19 December 2010

NFL Picks 19-20 Dec

My picks for the weekend.

Date & Time
Favorite
Underdog

12/19 1:00 ET
St. Louis -3

Kansas City

12/19 1:00 ET
Tennessee


Houston  +1.5

12/19 1:00 ET
Indianapolis

Jacksonville +4.5

12/19 1:00 ET
Carolina

Arizona +2.5

12/19 1:00 ET
Cincinnati -1

Cleveland

12/19 1:00 ET
Miami -5

Buffalo

12/19 1:00 ET
NY Giants -3

Philadelphia

12/19 1:00 ET
Dallas -7

Washington

12/19 1:00 ET
Tampa Bay -4.5

Detroit

12/19 1:00 ET
Baltimore

New Orleans +2.5

12/19 4:05 ET
Atlanta -6

At Seattle

12/19 4:15 ET
Pittsburgh -4.5

NY Jets

12/19 4:15 ET
Oakland -7.5

Denver

12/19 8:20 ET
New England -14

Green Bay

Monday Night Football Line





12/20 8:35 ET
Chicago -7.5

At Minnesota

     Over/Under is 33 ... I pick under                                                                                                          

13 December 2010

I celebrated my birthday by buying an all terrain 4 wheeler.
Here is a picture of me playing with it in the back yard.

12 December 2010

Sunday Morning

The Minnesota Vikings dome roof has collapsed and they cannot play football there. Do you think that God is trying to extend Bret Favre's starting streak?

0300 Hours Sunday Morn

Middle of the night, couldn't sleep. Here are my picks for 12/12 and 12/13

    Favorite                          Line           Underdog     

    Jacksonville                   -3.5          Oakland    
    Pittsburgh                      -8.5          Cincinnati    
    New England                 -3             Chicago    
    Buffalo                             0             Cleveland
    NY Giants                       -3             Minnesota    
    Green Bay                      -6.5         Detroit    
    Atlanta                            -7.5          Carolina    
    Tampa Bay                    -1              Washington
    New Orleans                -9              St. Louis    
    San Francisco             -5               Seattle    
    NY Jets                         -5.5           Miami    
    Denver                         -4              Arizona    
    San Diego                   -9.5           Kansas City    
    Philadelphia              -3.5           Dallas    

Monday Night Football Line
    NY Giants              -3                  Minnesota    
    Baltimore              -3                  Houston         46  [
Pick the "under"]

I do not know what has happened to my sleep patterns. I sleep a few hours and then I am up and unable to go back to sleep. then about daylight I get sleepy as hell. Old age? Living a Bad Life?
Have a good day.

06 December 2010

1st 'FULL' week of December

   Well, the old fat man is finishing all the toys in preparation for his around the world journey three weeks from tonight. Christmas decorations are up around the apartment complex and my Bah-Humbug T-shirt is ready for wear. We won't be having much, if anything, but we'll be helping others who are less fortunate (with our time and efforts). There are the Christmas baskets for the poor to fill and distribute for the Legion, the Legion Christmas Party at the Post home for all the kids, etc. It'll make us feel better and it'll help others ... what more is there? Tis' the season.
   Hilda's arm is still paining her a lot and she is still unable to do for herself. I have to dress her, bathe her and pretty much do most of the things she needs done. It is frustrating for her, she cannot wait until it heals.
   I hope that you all are getting in the season and will be surrounded by friends and family.

December 6

    One of my photos is on HappySnappy (see "Other Blogs You'll Like" on the left of this page) as a guest picture blogger under the theme "Light" ... thanks to Kia and Jaana.
   My NFL picks (as of the last 2-3 weeks have been atrocious.  I went 7-7 yesterday ... point spreads killed me, I lost one game by 1/2 point and one game by 2 1/2 points. I picked the winners in both games, but in one I had to give 4 1/2 and they won by 4 and the other I had to give 6 1/2 and they won by 4. Arr-r-r-rgh !! I am now 74-52 or 59% (below 60%, how bad is that?) going into tonight's Jets-Patriots game. Come on Jets !! Make me a winning week.

04 December 2010

1st Weekend in December

      Saturday morning, not much going on around Ranchito de Poeta Baracho. I've been up since about 0300, I had to get up to get Hilda's sugar up a little. She was at 40, which is low. When I am up for longer than a few minutes, it's hard for me to get back to sleep. The past week or so, she has had trouble with her low sugars again. I don't know if it is the pain in her arm or her pain medication that is causing it. But ... I am back to the old days, waking up a couple of times a night to check on her. I am hoping that her pain starts to subside some pretty quick, as she gets really grumpy about not being able to do stuff for herself ... like bathe, get dressed, eat properly (she's not real good with her left hand), and other things.
    I've been on the keyboard for an hour or so ... discussing (arguing) some points with a former Morman/now Atheist friend of mine. I've also read all my Saturday comics and the news (online of course). I've had several discussions with others this AM also ... some friendly, some political and others just gossip. I did have a little problem explaining to one gal that the United States is a federal constitutional republic and not a democracy. She checked it out and apologized. Fat Boy 1  Skinny Bitch 0 !!
     I have a REALLY interesting and informative You-tube thing that you NEED to view. 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlfEdJNn15E There were some facts in it that even a know-it-all like me found new and interesting. Check it out when you get time.
     I have RadioFreeTexas on the computer and am enjoying some good tunes from the GetoCowboys, Pine Valley Cosmonauts, Billy Joe Shavers, et al. Nice background music to the pre-dawn hours. I love music.
    I have been working on my November Financial Report for the Legion. We had some computer problems there that have not been completely resolved and so it's been difficult. I have to go there about 0800 to get a few more facts straight and then Sunday morning/Monday morning, I'll do the Kitchen report. Monday night I'll work Sirloin Burger Night. Tuesday morning, the Commander and I have to move some records and stuff there and then a Finance Committee / E-Board meeting Tuesday evening. busy few days.
   I am hoping that I can get Hilda to go to the Legion for an hour or so today. We visited with her mom the other day and it was nice for her to get out of the house.
  I am hoping that my NFL picks improve this week, I am now at 60% [so here they are:
Bills + 5.5          at the Vikings     ... Vikings cover
Browns +5        at Miami                ... Miami covers
Jaguars +3        at Tennessee       ... Jaguars in an upset
Broncos +8.5   at the Chiefs        ... Denver + the points (too many)
Redskins +7     at the Giants        ... Giants cover (come on Eli)
Chicago -4.5    at the Lions           ... Chicago wins
49er's +9.5       at the Packers      ... Packers (but that's a lot of points)
Saints -6.5        at the Bengals      ... Saints should cover here
Falcons -3         at Tampa Bay       ... Falcons should cover easily
Raiders +13     at the Chargers    ... Chargers (but, again, a LOT of points)
Carolina +5     at Seattle                 ... Toss-up, but I'll go with the Panthers
Dallas +5.5      at the Colts             ... a really hard one, but I'll go Colts (probably a field goal difference)
Rams -3.5        at Arizona               ... Rams, I can't believe Arizona can beat anyone
Steelers +3      at the Ravens        ... Another toss-up, with Big Ben's foot, I'll go Ravens

Monday Night: Jets +3.5   at the Patriots ... I like the Jets in an upset

   You all know how much I like taking pictures. Well I like other people's also. The following photographs are from electrician Sean Heavey. They are of a weather phenomenon known as a supercell. This occurred in Glasgow Montana, where Sean was working.


29 November 2010

Random thoughts at 3 AM

   Another middle of the night and I am awake. Been a lot of this lately. I sleep about 4 1/2 to 5 hours and then I am awake. Cannot get back to sleep, then about daylight, when I should be getting up ... I get sleepy. I do not know what caused this drastic change in sleep rhythms. It is disconcerting to say the least. 
   I have not often thought of myself as a member of the clerisy, what with my seemingly constant hebetude. But the more that I am around people these days with their obvious nescience about so many topics, the more I am inclined to believe that I may belong. People tend to amaze me more and more with their thoughts and actions.
   I have spent the last 5-6 days at home with Hilda as she can do little for herself as yet and that has brought on a period of laziness that I must overcome. Coupled with our obvious lack of money ... her unemployment has stopped because the Federal side of the equation has not been extended ... boredom is starting to set in.
   My NFL picks the last few weeks have been abysmal ... I have been tossed from my once glorious perch by point spreads and bad play by good teams. I went 7-9 this week. that drops me to 67-45 or 60% ... I was above 80% at one time. Not thinking and/or planning enough I guess.
   Our weather here has not been to my liking of late ... have to wear a jacket and a long sleeve shirt. I'm a shorts and polo shirt kind of a guy you know.
    I have been actively looking for work, but nothing yet. For every position out there, there are dozens of applicants. And ... most of them are younger than 65.
 


27 November 2010

Saturday

 Well, I went on the other day about the things that I was thankful for. Today, I am back to normal, not understanding the world or my fellow humans. Some things really irritate me ... and they shouldn't realistically. I am not well educated, tout de même I am not dumb. Here I sit in the pre-dawn hours, reading and attempting to keep up with happenings locally and in the world at large. I mean ... important, earth-shaking things. LOL ! I mean who doesn't worry that B.H.O., the world's most articulate human and leader (?) of the free world got stitches because of an errant elbow in a basketball game or that 77 year old Willie Nelson got caught with 6 ounces of pot (again) or that Wesley Snipes or Lindsey Lohan may actually get jail time. These are events that shall go down in history ... or not. Sometimes I think that I should give up on the news as it is. But, where was I? Oh yeah, things that irritate me.

Item #1: I cannot, for the life of me, understand why people use YOUR when they mean YOU'RE. I have seen it on all sorts of announcements, both hand printed and computer generated ... "YOUR invited" / "YOUR welcome" ... and no one seems to notice or to care. Well, now I have even seen it in the newspaper ... in our very liberal Arizona Daily (Red) Star. And it was not just lapsus linguae, it appeared once in the news and once on the sports page. These are college educated writers and they have editors. This is not the only language malfunction extant but it is one of the most common. If a redneck hillbilly like me can see the difference, then what is the problem? Are the apostrophe and the E just too much trouble to add? Enough though.

Item #2: Drivers who are distracted or brought to incompetence by their inability to NOT BE ON THE PHONE! I cannot believe that all these conversations are THAT important. People do not talk about important things on their cell phones normally ... they just talk because they have a cell phone and it is a way to keep busy. I saw a car yesterday with three people in it ... all of whom were on their cellphones. Maybe they were talking to each other? Or maybe they didn't like each other? No one under the age of 50 seems to have face-to-face conversations anymore. They text and twitter and whatever that new thing is, all in a code that passes for language these days. OMG,LOL, Gr8, ad nauseam.
    An observation - I have to say that there are very few people that I know or see who have the ability to "Do Nothing". That is a great sorrow to me. Everyone should, at one time or another (I do it regularly) ... just sit/stand/lean and "Do Nothing". I sit on our little porch for a half hour and don't do anything ... it revitalizes the juices and rests our little grey cells (as Hercule Poirot calls them). But folks in this day and time have to stay busy every waking moment, not with anything important, just busy.

Item #3: While we are on the subject of driving / drivers ... my favorite peeve ... are people ignorant of laws and/or common courtesy or just ignorant? They make right hand turns from the left lane and/or left hand turns from the right lane. They cut over three lanes ... a mere 5 car lengths from the intersection. Did they just remember where they were going? Did they just wake up? Or did that person on the phone tell them ... "TURN HERE!"?

   I think that I will leave the news, as it is, alone and make some breakfast. Have a good weekend. Oh, by the way ... my sports update: U of A lost to the #1 team in the nation in football and won in basketball, but they have a real test in roundball today ... Kansas. My three NFL picks for Turkey Day didn't turn out so well I was 1-2. But one game I gave 3 1/2 points and my team only won by 3. I lost by a half point ... that sucks. Oh well! But,again, have a great weekend.

25 November 2010

Thanksgiving

 On this Thanksgiving day 2010, Hilda and I are very thankful to be so much in love with each other. It took us many decades of our lives, a few disagreements, and many other relationships before we met.We are also very thankful for our friends around the nation and world (Hi, Barry !), our internet friends and especially grateful to have the friends that we have in the American Legion  family. Although we don't always see eye to eye with them, we are grateful for their friendship and their love. We are also grateful for the family members with whom we are close and ... to our estranged family members and ex-friends ... we love you, forgive you (and ask for your forgiveness) and hope that one day we all shall be close once again. The holiday season from Thanksgiving, through Christmas and Hanukkah reminds us all of the joy of family and friends and the week after Christmas a new year begins. May the upcoming year bring you all much happiness, success and as old friendships continue ... may you be rewarded with new, lasting friendships.
  W. Antonio Rigney and Hilda J. Reiser-Rigney

24 November 2010

23 November

  Well, today started out pretty well ... I worked for Perry at ValuPlus and made $65 (could have made $80, with another $80 tomorrow ... which is now off, I needed that $80/$120 a lot) but when I talked to Hilda on the phone, I found out that she had a bad fall and her arm was killing her. I came home, took her to Urgent Care (sort of an Emergency Room) which we could ill afford and found that she had broken her Proximal Humerous ... in English, that is the upper bone in her right arm. Now, we have to get follow ups from an orthopedist (read as ... more $$$) and for the time being (3 months?) she will be in a sling, taking pain meds, icing her arm and she will need me to do certain things (getting her clothes on and off, bathing her, et al) until she is able to do for herself. She is miserable, but I hope that her happiness returns soon. I love her so much and hate to see her in pain.
   Our U of A Wildcats won again tonight. In 5 games this season, we have scored 414 points and given up 273 points. The per game average is 82.5 for us and 54.5 for our opponents ... we have averaged scoring 28 more points per game than our opponents. Now ... I do not expect this to continue, however there seems to be a light at the end of our tunnel. GO CATS !! As the head honcho on the TV show ... The A-Team (great name A-Team, A as in Arizona) used to say ... "I love it when a plan comes together". We play again on Thursday and we play Kansas on Saturday. Rough road, but that's the kind of road we travel.


   My NFL picks need to be in by tomorrow ... Turkey Day games on Thursday you know. But my Thursday picks are:

New England      -6.5        At Detroit     The Patriots and give the points
New Orleans       -3.5        At Dallas        Drew and the Saints, but the Plowboys could surprise 
Cincinnati            +9          At NY Jets     The Bengals and the points, I'm hoping they keep it close

  Hilda wishes her niece Cassie a happy Birthday today, we really love her and miss her. She is very intelligent and very pretty, a deadly combination. But her mom Gerrie (Hilda's youngest sister) is a pretty lady, so Cassie comes by it honestly.


    We both hope that all of you have a great Thanksgiving, we were going to work that day at the Legion serving dinner, but that is off. We'll miss donating our time, but there shall be other opportunities. So long for now.

21 November 2010

20/21 November

Yesterday, Saturday, was Family Festival Day at Randolph/Reid Park here in town. It is a 131 acre park a few miles from our house. Hilda and I went to the zoo (we hadn't been in a while) and walked through the park to see what was going on. There was a group(s) of children doing Mexican dances, etc., food booths, and some Heroes and Villains from a store here in the area. We then went to the Legion to play shuffleboard and watch football and then home to watch movies.
Some Star Wars Characters

A Storm Trooper

Ms Hilda and a Giraffe

Llama (pronounced Yama in Spanish)

I've always loved this waterwheel at the Zoo

A spoonbill inside the aviary

A Mexican dancing couple

Two lovely little Senoritas in their homemade regalia

A small Mariachi chases a small senorita

19 November 2010

NFL Picks for 21/22 Nov

My NFL picks have been going south over the last week or so. I am hoping they improve this week. I won on Da' Bears last night ... that puts me at 48-33 (59%). So ... here goes:

Oakland         +7.5         Pittsburgh        I'll take the Steelers and give the 

                                                                         points, but this could be an upset
Houston         +7            Jets                     Houston comes back, 

                                                                         I'll take the points
Baltimore      -7             Carolina            Ravens, the Panthers are horrible 

Washington  +6           Tennessee        Titans in a close one
Lions                +6           Dallas                 I can't believe that I'm taking the  

                                                                         Plowboys, my money says so, 
                                                                          but my heart pulls against them
Packers            -2.5        Vikings             
Vikes, Bret comes back again
Buffalo            +5.5        Bengals             Buffalo in an upset,  

                                                                         I'll take the points 
Cleveland       +2.5        Jaguars            Jaguars will more than cover
Arizona           +7            Chiefs               
Kansas City, our Cardinals will 
                                                                         lose in a close one,
Seattle             +10.5      Saints               Saints, but that's a lot of points
Falcons            -3            St Louis           Atlanta
Tampa Bay     +3           49er's               Tampa Bay covers
Colts                 +3.5       Patriots            Colts, I believe that the Pats are 

                                                                        the best team going right now, 
                                                                        but Peyton keeps it close
Giants              +2.5       Eagles               Giants will defend Vick better 

                                                                        others have, Eli comes through
Broncos           +9          San Diego        San Diego, but I think that 

                                                                        they'll have trouble covering

Random things @ 0300 Hrs

"The democracy will cease to exist when you take from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not." - Thomas Jefferson

"Here is a test to find whether your mission on earth is finished: If you're alive, it isn't." - Richard Bach 


"Time is the flesh and blood of death; death is not a skull, a skeleton, but a clock face, a sun hurtling through a sea of thin gas. A part of you has died since you began to read this sentence ... the more absolute death seems, the more authentic life becomes." - John Fowles (The Aristos)

Some of the 'odder' cars at the Vietnam Veteran's Car Show on the 13th ... my 65th B-Day (and my brother Mickey's 63rd)
An 'Uncle Sam' Bucket

That's a grenade on the Air Cleaner. A 'military' off road experience

This one is called "Anger Management"

My 2nd oldest G-son Devin Thomas Rigney and me 
taken at Hilda's and my apartment in Tucson. 
He is certainly growing up.


 
My brother Mickey and his wife Patricia at the Bellagio in Vegas over Veteran's Day. 
They lived in Vegas for years until his retirement and their move to Ft Worth.
Contrary to what they say, that IS NOT me in the background! 


17 November 2010

Valdez's trip to Mozambique

My very best friend in the world, what today's youngsters would call a BFF, Dr. Stanley S. "Valdez" McGowen recently took a hunting trip to Mozambique. Now, ... you must realize that he is blind and has been for about 20 years. He was in the Army in Vietnam, did stunt work with me in Arizona in the 70's, flew helicopters, etc., until the plane crash that cost him his sight. He went back to college (more properly to University) ... got his Masters and his PhD, taught in college, wrote 3 books, and continued to live as a true Texan should. He is the only blind man that I have ever heard of that has killed the Cape Buffalo in the wild (among other animals). Now he adds some more trophies to his collection and is now the first blind man to kill an African elephant in the wild. The elephant was an added bonus to his trip. His commentary is included as follows:

     " I went to Mozambique with Richard Sanchez, a professional videographer I met at the Dallas Safari Club convention. Richard filmed the safari for a TV producer, who should air the hunt on an outdoor show next season. We flew from Dallas - Fort Worth to Atlanta, overnighted at J-berg, RSA, and then flew to Mozambique. We hunted in the northern part along the Lugenda River. My main goal was a leopard, but did not bag one.  Weather was hot, 88-96F and the cats were lethargic -- plus the bushpigs and warthogs were dropping their litters and the cats could scoop up a quick snack quite easily and would not get on bait.  The first day I dropped a 350 lb. bushpig boar -- a nice trophy. During the next ten days I shot several animals for bait, including one sable that the lions had been after, he was scratched up and blind in one eye -- he had also broken off one horn, either defending himself from lions or other sable bulls.  I brought down a 41" Sable Antelope bull, a really nice trophy and a Niassa Wildebeest -- native only to the Niassa area in Mozambique and a small part of the Selous in Tanzania.  The tenth day we received a permit for a Problem Animal Control elephant, which, with several other animals had been raiding a "plantation" of bananas and sugar cane about 30 miles from our camp.  The local villagers had called for help as they could not run out the big animals with flaming torches and banging on pans. We made our stalk at night, not the easy way you see on TV, where the hunter stalks near the elephant and shoots him in the brain. We had to make our stalk through thick brush, uneven terrain full of elephant holes and banana trees they had pushed over.  The winds were swirling and we were never sure if the big animals would wind us and stampede in our direction!  We made our way downwind and to within 25 yards of one bull and the PH decided to shoot him; there were two others VERY near us as well, and we were not really sure where the other 5-6 elephants were.  Again, we were concerned about a stampede when we shot our selected bull.  We had taken the laser off my .300 Winchester Magnum and put it on the PH's .458 Winchester Magnum for more firepower. When I turned on the laser the elephant saw it and flared his ears a bit, indicating that he was not pleased and might charge the light. One PH quickly directed me on target and I placed a shot through the elephant's heart. The second PH immediately broke the elephant's shoulder with his .500 Jefffery's and I placed a second raking shot through his lungs.  The bull ran about 75 yards and piled up.  The second PH followed him up and put in an insurance hot.  Pretty exciting!!
Dr McGowen is 3rd from left

Dr McGowen with his Sable Antelope bull

His Niassa Wildebeest

With one of his warthogs


Congratulations to my good friend Valdez on his latest foray into Africa. He is one of the most remarkable people that I have the pleasure, or have ever had the pleasure, to know, if not the MOST remarkable. He is an inspiration to me daily.

14 November 2010

11/13/10

Well, the 91st Annual Veteran's Day Parade has come and gone ... will post pictures on my BLOG tomorrow. We have been resting up, it was a lot of work. Next year, we'll have 10 months to plan it and set it up. This year we only got notified the end of July that the City of Tucson would be unable to assist us as in past years. A lot of people have jumping through hoops, ... especially Joe Roberts the SAL Commander at Post 7 ... in order that this year's parade come come to fruition.
    Today ... I'd like to wish my brother Mickey in Ft Worth a happy birthday ... he and I are two year twins (he was born on my 2nd birthday). So, he is 63 today and I am 65. Today is the day in 1982 when the Vietnam Memorial was dedicated. It is also the birthday of King Edward III of England in 1312, Robert Louis Stevenson (1850), TV producer/director Garry Marshall (1934), Actor Joe Mantegna (1947 ... same year as Mickey), and television talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel (1967).
    Isn't the internet something !!! I received birthday greetings this AM (electronically generated of course) from ESPN, CVS and Walgreen's Pharmacies, two Conservative E-magazines, Famous Sam's (a local Sports bar franchise), Applebee's and Classmates.com. Birthday SPAM ... how interesting.
   Hilda and I will be off to the Nam-Jam car show this morning and we shall play shuffleboard with our friends at the Legion this afternoon. We need to sign up today as volunteers for the Post 36 Thanksgiving Day feed. I'll probably serve and she will probably waitress. We enjoy doing that on Thanksgiving day each year. We don't have money to help others, but we do have time. So, our collective time (and our hearts) is what we give to helping others ... it is the least that we can do.
   The NFL treated me badly last week ... I became 40-26. I won Thursday Night so I am 41-26. This week I am getting on onto the limb again with my picks.
Cincinnati           +7            Indianapolis         I never go against Peyton
Houston              +1.5        Jacksonville
Tennessee           -1.5         Miami    
Minnesota           -1            Chicago     very uneasy about this one
Detroit                 +2.5       Buffalo   
NY Jets                 -3           Cleveland    
Carolina               +7          Tampa Bay            
Kansas City         -1           Denver        
St. Louis              +6          San Francisco            
 Seattle                 +3          Arizona            
Dallas                   +13.5     NY Giants     Too many points, but Giants should win
New England     +4.5      Pittsburgh            
Monday Night                
Philadelphia         -3                 Washington     42.5  Bet the Over

The Parade beginning, Legion Riders and VFW Riders ... Rolling Thunder


A poster I made for display, Tucson's 31 KIA's from Iraq/Afghanistan

Krischel Augustine, who performed the National Anthem in Dine' (Navajo) ... check her out on You Tube !!

01 November 2010

Monday Morning Quarterback

Yesterday was the worst day in the NFL for me this year. I went 6-6, one I lost because of the point spread. I picked the Chiefs and they were favored by 7 but won by less. that puts me at 34 and 18 (65%) for the last four weeks.Hopefully, Peyton will help me out tonight.

31 October 2010

Point of View

Some angles and/or views are weird.
Tucson Ferderal Court Building

2nd View

My Apartment Complex
Office Building
Railings outside my front door, looking up

Halloween 2010

I started a post on Thursday and something happened and I never finished or sent it.
    Today is Thursday ... the 28th of October, just before Halloween weekend. I looked in the mirror this AM and realized I do not need a mask, I'll just go as an Grumpy Old Fart. Two days ago was the anniversary of the famous (infamous) Gunfight at The O.K. Corral. I have never figured out what made it so famous, but ... I spent 10 years of my life in Tombstone re-enacting it on the spot where it happened. Or as close as you can get without holding the shootout in the middle of a state highway.
   Stage and screen actor James MacArthur, who played "Danno" in the original version of television's "Hawaii Five-O," died Thursday at age 72. Most people do not know that his mother was the famed actress Helen Hayes, often referred to as "First Lady of the American Theater." Silent film star Lillian Gish was his godmother.
  Today in 1919, prohibition began in the United States. I, for one, am glad that period is over.
Some of those born on this date include:
   Rifle maker Eliphalet Remington in 1793
   Country musician Charlie Daniels in 1936 (age 74) ... fiddler, singer, songwriter & American
   Actor Dennis Franz in 1944 (age 66) ... one of the best TV cops ever
   Rock singer Wayne Fontana in 1945 (age 65) ... and his band The Mindbenders. He is 26 days older than me.
   Olympic decathlon champion-turned-sportscaster Bruce Jenner in 1949 (age 61)
   Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates in 1955 (age 55)
   Actress Julia Roberts in 1967 (age 43)
   Actor Joaquin Phoenix in 1974 (age 36)

    O.K., that is what I wrote. It is Sunday now and I am getting in the mood for the NFL. Yesterday, our Arizona Wildcats won a squeaker against UCLA in the Rose Bowl. We are now 7-1 and tied with Stanford for 2nd in the PAC 10. The #1 in the PAC 10 is ALSO #1 in the nation ... Oregon. Also yesterday ... my brother Mickey was happy as his Rangers won a World Series game against the Giants.
    I am listening to TexasExileRadio on the computer ... The Wrinkle Neck Mules are on right now. I, being a poet, am in love with certain lines in songs / poems / writing that really portray a thought in an unusual way. I heard one a little bit ago in a song by Jason Boland and the Stragglers. It goes " ... when my life was as empty as the bottle by my bed ...". Gawd, wish I had written that. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.


   Today's NFL picks: I am 28-12 the last 3 weeks (that's how long I have been publishing my picks) but I am worried this week. Oh well!!
Bucs +3 over our Cards / 49er's -2 over Broncos / Jaguars +7 over Cowboys / Redskins +2 1/2 over Lions / Jets -6 over the Packers / Rams +3 over Carolina /Dolphins +2 over Bengals / Chiefs -7 over the Bills  /  Titans + 4 over Chargers / Raiders -2 over the Seahawks / Vikings over the Patriots  / Steelers +1 over the Saints    Monday: Colts -5 1/2 over the Texans

   Tuesday is ELECTION DAY 2010 ... please get out and vote. This country needs help and you need to make your voice known. I wish that you all would vote for the Conservative candidates, but I know you won't. But I think that you should. As they say in Chicago .. "Vote, and vote often!".
  Have been corresponding with Dr. Stan "Valdez" McGowen my BFF (and old stunt work buddy) about his Mozambique trip. Although Valdez is blind, he really enjoys all the aspects of life, hunting included. He is an inspiration to me and to many others. When I think that my life has gone bad, I think of what he has done with his since his airplane accident. Two college degrees, teaching in college, three well written books, etc ad infinitum. Besides, Ms Hilda loves him to death. Anyway, he went to Africa with Richard Sanchez, a professional videographer he met at the Dallas Safari Club convention. Richard filmed the safari for a TV producer, who should air the hunt on an outdoor show next season. He says (and I quote):
   " My main goal was a leopard, but did not bag one.  Weather was hot, 88-96F and the cats were lethargic -- plus the bushpigs and warthogs were dropping their litters and the cats could scoop up a quick snack quite easily and would not get on bait.  The first day I dropped a 350# bushpig boar -- a nice trophy. I shot one sable that the lions had been after, he was scratched up and blind in one eye -- hed also broken off one horn, either defending himself from lions or other sable bulls. I brought down a 41" sable bull, a really nice trophy and a Niassa Wildebeest -- native only to the Niassa area in Mozambique and a small part of the Selous in Tanzania.  The tenth day we received a permit for a Problem Animal Control elephant, which, with several other animals had been raiding a "plantation" of bananas and sugar cane about 30 miles from our camp.  The local villagers had called for help as they could not run out the big animals with flaming torches and banging on pans. We made our stalk at night, not the easy way you see on TV, where the hunter stalks near the elephant and shoots him in the brain. We had to make our stalk through thick brush, uneven terrain full of elephant holes and banana trees they had pushed over.  The winds were swirling and we were never sure if the big animals would wind us and stampede -- hopefully not in our direction! We made our way downwind and to within 25 yards of one bull and the PH decided to shoot him; there were two others VERY near us as well, and we were not really sure where the other 5-6 elephants were.  Again, we were concerned about a stampede when we shot our selected bull. We had taken the laser off my .300 Win Mag and put it on the PH's .458 Win Mag for more firepower. When I turned on the laser the elephant saw it and flared his ears a bit, indicating that he was not pleased and might charge the light. One PH quickly directed me on target and I placed a shot through the elephant's heart. The second PH immediately broke the elephant's shoulder with his .500 Jefffery's and I placed a second raking shot through his lungs.  The bull ran about 75 yards and piled up. The second PH followed him up and put in an insurance shot. Pretty exciting!! No leopard, but maybe next time. I had a successful safari, but could not bring back the ivory. US Fish and Game preclude elephant ivory imports from Mozambique.
   Well, I have some bacon in the oven that I must check on and start Ms Hilda's breakfast.

25 October 2010

Monday Night

    Monday Night Football is not on yet, but I went 9 and 4 yesterday. That puts me at 27 and 12 for the last three weeks. Hopefully tonight, we get a Giant's victory and I will be at 28 and 12 or 70%, ... if not, I'll be at 67.5%. I am hopeful that Eli and the boys will beat the dreaded Dallas Plowboys and "Hollywood" Romo.
   Tuesday addition: I am at 28-12, but I am sorry that Tony Romo got injured. I don't wish that on anyone, even a Cowboy.
 

24 October 2010

Entryways


I love our enclosed walled yards here in Tucson, but I am fascinated by entrances. Here are a few that have caught my eye of late.







Sunday -United Nations Day (ar-r-r-ghh !)

Today's quotes
 John Adams: "In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm and three or more is a congress."

Alan Corenk: "Television is more interesting than people. If it were not, we would have people standing in the corners of our rooms." 

Sir Barnett Cocks: A committee is a cul-de-sac down which ideas are lured and then quietly strangled.

  
   My BFF Dr. Stanley S. "Valdez" McGowen has returned from his sojourn in Mozambique. He bagged a gold medal sable antelope and a Niassa wildebeest, and became (as far as we know) the first and only blind hunter to down an elephant! Congratulations Bwana!
 
   Here in the desert Southwest, nothing much has changed, although the weather has been a tad cooler. Only supposed to get to about 75 today with a low of 50. These temps are comparable to Mickey's in Ft Worth and Dean's in Baltimore. It should be back up to the high 80's toward the end of the week though. Our monsoon ... which used to be judged according to Dew Point Temps, but now has arbitrary dates attached to it ... started late this year (very late) and has continued into October. September and October are historically dry months, but not this year.

  My (our) Arizona Wildcats played Last night and were 6 1/2 point favorites . I was wary of the game ... we could very well have gotten surprised. Since we had to play without our regular quarterback. But, we won 44-4 to go to 6-1.



The NFL lines are in and I am going to make my picks.
Steelers       by     3 over the Dolphins       ---  I'll Take the Dolphins and the 3
Falcons        by 4.5 over the Bengals         ---  I'll take Atlanta and give the points
Chiefs           by    9 over the Jaguars         ---  The Chiefs
Titans           by    3 over the Eagles            ---   Eagles and the 3
Bears            by    3 over the Redskins      ---   Redskins and 3
Saints           by  13 over the Browns         ---   Browns and 13
Ravens         by  13 over the Bills                ---  Ravens and give 13
49ers            by    3 over Carolina               ---  Carolina
Bucs              by    3 over the Rams             ---  Rams and the 3
Seahawks            5 over MY Cardinals     ---  Cardinals (my brain says no, but my heart says yes)
Chargers              3 over the Patriots        ---  Patriots
Broncos                7 over the Raiders        ---  Raiders and 7
Packers                 3 over the Vikings         ---  Bret and the Vikings pull it out 
Dallas                    3  over the Giants          ---  Giants (come on Eli!)
   
This on the news today: 
   In Seattle, illegal immigrants going door-to-door for Democratic candidates !!

                                                                         Associated Press Photo
     In this photograph taken Sunday, Oct. 16, 2010, Maria Gianni poses for a portrait at a phone bank in Seattle being used by OneAmerica Votes, an organization that has launched a vote drive targeting naturalized citizen voters. Gianni, an illegal immigrant, volunteers with the organization as it tries to steer immigrant voters toward Democratic candidates.