Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Vehicular Madness

A while back my car started malfunctioning in an odd way. If it wasn't run every day, the battery would go dead. Didn't seem like such a big deal a brand new battery met the same fate.

It's been sitting, and I've been driving other things, but I finally got it into the mechanic and got him to poke around and discover the problem. Which was actually fairly easy to discover, considering.

See, I had figured there had to be a short somewhere draining the battery. I just had no idea how to go about finding it. Thus my need for a mechanic. Who, first thing hooked the battery up to a trickle charger for a few hours, then flipped it over to boost to try and start the car.

Of course being concerned about an electrical malfunction and a possible battery malfunction he checked the battery for heat as the boost kicked in, so he was under the hood and not inside the car when smoke began rolling from my dash.

It seems that my eight year old (give or take) stereo had decided to give up the ghost, by shorting out and drawing charge off the battery. Today, it decided to commit suicide by catching on fire.

Frankly with the amount of dust and dirt that must have made it's way into that thing I'm amazed it hadn't blown up earlier.

Luckily the mechanic was quick thinking and jerked the cables, and then dismantled the dash to see what exactly had caught on fire.

Hopefully re-installing the factory stereo (which doesn't have a CD player, but I'll survive without that for a while) will solve the short, which appeared to come from inside the stereo itself. Mechanic will be going over everything once the new battery is installed (I got it at El Marto Del Wal, it's got three year free replacement, they can give me a damn new battery) just to make sure there's not another incident, but he figures the culprit was the stereo.

So, possibly as soon as tomorrow afternoon I'll have my car back, yay!

And hopefully nothing else catches on fire.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

"If I Have To..."

Ya'll know I don't do politics, but tonight I heard something that I just thought I'd share, to show, in general, how the people around here are feeling.

Tonight we had a visit from one of my favorite older farmers. I've known him, well, forever, and he's a man who's opinion I respect.

He's a level headed man, very much you do your thing and I'll do mine, always willing to help a neighbor. The things he believes in though, he'll stand up for.

The talk came around to politics, as it will, and discussing things like Obamacare, and the Tea Party protests...

At one point this man, who has children, and grandchildren, has survived cancer and open heart surgery and joy and loss and a lifetime of work, raised his chin, looked me right in the eye and said "If I have to, to protect my kids and grandkids from living in a socialist regime, I will bear arms, I will go out and fight for my rights and my freedoms. I hope it doesn't come to that, but I'm afraid it will."

The current administration is alienating the very people that this country depends on. I think they'd be wise to keep that in mind in the future, though I doubt they will.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


It's been hectic around here, as usual, and not as inspiring as it could be, and this blog has suffered because of it.

Today, it's raining. We were planning on working cattle today and then looked at the weather and decided to put it off until tomorrow, so I'm using the time to catch up on some housework. Dishes and laundry, yay!... or not.

Progress is being made on my house, and we're reaching the stage where it's going to be more visible all the time, which makes me feel a lot better. The whole fam will be working on different projects over the next little bit, me on the last room of demo (yay, destroying stuff!) Farmmom on the electric and Farmdad on re-framing the wall between the kitchen and bathroom. After that stuff gets done I have a sneaking suspicion I'll be crawling around underneath the house doing plumbing.

I don't believe I've mentioned it here before but a while back Farmmom tore up her knee, requiring surgery. She's doing much better now, but is alternately praising and cursing her physical therapist, which seems to be the way it should be, to me. She comes out of her sessions in a good mood, but he gives her enough of a workout to have her muscles feeling all weak and wobbly afterwords.

He says that Determination is definitely not her problem. I was kind of hurt when I heard that, whenever I act like that they call it "stubborn." Not quite fair, is it?

Sunday, September 6, 2009


I have a confession to make.

I am addicted to Tamora Pierce's books. I know, I know, they're "teen" books, but I fell in love with her writing and her characters years ago and I always want to know what great adventures they'll get up to next.

I've been waiting for Beka Cooper's next tale since I read the first one. She has to be one of my favorite characters from Pierce, along with Daine of course.

Since I've been busy with other things and had figured that Pierce was working on other series along with Beka's tale, I hadn't poked around to find out what was taking so long for the new book. So, the author's note in the back of Bloodhound was the first I'd heard of the brilliant lady's accident and recovery.

I feel kinda bad now for grumbling every time I was in a book store and didn't see the next installment.

Regardless, Bloodhound lives up to the wonderful tale-spinning standard I've come to expect from all of Pierce's books.

Highly recommended.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Words of Advice

Went out dancing with K and a few other friends last night, and it brought home to me that the young men of this world need some advice when it comes to the dance floor.

So, if any of them happen to read this blog, here's a few clues.

Keep your erection to yourself. It's not so much that we're bothered by the fact that we excite you, we actually tend to take that as a compliment. However, we do not want to have the evidence of that excitement rubbed against us on the dance floor, or if we do, we will initiate it. Really. Take a couple of deep breaths and think about dead puppies or something.

An accidental bump is one thing. Pursuing her as she attempts to politely ease away is rude, and kind of creepy. In these situations I usually advise my shyer female friends (the ones that won't dress the offender down verbally) that a quick hip-check to the offending area usually solves the problem one way or another, and offers an object lesson in manners at the same time, without being overt enough to draw too much unwanted attention.

When a young lady is on the dance floor with her girl friends, regardless of how she's shaking it, it is not an open invitation to grab, rub up against, or otherwise have physical contact with her. If you would like to dance with her, join the group politely, if she wants that kind of action, she'll get all up on you. If not, you get to dance with a bunch of girls, and enjoy the views, be happy with that.

Do not touch any posteriors not your own or those of girlfriends or close friends that you're on those kinds of terms with already. Believe me, grabbing some random girl's ass on the dance floor will not make her want to go home with you, and if you grab the wrong ass, you might just get your butt kicked by a girl.

I had to offer to remove a hand last night because one young man decided that he needed to slap my behind while we each were dancing with different people. I think the sweet smile I gave him after I told him the next time that hand touched me I was keeping it worried him a bit.

If a girl is dancing only with her girl friends and the guy she came with, and he is not her boyfriend, that means she's shy. She may well accept an invitation to dance, and will enjoy the dance, as long as you keep your hands to yourself or in their designated areas, depending on the type of dance. If it's booty-shaking hip-hoppy type stuff, and you put a hand on her waist and she moves away, then keep your hands to yourself. If you're two-stepping, remember that the lower back does not include anything south of the waistband.

Also, if she's a bit touch-shy, give her some space. Young ladies who are not accustomed to the two-step may take that body-close hold as something entirely other than the best way to keep from stepping on each others feet or running into other dancers. A couple of inches should suffice, but if she's leaning back give her more room.

Manners are just as important on the dance floor as anywhere else in life, and a gentleman who approaches a lady and asks her politely for a dance scores way more points than a guy who just jumps in.

My favorite words to hear when I'm out dancing are "would you care to dance?" or even better, "may I have this dance?" (Note: extra points if you extend a hand to help her out of her chair. It's not that we need the help, it's just the gentlemanly thing to do.)

Unless I'm dead tired, or leaving, I will accept any polite invitation to dance, and most of the girls I know are the same way.

Keep these small reminders in mind and you'll do well on the dance floor, and certainly get to dance with more ladies than the young men who fail to follow these simple guidelines.