My Novels

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Mad Cow...Again

Feds: Safeguards Working Amid Mad Cow Case

Jun 25, 9:00 AM (ET)


WASHINGTON (AP) - The United States has what may be its first homegrown case of mad cow disease, confirmed a full seven months after officials first suspected the animal might be infected. Despite the delay in reliable results, the government says the food safeguards are working well.

You know, color me paranoid...but IMO when that FIRST case of Mad Cow was revealed in the USA, I had suspicions that we are already having an outbreak here, albeit largely among the elderly. And remember, it takes YEARS for the end-effects of Mad Cow disease in humans to show up. Think of all the many, many cases of Alzheimers now rampant among middle-age to elderly Americans. Yep, we all may have it, just don't know it yet. Could it be possible that Alzheimers is a variant of Mad Cow?

The sad thing is that now DH and I don't eat red meat, I have grown to dislike it. The last time I tried to eat red meat, it tasted bad -- which, I'm sure, is due to the fact I'm NOT eating it now. I am almost the same way with poultry too, and of course, we primarily eat beans and veggie replacements made from soy and bean products. Humans don't need meat; they need the protein, which they CAN get from other food sources. But the cattle industry is sure to squelch this latest news of Mad Cow, drown out the news with their own business interests ads.

So it goes here... Actually though, the "revenge of the animals" continues anyway: cholesterol is a killer (whether causing heart disease or cancer), and poultry is full of antibiotics which are causing US to be antibiotic resistant, on and on. Go figure, huh?

Well DH has all his buddies out in the pasture, helping with the barn building. The huge truck with equipment to lift the massive steel trusses arrived at 7:30 and will stay until it's done. A friend in construction sent the truck, free of charge. I packed a bunch of snacks/drinks, as well as water in coolers for them all, and that should tide them over until lunch -- which DH will pay for at a nearby restaurant. So it will be a long day, and it is verrry hot already.

I have lots of cleaning/chores to get done this coming week, since all my family will be here next Sunday for a July 4th get-together. Odds and ends I've been putting off, like touch-up painting, in-depth cleaning, etc. Busy, busy week ahead!

Late yesterday afternoon I went on the "Killer Loop" bike ride again, and did the five miles in 25 minutes! That is good time, considering the steep, steep hills and curves, bridges, railroad crossings that I ride through. There was literally NO traffic, which helped my pace, but it was breathlessly still, hot, stifling. That is probably why no one was out. I hope DH will get a bike soon, and we can explore other back-roads along that highway loop. [As an aside, last week when I went on that ride, a train was not faraway down the track. I stopped just past the crossing, and waited and watched it pass. Wish I'd had my camera!]

And with that, I'm outta here for today.

Thursday, June 23, 2005


Do you know who is responsible for these quotes?

When an opponent declares, "I will not come over to your side," I calmly say, "Your child belongs to us already... What are you? You will pass on. Your descendants, however, now stand in the new camp. In a short time they will know nothing else but this new community."

"The leader of genius must have the ability to make different opponents appear as if they belonged to one category."

"The great masses of the people will more easily fall victims to a big lie than to a small one."

"The broad masses of a population are more amenable to the appeal of rhetoric than to any other force."

"The great strength of the totalitarian state is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it."

"How fortunate for leaders that men do not think."

"Who says I am not under the special protection of God?"


Kinda scary to realize this was all said by Adolph Hitler, when it seems our own dear Prez is following just such philosophy. Something to think about -- for those of you who DO think.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Hot & Muggy in South

Ah, the long, lazy southern days! Well...maybe not lazy, but very long and plenty of heat/humidity. But we have been getting rain almost nightly, which is making our garden produce wonderfully. I can't keep ahead of the squash, so we gave the neighbors some yesterday.

I've not been on my bike ride in a couple days, using the airbike indoors due to the heat. At least I am getting some exercise though. And I've finally figured out how to convert CD music files to MP3 format, download them onto the RioPort MP3 player my nephew gave me. That means at least I don't get too bored using the airbike, since I listen to music while exercising.

DH went to a new cardiologist today, and likes him. He will continue with his medication for a few more months, then have a re-evaluation. But the new doc said not to start another medication prescribed by the other cardiologist, that aerobic exercise would serve just as well. I'm glad about that, since I DO worry about the side-effects of all the many high-powered medications he's taking. Now if I can just get him on a bicycle to ride the "killer loop" with me! :-)

Not much else to report today.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005


The man of the house!

The husband had just finished the book "Man of the House."

He stormed into the house and walked directly up to his wife.

Pointing a finger in her face, he said, "From now on, I want you to know that I am the man of this house, and my word is law! I want you to prepare me a gourmet meal tonight, and when I'm finished eating my meal, I expect a tasty dessert afterward. Then, after dinner and dessert, you're going to draw me a bath so I can relax. And when I'm finished with my bath, guess who's going to dress me and comb my hair?"

His wife replied, "The f*cking funeral director!"


You know you're an extreme redneck when...
You're an extreme redneck when ...

1. You let your 14-year-old daughter smoke at the dinner table in front of her kids.

2. The Blue Book value of your truck goes up and down depending on how much gas is in it.

3. You've been married three times and still have the same in-laws.

4. You think a woman who is "out of your league" bowls on a different night.

5. You wonder how service stations keep their restrooms so clean.

6. Someone in your family died right after saying, "Hey, guys, watch this."

7. You think Dom Perignon is a Mafia leader.

8. Your wife's hairdo was once ruined by a ceiling fan.

9. Your junior prom offered day care.

10. You think the last words of the "Star-Spangled Banner" are "Gentlemen, start your engines."

11. You lit a match in the bathroom and your house exploded right off its wheels.

12. The Halloween pumpkin on your porch has more teeth than your spouse.

13. You have to go outside to get something from the fridge.

14. One of your kids was born on a pool table.

15. You need one more hole punched in your card to get a freebie at the House of Tattoos.

16. You can't get married to your sweetheart because there's a law against it.

17. You think loading the dishwasher means getting your wife drunk.

From: My Secret Fantasy Blog

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Photos & Update

At long last, DH has the new barn started. This has been his dream from the first, but it's taken a long time get around to building.

The barn will be located almost in the center of the five acres, away from the house. For now, he has the basic structure laid out, and that's about all he can do by himself. Next Saturday a group of our friends will arrive and help him get the trusses set-up, as well as some of the interior structure. Perhaps even some of the metal up too. Picture to follow this entry -- just the basic structure.

I have just about all the programs I use on this new Emachines now. Unfortunately I learned that my older digital camera is not compatible with Windows XP, therefore I have to store my pictures on my laptop, which has Windows 2000 professional and is compatible. I will just upload photos from the laptop when I want to post any here. I got the modem working on the laptop by contacting tech support, no problem.

We've had two unseasonably mild days here, and it has been glorious! Near 85 during the day, low humidity, a light wind. I've been puttering around outdoors in the yard/garden until near dark at 8:30 every evening.

I also ride my bike every afternoon, and even managed to tackle the "killer loop" of five miles. I guess the airbike has been keeping me in shape, for I still had the stamina to endure it!

I also have had fresh yellow squash, cucumbers, and green beans from my garden. Delicious! And I'm happy to report that DH and I have almost become vegetarians! Except for an occasional meal of chicken breast, we eat veggie burgers/ground crumblers, etc found in the frozen foods. Either the Boca or GardenFresh brand names; their veggie selections are amazingly good. In fact, the few times I've tasted red meat in the past month or tasted..."off." I know that is due to having lost my taste for meat though. We also eat a lot of dried/cooked beans such as pintos, navy, great northern, etc. Lots of fiber and good for you! A salad almost every night, with the fresh lettuce from our garden.

All that, plus medication, must be working for DH: his cholesterol level is 115! I plan to get a home kit soon and check mine, just out of curiosity, since I rarely eat any fat/cholesterol either.

My cats are all fat and sassy. I have a pretty picture of Bitty Kitty taken last night; she loves to lounge on the bench in our den, and it was easy to get this shot.

I'm reading a Stephen King novel, "Bag of Bones." Though I usually don't like King's horror stories, this one is different: it is a supernatural story involving an old house. So far it is absorbing, and has had no gross-out descriptions.

I'm planning on having my family here for July 4th, and have quite a bit of housecleaning, etc. to get accomplished before then. My sister who recently had breast cancer surgery is doing fine; the drains were removed last week, and she almost seems back to her normal self. I know it'll take more recuperation time, but at least her progress seems to be going well. Anyhow, we should have a fun July 4th -- the first family gathering I've had here since we moved in over a year and a half ago.

And with that, I'm outta here for today!

BittyKitty looking relaxed Posted by Hello

Barn layout, DH working... Posted by Hello

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Still Setting Up Programs

I'm still working on getting all my favorite programs downloaded/installed into this new PC. I couldn't save most of them, due to the CD-RW having gone bad in the old PC, though I AM hoping the guy who's buying the old one will still find a way to save all the many, many digital photos I had saved.

I do have most of the necessary stuff installed, like printer/camera/etc. but it's taking a long time to get everything the way I want it, considering how many programs I use.

Additionally, I have errands to run today in town, plus the usual daily tasks. DH and I weeded the veggie garden one afternoon, and late yesterday afternoon I went on a long bike ride. I finally got the bike tires aired up, and it was JOY to ride again. I won't go every afternoon, only when the weather is nice and I have the time. Otherwise, I use the airbike at night.

More when I have time. For now, there's a new poll on the right sidebar for those interested in the futuristic question! Please vote, if you've ever wondered about such a situation. As for my vote: a resounding YES. The older I get, the LESS I like anything physical -- and to be quite honest, the life of mind/imagination/intellect has always been a priority over the physical self with me. (And no, the question has nothing to do with vague spiritual musings.)

Till next time...

Sunday, June 12, 2005

New PC

It's a long, verrrry long story...but suffice to say I'm writing this new post on a NEW computer. My old '97 model Compaq was on the verge of dying, and I'd been looking for a new PC, but had not found anything (online or offline) that I truly wanted.

Friday afternoon, along with the frequent freezes/crashes on the old PC, a LOUD roar started coming from the hard drive and I knew that meant a hard drive failure was about to happen. I exercised strict caution in shutting it down, then only using to save what files/programs I could without total drive failure. By Saturday afternoon I had saved the most important material, but knew that was pushing it, to say the least. At any rate, my laptop ALSO was suffering from some sort of modem problem, and I couldn't get online with it either. Therefore, I decided I'd buy the Emachines Model W3052 PC at Wal-Mart.

One of my sisters has had two Emachines, and says she never had any problems! Others I know have bought Dells and Gateways (btw, Gateway now owns Emachines), and have had serious trouble -- but fortunately all within the warranty period. I have had two "refurbished PCs" and from the very first, problems. I knew I wanted a brand NEW one this time.

At any rate, I bought the Emachines at Wal-Mart for $592.00 -- flat 17" CRT monitor, speakers, keyboard, mouse AND hard drive with 512 MG of RAM, 120 GB hard drive space, and a 3000 Sempron processor, DVD-RW (double layer). Have a full year's warranty, with l5 day guarantee of full refund at the local Wal-Mart (and that is more important than one would think, since I can carry it back if it suddenly goes AWOL).

I'm verrrry pleased so far. It is very quiet, compared to the old Compaq; it is fast, easy to learn Windows XP home edition, and I'm have FUN at the computer compared to the ordeal it had become in the past six months of crashes/freezes.

Anyhow, this isn't much of a post, just an update to record what is happening here. If anyone has sent email, I promise to answer soon. I'm still getting my favorite programs downloaded, installed and other things (QuickPad, Palm, etc) attached and set-up, so please be patient.

That's it for today, since Sunday is a day with DH.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005


1. He'd've brung a fishing pole with him when he walked on water.

2. His last words on the cross would have been, "Hey, Paul, I kin see my house from up here."

3. He'd be famous for turning water into beer.

4. The prayer for the Passover meal would have been, "Good food, good meat, good God, let's eat."

5. His front yard would have been littered with broken down mule carts.

6. Instead of a grail, King Arthur would been searching for the Holy Beer Mug.

7. He would have cured blindness by yelling, "Yer healed" and slapping people on the forehead.

8. The disciples would have included Billy Bob, Scooter, and Bubba.

9. Sex, drinking, and dancing would clearly have been declared not sinful.

10. Instead of a fish, the symbol for Jesus would be a fishing lure.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Just a brief update to say I've been home a few days, just busy. This darn computer is still acting up, and looks like I'll soon have to buy another one. About the time I think it is going to be okay, it freezes and crashes.

We had lots of rain here last week, and my garden has become a lush jungle. Picture to follow.

More when I can get this infernal PC to work better -- or I switch to my laptop. Just wanted to update.

Something to think about:

A teacher asked her students, "In your own words, write about food shortages in other countries." All four students raised their hands. The Chinese kid asked, "What are my own words?" The African kid asked, "What's food?" The European kid asked, "What's a shortage?" The American kid asked, "What are other countries?"

Garden after lots of rain... Posted by Hello

Thursday, June 02, 2005

I'm staying at a friend's place, someone I met via email/writing a few years ago, and it has been VERY relaxing! In the Arkansas Ozarks, I'm in a rustic log cabin surrounded by wilderness...and nothing but nature's soothing sounds. I have always wondered what it would be like to be totally alone, no human in sight and have REAL solitude. It IS least for awhile. But then, one does begin to feel a bit isolated.

Imagine, no tv, no radio, no newspaper...nothing of the outside world to intrude. I have made some progress on writing too, and that is the best part of this retreat. But tomorrow I will head home, and back to all the distractions of my life. However, I certainly have gained some perspective on my personal problems, which seem unimportant in the greater scheme of things. Living in a wilderness area has had a great impact in that regard.

More when I'm home again.