2023 — Not Off to a Good Start

When I woke up yesterday morning at 7:30, after very good night’s sleep, I was feeling refreshed and eager to experience the first day of the new year. The rain that drenched our area had stopped and the sky was a brilliant blue without a cloud in the sky.

I savored my morning coffee, read the Sunday paper, ate my breakfast, trimmed my beard, and took a shower. I was feeling great.

At around 10:30, my wife and I went to our back deck and sat in our swing chair to enjoy the sunshine and relatively mild temperatures and to watch the birds frolicking in the waterfall. Or dog was on the deck with us, busy chomping away on no-hide bone. Everything was wonderfully serene.

At around 11:45, the dog got up and started walking around, a sure sign that nature called. I got up and grabbed her leash and walked her to the spot where she usually takes care of business. Sure enough, she pooped. I pulled a poop bag out of my back jeans pocket, dropped the leash, and picked up her poop in the bag.

When I dropped her leash, she took off like a bat out of hell, and started zooming around the backyard. I saw her as she was heading toward me, her leash whipping in the air behind her. As she zoomed past me, her leash wrapped around my legs like a cowboy’s lariat wraps around the legs of a calf at a roping competition. Suddenly my legs went out from under me and I landed flat on my back.

And flat on my back in bed is where I spent most of New Year’s Day. Taking Advil every four hours, chewing a CBD gummy every six hours, and trying to lie as still as possible to avoid severe and agonizing lower back muscle spams.

Yes, 2023 is not off to a good start. For me, anyway. I hope it was better for you.

Thursday Inspiration — Me or the Dog

“Absolutely not!” Jim said to Darlene. “When I agreed to let you bring this fleabag dog home from the pet store, you promised that you would keep it off of our bed. So what do you do? You go out and buy steps so that hound of yours can use them to climb up on our bed. I won’t have it, dammit.”

“But honey, he’s so cute and when he climbs up on the bed, he stays on my side, cuddles up next to me, and loves to snuggle, which, by the way, is more than you ever do anymore,” Darlene said.

“I don’t care,” Jim said. “You made me a promise and I’m going to hold you to it. I will not have that mutt in our bed. Now where did you get that step thing? I’m going to take it back and get a refund.”

“You’re not taking it back,” Darlene insisted. “And if I want the dog to sleep in our bed all snuggled up next to me, he will.”

“It’s me or the dog, Darlene,” Jim said.

Darlene smiled. “Bye, Jim,” she said.


Written for Jim Adams’ Thursday Inspiration prompt, where we can use the prompt word step, or going with the above picture, or by means of the song ‘Hold On,’ or by going with another song by Wilson Phillips, or anything else that you think fits.

Does this fit?

Cellpic Sunday — 10/23/22

John Steiner, the blogger behind Journeys With Johnbo, has this prompt he calls Cellpic Sunday in which he asks us to post a photo that was taken with a cellphone, tablet, or another mobile device. I thought this might be fun so I decided to join in.

This photo below was taken with my iPhone a while back when I was walking my dog. The homemade sign intrigued me as I was wondering what the nature of the duties a dog might have that this property owner objected to.

If you wish to participate in this fun cellphone photo prompt, please click on the link to John’s post at the top of my post to see his photo and to read his instructions.

Fandango’s Flashback Friday — July 29th

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of your earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember? Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year.

How about you? Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 29th) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.

This was originally posted on July 29, 2017 when we still lived in the city.


Pest Control

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A present from our cat

I live in a high density urban environment and a fact of life when living in the big city is pests. Pests like mice, raccoons, and rats.

But my wife and I have enlisted an efficient and economical method of pest control. We have a dog and a cat.

Our dog is an effective deterrent when it comes to raccoons. Whenever she sees or even senses a raccoon, she’s off to the races, running the critter up a tree or over a fence. She also goes after squirrels and gophers with the same zeal. So far, though, she has yet to catch any of her prey.

Our cat, on the other hand, is a more adept hunter. On more than one occasion, he has presented us with a gift in the form of a recently deceased mouse or rat, like the poor rat in the picture above. It’s then my job to pick up the spoils of my cat’s hunt in a baggie and deposit it into the trash, while my wife rewards our cat for its offering by giving him a treat.

So forget about hiring expensive pest control companies. Pets are the best form of pest control.


This is my entry for today’s WordPress one-word prompt, “pest.”

My Last Photo — June ‘22

Brian, aka Bushboy, posted his monthly Last on the Card prompt, where he asks us to…

  • Post the last photo from your camera’s SD card or the last photo from your phone taken in June.
  • No editing — who cares if it is out of focus, not framed as you would like, or the subject matter didn’t cooperate?
  • No explanations needed — just the photo will do.
  • Create a pingback to Brian’s post or link in the comments.
  • Tag “The Last Photo.”

So here’s the last photo I took on my iPhone in June.