TPBM 109 - A PT boat and a dead president; that's all I got


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TPBM 109 - A PT boat and a dead president; that's all I got

Maio 12, 2:55pm

The previous question was about whether TPBM has ever eaten flowers.

I can't say that I have, but I have neighbor-friends whom, in the 32 years I've lived here in Central Texas, have never mowed their lawns -- front nor back. Instead, they create fresh salads from the feral plant matter (mostly weeds) that exists there.

TPBM has had a hand in creating topiary.

Maio 12, 3:17pm

If you mean the random whacking down of various and sundry plants around here then yes, otherwise no.

Excellent title, by the way, Mike!

TPBM will be planting a vegetable garden soon.

Maio 12, 7:15pm

// Thanks Karen, you're too kind. //

I shall not be doing so. As a matter of fact, the last dozen or so of the interlocking cinder blocks that were the borders/walls of my raised garden will be going to the property of one of MrsHouseLibrary's sisters in a few weeks. Currently. they're stacked at the end of my driveway. The soil that they enclosed was a mixture of ground up tree limbs, a few hundred bags of topsoil (over the course of many years) and decayed plant matter that grew there when I maintained the garden.
Both ThiMs and MrsHouseLibrary were avid garden enthusiasts. That is not to say that they were active gardeners, however. They both cajoled me for a decent garden area and selected which plants they wanted to grow there, but did absolutely nothing to prepare the area, plant the seed/lings, nor maintain the space. They sure loved to show it off, though.
That and the fact they were both female and had been married to me were the only things they had in common. But, I digress.
The mound of dirt that remains would be slowly shrinking and spreading out across my back yard, except for the fact that, in the process of removing trees and plants killed off by February's glacial encroachment and recedence, and removing a lot of lawnmower blade-wrecking rocks, I've trenched around the pile of dirt to use it to fill several dozen ankle-twisting holes in the yard.
I can use all the dirt I've got, but there are four other major interdependent outdoor projects that must be addressed before I can finish leveling out the yard.
Regardless, no gardening for me this year, and probably never again.

TPBM didn't fall for that "we found mushrooms on Mars" story from last week.

Maio 13, 5:17am

Sorry to say it passed me by. I believe less and less of what people tell me nowadays - my Amazon Prime sub being renewed automatically, the £300 charge on my Mastercard to a foreign country, the illegal activity on my broadband, it goes on and on. At least the little Martian blobs don’t look as if they could handle a death ray or a light sabre.

Only thing I could think of for the thread title was the Me109 - the Third Reich’s response to the Spitfire and the P51 - but WHL’s is much better, thinking of which.....

TPBM thinks JFK might have enjoyed using Twitter.

Maio 13, 4:38pm

TPAM has it slightly backwards (but that's ok) - Me109 - debut 1937, Spitfire - debut 1938, P-51 debut - for 109 my first thought (probably because I just recently finished a biography about her) was Meitnerium - element 109.

Hmmmmmmm....JFK and Twitter .... I don't know, what little I've seen of Twitter doesn't square with what little I know of JFK.

TPBM first thought concerning the number 109 was the police call code for suicide.

Maio 17, 12:03am

//just placing my mark here//

Maio 17, 2:05am

Nope. My mind is still trying to deal with 'why didn't everyone just stick with 999 for all emergencies?' Yeah, yeah, practicality, clogging up call centres and so on. The pertinent point is - my brain can't cope.

TPBM has managed to finish a heap of outstanding hobby projects in the past year or so. (Not me - I started a heap, which are now awaiting completion.)

Maio 19, 9:28am

Not really. My life changed very little during the pandemic. I still had to go to the office every day.

TPBM always has a project in process.

Maio 19, 10:15am

Dozens, if not hundreds. This morning, I’m tearing through my recipe collection. The pages that hold the cards have begun falling apart and I got replacement pages. Tossing entries that I will never make and starting a pile of cards that will either be used this year or tossed as well.
Caressing the cards written in my mother’s hand.

TPBM has a recording of a parent’s voice.

Maio 19, 11:14am

30 years old, on a DVD of the VHS tape of our wedding. I can almost still hear their voices in my mind. My husband told me on Mother's Day that he really missed my mother's laugh, and I had to agree. Sigh.

TPBM has recently found a photograph that they thought they'd lost.

Maio 21, 10:13am

I haven't looked through old photos lately because they tend to make me sad.

TPBM dances around the house.

Maio 21, 12:01pm

I don't dance. Blame the motorcycle/car accident back in '73. It destroyed the majority of about eight inches of the nerve in my right leg. There's a significant enough mental effort into standing still and/or walking for me, although at this point people will probably notice only that I have a limp. Regardless, dancing is a skill I'll never develop -- much like playing the harmonica or any wind instrument, I suspect.

TPBM rocks around the clock.

Maio 24, 7:34am

C’mon! With my knees? I am old enough to remember the local youth slashing the seats at the Hall Green Odeon when Bill Haley and his Comets appeared on screen.

TPBM quite enjoys mayhem.

Maio 24, 7:58am

In books, not in real life. I prefer quiet, predictability, and No Surprises.

TPBM truly does enjoy mayhem.

Maio 25, 9:46am

No, I'm like you >14 karenmarie:. No Surprises. That's why I make lists, plan ahead and envision events I plan so I will be prepared. People must be well fed and entertained.

TPBM will attend a real (as opposed to virtual) event this summer.

Maio 25, 1:19pm

Not in the summer, but last weekend, and in October, but you never know.

The late MrsHouseLibrary's extended family had their (except for last year) annual family reunion. There were almost 30 there, and I was the sole representative of her father's branch of the family tree.

This October, I'm going to attend my high school 50.1 reunion in New Jersey. It was supposed to be last year, but sanity prevailed. I'm thinking I just might drive there this time. I've been saving for it for two years, so perhaps add some side trips -- visit my brother in Maine, a niece in New York, a cousin in Pennsylvania ... maybe. Just realized I'm going to have to stop and do laundry along the way. Note to self: start collecting quarters. Do they still take quarters? Have they switched over to credit cards only? Second note to self: Find out how it's done.

TPBM is a detail, process-driven sort of personality.

Maio 25, 1:50pm

I don’t even know what that means. And it sounds like I don’t want to.

I can tell you that laundromats do still operate on quarters, just more of them; at least in my neck of the woods. Since it caters to people on the low end of the economic scale, I doubt it will switch to electronic payment options this year.

TPBM has dirt beneath their nails today.

Maio 25, 9:04pm

With my job, it's unusual if I don't have some dirt under my nails.

TPBM won't be/didn't (depending on time they reply,) watch(ing) the lunar eclipse.

Editado: Maio 26, 12:11am

Coincidentally, just as I was reading this thread but before I got to post >18 rastaphrog:, my husband walked into the study to discuss our plans for seeing the eclipse tonight. So ... we plan to.

TPBM has a sure-fire way of getting rid of termites (that doesn't involve destroying furniture or moving out of the house).

Maio 29, 3:21pm

Are you okay with human sacrifice? DM me for details.

TPBM has theater tickets.

Maio 29, 11:31pm

// >20 SomeGuyInVirginia: I may be desperate enough soon.//

// >19 humouress: We missed the eclipse. a) It was too cloudy so no-one in Singapore saw it. b) Horizons in Singapore tend to be quite high. We're very lucky in that our horizon has trees and not high-rises but by the time the moon cleared it, the eclipse was over. Not that we would have been able to see it anyway.//

Maio 30, 4:28am

Assuming that >21 humouress:’s desperation is termite related rather than thespian, I’ll answer >20 SomeGuyInVirginia:.

Not yet, and not any time soon. London theatres are starting to stir into action but many can’t make money with a socially-distanced half-full house so are keeping their doors closed. Covid related risk insurance is unavailable which also inhibits theatre managers. Anyhow, the prospect of an auditorium with scattered blobs of masked household groups is unappealing, as, for that matter, is the train ride into town.

I’ll stick with old movies on the telly for now.

TPBM has a favourite movie they happily watch over and over again.

Maio 30, 7:01am

Love, Actually immediately comes to mind, as does Damn Yankees.

TPBM also has a favorite movie they happily watch over and over again.

Maio 30, 11:00am

Just the opposite, I almost never revisit favorite movies because I'm afraid that being familiar with them would spoil them for me.

TPBM worked on a movie set.

Maio 30, 12:37pm

I know a few who have, but my closest experience that way was working on the stage crew in high school. Beyond that, the only set I've worked on was an Erector set when I was a kid.

TPBM would rather have N gauge toy trains instead of HO gauge.

Jun 1, 12:31pm

I never played with trains but my brother had a toy electric race track and he would let me race him (of course he always got the best car and almost always won). It was fun trying to control the speed on the corners so the car didn't fly off the track and disappear into a corner and lose the race.

TPBM is expecting guests.

Jun 2, 1:42am


I mean, no. My family is a continent away and we are currently 'not' in lockdown but the 'rule of two' (among other tighter restrictions) is in place so you can only meet one person at a time.

TPBM is (still) thinking of taking up a new hobby.

Editado: Jun 2, 5:33pm

>27 humouress: I'm thinking about learning to play guitar.

My PCA friend is a musician (13 instruments!) and teacher.

TPBM has paid for an online class.

Jun 2, 6:53pm

// Hey there, Morphie! Good luck building up those callouses. Once you get past that, it's a breeze.//

Yes, yes, I have -- but not for me.
After my youngest son graduated high school (2007), he and a friend decided that they wanted to open a Game Stop store in the area. And my son being the brainiac of the pair, decided he needed to know accounting and related subjects to manage the business. He enrolled in an online school, no problem. But when it came to paying for it -- despite him being legally an adult, a parent was required to secure the student loan, which I paid off ten years later. My son, well, he kept at it for six whole weeks and just stopped.
I hear that's fairly common.

TPBM never welshed on a bet. (I swear, I didn't know it was spelled that way until just now. I always heard "weltched" when people said it. Not to self: consult a Thesaurus; this is likely to cause an uprising!)

Jun 6, 1:33am

Absolutely not! That wouldn't be Southern. Of course, it helps that I only bet small amounts.

TPBM has had it up to here with ________.

Jun 6, 2:07am

... here being an arbitrary point from the ground. Where is the Standards Committee, dammit?

TPBM has been there.

Jun 6, 2:27am

Probably not; I'm only five foot. And a half.

TPBM knows where there is.

Jun 6, 11:15am

There is here, of course.

TPBM can't get enough _________.

Jun 7, 2:19am

dry air today. (I washed a carpet yesterday and want it to get dry during the day). Carpet diem :-)

TPBM prefers carps to carpets.

Jun 7, 8:38am

Newp. Don't want to clean either one.

TPBM has run out of steam.

Editado: Jun 7, 10:54am

Yup. I’ve got two grandchildren today. Fortunately, the 11yo is devoted to the 2yo and they are finger painting without my needing to have eyes on. The fatigue is probably more the wood cutting we did yesterday and the 2yo up and chipper at 6 this morning. My back hurts!

TPBM aches elsewhere.

Jun 7, 12:55pm

Perpetually. Don't want to go there.

TPBM is prepared for any emergency, except for perhaps nuclear war and alien invasions.

Jun 8, 6:25pm

Yes! When the lockdown started I packed my shelves with box wine and the Peyton Place series in Hungarian because I figured that would take me longer to get through. Is that you what you meant, or was that more of a 'do you keep your spare tire inflated' question?

TPBM will improvise during the apocalypse.

Editado: Jun 9, 8:32pm

As John Gorka sang:

I'm from New Jersey
I don't expect too much
If the world ended today
I would adjust; I would adjust

Sometimes I sing that at an Open Mic Night because there are only two lines in the entire song that are nut not true of me personally.
Afterward, the audience has to tell me which lines those are. I give them very broad hints during the song, and five chances to identify the correct lines. If they didn't answer correctly, I punish them with another song.
There's a very good reason why I'm introduced as Mike, The Song Butcher.

TPBM is befuddled that it's currently cooler in Texas than it is in the northern states.

Jun 10, 4:23am

// I’d go for watching too much TV or having an Italian mom. Tempted by Italian ancestry but I don’t see the young WHL glued to the box, so has to be that.//

Editado: Jun 10, 7:03am

Is it? Fascinating. I'm currently sweltering here in Singapore; the Weather Channel tells me it's currently 28ºC but feels like 33 (or 89F, according to my calculations).

TPBM saw the eclipse today (safely). I've only just found out there is/ was one, but not on this side of the world.

//>40 abbottthomas: You seem to know a lot about WHL's life. Hmm.//

Jun 10, 7:23am

Yes. I'm still seing it actually. Even took a couple of photos of it. And of course this included pictures of the dark side of the moon.

TPBM thinks Eugene should be careful with the axe.

Jun 10, 7:48am

//Ooh - could you post some of your photos here please?//

Jun 10, 4:25pm

// The local news media beat me to it :-)
// That's exactly what it looked like from my back door a few minutes before I posted >42 bnielsen:

Jun 11, 10:18am

He'll be fine as long as he and Maxwell Edison don't don't team up.

TPBM holds the secret to life itself.

Jun 11, 8:46pm

For eighteen and a half years, I did -- every day and night that we possible could. I still love her more than salt.

//>40 abbottthomas: and >41 humouress:
The good abbot doesn't know me nearly as well as you might think from reading all these TPBM posts over the years. Mom, or MEL as we were apt to refer to her, was, much to the chagrin of her mother, English/Irish (with a single instance of Dutch in her ancestry. My grandmother believed he was Irish, based on the immigration papers of his grandfather. It was a few decades after my grandfather died that my grandmother learned from the family in Ireland that they were "Englishmen living in Ireland." She felt betrayed, saying that she had "raised a bunch of bastards."
There is some Italian on my father's mother's side, but it's four or five generations back, and it's a very long story, so I'll spare you.
So yeah, I watched too much TV when I was young. Mostly, my siblings and I watched Chuck and Bill Gates (no, not that one) replace tubes in the back of the TV more often than we watched shows. Chuck and Bill were also the school bus drivers for the parochial school we attended. They fixed TVs in the evenings and on weekends. //

TPBM holds the keys to success, but seems to have no idea where the lock is.

Jun 12, 5:18am

*sigh* Yeah. And watching my eldest being equally clueless even though I can see that he has an amazing set of keys.

TPBM will dispense sage parenting advice.

Jun 12, 6:42am

//>46 WholeHouseLibrary: I feel I have been a bit misled. If I'd known that "watching TV" meant looking at moonlighting bus drivers taking the set to pieces rather than I Love Lucy, Bonanza or Dragnet, I think I would have come to a different conclusion. Did you and your siblings chip in with helpful advice, I wonder?//

Jun 12, 9:02am

Pick your battles and only threaten what you're willing to go through with.

Learned the hard way with my now almost-28-year old stubborn and opinionated daughter.

TPBM also has some sage parenting advice.

Jun 12, 9:18am

You are only expected to get through one day at a time. And prayer helps.

TPBM will chime in with more wisdom.

Jun 12, 10:52am

I don't have kids, but if I did I wouldn't have a television in the house. I'd also try to keep them off social media, if that's possible without actually having to travel back in time.

TPBM has more sage parenting advice.

Jun 12, 12:25pm

Don't let them outnumber you. Remind yourself often that there's lots of stuff they don't know. Feed them good quality food and enrich their minds too. Brush them often to avoid mats. Clean up after them without feeling taken for granted.

I mean, I am a cat parent, but some stuff is the same, right?

TPBM has better advice.

Jun 12, 2:41pm

The thing about knowing a lot of stuff is that it limits you. Being clueless give you the freedom to be bold and fearless in life.

TPBM will provide an example, please.

//>48 abbottthomas: Don't get me wrong, good abbot. There was Romper Room (with Miss Barbara), the Sid Caesar Show, Tobor, Howdy Doody, Sky King, Fury, Rin Tin Tin, Toast of the Town, Jackie Gleason, The Tonight Show with Jack Parr (then Steve Allen) ... and the McCarthy Hearings. So yeah, way too much TV.
Regardless, the technology for creating vacuum tubes hadn't changed much in those thirty-plus years, and they burned out often enough that you could buy replacements for each in hardware stores even, and have a few spares sitting in the pantry shelf right next to the light bulbs. Not us, though. My father's aversion to electricity was almost as bad as his reaction to the sight of blood (another story for another time.) He wore two pairs of rubber gloves and would utter, "Lord, into Your hands I commit my spirit" every time he had to replace a fuse. Curiously, one of his older brothers - a Jesuit priest and ham radio operator with 3 (but 2 at the time) PhDs in his resume - was quite adept at, and comfortable with, handling any task involving electricity and electronics. I learned it all from him. He also fixed the TV occasionally; had his own tube tester even. //

Editado: Jun 16, 5:54pm

Know far too much. Far too smart. Been through too damn much. In my mid-50s and it still limits me. However (always "however" or "and" never "but)", my sense of humor pulls me through. If I couldn't laugh at myself and life... SMDH.

TPBM has a different personality trait or life skill that has helped them get through the trials and tribulations of life.

Jun 17, 10:23am

Walking and alcohol (not at the same time though) Neither are a trait or skill, but I find they help.

TPBM has other coping skills.

Jun 18, 7:41pm

I find that drinking does help, but being drunk does not. I've also found that there are a vast array of options to choose from to feel better when you don't feel well. So choose your groove.

TPBM has an item in their house that makes people pause and respond WTF?!

Jun 18, 9:37pm

I used to. It was my first wife, ThiMs.

One of my sons had a girlfriend whose parents were enthusiastic collectors of taxidermied animals from Africa. MrsHouseLibrary was greatly disturbed to see these creatures, but I have to admit seeing the torso of a chimpanzee was reason enough to leave in disgust.

TPBM has a low threshold for ____________.

Editado: Jun 18, 11:18pm

Loud noises. Especially unexpected ones like fireworks on non-holidays. They are ubiquitous in our neighborhood and can, at times, set my nerves so high it takes me hours to calm down. I don't know why. It's not like there's gunfire here in this white bread exsuburb. Nor that I grew up with gunfire around or have PSTD. I do have ADHD and anxiety which make me sound sensitive.

A ticking clock can get on my nerves on certain days and someone clicking a pen can drive me right up a wall. Fireworks and loud cracks of thunder though... that's lizard brain time.

TPBM has a high threshold for _____________.

Jun 20, 11:42am

Pain. Not sure how I got that because I'm pretty much a total wuss.

TPBM lives in a house with stained glass windows.

Editado: Jun 20, 1:15pm

The only ones I know of who have (possibly) are gawd, and Ray and Alice Brock - and their dog Facha. Makes me wonder if the stones they shouldn't cast must be of stained glass as well.

TPBM reads a daily newspaper.

Jun 20, 2:49pm

I read The Times on weekdays. I'm not entirely sure why as the paper is a shadow of its former self. Things went downhill after they stopped putting the personal column on the front page and replaced it with headlines and irrelevant photographs. On Saturday I get the Financial Times which still produces high standard and non-partisan journalism with a much more international feel than the rest of the UK press.

TPBM regularly reads a local newspaper

Jun 20, 3:36pm

// >59 SomeGuyInVirginia: My glass windows are centainly stained. Does that count?

Jun 20, 5:04pm

//>62 bnielsen: Yes, especially if it's from nicotine and the blood of martyrs.//

Jun 20, 5:32pm

>61 abbottthomas: Yes, since moving to Lynchburg, Virginia a few months ago I read the daily digital edition of the News and Advance. Ditto the Wall Street Journal. There's not much overlap in the coverage.

TPBM has subscribed to the same newspaper for more than 40 years.

Jun 20, 6:03pm

// >64 SomeGuyInVirginia: The only thing I know about your new home town is that it's a mighty rough road from Lynchburg down to Danville. Do take care if you take the train!//

Jun 20, 8:51pm

//>65 abbottthomas: Is that a Kenny Rogers thing? So far I'm loving Lynchburg. It's at the foothills of the Shenandoah mountains, so there are a lot of outdoor activities. There are also three colleges here in town, two of them secular, and there's that young vibe you get in a college town. It's one of the few towns in Virginia that the Union army never took, and you can still buy a nice house for $250,000.//

Jun 20, 10:50pm

// >66 SomeGuyInVirginia: Not any more because now we’re all going to move there.//

Well, not 40 (because we’d have been teenagers) and not me but my husband has been getting the Straits Times since before we got married (except for the couple of years that we lived in NYC) so for at least 25 years.

TPBM likes having to stay at home.

Jun 21, 8:32am

Yes, I've really enjoyed the forced aloneness. Too much so, perhaps. I'm going out to a Friends of the Library Board meeting this morning - the first in-person meeting since last March and lunch out tomorrow, which makes this week entirely too busy.

TPBM has been starved for company because of having to stay home.

Jun 21, 11:19am

I've been starved for company long before the pandemic. Between major depression and anxiety (caused by what was then undiagnosed ADHD which I've had for 45+ years) plus physical disability causing me to be homebound, I've had little to no company for 5+ years. Not just because I don't get out but because I self-isolate.

TPBM has/had a bad case of cabin fever during the pandemic.

Jun 22, 10:06am

Yes, but I didn't realize the degree of my cabin fever until I got my shots and started getting out in the world without worrying much. I found a lot of the lockdown to be very pleasant, but I suppose I'm more of a social animal which comes as much of a surprise to me as it would to anyone else.

TPBM has a cabin in the woods.

Jun 22, 10:25am

If I don’t mow this year, it’s possible. Lots of volunteer locusts already.

TPBM will come and help harvest the blackberries next month.

Jun 22, 11:25am

Kentucky's a bit of a slog from central NC, but thank you, Ruth!

My great-grandmother had huge blackberry bushes, and when we'd visit Iowa as kids we'd pick buckets of them. Served warm with cream and sugar - the best!

TPBM has a fond memory of their grandparents or great-grandparents.

Editado: Jun 23, 11:03am

*I use speech to text and often hit post before I read what the computer put down.

God yes. I knew both my great grandparents, and they introduced me to good and evil in the world but I didn't know it at the time; to the young me it was just life. My great-grandmother was sweet, and kind, and giving. My great-grandfather was a whiny punk who forced those that he knew and who loved him to serve him. To this day, anytime I pass a sunflower I always say hello to my great-grandmother, a woman I love to this very day and only met a few times. That's probably one reason why my great-grandmother and I seemed to just hit it off immediately, when she was in her upper 80s and I was in my low aughts. One of my fondest early memorues is of sunflowers. My great grandmother loved them and they were everywhere, and when I was a kid I used to walk through all her sunflower plantings just by myself and be in a different and magical world.

TPBM also has a magical memory.

Jun 24, 1:47am

// >73 SomeGuyInVirginia: That is magical. Thank you for sharing.//

Jun 25, 8:05am

//>74 humouress: Thank you for being so generous and kind.//

Jun 25, 8:07am

>73 SomeGuyInVirginia: Lots, which is probably why I'm such a mess.

TPBM has 50 ways to love your leaver.

Jun 25, 10:02am

Nope. I was always the leaver. That saved a lot of emotional angst.

TPBM is just starting to get out and about again after getting fully vaccinated against Covid.

Editado: Jun 25, 10:17am

Ack! Simulposted!

>76 SomeGuyInVirginia: I never actually kept count, but yes, there are various methods to excavate a protruding rock from the ground, but it mostly depends on the shape of the rock itself and the location of other objects in its vicinity. The employment of a fulcrum and a well-placed lever -- sometimes two -- required a certain finesse that, when employed often enough, becomes a dance of a sort; a certain Zennish quality of becoming one with the tool, the rock, the Earth itself. Bliss!

>77 karenmarie: Definitely! For the record, I'm fully vaccinated. I actually took myself on a dinner-and-movie date on Tuesday. The incentive was that my neighborhood lost power before noon and it wasn't expected to be on again until almost midnight. Did I mention that it's an all-electric neighborhood? I've also been playing at Open Mic Nights on Mondays and Thursdays.

TPBM is astounded to learn that I wrote the above before I've had my morning coffee.

Jun 25, 10:21am

Not really. No idea which post you’re answering ;0)

TPBM has a small person (niece, nephew etc) in their extended family who has achieved something special recently.

Jun 25, 10:48am

My almost three year old grand claimed she now has rocket boosters and proved it by zooming all around the back yard.

TPBM still has plants that need to go in the ground.

Jun 25, 11:31am

ooooooohhh crap I forgot about those.... (hangs head in shame). I bought some annuals but put them inside the back porch and haven't watered them. I'd better go check on them :(

TPBM never neglects the plants.

Jun 25, 11:53am

"She Who Must Be Obeyed" is in that category. Three greenhouses and many gardens keep her busy AND very disgusted when the long legged rats (aka deer) have destroyed them.

TPBM has a cure for long legged rats that does not involve hunting (township does not allow it) or 8 ft high fences (ditto from the township again).

Jun 25, 7:15pm

I seem to remember that Our friend, WholeHouseLibrary, is something of a deer whisperer. Maybe he can help.

TPBM knows more than I do.

Editado: Jun 26, 1:55pm

Doubtful, good abbot. You are the veritable cornucopia of knowledge in the TPBM threads.

As for the deer, it's possible that one could purchase gallon jugs of coyote urine (from the Big Box hardware stores, I'm told. I've never used it, myself, but hear it's effective over time. Of course, you'll not want to use your yard after you do. I can't imagine how they collect and harvest it either, and really, I don't want to know.

As for the deer, I've had to stop feeding them. Rats. Not the expletive, the rodents. The deer would share the corn with rats that came within inches of their faces. Enough was enough. I still leave water out for the deer and any other critter that thirsts, but we're done as far as them giving away food meant only for them.
They're going through six gallons of water each night. Makes me think I should put out a third feed bowl of water for them. Two teeny, tiny fawns this year so far. Unsure whether they're twins as I've only seen them at some distance and they were in with the herd. Happy to report that Things 1 and 2 are doing well and often come to laze around in my yard during the heat of the day.

TPBM has got big plans for the weekend.

Jun 26, 7:05am

//>82 ulmannc: short of the 8ft fences, it's really difficult to deter them once they know where to find the goods. most people around here have not only tall but electrified fences, but the rabbits and groundhogs sometimes still get in. I have tried the predator pee that you can buy at garden stores, but it didn't work that well. i've had better luck hanging bars of soap and dryer sheets around; they don't like the soap smell//

Jun 28, 9:48am

Not big plans. I will probably have my family over for a picnic and then take Monday off as a vacation day so I can have a long weekend. I do need to paint my den sometime soon so I may start that too. Such exciting plans!!!

TPBM is so over the whole fireworks thing.

Jun 28, 10:08am

No, still a fan but official shows are scarce on the ground now that I'm in a rural area. When I lived in the high-rise in Alexandria, I could watch firework displays happening all up and down the Potomac river.

TPBM will go boating.

Jun 28, 1:31pm

Highly unlikely. In addition to the fact that I don't know anybody who owns even as much as a kayak, there's nothing but thunderstorms predicted in the area for every day for at least a week. Where there's thunder, there had been lightning. And I am firmly in the crazy, but not stupid column. At least, that's the word on the street.

TPBM's greatest personal athletic accomplishment was _______________.

Jun 28, 2:47pm

>88 WholeHouseLibrary: Hmmmm.....well I can think of a couple that would tie for first would be doing a solo night time climb (actually just a very stiff hike - there's a trail to the top but on that moonless night it was difficult to see where the edge of the trail ended and a possible fall began) of Mt. Fuji in October many years ago. I got to the top at 1 AM. It was very cold and all I had for additional protection were a pair of gloves, a sock cap, and a windbreaker. I found a spot out of the wind and ran in place for 3 1/2 hours until the sun came up.

They say the gods watch out for fools as long as they find them amusing.

TPBM has amused the gods on at least one memorable occasion.

Jun 28, 7:51pm

The "gods" wrote the message in Italian. We were in the Italian Dolomites and were past a point where our English (Roger Bacon) guidebook said there was no plants worth looking at beyond a particular gate because the goats and sheep had eaten everything. Being curious we went on. The trail split. One way was 10 km and the other way was 4 km. We went the short route.

Suffice it to say that the sign was translated for us AFTER we got to the bottom(the trail is considered precarious and dangerous). Not even the goats and sheep would use it as it was so steep and narrow. We dropped about 2000 m very rapidly. Once we got to the bottom we could hardly move. The leg pain lasted 3 days. We now know what a red dotted line trail means on a map in Italy! That was 30 years ago - - - that long ago?!

TBBM has had their own experience with red dotted . . .

Jun 29, 4:25am

Not red dotted exactly, but I was a parent chaperone on a 3-day trip for daughter's 4th grade class to the North Carolina coast in 2003. We visited Cape Hatteras Lighthouse and I made the mistake of climbing to the top. It took a while, and I was winded. My legs started hurting that Thursday night, ached all the next day, and finally fully cramped on Saturday. I felt every second of my 50 years. 257 steps, equivalent to climbing a 12-story building. Doubled of course...

TPBM has another experience with red dotted or 12-storied...

Jun 29, 7:17am

You all go ahead. I'm going to stay here and smoke a cigarette.

TPBM has done something else outrageously athletic.

Jun 29, 7:56am

yeh, in third grade I finally, after much frustration, climbed a rope to the top of the gym.

I know, pretty cool, right?!?!

TPBM can top that.

Jun 29, 9:05am

*sigh* No, not really. About a decade ago, I thought I'd cross the monkey bars at my son's kindergarten but I discovered I have no grip. I mean how can you have no grip?

But I was, at one point many years before that, winner of the Masters diving silver medal at the South of England championship (in my age group and we won't talk about how many other contestants there were).

TPBM lives on past glories.

Jun 30, 9:13am

No, but I miss some of the things I no longer seem to do, or can't do anymore.

TPBM finds listening to a nice steady rain helps them fall asleep.

Jun 30, 10:15am

Rain always knocks me out, it's as if I'd taken a pill or something. It's been that way with me since I was a kid. When I was about 8 we went to Hawaii. This massive deluge came through and I slept so soundly that my parents couldn't wake me up.

TPBM springs from healthful slumber fully refreshed.

Jul 4, 3:20am

Looks like none of us identify with this enviable situation. I usually sleep well and wake early but am far from bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. I really need those first couple of mugs of tea.

TPBM has found that Covid restrictions have been associated with more troubling and dramatic dreams.

Jul 4, 10:16am

I must admit to having a dream, twice with a few alterations in the last several months, where my daughter and I are trying to get back to one of the main roads here, on dirt roads, in my old Volvo, and always getting cut off and having nasty people act threateningly.

TPBM has happier dreams.

Jul 4, 1:46pm

Sometimes, and they all involve MrsHouseLibrary. Also, the bad dreams, but for different reasons.

I've been distracting myself lately with the itinerary for the Grand Tour. My high school class's 50th reunion was last year, (omit the obvious), so it's being rescheduled to the first weekend of October. I've decided to drive there (northern NJ) instead of flying and renting a car. I've expanded the plan to include places far and away from there, plus visit family and friends (including a few LTers - or is that LTites) along the way, or on the way back.
I figure, it's the last time I'll probably be able to do something like this, so I better do it big. The current route, which does not include a dip into west central Florida, is almost 6,000 miles. That's approximately 15 days of just driving and geocaching. This may take a while.

TPBM also has a tendency to make overly ambitious plans.

Editado: Jul 4, 11:32pm

Always. I’m trying to find the perfect spot for everything and organise the house. Mind you, we only moved in in 2007.

TPBM is beautifully organised (this does not include my husband’s solution of throwing everything not immediately necessary away).

Jul 5, 6:29am

At home, no. I moved here in March and it just occurred to me last week that I should be unpacking the big boxes first because they're full of stuff that needs to be placed, rather than the small boxes that are filled with things that go on things. At work I like to be so organized that my day goes like clockwork. This usually involves a lot of on-the-fly readjustment.

TPBM has prepared for any eventuality.

Jul 8, 9:43am

I can barely prepare for work the next day.

TPBM speaks two languages.

Jul 8, 10:22am

No, but my daughter can - English and music. I admire people who can read music and immediately translate those notes into actions to make the proper sounds come out.

TPBM just finished a book that is not one they would normally have even started and are surprised at how much they liked it.

Jul 8, 11:53am

I wish! Pretty much all my reading now and for the past couple of years has been very 'on brand'. By that, I mean cheesy mysteries and popular science writing.

TPBM just finished writing a book.

Editado: Jul 11, 8:14am

I did not, but I just had to verify my identity with the IRS which was only accomplished after much scribbling and travail. Does that count?

TPBM has a gizmo that fortells the future.

Editado: Jul 11, 2:05am

So, you wrote an autobiography? A memoir, perhaps?

That gizmo is called a brain, although Leroy Jethro Gibbs swears it's his guts.
We all have one,but no one is quite sure how to work it.

TPBM knows where the owner's manual is.

Editado: Jul 11, 12:36am

//>105 SomeGuyInVirginia: Ah, jeez. That reminds me. I'm way overdue on getting that done, too.

Is that a big issue this year? The IRS making people identify themselves?//

Jul 11, 2:37am

//>106 WholeHouseLibrary: ... waiting to find out ...//

Jul 11, 4:48am

There seem to be one or two on offer. How about this?

The Brain: A user’s manual

TPBM just wings it - never looks at the manual.

Jul 11, 9:52am

//>107 Morphidae: I don't think so. My taxes for last year were much more complicated than in years past. I think, at least I hope, the IRS just wanted to make sure it really was me. Not to worry (he said on the way to the gallows).//

Jul 11, 9:51pm

//>110 SomeGuyInVirginia: Ah, I think I know what happened. We didn't need to file for 2018 or 2019 but did for 2020 so MrMorphy could get his missing stimulus check.* I bet that set off a flag.

* They send his 1st and 3rd but not his 2nd?!? //

Jul 13, 9:13am

First I wing it. Then when it's not going right, I look at the manual.

TPBM thinks >99 WholeHouseLibrary: should keep us updated with postcards when he goes on his Grand Tour.

Jul 13, 12:21pm

I think I shall. Of course, they'll take the form of posts in a separated thread, and not necessarily daily. Drive time (400 - 500 miles/day), geocaching, journaling, determining the next day's route ... takes a lot of time - plus at least an hour a day playing the guitar, well, I'm pretty sure I'll skip a day or two here and there.
I'm going to cut about 1,400 miles of it off this weekend. The first leg of the trip was to visit my step-son and family in Sweetwater, and return/give them photo albums, some papers and mementos, and see them -- possibly for the last time. And Saturday night, it seems, is the only chance I'll get to see both of the granddaughters. Plus it'll give me more room in the car for other things I need to bring. There a pair of paintings done by my maternal grandmother's cousin/best friend, that my kids absolutely don't want. So, I'm giving them to my brother in Maine, who will eventually pass them down to his son and grandson. That grandson -- not quite a year old, and more than three feet tall.

One Two more things - I've got ten more pages in my current blank book that I use for journaling. I use both sides of the page (eventually) and keep a table of contents for a synopsis of what I wrote on a particular day. The writing pages get numbered, and the TOC pages are alphabetic. The last page is A, the penultimate page is B, etc. until the numbered pages meet the lettered pages, then I turn the book upside down and continue in that manner until I fill up the book. I just bought book #6, which will begin with The Grand Tour.

And that reminds me, I must bring a few extra cartridges for my fountain pen. Had to order the current batch online because it's impossible to find the ones I need in any store anymore. I get about 15 pages per cartridge.

TPBM has realized that I tend to be ... chatty.

Jul 13, 12:43pm

It's fascinating to those of us who can't do all the words and stuff as well as that...

I'm in awe of anyone who can stick to journaling to that extent!

TPBM is more prolific.

Jul 13, 2:58pm


TPBM is ____.

Jul 13, 3:07pm

... laughing.

TPBM feels _____________. (And really, don't hold back.)

Jul 13, 4:51pm


Had my vaccine a while ago but even so am more at risk of dying of COVID than an unvaccinated 30 year-old. Exponential rise in COVID infections here in the UK. All restrictions lifted next week so I’m keeping my head down. No Freedom Day for me!

TPBM will cross their fingers.

Jul 13, 5:05pm

//>113 WholeHouseLibrary: Don't suppose you have a stop in the Twin Cities/Minnesota planned?//

Jul 13, 7:47pm

I could, but I don't see what difference it would make. I'm not at all a believer in superstitions, that I'm aware of.
But, I tried just for you, good abbot, and alas, I'm afraid the best I can do is to get the middle to almost lay atop the index finger, but not cross. Too much guitar playing, I guess. Or age. Or both.

>118 Morphidae: Considering that one of my destinations is Crazy Horse (was there in 1993; want to see how things have progressed,) and then head east, I'll be doing that on Rte 90; no reason I can't hang a left when I get to Alberta Lea.
Or maybe head to Austin and cut the diagonal.
Let's do it.

TPBM can touch the tip of their nose with their tongue.

Jul 14, 7:52am

>119 WholeHouseLibrary: I can! I can!

I have to wonder how many of us got our upper lip/under nose area soaked attempting this feat?


TPBM tried to touch their tongue to their nose and failed.

Editado: Jul 14, 7:54am

//>120 Morphidae: Ha! I got as far as...

"... tried to touch their nose to their...."

...before realizing there was something wrong. LOL! //

Editado: Jul 14, 9:07am

//>117 abbottthomas: Fingers, toes, and eyes. It's not a pretty picture. Of course you have to make it through the pandemic, what would we do without you? With the vaccine and our lovely thoughts, if you do succumb to the virus it would just be willful obstinancy on your part.//

>119 WholeHouseLibrary: I used to could.

TPBM still can _____.

Jul 14, 9:42am

Sit up and take nourishment. Oh, and ride a bicycle, because you know what they say about riding a bicycle.

TPBM knows what "they" say.

Jul 14, 9:46am

yep 'watch out where those huskies go and don't you eat that yellow snow".

Still good advice.

TPBM isn't inclined.

Jul 14, 12:08pm

I’m in the mountains… well, hills. Of course I incline. I was just up on the roof and inclining like crazy.

TPBM has been on a hot tin roof.

Editado: Jul 14, 1:13pm

//Mine in >120 Morphidae: got skipped?

We don't have to go back but I still want to know who tried...//

Jul 14, 5:32pm

//I tried, Morphy, and touched my nose between my nostrils. I feel like I accomplished something.//

Editado: Jul 15, 2:13am

>125 2wonderY: I've been on hot roofs, but not made of tin. I am so much not a Pet Person that I would never emulate one, even a literary one. (also one of the many reasons I never saw "Cats" -- the play nor the movie.

My particular hot roof was one that covered the chicken coop addition (part of the original structure) of the barn in my parent's back yard. Originally, the property was an apple orchard with the owner's house up front. The roof of that chicken coup was rotting, even the joists, so my father and I -- and I'll never know why none of my many other siblings were involved -- tore off the shingles, removed the felt, the decking and the rafters, then replaced then all -- on a cloudless, breezeless Saturday in late July in New Jersey. Rafters in place, decking firmly attached, we rolled out and cut full lengths of felt and sat the 5-galllon black metal buckets of tar on them -- to help the paper lay flat, and to soften the tar.
Then we took a break. Went to the house, made some lunch, and before we got back to work, Dad -- who rarely drank, but when he did, used a ceramic mug shaped and glazed to look like Friar Tuck, which he then placed into the freezer, along with a beer (Knickerbocker, I think,) and can of Pepsi for me. He also juiced a lemon and that went into the refrigerator. After that, we returned to the barn, bringing an oven thermometer and the kitchen timer, which he set for 45 minutes.
We applied the tar, laid out an entire length of felt, tapped in some roofing nails and repeated the process until the entire roof was covered. We had to wear gloves to keep our hands from getting burned, and kneeling to drive in a nail was torture. And then we did it again with actual roofing material -- black. And we went five minutes beyond the timer.
That oven thermometer -- it read 145°.

Back at the house, the Pepsi came out of the can like slush, and Dad poured the lemon juice on it. He also poured his beer into his mug, and we stood outside to quench ourselves. He took a couple of gulps, I imagine, and immediately, I could smell beer in the air, and I wasn't all that close to him.
And that homemade lemon Pepsi -- best damn soda I've ever had -- and the scent of lemon permeated from my pores.

TPBM has been in even hotter environs.

Jul 14, 11:49pm

// >120 Morphidae: Nah, didn’t even bother. Been there, done that before. //

Jul 19, 9:36am

Ugh, I can't begin to imagine what tarring a roof is like in summer. I was in Las Vegas once when the high was supposed to reach 116°. I walked out of the hotel and remember thinking that it felt very pleasant. Of course it was 10:00 a.m., there's no humidity whatsoever, and I was in the shade. By noon it was just dangerously hot. I went into a hotel to buy tickets to see Al Green perform that night. The guy behind the counter asked how he could help me, and all I could say was, 'It's hotter than the freaking sun out there! Two tickets please.'

TPBM has been over the moon.

Editado: Jul 22, 8:40am

No, but I've been around the block a few times.

//>128 WholeHouseLibrary: that reminded me of the scene in Shawshank Redemption of Andy getting them cold beer after they tarred the prison roof. So of course I had to watch the movie again to see that part. Oh Andy, Andy, Andy.//

TPBM has a movie they could watch over and over.

Jul 22, 9:41am

Quite a few, actually - Damn Yankees, Bringing Up Baby, Guys and Dolls, Independence Day, etc.

TPBM has a TV series they could watch over and over.

Editado: Jul 22, 12:01pm

>132 karenmarie: Not me, but my husband has seen the original Star Trek so many times that all you need to do is show a clip a few seconds long and he can not only tell you the episode title and plot, he also can give you the names of guests stars and various bits of trivia.

TPBM has a favorite LP/CD (digital album if they must) they could listen to over and over.

Jul 22, 2:01pm

//your husband should meet my husband, Morphy - they'd be in hog heaven talking about Star Trek. Even now my husband will see an actress/actor in another series (before ST or after ST), recognize them, and show me what they looked like on that Star Trek episode and what their character name was. Boggles the mind.//

Jul 22, 2:01pm

Well, I have one CD that has a specific instrumental piece that I use to help me get through the times of unbearable grief that still occur since the death of MrsHouseLibrary. It's actually the opening and closing piece of music in a movie called Arrival, staring Amy Adams, who in many ways, reminds me too much of her. They look, sound, and behave (in real life) more like each other that Karrell's actual siblings do. Seriously, looking at them, you'd never imagine they were related to each other at all.

The piece is titled "On the Nature of Daylight" featured three times with variations on a double CD called The Blue Notebooks by Max Richter. I'll loop one 6-minute track and just let it repeat for hours, overnight if necessary. Cathartic. Two cellos, two violas, and one violin.
There are a few versions of it on that you-tube site, one of which I'm listening to now -- it's 21 minutes long! Gorgeous piece of music!

TPBM listens to ___________ for on-the-road music. (Example: Tom Petty wrote a song about listening to "Runaway" by Del Shannon - with the volume cranked way up - while cruising down the highway. Both of those are excellent on-the-road tunes.)

Jul 22, 8:27pm

Podcasts. Especially those podcasts about books no longer in print, like Slightly Foxed or Backlisted. If neither of those serve, then anything by Aretha Franklin recorded before 1980. At defening levels.

TPBM saw Aretha Franklin in concert.

Jul 23, 8:03am

No - I've seen some of the great ones but haven't been quite that lucky.

Actually one of the best concerts I've ever seen was Neil Diamond. He's quite a showman and keeps the audience engaged the whole time. (actually I can say the same about King Diamond....)

TPBM has eclectic taste.

Editado: Jul 23, 8:52pm

>137 Darth-Heather: Oh, yes. My favorite is popular music from all the decades from the 40s to the 20s, especially the 60s - 90s.

Ella Fitzgerald, Glenn Miller, Nat King Cole, Elvis Presley, The Beatles, The Monkees, Simon & Garfunkel, Aretha Franklin, The Beach Boys, The Mamas & The Papas, The Jackson 5, Paul Simon, ELO, Queen, Elton John, Billy Joel, Madonna, Phil Collins, Prince, Paula Abdul, The Bangles, Janet Jackson, Journey, Tina Turner, Backstreet Boys, Salt 'n Peppa, Gloria Estefan, No Doubt, Shania Twain, Christina Aguilera, Alanis Morisette, Jewel, Natalie Merchant, Rihanna, Maroon 5, Alicia Keys, Lady Gaga, Justin Timberlake, Pink, Norah Jones, Amy Winehouse, Destiny's Child, Katy Perry, Avril Lavigne, Taylor Swift, Bruno Mars, Adele, Beyoncé, Billie Eilish, Little Nas X

But I also like Classical, Disney, Showtunes, Movie Soundtracks, Adult Contemporary, Guitar Rock, 60s - 80s Rock, "Yacht" Rock, plus some Country, some Hip Hop, some old Rap (not any new stuff), some Punk, some Alternative, some Blues, some Punk, some Funk, some Disco, some Techo, some Gospel, some New Wave, some New Age, a little of this, a little of that...

TPBM has a wide food palate (unlike me, I'm picky.)

Jul 23, 11:44pm

Not at all. In fact, it is undoubtedly quite narrower than yours. Remove all red and most purple fruits and vegetables, all forms of onion, pepper, garlic, most spices and herbs, alcohol, an anything high in tannic acid. All deadly to me. Caffeine though ... my doctor says I have too much blood in my caffeine system. I'm perfectly fine with oranges, lemons, vinegar. Go figure.
I recently learned of someone who became allergic to celery.
Sure hope I didn't violate a HIPPA law there!

TPBM can digest cast iron.