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September 21, 2022 / philosophermouseofthehedge

The Dark calls

Cowboy. Man on horse. John Wayne.1933 Promo for the film Sagebrush. (USPD artist life,

Always a dark remark: “Don’t call us. We’ll call you. No, it’s not ghosting. It’s not you, it’s me.” (USPD/

Most don’t mind him. Simply a wanderer – for his own reasons.

You know, the strong, silent type. Mysterious, yet by all known, harmless.

Drifting: here for a bit, then gone who knows where. 

Thought he’d been briefly sighted a few blocks away last week under a full moon. Relief. But last night there was no doubt he had returned.

Hank was the first to know. Couldn’t stop staring in his direction.

We tugged the stubborn husky along – no need to stop and stare.

Loners sometimes take exception to that.

However, he seemed to have something to say.

That startled. He seemed to be right outside the kitchen window once we were inside.

A grudge to resolve?


Owl on branch with moon behind (1919 American Forestry Association/USPD pub. date, with no cr restrictions/

“You should be so lucky to be even considered as an Owl Buc-ees.” (1919 American Forestry Association/USPD/

Owls converse in such an eerie, haunting trill.

“OK,” I replied. “Nice to have you drop in, but please, this time, take your dinner leftovers with you.”

After much soapy water drenching the porch and flower bed, and after a few rain showers, the horrendous smell is finally gone from his last visit. 

We don’t mind the owl guy winging in. There’s all sorts of legends and myths attached to them. But we’re not Owls Inn or owl’s end. 

Hank just grinned “It’s the call of the wild. Can I go out and play? Be a seasonally appropriate Hoot and Howlathon. I hear those are big around these parts…”

Ah, the of creatures of the dark and the falling season.

Time to sort out things as days get shorter and things around you start signaling retreat or defeat.

Man /cowboy in black in dark room. (Gary Cooper 1959 film trailer for The Hanging Tree. (USPD., no cr, artist life/

“So, let’s have a little talk about impending doom. Are you ready for the end of lines?” (USPD/

Like my phone –  a victim of P.A.D.: Phone Age Discrimination. 

So it’s an ancient Apple 3 generation – but suitable twinsies with a 3G network, right? Lower numbers not the coming thing these days. 

Seems wrong, after so many years of competency and reliability that it is unplugged from the work force due to no fault of its’ own. Undeserved pink slip taken with a stiff upper emoji.

Now I have to struggle and relearn where everything is “explore” a brand new – and while not giant big – bigger phone.

Bigger in size. The new model will have to prove itself before being big in my heart. 

Merit based employment better than mandate.

People were becoming snarky 

Probably laughing behind their sleek updated model when I was beginning to sound like that commercial “Can you hear me now? Can you hear me now? Now? I’ll go stand by the window…” as the 3G network coverage dwindled. 

No more using the “dropped call” excuse when you really mean “drop dead” when tired of the conversation.

Now the dreaded task: pruning.

Having to take time to edit all the stale phone numbers cluttering the contact list from multiple, multiple companies and jobs.

Something avoided for years as it was just too tedious.

Besides, who knows? Those people might actually return to “A-listers” and be useful contacts someday.

Yeah and that’s probably how people take that dark turn and become hoarders

Slogging through twist and tangles of the list pondering “Who? Who? Whooo?”  

We make our own mysteries  

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge 

Serious western couple ( 1952 Grace Kelly and GAry Cooper in High Noon trailer (USPD, no cr,, artist lives/

“That’s right, Missy. There’s a new G network in town. Either upgrade or go dark.”(1952.Grace Kelly and Gary Cooper in High Noon trailer/USPD/


Leave a Comment
  1. easyweimaraner / Sep 21 2022 9:21 am

    we had an owl in our garage… the hood was in revolution mode… but owls are protected here, the owl won and can stay… owl-lala …

    Liked by 2 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 21 2022 4:08 pm

      Bet you guys could stir around enough to make an owl weary of intrusion into what is obviously owl controlled territory. Hank wants to invite y’all over to circle and join the howl ‘n hoot party.
      Thanks for flying in – paw waves sent!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Helen Devries / Sep 21 2022 9:57 am

    We still have our address book from the sixties…..there are still survivors.

    Liked by 2 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 21 2022 4:05 pm

      People can laugh but when the batteries or power goes down, address books book success! ( have several, too…even one from my dad – not sure why that one’s here but that one also has his hand written notations about people in there…stories all their own
      (Yeah, the dark path into hoarding HAHA)
      Thanks for addressing this concept

      Liked by 2 people

  3. disperser / Sep 21 2022 10:35 am

    Owls are some of my least seen (and photographed) birds. I assume they are around, but I’ve only spotted a few in the daytime or early evening (and, no, I didn’t spot spotted owls).

    I don’t hear them when outside at night, so they might not be around the neighborhood.

    . . . perhaps I should try calling them . . . I am, after all, somewhat of a night owl.

    Liked by 2 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 21 2022 4:02 pm

      Well, they say “Birds of a feather…”
      Worth a trial call…but not sure if owls have call forwarding or accept long distant calls. As long as it’s not a cat call, you might have a chance?
      This is a smaller owl who has been around the neighborhood a number of years – he used to sit on the highest point of houses being built so we’ve only seen him in dim light….they are so serious about staying incognito.
      Owls are one of the best things about being out and away, yes?
      Thanks for nesting a comment here

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Kate Crimmins / Sep 21 2022 1:36 pm

    After buying a new phone last fall, I checked and it was not 5G. Oh good lord! How would they let me buy an out of date phone. It turns out it’s a 4G/LTE (have no idea what that means? Like a light beer?) and it should do me for a while. I hate learning new things too. At least on electronics.

    Liked by 2 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 21 2022 4:15 pm

      I limped along as long as possible with that ancient (but comfortable) iPhone. Hopefully this one will function as many years – just don’t have time ( or focus) to fiddle with the “new and challenging”. Looking forward to the updated camera though…when I get time to read/watch tutorials on that. Meanwhile, back to contact lit update Who’s Who.
      Hope great fall weather has called on you! Coffee goes better with fall and sitting outdoors. Thanks for charging up this comment pile.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. SusanR / Sep 21 2022 3:18 pm

    My sympathy on that new phone. Mine died abruptly a few months ago. No idea why. Verizon was delighted to sell me an expensive new one. As my son often points out, it’s not really a phone anymore; it’s a handheld computer. When it gets complicated, just remember the Apollo astronauts flew to the moon and back with less computer power than your phone. Of course, if we were astronauts we wouldn’t find a new phone so challenging …

    Liked by 2 people

  6. sustainabilitea / Sep 21 2022 9:27 pm

    “Back in the day” our daughters were at the mall and took their phone to the Verizon booth for some reason. They came home to tell us that the person working there had said, “Wow, your phones are old!” Didn’t move us. After all, we were paying for them. 🙂 My husband has always missed his flip phone and now they’re back in style, although looking nothing like the “Beam me up, Scotty” phone we used to have. What goes around comes around but costs more each return trip.

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 22 2022 10:38 am

      I was so sad when they pried my Blackberry out of my desperate little fingers. We’ve still got a couple of flip phones – but of course while nothing was wrong with them, they are not 4-5G ready. It’s just supposed to be a phone – that’s all it needs to do – make calls/ get texts – the camera is a lovely plus, but
      Nothing is simple any more…well, maybe some minds?
      Thanks for calling in

      Liked by 1 person

  7. shoreacres / Sep 22 2022 7:14 am

    I’m still enjoying my iPhone 10, which does everything I want: although what I want is far less than the phone is capable of. That said, I’m about to take the plunge and leave Verizon for (maybe) Consumer Cellular. I don’t need 5MB of data, and I don’t need to be paying Verizon prices for what I don’t need. From what I can gather, making the switch would have me $60 a month. Beyond that, I can keep my own phone and keep my number. I may give it a try, since I don’t need to worry about connectivity in Left Overshoe, Montana.

    Next on the list of modern trials and tribulations? Dealing with another credit card hack. This time, it wasn’t a dollar charge at a gas station, but a $247 charge to Jet Blue. I made the credit card helper-outer laugh when I said that even if I wanted to fly away, it wouldn’t be on Jet Blue.

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 22 2022 10:56 am

      OMG! A busy criminal: now that’s a really bad call at your expense. And the time/stress of straightening it all out. Even Calgon isn’t bubbly cheerful enough to help there. So many people destroying the fun of life.
      (Still a bit sleep deprived, but we are lounging until 6:30 am now….however pre-dawn walks are slightly cooler and much more peaceful before every one and the world wakes up…zzzzzz)
      I hate changing phones as you know. Only forced to do so my Verizon and other carriers as everything is being moved to 5G.Stupid is the idea that if you want to continue your existing age/income cell rate plans, you cannot have a 5G phone. Nope 5G is all full cost. .besides old people don’t deserve/need new 5G – they can muddle along slowly until forced by companies to buy updated phones. Hmmmm class action for discrimination anyone?
      So much to get cranky over these days…..need those early morning walks HAHA
      Thanks for wiring up a comment here


      • shoreacres / Sep 22 2022 1:05 pm

        An update on ye olde credit card. Citi wins the customer service award for the day. I called yesterday to report the fraud. My card was cancelled, and a new one issued. They sent it to me FedEx overnight, and I have it in my hot little hand. I think I’ll go splurge on a tank of gas — once I change my password again. (Although in this case I suspect a database breach somewhere.)

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Ally Bean / Sep 22 2022 1:10 pm

    We have an owl in the woods behind the house. Never see him, but hear him often.

    Any experience you have with a bigger phone [as in size, not as in innards] will be of interest to me. I toy with the idea of upgrading and going large, but can’t quite do it. I don’t like phones to begin with, but if I have to have one I’d like to have one I can easily read [and isn’t that an odd thing to say about a phone whose original purpose was for listening, not reading].

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 24 2022 3:20 pm

      This phone is about 1 inch longer and maybe a half /quarter inch wider than my old one. Phone has to fit jeans pocket for walking dog and fit a pocket in the purse I carry most of the time. However the actual viewing screen size is at least 1/3 taller – – which makes a big difference. I may be able to write/text more easily, but not planing to watch movies/tv on it HAHA.
      And it does seem like an idd thing to say. (I keep remembering my dad’s awkwardness with flat cell phones when he was only used to the old hand receiver of dial phones.)
      Owls, like other wild things are most appreciated in their natural habitats- animals have become much to adaptive to human run environments….either the owl, the neighborhood hawks, or the local eagles must have a killing field near a trail where we walk Hank each day. Phew! Talk about stink. (It does not deter mosquitoes though) We just have to walk faster – and wish for cooler weather and rain!
      Thanks for plugging in a comment

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Littlesundog / Sep 23 2022 10:22 am

    I used to love the owls here… until last year when one hacked up Gracie’s newborn fawn. I have a real respect for their place in the ecosystem, but I no longer love them as used to.

    After Forrest retired and we got an amazing deal from T-mobile – 2 new at no cost iPhone 12 mini’s and a great plan at much less cost than our old AT&T account, we switched despite my concern that there was literally no coverage in Nebraska. I was told that T-Mobile was partnered with US Cellular which has a lot of coverage in my home state. Yes, coverage isn’t great when I travel home to see family – I often have to go outside of a building to get a good signal, and sometimes must travel a few miles out on a hill to be able to send photos or Google anything, but hey, I am not that into my phone that I care for anything more than to get help should I become stranded. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 28 2022 2:06 pm

      Whoa. I remember that post. Yeah, everything has a place…but…
      This owl is a pretty small one. But as sad as it is that open land and habitats are disappearing, I’m happy for any sign of wild.
      I agree, phones are phones. Just not as addicted to them as most. We have shopped signals/companies and aware OK (even goin up hills for signals when we travel) I think if we relocate we’ll do some reevaluating.
      Really happy to hear from you – hope it’s going well there. Been a arealluy hard year for so many.
      Enjoy your available wildness and the fall. It’s porch sitting weather ( well, most places…still hot and mosquitoes here) Frost will be on the pumpkins soon – a the ancient relatives used to say…and I’ll missing Fall wild persimmons

      Liked by 1 person

  10. robstroud / Sep 24 2022 12:27 pm

    Nice collection of thoughts. Made me think for a while how rare it is to hear an owl around our home out in the woods. And seeing one..? Only a few times in the last decade. Fortunately, though, I also rarely see residue deposited during their passing.

    As for phones… I identify with your experience. When we were forced to replace our “bottom-line” iphones, we purchased the bottom-line version that met the new standard. (Then we proceed to disable most of the apps that are built into it.)

    And yes, the pruning of those unneeded and unidentifiable phone numbers is a necessary part of the routine today.

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 28 2022 2:00 pm

      Owls have som sort of primal connection and appeal to people. Lingering residue of mystery or some long lost genetic memory perhaps
      I just want a phone that works and gets signal out – a camera is a big plus. The first thing we do is disable/delete every bloatware app it comes with. With family spread from coast to coast and up and down close to Canada, one of us has to have some stuff the Youngers consider “basic”…like FaceTime texting, and a good map program. Facebook and Twitter and such we can happily do without.
      (Still procrastinating about number input…sigh. But whew their “suspected spam” banner and Spam screens are such an improvement!
      Thanks for dialing in an comment

      Liked by 1 person

  11. jacqueslebec / Sep 24 2022 9:45 pm

    Back to the phone, I’m an old guy the only thing I know how to do on my iphone 13 (I think it is) is find my wife’s phone when it gets lost every few hours.

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 28 2022 1:47 pm

      We do that…far too much. Often I’m sure the phone knows more than I, but the camera is so convenient, I’ll try to have a congenial relationship with the phone.
      Thanks for ringing over here


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