Thursday, July 30, 2009

Global Cooling

It’s the end of July.

Four years ago, the local media was saying we were never going to have another drop of rain in the summertime.

But, global cooling, the new weather phenomenon has started. Official at the airport we have received 3.52 inches of rain in July. That’s 1.6 inches more than normal this month. The rain gauge in my back yard has collected more that 5.7 inches and it is still raining. We now surpass Seattle in rainfall for 2009.

Along with the rain, there have been the hailstorms. Some storms have produced hail one to two inch in diameter. These storms are usually accompanied by strong winds and severe lightening. Temperatures most July have been in the sixties to mid-seventies, roughly 20 degrees lower than normal.

Then there are the tornados. Twelve tornados were reported just yesterday. Rarely does a day go by without having a tornado warning or watch. While the number of tornados is unusual so is the time of day they have been taking place – the middle of the night. Up until this year, tornados have occurred mid to late afternoon. We just passed Kansas in the number of tornados for the year.

So global cooling has started and I am responsible for it. If global warming is caused by cutting down trees, then it stands to reason that global cooling is caused by all the trees I have help plant over the years.

Monday, July 27, 2009

My Day In A Sentence

Meetings . . . the practical alternative to work.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Sunday Funnies

A woman parked her car and hurriedly scribbled a note that she tucked under her windshield wipers. It read, "I've circled this block for 20 minutes. I'm late for an appointment. If I don't park here, I'll lose my job. ‘Forgive us our trespasses.’"

Returning, she found parking ticket and this note: "I've circled this block for 20 years, and if I don't give you a ticket, I'll lose my job... ‘Lead us not into temptation.’"

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Sunday Funnies

A Pastor was in an unfamiliar town for a church conference. Wanting to see the sites of the city, he called for a taxi.

After driving around for the awhile the Pastor leaned forward and tapped the taxi driver on the shoulder to ask him a question.The driver screamed, lost control of the cab, nearly hit a bus, drove up over the curb, and stopped just inches from a large plate glass window.

For a few moments everything was silent in the cab, and then the still shaking driver said, “I'm sorry, but you scared the daylights out of me!”

The frightened Pastor apologized to the driver and said he didn't realize a mere tap on the shoulder could frighten him so much.

The driver replied, “No, no, I'm sorry, it's entirely my fault. Today is my first day driving a cab. I've been driving a hearse for the last 25 years.”

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Done And Perfect

I recently gave a copy of my 2008 Homespun Headlines book to a lady I work with. I’m very selective about giving away books at work. I don’t want to detract from the book sales at my retirement party.

She has been reading it and giving me frequent updates on the stories she had read. Recently she said to me, “Say, Ralph, did you know there is a mistake in your book?”

Ralph: There are several mistakes but you’re probably referring to the one on page 257 where I wrote ‘won’t not’. I forgot to take out the word ‘not’.

Lady: Yeah. . . that’s the one. . . how did you know?

Ralph: I read that text several times before having it printed and still missed it. Editing your own writing is really hard. Then once you think it is okay and send it off you notice the mistakes.

Lady: So. . .are you going to fix it?

Ralph: I don’t know.

Lady: You don’t know?

Ralph: When I first saw it, I was mad. Then I thought maybe I created a new phrase – ‘won’t not’. It may end up meaning ‘absolutely, positively no way in the world’. I know a lady who created her own word – hitonious. So maybe, ‘won’t not’ will become the next popular phrase. That and sometimes, done is better than perfect.

Our visit ended. I sat there for a minute and thought about it. For a lot of things in life that is true - done is better than perfect.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Sunday Funnies

A Christian lady had to do a lot of traveling for her business that involved a lot of flying. But, flying made her nervous so she always took her Bible because reading it helped her relax.

Once she was sitting next to a man who chuckled when she took out her Bible. After a while, he turned to her and asked, "You don't really believe all that stuff do you?"

The lady replied, "Of course I do. It’s the Bible."

"Well what about that guy that was swallowed by that whale?" said the man.

She replied "Oh, Jonah. Yes I believe that, it is in the Bible."

The man continued, "Well, how do you suppose he survived all that time inside the whale?"

The lady thought for a moment then said, "I don't really know but when I get to heaven I’ll ask him."

"What if he isn't in heaven?" the man asked sarcastically.

"Then you can ask him." replied the lady.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

The Great Chicago Fire

Perhaps you have heard of the great Chicago fire. Well, it almost happened again. The following phone conversation recently took place.

DOR (Daughter of Ralph): Dad!! The oven on the counter caught fire! What do I do?

I flashed back to my forest fire days and almost said, “Grab a shovel and build a line around it down to bare soil.” Then I realized that wouldn’t work very well in a second story apartment. I also ruled out starting a backfire by the sink and hoping the two would burn together.

Ralph: Call the fire department.
DOR: It’s inside the oven. Should I put water on it?
Ralph: What’s burning?
DOR: Crumbs in the crumb tray. Wait . . . . it might be going out.
Ralph: Don’t open the door. Wait until it goes out and cools down before you open the door. Remember the microwave?
DOR (after a little chuckle): Yeah, I remember. Okay it’s burning across the tray and is almost out.
Ralph: So, when was the last time you cleaned out the crumb tray?
DOR: It’s been awhile. Okay. . . .it’s out.

Now I don’t care who you are, putting out a fire a thousand miles away is hard work. Not to mention what it does to your heart rate and blood pressure.

Ralph: You know I’m going to have to blog about this, right?
DOR (after a long pause): Yeah, but only if you tell about the microwave.
Ralph (after a long pause): Okay.

Years ago, when the kids were young, I gave Char a microwave as a gift. Back then, it was state of the art but still covered most of the counter top. We used it a lot but it was especially useful on Monday nights when the family would gather to watch the television show, Alf. We would generally watch Alf while snacking on popcorn and ice cream. One evening, getting ready to watch Alf, I hurriedly placed a bag of popcorn in the microwave before running into the family room.

DOR was about five years old at the time and during a commercial, I asked her to go see if the popcorn was done. When she returned, I asked about the popcorn and in a calm and relaxed voice she said, “I don’t know. There’s too much smoke.”

Nothing can interrupt a good episode of Alf like a house fire. I ran into the kitchen and discovered DOR was right, there was too much smoke. The entire kitchen, the dining room, and part of the living room were filled with a dense black smoke. I had accidentally set the timer for thirty minutes instead of three – mistake one.

I yanked opened the microwave door only to realize that was not the thing to do – mistake two. The popcorn bag erupted into flames. I grabbed the bag and ran through the kitchen and living room with a flaming bag of popcorn – mistake three.

Outside I used my forest fire training and stomped the living @$%^* out of that popcorn bag.

We used that microwave for many more years and every time the aroma of burnt popcorn filled the room.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Hard To Believe

It’s hard to believe that at this time last year I was considered slave labor at the Morrow farm. Okay that's a huge exaggeration because many people were putting the final touches on. . . .

I’ve relived the adventure through my posts located here and here and here.

Have a safe Fourth of July.