Thursday, December 31, 2020

A Day Late And $23 Short

After my disappointing Mo Money Monday, I left home on Too Tardy Tuesday with anticipation. Just like I had on Monday. Sadly, with the same result. I'd been sure I'd find those new Missouri scratchers ensconced in the glass case of the Gas Station Chicken Store. But no. The case was full. But with tickets I am already familiar with. I bought a couple of $3 tickets, NO 44 OZ DIET COKE (not in a fit of pique, but because I had other errands), and went in search of the elusive SHOW ME tickets.

I'd pretty much given up hope. The Gas Station Chicken Store is always the first place to have their tickets out. Casey's and Country Mart might take until the end of the week. But Even Steven was looking out for me Tuesday, because when I stopped by the Sis-Town Casey's to use their bathroom, between the Sis gift drop-off, and my rendezvous with the bank for bond-redeeming purposes... I SAW THEM IN THE CASE!

It was even more important, because The Pony had given me money to buy him some new tickets. He'd looked them up on, and was itching to have a $10 and two $5 tickets. I bought them, with the intent of keeping one of the fives for myself. Surely you don't think I'd go a whole day without getting the latest tickets, and then ANOTHER day without one, just so The Pony could have TWO!

They're really pretty tickets. While sitting at the bank drive-thru for 30 minutes, I took pictures, to send to The Pony. An ti ci paaa aaaa tion!

That's the $10.
That's the $5, which did NOT want to be photographed, and SHUT DOWN my phone about five times, causing me to do a forced re-start by holding down the VOLUME DOWN and START buttons for ten seconds.
That's the $3, which is not part of the series. You uncover the symbols under the $$, then scrape off the ones you have on your prize grid. Any complete row or column wins the prize.

Let the record show that ALL OF THESE TICKET WERE LOSERS! But I'm glad I had the chance to play on the first day they were out. I got some more on Wednesday. The Pony won $10 on his pink $10 ticket, and $2 on the purple $2 ticket I am going to show below (although it's my loser that I scratched already). I won $5 on a blue $5, and $3 on a $3 Gold Mine. So at least they're paying back!

There's also a $1 ticket, half the size of this purple one, in bright green, with a top prize of $5000, loaded with $50 prizes. I won't be buying that green $1 ticket. They're too small to hold onto!
So... our first day, we struck out with the SHOW ME tickets. But the second effort garnered us mainly money back. There WAS a losing blue $5 for The Pony, and two losing $3s for The Pony, and a losing pink $10 for me. But we made more back than my customary 40 percent.
I'll keep buying them until I get bored with them, or they stop paying anything. I really like the $3s.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Niecy Has An Aunt Problem

Heh, heh! Don't you love those Geico commercials? The young renter couple who have a bit of a clogging problem? The new homeowners out in the yard, admitting they have an issue with the neighbors' fencing? And the poor couple who have moved into a new home, with an aunt infestation.

I'm afraid my niece, Niecy, might make a commercial about HER aunt problem! That would be about ME! I don't mean to be a problem. But I DID give her young daughter, Niecy Jr, a little Christmas box with only a picture of her future present in it.

Well. That present arrived on MONDAY, after 3:30, when I came home from town to see that the mail had finally been delivered. I sent a text to my sister the ex-mayor's wife, telling her that it was here, and that I was going to wrap it and get it to Niecy Jr on Tuesday, when I came to town.

Here's the thing. I haven't been in Niecy's house. We don't hang out. She hasn't been out here since she was a kid. We always meet at Sis's house for holidays. I told Sis that I was in a hurry, not planning to get out, and Sis said I could just bring it to HER house, and she'd get it to Niecy Jr. They babysat her until she started school a couple years ago. She's there a lot now when Niecy is busy doing teacher stuff.

I opened up the box to make sure the Unicorn Night Light was okay. It was. It's a hard plastic or resin, white, with pink accents, and GLITTER WINGS! The light is inside, with an ON/OFF switch on the bottom, no plugging into a socket necessary. I wanted to put in the 3 AAA batteries so it would work when she opened it. There was a tiny Phillips-head screw holding the battery door closed. So Farmer H took it downstairs and put in the batteries I'd fetched. When he brought it back upstairs, I wrapped it.

Of course I forgot to put the instruction sheet back in the box! So I had to fold it up and stick it down the side flap of the wrapping paper. I told Sis to take it out, and then put it in the box after Niecy Jr unwrapped her unicorn.

I don't know what Niecy and Niecy Jr had planned for Tuesday. I told Sis that I would drop off the unicorn after 2:00, on my way to the bank. Ironically, Niecy's house is right by the turn I make to get to Sis's house. I mean RIGHT BY the turn. If I turned left instead of right, I'd be on the road 50 feet from Niecy's back door. But she didn't need to know that! For all she knew, I came by AFTER the bank, so was in a different part of town.

Anyhoo... when I got to Sis's house, I parked by the garage doors, and texted her that I was there. She raised a garage door and came out. Their kitchen has a door that opens into the garage. The temperature was 35 degrees. Sis came out and opened T-Hoe's passenger door for the unicorn present, and said,

"I don't have on any shoes!"

"Well! Climb in for a minute! You don't need to be standing on cold concrete!"

"I can't step on your running board!"

Well, excuuuuuuuse me! I live a mile up a gravel road. T-Hoe's running board will gather dust and dried mud. I don't stop to wipe down the passenger side running board when I get to civilization! Sis is lucky that we didn't have slush and snow, in which case she might have busted her very own rumpus by climbing onto the icy running board.

Anyhoo... she climbed in, which was kind of entertaining, because it's a higher step than she has on her own Ford Excursion running board, which is automatic, and closes up until the door is opened, when it reveals itself for stepping. The main problem was that Sis has that bad thumb from slicing herself with the Ex-Mayor's Christmas knife while opening one of Niecy Jr's gifts. So she couldn't grasp the OH BLEEP HANDLE (as The Pony calls it) to hoist herself into T-Hoe.

Once she got in, and I'd managed to hide my smirk, I noticed that Sis was not barefoot, but had on ankle socks. Which are perfectly capable of being laundered. Sweet Gummi Mary! Sis had acted like my running board was molten lava as an excuse not to get inside.

Anyhoo... we chatted for about 5 minutes. I saw the thumb wound, which was healing nicely. The color was good, there was hardly a scab. She moved the thumb all around. But it's still useless to her without feeling.

"I really miss it when I try to put the back on my earring. I can't feel anything."

"If you went to a doctor, they might try to do microsurgery to attach the ends of the nerve together."

"I'm not crazy about being in a hospital right now."

"I know. If you have that feeling like when your tooth nerve is numbed, and you can feel your finger tap on your thumb, then the nerve might grow the ends back together like mine did in my jaw. But it won't happen overnight!"

"I think I'll just wait and see what happens. It looks okay. I just can't feel it."

Niecy hasn't got it so bad with her aunt problem. She could have a numb thumb!

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Too Tardy Tuesday, When New Scratchers Come Out To Play

Imagine my surprise when I peered into the glass-topped scratcher case at the Gas Station Chicken Store yesterday, and saw an EMPTY ROW! There are only five rows. Twenty percent of the merchandise was missing! It had been double-decimated!

The newest clerk was standing by, while Man Owner himself puttered around, a bill of lading, or a shipping list, or some such document in his hand. He was not his cheery self, like Ned Flanders, whom he also resembles. 

Clerk Boy waited on me as I cashed in a $20 winner from a $3 ticket. Man Owner stepped aside.

"Oh. Are you doing some spring cleaning in the lottery case?"

"No! I had it all ready. We were supposed to get new tickets today."

"I know! It's MO Money Monday! But the lottery website wasn't even updated! I checked after midnight Sunday, like I do for the last Monday of every month. But it wasn't showing the new tickets! That's happened once before. I was not happy. What are we getting?"

"A whole bunch. Like when they do that series for every denomination. We'll be getting a new 10, 5, 3, 2 and 1. All are the series, except the $3 ticket. I called the lottery office this morning, asking about our tickets. The lady said, 'Well, maybe you'll get them tomorrow.' It must be nice to have a state job! I just finally hung up on her. There is no reason not to have them today. They should have gotten them all ready to bring out last Thursday, before the holiday. They knew it was going to be MO Money Monday!"

Seriously. THEY picked that slogan themselves. Not Too Tardy Tuesday. It's MO Money Monday! 

At least, as the Clerk Boy pointed out, they were selling a lot of their older tickets, as customers saw that was all there was available. Surely you don't think people coming in to buy scratchers would NOT BUY, just because the new tickets aren't out...

Monday, December 28, 2020

Even Steven Delivers An Egging

I thought Christmas Dinner preparation was going to be a breeze. After all, I was making less dishes than Thanksgiving, and I had The Pony for help. Farmer H had decreed that we'd be eating the Ponytail Guy's meat, in the form of a FREE four-pound ham.

Some people got an actual four-pound ham in their food box that weekend at the Storage Units. But the box Farmer H got had a red voucher for a four-pound ham from Save A Lot. It was just a scrap of paper, but with a signature, and a crimped little design like it had been pressed with a seal. Of course Farmer H expected ME to be the one to bring home the ham. I went in for just that purpose. Nothing else. The voucher said I had to talk to the manager. I figured they'd find a manager for me when I showed the voucher.

I'd seen some hams in an open bin at the back of the store, by the meat department. I picked one out that was 4.12 pounds. It's not like they had trimmed them all to four pounds exactly. The one I found was a fresh ham. Mmm... I love a fresh ham, with a little rim of fat around the edge. I didn't have much hope that I'd be getting that ham for free, but I took it up front in the child seat of my cart/walker.
"I have this voucher for a free four-pound ham. I didn't know which kind it's for. Is it just ANY ham? Can I pay the difference in the weight?"
"Oh! I know exactly what you need! Give me the voucher."
Off she went, to a little room up front, between the registers and the door. Back she came within seconds, with my four-pound ham. She took the one I had put on the conveyor, and said, 
"Here you go! And we give this to the butcher."
She handed my delicious fresh ham in its net bag to a man walking by. Like a championship relay team handing off the baton. He headed for the back of the store. She handed me my four-pound smoked pressed ham. It looked like a football with rounded ends.
I'm not saying the FREE smoked pressed ham isn't good. It's good enough. We cut it in half, froze part, and baked it in a water bath, covered with foil, for 20 minutes. It was pre-cooked anyway. It warmed all the way through. Farmer H sliced it. We each ate a slab with Christmas dinner, and are now enjoying sandwiches. For a NOT-FRESH ham, it is adequate.
My only real preparations were the 7 Layer Salad, and the deviled eggs. Which I made on Christmas Eve day. The salad went well. I sliced and diced the green onions and boiled eggs, grated the block of Ponytail Guy FREE cheddar, and cut the Ponytail Guy FREE bacon with scissors at the kitchen table. Then I compiled the layers at the kitchen counter, using a bagged Caesar salad kit lettuce because once again, no romaine was to be found, and the thawed frozen peas, and the mayo. I had saved this salad-making for last, because I knew the deviled eggs would take two hours.

Sweet Gummi Mary! I thought I might shave a half-hour off that time. The first of the 2 dozen eggs peeled like a dream! The first 8 eggs slipped right out of their shells, like a tipsy floozy out of her clothes on a hot date with a well-heeled heel. I was anticipating a new record for egg-deviling. Was mentally engraving my award plaque when it happened!

The 9th egg refused to shed its shell! It held on tighter than snapping turtle waiting for thunder. I have no idea why the next set of eggs would not peel. They were all boiled in the same pan, at the same time. I can only surmise that I had a good dozen, and a bad dozen.

These were the worst. I set aside 8 of them for dicing into the 7 Layer Salad. The others were pretty enough for deviling.

There they are, resting on paper towels in the deviled egg tray, releasing excess moisture before I cut them in half.

They were cooked perfectly, except maybe the one in the foreground, which could have used another 30 seconds in the roiling pot.

I forgot to get a picture of the completed dish. I'm sure you can understand how my mind might have been foggy, after my two-hour egging.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

I Don't Know How Guys Walk Around With Those Things

Their stomachs. And their consciences.
Let the record show that my sister the ex-mayor's wife brought me some leftovers from her Christmas Eve finger-food party. She brought two kinds of cheese dip, chips, pizza snacks (mini sausage pizzas on rye bread), and some meat-cup thingies. More about them later. Oh, and some Li'l Smokies in BBQ sauce. Yes, technically they aren't finger-food, unless you're a real slob with no sense of decorum.

Anyhoo... we had our own leftovers packed in FRIG II. I gave Sis some deviled eggs, and some hash brown casserole. For supper, Farmer H and I rounded up what we wanted from both households. The Pony said he wasn't hungry for supper. 

I left the Li'l Smokies in their container. I like them, but I know that The Pony is not a fan of ham. He DOES like Li'l Smokies. So that could be his protein when he decided to make a leftover meal. Farmer H also likes Li'l Smokies. They are popular at Sis's house. The container, the size of a round 16-oz sour cream tub, was about half full. 

Saturday around 3:45, I came home to find The Pony just completing the warming of his meal-of-the-day. 

"Oh, Mom. I am having this stuffing, and I've discovered that it's good cold, so I'm not even warming it."

"Yuck. I barely like it warm. You go for it. I won't be having any leftover stuffing."

"I set out my deviled eggs so they could warm up. I like them better at room temperature."

"I see you've taken off the olive slices. I could have left them off for you when I made them. You should have said something. I thought you liked them."

"I DO like them. But not ON the eggs. It's a texture thing. I still eat them. Just separate. Oh, and I warmed up some rolls. And I'm having some Li'l Smokies."

"Dad had some last night. There can't be many left. You might as well have the rest of them."

The Pony put them in a glass bowl for microwaving. They barely covered the bottom. He took his feast to the coffee table, and strapped on the old feedbag. Farmer H came in and sat in his recliner. I said I was going to warm up some lunch. Offered to throw his in the oven with mine.

"IF you want something. I can heat it with mine. Unless you'd rather get it later. It's only 4:00, but I haven't had lunch yet. Do you want any pizza snacks, or those meat cups? I'm having some of the meat cups, so I'll be using the oven anyway. Do you want some ham?"

"No. But I'll have some pizza snacks. And some hash brown potatoes."

"Um. That wasn't my offer. I don't put potatoes in the oven. You can warm those in a bowl in the microwave. I didn't plan on making your supper now. Or did you not have lunch?"

"Oh. I had lunch. A sausage, up at the Storage Units. I might have potatoes later. But I'll have a slice of ham for a ham sandwich if you want to warm it. And some pizza snacks, three or four. And some Li'l Smokies."

"Um. Dad. I took the rest of the Li'l Smokies."

"When? Last night? Or just now?"

"I am literally eating the last of them just now."


"There weren't many left. And you had them last night!"

"Okay. Well. I'll have the sandwich and pizza snacks."

I put them on a foil-lined pan in the oven. Four pizza snacks. Four meat cups. And two slices of ham, because Farmer H had cut them unevenly, with a thick side, and a see-through side. Together, they'd make a normal slice.

There's a meat cup. I'm sure Sis has a better name for them. I think she uses wonton wrappers. It's the size of a muffin cup. Like you stuff the wonton in there and fill it. That mixture is sausage and cheese and maybe something like Worcestershire sauce. I don't know the recipe, but Sis makes a sausage version (which I prefer) and a beef version. The burnt tips are my fault. I left them in the oven a little too long to get them to crisp up again, but they were still tasty.

Anyhoo... I set the pan on top of the stove, and called Farmer H to come make his sandwich and gather his pizza snacks. He didn't want any of the 7 Layer Salad. More for me!

Anyhoo... when I turned back to look at the pan, Farmer H had taken one of my meat cups! When I could have put several on there for HIM. But no. He didn't want any. Until mine were ready! That's what happens when I offer to do him a favor.

That made me smug in the knowledge that I'd refused to warm up hash brown potatoes for him, and dip him some salad. The point of leftovers is that people can fend for themselves! Farmer H treating this like a snack between lunch and supper did not help his case. And I'm GLAD I told The Pony to eat the rest of the Li'l Smokies!

Farmer H needs to learn that he is not actually king of this castle, with first dibs on everything, and servants at his beck and call.

Saturday, December 26, 2020

There Are None So Blind As He Who Goes To Pee

No, this isn't another tale of horror from the toilet seat. It's a story of responsibility. Or lack thereof.

Wednesday morning, I awoke in my OPC (Old People Chair). The clock read 7:10. Well! That's certainly later than my usual time to go to bed. Last I recall, that clock had said 5:30. I thought I was getting up to ascend the stairs, but I guess I fell asleep. 

Farmer H had already left for town. I made a disturbing discovery in the master bathroom. A dead cricket was stretched across the middle of the three rugs, between the sink and the toilet. Beside the big triangle tub. It was obvious to me that Farmer H had stepped on a cricket. AND LEFT IT THERE!

No. You can't take Farmer H's side. You can't convince me that the cricket died of old age, or screwed the lid off one of Farmer H's medicine vials and overdosed. There were no blood and guts, but the cricket looked a little flat. His legs were sprawled out like a frog. 

You may recall that I have no fondness for crickets. I abhor them. No way was I picking up that beast before changing into jammies and crawling into bed to sleep until 11:00. This cricket was Farmer H's doing (doing-in), and he could take care of it. Besides, I think I've voiced my opinion that such a duty is a man's job.

Well. By now you understand how Farmer H's mind works. He thinks that if he pretends he doesn't SEE his own messes, they don't exist FOR HIM. But that I should notice, and take care of them. Like wiping off the toilets seat, carrying paper plates from beside his recliner to the kitchen, and tossing out expired milk that he has held, read the date on, noticed the chunkiness, commented to me about, and put back in FRIG II.

I heard Farmer H come back into the Mansion sometime during my interrupted slumber, and heard him in the bathroom peeing. Because he never closes the door, except in the morning darkness for his shower. When I got up later, that cricket was still there. In fact, it was there all afternoon and evening and night and the next morning. When I decided I'd had enough of stepping over it, and scooped it up with precious toilet paper, and flushed it.

Don't think I let Farmer H skate. Heh, heh. I'm sure you know I didn't.

"You're welcome for me throwing away your dead cricket."

"What? Dead cricket? I don't know what you're talking about."

"You've stepped over it for two days. I guess you thought it was MY JOB to pick it up."

"I didn't see no cricket."

"I'm sure you did. In the bathroom, right there in the middle of the floor, on the rug."

"I don't look down where I'm walking, HM!" [How prophetic, with his driveway fall to come the very next day!]

"If you didn't see it, then I'm sure you would have stepped on it, because it's right where you walk, in the middle of the floor, and gotten it stuck to your foot. It hasn't moved in two days!"

"Huh. I never saw it."

The Pony came out of his room. "Cricket?"

"I'm sure YOU saw it, too, when you took your bath for three hours!"

"I didn't see any cricket."

Sure. I must have the vision (AND SELF-CONTROL) of a military sniper.

Friday, December 25, 2020

It Hasn't Begun To Look Much Like Christmas

Welp! Here it is, 12:20 a.m. on Christmas morning, and I still have four gifts to wrap. Guess I'd better get on the stick, don't you think? Those presents aren't going to wrap themselves. I suppose I can fill a stocking for The Pony as well. This just doesn't seem like Christmas this year, after foregoing the Christmas Eve party at the home of my sister the ex-mayor's wife. No games for me to win (much to the chagrin of all other competitors), no finger foods, no wine-tasting contest, no gift-unwrapping.

It's just me and Farmer H and The Pony. Not many gifts. Not many dishes for Christmas dinner. Still, I am very happy to have The Pony here with us, even though I miss Genius terribly. Genius adds a little spice. You never know who his sharp humor may be carving next. He gets me laughing until I can't stop, even when I'm the victim being skewered. The Pony gives me a chuckle, and labored breathing, but nothing quite as hysterical as with Genius.

Okay. Time to tackle those gifts and stocking. Merry Christmas to all!

Thursday, December 24, 2020

I Give Up

Remember yesterday, when I was having a problem with Farmer H trying to give a stained hat as a gift? Sure you do! Who could forget an act so heinous? I even told him it was for his own son! The bright orange hat with fur ear flaps, suitable for a hunter.

I asked Farmer H if he'd brought another hat home from his Storage Unit Store. 

"No. That one is fine."

"It has a stain on it!"

"Not no more. I cleaned it."

"With WHAT?"

I don't remember the name. Something that sounded harsh. According to Farmer H, it took the stain right off. I picked up the hat, laying exactly where I'd left it, and I must admit, the black stain was not apparent. There might have been a smudge. Or maybe an appearance that a solvent had been applied. But if I hadn't been looking for it, I might not have noticed.

"I guess I'll go ahead and wrap it for him..."

"The Veteran don't care if his hat has a stain on it! If he says anything, I'll tell him that I had them up at my store, and somebody must have stepped on it."

That's a bit presumptuous, if you ask me. Which I'm sure you are. "Mrs. HM! Did you REALLY wrap a stained gift to give The Veteran?" Yes. And I'm not proud. But at least I know I made The Veteran an Oreo cake, with nothing wrong with it, that he purely LOVES. Plus, I gave him the best knife set out of the ones that WE bought from Farmer H's Storage Unit Store. And he's also getting Chex Mix, a cash gift, and four scratchers. 

Maybe Even Steven will see fit to compensate The Veteran for his stained hat.

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

A Blip Of The Hat

Farmer H is providing some of the Christmas gifts for the men relatives. He had some knives in boxes, like a gift set, that included a pocket knife, and a little hunting-style knife, foldable, with a blade about 3 inches long. The handles were that brown-and-white composite called "imitation stag."
The other gift is a hat with fake fur earflaps. There are two styles, Hunter Orange and Camouflage. There were two of the orange, so I decided to give them to Farmer H's second son, The Veteran, and to my nephew, Neph. They both hunt a lot. The camouflage I'd give to HOS (Farmer H's Oldest Son), and my niece's husband, and the ex-mayor my sister's husband. I could imagine Ex-Mayor wearing it in the yard, but not out in town.

Anyhoo... don't go thinking that Farmer H just PROVIDED these gifts out of generosity. HE BILLED ME FOR THEM! Not that I mind a man making a buck. But I sometimes think he stretches a concept in order to help his business.

Anyhoo... I set out those hats to wrap them, and the very first one, which I'd picked up for The Veteran, had a black stain across the brow! Not greasy-feeling, but like somebody might have walked through fresh blacktop, and stepped on the hat. I did not wrap it. I told Farmer H when he got home, and he did not seem at all concerned.


"Well, we can't give that to anybody! You said you had more at your store."

"I do."

"Um. Do you think you could bring a different one?"

"Yeah. If you don't like that one. Did you want all the same kind?"

"I want one that ISN'T STAINED!"

Sweet Gummi Mary! Sometimes it's really hard to get through to Farmer H.

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Contemplating Mrs. HM's Navel (Orange)

Are you ready for this? Make sure you've finished your meal. That you're not having any symptoms of nausea. When you feast your eyes on THIS, your stomach might want to refund.

You may recall that a Ponytail Guy has been bringing free food boxes to the Storage Units on Friday mornings. The last several weeks, the boxes have included produce, which we did not get earlier in the year. We have accumulated several weeks' worth of ORANGES. I like oranges. I'm not letting them go to waste. I have one every night after supper. Sometimes, I have one with lunch, also. 
I peel them and eat them in sections. My mom's preferred way was to slice an orange in half, and suck on the sections for the pulp and juice. That's okay sometimes. But I like mine whole these days. They are navel oranges. Seedless.

Imagine my surprise when I looked at the orange The Pony had picked out to put on my supper tray. He warned me that it looked funny. Did I want him to throw it away? No siree, Bob! Take a gander for yourself:

That's quite a navel! Definitely an "innie." I know that some oranges have a navel that results in a mini orange at the bottom of the real orange. You know, when you peel it, there's another little ball of sections at the bottom of the sections. Sometimes you can eat them. Sometimes they're too pulpy.

Don't be frightened! I'm going to show you a closeup inside the navel! Still intact, but a closer view. My phone changed the tint, but you will see that it's the same orange.

Doesn't that look ominous? It's the coloring. Like something from a horror movie! A creature might burst forth! Or a warning poster about disease from the CDC!

Let the record show that I peeled the orange as normal, and ATE IT! I wish I had taken a picture of it without its skin, but the thought didn't occur to me at the time. It was like a regular orange, with a little bit larger "inside orange" at the bottom of the sections. 
Here's the odd part. This orange had really thick white stuff that holds the peel to the sections. It was very hard to peel. After all that thickness came off, the orange was pretty small. The sections were hard to pull apart, and the fibrous covering of them peeled away with the next section, allowing juice to run out all willy-nilly. Still, the taste was good.

I am not averse to continuing to eat the Ponytail Guy's navel (oranges).

Monday, December 21, 2020

Your Dog House Awaits

Farmer H is skatin' on thin ice! Actually, he's skatin' only on the surface tension of water, like some freaky flying insect on a pond. A dunking is in order.
Sunday, I started my day making a batch of my world-famous Chex Mix. It was the second batch in two days. The Pony assisted me by pulling it out of the oven for me to stir. I was virtually lame from doing that bending and twisting the previous day.
Anyhoo... I also wrapped some gifts. I didn't get home from town until 4:00. I'd had neither breakfast nor lunch, only a couple Chex that got stirred out of the pans, which The Pony didn't grab first. I met Farmer H in SilverRedO, coming out the gravel road. Of course we stopped alongside each other to chat. That's what we do. We own the road. Literally.
"I'm going to pick up a gun. It's a 45-minute drive there. And then back."
"I'm just getting home. I'm ready for lunch. I'm making you a terrible tater for supper. With the Ponytail Guy's potato, and some of his meatballs."
"Okay. That sounds good."
"I'm just now about to have lunch. So I may not come up until 6:30 or 7:00 to start your supper."
Well! The look I got was almost as crazy as that of a possible UPS bad-deliverer!
"Okay then. 6:30. That's when I'll come up. I guess you'll be home by then..."
"I will be home by 6:00!"
"Okay. I'll be up at 6:30."
Off he went. By the time I had contained the just-cooled Chex Mix, and mixed up some sauce for my sandwich, and slipped into my lair-wear, and descended to my lair... it was 5:00. I had 90 minutes to eat "lunch," scratch my scratchers, and catch up on my innernets. That hardly seemed fair.

It got even worse when Farmer H stumped down the stairs at 6:20, and started fiddling about in one of the safes on the other side of my lair wall.

"Are you over there?"

"Yes. I'm putting something in the safe."

"There's a problem with your supper. The Pony checked the date on the sour cream, and it was expired. So the sour cream from the Ponytail Guy, that is good until February, is over in the BARn."

"Mumble mumble mumble."

"I can't hear you."


"I was only trying to tell you about supper, to see what else you might want."

"I SAID I'd eat it without sour cream! But don't bother! I'll make myself something!"

"Be that way! I was only trying to make supper for you!"

Seriously. I guess he'd starve to death if he didn't have a personal cook. But LET him find his own food. He IS an adult. I manage to find MY own food every day. Even THE PONY can feed himself!

I went on about my business, sorting through the scratcher gifts that I give to 14 family members. Some get more than others. There's a fine balance between apportioning them by assorted dates and spouses and types of tickets. Then I had to update my list for Farmer H and The Pony, to make sure they got equal kinds. Plus fill out a shipping label for Genius, before filling his care package box upstairs with treats and tickets and beef jerky and Chex Mix.

Around 8:15, I hauled myself upstairs, planning to wrap some more gifts, and get Genius's box ready for shipping on Monday. My late-night supper would be the six chicken nuggets from the Ponytail Guy, which I had been saving for several days, for a time when I wasn't making a meal for all three of us. The Pony had feasted on the remains of his Friday pizza. 

Imagine my chagrin when I saw a Chinese Tupperware container beside the sink. Full of crumbs from crispy chicken nuggets from the Ponytail Guy. 


I'm pretty sure he did that on purpose. Don't you worry about Mrs. HM. I had a Banquet TV Dinner. The kind that used to be 99 cents, but is now over a dollar! BBQ Rib, corn, and mashed potatoes. It was really more of a McRib piece of pressed meat. But it was tasty enough to stave of starvation until 5:00 the following day...

Sunday, December 20, 2020

Chillin' With A Valedictorian And A Chemical Engineer

We're having a brief lull here at the Mansion. The Official Headquarters of the Greater Hillmomba Brain Trust. A mind is a terrible thing to waste, you know. Use it or lose it. We might be in danger.

Thursday, The Pony did the weekly grocery shopping while I did the weekly errands. We didn't have time to convene until I got back from town. The Pony carried my lunch tray downstairs while I changed into my lair wear. I leaned over the back of the couch to talk to The Pony for a minute before descending to my mole hole.

"What are you doing now?"

"I'm getting my laptop out of my room, so I can sit out here while MY TV is recording your Cagney and Lacey."

"I can't believe you're not a fan!"

"Um. No."

"It was a really good show back then. But it's kind of dated now. They have to call the precinct from a PHONE BOOTH!"


"What's that smell? Is that your new tropical shampoo?"

"Yeah. Here. Smell it." The Pony leaned over the end table by the couch, and stuck his head in my face.

"Gee, your hair smells terrific."

"It's pretty good."

"You missed that. It's a dated reference to an old shampoo brand."


"Well. I guess I'll go downstairs and leave this stimulating conversation. WHAT are you doing?"

"Looking for my phone. I don't know where I set it."

"Retrace your steps."

"I don't THINK I put it in the refrigerator when I was putting stuff away. Hm. I don't know WHERE it could be."

"Here. I'll call it."

"That's not necessary."

"Yes it is. You don't seem to be finding it."

"Here! Let ME do it. Huh. It says network unavailable."

"It's that darn metal roof! I can barely use my cell phone now in the house."

"I turned off your wi-fi so the phone will work."

"Be sure to turn it back on!"

"Listen. THERE! It's ringing!"


"YOU were standing right over it the whole time!"

"It's YOUR phone! Besides, YOU leaned across it to smell me your hair! Your belly-button was almost on it!"

"I don't have eyes in my belly-button!"

"Oh my gosh! We are SO STUPID!"

I have a feeling our brains currently look like a couple of dried-out English walnuts.

Saturday, December 19, 2020

People Of The Gas Station Chicken Store

I hate to do this to you. I really do. But I'M GOING TO DO IT ANYWAY!

You may recall that I haven't been going to the Devil's Playground this year. Not since March, and maybe once since then. The Pony does my shopping. So I haven't been keeping up with The People of the Devil's Playground. Farmer H made sure I didn't miss out, though.

"Look at this picture I seen today. It's from a Devil's Playground. I saved it."


"Yeah. She ain't got no underwear on. Her dress don't even cover her a$$. Now why do they let people walk around like that?"

"Of COURSE you saved THAT!"

"Well. I did."

You know how The Universe has a wicked sense of humor? I came out of the Gas Station Chicken Store on Friday. The Pony was with me, eating Little Caesar's pizza before we got it home. I rounded the corner of the building with my 44 oz Diet Coke and scratchers. As I was putting stuff in before climbing up on the running board, The Pony said,

"Don't look now. Don't look at all. You DON'T want to see that!"

I had sensed the presence of a white car in front of T-Hoe, at the air hose. Nothing unusual. That's a popular place. Most people in Hillmomba seem to have leaky tires. The Pony ducked his head and slapped a palm to his forehead. 

"Oh, no..."

Of course I looked.

"EEEEEE! NO! I can't believe that! Get me a picture!"

"I'M not getting you a picture!"

"Get it! You can use my phone!"


"Oh my gosh! He's getting away!"

"Here! Here's your phone. Get the picture!"

"You said not to!"

"YOU wanted one!"

"Oh my gosh! He's LOOKING at me! Isn't he? Can he see that I took a picture?"

"I don't know. Give me the phone!"

The guy drove off. The Pony checked to see if I got the photo. 

I did.
Back at the Mansion later that evening, Farmer H was pontificating in his recliner. 

"Oh! I took a picture to show you today, at the Gas Station Chicken Store! Here. Look."


"That's all you've got to say? YOU showed ME a picture of a butt hanging out. Now I'M showing YOU one."

The Universe does truly have a sense of humor. It just happened to be Farmer H's birthday.

Friday, December 18, 2020

Furry Scurrier, We Reluctantly Knew Ye

I ate my lunch Wednesday with the knowledge that on the other side of the white-washed composite-board wall, a critter was stuck to a sticky trap. As I finished, I heard steps on the stairs. It was the footless-ankle tromping of Farmer H, not the light trot of The Pony.

I heard the heavy metal door of the workshop open to the back yard. Then it closed. And footless ankles tromped upstairs. Was that IT? How could Farmer H not come in to apprise me of the situation? Sure, I complain every time he invades my lair. But this was extenuating circumstances.

Surely he had not just tossed that critter on the sticky carpet out into the yard! I'm pretty sure Juno, Jack, and Copper Jack would regard the Furry Scurrier as a tasty morsel to be scarfed in one bite. The sticky trap could not be good for their innards. I heard the footless-ankle-tromping over my head in the master bathroom. I sent Farmer H a text.

"What did you do with it? I don't want a dog to eat it and die from the sticky trap."

"Ok ill put it where they cant get it"

YOU'RE WELCOME, Juno, Jack, and Copper Jack! I saved you from your own gluttony.

Farmer H tromped back down those 13 steps and again, I heard the heavy metal door open. Close. I summoned Farmer H to my lair.

"There. I put it where they cain't get it no more."


"On the pool deck. They cain't get up there. And the gate to the steps is locked. [I think CLOSED would be sufficient.] The cat can get in there. He might eat it. But you don't like him much anyway."

"His mouth is smaller. He might get stuck, but I don't think he could eat the sticky trap. If he was doing his job, he would have eaten that critter before it was trapped. What did you do the first time, just throw it in the yard?"

"No. I couldn't get him off the trap. I wanted to use it again. So I put it down right outside the basement door. I thought there might be others that try to get in."

[Heh, heh! And the decomposing carcass of a dead comrade wouldn't be a deterrent, I suppose!]
Was it a mouse or a mole?"

"It was a mole. He had a snout on him. I mean, a nose. Like moles have. Pointy."

"Good thing you picked it up. Jack digs the baby moles out of the front yard and eats them. A lot."
A mole in the Mansion. Only in Hillmomba...

Thursday, December 17, 2020

The Stirring Creature

Farmer H agreed to pick up mousetraps to capture the invader I encountered in the NASCAR bathroom (next to my dark basement lair) on Monday night. Then he delegated the trapping duty to The Pony. I heard him trotting down the steps around 4:30.
"Mom. Where do you want the last two traps? Dad said to put one by the basement door, and one by the door to his SAFE room. He says they try to get in there."
"How does he know that? Do they knock? What could be in there that they'd want? An old pressed-wood roll-top desk, and some knives and classic toys from Grandma's basement?"
"I don't know. But that's what he told me. Do you want this one over here? By the door to your office? Where you won't step on it? And maybe one under your desk?"
"Wait a minute! What IS that? It's so GREEN!"
"Dad got sticky traps. They're REALLY sticky! I got my hand stuck on them carrying them around."
"No. It won't run along there. Put it at the corner, under that cabinet. And the other one you can put in the bathroom, at the corner of the sink cabinet and the wall, where I first saw it. I don't want one under my desk! I can't sit here, thinking there might be a trapped mouse watching me. Or I might put my foot on it."
The Pony did that chore, and headed back upstairs. When I went up to make supper, I questioned Farmer H on his choice of traps.
"I thought you'd get one of those cardboard kinds that they run into. Then you throw the whole box away. WHY would you get sticky traps? After I told you that story about the Man Owner of the Gas Station Chicken Store, and the mouse feet!"
"I thought they'd be the easiest. I bet we catch us a mouse tonight!"
"I don't think it will happen THAT quick! Am I going to hear mice screaming? Will they make a noise if they're stuck and struggling?"

"They ain't gonna be happy, that's for sure! They might squeal."

I was kind of nervous through the night and early morning. I glanced at the two traps in my area every time I went by them. It was a bit disconcerting to think that I might be on the toilet with a stuck mouse watching. But the traps remained empty.

Wednesday afternoon, The Pony carried my lunch down to my lair. 

"I'm going to check the traps. Dad said to."

I was changing into my lair clothes when I heard The Pony chattering in the living room. Farmer H wasn't home, so I figured he had news for me. He did.

"I went to check the trap in the workshop, by the basement door. There's something IN IT! But I'm not sure what it is."

"SEE! I told you it didn't quite look like a mouse! Is it a mole?"

"I don't know. It's brown. And furry. But it has three lumps."

"Three LUMPS? It must be contorted from trying to get loose."

"Are you sure it was a mammal? Not a big furry spider?"

"YES! I know it was a mammal. But I didn't see the tail, and it's the wrong color compared to other mice."

"Come down and look!"

"Why would I do THAT? I don't want to think about it, right before my lunch. Is it moving?"

"Not that I could tell. I'll get you a picture of it. But I'm NOT throwing it away. THAT is Dad's job!"

Are you ready? Here it comes! Let the record show that this is the unbreakinable (except to vermin) heavy metal exit door from the basement workshop area to the under-porch area that leads to the back yard and POOLIO. Farmer H has stuck up some pink foam insulation on the concrete walls. Sloppily. Outside, there's a concrete retaining wall, and every leaf in Hillmomba swirls in a pile, waiting to get in like disco freaks in line on a 1977 Saturday night at Studio 54. Farmer H is not keen on sweeping them out once they gain entrance. I don't go by that door. It's his job to maintain his workshop exit.

Anyhoo... here's the critter. It looks bigger in the picture than in person. The bright green sticky part of the trap is about 4 inches by 2 inches.

In case you want a close-up to decode this mystery:

The Furry Scurrier is less than 2 inches long. The tale of his disposal tomorrow...

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

'Twas The Night 10 Days Before The Night Before Christmas

Monday night, December 14. A creature was stirring. Even Steven's a louse.
Somewhere in my senility or dotage, I must have done something not-good. WHY would Even Steven bestow upon me a new horror in my dark basement lair? 

Actually, I was in the NASCAR bathroom right next to my dark basement lair. I had just done my business. I stood in my Doc Ortho black socks (I take my shoes off in the bathroom. Kind of like George Costanza taking off his shirt. Not to feel free, but to lessen the two inches the soles add in bending my knees more sharply when I sit and stand), turning to hit the flush handle.


Something ran along the floorboard trim! Scurried! Something tiny! Brown! Furry!

Sweet Gummi Mary! It was hiding behind the wastebasket. 

"NO! GIT!"

I moved the wastebasket, and that furry scurrier darted to the corner. 


Furry Scurrier darted behind the toilet. Came out the other side, by the plunger and brush. Turned and went back to the corner. Back behind the wastebasket. Back to the corner under the built-in wooden counter with the airbrushed NASCARs on top. Sat there.

Well. What was I supposed to do? It was 2:00 a.m. Those sugarplum dreamers were not going to dash to my rescue. I left him there. Surely you didn't think I'd put on my New Balance and stomp him. Surely you didn't think I could catch him. That's what men are for.

It was tiny. Less than two inches, I'd say. I didn't even notice a tail. WHAT IF IT'S NOT A MOUSE? Maybe it's a baby mole! Come to think of it, I didn't see the big ears of the field mice that have been the previous invaders at the cold snap. And it wasn't the mousy gray color. It was dark brown.

I told Farmer H at 7:00 a.m. that we had a mouse. And that I couldn't set the snap-traps, because I'd set them off by the time I got bent over to put them on the floor. He said I could get traps when I went to town.

What in the NOT-HEAVEN? That's a MAN'S JOB! The nerve of him, thinking I would buy my own mousetraps!

"They have them at the grocery store."
"I've never seen mousetraps in the grocery store."
"Well. The Dollar Store would have them."
"What are YOU doing? Why don't YOU get them. I'M not going to buy mousetraps."
Farmer H agreed to pick some up while HE was in town.
More tomorrow, as the situation develops.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Nuclear Family Winter Is Coming

Monday finally showed us what winter will bring. High temps in the 30s. Farmer H underfoot.

It's a pity that Farmer H's crew is not a more hardy lot. Granted, most of them are older than he. With bones more grindy, that feel the chill more deeply. So he's not hanging out at his Storage Unit Store every day until suppertime.

The Pony and I are on a similar schedule. We stay up late, and sleep in. Neither of us has anywhere we need to go. A 44 oz Diet Coke will wait for me all afternoon. I generally go to bed at 6:00, get up at 11:00, and head to town at 1:00. The Pony keeps odder hours. He's usually asleep by the wee hours of the morning. Sometimes he's up and showered by 9:00. Sometimes he's up, but waits for the shower until I leave for town.

Farmer H is out of the house by 8:00. Sometimes by 7:00. I know he thinks it's a secret that he drives to Casey's every morning for donuts. It's not. If times were different, he'd be one of those old guys sitting around Hardee's for three or four hours with a cup of coffee. But without the coffee. These days, he comes back home to putter around in his BARn or Freight Container Garage. Where he's trying to clear out the remainders of his Original 18 Storage Units that have been there for two years.

Nothing is as disconcerting as sitting at the front window with your HIPPIE at 11:45, and seeing, over the screen, Farmer H driving up in the Gator.
"I come over to get The Pony to help me move two cabinets. Is he up?"
"Yes... and while you're in here, I need you to sign the back of that insurance refund check. I'm going to the bank to deposit it."
"PONY! I need you to come help me move some cabinets!"
"Oh. You're not dressed yet?"
"No. I haven't had a shower. I'll do that, and I'll be ready. Let me shut down what I've got going."
"WAIT! I was just getting ready to take MY shower! I'll freeze to death!"
"It don't have to be right now. I have to clear some room where I want to move them. You'll get dirty, too. They ain't very clean. Can't you just put some old clothes on, and take your shower later?"

"I'll do it now."

"Let your mom take her shower. I might drive to town for some lunch. Then you can do it."

Farmer H got up in a huff, shaking his head, unhappy that his serfs were not asking how high he wanted them to jump. 

"Now now now! Gotta do it now! You always disrupt our routine."

"I wait until noon before I even come back in the house! I should have asked my buddy to come out and help. I'll get it moved."

Farmer H went to the dogs. At least THEY love having him around. They started barking their fool heads off, to run along with the Gator. The Pony came back out of his room, like an eel out of a rock at the bottom of the ocean.

"If he had told me what he wants moved, I could go and do it."

"I think it will take both of you. He's going to lunch. You can text him when you get out of the shower. I'm taking mine now. About 15 minutes, I'll be out and you can start. You'll have enough hot water, since I don't take a 45-minute shower."

I went to the kitchen to fill out my deposit slip. And sent Farmer H a text. 

"Signature? I guess I can forge it."

Immediately, I heard the baying of the fleabags. Farmer H appeared at the kitchen door to sign the back of the refund check.

While I like having Farmer H where I can keep tabs on him, I DON'T look forward to him being underfoot until spring.

Monday, December 14, 2020

Hunan Ponytail Guy Chicken Nuggets

As if we weren't raking in enough free food from the Ponytail Guy up at Farmer H's storage lockers... Back Creek Neighbor Bev sent Farmer H a text that she had some stuff for him.

"I don't know why Bev thinks she needs to give me canned goods!"

"You said they just got a contract on their house! They're going to be moving, and she's cleaning stuff out. That makes sense."

"Well, maybe. She gave me a bunch of cans. There's watercress--"

"WATERCRESS! Do you even know what that is?"

"Yeah. That stuff they put in Chinese food. The crunchy round things."

"No. That's water CHESTNUTS!"

"Oh. Well. That's what they are. And some soy sauce that might be organic--"

"Any baby corns? I could put that in my leftover Chinese from Friday night! Where is it?"

"Over in the BARn."

"Well, I can't use it over there."

"PONY! Go get your mom that Chinese stuff from the BARn. It's on my workbench. You'll see it. There's about 6 bottles of the soy sauce--"

"I only want ONE bottle of the soy sauce. And the water chestnuts, and the baby corns."

Off went The Pony. He was gone so long that I started to worry.

"He's been gone over 15 minutes! When I sent him for the chicken nuggets, he was back in five. You don't think he fell and cracked his head open, do you? What could be taking so long?"

Farmer H went to the front door and looked. Didn't see him. Went across the yard to investigate. After another five-ten minutes, they both returned. The Pony first. 

"NOTHING was where Dad said it was! They were in BAGS, on the floor, across the room from his workbench!"

Anyhoo... here's a picture of my newest free food:

"Check the dates on them, Pony! I've never seen those labels before. I wonder where she got them. Not from Save A Lot or Country Mart. Maybe she ordered online."

"Mom. I'm pretty sure the baby corns are an actual Chinese brand. But the dates are good until 2021 on all of them. You might have to slice the water chestnuts."

"That's okay. I've done that before."

So... I added these ingredients to my leftover Hunan Pork, from which I'd eaten all the pork, and had added cut-up chicken nuggets from the Ponytail Guy's stash. I stretched my Chinese takeout into three extra meals. It could have been more, but I don't eat like a hummingbird!

I even put my meal in my Chinese Tupperware! The container that we used to get our carryout in! I had cut up an onion and a green pepper, also from the Ponytail Guy, and microwaved them with soy sauce. I used Farmer H's leftover fried rice, mixed with my leftover white rice. Kind of a Frankenstein parts Chinese dinner. Hunan Ponytail Guy Chicken Nuggets.
It was real, and it was spectacular.

Sunday, December 13, 2020

TIMBER! I'm Falling In Tub

Gotta give props to Patty Loveless. She did it first, this little song. Not about a tub, though. That's where we differ. Her song was about love. Not a big green triangle tub in her master bathroom. There's no actual video on that song. It was her first #1 hit. I found that out when I looked it up. And also that Patty is cousins to Loretta Lynn and Crystal Gayle! Her dad was brother to Loretta's mom. Small world, old country music.
Anyhoo... we're not here today for a discography of country music. We're here to talk about another misfortune of Mrs. Hillbilly Mom. Because it's ALL ABOUT HM, you know! 
Saturday morning, and by morning, I mean 1:00 pm, I was walking from the shower, freshly clean, across the master bathroom rug to the sink. It's a distance of about 10 feet. It's a big bathroom. As always, I walked slowly. My knees stiffen up while standing in the shower. I take my time to get moving again.


My left knee collapsed! That's currently the good knee. It turned to spaghetti! My knee was like a tree that had been chopped with a hatchet until it was unstable enough to topple in that direction. I flailed! I windmilled! I must have looked like a much thicker version of one of those air tubey guys used to attract attention at used-car lots, swaying and bending and swaying some more, like I was having a seizure of sorts!

Lucky for me, the big green triangle tub was on my left, about mid-thigh high. I grasped at the edge to stop my fall. My hand hit a plastic box of baby wipes and a giant plastic powder container. The wipes shot into the empty tub, the powder flew across the tile. I said I was flailing! My right hand darted out like a frog's tongue, and grasped the corner of the sink vanity. Whew! Catastrophe averted.

My adrenaline was pumping for a good 15 minutes after that little episode. My knee didn't hurt at all. It was just a temporary malfunction. Like a trick knee, I guess. Now I know what old people were talking about. 
What a relief that I didn't go down to the cold, cold tile. Or even worse, topple into the tub, ample-rumpus-over-teakettle! Where my cries for help to The Pony (Farmer H was at his Storage Unit Store) would have gone unanswered. Not only because he doesn't really care about helping people, but because he was at the other end of the Mansion, door closed, headphones in, listening to music while playing computer games.

I was extra careful the rest of the day, measuring out my steps with grabbable objects in mind if my knee tried to play magician again.

Getting old it terrible. But better than NOT getting old...

Saturday, December 12, 2020

Improvising With A Ponytail Guy's Non-Meat Protein

Yogurt was part of the FREE food in boxes that a Ponytail Guy brings to Farmer H and his cronies up at the storage units. I know I told you about the individual Dannon Strawberry Yogurts. They expired on December 5. We ate all but three of them. I'd say we probably had about 24, maybe more. Farmer H would bring them over to FRIG II about 8 at a time, and we'd have them as dessert. But not The Pony. He's not a fan.
This newest yogurt, of which we have three giant containers, is good until February. It's plain yogurt. I've used plain yogurt in the past, as a topping for baked potatoes, instead of using sour cream. But it's not something I'd sit down and eat as a snack or dessert. I'm not a fancy cook. 
I thought about adding fruit, like blueberries. That might not have been sweet enough for diabetic Farmer H. Besides, I'd have to wash them and pick out the shriveled blueberries and pull the stems off the ones that still had them. So I thought about other flavors of yogurt we've had before, and decided on CHERRY! I knew that I could pick up a can of cherry pie filling at Save A Lot. It doesn't get much easier than that! Just open the can, and stir it in.
Let the record show that this was a GIANT tub of yogurt. TWO POUNDS! And a big can of cherry pie filling, too!
The fine print on the yogurt said it is INDIAN STYLE. That made me pause. Does this yogurt sit in the tub with its legs folded, Indian style? Did Indians use yogurt a lot? I don't recall seeing any special items on the menu in the restaurants at the Indian casinos in Oklahoma. They had fry bread. That's a thing. But nothing yogurty.

THEN it hit me! That must mean dot, not feather! People from INDIA! I don't know much about their cuisine, except that it's spicy, and a lot vegetarian, and I think yogurt is used for some sauces. Don't hold me to that! You know my vast knowledge of world geography and cuisine... But I DO know words, and upon closer inspection, that brand name DAHI looks kind of Indian from India.

This is the state of our cherry yogurt right now. The first night, I spooned out plain yogurt into two bowls, and added some of the cherry pie filling to them. Stirred them up, and Farmer H and I feasted. That left room in the tub to add the rest of the can of cherry pie filling. It came out just right. I'm betting that it will be even more delicious after marinating together for a day or two.

Farmer H had the nerve to make a face upon sampling my cherry yogurt! I guess he was expecting ice cream. To me, it tasted exactly like the prepared small containers of cherry yogurt I've bought at the store. Just sweet enough, but still yogurt. And with generous whole-cherry chunks in ours!

Heh, heh! I find it fitting that Farmer H got the pit! He hollered from the living room, 

"Be careful when you eat your yogurt! I found a pit in a cherry!"

Even Steven is quite protective of me. And has a sense of humor.

Friday, December 11, 2020

Who? Who? Who Should Ms. HM Sue?

In answer to that question, probably her 9th grade English teacher. Because something tells me the title should be asking WHOM should Ms. HM sue. Oh, well. I'm pretty sure he's kicked the bucket by now. He was no spring chicken back then. And we SO enjoyed spending our 50-minute class period watching Wordsmith, which was a PBS program about word roots and their origins and meanings. At least I was thrilled. Perhaps my fellow freshmen not so much. I was even sorry to miss out on some episodes when I got sent home for having the measles. In 9th grade. Before those vaccinations were all the rage.

Anyhoo... I am less than pleased with some companies and entities lately. I'm making a list, and rather than checking it twice, I'll probably be adding to it. Here's the gist of it. With specific complaints.

FedEx: Lying incompetent employees know how to DELIVER a package. They just don't know how to deliver it to the RIGHT ADDRESS.

The Store Brand Olive People: Pack their olives in a circular pattern, making them SO HARD to get out of the tall narrow jar. At which time you notice that about 1 in 5 has no pimento stuffed in the hole. Oh, and there's at least one per jar that still has the PIT inside.

Ginger Evans Cherry Pie Filling: Save A Lot needs to fire her butt toot sweet! [That's technically tout de suite, but I'm not French.] Yes, I know that's a made-up entity and not a real person. But I wouldn't be surprised if ol' Ginger Evans is in cahoots with the olive people. Because her filling is filled with PITS.

The Country Mart Pinwheel Makers: Oh, I'm happy to find pinwheels for my lunches again. But now the makers have altered their ratios. If I want a salad, I'll buy a salad. Not a pinwheel that has more romaine lettuce rolled up in it than any other filling, including the half-a-tomato that still has that green center part in it that's crunchy. No way should a tomato be crunchy. Only the romaine. Both of them should be just a hint, with the meat and cheese taking the forefront.

The Pony: For taking my winning scratcher every day! Let the record show that I give him "charity." I allow him to choose ONE ticket from my purchases. For the past two days, he has chosen the WINNING ticket! $10 the first day, and $15 the next. 

The Casino Attendant: Who got all snotty with me when I hit the CALL ATTENDANT button because a slot machine would not cash out my ticket. More on that elsewhere.

Farmer H: Give me a reason NOT to sue him!

These lawsuits may never see the light of day. But it's a less harmless fantasy than some alternatives involving sharp implements.

Thursday, December 10, 2020

Thank The Gummi Mary He's Not A Criminal

Farmer H would be locked up, key at the bottom of a landfill, if he had criminal tendencies. He's just not a good liar. And he's always setting himself up to be caught. Like a couple days ago, when I noticed my Crocs out of place. The stalling game, rather than a quick denial of wearing them, while under interrogation, resulted in his conviction, though the judge and jury saved him from the executioner.

Tuesday, Farmer H returned to the Mansion for lunch, to heat up some hot dogs he'd grilled on Gassy G Jr, under the Christmas lights, the night before. He was moving things around in the kitchen, hollering to me in the living room, that he was going to bring some of the Ponytail Guy's milk over from the BARn. 

"This milk in here is bad," he said, peering at the date, then setting it back on the shelf.

"Wait a minute! Are you going to LEAVE it there? You just said it was bad! WHO does that? You picked it up, read the date, and PUT IT BACK! Do you think it's MY job to go in there and throw it out?"

Farmer H sighed, making sure I could hear it in the living room. He opened up FRIG II again, took out the milk, and left through the laundry room. He can't simply pour bad milk off the back porch. He has to soggy-up the dogs' dry food with it. I hope the squirrels like dog food cereal!

Seriously. That milk was in there for making some flavored noodle packets. We had not used it, because of so much Ponytail Guy freebies. The only usage had been Farmer H, having a glass with his cherry pie in the days after Thanksgiving. There was about half a half-gallon of milk left. Past the date. I don't think about milk, because I don't drink it. I wasn't cooking with it. So I figured if it was past the date, then Farmer H, the guy who'd been drinking it on a nightly basis, would have discarded it.

Which he DID. One way, or another...