Friday, March 27, 2020

Happy Trails to You

Thought for the day: Please don't squeeze the... HEY! Where's the Charmin???

This is a common sight all over the world right now.
If poor ol' Mr. Whipple from the old Charmin television ads were still alive, wouldn't he be astounded? I mean, his very raison d'etre has disappeared. There's absolutely no reason to warn anyone not to squeeze the Charmin these days, because there's none left in the stores for anyone to squeeze... or buy.

Maybe we should blame the mysterious disappearing t.p. on those darned bears... (Or should I say bares?)

Believe me, I'm not making light of COVID-19. Like many of you, my hubby and I are both in the high risk category. But...( Or should I say butt?) as usual, I think the best way to cope with what's happening is with humor. (Surprise!)

So how about a silly little poem/song? (You can imagine me picking my guitar and singing, if you will...)


The pandemic news is scary,
And no telling what's to come.
We're locked down in isolation,
And some brains have gotten numb.
That's the simplest explanation
For this obsession oh-so-dumb.
The world's kinda crumbling around them
So– they crave paper to wipe their bum??? 

Buy it, buy it, and then buy some more.
Stack it in the closets; pile it on the floor.
Stash it in the basement; stuff it in the car.
Drink up all your bourbon, and then store it in your bar.
Throw out all your furniture; you can use it as your bed.
Build towers to the ceiling, and then fill a backyard shed.
Ignore your grumpy neighbors when they look at you and frown,
Because you're gonna have the cleanest butt in town.

Like a swarm of hungry locusts,
They ravage every store,
Grabbing every roll in sight
And then moving on for more.
This worldwide troop of buttheads,
Perhaps a million strong,
Care only about their precious rears
As they sing their hoarding song:

Buy it, buy it, and then buy some more.
Stack it in the closets; pile it on the floor.
Stash it in the basement; stuff it in the car.
Drink up all your bourbon, and then store it in your bar.
Throw out all your furniture; you can use it as your bed.
Build towers to the ceiling, and then fill a backyard shed.
Ignore your grumpy neighbors when they look at you and frown,
Because you're gonna have the cleanest butt in town.

Fat rolls, thin rolls, packs from four to forty-eight;
Soft stuff, rough stuff, and stuff that ain't too great.
It really doesn't matter... it's all about the hunt.
"Let no roll go unpurchased!" (A stinky selfish stunt.)
Until this pandemic's over and the panic buys grow still, 
They'll amass more toilet paper to leave their children in a will.
This behavior is atrocious; I think it's very wrong,
But that happy horde of hoarders still crow their hoarding song:

Buy it, buy it, and then buy some more.
Stack it in the closets; pile it on the floor.
Stash it in the basement; stuff it in the car.
Drink up all your bourbon, and then store it in your bar.
Throw out all your furniture; you can use it as your bed.
Build towers to the ceiling, and then fill a backyard shed.
Ignore your grumpy neighbors when they look at you and frown,
Because you're gonna have the cleanest butt in town...
♪♫ The cleeeeeanest buuutt in toooooown.... ♫♪

Okay, was that silly enough for you? No? Good, because I've got some cartoons for ya, too.

(Dime bags of t.p....)

our heroes... always eager to help
 Don't forget! It's more important than EVER to WASH YOUR HANDS!!! But...

              Until next time, hunker down and take care of yourselves. And keep smiling.

P.S.  On Wednesday, I took advantage of the early morning hour of shopping set aside just for us old farts at our local grocery store, and I thought I'd do you guys a solid by sharing a valuable public service announcement with you:

                                                                  You're welcome.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Going Home

Thought for the day: You can't go home again, because home has ceased to exist except in the mothballs of memory.  [John Steinbeck]

[image courtesy of morguefile]
Do you think that's true?

Is a yearning to go home nothing but useless nostalgia for a place that no longer exists?

And what IS home, anyway? Is it the place we came from... or is it the place we live now? Or perhaps we're like turtles, and no matter where we go, we take home with us?

[courtesy of morguefile}

I kinda agree with the concept that home is where the heart is... but what if our heart aches for a different place... where we once lived, or maybe someplace we'd like to live?

Well, then I reckon we have to suck it up, cupcake, and make the best of it.

But not always.

[image courtesy of Two Oceans Aquarium]

Meet Yoshi, a loggerhead turtle. Evidently, no one told HER you can't go home again.

In 1997, some Japanese fishermen found her... injured... off the coast of South Africa, and they took her to the fine folks at Two Oceans Aquarium, where she was treated, rehabilitated and trained to regain her strength. As she grew, she quickly became a crowd favorite at the aquarium.

                                   Here's a video of her at the aquarium in 2014:

                                             Um, yeah, she grew quite a bit over the years.

                                  In December of 2017, she was released back into the wild:

That gizmo on her back is a satellite tracking device. You know, so the folks at the aquarium... and around the world... could track her travels. And WOW! What a journey that ol' gal's been on.

[image courtesy of Two Oceans Aquarium]
The green marker indicates the place where she was released into the wild. From there, she headed up the west coast of Africa near Namibia and Angola. Then she turned around, went back to the area she'd been released and then headed across the Indian Ocean.

For the past 26 months, she's been swimming, swimming, swimming. Her destination? Evidently, to a loggerhead breeding and nesting area off the coast of Australia. This determined loggerhead turtle has doggedly swam more than 23,000 miles... without a break. Now that's determination. Could it be that the breeding ground is the place she was hatched... her home? Seems like an amazing possibility, doesn't it? After being in captivity for twenty years, something guided her to those breeding grounds.

[image courtesy of morguefile]
I like to think that she has, indeed, returned home.

At any rate, her journey is the longest, both in distance and longevity, that a tracking device has recorded.

She's quite the star. And hopefully, she'll be laying eggs of her own next breeding season.

Home is where one starts from. [T.S. Eliot]

No matter where you are, no matter where you may go, embrace that place, and I believe you will always feel... at home.

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

Friday, March 13, 2020


Thought for the day:  Gratitude is an attitude. [Dr. Laura]

Smarticus and I mostly stay happy, but I don't think it has anything to do with retirement... although being retired does merit a bunch of fist bumps and heartfelt yippees. (I honestly don't understand those people who hate retirement... we think it's GRRRRREAT!)

I think maybe being grateful has a lot to do with being happy, ya know? You know how some people wake up in the morning like they need a jump-start... with a industrial strength pot of coffee, or maybe a souped-up car battery? You could say their brains are just kinda warming up and operating with the wattage of a sweet little night light first thing in the morning. Me? When I wake up, it's more like every light in the house has been turned on at once... on high ... and a band is playing a jig in the background. Okay, not a jig. This is going to sound over-the-top corny, but that's okay. I'll admit to being a corny nerd. Anyhow, first thing every morning, a song goes through my mind... and the words set my mood for the day: This is the day, this is the day. This is the day that the Lord has made, that the Lord has made. Let us rejoice, let us rejoice, and be glad in it, and be glad in it. Yeah, I know. Not exactly fancy lyrics, but the tune is bouncy and the message is a reminder to be grateful.

When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive — to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to live — then make that day count. [Steve Maraboli]

And I have even more reasons than usual to be grateful now. One GREAT BIG AMAZING reason.

Smarticus' lung cancer is G-O-N-E, GONE!!! Just typing those words makes me cry all over again. But it's a good cry, a really really good cry.

His oncologists are rather amazed, actually. Amazed that he suffered next to no side effects from the chemo and radiation, and amazed that he conquered the vile beast called lung cancer.

I'm grateful... but not amazed. Positive thinking made me believe, all along, that this would be the outcome. So that's one huge hurdle cleared, and a couple more to go. Monday, he'll be starting the first of ten rounds of radiation for brain cancer. Just between you and me, I know he's gonna kick its butt, too. But just in case I don't post for a couple of weeks, I want you to know all is well, and...

                                                          WE'RE VERRRRY HAPPY!!!

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. [Melody Beattie]

Although I haven't had the pleasure of meeting most of you in person, I don't consider you strangers. I think of you as friends. My blogging pals. And I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your kind thoughts, wishes, words, and prayers. Your support has been dynamite.

A quick aside. If you smoke, or if you stopped smoking in recent years, (Congratulations!) I highly recommend an annual CAT scan to keep an eye on your lungs. By the time a person shows symptoms of lung cancer, or it can be seen on a standard chest X-ray, it may be too advanced. Smarticus' lung cancer was caught very early, and he was completely asymptomatic. The once-a-year lung cancer screening program he was in... saved his life. His docs praised our positive attitudes, but that SCAN... I can't say enough good things about that scan, and about the doctor who got him into that screening  program. Okay. End of my PSA.

Okay, so maybe our cats aren't exactly demonstrative about their gratitude... but that doesn't mean we should wait. Having appreciation and  not expressing it is like having a beautifully wrapped gift and not opening it.

That's the way it seems sometimes, isn't it? Everybody's got a beef about something or another. Why not think of something that makes you... happy? That makes you smile, feel good, and feel downright grateful.

I wanted to close this post with a music video. At first, I thought about This is the Day, but nah. I'm feeling so full of joy, I decided Ode to Joy would be a better choice. Most of you are quite familiar with Beethoven's original arrangement, but this one is a little different. More... ragtime. Upbeat. Bubbling over with joy... just like me. I hope you like it. I think it's rather amazing. Just like this day. And this life.

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

        Don't miss today's sunshine  worrying about rain that might be coming tomorrow. 

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

A Shout-Out for a Super Writer

Thought for the day:  Publishing a book is like being pregnant. By the end, you're just ready to get that baby out! [Carmen de Sousa]

Yes, indeedy. It's that time again.  Yet another month has slipped through our fingers, and it is once again time for our IWSG monthly posts. As always, thanks to our fearless leader, Alex Cavanaugh, for founding this fine group, and thanks to all the other nurturing guys and gals who've helped turn it into the thriving community it is today. I'm telling ya, this group offers better support and lift than the world's most expensive bra. (No pesky underwires, either!) To join this super supportive group of writers and to see links to other participating blogs, please go HERE

Before I go forward, one step backward. Last month's question was about whether or not we'd ever been inspired to write something by a photograph. I said no. Um... oops.  I was wrong.

THIS stunning photo inspired me to write a blog post. (Can ya blame me???) It was taken by photographer Todd Robinson at a KKK rally in a county just north of us in the 1990s.

[If you're interested, you can find that old February, 2013 post right HERE ]

There. Now I feel better. (I didn't mean to lie to ya!)

Now, moving on to this month's question...

Other than the obvious holiday traditions, have you ever included any personal or family tradition/customs in your stories?

Um, probably. It'd only be natural, dontcha think? But rather than pontificate on this subject, I've got something much better to write about... a new book!

Nope, not mine. Somebody much better. It's a brand new release from the lovely Elizabeth Seckman. If you aren't familiar with her, she's one of the sweetest ladies around, and what's more, SHE CAN WRITE!!! Reeeeeeally well!

A person who publishes a book willfully appears before the populace with his pants down. If it is a good book, nothing can hurt him. If it is a bad book, nothing can help him. [Edna St. Vincent Millay]

I'm sure Elisabeth would feel a teensy bit insecure at the prospect of appearing on my blog with her pants down, but honest... she has nothing to worry about! Her books are ALL good. Really!

Let's check out her latest, About Us, shall we?


Hayden Matthews isn’t looking for love—she’s trying to get as far from it as possible. She's already wasted eight years in a failed marriage and is ready for a good life. A peaceful life. One where she can raise her daughter to be strong, independent, and happy. But to make that happen, she must fix her own life first.

Cam Vorelli has loved Hayden since he was in grade school. Always in the friend-zone, he stood on the sidelines, his heart breaking, as she said I do to the wrong man. A man he knew didn't deserve her, who could never love her as he did. But what could he say? She was marrying into his family. Cam would never break a holy vow, much less be disloyal to his kin. 
Until he sees the bruises on Hayden. Abuse is a game-changer.

Leaving a husband like Tag, who has a hot temper, a badge, and a gun, is tricky. When Hayden calls Cam for help, she isn't trying to lure him into any romantic webs. She needs someone she can trust, and knowing her soon-to-be ex fears his former NFL cousin is a bonus. 

When Cam comes to her rescue, he isn’t doing it to win her love. He does it because it's the right thing to do. But if she starts to feel the same for him... couldn't it be fate?


Was she a monster for wanting to be happy? Screw happy. She didn't start the divorce process so she could be 'happy'.  She wasn't a child. She knew 'happy' was an elusive, often selfish goal. Being happy was Tag's thing. He wanted every day of his life to be some sort of party. She hadn't asked for anything so impressive. She didn't ask for a big house or a new car. Hell, she didn't even expect vacations. All she wanted was a simple life, a peaceful life. A life where she knew when her husband said he had to work late that he truly was working late, not diddling the bartender or dropping the grocery money into a slot machine.  She'd have been content with a marriage that simply wasn't miserable.

Kobo: FREE

Amazon: 99 cents

Elizabeth is a multi-published author of books for people
who are believers in happily-ever-after, true love, and stories with a bit of fun and twists with their plots. The mother of four young men, she tackles laundry daily and is the keeper of the kitchen. She lives along the shores of the Ohio River in West Virginia, but dreams daily of the beach. 

[And she's as cute as a button! sez ME]


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