Absolutely Accurate

Looks like a potentially beautiful weekend shaping up. The predictions of flooding and savage winds passed by again. I’m now wondering if the Whiz O Meter is actually having a contrarian effect on the weather.

Might it be that the areas traditionally besieged by tornadoes could pay the folks at Channel 11 to predict tornadoes, so that the tornadoes would never appear? I might be on to something here. Since the beginning of time man has hoped to control the weather. Maybe the weather can be controlled by a system that bills itself to be “absolutely accurate”, but rarely is. I mean, I’m sure that the Whiz O Meter prediction is absolutely accurate for somewhere, it just doesn’t seem to be working for the areas where it is predicted. Maybe the mountains make the Whiz O Meter’s radar waves bounce funny, and the flatlanders don’t know how to read the signals. I’m not that technical, I just know when something doesn’t work.

I wonder if I’d owe Channel 11 any royalties for using their service to predict weather that was different than what my area received. I’d have to figure out what the fudge factor is before beginning my service. I’d need to determine who actually got the weather that was associated with our prediction. Did it land North, East, South or West of us? After figuring out who was receiving our prediction, I’d then need to locate who received the prediction that corresponded to our weather. That way I’d be able to sell my “absolutely accurate” weather prediction to folks who consider accuracy and important element of forecasting.

I’m thinking that I’d add on some extra benefits to my “We’re Not Channel 11, We Are Absolutely Accurate”, service. The head fool at Channel 11 weather likes to count lightning strikes when we get a rainstorm. I think I could go him one better. I could rebroadcast his count, and then absolutely guarantee that no one in our area would be struck by lightning. I might have to buy a little insurance policy in case one of my viewers decided to go stand on top of Brasstown Bald with a copper rod in their hand. You know, some fools will test any theory.

Since the odds of being struck by lightning in the U.S. is about 1 in 700,000, I’m thinking my insurance premium is going to be pretty low. I don’t know if you could get a term life policy on a “John Doe” with the beneficiary to “be named later”, but I’m sure somebody would take my money. After all, an insurance company insured Madonna’s breasts for two million dollars, and we all know gravity is going to win that battle. In fact, you’re far less likely to be struck by lightning than showing the effects of aging. I feel like I’m on safe ground here with my “no one struck by lightning guarantee”. It certainly gives me a one up on the Whiz O Meter.

Another service I plan on offering is “look out the window”. That’s when my prediction will be tied to me actually looking out the window and seeing if it’s raining, snowing, or whatever. I’m sure everybody else is as sick and tired of watching the weather forecast of “right now”, and it not relating to the weather of “right now”. Showing me a map of my area with squiggly lines drawn in different colors that tell me I should be getting rain, does not trump actually looking out the window and seeing that it is not raining.

I plan on elevating the current standards of weather forecaster to a new level. The first step on that path is accurately relating current conditions. If I can’t be trusted to look out the window and report what I’m seeing, how can I possibly be trusted to prognosticate about the future? I think I’ve got a plan. Watch for me on KickStarter.

The Dale O Meter, coming soon to a Public TV Station near you.

My Cross To Bear

The rains yesterday have produced a more conducive environment for those of us with lungs. While pollen time is not over, perhaps we’ll have a couple of days of rainfall to take care of the rest of it. Since last night’s storm I find that I’m down to about 12 CPM, that’s Coughs Per Minute, from a high of 60 CPM or so last week. I’d love to get that back to 0 CPM as soon as possible.

While “sheltering in place”, God I love that phrase, I followed up my Allman Brother’s revival by reading Gregg Allman’s biography, “My Cross To Bear”. I can’t say that I’m a big fan of rock star’s biographies. I read “Slow Hand” by Eric Clapton years ago, and it said pretty much what I thought it would say. Poor kid, smart, but bad in school, found an outlet in music and exploited his talents until he was wealthy enough to become a drug addict. Some really cool stuff happened along the way, and through pictures that were taken and interviews of other people that were there, he remembers the cool things. Don’t do drugs.

Well, I can’t say that Gregg Allman’s book is much different. There are some historical items worth mentioning, though. There was quite a bit of crossover with the Allmans and Eric Clapton. Most specifically, on the iconic “Layla” album. There were also some shared gigs where the Allman Brothers and Eric Clapton and his band would play at the same venue. The fact that Derek and the Dominoes were stuck until Duane Allman arrived is well documented. It was Duane who provided the intro to “Layla” and all of the slide guitar work on the album.

In those days, the raging debate was who was the best lead guitar, Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton or Duane Allman? Like a friend of mine used to say, “the best damn guitar player that ever lived, died on October 29th, 1971 in Macon, Georgia”. I can’t say that I disagree. In fact, in his autobiography, Eric Clapton refers to Duane Allman as being the best guitarist he’s ever seen. Rolling Stone magazine ranks Duane Allman as number two behind Jimi Hendrix. If he was not the best, he was darn close, and we can only imagine what his loss did to the rest of the band. We can begin to imagine what effect Duane’s death played in Gregg’s subsequent addiction to drugs and alcohol. Gregg helps us out by writing about 19 chapters detailing the loss.

I’m going to draw a hard line here. I know the boys were drinking and drugging before they became famous. There really is no other way that is going to turn out. The unknowns are if you are going to run out of money, or luck, first. Gregg talks often about giving up on the band and becoming a dentist or something. It is somewhat a recurrent theme, Gregg was bright, could accomplish a lot, but chose to follow his muse instead. The fact that his muse required a state of inebriation to be channeled says a lot to me. Thank God he didn’t become a dentist. Using his songwriting regimen as a metaphor, Dr. Gregg would need a bump of heroin to do a filling.

Gregg loved women, so much so that he married six times. I can’t say that all of the women didn’t bear some responsibility in the failures, even Cher. Gregg has appeared to be unapologetically himself. The women who chose him as a mate thinking that they would change him were naive at best. At worst, they were the groupies that were portrayed in the movie “Almost Famous”, which was about the Allman Brothers. These women elevated their status from “road wives” to housewives, to ex-wives. Gregg clearly had issues with women.

Gregg’s relationship with a higher power comes after Gregg’s near death experience. Gregg has had a liver transplant because of the cancer that was found metastasizing there. Gregg spends the last chapter of his book explaining the clarity that he has now that he is sober, and his feeling of peace with the universal consciousness. Being old and sober will do that to you.

It’s an interesting thing to dislike someone as a person while worshipping their music. I’m going to ponder on that while I give tribute to Gregg for writing one of the great songs of all time, named after a little girl in a 7-11.

Get On Up

The weather is a little better, as is the coughing and hacking that has become my existence. We had a few hours of high winds, the blowing variety, not the tornadic variety. I understand some folks lost power due to the lines blowing down. I understand that burying lines underground keeps them from all sorts of peril. Would a lineman still be a lineman if the line was buried underground?

This was one of the great mysteries I pondered while driving over to the Walmart in Blairsville. I was intent on picking out a good movie for movie night. I figured I’d go all the way to the $11.99 discount bin if necessary to find a good movie. Heck, I might even look at the racks. I needed something with an adult theme, not too adult mind you, to offset some of the grandkid’s recent choices.

The $2.99 and $3.99 bins were filled with anime and Care Bears stuff. Just what I was trying to avoid. I found a copy of “Steel Magnolias” in the $7.99 bin, and that was going to be my fall back if nothing better turned up. Fortunately the $9.99 bin held a winner, “Get On Up”, the story of James Brown. Being a movie specifically about a black person that was not involved in a group of white people blowing things up, the movie had not played at the The Bijou. Although he was born in South Carolina, most of us consider James Brown one of the most famous Georgians ever. After all, he started singing gospel over in Toccoa, which is just down the road a bit from here. He lived all of his life in Georgia and died in Atlanta, so I’m willing to call him a native son.

The movie recounts Brown’s life from the time he recognizes he is alone in this world and has to hustle for himself, until the end. In the early scenes Brown appears to be about eight when he is out hustling on the streets trying to take care of himself. He is influenced by the showmanship of an Evangelical minister and finds that he has a voice as well. As Brown hones his craft and his voice, he teams up with a group of singers that bill themselves as “The Flames”. The band evolves into James Brown and the Famous Flames and all of the hard feelings that come from one member being more famous than the others, rises to the top.

Eventually all but one member of the original group quits, and James Brown goes on without them. The movie reinforces the fact that James Brown was a perfectionist, but he expected perfection from his self as well. He was a man whose talents allowed him to meet Presidents and heads of state, but he never lost his common touch. He continually worked to reinforce pride within the black community, and his iconic, “I’m Black and I’m Proud” has stood as an anthem for black children since it was released in 1968.

James had an eye for the ladies and was married at least four times. After his death, there was a huge squabble over his will, as there always seems to be. Ex-wives and children were coming out of the woodwork to claim their share of James Browns legacy. In fact, I don’t know if it is settled today, the movie did not cover that part.

The movie did cover a lot of his music with Chadwick Boseman doing a very fine job of portraying Brown through the years. I can’t imagine how hard Boseman must have worked to get Brown’s dance steps down, even for the little short bursts shown on the film. It was good to see Dan Akroyd in the role of Brown’s manager and Octavia Spencer in the role of Brown’s aunt. In fact the movie was very well cast with Craig Robinson playing the part of Maceo “come blow your horn” Parker.

It was a good pick, more so for the songs than the theme. I’ll leave you with the reminder of what a great entertainer Jame Brown was. This song was originally cut in 1955:


It’s a sad thing to have to put behind something you enjoy because your body just doesn’t want to do it anymore. I guess that’s true for every profession that has a physical component to it, not just park supervisor. I often think about professional athletes that have to decide that it’s time to hang it up. Of course sometimes the decision is taken away from them, like Formula One racers. I think about Ayrton Senna who won the F1 world championship three times before his death at 34. In the documentary, “Hunt vs. Lauda”, they point out repeatedly that Formula One racing is the world’s deadliest sport. It was like it was preordained that if you were going to be a champion, you would die in the car. The competition is that fierce. Philosophers wax that if you “die doing something you love” it’s not as bad. Seem like it’s just as fatal to me. Formula One racing is not that important in our area, even though we do have a track nearby in Braselton. The South prefers NASCAR, where longevity is less of an issue.

The South also loves wrestling, or “wrasslin”, as we call it. I can remember following “Georgia Championship Wrestling” very intensely back in the day. My participation in high school wrestling eventually led to the conclusion that professional wrestling was indeed fake, but that didn’t stop of us from attending every live match we could in the Municipal Auditorium in Atlanta. I was also a devotee of the Saturday night telecasts on Channel 2. The TV telecasts were basically build ups for the matches in the Auditorium the following Friday night. There was always some grudge between two fellows that could only be resolved by a cage match in the Auditorium. I remember attending some big battle royal that former professional football player “Dick The Bruiser” won. In addition to a bunch of money, there was a new Cadillac awarded to the winner. “The Bruiser” had the audacity to have a private train car brought down from his hometown Chicago, pre-match,  to take the Cadillac back with him. All of us locals were incensed at the chutzpah.

Stirring up the hoypoloi was what professional wrestling was all about. Finding out that some of the most bitter rivals in the ring, were the best of friends out of the ring came as quite a shock to most of us. It was so easy to get trapped in the theatrics of the show that you were willing to discount the fact that if it was real, most of these guys would be dead. How many times can you get hit over the head with a folding chair and it not cause some permanent damage? Of course, we devotees of the sport believed in the reality of professional wrestling as surely as the Resurrection. Any suggestion to the contrary was heresy.

My first insight into the fakery was watching a wrestler take a bottle cap and open a cut on his own forehead. Profuse sweating made the wound look like he’d gone through the windshield of a car traveling seventy miles an hour. Since the wrestler was the “hero”, all of us locals were outraged at the evil done to our champion. I’m sure that the “Bad Guy” in every match had more to fear from the crowd than he did his opponent. And yet, they survived, and most lived to very ripe old ages. Many of the old school wrestlers continue to compete up into their sixties. One fellow, Bob Armstrong, is 76 and is still wrestling.

In recent years it seems that the thing that professional wrestlers have to fear the most, is themselves. There’s been several losses due to performance enhancing drugs and the effects that they create in the body. I guess the philosophy is that they have to look like the biggest, baddest athletes and if it takes performance enhancers to get there, it’s just how it is. That’s real sad to me. I’d like to think that these guys will still be out there wrasslin’ around in their old age, no matter how choreographed it is.

Well, I’ve got the NCAA wrestling championship DVRed and I’m all fired up to watch some wrestling, not wrasslin. I hear the heavyweights are going to be a real “battle royal” this year.

The Road

Good morning, y’all. Well, we were deluged by rains that apparently snuck up from behind on the Whiz O Meter. I’m guessing the rains were of the variety that can’t be seen by the monitors of the Whiz O Meter. You know, the monitors whose vantage point is buried deep within the bowels of the Channel 11 basement. The clouds must have been using that new fangled stealth technology that keeps things from showing up on radar.

I mean, not a mention of the possibility of rain, and we got a soaking. I think even the Union County early warning system gave us a call before the bad weather hit. Of course Union County’s situation is somewhat different than Channel 11’s. Union County’s operations are above ground, and they’re able to look out the window to see what the weather is doing. Seriously Channel 11, open a window, look outside and see what’s going on. Otherwise, pay some folks around the state to give you a call when the weather changes.

It makes one wonder if we get so wrapped up in what we think our technology is capable of doing, that we lose sight of the practical things that need to be done. Being a big fan of science fiction, I am always looking at the latest achievements with an eye for their future impact. I honestly don’t think Skynet could take place, but, I don’t discount the idea that something we invent for one purpose could go horribly wrong and produce an unintended consequence.

Something going horribly awry is the setting for a book I just finished, “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy. I love books like this, and I’ve heard the movie is just as good. I’m not sure I’ll be able to work it into the Date night schedule, but I may try. I’m not sure that the movie could capture the overwhelming despair of the book. Which, if it does, is not a good theme for a Date night. Maybe I’ll just cue it up for a “Home Alone” session.

Being alone is the central theme of “The Road”. A father and son are trying to survive in a postapocalyptic world. We don’t know if the world has been destroyed by a nuclear war, or an asteroid falling to Earth. We do know that the world is in a nuclear winter setting and that even the snow is gray. The world is a very cold place that no longer supports life of any kind. The survivors are left to their own devices for food, and most turn to cannibalism as a means of survival. The father and son have a gun to defend themselves with, or, to take their own lives if they are beset by cannibals. Oh, and to make matters worse, the Dad is dying from some sort of lung ailment he has developed. Now for the bad news….

The Dad is trying to get the son to the coast before he, the Dad, dies. It’s unclear how the son is supposed to survive better at the beach, but that’s the plan. The “road” is the path that father and son take to arrive at the sea. Along the way they have a few happy moments, but for the most part, it’s just one horror scene after another. One of the happy moments was when they found a farm house that had cans of food. For a little while, the pair are able to relax and enjoy a couple of days of “normalcy”, before setting off again for the sea.

Eventually they reach their objective, and the Dad dies after he achieves his goal of delivering his son to the beach. The son is collected by a family who promises they’re “good guys” and the book ends. When you finish the book you just want to drag a lawn chair into the sun and strip down to your shorts, sunblock be damned. The overwhelming imagery of an ashen sky permeated my thoughts for about a day and I marveled at the brilliance of Cormac McCarthy.

McCarthy is 83 now and was 73 when he wrote “The Road”. At the rate I’m going, I’ll be lucky to be able to write a rental receipt when I’m 73. I need to find out Cormac’s regimen. Clearly he’s got a handle on this aging thing.

“The Road”, it is one of the choices best taken.

Driving Me Insane

Another gorgeous day here in the mountains. It would be hard to ask for nicer days. It is starting to warm up a bit, but it hasn’t reached my 85 degree cutoff yet. It is my general practice to not work outside after the temperatures reach the mid-eighties. I don’t look good in a hospital gown, and that would only be if the heat stroke didn’t kill me outright. Know your limits, I always say.

There is stuff to do once the heat gets out of my comfort zone. Today I went into town to the Home Depot and went shopping for some necessaries. I loaded up on weed and feed and cypress mulch. The mulch was on sale and the weed and feed was overpriced, so I guess we struck a balance by the time it was all over.

I like the way Home Depot employs their people as greeters when they’re not otherwise occupied. It is a sometimes thing, but it’s a nice touch to have someone near the front door that can tell you that chain link fencing is in aisle 11, or wherever. Without the greeter, you’re left to wander the acres of items until you happen to find what you’re looking for. I know sometimes I’ll wander so much that I suffer sensory overload from all of the stuff that I think I might need someday. Sometimes I get so overloaded with possibilities that I forget my original purpose. I’ve also been known to be standing five feet from my objective and have to ask where what I’m looking for is. Fortunately, I’ve never had a Home Depot employee act “put out” at pointing out the obvious to me. That’s a good thing. I’m generally already put out myself because I’ve had to drive to town to buy a part or tool to fix something that some nitwit broke.

If a Home Depot employee treated me discourteously I would probably lose it. Funny thing, I was already miffed when I came in the store today because some conehead had parked his truck across three parking spots. It was a good looking truck, and deserved to be protected from nicks and dings, but, the owner could have parked further from the store and not have had to worry. Instead, he somehow found three spaces close to the store, and parked across them. Some people have no social awareness it seems.

For example, there was this fellow that was talking on his cell phone at the top of his lungs while I was trying to ask the Home Depot associate if the mulch was going to still be on sale this weekend. This guy was yammering on and on about some big barbecue they were planning. I couldn’t tell if the guy was deaf, or if the person he was talking to was. Either way, me and the rest of Home Depot didn’t need to know how many people were coming, if they needed to serve beef and chicken or pork and chicken, if paper plates would be alright or if they needed to use Chinet. At least he didn’t try to speak over me to get his question answered. I believe there would have been a “clean up on aisle 4” if that had happened.

Anyway, I got what I was after and drove around to the pickup area to get my mulch. Lo and behold, there’s big mouth cell phone guy in his fine looking truck that requires three spaces to park. He was loading up on charcoal and enough preformed rock to make a monstrous fire pit. He finally got loaded and I got my turn. It was quick and easy. Heading home, I caught up with loud mouth cell phone guy at the first light on Highway 515. Well, the light changes, and there we sit. Now, I’m not one to blow my horn, so I gave him a lot of slack. When I finally tooted my horn, the fellow looked up from whatever he was doing to be just quick enough to be the last one through the light. I guess he had some Angry Birds that needed killing.

Let me just say here that while I embrace new technology, I don’t think we’ve had the required generations of training sufficient to use some things responsibly. I’m thinking this old boy’s Momma would have smacked him across the back of the head for any number of the socially unacceptable things he’s done today. Fortunately, I no longer see it as my responsibility to train those who are in desperate need of a manners lesson. Life’s too short, and there’s too many idiots with guns.


I’m getting damage to my bedding plants, and it’s not a gopher. It’s coming from the chipmunks. I may have to go “old school” on Chip and Dale here before long.

While I was Googling “best way to kill chipmunks”, I was listening to WNCW out of Spindale, N.C. It is the most eclectic radio station you’d ever hope to listen to. The airwaves have to be just right to pick it up between the cracks in the mountains between here and the campus of the Isothermal College. It’s always available over the internet, if you can command control over a computer. Their programming is well worth the effort to find them if you can. WNCW seems to take the “Public Radio” thing real seriously, and they try to provide something for everybody. They do lean heavy towards Bluegrass, as you would surmise, but they also go to areas you wouldn’t imagine. They do a segment every Friday called, “Frank on Friday”, which is devoted to the works of Frank Zappa. You know, Frank Zappa, “Mothers of Invention”, father of Moon Unit and Dweezil. It is one of their most popular segments, which is wild when you consider the listeners are mostly of the hillbilly persuasion. You just never know.

Anyway, I was listening to WNCW while trying to figure out the best method for mayhem for Chip and his Dales. A song came on that struck a chord (ha ha), deep within. It was an instrumental, heavy guitar and bass, and sounded very familiar. I just couldn’t name it. Admittedly, with my advanced state of dementia, that occurs more and more now. This song was so familiar, though, I felt I had to know it. I waited for it to be announced after the five song play, and deduced that it was a song called, “Rumble” by Link Wray. The announcer went on to give some footnotes about Link Wray, how he was from Dunn, North Carolina, etc.

Well, now Chip and Dale were safe for a while. I dug into Link Wray and found out that he was the basis for all of the music that I worshiped as an early teen. It was his arrangement for “Ghost Riders In The Sky” that was the first instrumental I learned to play. Back in the day, our little garage band, the “V.I.P.s”, played surf music to make a little money and build a lot of ego. We followed the Ventures, Dick Dale, and The Beach Boys like they were the Second Coming. As soon as a new album came out, we set about dissecting the songs until we felt confident enough to unleash our efforts on the public. We’d replay a track on the record over and over until we transposed our parts. I swear I thought the grooves on the record would disappear before we would get the licks right.

One of my favorites, “Apache”, took a particularly long time to learn. Turns out, “Apache” was one of three songs with Native American themes that Link Wray wrote. The other two were called, “Comanche”, and “Shawnee”. Link, himself, was a Shawnee. Maybe his Native American roots were the reason that radio stations banned his most famous work, “Rumble”, from the airwaves. The song was written in 1958, and it was felt that hearing the song would cause urban gangs to riot. I’ll have to research to see if any other instrumental has been banned before or since, but none come to mind. Maybe being banned was just another area where Link Wray was ahead of his time. Being the first Native American with a hit record was another. “Rumble”  sold over a million copies when it was released in 1958.

Link Wray is credited with being the father of the power chord and distortion. His influence through out rock is legendary. Pete Townsend claims he would have never picked up a guitar had he not heard Link Wray play. I’ll put myself in that company. I just didn’t realize that Link Wray was the root of the tree, and that The Ventures, Dick Dale, and others were just the branches. My ignorance knows no bounds, but at least I’m willing to admit it. Not proud of it, but I am aware of it.

Get ready to “Rumble”.

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Doc Watson

I was listening to WNCW out of Spindale, and they were doing a Doc Watson special. You really can’t think of Doc Watson too much without thinking of his son Merle and their relationship. I guess that got the whole “father and son” thing going, and me longing for something better than I had. Where would we all be now if my Daddy and I had been able to work together on something positive like Doc and Merle did? Certainly not where we are today.

It is easy for me to romanticize the Watson’s lives as being charmed, even though Doc was blind and Merle died at the age of thirty six. Arthel, or “Doc” as he would later become, lost his sight before his first birthday. He attended North Carolina’s school for the visually impaired and grew up on a farm outside of Deep Gap, North Carolina. He used his first earnings to buy a cheap guitar from Sears, which he learned to be proficient enough on to busk on street corners with his brother. Doc had “skills” as they say, and proceeded to become one of the best flatpickers of all time. Displaying a great diversity, Doc taught himself songs that were traditionally fiddle tunes to play on his electric guitar. He played piano and the banjo, and often accompanied himself on a harmonica while he sang. Doc could do it all musically, and passed it down to his son Eddy Merle.

Merle, was named after Doc’s two favorite singers, Eddy Arnold and Merle Haggard. Doc’s son Merle played on Doc’s first solo album, recorded in 1964 when Merle was just fifteen. Doc and Merle added a bass guitarist and began playing as a trio in 1974. The “Watson” trio toured around the world during the late seventies and early eighties. During this time they recorded fifteen albums and brought their unique style of country bluegrass folk acoustic music to millions of fans. In 1985, Merle died in a tractor accident on his family farm. The details of Merle’s death are like one of those insurance commercials were they portray a chain of events that seem implausible when held up separately. The gruesome details can be found here.

Two years after Merle’s death, “Merle Fest” was inaugurated by Doc in remembrance of his son. It is a country bluegrass folk alternative music extravaganza held each year at the Wilkes County Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina. Last year’s attendance was over 70,000 fans even though both of the headliners are now gone. It is an amazing legacy to a father son team of fabulous musicians. Through the miracle of YouTube, we can experience Doc and Merle together again doing Doc’s most famous hit, “Tennessee Stud”. That’s Merle on the other acoustic guitar.

I’m Not A Weatherman, But

Good morning, y’all. Another fine day in the mountains, but the temps are starting to rise. There doesn’t appear to be any rain forecast for the coming week. I’ll have to double check that. I can probably look at the weather map for Houston and New Orleans and do a better job of predicting the weather than the Whiz O Meter at Channel 11.

I guess they have to justify the costs of all of their expensive equipment by actually using it.

It seems to me it would be easier for the folks at Channel 11 to just call a cousin in Birmingham and ask them to look out the window. Add three or four hours to Birmingham’s current conditions and you’ve got Atlanta’s forecast.

Look out the window in Atlanta and you’ve got the current conditions. There you have it, weather forecasting done on a budget.

Why can’t Channel 11 get it right with all of the expensive equipment they use?

So sad, so sad.

Biblical Floods

Gorgeous weather yet again. I’ve noticed a little parching of the bedding plants, but not enough to get alarmed about. If we don’t get a rain in the next few days I’ll need to turn the sprinkler on, but until then, we’ll just thank our lucky stars for the wonderful weather.

We have been so much more fortunate this Spring than folks to the West or South of us. I can’t imagine the amount of rain that they’ve had in Houston this year. Calling all of the animals together two by two would be considered a good idea if you lived in the Houston area.

Biblical floods are not something we worry too much about here in the foothills of the Appalachians. After all, we are on high ground here, for the most part.

There have been problems to the North of us, like in the valleys of West Virginia, for example. Runoff from the West Virginia hills has flooded whole towns in some parts of the area.

Fortunately, that only occurs during a hundred or five hundred year flood, like we’ve been having every couple of years. Eventually, even the most diehard climate denier will have to own up to the fact that things are just not right anymore.

Hopefully, it will be sooner than later.