Coming up for me is a 4-day weekend, so I won't count down another day until Tuesday.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

40 Days To Go

Now, 40 is a good number. Life begins at 40. Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves. Forty-four forty or fight. Forty winks. I'm sure you can come up with more. A nice round number.

I mentioned yesterday that I bought a bunch of books at Half-Price on Monday. Dave "Evan" Lewis wanted to know the titles. Here they are:

The Wild Bunch, Dane Coolidge

The Portable Mark Twain

The Troopers, Mike Jameson (probably have it already)

Ride the Red Trail, Lewis B. Patten

Carston's Law, Jim Miller (Ex-Rangers series)

The Pumpkin Rollers, The Raiders, Wagontongue, and Texas Vendetta, Elmer Kelton

Bowman's Kid, Gordon D. Shirreffs

Cimarron in the Cherokee Strip, Leo P. Kelley (Cimarron series)

The Hanging Trail, Seven Wagons West, Dead Man's Saddle, Six-Gun Sombreros, and Red River Revenge, Jon Sharpe (The Trailsman series)

You Can't Stop Me, Max Allan Collins

That ought to hold me for a while. That, and the thousands of others I own. Happy September.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

41 Days To Go

We entered WWII in '41 on a day that will live in infamy.

Yesterday I gave in to an urge and went to Half-Price Books, where I snagged 17 books at under $2.00 each. Later, I bought another half-dozen books on Amazon.

Before I left the house I washed my car for the first time in a year. Today it rained.

And the countdown continues...

Friday, August 27, 2010

42 Days To Go

I like the number 42. The Doolittle Raid and the Battle of Midway happened in '42. Summer of '42 was a pretty good movie. My younger baby was born when I was 42. I didn't want to rush into things, I guess.

Pictured is the classic shadow band The Moops. From let to right are yours truly, Dave "Evan" Lewis, and Brian Trainer (alias Tough Jim Gaston). Tough Jim is going to have some heart surgery in about 10 days and I want to wish him every kind of good fortune. He's a swell fellow and a magnificent guitarist.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

43 Days To Go

I really have nothing to say about the number 43, but this day is not without good tidings. James Reasoner, as fine and prolific a writer as ever beat a keyboard into submission, posted a review of my latest book, THE TOYMAN RIDES AGAIN, on his excellent blog. If I remember how to create links you'll find it here. Thanks, James, for your perspicacity.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

44 Days To Go

A pair of fours in poker is called Sailboats. I used to have a .44 magnum Ruger Blackhawk. There are 44 keys in half a piano keyboard. The days melt away, but not fast enough.

My older girl, Stephanie, who is gifting me with a granddaughter in November, had a checkup today. All is well, I'm relieved and happy to say.

Tune in tomorrow when I have even less to say.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

45 Day To Go

Just 45 working days left. I can liken the number 45 to 1845, the year the Mexican War started, and 1945, the year WWII ended and my older sister was born. I had a semi-productive weekend. Finally installed the molding on the new flooring (new several months ago) and took $30 from the Muckleshoot tribe at their large and clean casino.

I'm also tracking the Auburn, WA, team in the Little League World Series. After dropping their first game in the double-elimination format to Connecticutt 3-1, they came back to win two subsequent games and are still in the tournament. Auburn is just northeast of us and it's also where the Muckleshoot Casino stands. Seen how it all ties together?

Friday, August 20, 2010

46 Days To Go

On April 1 in '46 my cousin George was born. I don't have anything else to say about that number.

Our squardon picnic was held today. I went, I ate, I left.

Speaking of work, our new break room had the TV hooked up a few days ago and we now get a station called RTV (Retro Television). I've had a chance to watch episodes of I Spy and Daniel Boone. I missed Quincy, but it was there, along with Kojak. Today's I Spy guest starred Sue Randall, famous as Miss Landers on Leave It to Beaver. She looked a bit fuller in the face (filmed in 1965, three years after Randall left LITB), but she looked as lovely as ever. She also had a chance to emote more than she did as the wise and caring teacher. But you know what I liked best about these old shows?

Steady cameras that held a shot. No blitz cuts, no wobbly camera work, no brilliant lights flashing in my face--none of those damnable MTV effects every callow director finds necessary to inflict on us, and I doubt they even know why they're doing it.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

47 Days To Go

I'm sure I'll have trouble finding a tie-in to certain numbers, but 47 is a snap. The US Air Force, my employer, was born in 1947. So was I.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

48 Days To Go

There were 48 states when I was born, and there are 48 working days to go. Join the countdown as I watch a life of typical civil servitude come to an end. Today was unpleasant. I must have spent over 5 hours in a cramped K Loader cab of one kind or another, mostly waiting for people to get their butts in gear. At least I was smart enough to bring a book. On the up side, some reservists visiting from San Antonio had a burger burn to celebrate their departure, so I glommed onto free food.

You might have read about the sonic booms that hit our area yesterday. What happened was a float plane with a clueless pilot violated restricted air space in Seattle, causing two F-15 fighters stationed in Portland, OR, to scramble. I had just left the post office where I'd mailed my retirement papers when the noises hit. My first thought was the Army was firing some large cannons, but when my older daughter said it shook her house at a distance from the base I changed my mind.

As you know, the president flies around in Air Force One, even for non-essential, tax-money-wasting trips like the ones he's been on recently to prop up Democrats running for office. Did you also know that a second plane flies with him? Said backup craft sat outside my building yesterday until the POTUS finished his fraud, waste, and abuse campaigning, at which time it flew to wherever he was going next.