The world smiles in flowers. AL BATT/BLUFF COUNTRY READER
The world smiles in flowers. AL BATT/BLUFF COUNTRY READER
I sat in a busy waiting room. A TV played to either calm or aggravate the seated. It was showing what must have been some kind of home improvement show. A couple of people were painting the walls of a room. It was the opposite of riveting. I have often heard the expression "like watching paint dry" to describe an excruciatingly boring experience. Perhaps that was the name of the program.
I shouldn’t complain about TVs in waiting rooms. They are better than me being a wolverine’s dentist.
Back to painting a wall. In those dark ages before cellphones, officially know as the Quiet Era, my wife sent me to a paint store to get, hard to believe, paint.
I’m not colorblind. I’ve passed all the tests. I can tell the basic colors. I’m good through the 16-count box of Crayola Crayons. Those colors are black, blue, brown, green, orange, red, violet, yellow, blue-green, blue-violet, carnation pink, red-orange, red-violet, white, yellow-green and yellow-orange. The identification of all the colors in the 48-count box would cause me some difficulties. Wisteria, cerise, manatee and fuchsia?
Paints are even worse. Chartreuse? Mauve?
There is a Crayon called "Mauvelous."
I want to say, "Gesundheit" whenever someone mentions the color ecru.
In the paint store, I was surrounded by so many colors of paint, for an instant, I knew how Custer must have felt.
Echoes from Loafers’ Club
What was your mother’s maiden name?
I don’t know.
How can you not know what your mother’s maiden name was?
I didn’t know her before she was married.
Driving by the Bruces
I have two wonderful neighbors — both named Bruce — who live across the road from each other. Whenever I pass their driveways, thoughts occur to me, such as: life would be easier if perfect lawns were made of weeds.
I’ve learned
No one looks good while trying on a pair of new sunglasses with those retail tags hanging from them.
Many men aren’t aware there is a crumb tray in a toaster.
"Old MacDonald Had a Farm" is based on a true story.
The news from Hartland
New pirate movie is rated ARRRRRR!
Bowling Elaine’s offers a new league. It’s bowling with dodgeball rules.
Local cable company changes the channel number for the Discovery Channel each day.
Denton Fender was ticketed for running a stop sign. He went to court and pleaded not guilty on the grounds that he doesn’t read sign language.
Cafe chronicles
I liked the cafe right off. It was where 1975 had gone. It was a place where everything comes to him who orders the hash.
The waitress told me she was getting older, but her eyes were still blue and only one of them was lazy.
Chowhounds were busy and content. Stomachs were still smaller than eyes, but they were just as happy.
Euphoria filled the cafe, except for one guy who inspected his food as if it were a prison delivery. He looked like he was going to eat, but never did.
He complained that he had his good days. This just wasn’t one of them. He moaned about the selections offered, grumbling that a menu is like a church potluck supper — only as strong as its weakest link.
I spoke in Washington, D.C. I did as much sightseeing as possible while there, took in a couple of seminars and listened to a senator give a stirring speech about the obligations of an individual who lives in this wonderful country.
A man seated near me began to cry. I asked him if he was a resident of the senator’s state.
“No,” he said, “But I am a taxpayer.”
Did you know?
Tim Hortons has more customer traffic than the next 15 fast-food chains in Canada combined.
Bob McDonald coached Minnesota high school basketball for 59 years without getting a single technical foul.
Data on 756,848 pitches over 313,774 at-bats in 4,914 Major League Baseball games found that, on average, umpires called a strike on 18.8 percent of pitches that were out of the strike zone and a ball on 12.9 percent of pitches that were strikes.
Nature notes
"What bird is the state bird of the most states?"
The northern cardinal is the state bird of seven states and the western meadowlark is the state bird of six.
While in New Ulm, I tuned the car’s radio to a local station, KNUJ. I was hoping to find a baseball game, but was surprised to not hear any old time music. I know the station doesn’t play much of that genre any more, but KNUJ was once "The Polka Station of the Nation"
I was driving past Vogel Arena, a recreation facility. I had recently been working in Germany and did a lot of birding while there. One day, I was wearing a T-shirt with a picture of a bird on it. A German approached me and introduced himself. His last name was Vogel, meaning "bird." We talked of sauerbraten, spaetzle, schnitzel and strudel.
This combination of thoughts pulled the curtain back on a movie I had watched. It was titled, "Memorial Day" and starred James Cromwell as Bud Vogel, a grandfather whose old World War II soldier’s footlocker was filled with more stories than objects.
Vogel enjoyed drinking lemonade while sitting on the porch of his house. From that perch, he listened to the birds and identified them by their songs. In one scene, Vogel asked his grandson, who would later become a soldier, "You know why I like birds so much? They don’t just talk the stories, they sing them."
Nature lessons
John Christiansen, the first settler of New Salem, N.D., was breaking the virgin prairie with a plow in 1883. A couple of Sioux watched him intently. One turned over a piece of newly broken sod so that the grass was again on top. He pointed at the plowed ground and told Christiansen, "Wrong side up."
The lovely Luna moth doesn’t have a mouth. It cannot eat and lives about one week, with the singular purpose of mating.
Bogor, Indonesia, averages over 300 days of thunderstorms each year.
Ticks are arachnids like scorpions, spiders and mites. Arachnids have four pairs of legs as adults and no antennae. Adult insects have three pairs of legs and one pair of antennae.
Meeting adjourned
"This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness." — Dalai Lama
Thanks for stopping by
"My favorite weather is bird-chirping weather." — Loire Hartwould
"Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value." — Albert Einstein
© Al Batt 2014