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August 5, 2022 / philosophermouseofthehedge

One cute puppy. (Mars version)

Man aiming gun at robot defended by dog. Art by Robert Fuqua, 1939 pulp fiction maagaazine. (USPD, CR not renewed,, artist life/

“I’m telling you don’t even think about attacking that pillow” Yes, I do need a nap, but couch pillow defense system is not quite ready yet. (Robert Fuqua cover art, 1939 pulp fiction magazine. USPD/

You can expect only a bit of robotic rumblings around here right now. A flighty bit – spacey. Blame both NASA and Paw and Disorder Hank

Something of an improvement with the 6:15-6:30 a.m. light dependent wake-up call instead of a very consistent. want-ply-wanna-play, no-matter-what-the-sunrise 5:30 a.m. by The German. Diva Molly, not a morning dog, rarely rolled out of bed before 7:30.

At least with the last two, I didn’t have to worry about what they were getting into if I ignored the live action alarm clock. Hank, stilling new, is still exploring – house and limits. No liking’ the way he’s tossing glances at the faux fur pillow on the couch….yea, I see you casually tossing your toy closer and closer…

But as today is a day to celebrate (Called for cinnamon rolls with the breakfast fruit and oatmeal), so no slug-a-bed.

WALL-E photographed by Remux, Colombia/

One is the loneliest number. Both Curiosity and WALL-E know that well. (WALL-E photographed by Remux, Colombia/


Yep,  Happy Birthday, Curiosity Mars Rover.

Unlike previous years when few noticed and the rover had to sing to himself – just the most sad thing in the universe! – people worked to make sure Curiosity wasn’t alone in celebrating his life and accomplishments this time.

There’s something about Curiosity’s big “eyes” and vulnerability so far from home that makes people feel sympathy and protective.

If you haven’t seen it, here’s a smile.

Reminiscent of Wall-E and ET.

July, 2022

August, 2013:

“Having helped design the Mars rovers Spirit, Opportunity, and Curiosity, NASA engineer Kobie Boykins reveals what these robots are telling us about the existence of life on the red planet.” Click here for what he has to say (2015) about “The Curious Life of a Mars Rover”.

As sleep deprivation tends to make me a bit bleary, that’s about all I can get to fly outta here today.

Although during the just-barely-dawn dog walk, I did see an unexpected “V” flight pattern of birds lifting off by the lake.

A bit early for migrating ducks. Have the Purple Martins decided to beat the rush and start early?

The Audubon Society has already started organizing Purple Martin watch events as the birds dine locally here for a few weeks to fatten up before soaring across the Gulf and onward to their winter resorts.

“Historically there are two major roosts in Houston. We keep an eye on the radar for roost sizes and will select the watch event site based on where the birds are. Roost locations are either Stafford (12634 Fountain Lake Cir, Stafford, TX 77477) or Willowbrook area (17395 Tomball Pkwy, Houston, TX 77064)” (source)

Realistically, times and locations are flexible. The last time I witnessed a massive flock was at dusk over the HEB parking lot. Lots of glowing lights attracting bugs and there are still some undeveloped lands close within wing range.

Never know what might fly your way.

Oh. That. Sorry, lots of dog brushing means a good deal of fluff flying around. I know some spin it into yarn for canine aficionadoes, but no….

Hope you land a great weekend, 

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge



  1. SusanR / Aug 5 2022 11:57 am

    Keep your head down, or wear a hat, while watching those birds. Without checking a map, I’m guessing you’re located in the central flyway?
    As for the new pup, here’s hoping he settles in quickly and likes to sleep till 7:30 — or even later.

    Liked by 2 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Aug 15 2022 9:21 am

      This is right in the migratory path – one reason so many (including Audubon Society and serious bird researchers) are telling the “energy experts” do not want windmill farms right off the coast or in the Gulf. It’s not just the visible blight. More important it’s too many obstacles and flight disorienting lights at night already. Companies are supposed to stop or slow blades certain times of the year, but seems to be no one enforcing that – and beside, the birds / monarchs lift off and fly when they know it is time…not on a set by humans schedule. The Hank alarm is going off right at dawn – currently oK as that’s the only tolerable time for a long walk…and Hank really needs long walks to burn off all that happiness energy. HAHA. (And yes, hats are important – even after birds have stopped guarding the nests – for so many reasons.) Hope the temps have moderated there – fall festivals will be starting before you know it…which means more pleasant weather coming to the rescue. We all need to get outside. Thanks for flying in with a comment


  2. walkingoffthechessboard / Aug 5 2022 12:37 pm

    I always “root” for the Mars rovers. Sometimes, I will look at the moon and think about the amazing fact they’re even farther out from us…doing their thing. It also sounds like Hank may have a thing for the faux fur pillow. To be determined. Hank will also surely determine what time you’ll be getting up from now on. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. disperser / Aug 5 2022 2:34 pm

    . . . maybe it’s not lonely . . . maybe it’s really happy being the sole center of attention on Mars.

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Aug 15 2022 9:10 am

      You’ve got a point. Maybe the Rover is perfectly happy there without someone always tinkering with it – looking under the hood. Got to be annoying. Thanks for the astute observation.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. shoreacres / Aug 5 2022 3:25 pm

    I wonder if the birds you’re seeing are Black-bellied Whistling Ducks. I don’t usually see them around here, but every day this week a small flock (9-12 birds) have flown over Lakewood about 7:30-8:00 a.m. I wouldn’t have noticed them, but they’ve caught my attention by whistling while they fly: always south. They’re sometimes in a V and sometimes in a straight line. We’re at the northern limit of their range, and they aren’t really migratory, but some will fly to Mexico or Central America for the winter. I wonder if drought and drying ponds in the refuges and etc. have sent a few our way, just for the water.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Kate Crimmins / Aug 5 2022 3:27 pm

    Awww Hank is still exploring. Up early to make sure everything is ready for you. He doesn’t want to go back. He’s got a good gig now!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. cat9984 / Aug 6 2022 6:35 am

    There is something a little depressing about seeing the first geese flying south for the winter. It always happens in mid to late August when Michigan’s at it’s hottest.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ally Bean / Aug 12 2022 7:04 am

    A large flock of Canadian geese flew over my head this morning as I was sitting on the deck drinking my morning coffee. So noisy, but reassuring as well. Time flies, as they say.

    Liked by 1 person

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