Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Tomorrow is too late

Stan Sullivan was a friend of mine. We were stationed in the UK together during the Gulf War. After he retired from the Air Force in 1992 and I moved back to Texas, we eventually lost touch with each other. For the past couple of years I've been looking for Stan, wanting to re-connect, to get back together, share a few puns (he loved coming up with new ones), but he hated computers and technology, which made him hard to find.

Until it was too late.

I found out today that Stanton A. Sullivan died in 2007. I don't know how it happened -- car accident, health issues -- but he was only 54, and I was 10 years too late to renew a friendship that once meant a lot to me.

If you have an old friend you haven't spoken to in years, today would be a great time to get back in touch. Maybe you can call them, write, or meet each other at Whataburger and enjoy a bit of catch up with your fries.


Saturday, December 16, 2017

All I want for Christmas is a tumbleweed

I wrote this little verse several years ago with the hope of convincing my wife we needed a tumbleweed for a Christmas Tree.

I'm still hoping.

O Christmas Tumbleweed, O Christmas Tumbleweed,
your dried-up twigs are okie-doke.
O Christmas Tumbleweed, O Christmas Tumbleweed,
your dried-up twigs are okie-doke.

We rolled you in without a doubt,
When Christmas's done, we'll roll you out.

O Christmas Tumbleweed, O Christmas Tumbleweed,
your dried-up twigs are okie-doke.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

If you can't smile, fake it

I'm sure historians will look back at our time and ask,
"What they hell were they thinking?
Were they all fast asleep, or stoned out on crack,
or maybe passed out from their drinking

five shots and three beers every night wouldn't do it,
they'd have to drink gallons and gallons.
Or maybe a plague of good old fashion stupid
made all of them just throw the towel in."

Not all of us, sir, of that you can take
to the bank, if you get my expression.
For some of us fought back with knuckles and words,
and how dare you even bring up the question

of our integrity, our honor, our love for our brothers,
our knowing what's good from what's evil.
But I will admit it looks bad on the face of it;
barkeep, set us up with more refills

while I bury my face in my hands at the thought
of our progeny questioning our marbles.
"Did they have some? Who cares, they're all dead. How 'bout pizza?"
And the world moves on. It's a marvel.

Just fine

Monday, December 11, 2017

Don't just sit, learn to knit

Adventures come in all sizes, shapes, and colors. Some are short and slow, others long and fast. Some go around the world, and some stay right at home with a pair of sticks and some string trying to make useful stuff.

Ok. Yes. I'm learning to knit. So what. It's my adventure.

And as a beginner, here's the first thing I completed:

Knitted Cat Barf

Knitted Cat Barf.

Throw it down on the floor and watch the missus kick her favorite feline right out the door.

(It happened like this: I was navigating my way around knittery and accidentally dropped this abomination on the living room floor. Later that night, my wife came across it and her first thought was the cat had barfed up on the carpet again. Boy, was she surprised when she took a closer look. We both shared a good chuckle.)

That's right! KNITTED CAT BARF. Order yours today and I'm pert near positive it will get to your house sometime before it's supposed to.

The next thing I created will be useful on Talk Like A Pirate Day:

Knitted Pirate Eye Patch

Knitted Pirate Eye Patch.

All the cool kids are shunning them for some reason.

Anyway, those are my introductory knitting pieces. And who knows? Maybe I'll keep at it and make MORE useful stuff.

Anything's possible.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Thursday, December 7, 2017

New haiku

The moon is lovely
super or just old Clark Kent
wearing suit and tie.

*   *   *

Another Sunday
morning run to sponge away
Saturday's buffet.

*   *   *

I spend my daylight
not saving time but using
the hell out of it.

*   *   *

Only an hour?
I say we set back our clocks
to Obama time.

*   *   *

Out Harvest-mooning
like a little child, giddy
to see miracles.


Harvest moon

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Haiku Sampler

Venus, Morning Star,
pulling old sun out of bed
to begin the day.

*   *   *

Step One: Dig a trench.
Step Two: Bury your burdens.
Step Three: Carry on.

*   *   *

Taking the "right path"
cheats you out of the joy of
being lost then found.

*   *   *

I think, therefore I
fret on things I can not change.
Hard work clears my mind.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Just another 5K

My daughter and I decided we were going to do a local 5K run, but couldn't afford the $60 entry fee. (It never occurred to me that people paid money to be miserable), so instead, we decided to run around the block.

Well, I decided.

I've been training for 11 weeks to do a 5K, and by golly I wasn't going to let a little bit of lack of cash stand in my way. So....

5K

This is us before we headed out on the Inaugural "Grab A Friend And Run Around The Block 5K This Is Fun? Run." We didn't take an "after" photo, of course, but I fixed pancakes. That was the "fun" part, I assume.

Join us next year, the 2nd Saturday in October, rain or shine. Post photos somewhere. Eat pancakes. Moan for the rest of the day.

It's all free!


Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Driving Bus No. 6

I've been driving Bus No. 6 for almost 17 years. It's not my main job, it's just what I do in the morning to get me warmed up for a full day of teaching and how I let off steam in the afternoon so I don't go home and kick a cat.

My wife hates it when I even THINK about kicking the cats.

I kind of enjoy driving my bus. The students are really not all that bad, I have a pretty route, and the extra money keeps my family eating more than just beans on toast. Of course, I realize that it's not for everyone -- most people hate the idea of driving a bus because of how it's portrayed on TV and in the movies, or how assaults are caught on security cameras and beamed right into your living room via the nightly news just when you're starting to enjoy your evening beef and potatoes TV dinner, complete with the pert near homemade apple strudel on the side -- but it suits me just fine.

I've been driving my route for so long now, I've created names for different "points of interest" along my journey (mostly because I can't remember the street numbers). Let me describe it for you:

First, I drive my bus through the Eye of the Needle, and whether I survive or not, I end up at the Purley Gates. I take the Short Cut to the Castle, turn around and go through The Spooky Woods, over to the Goat Farm, back through The Cow Pasture and head up the road to the Loveliest House on the Hill. From there I zig zag through Tornado Alley, drive through the Rabbit's Den, turn right at the Tree In The Middle of the Road (which isn't there anymore because it died), go past the Horse Ranch, down Blind Man's Alley, take a left through the White Fences, past the cemetery, go for a ride on Dead Man's Rollercoaster, which takes me back to the main highway. I turn around at McCurdy's Catfish and Burgers, turn right into Pelican Bay, and if I make it through there alive, pick up my last riders on Liberty Lane and head north back through The Eye of the Needle.

I pass by four cemeteries, go through a working cow pasture, get to see peacocks, dairy cows, deer, wild boars, rabbits, squirrels, raccoons, vultures, an occasional donkey in the road, and I even think I saw a young bald eagle once, but it was hard to tell because I was driving a bus.

One time (and I swear this is true),  a herd of cows were lined up at the cattle guard blocking the entrance to The Cow Pasture, just daring me to cross. It looked like a football defensive line, except they weren't wearing helmets or jerseys. Of course I was bigger, and yellow, so they had to move. But I'll let you know they pooped enough poop on the road that teachers at the school commented about smelling my bus five miles before I even got to the school.

"Boy, we could smell you coming!"

"Cow pasture."

"Really?" said sarcastically.

"Would I lie to you?"

Of course, the Loveliest House on the Hill makes the whole trip worth it. It's not the biggest, or fanciest, or even the loveliest house in the world, but when you're on that hill in the winter, and the sun is just coming up, and they have their curtains open so you can see the warm glow of their lamps lighting up every room in the house, you just know they would invite you in for a cup of hot coffee, if you weren't driving a bus, on a schedule to get your riders to school.

Whenever I retire from driving the bus, I'm going to knock on their door one early winter morning, and I know they'll be glad I stopped by.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Friday, September 22, 2017

Friday Haiku just for you

I'm a round Earther
not some billionaire birther
who talks big but ain't.

*   *   *

Friday coffee cup
ready for a second round
technical top off.

*   *   *

I used to have goats.
There are some days I miss them,
but most days I don'ts.

*   *   *

Good morning, glory
is in the beholder's eye,
and I'm beholding.

Morning Glories

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Shopping cart food snobbery

I'm sure when people look at my early Saturday morning Walmart shopping cart full of fruits and vegetables and products from Asia and India with names that begin with Q and Z, they're thinking, "My God, man, how can you live without frozen sausage biscuits and a 12-pack carton of soda pop?"

At the same time they're having their thoughts, I'm thinking, "My God, man, couldn't you've bought a real pineapple instead of that canned chopped-up syrupy stuff with artificial coloring and factory-induced aftertaste?"

Shopping cart food snobbery, hurled in both directions.

"And what is this?" the cashier asks.

"It's Bok Choy."

"Hmmmm. And what's it good for?"

The shopper in line behind me looks to see what the commotion's about.

"Tonight, it'll go into a nice soup, with tumeric and Shitake mushrooms," I reply.

"Shitake. Oh, that's how you pronounce it?"

The bored shopper loses interest and grabs a candy bar from the shelf. His cart is full of sodas and chips and frozen pizza and tubes of ground beef and maple syrup for his boxes of frozen waffles.

Yes, I feel superior with my grapes and quinoa while others are toting around boxed cookies and fake juice drinks. How can they eat like that? And why? Is it too much trouble to chop up an onion and bell peppers, boil a pot of rice and serve it all up with broccoli and tofu? America is the land of the buy one get one free and home of the bravely obese, but does it have to be?

Another shopper enters my line but decides to head off to another register. My purchases are taking time.

Boxes, cans and cartons of packaged food-like stuff are easy to ring up at the cash register. Just slide the bar code across the scanner and away you go. Vegetables and fruits, on the other hand, have to be inspected, counted, and weighed, their product numbers sometimes punched in by hand, which seems to me quite fitting seeing that they were picked, inspected, counted and weighed by hand before they were shipped to the store for me to purchase.

"So, what ya going to do with that stuff?" the shopper behind me asks, pointing at a head of Napa cabbage.

"Gonna make some kimchi," I reply. "It's good for the gut. They eat a lot of it in Korea."

He turns to his wife and I hear him say, "Damn Democrat holding up the line. Look and see if there's another one open."

Luckily the cashier is ringing up my last item. It's in a brown paper bag to keep it cool. She looks in the bag then looks up with a smile that says, "Your secret is safe with me."

I hang my head in embarrassment. Inside the bag is a pint of Ben & Jerry's Chocolate Fudge Brownie ice cream.

"It's for a friend," I say.

"Sure, honey," is her reply. "Sure it is."

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

When smart phones go bad

I can remember the day I brought home my first cell phone. I cradled the 9-pounder as if its life depended on it. I would have wrapped it in swaddling clothes, but it seemed perfectly happy in its faux-leather carrying bag, nestling adorably against its recharger and multi-language instruction manual.

Wanting to be the best cell phone "daddy" that ever graced the planet, I made sure its antennae was always fully extended, I gave it a full charge whenever it cried out for one, I wiped from its face any accumulated grime or fingerprints, and at bedtime, I laid it gingerly back in its bag and always told it goodnight. Looking down upon its sweet little smile changed my life, and I couldn't imagine how I had gotten along without it.

Time passed quickly, and before I knew it the little guy had changed into an adorably precocious little youngster. It still had its cowlick of an antennae, but it could run faster with more ease, its vocabulary  increased, it dabbled in photography, and it passed along messages as if it were born to it. I was so proud of it, even if it would never excel at playing T-ball, for throughout the ages, mankind has thrilled at the spectacle of sport, but has judged its own humanity by its art and intelligence.

Intelligence. Being clever. Smartness. These are the attributes we as a society honor, or should, more than any other. We pity the stupid man, the ignorant woman, the child who barely can write his own name. Somewhere along their paths, they took the wrong exits, were told that intelligence was overrated, that it was never good to be "too smart."

But not MY phone.

In the blink of an eye, my little cell buddy matured, lost its antennae, forgot all about its childish "flip open, flip closed" games we used to play, and transformed into the smart little thing we always wanted it to become. I was proud to admit that its intelligence far outshone my own. But unfortunately, it was smart enough to know it, became too smart for its britches, and, I'm embarrassed to reveal... turned smart aleck.

Soon we were arguing over the correct routes to take to dinner parties and baseball games. It couldn't focus on the photographs I so wanted to make. It dropped calls, failed to inform me of messages received, chimed out at inappropriate times as if to embarrass me for not giving it enough attention.

And then came the worst part.

In its most vindictive manner, right when I needed it most, it would shut down on me, blank out, screen off, as if it had reached its last charge when I knew full well its battery life had plenty more hours to run and chase the neighbor's goats.

Oh, the fights we had. The words that were spoken.

"Why are you doing this? Is it on purpose?"

"I hate you."

"And after all I've done for you."

"I'm shutting down."

"Oh, no you're not mister."

"Leave me alone."

And then the truth came out. It's little battery WAS bad. It never WAS on purpose. It was congenital, a defect, and nobody ever told me until it was too late.

Much too late.

I buried my little buddy just the other day in the backyard. I was so ashamed. How could I have been so cruel? How could I've not known? And how could I ever bring home another, knowing I'm not the kind of man I wanted to be?

But, as some old cowboy was fond of saying, "When you're bucked off one horse, the best thing to do is get on another."

And holy cow! This new little buddy of mine has more gigabyte space than all the Apollo rockets that were ever sent off into space.

Shoot, I can't wait for it to teach me how to play Parcheesi.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Hurricane Harvey and Mustang Island

I've only been to Mustang Island State Park once.

It's an 18-mile long barrier island down on the Texas Gulf Coast.

Padre Island is to the south. Port Aransas is just to the north. Well, what's left of it.

I remember riding into the park, parking my bike, and the ranger warning me that mosquitoes were bad that year. And she was more than right.

I camped behind the dunes, and those little buggers pert near drained me dry. A family next to me was having a good time, cooking food, playing; the husband running around without his shirt. They obviously had stronger Off than I had on.

Around midnight, I strolled out onto the beach. The moon was full, and a slight breeze was coming in from the Gulf. I found a place to put down my sleeping bag and slept the night away.

Mustang Island is now closed due to damage from Hurricane Harvey.

There's no telling when it'll open again.

Someday, I hope to go back.

Mustang Island

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Friday, August 18, 2017

From couch to triathlon

I don't know what I was thinking.

Well, yes I do. I read a story about someone overcoming insurmountable adversity -- someone with drive and determination -- to raise their body up and will it to compete in a triathlon. An accident had left this person partially paralyzed, but did that stop them? No sirree.

I was lying on the couch when I read the story.

The couch is my native habitat.

So, I got up, put on a hat, found some hiking shorts, donned a new pair of running shoes, and broke out with sweat just from doing all that.

The plan is (was) this:
  1. Do a 5K run
  2. Do a 20K bike ride
  3. Another 5K run
  4. Find a swimming pool to brush up on my swimming.
  5. Another run, another bike ride, then...
  6. Sprint Triathlon.
Like I said: I don't know what I was thinking.

Monday, August 14, 2017

A new Instagram account

Just for fun, I've begun a new Instagram account for some cartoons that I've drawn. You can find it at: The Farr Place.  

A post shared by Tracy Farr (@thefarrplace) on

My Haiku just for you

Wednesday Mockingbird
mock, mocking the barnyard cat
out stalking its lunch.

*  *  *

Virginia is for
lovers running hand in hand
to beat the Devil.

*  *  *

It's gonna be a
grey rainy slip drip spitting
wetful kind of day.

*  *  *

We were all searching
for the American dream,
but then we woke up.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

How I spent my Summer Vacation

How did I spend my summer vacation?

Sitting.

If sitting is the new cancer, I have three weeks left to live.

While I sat, I tried to learn French.

I watched all the French movies on Netflix, I followed French speakers on Twitter, I logged onto YouTube and watched French tutorials, and I read French news on French-speaking news sites.

I can't speak French.

After about a month of sitting, I decided to mow the yard -- sitting on a riding lawnmower.

I did pull some weeds and chop down some brush, but I doubt any of that extended my life one iota.

For some reason I came up with the notion to do a Triathlon.

I try never to run anywhere.

I haven't swam in about 30 years, but I'm sure it's just like riding a bike. Not mine. It's covered in cobwebs.

In a burst of enthusiasm and self determination, I bought a pair of running shoes and have started running around the block. Well, mostly walking. I run when the mood strikes.

I'm almost never in the mood.

The Triathlon is in April.

I'll probably be dead before then.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Erie Canal 200th Anniversary

In 2015, I rode my motorcycle along the Erie Canal thinking of low bridges, barges and a good old mule named Sal.

Men put shovel to dirt 200 years ago today to begin the Canal.

Happy 200th!


Erie Canal Lock No. 14

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Sun sets to the dance

of fireflies and cicadas
enjoying themselves.


Sunday, June 18, 2017

Some of my favorite 'Dad Jokes'

Dad Joke: A short witticism/pun told by a Dad (or uncle, grandfather, etc.) that makes the listener elicit an uncontrollable groan and wish they were anywhere else other than listening to the Dad Joke. The bigger the groan, the better the Dad Joke.

Here are some of my favorites:

1. When is a door not a door? When it's ajar.

2. What did the banana do when it lost its case? It a-peeled the verdict.

3. Where do you learn to make ice cream? Sundae School.

4. Which side of the chicken has the most feathers? The outside.

5. What's a pirate's favorite letter? You'd think it was R, but it's actually the C.

6. What's brown and sticky? A stick.

7. Why was the mushroom always invited to parties? Because he was a fungi.

8. Why do you never see elephants hiding in trees? Because they're so good at it.

9. Where did George Washington keeps his armies? In his sleevies.

10. What did the buffalo say when his son left for college? Bison.

11. What's green and red and goes 100 mph? A frog in a blender.

12. What does Count Dracula take for a sore throat? Coffin' drops.

13. Why didn't the teacher ask her class to add 144 to 144? It was two gross.

14. What do you call a boomerang that doesn't come back? A stick.

15. What do you call cheese that isn't yours? Nacho cheese.

16. Why did the old man fall into the well? He couldn't see that well.

17. What's bright orange and sounds like a parrot? A carrot.

18. What do you call a fake noodle? An impasta.

19. Why did the cowboy get a dachshund? Because he wanted to get a long, little doggy.

20.  I could tell you a joke about paper, but it's tearable.

Friday, May 26, 2017

A man who obsesses

over his weight has too much time on his hands and not enough goats in his yard.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Gazpacho in the making

I tried making Gazpacho the other day. You know, cold vegetable soup that the Spanish would eat on hot Spanish nights.

I have no doubt my Gazpacho bore no resemblance to theirs, but at least the makings looked purty.


Gazpacho in the making.

Monday, May 22, 2017

The Tale of Twitter-Dee and Twitter-Dope

Twitter-Dee and Twitter-Dope
were standing in a store,
when Twitter-Dee began to see
what Twitter-Dope had worn.

He had on purple shoes, his socks
a slimy shade of green,
that stretched and stretched right up his legs
beyond his knobby knees.

His knickers were too short,
his yellow shirt a size too small,
a feather hat upon his head
was 15 stories tall.

Said Twitter-Dee, “Just stand right there
I want to take your photo,
and send it all around the world,
from Leningrad to Fargo.

“You’ll be a viral superstar,
of that there is no doubt,
and everywhere you go your fans
will scream and clap and shout.”

So Twitter-Dope produced a smile
and posed without distraction,
and Twitter-Dee sent out the post
and waited for reaction.

They waited long, and longer still,
their wait was hard to take,
and weeks turned into years. How Long?
It’s hard to speculate.

Then one day Twitter-Dee and Dope
of old age they did die,
their viral superstardom had been
one big Twitter lie.

But to their friends and neighbors,
and to all I do declare
that Twitter-Dee and Twitter-Dope
were stars beyond compare.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Not a good day Haiku

It's a mad, mad, mad
mad
mad
mad
mad
mad
mad
mad 
mad, mad, mad, mad world!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

What do I do? There's a dent in my trombone slide.

This was one of my very first cartoons, and one of my favorites.

As a trombone player, I have dealt with many a dented slide. I've even tried to put as much slide oil as I had to "cover up" the evil dent just so I could play a little bit longer -- but to no avail.

The only solution?

Pack up the trombone, give it to a passing gypsy, and learn how to play dominoes.

  The Trombone Slide

Monday, May 15, 2017

Weight loss a la mode

I need to lose 30 pounds by two weeks from next Thursday. There's nothing special about that day -- no weddings or funerals that I know of -- I just wanted to give myself a goal, like foregoing banana splits for a...

Three scoops. Chocolate, covered in marshmallow; vanilla, covered with chocolate syrup; strawberry, covered with some kind of strawberry mixture; nuts, whip cream and a cherry on top of a perfectly healthy banana.

Americans don't eat enough fruits, like bananas, cherries and strawberries. I doubt 47 percent of the population even know where the produce section is in their local Walmart. Our produce section is in the north corner of the building, right past the...

Bakery department with their homemade bread, decorated cakes, donuts, pies, and more bread, and cupcakes, cookies, more donuts, and across the way, the refrigerated pizza section -- thick crust, thin crust, deep crust, Chicago crust, hamburger, sausage, Canadian bacon, cheese, double cheese, triple cheese, and a couple of Gluten-free pizzas I wouldn't touch with a pole.

I guess this means I also have to exercise a bit more than my hourly jaunt between the couch and the refrigerator, looking for something sweet to eat, but settling on crackers covered with butter and sugar.

It's a lifestyle thing you have to change, I know.

Eat less, exercise more.
Lose some weight,
so you can get through the door.

But trading in a lifetime of bad habits for exercise and kale sandwiches...

On toasted pumpernickel, honey-roasted turkey, pepper jack cheese, mayo, slices of onions, peppers, maybe some olives, with a heathy helping of chips, a pickle spear, jumbo Coke-a-Cola and a slice of Key Lime Pie.

This is going to be harder than I thought.


Friday, May 12, 2017

My Haiku mix tape

The yard needs mowing
I keep saying to myself,
but I don't listen.

*  *  *

This severe weather
is right up our Tornado
Alley, so to speak.

*  *  *

Beans, rice and cornbread.
If they aren't served in heaven,
then I ain't going.

*  *  *

Venus, Morning Star,
and me, a two-bit actor,
watching the world turn.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Monday, May 8, 2017

As should we all

I think something bit me last night. On the hand. It really itches like a mosquito bite, but the itch has lasted for several hours now and that's unusual for me.

Maybe I got into some poison ivy yesterday when I was out doing yard work. But I was wearing gloves.

Or maybe a bug from another dimension is eating its way into ours through my hand and any moment now some alien doodle bug is going to pop out of my skin that only Sigourney Weaver will be able to stop -- depending on residuals, sequel opportunities and a percentage of merchandising.

*   *   *

I'm writing this at 7 a.m. There's 21% battery left on my laptop, and, strangely enough, 21% left on my iPhone battery.

Coincidence? Possibly.

A sign of impending doom and destruction? The jury's still out.

But seeing that their battery lives are more than 75% used up, and MY life is probably 75% used up (depending on whether or not I forget to take the trash out again in the near future), I theorize that this universe may indeed be some kind of digital Alien-Nintendo simulation, and we are nothing more than pixels hopping about for the pleasure of a more-intelligent creature who's so addicted to the game he has to play it in secret because his wife thinks it's a waste of time, "and if you forget to vaporize the trash again this week, I'll vaporize your little game, bucko."

And we'd all be toast.

*   *   *

Somewhere in the neighborhood there's a truck backing up. How do I know this? Because it's "beep-beep-beep" beeping backup beepers are driving me the beep crazy.

I think it started around 6 a.m. And you tell me how someone can be backing up for an hour and...

Wait a minute. There's more than one of them. I can tell because one truck is beeping an E-flat, and the other is lower on a D-flat.

(Musician Geek-dom)

Funny, but the Mockingbird outside my window is whistling Rachmaninoff, another one is cooing on a G (as if he's about to warble out a "Swing Low" chorus), and some prop plane just flew over humming a low A.

And deep in the Perseus cluster of galaxies, 250 million light years from Earth, a supermassive black hole is pumping out a B-flat, a frequency 57 octaves lower than middle C.

It's a conspiracy, man. A conspiracy, I tell ya!

*   *   *

The morning sun is now coming through our front window.

I'm going to go pee, then have a cup of coffee.

Sooner or later I'll plug in all my electro-stuff so their batteries won't die.

I might do some yard work.

In the deep, icy ocean of Saturn's moon, Enceladus, an amoeba is back-stroking around a hydrothermal vent not worrying about life on other planets, alien invasions, taxes, religion, political instability, or whether or not his health insurance will be adequate in his old age.

He's naked, and enjoying just being alive.

As should we all.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

No great adventure...

Just a ride to the lake and back.

   To the lake and back

Friday, May 5, 2017

Funny how a cute little urge...

... for cheesecake can sneak up on you and won't go away until it's picked up.

Usually I comply.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Cool morning coffee

campfire coming back to life
coo the mourning doves.

#haiku

Monday, May 1, 2017

Like I was saying...

The cat just barfed right in the middle of the floor. Right in front of the door. As if that was the designated barfing zone and, "how dare you [me] look down at me [the cat] as if I was a throw-out-the-door object and not part of the family."

Ok, ok. I'm sorry I "tossed" you out the door a little more forcible than I should have but...

"Don't but me, mister. Your human children barfed on the floor all the time. The floor, the bed, all over the bathroom. And did you throw THEM out the door?"

I guess not.

"You guess not? What, was that a tricky question? Of course you didn't. They were a part of the family, just like I am. If you're going to throw out ANY cat, throw out that other one. She's a bitch."

Watch your language, ok?

"I just have a weak stomach. I can't help it if raw bird doesn't agree with me."

Well then, stop eating them.

"Easy for YOU to say. You eat such a variety of food -- King Ranch Casserole, Ramen Noodles, Lasagna, Sushi. And what am I stuck with? Little chunks of dried mystery nuggets. Seafood flavored, yes, but only flavored. Not the real thing."

If I fed you some fish, you'd choke on a bone.

"That's why you filet it for me. Steamed with a bit of lemon juice, covered with thyme, a portion of asparagus and thinly-sliced potatoes on the side. THAT, my friend, I wouldn't barf up for the world."

Sometimes I get the feeling you think you own the place.

"And a nice red wine. Lightly chilled. Chop chop, good man. I've got carousing to do."


Saturday, March 18, 2017

Monday, March 13, 2017

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Motorcycle haiku

"To ride or not to,"
should never be the question.
"Is my tank full?" is.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Where's all the snow?

I was just thinking back on Winter 2015, when I rode my bike to work and ended up snowbound for awhile.

Ah, now that was a PROPER winter!


2.25.15 Unintentionally Hard Core

Sunday, February 26, 2017

I'm not an intellectual,

a poet or a scribe.
I put my well worn jeans on
always one leg at a time.
My farts don't smell like cupcakes,
my breath is sometimes putrid,
my snoring could wake up the dead;
of that, you can't dispute it.
I wish with all my might I could be
highly more effectual,
but I am just your average guy,
and not an intellectual.





Thursday, February 23, 2017

I'm a cowboy,

on a steel horse I ride.
If I forget to take the trash out again,
I'll be wanted:
Dead or Alive.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Riding's not that hard;

it's like sitting on a chair
strapped to a rocket.

#haiku


Sunday, February 12, 2017

No poetry

It's hard to imagine
a real poet's imagination
can still evoke images poetic
during pathetic times
as these.

As for me?
I'm all out of poetry.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Thursday, February 9, 2017

If I was smarter,

and had money, I'd run for public office; maybe just for the office of Dog Catcher, but by God I'd treat those dogs right.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Let's get global!

Thanks to Muslim entrepreneurs several centuries ago, I'm enjoying my first cup of coffee of the day.

Coffee is the US's largest food import and second most valuable commodity after oil. Viva Columbia!

For lunch, I think I'll have a big bowl of Ramen. Arigatou Japan!

God bless imported Mexican Tequila and after-work Margaritas!

If it wasn't for Italian immigrants, I wouldn't be eating pizza tonight. "Immigrants. We get the job done."

And how did I observe the first day of the Chinese New Year? By drinking Columbian coffee made in a Chinese coffee maker while eating leftover Italian pizza.

Stand up for globalization!

It's cool!


Sunday, January 15, 2017

Let's take the weekend...

grab it by its scruffy neck
and show it who's boss.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

That time of day...

...dusk, when things start to settle down, coffee starts to perk up, and life doesn't seem half bad.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Lessons Learned

To be perfectly honest with you, I was texting and driving. I know, it’s a stupid thing to do, but I just couldn’t help myself.

The wife? Sure, she was in the passenger’s seat, reading a post or answering a text, but she wasn’t watching. So I slipped my phone out of my pocket, held it below the steering wheel, and didn’t see the road sign until it was too late.

“Beware: Loose Gravity.”

I’m really not a bad driver. I usually keep my eyes on the road, keep my distance from the car in front of me, slow down when it’s raining; but I felt my phone vibrate and couldn’t stand the thought of not knowing who it was or what they wanted me to know right that very instant.

It could’ve been my mother, texting me to say she’d fallen down again, but paramedics were on the way, “so don’t you worry your heart about me at all. I know you’re busy.”

It could’ve been one of my kids sending me a message about needing money to pay the rent, or, “Dad, I’m in jail, but I didn’t do it this time. Can you make bail?”

I just had to know.

Luckily, I was going full speed when I hit the loose gravity. We fishtailed a bit, but because of our momentum, we were only lifted off the pavement about two meters. We slammed down hard on the other side, though. The air bags popped on us, the car broke an axel, and my wife started screaming bloody murder wondering what’d just happened.

“You were texting, weren’t you? How could you? What would’ve happened to us if you’d been going slower and we actually got caught in all that loose gravity? Worse yet, what if you’d driven us smack into a black hole? You know how bad these roads are. Did you even think about that?”

Like I said, it was a stupid thing for me to do, but I’ve learned a valuable lesson: Never text and drive while my wife is in the car.


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Poetry bits and bobs

It's nice to sleep in and pull up the covers,
whether you're single or long-time lovers.

*  *  *

Dallas calls,
like New York,
but with an accent I'm more accustomed to.

*  *  *

The cat
     comes
            in
              with the
                     fog...
creeps quietly
         through
                the
                     room...

and barfs all over the floor.

*  *  *

One of these days,
Monday won't come 'round here no more,
but for now,
we're sitting at the table,
drinking coffee,
making plans.

*  *  *

THE END

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Thursday, January 5, 2017

It's my birthday!

I'm 55.

I was born in a snow storm.

I rode a train to Minnesota when I was 5, and GI Joe was in my nightmare.

I broke an arm once.

I learned to play trombone when I was in 7th grade.

I went to college.

I got married in 1985

I became a music teacher.

I joined the Air Force in 1986.

We live in England for three years.

I got out of the Air Force in 1991.

I had (well, WE had) three children.

I went back to teaching music.

I'm a damn good bus driver.

I've had three bus driving wrecks (they weren't my fault, I swear)

Sometimes I draw stuff.

Sometimes I write poetry.

Sometimes I write songs.

Sometimes I write short stories.

Sometimes I take photographs. With a real camera. Not a cheesy cellphone.

I learned how to cook.

I can speak a little Spanish.

I rode a motorcycle 19,000 miles across America in 2015 and lost a lot of weight.

I gained it all back.

I hardly do anything these days except sit, drink and get depressed over what I think are bad things that are happening in this world.

I can play the ukulele, the vehuela, a bit of violin, parts of two songs on the piano, some guitar, and the penny whistle.

I really like playing my penny whistle.

But I recently lost my penny whistle.

I have two banjos. I can play one of them.

I would really like to ride my motorcycle around the world, pilot a boat around The Great American Loop, hike the Pacific Crest, Continental Divide and Appalachian Trails, and learn how to play the bagpipes.

One day, when I have time to devote my energies to a dog, I'd like to have a dog.

I probably have 25 more years to live.

I guess I better get with it.

Adios

Sunday, January 1, 2017

My 2016 Haiku

Starting with the first haiku I wrote this year, and ending with the last one. Happy New Haiku Year!

I saw the Blackstar
dance in the sky through your eyes,
changing everything.

*  *  *

If roses were brown
and sugar was peppery,
love would still prevail.

*  *  *

No shenanigans
today or tomfoolery,
if you please. Thank you.

*  *  *

Sunday birds singing
David Bowie’s greatest hits,
or so I presume.

*  *  *

Twitter poetry
is a cheeseburger with fries
and a diet Coke.

*  *  *

Grandma’s patchwork quilt
of old days long remembered
one stitch out of time.

*  *  *

That damn cat wants out
and in again on demand,
like I’m her hired hand.

*  *  *

Cats will not be trained.
They make cat whisperers cry
for even trying.

*  *  *

There’s a good reason
it's called Tornado Alley
and not Sprinkle Lane.

*  *  *

In out in out in
out again. What? Now back in?
The fickle feline.

*  *  *

Sunday afternoon
Michelle, ma belle, on vinyl
kinda lazy day.

*  *  *

Long day ‘bout over
‘cept for the owl on sentry
asking hard questions.

*  *  *

You can smell the rain.
At least that’s what they tell me.
My nose is stopped up.

*  *  *

Monday ain’t no worse
than a ne’e-do-well Thursday.
It just seems like it.

*  *  *

A warm summer rain
taps on my roof like Sammy
doing Bojangles.

*  *  *

That old chesnut, love,
should be shared with everyone,
not just our neighbors.

*  *  *

Dig the blue mohawk
coloring the River Walk
in old San Antone.

*  *  *

Monday walk about
the yard thinking to mow but
not now, tomorrow.

*  *  *

She stood there for us,
resolute in her beliefs
and kicked their asses.

*  *  *

It’s been a good day
and it’s not even lunchtime.
Hard work is the key.

*  *  *

Sunday is a day
of restaurant deciding;
Thai or fried chicken?

*  *  *

I don’t think my verse
can save me like I’m hopin’.
But no use mopin’.

*  *  *

Good morning Monday.
Since we’re going the same way,
can I hitch a ride?

*  *  *

Sunday afternoon
guilt of way too much reading,
not enough yard work.

*  *  *

I have a poem
tree blooming from my top shelf.
It reveals the world.

*  *  *

He was a good cat
that didn’t give a rat’s ass
a chance to relax.

*  *  *

Can’t miss the sunrise,
the sweetest part of the day.
Gus and his biscuits.

*  *  *

Outside, an old owl.
I have no answers for him,
but he keeps asking.

*  *  *

It don’t come easy:
the good stuff, rewards, self-worth.
Only through hard work.

*  *  *

That shower was nice
but the ground sucked it up dry
as a martini.

*  *  *

Sunday-morning news:
Walmart Sells Deep Fried Twinkies.
Unhealthy? So what?

*  *  *

Tuesday, what a lark;
rise, shine, work, love, show kindness,
forge a better world.

*  *  *

Headline News: A smile;
Next up in sports: Simone Biles;
Weather: Sunny, mild.

*  *  *

The Queen of England
is made of cosmic star stuff
just like you and me.

*  *  *

The place seems empty
now that she’s no longer here
to say good morning.

*  *  *

Coffee, porch, sunlit
trees, cool breeze and mockingbird
impersonations.

*  *  *

Stick with haiku, son.
That simple 5-7-5
suits your intellect.

*  *  *

Last summer rainstorm,
oh how I love the way you
keep me from mowing.

*  *  *

Autumn always sneaks
in through Summer’s back screen door
just to sit a spell.

*  *  *

Gracious how the week
progresses to Saturday
and gives me a lift.

*  *  *

A frog in the pond /croaked, croaked, croaked, croaked, croaked all night long / just because, I guess.

*  *  *

San Antonio
Saturday street ArtPace-ing
haiku in the wild.

*  *  *

Back home on the cool
porch breezes and hot coffee
cup between my hands.

*  *  *

Lazy-day cookin’
red beans and cornbread lookin’
like my kind of grub.

*  *  *

It’s anybody’s
guess who’s coming to dinner,
but we always share.

*  *  *

Another debate?
Weren’t the first two more than clear?
Never Trump! Never!

*  *  *

Watching meteors
shower over my homestead.
Streak, flash, and then gone.

*  *  *

Cool Texas morning.
Hot Columbian coffee.
All is well, for now.

*  *  *

In case you missed it,
I used ICYMI
in a tweet today.

*  *  *

Wednesday haiku night.
Smoke-filled room, beer, pen, paper.
Just me and the boys.

*  *  *

Circus still in town.
Scary clown won’t go away.
Damn the elephants.

*  *  *

An extra hour?
I’ll use mine out on the porch,
just being quiet.

*  *  *

Just another day
to plot how we’ll change the world
for the good of all.

*  *  *

Out of many, one
nation of all the people
we must overcome.

*  *  *

The old clock is tick
tocking, mocking all this time
we think is owed us.

*  *  *

Saturday night life
around the kitchen table:
talk, laugh, friends, food, love.

*  *  *

Today’s grand exploit?
I went out to get the mail.
It was only junk.

*  *  *

I don’t mind the rain
as long as it knows its place:
Out. Not leaking in.

*  *  *

I'd rather be home,
but the trail don't go that way.
Someday, yes. Someday.

*  *  * 

THE END