Friday, December 25, 2015

The Green Green Grass of Home.

Just a quick note to wish everyone out there in Blog Land a very Merry Christmas.

We're having some "record breaking warmth" here at the Ponderosa, and I'm not just talking about the gathering of twenty-two of us for dinner last night.


Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Bionic FLy.

Sounds like the title to a science fiction short story by Ray Bradbury.  But no,  it was just a fly, but I swear those things are beyond normal.  It was one of them big suckers.

How can you stay aloft that long and fly that fast?  And what are you doing in the house at this time of year?

And you know, my visual acuity ain’t much to rave about these days, so I’m not quite the “dead eye” I used to be with the fly swatter.

Man, that’s annoying.

No pictures of the fly by the way.  He’s slightly mangled.  It took some doing though.  Had to trap him (her? it?) in the office, close the door behind me so he couldn’t escape, and then try not to flail about too much with the fly swatter and possibly hurt myself.
There’s usually a way that I can hurt myself, but let’s not go there.

Anyhoodle.  In other “news”,  Travelling Companion and I did get to experience the most intense pine scented air freshener that I've ever had in the car with us.  Well, I've never had one of those “Pine Scented Air Fresheners” so it wasn't much of a contest actually.

Yes,  that’s our Christmas tree.  And yes,  it’s in the car.

And man!  Did that thing smell great!

No really!

It’s been a few years since we’ve gone out to cut down a tree,  mostly as; 1) The kids are long since grown up, and; 2) It got to be that the choice of trees was getting really bad. 
Like,  we’d be there for way too long, wandering from one sad looking thing to the next.  All the while,  cold and miserable.
So ultimately, I just figured it wasn’t worth the effort,  and would simply snag one from in front of one of the local retailers.
I mean, I paid for it and all.
I can’t run that fast.
Certainly not with a tree under my arm.

Photographic proof.

I was particularly pleased with myself, having remembered to bring along a piece of closed celled foam to kneel on. 

I ain’t no fool, that ground was cold and wet. 

There were nine of us altogether,  with only one token child.

One of the other “children” (also really an adult away at University) was getting a glimpse of the tree that was going to be at her home when she got back there.  The “kids” are all mostly finishing up their exams and coming home to roost.

“How about this one?”

Such is the internet age.

The tree’s not up yet, but that’ll likely happen before the end of the week.  Today was “cleaning lady” day,  so we figured we’d wait just one more day.

Once upon a time,  we’d only put the thing up on Christmas Eve, and take it down and punt it out after January sixth.  The Twelve Days of Christmas,  in case you’re wondering.
I think that all changed when we were home “for the Holidays” from out little side life in Puerto Rico,  and knew that we’d be taking it down on the 27th,  since we were all flying back to San Juan for New Years. 

Talk about mixed feelings.  On the one hand,  throwing out a perfectly good Christmas tree, but then on the other hand, “we’re heading back South! Yee-Haw!”  
These days,  I’d just as soon stay home.  Until of course,  about the dead of winter when it’s really rather bleak out.  But of course,  you may recall the plans we made for February.  It’s just simmering there in the back of my mind.

Not particularly looking forward to the flying part.  But those mai tais are awesome.  Never knew I liked them that much. 
Mind you,  the way the Loonie is dropping,  I’ll need to be drunk most of the time I’m thinking.
Again,  let’s not go there.

Oh and by the way,  I just discovered what many of you have come across in the last little while.

 "Live Writer" no longer talks to "Google".  Or something like that.  And that sucks.  Someone always comes along and decides to F**k something up.
Just my opinion on "progress".  Or maybe it's more like "greed".  Whatever. It sucks.

So I've been very painstakingly copying and pasting everything from Live Writer over here.  PITA.

Thanks for stopping by.


Monday, December 7, 2015

Watching in hi def.

And this isn’t a “ooh,  lookie what I got” post,  so much as a “sometimes I wonder” type of post.

Like,  sometimes I wonder if I’m a complete idiot.

I went on a while back about a TV that I bought, (my anniversary present, thank-you) and then the stand/support thingy that I built to hold it.  You might have noticed that I didn’t have too danged much to say after that?

Well,  that’s because I was somewhat disappointed with the picture.  Of course,  the “Home Theatre” system that I have down there is getting quite long in the tooth,  so it wasn’t really any means by which I was able to judge picture quality, and it wasn’t until I hooked up a Blue Ray player,  and it started playing a disc that was already in there, that I did one of those “deer in the headlight” moments when I saw the picture the way it should be. 

I have to say, pretty freakin’ awesome.

Then I figured there must be something wrong with my cable hook-up,  and was all set to run a new, higher quality run of cable to the digi-box.  Because the signal I was getting from our cable provider was dreadful.

Or so I thought.

Turns out,  I just needed to go hunting for the “High Def” channels.   Nothing wrong with the cable.



And no,  I don’t watch day time TV.  I had taken another photo during one of last nights games,  and it wasn’t what I had hoped for.  (it sucked)

Of course,  one of the games that I wanted to watch (Buffalo vs Houston) was on one of the regular channels, (go figure) but me watching the game doesn’t change the outcome.  

So here I’ve been watching this set for a few weeks by now, mostly on Sundays (NFL football, hello)  all the while thinking, “Man that picture sucks.” 


Just shaking my head here. 

At least I didn’t throw something at it.  But I did actually entertain thoughts of sending the thing back.  I mean, I went back over all the reviews of that particular TV set,  and there had been some that were less than stellar. AND, these weren’t the reviews I had found when I was doing my research.

I figured I had been duped.  

Not duped.  Just a dope.


So it’s all good.

Son-in-law even gave me an early Christmas present in the form of a little do jiggy that allows me to watch Netflix,  even though it isn’t a “smart” TV.   Sometimes the difference you pay in price for a smart TV is far more than what it would cost to simply add a device such as this set top TV box.  Not sure what else to call it.  There’s a bunch of them out there. Works nice.  It’s “android”,  so I may end up getting a little remote thingy,  or add an app to my tablet to make it easier to navigate.  No big deal.

Meanwhile,  Travelling Companion and I have to go out at some point and pick up some grout for the fireplace hearth.  I *think* we’ve decided on a colour,  but I never act unilaterally when it comes to these types of decisions.  We picked out the slate together,  and it’ll be the same for the grout. 

I might be a dope,  but I ain’t that dumb.




You can see my really “high tech” method of holding tiles in place until the mortar sets up.  Strips of wood and masking tape.  Seems to work.

I want to have this wrapped up before Christmas, (is that a pun?)  since “company’s coming”, and I just want one more thing off my plate.  I have to manufacture some trim that will go around it,  and then that’ll be it.

And now of course, I’ve been eyeing the firebox downstairs.  

That’s a whole other kettle of fish.  I might put in a wood burning stove/insert/thingy.  It’s presently a perfectly functional wood burning fireplace, but I’d really like to have something that’s more efficient. 

Time will tell.

Good thing I don’t mind doing this kind of stuff,  even though it sometimes (sometimes?) seems to take me forever.  I think if I had deadlines it wouldn’t be nearly as much fun. 

Well,  that’s a loose definition of fun.


Thanks for stopping by.


Keep it between the ditches.