|This has nothing to do with the article. The kid's impersonating me.|
ROOFTOP – Yes, I realize I misjudged the temperature out here by about 10 degrees. I thought the sun had been down long enough for things to cool off up here. I believe we’re at the point where things don’t cool off till mid-November.
Truth is, I don’t think it’s any hotter than it usually is at this time of year. I just used to handle the heat so much better. And, a few decades ago, I used to be able to eat canned spaghetti. Now, I have no tolerance for it. Has Boyardee altered his recipe, or has my palate become more sensitive due to an obsession with flossing.
Speaking of which, I was looking at The Courier’s contest for the Best of Montgomery County for 2014. When I began writing down my choices, I discovered that my taste in eating establishments has changed over time. Again, I don’t know if it’s the eating places or me who has changed.
Best Mexican food restaurant? I don’t have a clue. There are only 362 in the County. I could come much closer to picking my favorite pickle. The best breakfast place has changed for me. I’m now voting for The Toasted Yolk. And, that’s crazy, ‘cause I don’t even like my yolks toasted.
Best burger? I don’t eat bad burgers. On the Mark and Cindy Show, our listeners voted for Whataburger as the best “fast food” burger. It won by a landslide. McDonalds won for Best Fast Food Rib Sandwich. I’ve never had one.
You even get to vote on Best Funeral Home. I prefer the one where the mortician doesn’t make fun of me while he’s getting me prepared. I don’t want to hear one of them say something like, “Wow, look at the size of that honker! He shoulda donated it to one of them beluga whales at Sea World.” I get enough of that kind of talk while I’m alive. I don’t need to hear it when I’m dead.
Anyway, there are a lot of difficult decisions to be made on the “Best of Montgomery County” ballot. If I filled it all out, I’d have to make up stuff. Best Spot for Singles, Best Chiropractor, Veterinarian, Nail Salon, Boutique-- Boutique? I recognize the name. I’ve even used the name. But when I did, I wasn’t sure what I was talking about. I do that occasionally. – Beg pardon? No, you definitely said something.
Speaking of the lawn, it’s less than half mowed. I figured I’d mention it before one of you did. Just the other side of the big oak is as far as I got yesterday before I nearly stroked. I don’t push myself as much as I used to. More to the point, I don’t push my mower as far as I used to.
I don’t know if the yard is expanding or it’s just too hot and I’m way out of shape. Something has turned an afternoon job into a two-day chore. I think you’re right. The yard is growing. If you scratch this thing, you’re going to find fracking to be the culprit.
That’s weird. Five years ago had you mentioned fracking, I would have thought it was a new game that involved surgical gloves. -- Now we know it as a question to an answer on Jeopardy. – “Is causing earthquakes in Oklahoma.” – What is fracking, Alex? I’ll take “Things You Shouldn’t Scratch” for 500.
Okay, let’s forget the fracking, the funeral homes and the fast food, and listen to the night sounds for a minute. Yes, some of those are cicadas we’re hearing, but some of that is toad talk. No frogs around here, but the toads are back..
I was replacing a couple of leaky outdoor faucets last week, and when I opened the cover to the shutoff valve from the waterline, there was a big fat toad sitting in the dirt in an apparent state of deep thought. I don’t know how it got in there. I assume it squeezed through the little hole in the lid back when it was just a toadette. Now it was much more than that. It was a fat toad.
I’ve never been much for picking up toads. Kay’s a toad handler. She’s comfortable grabbing turtles, toads and turkeys… occasionally at the same time. I’m good with ladybugs and uh… Only ladybugs. Unfortunately, Kay wasn’t home at the moment of my toad sighting, so it was up to me.
In some instances I ask myself the tried and true question – What would Jesus do? That’s good if an old lady cuts in front of you at the checkout in the grocery store, but not for toad removal. For that, I ask myself – What would Rambo do?
Rambo would stab the toad with his 20-inch bowie knife, the one with the saw-teeth near the hilt. I was knifeless, so I just braced myself and grabbed the toad. It didn’t feel all that bad, but I didn’t want to make a game of it, so I just set it in the grass and then tried to shut off the valve with my giant valve turning thing.
While I was wrestling with the valve, the toad eased itself back into the hole. I’m not joking. What a toad! I grabbed the stupid thing and carried it over to the flowerbed down yonder. That was a couple of weeks ago. Something tells me that that thing is half submerged in the cool dirt next to the shut off valve.
The thing is smarter than we are. It’s way too warm up here. I’m about ready to climb down and dig us a cool hole in the front yard. The only thing keeping me from it is the fear that Rambo might show up.
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