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July 11, 2014 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Ironing out the ironies.

(Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co.) Alfred Palmer, 1906-1993/US PD: by fed. employee/

Dunderhead dodgeball? (Ironically, so many wrinkles there. A weak end.)

Is it any wonder with the Dawn of the Planet of the Apes movie opening that there are copy cats?

Guess you can kick animals around just so long before they retaliate and take matters into their own hooves, jaws, or antlers.

First it was the aggressive cow, then that mad cat Kush, and, now? Better be wary of Bambi. (In all fairness, that last one started at the liquor store…you know they can’t handle whiskey.)

Perhaps that Planet of the Apes movie trailer gave them the motivation to get organized: “Taking it back!”

In retrospect, ticks with their Lyme Disease arsenal were the first assault? (Might note: the deer may have been in cahoots with the ticks from the very beginning?)

Odd, anyway.

1933 RKO Radio Picture.Roland Coudon/US PD:pub date/

Hard to ignore the 2,000 pound gorilla in the room.(1933RKO.Roland Coudon/US PD:pub date/

Difficult dilemma facing so many currently. Futures hang in the balance. Choose wisely!

Is 88 million dollars over four years enough to make basketball player Bosh commit to play for the Houston Rockets? (Depends if he’s been here to witness the sweltering heat – but the AC works great! Besides he’s used to the Heat.)

Will Rocket’s basketball player Chandler Parsons stay in Houston or jump to Dallas for $46 million over three years? (Who can blame him. He’s considered one of the most underpaid player in the NBA with his current deal. Never accept less than you are worth. Whatever the market will bear.)

Oh, the posturing and pouting. Andre Johnson is one of the best NFL receivers ever. $14.6 million for 2014 (base salary plus pro-rated signing bonus) Oh, and $1 million Workout Bonus if he participates in the off-season program – which he didn’t do. Missing the mandatory mini training camp, he was fined $70,000. (He offered to come but only if they paid him the Workout Bonus. But the team refused, so he was MIA) Discouraged, he wants to be traded. Ironically, by today’s standards, he is underpaid. But who would turn down $588,234 a week for about 17 weeks?

1933. King Kong poster/US not renewed/artist life/

“Fame, fortune, planes, women – it’s not enough. It’s never enough. Why don’t you see?”(1933/US

Certainly not Chelsea. She’s bound to be wearing out her shoes with all the speaking engagements. $75,000.00 hardly buys for anything anymore.

Good thing she can talk.

(Who knew words could be worth so much?)

Perhaps the well-heeled and well played individuals will show their sensitive side.

They are bound to have a spare room or two. So many need a roof over their heads – and don’t mind sharing a bathroom or even a bed.

Homeland Security, HHS, even local CPS are looking for foster homes. All it takes is  a call! They’re waiting by the phones now.

Think of all the positive PR that would result. Can’t buy that kind of publicity!

Woman Ironing. 1882-1945. NARA:NLFDR/USPD. by fed employee/

Ironically, everyone loves company – no matter the preparation required. (NARA/USPD/

Thinking along those “can’t buy that” lines, totally baffled with the hypocrisy irony and mixed messages by the Federal Government and President.

No time – or need – for photo ops at the border to see the problems first hand, but lots of pictures of a smiling President with pool tables and young girls during his trip to Austin (To raise money for his political party – not for the needy.)

(…Although he could have passed the hat among attendees and used his bully pulpit to encourage giving to the poor “children/mostly pre-teens and teenagers” coming over the border. Who wouldn’t want to help the children? He could have asked.)

Surely the shelters would have gladly screen for contagious diseases, scabies, and lice before letting kids near a visiting compassionate President.

Besides if they were a risk, the agencies wouldn’t be putting them on public transportation and moving them among the public.

So why the President passed up a chance to kiss and hug babies is confusing.

Could have been a real vote getter. Political coin!

Just buying time, until a solution appears, I guess. No other reason.

1941-1945 poster by Norman Rockwell 1894-1978.NARA/US PD: by Fed employee:, artist life/

What were they thinking? Created and produced by the US Federal government. Religion considered an available tool in the Federal tool box whenever applicable? (Rockwell/NARA/US PD:

Not sure if they’ve seen the light or are light-headed right now.

There was such outrage that Hobby Lobby’s owners firmly hold to their religious beliefs. Close on Sunday and about that birth control for employees.(Won’t bore you, you’ve heard it all.)

So many yelling: “It’s in the public arena. Religion has no place!”

Yet when faced with a public crisis the same ones are yelling: “Live your faith! What would Jesus do? Take in the weak and sick. Take the Little children into your homes!”

Talk about being two-faced as needed. Maybe it’s the “Forget and Forgive” thing.

So elementary school-ish: “You’re not my friend – go away. I hate you. I wish you were dead.”

Then later when need arises, “Oh, sweetie, can I borrow that? Can I see your math homework? Only want to see if we got the same answers…Can you hold my purse while I dance – thanks. And oh, the cat needs feeding, mind?”

Maybe it’s like nasty medicine: “Hold your nose and swallow. It’s for your own good.”

Even little kids being dosed won’t believe that.

Women at work Dept of Labor.Women's Bureau.NARA/USPD. By fed. employee/

Ironically, hard-working people understand pressing situations and want things straightened out. Neatly. Without a bigger mess.(1920.DOL.Women’s Bureau.NARA/US PD/

Life’s full of little ironies. 

Smoothing out the week’s wrinkles.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

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King Kong. 1933 movie

So much is simply “sound and fury signifying nothing.” (King Kong.1933/US







July 9, 2014 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Party’s over. Hoofin’ it.

No use arguing with a drunk – waste of time and breath.

Face down on the sidewalk, but no real danger. So leave it. Just walk away. Did it to themselves. Let them deal.

Once the sun heats up this time of year, there are always regrets.

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Who knows what’s down this road? ©

Well, a few regrets about all the little vinyl flags desperately trying to maintain some dignity along the sidewalk.

(They can’t help their country of origin, but their true colors ought to mean something.)

People walking by like they aren’t even there.

Late one night before July 4th, a local realtor, with great patriotism and clever marketing plan, planted a small US flag beside each house’s driveway in the neighborhood…..along with her glossy index card-sized realtor information attached.

While quite a pretty sight over the holiday, days and rain storms later the little Red White and Blues are drooping downwards:  touching ground or on the ground, fading, shredding, attracting dogs.

Look, some people can’t be bothered to pick up old wet community papers off their lawns.

Proper handling of little unwanted orphan flags? No chance.

Maybe some energetic mom will get a kid on a bike to pick them up so they can use new for yard decorations on another holiday. There are worst fates.

A couple of the former fluttering with pride flags are forlornly stuck in the recycle bins this morning. They look confuse.

How quickly people forget.

Confusion is normal with the summer’s heat.

Vintage film. 2 men.1937 "Affairs of Cappy Ricks". Screenshot/US

Quickly, the public must be warned! (1937.US

As anyone knows, humans and animal have much in common.

Example: people love chewing gum. Cows constantly are entertained by chewing cud.

Cows eat a lot with four stomachs to feed. Some humans seem think the same and become competitive eaters.

Young humans sometimes like to run wild and one Washington State Angus bovine decided it was time wander over for a wild time at Wal-Mart.

Did one of the herd double dare?

Vintage western couple.1916. "Coyote o' The Rio Grande". OVerland Monthly./

Do you think they’ll come here next? Should we offer them a salt lick as a token of peace? (

It sounded like a good idea to the cow at the time. Just like an impulsive kid.

Like a young hooligan, the cow didn’t heed law enforcement’s orders. Got all huffy and hoofy.

Having snorted some, the runaway, took a swing at the cop. (Hospital said he wasn’t injured)

Jumped on the police car and, then, made a break for it.

Police, having convinced the owner that this was a dangerous rogue cow gone over to the dark side, hunted it down.

Guess them cops showed them cows. No nonsense tolerated there!

Certainly showed people a thing or two about local law enforcement. (Perhaps a research trip to a ranch for some training is in order?)

Vintage western cowboys. 1956 ABC TV/Warner Brothers."Cheyenne"(US cr pub.still/

Back off cow. Wal-Mart ain’t set up for your kind except in the freezer or shoe department. (1956 ABC TV/Warner Brothers/US

Blank. Totally blank stares.

A cow sloppily drooling cud pretty much sums it up. (Or is that a deceptive ruse?)

The Mount Vernon police force might want to be cautious about responding to any low rumbling requests for assistance along dark rural roads.

Beefy ones are always a bit more aggressive. (Gym trainers always say it’s the hormones)

Among cows, like people, there are always extremists. The peaceful ones can be overlooked.

cattle herd. Wyoming Land Trust. Cowboys/

Hey, let’s mosey over and make sure they’re feelin’ all fat, happy, and cooperative. (Wyoming Land Trust/

Hopefully you won’t forget this Friday’s celebration of the mild, not wild ones.

Cow Appreciation Day is July 11, 2014.

Watch the video here to learn more!

Happily sharing is so much better than angry confrontations.

Galloping on without regret.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

vintage cowboy outfit. Will Rogers. USPD/

This outfit won’t git ya’ any free food. Maybe a few laughs. (Will Rogers. USPD/




July 7, 2014 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Not Fishing for Compliments.

The old man was a real possibility. Fishing happily. Alone.

It was easier if they were alone. Those were the ones always willing to chat – and then quick to offer to share without being asked.

boy in doorway.Chaplin's "The Kid" 1921 vintage film/

Taking it all in. Takes skill to know when the timing is right. (

Sheldon shuffled nervously. He’d been there a while.

Waiting. Quietly hoping.

Never good to appear too eager. Scared folks.

Best to stand around on the fringe of the activity.

He hoped they thought he was with some family, but had simply wandered off.

He just looked sad if they asked.

Pitiful. Lost.


VIntage film.1921."The Kid"/Coogan/US

Please, mister. Can’t even spare a minnow? (US.PD/

Important to keep that family image so he could walk away later and they would leave him alone.

That’s the way he wanted it.

He was resourceful. Able to make it on his own.

He didn’t want or need a keeper.

Overlooked. Hiding in plain sight. His choice.

So this old man fiddling with that small fish he caught?  Please don’t toss it back.

It was big enough. Sheldon would gladly take it.

Time to amble up with a smile and ask for a donation.

He rushed forward as the old man raised his arm with the just-right-size-for-lunch fish taking aim at the lake.

Oh, hurry. Must get old guy’s attention before too late.

Grab his hand? Yes! Oh, a bit too roughly.

“Wait, Mister. Uh, thanks for the fish.

I didn’t mean to scare you. Just a scratch, right?

You planning to stick around and maybe catch some more? Mind if I watch – maybe offer advice or something?

Don’t rush off. You might trip. Oh, I was afraid of that. You OK?

Old man and boy in vintage film. 1921."My Boy". Pretty Clever Films/ US PD:pub. date/

Oh, they’ll be back to pick me up. Don’t worry. But say, you got any fried chicken? I love chicken. (

Wait, lady, it was an accident. I didn’t shove him.

His back pocket must have snagged on my tooth when we bumped into each other. Just playin’.

That’s probably nuthin’ but fish blood.

He’s been catching fish, you know.

Wait. No need for all that yelling and frantic scrambling.

Seriously? I’m standing here grinning.

Like I couldn’t jump up on that picnic table, too, ifn I wanted to.

Snooty people. Won’t stay where I’m not wanted.”

vintage film.Child with woman.1922"Trouble".First National films.Coogan/

You got pretty eyes, lady. What’s in that cooler of yours? Any chicken? Chicken’s tasty. Not grilled yet? No problem. Cooler would be lighter for a pretty lady like you to carry back to the car if it was empty…(1922/

With a slight shoulder shrug and dismissive flip of his tail, Sheldon slipped back to his favorite spot. Ready for a nap and a little peace.

He did hope all that screaming would calm down shortly.

If they kept yellin’, it would bring the park rangers’ scowls, ropes, and worrisome comments about how he’d gotten too big for his scales.

Last time they said disruptive juveniles wouldn’t be tolerated.

Well, he might only be eight foot long, but just wait and see how things snapped if those state park guys did show up.

Besides what was all the ruckus about? Not like he was unique. There were others, too.

Lots of talk about how the younger generation wasn’t moving out on their own these days. Opting for comfortable surroundings instead.

Sheldon felt right trendy….although talk of shoes and belts continued to give him nightmares.

Gator goin' (Image: TX PArks and Wildlife Dept.)

Gator best be goin’ (Image: TX Parks and Wildlife Dept.)

Hot time in the old park tonight.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

Read more?

Don't be chicken. Come visit Sheldon Lake Park. We promise you don't have to croak. Don't be chicken and don't bring chicken either. (Image: Tx Parks and Wildlife Dept.)

Come visit Sheldon Lake Park. Promise you don’t have to croak. Don’t be chicken. Chicken not a smart lifestyle choice around here. (Image: Tx Parks and Wildlife Dept.)




July 6, 2014 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Spoiling it all.

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A spark of brilliance. (We could use a few) ©

The smoke couldn’t have even cleared. The firecracker wrappers like confetti on the ground drenched in cheers as well as fresh-faced dew.

Giddy travelers still in route. Unaware.

Maybe the Pope suspected – or had advanced warning.

Tried to intervene. Citing a quality of life thing.

“…’At one point, the pope, speaking off the cuff, encouraged parents to spend more time with children. He quipped: “Waste time with your children!” He said he liked to ask parents, “do you play with your children?'” (from here)

Bless him. He tried. We should have seen it coming. Past experiences and all.

Should have avoided that Sunday paper like a snake.

OUCH! Back to school ads! 

Yep. Fresh out of some fevered brain

Yep. Fresh out of some fevered brain. Nothing says “Welcome back to school” like a mop.

It’s summer. 4th of July. Sun soaked days, flip flops,  relaxing far far away from offices and any sort of drudgery.

So whyyyyyyyy?

Why the rush?

We all know what’s on the horizon:

Crammed parking lots with irrational drivers. Long concrete hikes. Whining. Everyone whining.

Searching for the perfect shoes, the trendy clothes that  will be far too hot to wear for a long time. Practicing negotiation skills.(What? Pay this for that?)

Finding that spiral notebook of mandated color and size. Paper cuts.

Well, they tried to stay with the American spirit :Teamwork is highly prized, right? USA! USA! USA! Buy today!

Well, they tried to stay with the American spirit :Teamwork is highly prized, right? USA! USA! USA! Buy today! Buy today!

Encouraging everyone to get into the back to school spirit. Can’t wait.

Get the jump on the season!

Remember the early shopper get the bargain chore done quickly while stock is high!

Granny would frown and say, “Wishin’ your life away, fool. Once this day is gone, it’s gone – and how well did you spend it?”

Need to be cautious about wasting long summer days.

This is the time to pile up memories to smile at for years to come.

Time to hang out with those you want to be around.

The time to nourish dreams and grand plans.

Time to be who you really are.

Important stuff.

At least there's some effort to be sensitive.

At least there’s some effort to be sensitive. No one like messy messages. Political correctness is so important all any age. (And teachers know best…just ignore the odd ones in mug shots. Perhaps they should use the term “educators” instead? There’s a difference. Big one.)

Hadn’t planned to post, but you know how sharing the pain is supposed to lessen it?

(Or is that an excuse to be downright annoying?)

Don’t buy it! Hang on to summer with every fiber of your being. It slips away far too quickly.

Need to snap to that.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

all rights reserved. no rights given. Copyrighted

Don’t kill it off now! Let summer blaze on! Be steadfast and brave. ©


July 3, 2014 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Mom said worth the wait.

No matter where you’re docked

May there be smooth sailing during travel

And safe harbor once arrived.

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Cornered? Or reserving a seat? ©

July 4th.

More than just a day for shopping or grillin’.

It wasn’t easy. There was great loss and cost.

Real hardships.

More difficult than this century’s weak cell phone signals, finding parking spot at the mall, high food prices, and beach holidays rained out. 

The flag, then, more than just a decorative accent.

Stripes the color of the blood spilled by those of conviction, those of will,

Those willing to sacrifice for the ones that would follow.

Born: a country of laws.

It only works when all agree to follow the laws.

Then all are free to speak, negotiate in good faith, compromise, agree to disagree (but still be friends who respect one another), and mind their own business (without others telling them how).

Free to build both bridges and fences so society continues in running order.

Born: freedom for each to embrace their own history and heritage  – or to discard it. Reinvent themselves if so wished.

Born: a country that gives to those in need and rushes in to help when disaster strikes.

Born: a country always working to build a more perfect place.

Fireworks July 4th. Sparks of conviction, will, and great sacrifice.

Celebration of struggle.

Beacon to others offering possibilities.

It wasn’t easy. There was great loss and cost.

Nothing worth having is easy.

So stop complaining about the traffic and keep to the road. The only way to get there.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

no permission granted. all rights reserved. Copyrighted

Takes courage to plunge into unknown waters ©
















July 1, 2014 / philosophermouseofthehedge

On the way. Systems go.

Now where do you suppose is this one going?

Air beneath the wings and all that.


no permissions granted. all rights reserved. Copyrighted

Earth to flyer, you are cleared to soar.©

Wise to select the best qualified for the job.

Possibly one of the trained turtle monitors hired by Galveston to cautiously move in front of the seaweed scooping/beach cleaning equipment looking for turtles .

This is the time of year endangered turtles are trying to get to the sand dunes to lay eggs.

Some of the Green sea turtles and Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles hitched rides on the seaweed floats.

Now on the beach, turtles are having trouble getting free.

Iffy situation: in some places seaweed piles are almost shoulder-high on a small child.

If the turtles decide hide a nest in the seaweed piles, the eggs can easily be crushed.

If it’s too difficult to get to the sandy dunes, the turtle give up and dump their eggs in the surf.

So they’ve hired turtle escorts to assist. Volunteers, too.

This skilled flyer probably works cheap: free to swoop down and snatch any little crabs, shrimp, or tidbits tangled in the mess.

Now drones might be able to do the same thing – without lunch breaks.

But bound to be people yelling “Quit taking pictures of my girl friend’s bikini!” (Is it odd how some people think they are so wonderful that everyone wants to look at them?)

Some may think the drones are government snoopers. (Are those drone operators so bored they need some pretty girls to look at? Or some people to ridicule? Nah, that never happens. Snort.)

Then there’s always the worriers: “Inmigración! Niños”. (Like anyone cares anymore.)

Some Veterans might be annoyed with drones though. All that money on those spent while they sit waiting. (But sun and beach are healing and fight depression, so good job!)

no permissions given. all rights reserved. copyrighted

It’s a plain plane. It’s the neighbor’s drone. Nah, It’s a grateful seagull. ©

Who knows what the flighty one is after. Different perspective up high.

Maybe a handout from the dock dwellers. (Gotta get stuff while you can. When it’s gone it’s gone. No problemo. Simply fly off to next promising spot.)

Or attempting to stay away from the maddening holiday crowd.

Everything considered, the seagulls perhaps are pitching in to show their appreciation.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission and the John McGovern Foundation have awarded funds for developing the 640 acre East End Lagoon Nature Park and Preserve.

Big Reef Nature Park, a barrier island park, has coastal wetlands, prairie, and beach habitats. Quiet. Peaceful. Beautiful. Now safe.

Trails, an observation deck, benches, nature signs, and parking will keep humans in their place.

Birds. Flighty, you know, but they sure can soar.

Happy they are being given a chance.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

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Up. Up and away! With a little help from friends.©




June 26, 2014 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Twins. Separated. (He’s the goofy one)

People are just a joke. Don’t even realize it. Arrogance or blessed ignorance? Unsure.

The species seems to feel they have a monopoly on behavior patterns, foibles, and embarrassments.

Little acknowledgement to the fact that plants could be our twins. Separated by circumstance.

They stand, you know. Stand. breathe. Feel pain, Grow towards things that nurture. Wither from neglect. Grow wild if allowed. Able to flourish and overcome harsh environments or severe difficulties.

Yep. Had to be separated at birth.

You know how little kids play hide and seek behind curtains or furniture not realizing they aren’t hidden at all.

Dwarfed in grownup surroundings.

That little butt or arm is sticking out in clear view? Just like this one:

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Silly little thing. Typical two-year old. We see you! ©

Humans, especially males, think they are the only ones that wake up after a long night and discover they are oddly wearing a hula skirt or a Hawaiian leis and have no idea where the darn thing came from?

Well, how awkward for this normally fine upstanding member of the forest.

no permissions given. all rights reserved. copyright

Get it off. Where’s the clasp? When I get hold of the squirrels that did this, watch out! ©

And women. Them, too. Always plucking stray hairs from eye brows. Odd hairs seem to sprout for no reason at all in the oddest place – out of moles, on the chin, on the leg. No explanation at all. Maddening.

An annoyance that trees share.

It gets worse.

The windows are peeping over and see the cosmetic flaw. Totally embarrassing.

Soon the whole gossipy neighborhood will know. You know they are such a pane and can’t keep it shut.

No permissions given. ALl rights reserved. Copyrighted

Oh, dear. Where did that come from? If I stand this way maybe no one will see. Acting like nothing is wrong. ©

Of course in every crowd, human or plant, there’s those who are always sprouting the current trendy look. First to try and stand out in the newest blooming color. Elegantly nodding to the admiration – envy – of all the others.

Sadly there’s always one that attempts “the look” and falls flat trying to pull it off. Some just fade away. Sigh.

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Beauty pageants are so brutal. Not for the weak.©

People, with their rootless movement, seem determined not to recognize their relatives. Just walk on by, nose in the air. Ignoring common garden origins.

It’s OK. Plants, they know who the goofy one is.

Luckily they are kindly keeping silent about it.

Branching out,

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

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Lined up on the bleachers watching the show. (People are quite entertaining.) ©





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