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April 22, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Point and pointy stick

vintage cats on bikes. 1880. (Pearl Series by McLoughlin Bros. Pub./

“Whiskers, tell me, if we have on clothes, how come we don’t have on shoes?”(USPD/

Like or like not, similes can make people queasy. A good way to get poked with a pointy stick. Catty remarks are only the opening today. (Oh, it ends up there, too. You know how it is these days. Keep reading.)

1.Holding the Olympic Games in Brazil is like inviting a bunch of strangers over to a house on fire.

2.”Needing” a new ZL1 Camaro where the traffic is usually in total gridlock is a bit like a couple “needing” a house with 6+ bedroom suites.

Hiding no more, this ZL1 Camaro is out of camo and off for testing (What a job. Bet your dad never told you about that one….)

Dealers don’t know the price, but if you want to hand them a big chunk of money and promise to pay what they decide eventually (adding the cost of all the build-the-sale items like polishing tires, leather seat conditioning, license plate dusting..), they might order what you want on an allotted slot vehicle, and might not sell it out from under you in the fall… Seriously, is that like anything?

But make it a convertible and arrest-me-red and I might be willing to talk about it….Molly likes to feel the wind in her fur. There will be long road trips west, right? Like that’s gonna happen…

car. 2017 ZL1 Camaro (

250 pounds lighter and faster than ever, condemning this car to stop and go city traffic is like hitching a billion dollar race horse to a plow. Outrunning fans still, this 2017 ZL1 Camaro floors it on the way to the test tracks. Oh, OK Detroit. We know you’ve been seeing a few of them around recently. Stop being smug.(

3. Overly enthusiastic news anchors constantly counting down the number of days before 2017 Super Bowl opens here is a bit like trying to convince a small child broccoli is yummy and edible.

I know the event is like Christmas for the hotels, restaurants, Uber, the entertainment districts, and escort services, but there’s always that after the celebration let down when you didn’t get what you wanted and there’s trash waiting.

Besides all the early hyper-excitement is far too much like an unpopular child who finally got invited to the party.

4.One lost little girl has a fairy tail ending to her story. She’s very popular right now.

A couple out for a walk saw her crouched in the grass. It’s like they were her white knights who magically arrived to save her from the storms.

Polite. Completely well-mannered, she did everything they asked. Many hugs and kisses.

Snug, dry, and well fed now. Authorities are looking for her people – to make sure what their plans are to keep her safe.

You see, it’s like this, tigers, no matter how cute and sweet, are not allowed to live in there.

young tiger about to get in truck. (Conroe police dept/animal control)

“Hop in? Oh, I love car rides. You’re not strangers are you? Oh, good I can go with you.” (Conroe Police Dept/animal control)

And what’s not to like about all that?

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

Conroe's mystery tigress. Conroe Police Dept.

Misplace your tiger? Conroe Police Department would like to have a word with you. She is nicely leash trained. Knows how to sit and roll over, too, but missing her toys.(Conroe police dept/animal control)



April 20, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

A guide: Fun with Floods

Life is good in Houston – “God willing and the creek don’t rise” – which it did. I’m thinking about writing a brochure touting Houston – or was that a local survival guide… already started in fact. What do you think?

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Fish in the street after flood. . (Audrey Seykora/

Love waterfront property but can’t afford it? No problem. Sooner or later it’ll come right to you!. Just imagine fishing from your front porch. (Audrey Seykora/

man in water biking. (Jon Shapley/Hou.chron/

Worried you won’t get enough exercise with the land being so flat? Forget about it! Work those muscles biking with water resistance. ((Jon Shapley/Hou.chron/

Lumber stacks floating down the street. (. Andrew Dansby/

With companies floating out new ideas, you wooden have to wait for needed products to be delivered to your door. (Andrew Dansby/

men wading down flooded

Worried about where to buy a house? Get your waders and slosh along. It’s  the best time to check out whether a house will manage the weather. (This is true. It’s how we house hunt.) (

people in boats.citizen rescuers.(Melissa Phillip/

It’s easy to meet people when you’re new here. “Meet and Greet “events occur spontaneously encouraging those of all ages to get out and mingle. We love outdoor good sports here. (Melissa Phillip/Hou.Chron/

People in kayak with pit bull. (Melissa Phillip/Hou.chron/

You might even learn something new like kayaking or that pit bulls can behave well. (Melissa Phillip/Hou.chron/

truck transport. (Steve Gonzales/Hou.chron/

Some have heard Houston lacks adequate transportation. Metro does utilize some unique vehicles…but it’s Texas. You know, everything is bigger. Can’t mess with people’s expectations. (Steve Gonzales/Hou.chron/

truck in flood water.(James Nielsen/Hou.Chron/

No need to worry about what kind of car to buy to fit in. Use Metro or Uber until settled. Not a great idea to  buy a new or used one for a while. Wait. Most damaged/marginal ones will be transported to used car lots out of state shortly.(James Nielsen/Hou.Chron/

armadillo rescue by abc:ktrk reporter.(Steve Gonzales/Hou.chron/

Strange residents here worry some. But even armadillos welcome a friendly face. (rescue by abc/ktrk reporter.Steve Gonzales/Hou.chron/

armadillo rescue by KTRK/abc reporter. ( Steve Gonzales:Houston

Houston showers all with Texas hospitality. OK. Everyone scooch. Always room for one more on high ground during a ‘rain event’. (Steve Gonzales/Houston Chronicle/

woman in flooded house.(Jon Shapley/Hou.Chron/

We make getting motivated for spring cleaning easy here. This year 9 counties are washing that old out of their there. (Jon Shapley/Hou.Chron/

collapsed freeway retaining wall. (Jennifer O'Rourke)

Don’t enjoy water sports? How about a mud slide? Spa treatment included! (collapsed freeway retaining wall. Jennifer O’Rourke)

Buffalo Bayou flooded. (Nick Anderson/Hou.Chron/

We don’t isolate the fun. Especially this year with the entire city getting into the swim of things. It’s really a pretty town – lots of green spaces. Looks like someone left the sprinkler system on again along Buffalo Bayou. (Nick Anderson/Hou.Chron/

Bluebonnets by bayou.

Bayous are scenic with parks and bike trails….and they self water. (

skyline.bluebonnets and downtown. (

After a bit you grow to appreciate the variety of beauty around. (

More big thunder storms in TX. Weather radar. (

They say this band is moving fast. Only 1-2 more inches of rain on totally saturated ground and rivers just cresting. And more developing behind this line. I’ve got about 20 minutes. “Molly, get up. Potty now!” (





April 18, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Cowboys in boats

people swimming and saving horse.(Mark Mulligan/Houston Chronicle/

You can lead a horse to water, but obviously leading them out of it is much more difficult. (Mark Mulligan/Houston Chronicle/

Leave none behind. That’s the rule.

Firemen rescuers are carrying large German Shepherds to boats as well as babies in plastic tubs.

Houston has had a “rain event” (Who comes up with these names?) which could be easily be categorized as a hurricane practice flood or the Annual Memorial Day Flood early.

sHorses struggling in flood waterand stable. (abc13 KTRK)

Normally a lovely stable in a wooded area along Cypress Creek. Horses frantically treading water unable to escape their pens. (

One of the most disturbing videos this morning showed frantic horses trapped in their wooden fenced pastures and stable when Cypress Creek rose too fast. 

Emergency contacts said “Sorry, people had to come first”, but County Judge Emmett, the county animal officers, the SPCA, and local cowboys in boats said, “We leave none behind.”

boat headed to rescue horses in flood. (YouTube/Springhappen)

Cowboys in boats to the rescue. (You Tube Springhappen)

Of the 80 Arabian and Quarter horses (both known for endurance), 65+ have been rescued.

A couple of horses are still being brought out even now. Others (about 10) are loose, but are on higher ground – just lost and mooching off someone else’s lawn.

Owners of another stable that works with autistic children using horse therapy watched the weather closely last night. At 3 am they arrived with trailers to move their 15 horses.

Suddenly they realized the water was rising too fast, so they loaded the horses they could and coaxed the remaining horses to follow them along the road that was flooding.

Safety was found on high ground by a volunteer fire station where the people made a corral out of their cars. While the group has lost helmets, tack, stable, and all, the horses are happily munching the station’s nice lawn.

Rescues of both man and beast continue.

Thought these might make you smile.

pinto horse being led to safety.(M.Mulligan/hou.chron/

Pinto horse being led down the road to safety of a trailer.(M.Mulligan/hou.chron/

A break in the rain. (Dogs cheering).

Bayous are draining.  More rain likely tonight and tomorrow.

That money spent on expensive boat foul weather gear was so not a waste!

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

2 horses swimming. (mulligan/hou.chron/

“Oh, neigh. You and your water front property. This type of swimming can’t be therapeutic.” (Mulligan/hou.chron/

white horse and man swimming to shore.(M.Mulligan/Hou.chron)

“Look if we’re to continue this dance, cowboy, we have to decide who’s going to lead.” (Mulligan/Hou.chron)

horse being lead to safety by woman and men. (Mulligan/hou.chron/

“Did you book a room with some nice dry hay? Nothing like dry meal after a hard day.” (Mulligan/hou.chron/

Brown horse with reins. (M.Mulligan/hou.chron/

“Whoa. I never signed up for rock climbing for hooves.”(M.Mulligan/hou.chron/

Horse being dragged to safety. (Mulligan/hou.chron/

“Hey, have we been properly introduced? My mane is such a mess.”(Mulligan/hou.chron/

Thanks to all who checked on neighbors or brought big transports, trailers, or boats to rescue both people and horses.

Applause for all the first responders.




April 18, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

The Money Shot

ABC 13. Reporter assisting stunned man who drove into flooded street. (

ABC 13. Reporter assisting stunned man who drove into flooded street. Watch video below. (

We are having what they now call a “major rain event” in Houston stunning newcomers.

Over a thousand homes are flooded already from the massive front that snowed in Denver and is colliding with a strong warm Gulf system loaded with moisture. It started before midnight last night and is predicted to continue until Tuesday morning. Stalled right over Houston.

Official April rainfall records shattered.

First responders are concentrating on high water rescues (They have experience), so do not call if you are freaking out with water creeping into your garage or front door. Emergency management says, they can’t do much about that, just get your pets and family up higher in your home and do not get out. Attics are good. (FYI, we don’t have basements here…for a reason….water)

Locals saw it coming days ago. Stocked up on chips, beer, and food that doesn’t need electricity. Charged up cell phones and computers.

SUV in street flood.

This is one of the reasons why locals never park their cars in the street at the house overnight. (abc.13)

And made sure the flood insurance was paid up. It’s flat here. Rains enough in any location and it will flood no matter how far from the coast you are. That’s why so many people here choose to drive large pickup trucks and SUVs. DUH. Seriously people, it’s common sense. – don’t criticize if you don’t live here.

Bayous are out of their banks. Streets are now canals.

And channel 13 KTRK/ABC got the Money Shot a bit ago.

Steve the reporter got his Dan Rather moment they all dream of as he rescued a poor man (obviously new to the area) who thought it was a big puddle not a street flooded enough to already cover one car completely.

Once the bayou is out of the banks, turn around don’t drown…..not just a childish chant.

Here’s the video of Steve in the White Oak Bayou /Heights area

Molly forgives me for waking her up so early and forcing her out into the back yard half asleep scream “Go potty. Go Potty now” during a break (Whew)

AS RC Cat says, “Looks like a busy day of napping.”

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.


April 18, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Bob: Twenty-three. Sight review.

Bob on table. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted

Stepping up the look see.©

Simply to clarify.

A picture being worth.

Easier to see than say.

File for future reference.


Drone over Clear Lake before primaries. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. copyrighted

Squint. Not a bird. Not a plane. Drone. Big one. No quacks, no treats, no interest to Molly Malamute.©

Not drone:

Works it, but not a worker be.

Elizabeth Taylor in red dress and fur., 1955? (Studio publicity still/, cr lapsed/

Elizabeth Taylor: not flighty. (USPD/

Both lookers.

(Pausing to absorb)

Both dangerous.

(Slight shrug of shoulder)

Not to confuse as one sees naturally



Not drone.

How droll.




More Bob here.

(Who is Bob? Simple.)




April 14, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Not crazy, this rainbow quilting

Rainbow rising over Atacama base camp for ALMA Observatory. (ESO:A. Silber/

Not a sci-fi movie set. Rainbow rising over Atacama base camp for ALMA Observatory.(ESO/A.Silber/

Such a jumble of disjointed rainbow segments that afternoon. Like a child’s Chutes and Ladders game board. Mischievous arcs giggling and darting: momentarily here, then, over there. A pale one shyly stretched from horizon to 10 o’clock. Between snowy puffs, mini rainbows sorted themselves in the bright blue sky – as if finding their assigned seats in a piece-worked quilt.

Strikingly intense, one vivid ribbon jolted almost vertical like a striped trouser’s left leg.

“It’s for you, babe. This sky show is yours.”

I memorized it all as fast as possible and shooed the images west.

If they could make it to the pass, surely the Rockies would speed them onward. 

Despite the bright sun, a few rain drops toyed with us.

Not surprised. Into every life…

White clouds in blue sky. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

Doesn’t look like rainbow weather. Were they waiting in the wings?©

Rainbows are show stoppers.

They are really round, you know.

The complete view limited by the horizon, so people only see half – unless you’re in  a plane. Each end of a rainbow’s arc is less visible since there’s usually fewer rain drops near the ground to dance with the light.

NASA features a full circle rainbow near Perth, Australia here.

Just like human twins, double rainbows can be either identical or different in appearance.

Double rainbows are two separate concentric arches hand in hand across the sky. Like with people, one of the twins is often a paler image of the other. The secondary rainbow’s color sequence is the reverse of the brighter one.

A true twinned rainbows start out as one at the base then split into two running independently across the sky. Both of these rainbow twins have their colors streaking in the same order.

Even rare triplet rainbows are possible. (One from Japan in 2012 here.). There are many other rainbow variations, too: reflected rainbows, reflection rainbows, stacker rainbows, monochrome rainbows, even rainbows dancing with fog or moonlight.

Quite a colorful crowd. (Read more here)

White clouds' ready for their close-up. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted

A few rain drops, then wait for it, wait for it – and suddenly…see the next picture.©

That afternoon’s intriguing sky show could have been Mother Nature’s thanks.

Those with fur, fins, or feathers from coastal wetlands to mountains high may have felt a small ripple and wondered. Winds dutifully slipping through aspen branches to tell.

The message came shortly.

Our crowd is one less. We’ve lost our environmental warrior princess, our smiling yoga guide. Seen off by cat, dogs, and family at home.

A life lived well. A world left better. Wonder embraced.

Rainbows to dance you on, baby.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

rainbow by bridge. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

Although busy sending the sightings winging their way west, I did manage one to hold onto. This was the briefest flash of a rainbow you can imagine. Just as my cousin’s kid: gone too soon. ©






April 13, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Fracture and repeat. Fractals, you.

From sleeping under the moon to always on zoom, each generation wails about the complexity of “modern” life and glorifies simple life of the past, the “Good Old Days”.

Couple on motorcycle.1977 Bionic Woman.(Lindsay Wagner and Evel Knievel) NBC.(

“Hang on like bionic babe.”(1977 “Bionic Woman” NBC/USPD/

Kinda like observations on the developmental phases of a growing child.

Every stage means problems – to which everyone says “Don’t worry. It’s a phase. They’ll grow out of it”.

Neglecting to tell you that each phase brings its’ own set of problems.

(Oh, and you just thought it would be easier when they could walk instead of being carried. Then, ride a bike or skateboard. If only they could drive themselves….)

Couple on horse with woman riding riding pillion. Project Gutenberg.(Gibey) "Horses: Past and Present".(Close of 19th century.)

Hang on. Tighter. It’s fine since you’re riding pillion.(PD/Project Gutenberg/Close of 19th century.)

Cradle to grave, it doesn’t stop. A pattern in repetition.

If that doesn’t fracture your thinking, nothing does.

Know about fractals?

Never ending patterns. Identical on different scales. Repeating over and over like a loop in various sizes.

Not just geometry or math or art or trees with leaves or galaxies or hurricanes or coastlines or blood and lung vascular systems or circadian rhythms or computer graphics….

Fractals permeate the natural world, as well as, the human ones.

couple on horse. 1840-1888.Centra Asia. (Aleksandr Kun /, reprod of PD image/

“Hang on, woman. You’re mine. They can’t criticize.” (1840-80.Central Asia/ Alexandra  Kun/ USPD/

Since nature is heavy with fractals, could human behavior also be a type of fractal?

Basic child development repeats individual after individual: generation after generation

Rural community turns into town, then city, to metroplex following a pattern

Societies and civilizations rise and fall. Predictably.

“History repeats itself. Historians repeat each other.” (1880Max Beerbohm)

Flintstone caveman set. Fred, Wilma, Pebbles Flintstone at Ankara.(Nevit Dilmen/

Ah, the joys of a simple life. (Fred, Wilma, Pebbles Flintstone’s happy home at Ankara./Nevit Dilmen/

A frenzy of fractal fever!

Fractal or fractured?

Small fissure in time.

Simply a figment of the imagination.

Mother and child.1913."Ah, my beautiful mansion" Gazette du Bon Ton No6 (

1913.Simply a happy family.”Ah, my beautiful mansion”(USPD/

It is what it is, to repeat a thought.

Phil the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

This post fractured from Larissa Thompson’s take on the Daily Post Photo Challenge “The Future” …so it’s a bit of a fractal or not?

Simpson family at home by their couch.. (Gabriel Sheppard/

North, South, East, West: happy home is simply best.(Gabriel Sheppard/

Frantic for fractals? Once you see them, the world never looks the same.

woman with plant. International Space station. Anousheh Ansari with plant grown in Zvezda Serv. Module.(

The simple life forced? Back to basics: veggies in outer space.Happily home at the International Space Station: Anousheh Ansari and plant which happens to show fractals. (NASA/USPD/





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