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Lifestyle Headache

My Bro wins the fight with a West TX buzztail.  Exemplary trigger protocol on an old school S&W 5906.

Well in to the summer down here in the puckerbrush even though the calendar says we are a coupla weeks shy;  several days already  over 100 with oppressive humidity.  That equals energy in the atmosphere and that means severe thunderstorms.  Had one blow through here a week or so ago from the northwest with 80mph wind, quarter size hail and an inch of rain in 15 minutes.

I don’t fret the storms blowin’ in from that direction because they hit the NO Princess Palace in the ass end which has little surface area to catch the wind.   Some folks in the area weren’t so lucky and suffered some damage.

Seems like the buzztails have been a bit more plentiful this year after a wet, warm winter.  I have killed 3 since Easter and before all the PETA folks get all up in my hair, here is how the cow eat the cabbage.  Western Diamondbacks are the most likely rattler down in these parts.  Average size of an adult is 4′ ( the pic from My Bro is a 4 footer with 11 rattles).  They are the most aggressive of all the rattlesnakes. My experience has been once you stumble into their space they coil up and stay coiled up and ready to strike.  The last one – a 2 footer- I killed actually advanced toward me after I missed my first strike with the snake stick. Those small ones are super nasty and bear close watching!!  Now, I do not go beatin’ the brush hunting buzztails but if one chooses to occupy the same space as me,  I kill it. Period. With my hearing loss,  I never hear them rattle so I rely on eyesight and Vela Von to alert me.  They are an enhanced threat because of my disability which I cannot change and must live with.   So I am going to kill them – all.  Not removing a threat to man or beast when opportune is foolishness that could get ya hurt.  Not on my watch.

Next-

****************

South Texas hail

Oil company security does a drive by through here once or twice a week and I enjoy talking to the various LEOs that are mooonlighting for some extra cash.  I always try to make sure Vela Von is on best behavior since dogs can be a sore subject on a gate.  A new fella showed up last week and VV was doing the place command on the wooden porch while watching us intently.  He commented on her behavior and went on to say he was a former Marine – 3 tours in Afghanistan and Iraq and then another tour as a contractor.  All tours were as a dog handler.

He asked me a hunnert questions about our training techniques and how she did in certain scenarios;  all the while looking at her.  I could tell he was a dog person and missed his relationship with a fine animal and at one point he shared some great pictures off his smartphone.   He gave me several tips to advance her training and improve how she responded to commands.  I reckon we spent an hour talking and it was mostly all him.  On the way out, I shook his hand and told him ‘thank you’  for spending that amount of time with us.

USMC file photo

Vela Von, Hound of the Puckerbrush,  has been training with her Tri-tronics/Garmin e-collar for a year now and still wears the collar daily. We try to advance and make progress each and every week.  She has most routine dog commands well in hand and responds to both spoken and hand signal instructions.  The latest advancement is for me to speak the commands in little more than a whisper. If she is beyond whisper range, I make a special sound which gets her attention and indicates instructions will follow. Then I give her a hand signal.  I realized a few weeks back that most people holler at a dog alot; me included. Gotta do something about that.

My security fella said he always trained his dogs to respond to Dutch commands and I guess plenty of folks use Dutch or German. Me; not so much.  It is no secret that the focus of our training has been for VV to be a security asset.  I am not training her to be a comfort dog or snuggle up with a baby child for a nap.  It is just me and a black dog in an inhospitable environment and I train her up accordingly.  Not to say she is overly aggressive but my dog – my rules.

After re-playing in my memory the conversation highlights with the former Marine, I decided to teach VV 3 German commands that would only be used in specific conditions of an elevated nature.  Two of them I am not going to discuss but the third one is Pfui! (foo-ey) said in a stern voice.  The dog handler definition for Pfui is ‘Stop that! Shame on you!’ .  In our world it means Damn dog! WTF were you thinking!  Get down on your belly RFN!!   Gotta say it is working out well because she learns quick.

 

****************

One of my regular blog reads this week mentioned they had to curtail an exploration and return to their RV because he got a bad headache and that made me pause. I cannot remember the last time I had a headache or indigestion. Funny; that.

Back in the shiny shoe days,  I started each workday at 0430 with two Xantacs.  On the commute, it was a liter of unleaded Pepsi and most likely some more Xantac.  Dammitall,  that is a sorry way to live.  It ain’t pretty being a debt hamster on that endless wheel.

BFF Cait and I were talking this week and I made the comment ‘What would you think if it was 5 years ago and somebody gave you a newspaper to read from today?’ The response was predictable because after all we are living in Crazy Town these days.  Each day seems to bring something new and different that I would have thought impossibly insane just a week prior. I can’t help but think of the Boiling Frog Parable.

Proof positive and close to home might be the fact that every time I choose to write about these perilous times, folks unsubscribe from the blog feed, rate the post badly on that star thingy at the bottom of every post or send me scathing emails.  Seldom do they post in the public comments. I can only guess they don’t want to hear my opinions; much less lend them a shred of credence.  Hey, it is a free country and while I do make an effort toward a quality post each week;  more than likely they are not going to be PC nor snowflake friendly.  Mostly because I have no fucks left to give.  If you can’t accept my viewpoint  even though you disagree,  I will happily refund you the cost of admission and tell ya to not let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.  Closed intolerant minds from any camp have never been welcome here.

The reason for this train of thought is the opportunity presented itself for me to get out of here for a couple of weeks after being 24/7 for 5 months without a day off.   I am getting my game plan together to take care of some things on time off that are not possible to do when I am tied down on the gate.  I realized this morning during the coffee drinkin’ portion of the Dog Romp that most of the things on the To-Do list involve elevating my level of self-sufficiency.

And why is that?  Why am I so focused on doing as much as I can to live by my own simple means?

The answer is pretty simple actually.  The increasing universality of a myriad of virtual reality fantasy schemas that are becoming horrifically normative coupled part and parcel with a life lived because >>social media<<  is transforming us into a nation that does not know how to do anything.  Maybe even more important is the millenials are perfectly alright and even mighty fine with this maximized ignorance of the Real World. But hey, we are doing it bigly; all the while reliant and oh so comfy with the premise and relentlessly hammered home belief the GOV will take care of us as long as we are good obedient hamsters.  So what if freedom is sacrificed in the process?  Drink the kool-aid Citizen!

I say this will not end well.

Finally,  My Grandfather who was my mentor and best friend passed away 31 years ago Saturday.  I feel his hand with mine on the rudder as I navigate life’s shoals even to this day and every day.

Crossing the Bar
By Alfred, Lord Tennyson

The two of us.   ca. 1957

Sunset and evening star,
And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
When I put out to sea,

But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
Turns again home.

Twilight and evening bell,
And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
When I embark;

For tho’ from out our bourne of Time and Place
The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
When I have crost the bar.

 

End Note: Take it Easy by The Eagles  from their self-titled debut album in 1972.

It was a song co-written by Glenn Frey and Jackson Browne and contained something of an unlikely geographical reference.

“Well, I’m a standing on a corner in Winslow, Arizona and such a fine sight to see,” Frey sang in The Eagles 1972 tune Take it Easy.

“It’s a girl, my Lord, in a flatbed Ford slowing down to take a look at me.”   More……….

Glenn Frey died in 2016.  Don Henley is 70 and still touring.

This is not a youtube video but it is a video if you follow the link. The sound reproduction and video quality is so incredible I felt obliged to include it.  Enjoy Take It Easy live from sometime in the late 70’s best I can figure.

The Eagles

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25 comments to Lifestyle Headache

  • Rob

    I went to Winslow just to see “Standing on the corner park”. I had breakfast & watched people (my age & older) stop & take pictures. Pictures with the statue, by the flatbed Ford & just the corner in general, then they got in their cars & left. There was a steady stream of people visiting while I lingered over breakfast, all of them older… white haired, retired looking people.
    I wondered what will happen to the park in 30 years when no one remembers why it’s there. Maybe it will take 50 years?

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  • Michael Barnett

    The only good rattlesnake is a dead one. And even then they can kill you!

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  • Bryan

    I say good riddance to the folks who can’t take a little reality once and again. I, for one, am really enjoying the evolution of your blog. Hopefully you can curtail the urge to post about lesbian squirrels.

    The world around us is becoming a bit surreal, seemingly more so with each passing day.

    I hope the land search is going well and you’ll soon find an inch or two of dirt to call you own.

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    • Andy

      Ha Bryan
      Did I catch a reference to the Adaptive Curmudgeon? I am looking forward to a sojourn at The Hideout. Vela Von needs to go in to be ‘fixed’. I have plans to cook a couple of hundred pounds of meat on the Church Smoker and fill two freezers. I am going to try my hand at sausage making and smoking and I have two new pieces of interesting equipment to shake out. Might make for good blog fodder. Who knows?

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    • Andy

      Interesting you should mention the evolution of the blog. I am VERY seriously considering moving away from myoldrv the first of the year because of life changes and a different direction. I have already registered a new domain name and if it becomes reality it will be much more circumspect to the point of being impossible to find and read unless you have the secret decoder ring.

      The only thing that could perhaps sway me is a increased and steadier income from the Amazon ads. A coupla hundred $$ in affiliate revenue from MyOldRV would be too hard to pass up. Sometimes it actually does boil down to being all about the money. Retirement will do me little good if the budget only allows beans and cornbread with no discretionary funding to build up the Refuge.

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  • Piper B

    Maybe readers don’t leave comments because the place for the comments is kind of hard to find – I can find it now because I look for it but at first I couldn’t find it until you told me where to go (not literally). Did you get any good suggestions about where to retire?

    Everyone who started the same time we did are quitting their gate guard gig. One couple was fired for being “too slow” – but what do you expect when you hire senior citizens to watch a gate in the middle of nowhere? Others complain about the extreme heat and constant dirt and dust and the inability to leave.

    Can I get a decoder ring for your new blog?

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    • Andy

      Hi Piper,
      The gate guard thing is not rocket science but the ‘nuances’ run you over like a Mack truck, huh?
      That is why I hammer in my blog about how inhospitable this environment is and the fact that it is a ‘job’- not something to just kill time in your retirement.

      “Can I get a decoder ring for your new blog?”

      Ciertamente!

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  • wallace

    I love the Eagles! Another favorite is “Peaceful Easy Feelin'” which I learned to play on the guitar many moons ago. Congrats to your brother for taking out a rattler with a sidearm — that’s some mighty fine shootin’ on his part. Self reliance is the ‘merican way, brother; you’re just carrying on an excellent tradition. Regarding VV: I have a soft place in my heart for GSDs — when I was a 4-yr-old, a large dog attacked me in my front yard; our GSD heard me & came to my rescue, taking out the attacker & saving me. A dog is the only creature on God’s green earth who loves you more than he loves himself.

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    • Andy

      Wallace
      You are right about the dogs and until I got Tuco the Dog I did not understand it. I came to the game late but now I am here to stay.

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  • Ken

    I bet you will get lotsa requests for decoder rings. I want one too. Yeah, rattlers need to be dealt with post haste. A snake stick, a hoe or shovel. Bowling equipment is also effective. Never had any of the above fail me. I have had lots of opportunities to practice in the past.

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    • Andy

      “I bet you will get lotsa requests for decoder rings. I want one too. “

      Top of the list Ken. I hope it don’t come to that.

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  • Terry

    Hey Andy I have always had a dog or two. You said you came late to the dog game now you know how it feel’s As you found out it to bad they have such short life span’s. Vela Von is looking good. Also put me on the list for a decoder ring.

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  • Linda

    Please sir, can I have a decoder ring?

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    • Andy

      I am hoping Amazon will pick up and I won’t have to do that Linda. If it comes to that you are on the list.

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  • Jim Bell

    I don’t know who it is that’s bothered by your posts but for all that’s right don’t change a thing. Your options are refreshing and your writing style is original!

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    • Andy

      I don’t think I set too well with the Good Baptists Jim, maybe the Methodists too.

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  • So I’m a westcoast libtard, but I do enjoy your point of view. It makes me think. As far as the buzztails go, kill them all! Anyway, I’d like to have a secret decoder ring for the new blog, as well.

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  • Paul Dahl

    Keep telling it like it is, Andy, without that PC brush that you find everywhere else. I look forward to reading your posts, they’re at the top of my must read list.

    I just need to know, how many box tops will it take to get my decoder ring? ;c)

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    • Andy

      Dang Paul
      You have been visiting here for more than a few years. I think you need a senior decoder ring.

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  • Nancy from South Georgia

    If someone doesn’t like your telling it “how the cow eat the cabbage” then they are a bit delusional. Who in their right mind doesn’t feel a hollowness when they think about the headlines? It’s just insane. I take breaks from the news and was offline when this latest atrocity occurred in London, England. And still there are the majority of people who aren’t affected by it. If it’s not happening to them, it ain’t happening.

    I used to be a tour guide in my high-crime city and was told NOT to “alarm the tourists” by telling them the truth about the crime rate. Another guide and I had a good laugh when discussing it…she said “But they don’t want to hear the truth; it will RUIN THEIR VACATION…” Like you’re going to be able to have a good vacation when there’s a 50% chance you’ll be robbed and maybe shot. Laughter because it beats crying.

    So there are people out there who don’t want to hear something that puts a negative spin on their day. Okay. I guess they need to follow the lives of Hollywood celebrities instead.

    I’m very glad I found this site….you’re a real person with really intelligent viewpoints. Please, sir, may I have a decoder ring?

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  • Can’t rightly say about Western Diamonbacks…but back in the day when I worked cruising timber in the SE for the paper company we ran into Eastern Diamondbacks, Timber Rattlers, Cottonmouths, and Pygmy rattlers mostly…coral and copperheads less so. We always found that the Pygmys were the most aggressive…we figured that they were so small they were pissy and the little bastards would bite you three or four times just for spite.

    Cruising timber requires walking a compass line through the woods as you likely know…otherwise the statistical evaluation of the timber’s worth doesn’t work right…and always wore leather chaps over our jeans because it wasn’t a question of if you would get bit, it was just a question of when since the compass like always, always goes through the brambles.

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  • Byron

    Some folks want to hear or read what they have been taught over the years and have been conditioned to not accept anything different. Some believe the government will take care of them. Some on the other hand are open minded and can still weigh both sides of the story. Unfortunately, the Television and a good portion of society keeps repeating unsupported information and if it is heard over and over agin, the story becomes believable and grows as perception. And you know perception can become reality really quickly. Just the way it is! I still have hope we can dig out of this sad situation but we are in perilous times my friend. Not sure any of us will ever really know the whole truth. I do know I enjoy reading your perspectives and will continue to as long as you provide them. Thank you for sharing.

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  • Vince Emery

    Morning Andy,
    Check in to read your blog every week. Good common sense and much information shared by a person with experience on the subject. Appreciated. Don’t use your Amazon acct. because my wife has one so ya know how that goes. I’d like to keep up with you so a secret decoder ring is on my Christmas list.

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  • Andy

    I am going to revive this blog entry for those that subscribed to the comments — you will get this.

    Check out Overton Window – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overton_window. We ARE being coerced, dumbed down and spoon fed what we want to hear — WHAT WE WANT TO HEAR!!

    If you are a middle class frog and the water is starting to get steamy — get out of the pot NOW! The opportunity is not going to last much longer.

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