It’s Wildflower Season!

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This is a field of bluebonnets. The bluebonnets are the first flowers to bloom. They’ve been blooming for about two weeks and are everywhere, cow pastures, wheat fields, bar ditches and people’s front lawns in town. Now, the rest of the dozen or so species of flowers are starting to pop. They are orange and yellow and blue and violet and maroon and white. It is as though the Disney studio came in to film a movie and did this in preparation. It is spectacular and I invite any and all to come visit in the next six to eight weeks. Don’t forget the camera and some extra breath, because it will be taken away the first time you see it. It seriously looks unreal, it is so beautiful. I’ll try to update as the other colored flowers fill the fields.

As I said, it’s here, wish you were beautiful, or something like that. How does it go?

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Pecan Grove

I have to tell you about the Pecan Grove. It’s an old Sinclair gas station from the 50’s that is a classic museum piece, now with new owners who have resurrected this beer joint. They haven’t sold gas in more than twenty years, but it is a charming old western bar with tons of character and history.  It was once owned by old man Segner, who would work in the garage and tell his patrons to get their own beer and put the money in the till. More interesting than that are the current patrons, who spew stories of local history that will blow your mind. Like the story of the hanging tree. My friend Cody tells about his forefathers during the Civil War who questioned every stranger who entered the area. They would ask, “Are you blue or grey?” No matter how they answered, they would hang the stranger, because the locals just could not deal with strangers. Over thirty men were hung.

Not that unusual. Folks back then did not trust anyone they did not know. Hanging the strangers from a tree (which still exists) was an easy solution to the threat. I’ve had discussions with locals about existentialism, time travel and UFO’s. Call them rednecks if you will, but they may just be smarter than you. Not smarter than me, of course, but always interesting.

The new owners have resurrected this museum with great success. They have a vast menu that consists of a hamburger or cheeseburger and nothing else, only available on Friday or Saturday. Somehow, that adds to the charm. I’d love to take you there and buy you a beer. You pay for your own burger. They have a large outdoor area that includes washer pits (similar to horseshoes), fire pits for when it’s cold, and a motorcycle museum. I mean, what more could you ask for an old redneck cowboy bar? I give it five Texas lone stars.

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Pickup for Sale

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Ford Pickup For Sale

Good condition; starts most every time, no key but you can start it with a pocket knife. The tires are bald, but they hold air, or did last year. She only uses a quart of oil very few hundred miles. The windshield is cracked, but only on the passenger side.The lights don’t work, but not many folks drive at night. The passenger door don’t stay closed, but I got a rope. Accepting offers. Serious inquiries only. Bring a battery with you.

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RFD, Texas

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I painted this watercolor nearly twenty years ago, when I first arrived in Fredericksburg. It’s not very large, and took just an hour or so to paint, but is still one of my favorites. It expresses the feeling of open space that you don’t experience in the Northwest.

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Ain’t Nuthin in Texas That Growed What Don’t Got Thorns On It

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It’s hard to see, but the bush in front with the two inch thorns and tiny green leaves is called the Thornbush, or the Crown of Christ. Go figure. Behind that is the Prickly Pear cactus with inch and a half thorns every inch. Behind that is a creosote bush, I think. It’s got needle-sharp, half inch thorns every half inch that make a rose bush look like an Easter Lilly. Behind all that is razor grass and cockle burrs. Not to mention the barb wire fence, this is one hundred feet from my front door, with fire ants in between. Rattlesnakes and tarantulas are a given.

The good news is that on this side of the barb wire is wild grass, a gravel road and shotguns.

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That Green Alien Thing

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It came out of the sky, landed just a little south of Moline.

Jody fell out of the tractor, couldn’t believe what he seen.

“It Came Out of The Sky” Creedence Clearwater Revival

Then it landed just a little south of Fredericksburg. I built my first electric trike in 2000. It had a 500 watt motor and a top speed of 14mph, on a good day. Until tonight I’ve only driven this thing less than one mile. I finished the thing last month, just as I was moving to Texas. I no sooner got it together and working, then had to take it apart to ship to Texas.

I got the thing back together the other day and drove it another half mile, but tonight I took it out and drove down the back country road to watch the sunset. Oh my God! No, I’m too old to OMG, so, deal with it. This thing shot up to 35mph and was still pulling hard when I chickened and backed off. It’s still a bit twitchy because it needs a front end alignment and has high over-steer (it wants to go into the ditch). I think it will do 45mph or more. That’s too fast for this guy, but up to 25 or 30mph, this thing is a blast. The Alien Electric Trike.

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Hill Country Blues

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Can you find the seven rattlesnakes in this photo?

Ain’t nothin’ what growed in Texas that don’t got thorns on it or want to bring harm to you. Cockle burs, razor grass, prickly pear, thornbush (that says it all),with thorns two inches long, and a hunnert others. The Injins follered the deer trails to avoid the pointed threats. Them first Americans movin’ west follered the Injin trails. Then more wagons came and made it a road. So, our roads and highways were all originally laid out by deer and Native Americans, as it should be.

Today was perfect here. 72 degree high, sunny all day with a light breeze. Yeah, I’m kinda bragging, but we’ll soon get weather that can be freaky scary. I’ll keep Y’alls posted. You see; y’all means you. Y’alls means more than one y’all. Got it?

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The Neighbor’s Truck

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My neighbor has his truck for sale. He says he lost the key but you can start it with your pocket knife. The tires are near bald, but they still hold air if you pump them up, or at least they did a few years ago. Ain’t no hood, but it helps with the cooling. No windshield, but that also helps with the cooling, and no need for wipers. The seat’s a bit chewed up by the mice and rats, but a burlap sack covers it right up. It burns a little oil, but only about a quart every couple hundred miles. The dents don’t get in the way of the wheels turning or the doors closing, except for the driver’s door, but a hunk of rope takes care of that, and you can climb in the passenger side. It don’t need no paint. That’s a patina. Don’t touch it and it’ll last another hundred years. It’ll start nearly every other time, if you have a battery, and go for ten miles or more, if it ain’t too hot. The pickup bed is around back, if you want that, too. There’s no title, but you don’t need no title out here, and no plates. So, money saved is money you can spend on beer. Oh, sorry.

Sounds pretty good to me. What do you think I should offer? He seemed like a pretty shrewd character for a desert prospector and professional alcoholic.

Such is life here in the South. Somewhere, this story is true; probably more than once! At least the photos are real and taken by me. I hope my followers will enjoy my continuing adventures with just a tiny bit of artistic license and slight bits of imagination, I mean, exaggeration, or just plain foolishness.

So, if you’ve read this far and had a few chuckles, please share this with your friends. I’d really like to keep you and your friends chuckling and laughing and giving you something fun/funny to share with more friends. It may seem strange that I have German heritage on both sides of my family and like to talk about the life in  the southwest, but let me assure you, I have many ways to make you laugh, if you will cooperate! Oh, sorry.

Next post: How to make armadillo taste like chicken.

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The History and Proper Use of The Corn Cob

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Everone loves corn on the cob, and corn cobs have existed ever since. They was white corn, Injin corn, yeller corn, sweet corn, butter corn an such, them all had a cob. Now folks lernt to save them cobs since before the beginnin’ ’cause they had another use. Iffin yer still wunderin what I’m talkin’ about yet, yer a plum idjit. You’d let them cobs dry out then put them in the outhouse, fer when you need ‘um.

A thousand years before the Sears and Roebuck catalog, the corn cob was the preferred method. There was dry leaves, and dry grass, and tree bark and not much else. The Real Human Beings, as the Sioux Native Americans called themselves, used a deer skin, and rinsed it after each use. Kind of like the handkerchief you blow a booger into, but don’t wash it, then use it again. Admittedly, I live in Texas, and they do that here, but I digress.

You’ll notice that most animals don’t eat corn on the cob, ceptin deer, what eat it raw, an thay dun’t save the cobs. Animals know they perfec diet and don’t need no corn cob or any kinda clean up, ceptin yer dog lickin’ his butt, or skidding across the living room carpet ’cause you fed him cold pizza. Now, we all know about drive-through Mexican food. Nuff said, okay? Kinda the opposite of a perfec diet.

The proper use of the corn cob: Well, I’m gonna just allow y’all to take a moment and imagine, so’s I don’t got’s to get graphic. Pause a moment . . . let’s move on. Just short of being a wood rasp an more like coarse sandpaper, the corn cob fell way to the Sears and Roebuck catalog around 1909, quite the opposite of the chafing cob, the pages of the annual catalog were more like wax paper, a quite in-effective cleaning device. The first one hundred and fifty years of this country’s heritage is wrapped up in corn cobs, at least, out west.

Them Europeens an them folks in New York city, an the east coast was usin’ linin an such, an wimmins always knowed stuff the men never knowed. An still, everone stunk to high heaven, not just from the improper use of the corn cob, but from sweat, bad breath infrequent bathin’ and the vapors. So, attendin’ the Sunday church social in August could be a near unbearable adventure. Many small paper manufacturers tried to offer a paper product as the new alternative, placing rolls in hotels across America, and slowly, we saw the light. No one person or manufacturer can lay claim to the modern comfort we enjoy, but many scrambled to find relief from the wood rasp like effect of the corn cob.

I have personal experience in this area, havin’ visited the relatives on the farm in North Dakota in 1954. Running water was someone runnin’ with a bucket o’ water, an the Friday night bath was an ordeal for a family with six kids and a wood fired stove for hot water and the pump is outside by the horse trough. This is a true story. I got nekkid with six o’ my cousins an we splashed an giggled in a cast iron claw-foot  bathtub in the winter of 54. I remember Eisenhower and the Republican convention in black and white, with Chet Huntley and David Brinkley. I was six years old. It was cold that night and the only relief was ten yards from the back door to the outhouse, where the little stack of corn cobs awaited my eventual arrival.

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Finally Found Home

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They pulled her in today and set it up on cinder blocks, my new home. My pride and joy! I got the corrugated tin awning set up an weer good to go. My competition beer drinkin’ nabers come over an challenged me but I gotta kill the rats before anything else. I gotta sleep without the gnawing an chewing an all that. Ol’ Filbert is keepin the vermits at bay. I got him a red neckerchief scarf. He’s a handsome cat.

Did I say 2009 RV? I meant 1909. That’s a very rare and not collectable 1909, horse drawn, Magellan 39 foot Conquistador. Ask my friend, Phil to spell that. Anyways, the goats are comin in tomorrow to mow the grass and I’ll keep you updated on the fire ant advance.

It’s Friday, November 17th, and I’m still working on my tan. How is that moss and mold thing working this pneumonia season? You got mold. We got fire ants and rattlesnakes. If it ain’t on thing, it’s another.

Did you see that super moon? Boy Howdy!

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