Friday, March 30, 2012

Hopping Through the Alphabet

Thought for the day:  You don't have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body.  [C.S. Lewis]  A little bit of change is good for the soul.  [me]

Baby bunnies #1 and #2
Yep, change.

That's my way of saying I was too lazy I've been too darned busy no typical Friday megapost this week. And not for a while. Gonna take a hiatus from them until at least May, when we'll pick back up with the state of New Jersey.

In the meantime, our grandchildren in Alabama got their bunnies. (If you don't know what I'm talking about, you can get the full poop on this past Monday's post.)

Bunny #3

Bunny #4
Cute, aren't they? Especially the first two; they're not much more than little balls of fur. Looks like the other two are in the kitchen. Naaaah, they're not gonna be at all spoiled, I'm sure.

[Let's hope the number STAYS at four. If not, I'll let ya know.]

Have you guys been noticing this badge on a lot of blogs lately? I know some of you are planning to participate in the challenge, but for those who aren't, I figured I'd give y'all a heads up.

Starting this coming Sunday, the first of April (no fooling!) all of the A-Z participants will be doing a post about something beginning with the letter A. Then, each subsequent day, will be doing a post based on something beginning with the next letter of the alphabet, until we run the full gamut. So that'll be twenty-six days of posting, (no more Sunday posts after the first one) which is considerably more than some of us usually do in a month. (like me) Should be fun, though. There are  more than fourteen hundred participants signed up so far, who will be in a frenzy visiting as many of the other participating blogs each day as they can. (If you're interested in joining the insanity fun, you can register up until the second of April.) So, we should have a lot more comments to keep up with than usual, and a lot more other blogs to read than usual, but I'll do my best to keep up with all of you guys, my usual blogger buddies. Except for in the middle of the month. Gonna be spending time with some dear friends we haven't seen in several years then, so phooey on the computer while we're hanging out with them. 

Some of the A-Z participants have selected a theme for all their posts. Mine is amateur radio. I hope you find the subject interesting enough to stick with me through April's madness, but if not, I'll catch y'all in May.

                                          Until then, take care of yourselves. And each other.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

For Faithful Friends, Part II

Thought for the day:  The greatest pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with him and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself, too.  [Samuel Butler]

This was our spoiled rotten, loved-her-to-pieces pooch Dixie. Part chihuahua, and part toy manchester, she was a really teeny tiny thing when we brought her home.

Matter of fact, she stayed pretty small. But she had a big loving heart.

Ready to look at some more faithful dog pics?

What could we possible do to deserve this kind of loyalty?

So, have you ever had a dog who comforted you when you were feeling low? Who was a friend when you most needed one? Who let you cry, and made you laugh? Who sat with you in the dark when you couldn't sleep? Who sympathized and comforted you when you were in pain? We sure are lucky, aren't we?

Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Spring Has Sprung!

Thought for the day:  The other day when I was walking through the woods, I saw a rabbit standing in front of a candle making shadows of people on a tree.  [Stephen Wright]

It's that time of year again. As I type this, it's March 20, the first official day of spring. HA! As if the calendar meant diddly squat to Mother Nature. I can tell you, without doubt, spring unofficially blustered into Georgia weeks ago.

Record high temperatures in the mid-eighties.

And wipe your eyes and blow your noses ...record high pollen counts coming atchoo, too. Yesterday hit a staggering 8164 particles per cubic meter of air, which tops the previous record by more than 2000. Believe me, that's nothing to sneeze at. So to speak.

Yep, it's deja-choo all over again. Atlanta is a beautiful place in the springtime, as long as you don't mind shoveling pollen and chewing every breath you take. Ah well. On a Claritan day, you can see forever. And on the bright side, I'm expecting the crime rate to plummet. Everybody's too busy sneezing to be bothered with criminal activites. And this is just the beginning. The calendar says so.

A couple weekends ago, my husband and I spent the day with our son and his family in Alabama. My daughter-in-law decided she wants to get each of the children a baby rabbit, so my hubby and son spent the day making a huge cage for them.

"Four rabbits?" I asked.

"Uh-huh," my DIL replied. "Three for the big kids, and one for me. When Devyn gets a little older, the fourth one will be hers."

"You planning on putting partitions in that cage?" I asked. "Y'know, to keep four from turning into forty?"

"Oh, no," my sweet naive DIL said. "We'll just get them all the same sex."

It isn't easy to differentiate baby bunny gender, but we'll see how well that turns out. As for me, I'm pollen for a happy outcome.

Okay, no more deja-choo or pollen nonsense, but how about a little deja-vu? Thinking about our grandkids and their soon-to-be pet rabbits reminded me of a post I wrote last April, entitled Lessons From a Killer Rabbit. I decided to toss it atchoo (sorry ... last time, I promise) again for those of you (most of you) who missed it the first time around:

Thought for the day:  The Energizer Bunny was arrested. He was charged with battery,

Got an early wake-up call of the wild this morning.

You're nobody 'til somebody loves you.
 It was a woodpecker,  imitating a miniature jack hammer on the tree outside our bedroom window. His serenade only lasted for about fifteen minutes, but his presence reminded me of another wacky woodpecker who spent the entire summer here some years back. In fact, he was here so much we gave him a name. We called him Clem.

Now, I've been told that male woodpeckers pound out their jazzy rhythms in the early hours of the morning in order to attract a mate. Don't know it that's entirely true or not, but let's say that it is. And if it is, poor old Clem was sorrowfully unlucky in love.

Because he didn't just show up and rat-a-tat for fifteen minutes just before the sun came up. Oh, no. Clem was an industious and rather desperate suitor, and showed up several hours before daybreak, and rat-a-tatted his heart out for one or two hours every morning. On trees. On the gutters. On a fiberglass canoe. If it wasn't moving, our little visitor took a whack at it. If nothing else, he was persistent. But, alas,  I don't think he ever found love. He eventually stopped coming around, but  I fear the crumpled zig-zag beak he must have had held little appeal for the fairer sex.

Back to this morning. After the woodpecker finished his drum solo, the cats took over. If you have cats, I'm sure you're familiar with the routine. There's the piling-on game, the nose-rubbing and purring-in-your-ear game, the patty-cake game, and let us not forget the rousing round of king of the mountain, where you, of course, are the mountain. All designed, of course, to get their staff out of bed and into the kitchen.

I took all of this as an omen that it was time to write another blog about lessons I've learned from our pets. We've already talked a little bit about cats in the past, and about fish, but today, we're going to talk about rabbits.

Let me preface the lessons learned with a lesson of a different kind, a history lesson. About Jimmy Carter and the killer rabbit.

In 1979, President Jimmy Carter went fishing in Plains, Georgia. While out in his row boat, enjoying a peaceful respite from the White House, his serenity was shattered by a rabbit and a pack of dogs. The dogs were doing what dogs do. They were chasing the rabbit. But this rabbit didn't do what one would expect a rabbit to do. This rabbit jumped into the water, hissing and gnashing its teeth, and swam towards the president's boat. Though the president said he didn't have any experience with out-of-control animals, he successfully shooed it away by splashing water at it with a paddle. As you can imagine, if you don't already remember the incident, the media had a field day. "President Attacked by Killer Rabbit" was a common headline around the country. Late night comics took the story and ran with it, and poor President Carter became a laughing stock. If you do a google search now, you can actually find pictures of the rabbit, and of President Carter shooing it away from his boat, but they weren't made available at the time. But I, for one, didn't need to see any pictures to believe the president's story, because I'm pretty sure we ended up with the spawn of that killer rabbit.

My daughter had a pet rabbit. It was a precious little bit of fur with a tiny pink nose when we first brought it home, but here are some of the lessons we learned from owning that rabbit:

  • Precious little bits of fur with tiny pink noses grow up to be big fat rabbits. With sharp claws.
  • All big fat rabbits do is eat and generate a big fat ton of hoodles.
  • Little girls don't like to clean up hoodles.
  • I don't like to clean them up, either.
  • Rabbits don't like you to put halters and leashes on them.
  • Rabbits have very sharp claws.
  • Once the halter and leash are attached, rabbits are lousy at taking walks. They hop. Very leisurely. Because they have to eat every green thing in sight. And, of course, drop hoodles.
  • Rabbits don't like you to take halters and leashes off of them.
  • Did I mention they have very sharp claws?
  • If he ever hopped away from home, (no such luck!) we would have been able to find him quite easily. Hansel and Gretel had nothing on him. He could leave a steady two-mile trail of turds.
  • Here's the funny part. The mountain of rabbit poop that critter generated was useless as fertilizer.

I don't remember what our daughter called that rabbit. Something cutesie like Fluffy. But after a few weeks of shoveling his poop, I started calling him Hoodles, and that stuck. Oh, and on second thought, maybe he wasn't related to President Carter's rabbit, after all. When we tossed him into the lake, he didn't swim.

Just kidding. We ended up donating him to the Yellow River Game Ranch, where he lived out the rest of his life with a bunch of other rabbits, eating, generating hoodles, and ... um... multiplying.

Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other. Oh, and I know some people have rabbits that make wonderful pets. My sister-in-law had one. Ours, however,  wasn't the cuddly type. And I might have mentioned? He had very sharp claws.

No trees were killed in the sending of this message. However, a large number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.

I hope you enjoyed the re-run. For some reason, the song Doing What Comes Naturally is running through my head. Maybe because rabbits typically do a LOT of what comes naturally? Maybe we'll get lucky. Maybe our grandchildren's bunnies will be all the same sex. Or maybe doing  it won't be so natural to them at all.

Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Well, Blow Me Down!

Thought for the day:  How'd you like to gather your food by drilling through thirty-six inches of ice and then sit there all day hoping it will swim by? 

Winters are pretty harsh in New Hampshire. Lots of ice fishing and skiing, though. The only trouble with that is, as Dave Barry says: The problem with winter sports is that, follow me closely here, they generally take place in winter.

Right. Lots of cold weather. But like most of the New England states, autumn foliage is supposed to be breath-taking. Too short-lived, maybe, but beautiful, with brilliant colors and clean crisp air. (Which all too soon turns to clean crisp snow.) And there's lots of scenic places, lots of covered wooden bridges and lots of beautiful old homes. The Cornish-Windsor Bridge over the Connecticut River stretches 460 feet, making it the second-longest covered wooden bridge in the country. (Spoilsport Ohio stole the title when it built a longer one in 2006.) Plus, you can go whale watching in New Hampshire. That's GOTTA be cool. (Okay ... COLD.)

A couple very quick tidbits before moving on to look at some pictures: New Hampshire is the only state that ever played host for the formal conclusion of a foreign war. In 1905, a treaty ending the  Russo-Japanese War was signed in Portsmouth. If you ever want someone to blame when your alarm clock oh-so-rudely tears you away from a delightful dream, blame it on Levi Hutchins of Concord, who invented that heartless instrument back in 1787.

The building in this picture is the Mt. Washington Hotel, and in the background is Mt. Washington itself, the site of the highest wind velocity ever recorded in North America. Would you believe 231 MPH, with gusts even HIGHER? That was back in 1934. During a typical winter, Mt. Washington often claims the coldest temperature of the day.

Ya gotta love a place with its own Trojan horse. This one, ten feet tall, is located in Gossville.

But that isn't the only kind of horse you'll find in New Hampshire. Merrimack, a Bavarian-style hamlet, is home to the famous Anheiser-Busch Clydesdale training team. They may not be as tall as the Trojan horse, but they ARE six feet tall to the shoulder.

The Memorial Bell Tower at the Cathedral of the Pines in Rindge has four bronze  bas-reliefs that were designed by Norman Rockwell, and sculpted by his son Peter. The bell tower is specifically dedicated to women -- military and civilian -- who died while serving their country.

America's Stonehenge, located on Mystery Hill in Salem, truly is a mystery. The stone ruins found here are a mixture of prehistoric wonders, standing stones, stone chambers, and sighting stones that show sunrise and sunset on summer and winter solstices. Some of the ruins are an estimated four thousand years old, but who built them will forever remain a mystery.

The Old Man of the Mountain was one of New Hampshire's iconic symbols. This natural formation was carved by receding glaciers ten thousand years ago, and gazed out from twelve hundred feet above Echo Lake. It measured forty feet from the chin to the forehead, and was made up of five ledges. Notice all the past tense verbs? That's because the old man collapsed in 2003.

The McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center, located in Concord, includes interactive exhibits on aviation, astronomy, earth and space sciences, as well as a state-of-the-art planetarium. The Christa McAuliffe Planetarium is named in honor of, and dedicated to, the New Hampshire teacher who died in the space shuttle Challenger explosion. As you may have guessed,  astronaut Alan Shepard was also a New Hampshire native.

Daniel Webster's boyhood home.

How about THIS place? An honest-to-goodness castle! Kimball Castle is located in Gilford, and sits atop Locke Hill overlooking a lake. Looks like the perfect setting for a novel, doesn't it? There's supposed to be a forest beside it, too, so it's like a remote little kingdom. And guess what? It's for sale! For seven hundred forty-nine thousand dollars. (But you could offer 'em seven ... ) Alas, no moat, but wow, what a neat place. Might be a little chilly on that hilltop come wintertime, but I'll betcha there's plenty of fireplaces inside.

Intriguing marker, isn't it? In case you can't read it, this memorial calls Arthur Farnsworth the keeper of stray ladies, and is dedicated by a grateful one. Story time: when Bette Davis was a big star, she escaped from Hollywood to Sugar Hill, New Hampshire to find peace and quiet, and ended up finding herself a husband and a home. She purchased a place called Butternut, and became quite smitten with Farnsworth, caretaker of a nearby inn. Allegedly, she deliberately strayed while on an outing just so he would come to her rescue. Not only did he come to her rescue, but he courted her tirelessly until they married. Unfortunately, he died just three years later, and she put this marker up in his memory.

Okay, time to leave the pictures and take a look at some of the laws.
  • You may not tap your feet, nod your head, or in any way keep time to the music in a tavern, restaurant, or cafe. (Must be some pretty lousy music.)
  • You cannot sell the clothes you are wearing to pay off a gambling debt. (Guess no one's allowed to lose his shirt from gambling.)
  • It's against the law to check into a hotel under an assumed name. (What if your names really ARE John and Mary Doe?)
  • It's illegal to pick up seaweed on the beach.
  • Any cattle that cross state roads must be fitted with a device to gather their feces. (I don't wanta change those diapers!)
  • You may not run any machinery on Sundays.
  • It's also against the law for citizens to look up while relieving themselves on a Sunday. (Pious peeing only.)
  • In Claremont, it's illegal to get drunk or picnic in a cemetery, or to enter at night, or for children under ten to enter unattended.
  • In White Mountain National, any person caught raking the beaches, picking up litter, hauling away trash, building a bench for the park, or many other kind things better have a permit. Otherwise, the do-gooder can be slapped with a $150 fine for (ready?) maintaining the national park without a permit.
Okay, here we go, boys and girls, the moment you've all been waiting for. (Right?) Time for (ta-DA!)

The Weirdest News Stories of the Week

***  A new Smithsonian-affiliated National Atomic Testing Museum will be opening in Las Vegas on March 26. The question is: will it actually answer any of the questions long associated with nearby area 51, or will it simply capitalize on the rumors to sell tickets? I dunno, but it does sound intriguing. Especially the dedicated Area 51: Myth or Reality exhibit. Here's a wee promotional snippet about the new museum:

*** When I was a young girl, my favorite aunt would draw a hula dancer on my knee, and then I'd make it "dance" by jiggling my knee. I forgot all about that until  I saw an article the other day about a new vibrating tattoo. How cool is that? A hula dancer who could really jiggle her hips? Nah. Nothing quite that moving. But Nokia has come up with a technology where ferromagnetic inks, coupled with a newly patented substance, would actually vibrate in response to a cellphone or text message signal. I suppose that would be less distracting than a ringtone, but I don't know about that shades of bionic man vibrating skin stuff. Unless, of course, the tattoo were a hula dancer.

Not much else happening this week in the realm of weird news stories, unless you count the clueless cocaine smuggler nabbed in Washington state while riding in an SUV bearing a vanity license plate reading SMUGLER, while heading to the Smuggler's Inn to make the deal. (I kid you not.)

 In addition to the high temperatures and high pollen counts already experienced  this year, we've also had some pretty windy days. Not nearly as windy as Mt. Washington, but almost windy enough to blow me down. Yep, windy enough ... about as windy as this:

                               [A one and a two, all together now: All we are is ducks in the wind ...]

                                      Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

For Faithful Friends, Part I

Thought for the day:  Labradors are lousy watchdogs. They usually bark when there is a stranger about, but it is an expression of unmitigated joy at the chance to meet somebody new, not a warning. [Norman Strung]

That's a picture of me with our family's first dog, not that I can remember him. His name was Tippy, and my mother told me he was so timid, she had to stand over him with a stick while he ate, so other animals wouldn't steal his food. So, I don't suppose he was much of a watchdog, either.

But there's something extra special about a dog, is there? In fact, some may say If there is no heaven for dogs, then I want to go where they go when I die.

I think there are valid reasons to call them man's best friend. What else is so faithful, so loyal? Let's explore that sentiment through pictures, shall we?

Do you remember the first dog YOU loved?

Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Don't Shoot the Cat!

Thought for the day: A word is not a crystal, transparent and unchanged, it is the skin of a living thought and may vary greatly in color and content, according to the circumstances and the time in which it is used.  [Oliver Wendell Holmes]

Okay, so English may not be the gentlest, kindest kid on the block. It steals from other languages, and protects Arbitrary Rules by stabbing Logic right through the heart.

Difficult to learn, perhaps, but oh so easy to love.

So shoot me. I like words.

Language is the dress of thoughts.  [Samuel Johnson]

Which is why I'm so psyched about Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue. 

Here's an original

No,  I wasn't looking for new ways to be vulgar. Granted, the preface DOES allow that the book can teach men to talk bawdy before their papas without fear of detection, and abuse their less spirited companions, but that certainly wasn't the reason I ordered it. No. Of course not. It was done purely in the name of intellectual research. How about you? Curious about some of the words in this dictionary?

Broadly speaking, the short words are the best, and the old words, best of all. [Winston Churchill]

Well, Winnie, these words are definitely old:
  • abbess:  mistress of a brothel
  • ace of spades:  a widow
  • all-a-mort:  to be struck dumb
  • babes in the wood:  criminals in stocks or pillory (Interesting how the meaning of this expression has changed, isn't it?)
  • blind cupid:  backside
  • bob tail:  a lewd woman or impotent man
  • bread and butter fashion:  one atop the other, as in John and his maid were found lying bread and butter fashion.
  • cat: common prostitute 
  • cold pig:  a punishment for sluggards who lie in bed too long. The bedclothes are pulled off, and cold water is thrown on them.
  • dugs:  a woman's breasts
  • elbow shaker:  a dice player
  • flash the hash:  vomit
  • glazier:  someone who breaks windows to steal goods for sale (Another one whose meaning has morphed.)
  • gospel shop:  church
  • hempen widow:  one whose husband was hanged
  • oven:  great mouth
  • rum doxy:  fine wench
  • shoot the cat:  vomit from too much liquor
  • snoozing ken:  brothel
  • strip me naked:  gin
  • twiddle diddles:  testicles
  • twiddle poop:  effeminate-looking man
Euphemisms are unpleasant truths wearing diplomatic cologne.  [Quentin Crisp]

That's just a sampling of some of the euphemisms and cool expressions in this dictionary. What's really cool is this book, which was a big hit when written by Francis Grose in 1811, is once again available.  Whether you're like me, and just get a kick out of exploring the changes in our language, or if you're writing a book that takes place in that time period,  it's a terrific reference book. (And I got my e-version through Amazon for FREE!) 

I personally believe we developed language because of our deep inner need to complain. [Jane Wagner]

                                                            Nah, no complaints here.

                                    Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Silver, Gold, and the Scent of Piety

Thought for the day:  Las Vegas: all the amenities of modern society in a habitat unfit to grow a tomato.  [Jason Love]

Death Valley. 
If you don't much care for rain, Nevada may be the state for you. Man has manipulated the heck out of its terrain and tried to fool nature by building a huge dam and man-made lake, but deep down, it's a desert oasis that only averages about seven inches of rain per year. Which explains why camels were used as pack animals there for so many years.

On the other hand, Elko holds an annual national Cowboy Poetry Gathering, and until it closed a few years ago, there was a museum in Nevada dedicated solely to the life and times of Liberace. See? Culture. And the town of Henderson holds a three-day Native American Arts Festival every year, too. Culture out the wazoo. Did you know Nevada's the country's number one producer of silver and gold? Of course, it also relieves a lot of tourists of silver and gold, too, but that's another story. A good bit of the state actually belongs to the federal government, and more than 80% of it is designated for public and recreational use. One final tidbit before we look at some pictures: in 1864, the entire text of the Nevada state constitution was sent from Carson City to Washington, D.C. via Morse code, making it what must have been the mother of all all-day telegrams.

Ready to take a virtual tour now? Better gas up first. Lots of long stretches of what's dubbed the loneliest road in the world with little to see but sand and mountains.

You've probably heard of Area 51 before. That's the (hush-hush) top secret area of Nellis Air Force Range and Nuclear Test Site, which is rumored to have been used to house UFOs and conduct alien research.

And while I have no interest in nosing around any (hush-hush) top secret locations where my presence wouldn't be welcomed, I wouldn't mind visiting the nearby Little Ale Inn advertised on this sign. The locals are probably a little tired of the tourists wanting to hear all about area 51, but they might as well have a little fun and capitalize on the rumors. Wouldn't you love to see what that place has on its menu? (Mars bars for dessert, maybe?)

Hoover Dam, the largest public works project ever undertaken in the United States, took a workforce of 21,000 men five years to accomplish. Construction worker hardhats were invented specifically for this workforce, but weren't invented until 1934, just a year before the project's completion. Something tells me a lot of workers were seriously injured prior to their invention.

Death Valley has a certain stark beauty at sunrise. Would you believe one of the critters that lives there ... the kangaroo rat ... can live its entire life without a single drop of liquid? (Of course, I have no idea how long it actually lives ...)

Nope, I didn't skip the country. This is Las Vegas, baby, where they like to say, "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas." From what I've heard, the thing that most often stays in Vegas is your money.

But, just look at this place! It's like a Fantasyland for grown-ups. Talk about sensory overload. (I wonder where Rick's pawn shop is.)

But THIS is what I really think of when I think of Vegas: NEON. Lots of glitz and glamour. Big shows, and cheap food. Limos and high rollers. I would enjoy looking around just to ooh and ah at all the sights. The gambling might be fun, but I doubt if they play many quarter-limit bets there.

No surprise, but the first slot machine was invented in Las Vegas. That was back in 1899, by a fellow named Thomas Fey. For you trivia buffs, that machine was called Liberty Bell. (Yeah, it liberated people from their money ... they aren't called bandits for nothing!) Nowadays, this self-proclaimed entertainment and gambling capital of the world has more than 200,000 slot machines, and allegedly has more hotel rooms than anyplace else on earth. (Dunno about Mars.) I don't know if the state has ever had to resort to this or not, but supposedly, to break a tie in the state's gubernatorial race, the winner would be determined by a single cut of the cards.

The difference between Las Vegas and Atlantic City is the difference between getting conned by a beautiful call girl and getting mugged by a crack head.   [Drew Carey]

Nevada's Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park is built around the fossilized remains of (what else?) an ichthyosaur, and an old well-preserved silver mining camp. A bit of diversity there.

And then there's another kind of critter altogether. Mustangs. Yeah, that's it, mustangs.

Nevada is the only state with legalized prostitution, and the Mustang Ranch, its first legal brothel. Its original owner Joe Conforte, made billions of dollars, which he (ahem) chose not to share with Uncle Sam. Tax evasion, a murder, and other scandals closed the place down for a while, but it's now reopened, and I assume, faring well.

Ever been anyplace like that before? No, of course not. Care to take a little peek inside, just out of curiosity? (Don't worry; I won't tell anybody you looked.)

One thing I found kinda funny while I was looking for a tour video. There's also a brothel called the Chicken Ranch, and another called The Bunny Ranch. Mustangs? Chickens? Bunnies? Never mind.

Okay, let's check out the laws. For a state known for legal prostitution and gambling, their laws have gotta be pretty liberal, right? We'll see.

  • It's illegal to drive a camel on the highway. (Hard to fit them in most cars, anyway.)
  • But it isn't illegal to hang someone for shooting your dog on your property. (Kinda like killing rats?)
  • While the legislature is in session, it's against the law for any of its members to conduct official business while wearing a penis costume. (They can ACT like 'em, but they can't LOOK like 'em. Got it.)
  • Chocolate is banned between February 21 and April 8. (Bad, bad law.)
  • In Elko, everyone walking in the street is required to wear a mask. (I wonder what kinda mask they'd wear with those penis costumes?)
  • In Eureka, men with moustaches are forbidden from kissing women. 
  • In Las Vegas, it's against the law to pawn your dentures. (Now, there's a law to sink your teeth into.)
  • In Nyala, a man is forbidden from buying drinks for more than three people other than himself at a time.
  • In Reno, it's illegal to lie down on the sidewalk.
  • It's also illegal to hold a marathon dance, but it isn't against the law to post a notice on a fire hydrant about that dance. (And this makes sense because ...???)
  • And it's against the law to hide a spray-painted grocery cart in your basement. (Leave it out in the yard.)
  • Or to be named Smith.
  • Benches may not be placed in the middle of the street, either.
  • And last but not least for Reno, sex toys are against the law. (I'm not touching that one.)
Okay, boys and girls, it's that time again. Time for (ta-DA!)

The Weirdest News Stories of the Week

***  It seems designer clothes and the rich trappings and pomp associated with pope-dom aren't enough for Pope Benedict XVI. He commissioned Italian perfumer Silvana Casoli to design a scent for his very own exclusive use. Casoli has created signature scents for multiple celebrities before, like Sarah Jessica Parker, Sting, King Juan Carlos, and Madonna ... and even created a couple scents called Water of Hope and Water of Faith for a group of Catholic bishops, but I'm thinking this is probably the first time a pope has ever requested a designer smell. The perfumer says she aimed for a scent to capture the pontiff's personality, as well as an aura of peace and tranquility, and infused it with lemon tree blossoms and the smell of grass. No announcement yet as to what the name is gonna be for the pope's personal perfume, and even though the scent sounds real nice, I can't help but wonder what kind of price tag was attached to such an exclusive product. And what a waste, huh? I mean, everybody knows most 84-year-old men -- pope or not -- already share a signature scent. And it already has a name, too. They call it Bengay.

***  Didja hear the story about the brazen thief who stole all the toilet seats from the local police station? Yeah, it's a real shame. Authorities would love to nail the culprit, but so far, they don't have anything to go on. (Bazinga!) Well authorities in Trenton, New Jersey had a similar problem. Oh, they had plenty of seats. It was toilet paper that was lacking. Know that saying A job isn't done until the paperwork is complete? Well, a budget dispute left police departments and employees of various governmental offices unable to complete the job, so to speak. And we all know how full of it some politicos can be, so we're talking about a potential crisis here, folks. Fortunately, the mayor intervened and ordered an emergency supply of paper goods. Thank goodness someone stepped in to wipe up the problem. It could've gotten real messy.

This isn't exactly weird, but it is pretty darned amazing. This extremely well-done video compresses the story of pregnancy into a 90 second clip:
Alas, real pregnancies don't go that fast. But sometimes it sure seems as though our lives are on fast forward, doesn't it? So, slow it down as best as ya can. Let's smell those roses while they're still blooming, my friends.

                                     Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.