Down days

I won’t pull any punches here — yesterday absolutely and totally sucked. I woke up with a migraine, spending the next ten hours in bed with ice bags on my head and neck. It was as crappy as I’ve felt in a year or more.

No blogging. No fun. But no WuFlu.

At this age I don’t bounce back as quickly as I once did, nor do I bounce as high. I’m feeling better now but still not froggy enough to venture out. We’re staying put again today.

There’s truly nothing happening here other than the cold weather, which we’ve got handled. I do have a brief story to tell, something that made us laugh (uproariously) at ourselves.

Rewind with me to the 9th of September and our first visit to the settlement of Polebridge, Montana. Deb and I grabbed sandwiches and souvenirs at the Mercantile, including a can of Flathead Cherry Cider pressed by Last Chance Cider Mill in Billings. It was absurdly expensive so we bought only one, vowing to save it for “a special occasion.”

That can has been riding around in Ernie’s fridge ever since. Oh, we’d pull it out from time to time and throw it in our cooler on day trips — Kintla Lake, Buffalo River, The Mountain, whatever. We talked about cracking it on our wedding anniversary, Deb’s birthday, Christmas and New Year’s Eve. But we never opened it.

Finally, this past Sunday I announced to Deb, who was doing laundry in the back of the coach, “Tonight we’re gonna drink the damned cider!” I pulled the can from the fridge, put it down on the dinette table and removed the top.

Hearing laughter, Deb emerged. “What’s so funny?” she asked. I pointed at the can.

For almost four months now, we’d been refrigerating a candle.

No wonder it cost 12 bucks. The well-hidden label says the fragrance is “cashmere plum.”

There’s no way to not feel foolish about what we did. Our journey created a whirlwind of enthusiasm, and more than once we were swept up in a moment. This, however, had to be the silliest.

I can promise y’all one thing — we’ll laugh our asses off every time we light that candle. Cashmere plum. Smells pretty good, actually.


Trusting the current occupant of the Oval Office to
“preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States
is like hiring Jim Jones to tend bar.


In this hyper-cautious, dumbed-down society of ours, those of us who grew up in a different time could be excused for shaking our heads in disbelief. Yes, we’re the ones who drank from garden hoses, rode untethered in the beds of pickup trucks and played Jarts.

What few warning labels there were we ignored. So did our parents, mostly. And yet we survived.

“Fifty years ago, a car’s manual included instructions for adjusting the valves,” says a popular meme. “Now it warns the owner not to drink the contents of the battery.”

Whenever I think I might be exaggerating just how rock-stupid our world has become, I’m presented with another reminder. Take, for example, this map (see the images below) published by the state of Texas for visitors to Guadalupe River State Park.

That’s right, boys and girls, we live among people don’t know the difference between a river and a carnival ride.

(No, that’s not at all like mistaking a scented candle disguised as a can of cherry cider for a can of cherry cider. Stop it. Stay with me.)

These folks handle sharp objects and flammable liquids. They drive cars and operate power tools. They breed. Worst of all, they vote.

You’ll never go wrong underestimating the intelligence of the people around you. Never forget that.

Take care of yourselves, Patriots. Stay calm. Stay sharp. Stay free.

#WiseUp #LibertyOrDeath

#LetsGoBrandon

(Today’s header image: A grove of red cedars among the ledges on The Mountain, which is where I’d rather be right now.)