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November 16, 2018 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Note the box

Yes, yes, the box remains – in a chair in clear sight of the counter. As a lesson to the new arrival. We shall get to that.

Make yourself useful since you are here: chop that canned tuna a bit to stew chunks and add a drip or two of warm water – No, Dunderhead, We said stew not mush in broth. Now you’ll have to add more tuna. There. At least adequate if not epicurean. In reward, you may remain in Our presence and watch Us dine as they did with Marie Antoinette.

Sad what happened to her, you sigh?  She hung around too long – cut it too close. A smarter monarch would have shipped herself out with the jewels. Or been wise enough to make more cakes. Always remember: good manners and commonsense means if you bring something, bring enough for all.

No, you may not snack on the leftover tuna in the can. The nerve to ask.

Boxed about the ears. What? No We are not suggesting punishment. It’s obvious there is a box at the table – and before you are foolish to ask, it is not  boxed seats like at the Opera. That cardboard monolith with the green lettering. It is there as a warning: We have the box AND the receipt.

And as you see, the old coffee machine still remains – also in plain sight….as if Staff would allow more unexpected, disruptive leaks – Worse than DC…How disgusting.

Both The Molly and Ourselves were quite offended that Staff would even consider that puddle of water beside the cabinet had any connection to either of Us….obviously, The Molly’s unfortunately food bolts are deposited at the back door and for Ourself, when attention is required or We wish special pity foods, We leave liquid notification in either the bathroom or bedroom doorway for immediate results…

Ah, so nice of you to stop by to provide an audience as We dine for a visit.

Cat on fleece blanket in window. (© image. All rights reserved, copyrighted, no permissions granted

Ah, yes. A heated blanket and sunny window. All right with the world…but We shall keep and eye on the new machine until it has warmed life in the Realm. (© image)

Staff? Oh, as it is sunny and a birthday, We have been forced to let her wander off unattended and without a supply list insisted she-who-feeds journey to Gulfside for fun, sun, and seafood.

Everyone likes seafood and We slipped a note in requesting all left overs be boxed and returned….so we sample out of concerns – to make sure the fare was appropriate… Additionally, as Ruler of the Realm, We take care to take care of Staff: natural light is well acknowledge for health and for maintaining good eyesight….Staff must be able to see the puddles and have sharp vision to interpret the puddles accurately.

While Staff is on approved R&R, We shall keep an eye on the new replacement coffee machine – making it aware that if performance is not perfect, We have the box.

Ah, you are yawning.

It is tedious work to sit and stare without end. We understand your short attention span frail nature.

Out of gratitude you may leave your tribute can of tuna or salmon by the door.

On your way out.

We graciously acknowledge your tears of happiness.

You are thrilled. We can see that.

Now carry on. Our paw has waved!

Audience fini


crown symbol with message "I am RC Cat and I approve this message"

I am RC Cat and I approve this message.



November 13, 2018 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Yes, it does too count.

Woman on sleigh with child sledding in snow. Snow Queen fairy tale, 1946 illiustration by Kolvu. (USPDpubdate, artist life/

Hang on kid, we’re just getting started.(Snow Queen fairy tale/1946.USPD/

Houston, we have snow – all the way to Galveston’s coast. You could see it on the UTMB Galveston web cams.

Some areas north of here had sleet last night, but just as I decided to brave the winds in the backyard to cover 3 tropical plants that have hardly recovered from last winter, rain, sleet, then snow.

“Trace of snow shatters 40 year record”

“New record for early snow in Houston”

“Snow flurries spotted across SE Texas” (You can see the panhandle/Amarillo got much more)

The local huskies, malamutes, and Great Pyrenees are cavorting with glee – demonstrating to their owners that THIS is how life should be…not always sunglasses, flip-flops, and cooling margaritas.

Knew that big flock of ducks overhead late yesterday were up to something.

Never fear. Temps should be back in the 70F’s this weekend. The landscape is going to just give up and throw up their limbs in confusion.

Well the cool is calling the dog…again. The call of the wild

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge



November 13, 2018 / philosophermouseofthehedge

What’s driving things

Jester pouring a drink. Court Jester by WM Chase, 1875 (USPD.artist life,

“Tis the season to be folly. Fa-la-la-la-la, the absurdity.” No joke. (USPD/

Opposite World shifting gears. Recalculating.

Now that people are used to sport season crossovers with NFL football fielding play at the same time as NBA basketball courts us, Mother Nature is stepping into that dueling trend.

As meteorologists are watching a massive cold front arriving from the north with snow and sleet, potential tropical storm Patty is considering her options in the Caribbean.

Baseball season may be over, but Hurricane Season isn’t quite yet.

Texas and the Gulf Coast, knowing disasters, didn’t need the flames from the California fires to send up SOS smoke signals.

Moving out today are more than 50 fire engines from 47 fire departments across 23 counties in Texas, as well as teams from the Texas Forest Service at Texas A&M. “Who are the Texas firefighters headed to CA? Check the list.” 

Interesting to me is how many small cities/firefighting department immediately answered the call – if you look at the list, you may not even recognize some of the names. Some departments only have 2 engines yet are sending one and men. Noticeable absent is one very large city – but maybe that’s due to multiple of Houston’s trucks being taken out of service/damaged by Hurricane Harvey.

Traveling in a hurry is always potentially hazardous. Things can trip you up…and that’s why Jeep is recalling multiple cars including the SRT and Trackhawk for dangerous floor mats.

Yep, dangerous rugs. An example of an accessory taking over an outfit? OK It’s really not a joke. The beneficial, keep-your-car-clean mat under the steering wheel can take an unexpected wrinkle and keep the car speeding on even if the driver’s foot isn’t on the gas pedal. Not the kind of self driving car experience most people want. Suggested fix in article here (but you can probably guess it…)

Screenshot. Jeep grand Cherokee SRT8. YouTube 7 things I hate about my Jeep SRT8/Josh Share)

Did they spell that word wrong? (screenshot/Josh Share)

Wanting things to come to a stop once in a while is normal, but it should be an expected – a planned – stop, right? Tell that to some “I-doing-this-for-your-own-good” cars.

Since 2012 Automatic Braking Systems and Forward Collision Avoidance systems have been auditioning for Dr Jekyll/Mr Hyde. Hondas have gone into protective mode stopping when driving alongside a metal fence or guard rail. A couple of Infiniti SUVs apparently are spreading the word “Stop”” at a particular grate on the New Jersey bridge mistaking it for a barrier. (source).

Ford 150 pickup trucks apparently are balking at passing semi-tractor trailer trucks on the interstate. Just not gonna do it. Hard braking. Luckily for that driver no one was tailgating him. (Ford problems, 2017).

Jeep Cherokee in Illinois, and Jeep SRT8 (CO) are having bossy attitudes. The SRT8 performance vehicle has a button to turn off the Forward Emergency Braking..and maybe there’s a reason for that if you want to go around a slow car on the highway and accelerate, the automatic sensors may decided you are too close to the other car and slam on your brakes…”…hard enough to scare people with you.”. (see 4:20 of the Video)

Companies’ marketing divisions know people’s fascination with technology drives interest. Gotta steer efforts towards that. Ready or not.

Girl. Vintage post card. Reutlinger (USPD,, artist life/

Dreamy. Life is how Facebook posts it.(USPD/

But it’s getting a bit silly.What are we selling here?

A local furniture store’s newest ad features not really their lovely furniture, but a lovely girl taking multiple selfies – hat on, hat off, chin up, face sideways and pouty  – actually looking quite oblivious to the showcase bed she’s posed on. Guess the message is “Buy furniture! It’ll look impressive on your FB page or Twitter feed!” Now that’s real motivation.

Possibly cleverly limiting buyer’s remorse and return. Once it’s social media posted, it’s signed, sealed, delivered, and yours for real, right?

California Highway postcard. TIchnor Bros. 1930-1945/Boston pub.lib.(, artist life/

Paradise lost. It should look like this vintage California highway postcard.(USPD/

It’s always something in this in Theatre of the Absurd: Fire breaks, auto brakes, reality breaks.

Hoping Stanley the Giraffe, the llamas at the life guard stand, and the bunnies up against the wall find safe haven. When everything is gone, a pet found is worth everything to a disaster victim.

(If you donate to the Red Cross, please be sure to specify exactly where you want the money is to go…or they can legally spend it on redecorating offices or furniture like they got caught doing after Hurricane Katrina…and there’s a bit of investigation going on about the money collected for Hurricane Harvey relief…)

Thanks for all the First Responders, Firefighters, and those opening their homes to shelter those in need.

Always hard when Mother Nature decides to redecorate.

The challenges of Opposite World. Where’s the brakes?

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.



November 9, 2018 / philosophermouseofthehedge


Design. Shades of grey horizontal ©(Image: all rights reserved. Copyrighted, no permissions granted

Awareness shuttered. (Image.©)

Ancient and primal: greeting the dawn with hope – or very likely a “Whew” we survived another dark period and that big light showed up again.

Some now prefer to stay dry and cozy inside (without risking running not for your health, but to save your cell phone from those who would snatch it), start the day focusing of mental energies/accessing the mystic force with yoga’s Surya Namaskara (sun salutation).

Others, the foolish ones who choose to believe a big dog is a benefit nature nuts advocates and the outdoor runners firmly serious that daily pounding doesn’t hurt joints athletic enthusiasts have no problem throwing themselves into wrinkled clothes at daybreak because exercise gets the blood and oxygen moving. Starts the day right.

Daybreak: a celebrated new beginning.

Diwali celebration card./ District Kota, Rajasthan

Diwali card from a client from District Kota, Rajasthan. Thought you might enjoy it. Several houses here decorated their homes and yards for The Festival of Lights with strings of white lights. A bit of shared brightness in the darkness.

They may be missing it.

The Between sets the stage.

The time between as the dark seeps like molasses back to its’ lair as the sun slips into the wings waiting for the light cue.

I like The Between to walk the dog.

Before the car door slams and noise canceling buzz of traffic

Before the chirping of elementary kids gathering on corners waiting for lumbering yellow busses

Once bright, awareness seems to fade: by habit or community dictate. People are so much like bees: rushing, darting on assignment, narrowly focused – not seeing what’s around them, strictly dedicated, and governed by one. So much missed – or shut down for efficiency.

In The Between the world is on hold – hushed, stretching, a bit. Quietly mulling over the day’s checklist before the light show begins.

Cats satisfied after nocturnal adventures, sprawl across fences – watching, maybe willing to expend some remaining effort if a small creatures is foolish enough to get close.

Mostly silent. Often foggy.

A hawk surveying from a chimney. But still.

The Between is like a thin veil between light and dark.

A time to gather thoughts: to consider, to evaluate, to reach to towards “What would Dad or some mentor now gone do about this?”

To read energies of those that matter, and if uneasy is sensed, to toss a bit of encouraging energy that direction.

The Between is open. Your choice to pay attention or not.

Ah, there goes the first flight out of Hobby airport. Always on fine line schedule. (© Image): all rights reserved copyrighted. no permissions granted)

Ah, there goes the first flight out of Hobby airport. Always on fine line schedule. (© Image)

There’s a lot of pain in society right now.

Depression, exhaustion, violence and anger are epidemic.

Some act out with irrational destruction. They step away from being human. If you think all these murderers are not in pain and looking at a way to end it all, well, just keep thinking that taking away all the toys will solve the problem (and show you haven’t had much effective experience with the young, the distraught, or the mentally ill.)

Some get into such a dark place that all they can think to do is remove themselves – to stop the pain and often to protect those they care about – that they end their lives. Suicide claims more lives than murder, war, natural disasters combined. (See the harsh facts here)

Blogger Big Blue Mess is asking for a little audience participation on Saturday, Nov. 10th

Take a minute and read about her journey with the aftermath of suicide by a loved one.

She  speaks of the Out of Darkness Walk, an event to help the survivors of suicide loss, the ones at risk, and society as a whole.

As a fundraiser for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, donations are appreciated, but not all that’s requested.

Concerned interest, shared strength, and commitment to shove society to a more positive direction is.

Know those touched by murder or suicide? (Please don’t join the shuffling, huddle ones who “never know what to say, so I just don’t”)  “Ten practical ways to help your friend through the death of a loved one”

Molly Malamute carrying home a stick she picked up. (© Image: all rights reserved, copyrighted, NO permissions granted)

Molly Malamute demonstrating pick up sticks. Her small contribution to cleaning up the neighborhood after strong storms…and between us, we think she was relieved the subdivision yard guys finally pitched in to assist.(© Image)

Between us, a small request: sometime Saturday send out a positive, warm, healing thought. The universe will direct it to where it needs to go.

Do not underestimate that power. What are thoughts if not electricity zapping across parts of our brains?

Science says energy is never created or destroyed – it changes, regroups and flows on.

Be positive with that.

The sun, the moon and what’s between them. It’s human to reach out to any hovering between light and dark.

What’s between us all

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Bushes reaching for the sun at daybreak (© Image: copyrighted, no permanent granted. all rights reserved)

Bushes demonstrating Sun Salutation.(© Image)





November 7, 2018 / philosophermouseofthehedge

A number of concern

Couple in vintage office. 1944 Paramount Pic./Life MAg. (, pub. still/

“OK, let’s hear the explanation.(USPD/

1337. Baffling. Worrisome.

What’s the significance, WordPress?

Why announce here instead of 1,500 or 2,000, more predictable points?


A year, perhaps. An important one?

But none of that seems relevant.

A number without context. Always adds up to mystery.

Squirrel in ddress with china dog (1944. Time, inc. Leen/Life mag/USPD., artist life/

It’s difficult to address squirrelly things.(USPD/

Since the message, “You have reached 1337“, came from WordPress, could it be Leet, semi-secret code? 

“The word “leet” is also an adjective used to describe formidable prowess or accomplishment, especially in the fields of online gaming and in its original usage for computer hacking.”

Orthography for those who have a clue….so probably not the intended for me.

Numerology anyone? That offers up some interesting angles. All odd.

Couple in vintage sedan car. 1944. Paramount Pict/Time, inc/Life MAg. (,

“Look, you put me behind the wheel, but you’re supposed to know the direction we’re going.” (USPD/

Wondering about the mystic origin of this shadowy number phantom – Not even a blog anniversary.

1337: an accolade, a complaint, a warning?

The obscure message: “You’ve made 1337 posts.

Do the Happiness Engineers know of the anguish over Gutenberg – this a little, encouraging nudge of “you’ve come this far, don’t stop now”?

Somehow I know how cows must feel being herded without choice into the chute ramp towards the great unknown.

Well, thanks, WordPress, I guess.

Interesting to know blog posts, like data, are numbered by you.

But 1337? Still curious.

What counts, counts.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

Vintage couple. 1945, Lauren Bacall on piano as VP Harry S. Truman plays (Time, inc.Charles Cort/Life Mag. (USPD, artist life/

For a good measure, all that matters is adding the right notes to a good melody and keeping up with the beats.(1945.Lauren Bacall draped as VP Harry S. Truman tunes up.(USPD/

November 5, 2018 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Vegetables canned. Duck.

Waitress serving breakfast at counter. 1930's/ TIchnor Bros./

Canned smiles not on the menu…although it would be nice if more grins were offered these days. (USPD/

The canning of the veggies imminent and in vogue. The season has passed for them and once again willing them away averted and redirected that stock.

Spotted the young, new, school teacher down the block picking up a lingering pumpkin in her flowerbed.

Undeterred by the squeaked and squawked protests from small local critters who had either taken up residence inside it or saw it as proof this is not a food desert for them.

Keeping the dripping ooze and mush at arm’s reach, she dropped it unceremoniously into her trash can on the curb…to hear it thud to the bottom. The garbage men had already been by earlier. Head down, she tugged the wobbling wheeled container back to the garage. Better late to the fight than never, they say.

Our cat, RC of the Realm, insist a high alert for lingering vegetable invaders must be continued. She’s spotted recent sneaky attempts to infiltrate and contaminate, so she says.

We’ve tried to explain those a bits of carrots in her food – an expensive canned food, that’s good for her. She barfed at the idea.

“It’s like invasion of body snatchers,” she retorts. “Once inside, the orange submarines head for the brain and attempt a take over.”

She rejected Molly’s offer of being a food taster. Dogs do not “taste”. No self-control. Besides, dogs will eat anything – as demonstrated last week with the slimy ham.  “With super model behavior, We shall protect the Realm by dislodging the mini-veggies’ journey. You may thank Us later. We are off to an obscure hard to reach spot for privacy. We shall call when time for clean on aisle 3.”

I’ve given up. No miniature vegetable submarines carrots in food. Ever.

New bits and pieces are coming up once again about that odd object overhead. (And it’s way over our heads): Oumuamua.

No longer though to be a comet or a meteor because of its’ acceleration and directional capabilities, NASA says it is the first known interstellar object.

Some have suggested it could be an alien spacecraft lost because of following Google’s trip routes or in a holding pattern by Universal Traffic Control. If that’s the case, maybe we should turn out all the lights and duck until it leaves.

Creative thinkers/engineers/astrophysicists have thought it might be space junk, part of an alien space craft that was torn off, maybe an actual solar lightsail of artificial origin (Cornell University). Realistically, no way it’s sailing. Where’s the bevy of bathing beauties on the bow?

Vegetable character, Potato, leaving the farm. (postcard, 1916, Northern Pacific RR/, artist life/

What if Mr Potato head was real and he simply got over heated and lost in space all these years? (postcard, 1916/USPD/

The cat, catching a glance at Oumuamua’s picture, insisted she didn’t drop that. Astutely, she brought up something to think about:

The object mysteriously appeared to rock our world early in October and the disappeared about the same time the vegetable invaders vanished…

Eerie coincidence. It is a coincidence, right?

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Machines. 1930-1945. Crane Service/TIchnor Bro. collection/Boston Pub.Lib/USPD.

Wall? We may need a protective camouflage dome first.(USPD/


November 2, 2018 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Don’t eat the ham

Woman cooking in kitchen. Wirthmann Julianna/(USPD.

Hmmm. Here’s a good way to make anyone turn green: start with Screen of Death and ham…. (USPD/

Sandwiched between the Genius Bar and the ham, a lost day.

Crash. Not what want to see upon opening the computer…much less “crash” in all 537 files listed on that

Despite the fact that computer was unplugged during the traditional violent coming-to-blows-cold front vs the warm Gulf moisture on Halloween night, computer smirked and took the day off. (What was this? Empathy or solidarity with electric grid dependent appliances? Just put in a R&R request like everyone else – We’re flexible, computer)

Suspiciously the MIA routine was right after and update. (Nothing like wanting to make a grand entrance…) Glitch happened after the last one, too. (Leading the Apple guy to say, “Next time, maybe just come in preemptively and update here. HAHA.” Well, by then it was funny.)

Apparently, updates are touchy about wavering WiFi signals and where I like to work may be a bit too far from our WiFi’s origin…or there’s an obstruction like a wall…one with any sort of wires or water pipes in it….(uh, what else are interior walls mainly supposed to do beside hide ugly hazardous stuff – as well as hold up ceilings…having redone multiple houses, the holding up ceiling thingy is critical to know)

Anxiety and boredom while watching the white line indicating the update’s progress (There are 3 critical spots during that bar. If you don’t get past those spots, there’s a fatal roadblock and rescue is beyond possible bile without a total search and destroy wipe. Whew!)

So can’t complain, the Apple Guy was interesting: used to work at Apple Corporate, but likes troubleshooting better – gets to do mystery solving and interact with lots of people. He’s really good with customer service. While congenial, he had a shadow of fragile – just a small bit of uneasy energy and spotted one of those suicide survivor tats. It wasn’t hidden or anything, but not really something you bring up in conversation in a professional setting. He seems ok now – and you hope that holds. Life is way too much stressful these days.

So with computer finally feeling really wanted and treasured ( and much too powerful…) – Now supporting a wonderful updated OS system with new features…Cool!

Except for the ham.

I told them “Don’t eat the ham.”

Anytime you discover stuff that has been long buried – and has a well past date on it, just don’t.

But Sr. Staff defiantly did. And worse, fed it to Molly Malamute.

You can guess. 

We attributed her lack of energy and not wanting anyone to sit next to her to being hot or tired. She reluctantly hauled herself up and went to last walk of the night – shorter than usual when she turned around immediately after finding an acceptable spot to squat. Went straight to bed.

She started throwing up about midnight. Not only feeling physically terrible, she appeared in emotional distress after upchucking on her bed. I rushed to reassure her, it wasn’t big deal and she wasn’t going to be discarded because she was sick.

The cat scrambled out of the room to the safety of her inner chamber loft. Some friend. (Grumbling as she exited that her unwanted, discarded food never smelled like that. “No self-respecting cat…”)

Spent a while following with miserable pup around with paper towels, plastic bag, and wet rags for her mouth. Pulling off pet bed covers to pile in the laundry and gathering up multiple throw rugs. Molly seems to think those are throw-up rugs. Maybe she’s seen me cleaning the wood floor so much for muddy paw prints, she thought she was doing me a favor by aiming for the rugs…

 Finally, the exhausted dog looked ready to attempt sleep…but not in her regular armchair spot – like she wasn’t going to risk getting is smelly and wet. I put a clean blanket on her bed and she curled gratefully on it.

Much later she I did hear her lurch up go out of the room and hack up more, but she immediately came back and went to sleep, so I decided to just leave it until morning.

1920 woman by wall paper. (USPD. pub date, LoC/

Sometimes you just want to disappear into the wallpaper.(USPD/

Much to the cat’s annoyance.

Morning was much better. Got some water down. Trip outside – all to the irritated chorus of cat instructions. I thought she just wanted food, another kind of food, a new mouse, a little brushing. But the yowling did not cease.

Finally, I said to her “OK Timmy’s in the well. Show me where.” And the cat smugly led me down the hall, pausing to firmly point paw to a little spot here, a little spot there, a larger puddle here…I swear the cat enjoys being a tattletale about dog misbehavior/misfortune.

Mainly she was livid that there was a large lumpy hammy puddle in the room where she sits in the window to observe morning activity of the Outer Realm. She fluffed herself up huge and demanded to know how she could be expected to go in there with that smell.

We have lots of cleaner and paper towels. All better.

Luckily the garbage comes tomorrow.

So the moral of this story: Crash doesn’t mean cash required, cats are so superior they feel no shame in smug delight when pointing out others’ failures, and don’t eat the ham.

Onward through the fog

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge


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