It Takes All Kinds

“He felt a headache at the first note, and it flipped multiple aggravation switches in his brain” – Red on Red by Edward Conlon

It Takes All Kinds

How often has that phrase been uttered? Usually out of frustration with an individual or maybe even by inflicted pain. An assault on decency and common sense.

Millions. And that’s just in my lifetime. And what exactly does it mean? That the world must be populated with rude, arrogant, malicious, cretins to give our lives balance?

NOOOOOOOOOOOOO…………………… DOES NOT take all kinds.

Think how wonderful our lives would be without politicians, criminals, lawyers, arrogant Doctors, rude neighbors, and anyone else whose existence is justified with the phrase IT TAKES ALL KINDS.

Just Sayin.

“How crazy do you have to be before you are crazy?” – Red on Red by Edward Conlon

Posted in All kinds, America, Behavior, Gate Guard, human, life, Rude, sex, Texas | 2 Comments

Cliff: episode 365

People were not what they said. They were not what they thought. They were not what they promised. People were what they did. When the final tally was done, nothing else mattered.” – “House of the Rising Sun” by James Lee Burke

Morning Cliff. How’s the weather down there?

Not as hot but still hot. 98 or so. You?

A bit cooler up here. 92.

That’s because you have more air conditioners up there.

Huh? I was referring to the outside temp.

Ya. Me too.

Well what do air conditioners have to do with the outside temp?

More people equal more homes with air conditioners. And, when they open their doors to go in or out, some of that A/C cooled air gets out and cools the outside air.

(30 second pause ended with a gasp)

Need to take my meds Cliff…………talk to you later.

 “When all sound is gone, the mind struggles to orient itself.” – Edward Unspooled by Craig Lancaster

Posted in America, Behavior, Books, Conversations, friendship, Gate Guard, life, Strange, Texas | Leave a comment

A Time And A Place

“If there was any persuasive argument for the existence of God, it wasn’t in the biology of things, but in emotion, in feelings.” – Hurt Machine by Reed Farrel Coleman

This morning I watched a video of Patti Page singing one of my favorite songs – “The Tennessee Waltz”.

I remember the first time I heard her sing it. It had to be 1950, give or take a year and I would have been about 7 years old. I can clearly recall the time and the place and the mood.

As Patti began to sing, I remember without any of the distortion of time, how the music, lyrics, and that wonderful voice affected me. I had never, in my short life, heard anything so beautiful or so sad.

Through the years, every time I’ve heard Patti sing that song, I pass back through the years to that moment in time when I was very young. How wonderful it was to be so innocent.

For you see, I believed the story. I believed that her heart was broken when her friend stole her sweetheart. And I cried.

And today as I listened, I shed a tear. Not only for the song but for what life has taken from me. I would give anything to be that pure of heart once more.

“I’m so sad and I don’t know how to fix it” – Edward Unspooled by Craig Lancaster

Posted in America, Behavior, child, human, Innocent, life, Music, Patti Page, Song, Texas, Youth | Leave a comment

Foo Foo

I asked God for a bike, but I know God doesn’t work that way. So I
stole a bike and asked for forgiveness.”

Foo Foo. It’s a generic term for all things feminine such as fruit, nuts, anything pink, organic, yogurt, health food, anything devoid of taste, any food product with words like organic, natural or healthy on the label and so forth and so on.

All things not associated with testosterone. Male stuff. Man stuff. Red meat. Potatoes. Butter. Bread. Sugar. Stuff with fat. Artery cement. Stuff like that.

Foo Foo makes my skin crawl. Scares me. I think.

So this morning Gaby rather blithely informs me she made ice cream last night.

Immediately alarms go off. This is not gonna be good.

What kind of ice cream I ask. Not really wanting to know. Because I already know.


Oh God. Please help me. Don’t let her ask me to taste it. Please.

She made it with fat free milk, almond extract, a banana, some other stuff I barely recognize. She says. I want you to taste it and give me your opinion.


This is not going to end well for me.

If I do the sensible thing and tell her it is good………………she’ll keep making it and expecting me to eat it. Forget Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla. And thus would begin the emasculation of Bob.

Come on Bob. Don’t be such a sissy. Just one taste and then tell me what you think.



Oh come on you big baby. Here we go.


It tastes awful. A conundrum.  If I tell her truth, I  could end up in the dog house for several days. And, I’ll probably be reminded of this insult 5 years from now, at which time I will have absolutely no idea what she’s talking about. Defenseless.

If I choose the lesser of two evils and advise her its fine, I’ll be eating this stuff for the rest of my life.

Send flowers. And Blue Bell.

“I didn’t say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.”

Posted in America, Behavior, Conversations, health, health food, human, life, men, prayer, Texas, women | 1 Comment

Cold Spell

“Common sense aided by present danger, will sometimes be too strong for whimsical opinions” – Franklin by Thomas Fleming

I’m watching an episode of the “The Last Alaskans”. Just about my favorite show thing to do. The show archives the daily lives of 4 families living north of the Arctic Circle.

Most of their struggles involve surviving the winters. Duh.

So this guy named Heimo is working his trap lines out there in the middle of nothing. Miles and miles and miles of ice and snow. On a snowmobile. So much clothing and fur on him that he looks like Sasquatch. For sure.

Even though his environment is my version of hell, I’m digging it.

So he wants to cross a river on his snowmobile to hunt on the other side. To do this he must first test the ice. Is the river frozen enough to support the weight.

Apparently it isn’t. Seems the area, according to Heimo, got hit with a heat wave and much of the ice melted. The temps rose from -50 F to -6 F. A HEAT WAVE?

I have never in my life associated -6 F with heat of any kind. Nor have I ever known a single human being who would. Except Heimo.

Around here……………….+79 F is a cool spell. Anything below +50 F is a cold spell.

Just sayin.

“Anyone is capable of anything, given the right set of circumstances” – Harbor Nocturne by Joseph Wambaugh

Posted in America, Behavior, death, escape, health, human, life, Texas, TV | 4 Comments

A Good Book

“Poor fella, goes in for a prostate exam and the doctor slips on a pair of 2XX large rubber gloves” – The Long and Faraway Gone” by Lou Berney

At my age, a good book is better than sex. Just kidding. Not. Whatever.

I get lost in good literature. The pages and language absorb me. Within them, I am blind to the madness of our times.

So………………I feel terrible when I give up on a book too soon. How could I know I had done that you ask? Because I have a friend who is always eager to tell me – “You gave up on that book? Wow. That was one of the greatest books I’ve ever read.”

Thanks Harry. You couldn’t just leave me in ignorant bliss. Could you!!!!!

Still love ya buddy.

“Bad people can do good things” – Harry Bellerby

Posted in America, Behavior, Books, life, sex, Texas | Leave a comment

Point vs counter point.

“I hope there’s some revenge out there somewhere. I don’t know if there’s another way to make it right” – The innocents by Ace Atkins

I do enjoy a good book. Well written. Interesting plot. Plausible characters. Heaven.

However, I get so emotionally involved with them that sometimes they leave me exhausted. I can only tolerate so much tragedy and triumph. Now and then I need a break.

At those times I resort to the old standby: quick read – transparent – nonsense laced with mindless violence and the good guys always win.

Characters like Jack Reacher, Hawk, and Virgil do the trick. Or, on rare occasions, I’ll simply read the newspaper or catch the body count on the 5 o’clock news.

Wonder why that is!?

Balance maybe? Point vs counter point.

“I tend to believe what people tell me, especially if it confirms my expectations” – True Story by Michael Finkel

Posted in America, Behavior, Books, death, escape, evil, Gate Guard, human, NEWS, Revenge, Texas | 2 Comments


“At my age, the only thing that’ll get me in trouble is too much stool softener” – “Redemption Street” by Reed Farrel Coleman

So I called Cliff this morning.

Hi Bob……what’s up?

Just checking on you. Are you at the same gate?

No. Moved to a new gate yesterday.

Where are you?

About 7 miles East of Artesia Wells on a county road.

Do you like it?

Yes. The cows and I are getting to know each other.

So you’re on a Ranch?

Yes. I have to keep the gate closed so the cows won’t get out.

Isn’t there a cattle guard?

Yes but they still want it closed.

That is so stupid. Don’t you just hate it when stupid people are in charge?!

Guess that makes me really stupid. Stupid people are telling me to do stupid things.

In some ways I’ll be glad when I’m on the other side of the dirt and don’t have to deal with all the B.S. anymore.

So Bob…….are you choosing cremation or a casket when the time comes?

Don’t know. Neither option appeals to me. It would be neat to just ascend. What about you?

I want to be buried in a plastic box with the word Tupperware on the side.

What? Why?

 Plastic doesn’t deteriorate and therefore my remains will last forever.

Bye Cliff.

“The time you have is like spooled thread. It comes off, little bit by little bit, until there’s nothing left.” – Edward Unspooled by Craig Lancaster

Posted in America, Behavior, Conversations, death, friendship, Gate Guard, life, life span, Texas | Leave a comment


“People fear what they don’t understand or what is different.” – Hurt Machine by Reed Farrel Coleman

Seems like I regularly question my core values. Tragic events stop me in my tracks. Why did that happen? Any logic involved?

The important consideration is not who or how but why? Me…….I want to know why and most of the time there is no good answer.

Damn. Shouldn’t it all be simpler? Obvious?

What I just can’t figure out is why we humans can’t live and let live.

There must be a reason. Don’t you think?

Wish I could blissfully go through each day without challenging my brain like this.

It would be nice to just accept what is.

Wouldn’t it?

“If you can’t prove God doesn’t exist, you better act like he does” – “Redemption Street” by Reed Farrel Coleman

Posted in America, Behavior, harm, human, life, misery, Texas, Uncategorized, universe | 2 Comments

Give me a break…….PLEASE.

“People do not have to die to go to hell” – “The Jealous Kind” by James Lee Burke

It is so difficult to get a break from the daily trials and tribulations of the human race. However, the fact remains that we all NEED a break. Otherwise we may lose our minds.

Our psyches were not formulated to sustain sanity in the face of constant, omnipresent mayhem.

Several years ago, as I entered my seventh decade on the planet, I began a process of withdrawal from the mainstream news dispensers of all types. Broadcast – Print – Conversation. I just don’t give a damn what others think anymore.

So, this diatribe is not an attempt to convert anyone to my side of the tracks. I’m just venting.

Sports, especially college football, has been a great escape for me. So this morning I’m watching ESPN to catch up on all of the games played yesterday. This is cool. All kinds of upsets and wonderful stories. Good stuff.

Then it all goes south. Quickly. Suddenly my senses are assaulted with the latest re: Colin Kaepernick and his immature demonstrations. This is followed by more examinations of various reactions, both pro and con. On and on ad nauseam.

Is there no escaping the crush of misery?

Blood is oozing out of my ears.

“Life will go better for you the less you’re bothered by people and their dumb habits” – Edward Unspooled by Craig Lancaster

Posted in America, Behavior, Conversations, escape, health, life, misery, NEWS, Texas | 7 Comments