Just rambling thoughts about anything that happens to be on my mind and that usually isn't much!
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Sunday, June 22, 2008

Boots spurs and tennis shoes

Yesterday morning at the coffee shop, after the "how much rain did we get" report was over, Clyde asked about where a guy could get a pair of boots fixed.
"This is the most comfortable pair of dress boots I ever had" he continued. "But the sole is getting a hole in it.  Does anyone around still half sole boots?"
From around the table came suggestions where guys had had boots fixed; Wichita, Ponca City,  Bartlesville, Amarillo.   With each suggestion came the consumer report for that place of business and the price last paid.
"Well there's a guy down at Niotaze that does a good job.  He done these." Clem offered as he raised his foot to the edge of the table for everyone's nod of approval, "and he only charged twenty bucks!" which brought more nods of approval. 
"The wife wants me to throw them away" Clyde continued.  "But dang it's hard to find comfortable boots anymore.  Everything I try on hurts my feet.  She says maybe I should just get me a pair of loafers to wear for dress.  I'd feel plum naked though without boots on."
All nodded their agreement except for one.
"I did break down and buy me a pair of tennis shoes the other day," Chester offered sheepishly.
"Tennis shoes?" asked Clyde needing clarification he had heard correctly.
"Yeah!" exclaimed Chester in defense.  "I got tired of my feet hurting" he said hoping to rectify his reasoning. 
Clyde was just looking at his friend with one eyebrow raised, the other sort of squinting.  "What brand did you get?"  
"Well," Chester continued.  "I just stopped at Wal-Mart and got me a cheap pair."
"Not a pair of them gray ones that all the old men wear around town?" Clyde asked, still disbelieving his life long cowboy friend.  "With the Velcro straps?"
"Yep" Chester said putting his foot up on the table.  "Really, sort of comfortable.  The only thing wrong is trying to keep a set of spurs on them".
"Goodness!" Clyde snorted in disbelief.  "At least you ain't got none of them bermuda shorts."
"Uh ....." Chester stammered, "bought a pair of those too."

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Standing in his shadow

A couple weeks ago, I was getting gas down at the Copan Truck stop .. (out at the fuel pumps ... not in the restaurant!) .. when this semi pulled along the next fuel island.  The driver set the air and had no sooner set one foot on the ground when a boy about 10 years old came bailing out the driver side door.
"Dad", he asked, "can I put the diesel in?"  The driver nodded and patiently helped the youngster start the fuel into the tank.  All the while the youngster was jabbering excitedly about this and that.
"Dad, can I bump the tires?" was his next question.  The driver reached in just under the seat and handed the boy a small ball peen hammer which the excited youngster grabbed and headed back hitting each tire to check inflation.  The driver followed along closely lending a trained ear to the sound as the boy struck each tire.
"Dad, that one sound low?" the boy ask, sounding some what excited that he might have found one.
"I believe it's ok" the driver answered, "let's check the rest of them."  I watched and listened as the two walked around the truck, the same question / answer repeated at each set of duals, the driver patiently teaching his son.
My car now fueled, I was ready to leave when they walked close by.  "That's quite a swamper you've got there" I said with a wink.
"Yeah, he's still a little short on one end ... but I think he'll make it" the driver said looking down with a grin.  The boy, standing in his father's shadow beamed with pride.
I looked at the sign on the door of the truck ..... Wilson Freight Line, Omaha Nebraska ... but for a second, I was transported back 46 years and it read E. L. Reddish, Springdale, Arkansas.
Thanks Dad .. I ain't forgot your guidance .. Happy Father's Day

Friday, June 6, 2008

Visiting Tess

The Warden and I came to Peoria yesterday on our annual pilgrimage to visit our youngest daughter, her husband .... and of course our youngest grand daughter Tess. The drive up was a perfect day except very windy. (The strong tail winds did help improve gas mileage though!!) And the folks in STL actually had the ramp fixed onto the I70 bridge (first time in 5 years we made it on to the bridge without a few hour delay or detouring .... click here for a recap of a previous attempt)

And I must explain my absence from the blogosphere for the past few days (other than not having a thought worth recording). Last Saturday morning we had one heck of a hail storm. The biggest blessing the Warden and I have is that we are not depending on farming for a living. The crops locally to Burden were indeed destroyed or greatly reduced.

Our insurance agent acted quickly though and an adjuster was examining our house for damage Wednesday by noon. He reported to us late Wednesday night with the claim. Roof (the one we put on brand new last Oct with 30 year Heritage shingles) was totaled. The gutters (installed new a year ago) totaled. The siding on the north, west and east ... totaled. It appears the estimates are sufficient .... so basically we are going to end up with almost a cosmetically new house.

But back to the better things to write about .... our trip to see Tess.

Tess turned one just last week and we hadn't got to play with her since Christmas. Ruth had kept us "up to date" with U-tube videos of her changing, learning to walk and beginning to speak. Now naturally, when Ruth sent a video of Tess learning to say "Pappy" last week ... my desire to come to Peoria grew 100%.

For those who can view U-tubes click here to view this awesome event.

Now (as Paul Harvey says) for the rest of the story. As everyone knows, to teach a child a new word, one has to repeat the word often .... and soon the child mimics the word. At the same time the child is also associating the word with the event that is happening. An example would be saying "no" and swatting the hand. This of course teaches the child that when you say "no" they are to stop what they are doing.

Herein lies the problem .... Ruth often used the time changing dirty diapers to repeat the word "Pappy". So at this time, Pappy means dirty diaper ... but I'm optimistic I'll have the meaning changed before I leave to go home ... and hopefully I don't just redirect it till Tess thinks I'm a dirty old man. What I'm wondering now is ..... did Ruth just overlook the "repeat / association" technique .... or is she picking up some of the Warden's devious ways?