Monday, September 23, 2019

X is "for the birds" *

Last week was an up and down kind of week.  We had the Grand Dog with us while MBD and SIL took a long weekend for some alone time.  (Which we HIGHLY encourage as "Grand Dog" isn't the only "Grand" life form Mrs J and I would like to have in our lives .... Ahem ... Hello? ... Anyone listening?)
Tallulah (pronounced (by me) Cholula). 
 As with most puppies, and Lieutenant Fighter Pilots, she's "All velocity, no vector".    Canine flight handled her generally well, a few growls and an ugly face or two seemed to convey their intended message.

Feline flight however, decided an extended stay in their closet loft was advisable.  But their humans are well trained,  water and kibble was delivered to their door.

We also paid off the remainder of the mortgage on this house.
2014 Texas Hills Vineyard Tempranillo  Most Excellent!

That called for a bit of a celebration.

But.....There's all those THINGS on Social Media and what passes for the news nowadays.  Makes one wonder if it's all going to 4377 in a hand basket.

I mean really...They want to impeach the President because he negotiated with the Ukraine? Isn't that what he's SUPPOSED to do?  Did he sign a treaty without the advise and consent of the Senate?  Where's the THERE there?

Apparently, one party is all frickin' in on "Hell yes, we're gonna take your AR-15".

Well, folks, I think you should read this document . I believe you'll find it interesting.  It begins with

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them...
 You say we can't leave?  We did it before, when "some people did something" and decided we didn't need our weapons.  In fact most of the reasons for leaving delineated in that glorious, wonderful document are becoming factors again.  So...Not being a constitutional lawyer, I think we just re-sign it and deliver it to Congress.  Done and Done.

As I said, an up and down week.  So, I get up this morning and head in to confer with the Big Guy.  Walking out to the truck, I see this sight.

Get to church and sit down and pick up the prayer book to read this week's reading (for to better understand the Priest's sermon among other things).  The first reading is Amos 8 4-7.

"Hear this, you that trample on the needy,
    and bring to ruin the poor of the land, saying, “When will the new moon be over so that we may sell grain;
and the sabbath, so that we may offer wheat for sale?
We will make the ephah small and the shekel great,
    and practice deceit with false balances, buying the poor for silver
    and the needy for a pair of sandals,  and selling the sweepings of the wheat.”

 The Lord has sworn by the pride of Jacob:
Surely I will never forget any of their deeds."
Ahhh. I say to myself.  It has always been thus.

Which pretty much summed up the Priest's sermon.  He's new-ish here, came from the Congo. Has a bit of a French accent, which I like, I have to pay attention to understand. He's also got a different point of view on how things are here compared to back home.  Which got me to thinking.  (Always a good thing in church).

Maybe, just maybe, things aren't so bad.  Maybe they're just being spun up and then brought to our attention to further someone's agenda.

Which is not to say that some things aren't actually bad, just that they're being blown completely out of proportion.  And people are over reacting, some intentionally.

So, I come home and start looking for a subject to post about.  When I come across this video

Which I think is exactly what's going to happen.  They're going to pick and pick and pick (peck if you wish), until a line is crossed.  Then Bang! They're exposed for the nothings they are.

So, again, another input from a seemingly random source.  Then I read this article.

Well, I mean really, if we're supposed to be at each other's throats, why didn't the driver keep it all for himself?

As I continued my daily perusal of the usual suspect bloggers, I stopped at Borepatch's.  I won't embed the video I found there, so go and bump up his visitation numbers.  I think you'll like it.

Finally, I'm walking back to check on Mrs J. (She's working on a trip for MBD/SIL's family) and brush across our bulletin board knocking some useless information off, and revealing a document that had been put up long ago.  It reads:

"God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time;
enjoying one moment at a time;
accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
forever in the next.
Okay, Lord...Got the message!  Will (attempt to) comply.

Besides,  Politicians and their enabler's are...

More Birds

All puffed up and strutting.  Who needs them?  Pretty much useless.  Except for the above...Around Thanksgiving.

Initial Sizing complete

I'm  going to spend some time in my shop.  Current project is a desk for my sister.

Or sit on the porch and watch Hummingbirds do Basic Fighter Maneuvers.


Spend some time teaching my youngest how to drive.  Which will be important as Mrs J and I become older.  She's pretty good now, but her choices are steering or using the pedals, not both.

And taking care of someone I dearly love.

Because much like this morning...

Tomorrow, the sun will come up, and I will do what's necessary to take care of things that need taking care of.

Never Give Up, Never Surrender!

*  Values of X
The Press,
School Employees
Communists, Socialists, Democrats (But I repeat myself)


  1. Old Amos, the field hand prophet. He told it like it was, and didn't mince words. His job was to poke fruit with a stick, so it could ripen. And God sent him to the high rollers, the spiritual elites. I love it. I wonder if they understood plain language? I doubt he was erudite, or verbose.

    Good stuff today. When things stack like that, you know that God is interested in you. He's talking.... Good start to the week.

    1. "...understood plain language..." No more than their counterparts today. Substitute "Police have no duty to protect you" and "Hell yes, we're gonna take your AR-15" for portions of that reading and you'd still get a pretty good match to the moral.


  2. Have a number of stonecrop sedum plants in the perennial garden alongside the driveway, the bees really are going to town visiting those blooms now. An occasional hummer will visit the neighbor's sunflowers though there aren't many feeders out for them. Another day, another change of seasons, life goes on despite the hubbub in the MSM. Spent yesterday working out in the yard, didn't watch any NFL at all, third season now not watching, haven't missed it. Good visuals juvat, congrats on the house!

    1. I haven't watched an NFL game since 1991. Overpaid thugs whose only talent is running, catching and beating people up (both on field and off). No I haven't missed it and it gets easier every year.


  3. A rejuvenating post Juvat. We occasionally dog-sit our great granddog, (My daughter emphatically announces "I AM NOT A GRANDMA!!!) much to Milly's displeasure. She, Harley, is a Chihuahua Yorkie mix, loving and cute as a bug's ear. As far as grandkids are concerned I like to say "Had I known how great they were I'da had them first!"

    Congrats on the house, time does fly. We just started on another "crushing burden of debt" ourselves, coming off 16 years of RV Fulltiming. Some are saying "Ya gotta be nuts doing that at your age" but it sure beats paying someone else's mortage and will leave something for the kids. Don't know if we'll make contact in November because we'll be wrapped up in our friends nuptials but if the occasion arises I'll make the try.

    1. Thanks, Flugelman, No worries, I understand Friends and Family responsibilities, but we're flexible if the opportunity arises.

  4. Teaching driving to your student could be a ruff experience and you might have to paws from time to time.

    I wonder if we tend to fret about stuff more than the norm is because our work/life experiences dealt with dangerous things, and we know that failure is always an option, and people can get badly hurt or die.
    But usually a liberal teacher's bad choices don't result in someone dying. (at least not right away, and not in front of them)
    I have to think about that a bit more.

    The hummingbird video. Cool.
    We have friends near State College in PA, and they found that bears like sugar water. In the aftermath of the bear feeding, there was little left of their feeders.

    It is a great feeling to be mortgage free.

    Good points.

    1. Yes, and just for the record, that was on the road to our house, there was nobody coming and she jumped up to look at the deer that I had stopped for.

      The video didn't really capture how many hummers were feeding. I enjoy sitting out there and watching them maneuver, brings back memories.


  5. A good post juvat.

    A good weekend was had, not sure if I'm ready to return to the blogging thing just yet.

    Rick Atkinson's latest (The British Are Coming) has me enthralled. Brilliant writing.

    1. Thanks. I'm about a third of the way through Dragon Jaw. May have to take a trip east and pass a certain grave and display a numerical indication of my respect for the person lying there. If you know what I mean.

    2. I know exactly what you mean...

    3. What, you don't have a standing order to salute said area of grave already written?

    4. Beans,
      Well, depends on traffic, headed East, if I salute, cars in the other lanes might misinterpret, and since a significant portion of Texans carry....That could be unfortunate. If I'm headed West and salute, Mrs J might misinterpret...At that point, I'd rather be facing a carrying Texan. Just sayin'

    5. What? She doesn't agree with your assessment of the man? She doesn't think he's #1?

  6. Those first lines of the Serenity Prayer, once I really listened, became almost a mantra.
    Now it guides daily, except maybe when driving the city streets.

    The li’l hummers are fascinating to watch, particularly when they’re in late numbers.

    1. Driving in general puts that prayer to the test for me. I have been known to go the long way, just to avoid driving behind people.

      Hummers are fascinating to watch, I agree.

  7. Congrats on your mortgage. Free at last! Well, except for property tax, I assume. Property ownership is not taken lightly in this state. In one of my wife's books about Texas, they reference a time when the words "trespass" and "suicide" were considered synonyms. We own our place as well. Got snagged by a sales call once and decided to play along. They were pitching some sort of mortgage refi product. I played dumb and interested for few minutes (cue Ernest--"Hey Vern!) then said "Well, I got this here piece of paper that says "deed" at the top. What's that mean?". Click.

    I am still healthy at my age.
    I can still get around under my own steam.
    I still have choices.
    I try to remember to tell the man upstairs thanks.

    1. Thanks, IMHO, property tax should be based on the value I purchased the property on. Not on the value, some body with more money than brains purchased his similar property for. Nothing has changed on my side of the equation. I'm not making more money, nothing's changed on my property to change the value. The only difference is some bureaucrat says because the last property sold for this much, the value of all property must be that much. Bah!

    2. Well, that (stupid bureaucrat) and idjits from Califruitopiastan paying way too much for land because they're idiots and want to spread their mental disease to Texas.

    3. Yep! "How much do you want for your house?"
      "Well, we're asking 350K."
      "Sorry, can't offer you any less than 700K"

    4. Ain't that the truth. California got that right with proposition 13 in 1978. This is one of the main reasons we chose Tarrant County--

      "How Do I Obtain an Over 65 Exemption And What Does It Do?

      Persons who are over 65 years of age may file for an exemption in addition to the residential homestead exemption with TAD. If you qualify for the over 65 exemption you would be entitled to a tax ceiling on school and locally adopted city, county and special district assessments. Please note that this exemption would limit your taxes only – not your home’s value – as this could change with prevailing market conditions."

      We know folks who have successfully challenged their tax bill, but the very next year the valuation on their property goes right back up. What a racket.

      For those living elsewhere, here's a good explanation--

    5. Next year for me on that exemption, but Mrs J qualifies next month.

    6. Ha. I'm not the only one who married an older woman! Ha!

  8. Good GOOD post, Juvat! That Serenity Prayer can sure cover a lot of situations.

    1. It's much like the Serenity Prayer that most Gun Owners say when in public. But the Gun Owner's prayer is a tad shorter.

      God, give me the strength to accept the things I cannot change,
      Because I only have so much ammo.

    2. I think that falls under the "Courage" section in the actual.

    3. Or my other "gun" prayer...

      "Dear lord, should I pass, please don't let my wife sell my guns for what I told her I paid for them."

  9. Nice to read a "Glass half full" post. Thank you!

  10. Seems our thoughts have been working in similar fashion, just mine tipped over to full rant and yours stayed at a nicer, more gentler version.

    Glad you now have paid off the house. Every little bit helps in these troubled times. Now you can start construction on that bunker, I mean workshop...

    And, yes, it's the little things, like dogs, seeing our significant others in gentle moments, hummingbirds, and such that remind us that God hasn't forsaken us, and these aren't the end times, yet.

    1. Yeah, that's me all right. Kinder, gentler. If you look those terms up on wikipedia, my picture will show up....under the antonym section.

  11. Hmmmm....your posts triggers a remembrance of a "long train of abuses and usurpations".

    1. Yes, it does doesn't it. Some things (e.g. tyrants, despots and socialists) never change do they?

  12. Doing the needful IS what we are supposed to. HOW we do it is up to us, and that's where a lot of folks fall down on the job. And if you don't keep those feeders filled, those little hummers WILL be knocking on the door and demanding you get off your ass and get to work! :-)

    1. We've got 15 or so on the property. Right now, Mrs J is refilling them twice a day.

    2. Funny thing about Hummingbirds, is that their range over the US of A has expanded greatly in the last 100 years, almost like they are getting more numerous because we humans are feeding them.

      And they are gorgeous little flying jewels.


Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)