Butterfly Kisses and Cactus Thorns

Today I drove 32 school kids and 8 adults to a field trip and while I was there, I was able to take these two pictures.

The butterfly is delicate.  The cactus flower is delicate but *VERY* well protected.





While We Were Hiking

lizardWhile my wife and I were hiking this morning, we noticed a young Chuckwalla warming itself on the rocks.   From nose to tip of tail, this one was probably 4 inches (10 cm) long and when (if) this one grows up, it will be 3 to 4 times longer.  Among “local lizards”, only the Gila Monster is bigger.

When they feel threatened they will run into a narrow crevice in the rocks and take a deep breath.  Their loose skin allows them to expand and that wedges them in the crevice.  Fully expanded and at the back of a deep crevice, they are difficult to dislodge and are immune to most threats.

The Refrigerator

I don’t know how it happens.

Every few days I check the contents of the refrigerator and remove the stuff that (obviously) should no longer be in there.  And, each month I thoroughly clean the inside of the refrigerator.

Yet, when I open the refrigerator, I am often confronted with spoiled food from things that look like they went extinct during the Jurassic era.

It was even worse this morning.  This morning, as I opened the refrigerator door, my nose recoiled and I am almost certain I heard a voice announce “Seal has been broken in autopsy.  Seal has been broken in autopsy.  This is an emergency.”¹  It was either that, or “Not even the Shadow knows what evil lurks in the depths of this refrigerator.”²

bsl4As I was cleaning, I noticed maggots beginning to gag and wretch, houseflies on the wing falling dead to the floor and buzzards flying away in mortal fear.

Had I known, ahead of time, what I would find in the refrigerator, I would have put on a “space suit”.³

The refrigerator is now clean, but I’m sure some rotten dinosaur meat is somehow being teleported into the refrigerator.

While the above account may be exaggerated…it is only slightly so.  However, the idea of dinosaur meat being teleported from the past no longer seems so far fetched.




¹The Andromeda Strain, by Michael Crichton.

²An adaption of the opening of Walter Gibson’s radio show, “The Shadow”.

³The image is from Wikimedia.

30,000 Pounds of Oranges

Well, not really 30,000 pounds, although it sure does feel like it.

So far, I have removed 642 pounds of oranges from my orange tree.  This is everything I can reach using a 4 foot, 6 foot and 8 foot step ladders AND a fruit picker on a 20 foot pole.  I’m going to guess there are still 200 pounds of unreachable oranges on the tree.

If you haven’t seen an fruit picker before, here is a picture of one from the Ace Hardware site.    fruitpicker


Unless I have no choice, I would rather pay a tiny bit more and buy from a local store (Ace Hardware in this case) instead of having to wait a few days for it (whatever “it” might be) to be shipped to me.

Also, it’s nice to be greeted (by name) by a human when I walk into a store instead of being greeted by OMM 0000 when I log into a website.

Back to the juicing operation.

I’ve asked ET (evil twin) if she would like some juice but I haven’t heard back from her yet.   She “hates” oranges, but she likes orange juice (strange “girl”).  Hopefully she has room in her freezer for a few 1/2 gallon jars of juice.


By the way, the title is a reference to the Harry Chapin song, 30,000 Pounds of Bananas.    The song is somewhat whimsical.  Not whimsical is the real life incident that inspired this song.  On 18 March, 1965, Gene Sesky was driving a truck carrying 30,000 pounds of bananas to a warehouse in Scranton, Pa.  While descending a short hill, the truck’s brakes failed.  Sixteen people were injured and Mr Sesky was killed.

The newspaper story.