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May 8, 2017 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Flamingos and Grey Matters

Pink flamingo with patch. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

Hot rod pink flamingo. ©

As you can see, my flamingo has racing stripes.

Naturally. To keep up around here.

Mandatory as things come and go: items, thoughts, situations, minutes, and minuets.

Right.

But is it?

A fine dance. One we all stumble through – whether realizing it. Much less understand the meaning of it.

A loved, yet hated, pre-existing condition:

Something one has that only leads to worse case scenario – even with interventions.

Oddly called “life”, this march to death.

Ironic, really

Soft grey abstract design. Vague shadows on the wall. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

Oh, we can make something out of this. Common thinking these days.©

Do you ever wonder about the shape of grey? Not “A”. Grey.

Gray seems fat, yet sassy. Contemporary curved. Thumb your nose at established. Impressionistic painting.

Grey seems classic, solid, traditional. Architectural. Structured like a Greek temple.

Small details matter – in grey lines and other. Sets the table of thought and meaning.

Not obvious to you, perhaps, but that’s how I read: the shape, not the meaningless components.

So my old flamingo is sticking with it to keep up by what ever means.

He  may be aging and plastic, but willing to hot rod it and enjoy what is flying by.

Gets an “A” for effort.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

You don’t know Pink? They just make you smile.

Shadows chairing life. ALL rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted

Shadows chairing life warn against sitting too long.©

 

 

 

May 5, 2017 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Species that bite.

The German. Germans shepherd on outdoor chair. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted.

The German sends her best regards.©

No one wants to be endangered.

Biting may have been routine – even required at one point – but tends to cause invitations to be withdrawn.

Canines figured it out quickly when encountering humans ages ago. (Do not listen to the snorting and snarky comments by the cat.)

Certain species had better get a grip on themselves – instead of others – or they may find themselves to be species non grata.

Someone cautiously poke a FYI to the Komodo dragons. Not the way to win friends and a warm spot by the fire.

As a German Shepherd of formidable stature (my vet always says with great admiration I’m a BIG girl) and trained in skills to gain cooperation from difficult humans, I am aware some are intimidated when I set paw in the door. But wisely, I know my strength and prefer to negotiate with quiet firmness.

However, some people are not lucky enough to have such as I by their side.

Their small fur companions do their best, but sometimes it is dangerous.

Deadly even.

This is the reality – as if victims of domestic violence don’t have enough to fear. I cannot say it better:

Dogs and bFlyer for benefit for pilot program "Safe Paws"creating foster homes for pets of battered women .Bay Area Turning Point Shelter and Friends of League City Animals Shelter.

Flyer for “Safe Paws” program of Bay Area Turning Point Shelter

The most dangerous species of all is out there.

As an intelligent canine, I am not hounding for donations, simply presenting a pet project that might work in your own neighborhood.

Many want to make the world a better place, but are either chasing their tails in overwhelm, or afraid they will bite off more than they can chew.

You could be the pick of the litter for fetching this idea to your community or fostering an endangered pet.

What do you think? Wanna help save a life? Paws up?

I, The German, may be retired to a supervisory role, but still have a good nose for sniffing out good and plenty of encouraging woofs left in me.

Appreciate your sit, stay, and listen

The German

The German has paws working for peace. All rights reserved. no permissions granted. copyrighted

Paws for peace.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

May 3, 2017 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Ain’t Red Rocks’ star dust

Oh, OK. It's upside down, but looks cooler that way: Stage lights during Tom Petty concert. Woodlands. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

Running down a dream. Upside down: matches the event.©

You wait for it. With a daring of overridden fear. The thrill promised.

Like the few seconds between turning the knob on the gas stove, hearing that frantic click, click, click, before the whoosh and the fire.

Concerts are like that.

Last weekend Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers arrived for their 40th Anniversary Tour performance at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, Woodlands, TX.

Of course, a sold-out crowd.

Rock’s better in Red, though.

Next time, we’ll roll back to Denver even if it means a forced march road trip.

Eagles’ guitarist Joe Walsh was stellar as the opener.

The audience was right with him. Expectations built for the headliner.

Lighting up the stage for Eagles guitarist Joe Walsh. Woodlands, TX. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

Joe Walsh is somewhere in that white blob. Just view from prone position on the ground – sort of like the blond drunk chick with the flailing elbows who was vertically challenged even before Petty took the stage. Gotta learn to pace yourself.©

Petty played the list, but…

It’s complicated:  a good concert is a fine weaving between the musicians, the play list, and the audience. This time some intangible chord didn’t wrap.

Petty’s performance seemed a bit too much like a let’s-get-this-done precision stage show with little connection with the audience. I’d hate to say he phoned it in, ’cause the music hit the mark, but…

The English Webb sisters, Charlie and Hattie, well-known vocalists and musicians in their own right, didn’t seem to be utilized to add the dimension they are capable of…although tambourine skills are helpful, I suppose.

An audience a bit too well-heeled? Too suburban? Good mix of old, young, stylish, and the flip of flops, yet an odd flatness even though everyone enthusiastically knew the words and was more than willing to boogie.

Last time at Red Rocks all 3 components were up and running down a dream.

Placed best in shows.

Joe Walsh and crew. Woodlands . Petty concert. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

OK. Not aliens. Joe Walsh and crew. Worthy of being seen from outer space.©

Everything considered, it was a pleasant evening, but calling a Tom Petty concert “pleasant” is  a little weird. 

Shouldn’t feel like going out for dinner and a show, right?

But hey, got some really intriguing abstract artsy images.

Lightly delighted.

Phil, the philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

  • Houston Press concert review: “Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion”
  • More about the Cynthia Woods venue hereIt’s also a cool outdoor space. Flowing  white roof lines of the pavilion always reminds me of Denver Airport’s architecture.

What? You don’t know rocks from Red Rocks?

Rocks of ages. People never could stay away. Even before the Utes most likely. Officially promoted in 1906 as a unique outdoor entertainment venue with perfect acoustics, Red Rocks Amphitheater benefited from major improvements by the Civilian Conservation Corps in 1941.  Beatles, Hendrix, the Dead, as well as Opera and Easter services. (We’ll ignore that 5 year ban after the Jethro Tull riot..) Still rockin’ after all those years.  Never been? Bucket list it.

Joe Walsh in shark t shirt. Woodlands. ALL rights reserved, copyrighted, NO permissions granted

Joe Walsh in this really great Sweet Dreams shark t-shirt. A must have except it’s YSL and $350.00. ©

 

May 1, 2017 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Dishing strategy

Hand-powered dishwasher invented by Carl Hultenberg, 1860.Tekniska museum, Stockholm Sweden.(USPD. pub.date, artist life, photo permitted without restrictions/Commons.wikimedia.org)

Take it for a spin? Direct drive, but a bit cranky. Hand-powered dishwasher invented by Carl Hultenberg, 1860.(Tekniska Museum, Stockholm Sweden/USPD/Commons.wikimedia.org)

Completely wired, routinely spinning, but above all else, when it’s their time, they are electric.

Just how much faith do you put in machines?

Box them and label them as you will, running the dishwasher and running for office swish and swirl alike.

Pre-cleaning is debated hotly.

Some recommend scrubbing proactively while others just turn a blind eye and hope for the best? (The latter the most common.)

Positioning is another item that racks up discussions.

You never know whether to stand like ones together or mix them up to get the best results.

How important is it to keep the delicate ones placed high in the machine surrounded by those just like them while keeping the sturdy, able to withstand anything ones down at the gritty bottom level?

While transparency may signal fragile danger, anything can crack under certain circumstances.

Woman examining dishes in an electric dishwashing machine, 1917. US product copyright before 1923. Keith's Magazine (USPD. pub. date/Commons.wikimedia.org)

How things stacked up then.”Now, Sparky, what do they mean wear thick rubber soled shoes when operating?”(Electric dishwasher, 1917/USPD/Commons.wikimedia.org)

Then there’s the disturbing clinking once the machine is started even though you stacked it in so carefully.

Unexpected noise may warn that things won’t wash well. Enough to rattle anyone.

Promoters’ products and claims promise sparkling results before each cycle.

If desired results aren’t what was expected, all sorts of finger-pointing and blame scatters everywhere: It’s always the substance, or poor organization, or outdated procedures.

Recommended heat can go either way: permanently marring with etching or the reverse smoothing surfaces to a Phoenix-like gleam.

Vintage dressed woman looking a clean glass. Magazine cover. Good Housekeeping Mag.1908 (USPD. pub.date, artist life/Commons.wikimedia.org)

Proof machines can hold grudges: Of course there’s a crack. And, of course, that style is discontinued.(USPD/Commons.wikimedia.org)

After all said and done, you always cautiously examine for crummy flaws before shelving in hope.

May all the salmonella, harmful microorganisms, and invisible threats be washed away so the table can be set for a better day.

Although there’s always a chance that the dish simply gives up and runs away in a swoon.

Phil, the Philosopher of the Hedge.

We have local elections this week: school board, city council, small stuff along with bond elections that determine funding (and taxes). Low level elected officials – some of which are less important/prestigious than people believe; some of which can lead to more important positions with a party in the future. This is where baby elected officials and politicians cut their teeth and hone their political skill and trade. Always amusing.

woman washing dishes. Poster 1940. Seymour Nydorf/NARA (USPD. pub.date, fed employee/Commons.wikimedia.org)

What do you think? Is a country like a restaurant with menus making you think you have choices, some stuff served to you that you don’t like, and you have to pay for it all anyway.(1940.NARA poster/USPD/Commons.wikimedia.org)

April 28, 2017 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Riddles of greens, dreams, and scenes.

Frogs dancing at a party. More English Fairy Tales, 1893, Batten, ill. NY Pub.Lib.(USPD pub.date, artist life/Commons.wikimedia.org)

And there was great rejoicing.(USPD/Commons.wikimedia.org)

Having restless nights wondering “Oh, my. What happened next?”

Three short riddles follow up stories in recent posts:

When is a caution removed as a precaution?

When it’s a frightening towering flood gauge in front of a neighborhood home.

And when it’s learned proper procedures which must include discussions with residents of the community were not followed. (If the residents ever find out who asked for those signs and who decided to immediately install them….)

“Flood signage in SW Houston neighborhood to be removed” 

Wetlands marsh as Pine Gully meets Galveston Bay. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions granted

Natural signage: if you can’t see the tree, water’s too deep to venture in. Of course, a bit of commonsense helps. Recovering marsh where Pine Gully meets Galveston Bay.©

When does a destructive bunch get a wink and a smile from a state legislature?

When some elected officials wonder if tossing poisonous hog bait around is really the for the best.

“Feral hog apocalypse” has been halted in its’ tracks as the company that produces Kaput Feral Hog Bait has pulled its product from use in Texas. (Wild hogs are grinnin’ and rip-roaring through farms, ranches, and subdivisions, but they shouldn’t consider this is a get-out-of-jail-free pardon.)

“Texas House orders study before using poison on feral hogs”

flowers along Pine Gully on Earth Day.. All rights reserved, No permission granted. Copyrighted

Bouquets always seem to last longer in fresh air. Pine Gully trail. Hog free so far. ©

When does a police SUV dovetail into Earth Day?

When it’s designated a bird sanctuary.

Once the Momma Pearl made the 911 call, the orange habitat cones were placed (as required by city ordinances) around PPD Unit 187. The pregnant dove cooed she had reservations: requested a nice window view. She was scammed! Who wants to upset an expectant mother? The city is happily accommodating her.  (Scroll the Pearland Police Facebook page, April 17 nesting, and 20-24-27 for videos/pictures of Pearl and her family. The department also rescues ducklings who fall into storm drains and reunites them with their very anxious mom. FB video of that, too.)

“Pearland police share photo of first chick in the nest on windshield of official SUV”

Dreamy endings.

Now you can rest easy.

Have a great weekend.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

Deer at edge of clearing on Pine Gully trail. All rights reserved. No permission granted. Copyrighted

Another guessing game! See the deer at edge of clearing? A small herd celebrated Earth Day by taking the young ones to see the human zoo.(and Molly was quite polite as the deer, one by one, bolted right past her  – down the bank, up the bank and into the shady woods before stopping in their designated viewing spot.)©

April 25, 2017 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Brace for cat supporting action

Strike while the kitty litter is hot! Now is the time.

What? That should be “letter” not litter? Dunderhead. Tend to your own mess.

Knowing Us as you do, kind visitors, it is obvious We would never stir you in the wrong direction. Might cause nausea.

Staff, remove your hands from across Our mouth. Extreme fang warning! Better.

Western dramatic fight scene (1919-1920 Universal studio flim Blue Streak McCoy. Lobby card. 1919. (USPD.pub.date, artist life/Commons.wikimedia.org)

We don’t care if you have a family. Get back to that desk and complete the Twin Peaks scripts before May 1st! (USPD/Commons.wikimedia,org)

“A writer! A writer. My kingdom for a writer!” There. Problem easily solved. Surely there are some available.

A realm-worthy reward for words possibly on the horizon. Finally.

Frequent visitors know that We, as RC of the Realm, hold writers in high esteem.

On occasion We preside over salons of not only hair, but of wordy lines in books of crinkling pages or of discussions of last night’s offering from the Moving Window of Entertainment – also know by Staff as “The Tea of Bees” for some unknown and illogical reason. (Any dunderhead knows bees are far too industrious to sit around drinking – unlike some species We know...)

Nothing more delightful than a cat lecture lively discussion after watching The Moving Window episodes. Characters, humor, plot twists full of irony, foreshadowing, or satire – Paws down, nothing like a good story told well. 

Yet, without a care for the distress it may cause, there are whispers that The End is Near.

Staff has tried to shield Us – hoping some miracle will occur.

But the reality is that unreality of The Moving Window is threatened.

Cat pandering. ALL rights reserved. Copyrighted. NO permissions grante

We, as RC of the Realm, understand this is is a scary situation, but together We shall survive.©

Wow shall let you read for yourself. Yes, yes, there may be a quiz afterwards.

Long suffering writers who actually managed to secure a place at the script writing desks are struggling under old salary practices despite the changes in the industry and studio profits doubling over the past 10 years.

Men in suits talking in office. Pre 1978. DIck Van Dyke Show publicity photo. (USPD.pub.date, no cr markings/Commons.wikimedia.org)

Different suits, same conflicts. Pre 1978. Dick Van Dyke Show episodes “It wouldn’t hurt them to give us a raise”, and summer reruns not fun for writers.(USPD/Commons.wikimedia.org)

We wish We could wave a paw and voila, a solution. Desperately wishing that. Enough to get hives from worry.

(Note to staff: commence stockpiling The Tea of Bees visual products)

The 2007 writer’s strike lasted 100 days. And what happened?

Reality shows. Multitudes of low-budget, idiotic reality shows.

Viewer supplied funny videos which rapidly became laughing at others getting hurt videos. (And humans wonder why their little one are becoming so mean to each other? Snort. A petite, elegant, polite snort.)

Shows’ seasons were permanently shortened after the strike, so blink and you missed the new episodes.

(What do you mean there is no room left to record? Dunderhead! How are We expected to survive? How many episodes of Beachfront Bargain Hunting can you watch? Cull. Ruthlessly cull.)

But The Horror didn’t end there.

Clever, witty, intelligent scripts with solid plots and well-developed characters seem to have left the buildings forever.

Replaced with potty humor, violence, over-the-top special effects, and a silliness that might entertain a third grader, but not the average Golden Retriever.

And, oddly, a bunch of stereotype characters who are super easy to create dialogue for and place in predictable plot situations.

Then there’s the trendy, pretty on the surface, but shallow dribble  shows. Nothing lasting to chew on there (Or to cough up later to examine at leisure until someone steps in it.)

Can it get any worse, you ask? Probably.

Woman and men talking in office. Mary Tyler Moore Show. Station's newsroom. CBS (USPD.Pub.date, no cr marks/Commons.wikimedia.org)

Crossing union strike picket lines? Mary Tyler Moore fretted over that in the newsroom. (Episode: “Thoroughly Unmilitant Mary“(CBS/USPD/Commons.wikimedia.org)

Such distressing news, but you must prepare yourselves.

By royal decree and expectation Out of gratitude you may leave a can of tuna or salmon by the door.

On your way out.

Take comfort in the fact that “Game of Thrones” episodes are done and ready to show.

We graciously acknowledge your tears of happiness.

You are thrilled. We can see that.

Now carry on.

Perhaps you can rediscover books.

Or face to face conversations.

Staff! Move them along. They seem to be in shock  raptured in hope.

Get those darn cans out of your pockets and exit immediately.

We may need supplies if there’s a strike. Starving writers may be more hungry than usual!

(One can for starving writers; one for moi)

The paw has waved!

Audience fini

Adieu!

I am RC Cat and I approve this message.

April 24, 2017 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Concrete and leveling

The Mounties always get their man. Annie Oakley musically got her gun. And Sophie happily got her sidewalk.

Remember the little girl who wrote Houston’s mayor asking for his help to get her sidewalk to school fixed? (Original post here)

Only to have the Debbie Downer Public Works and Engineering Department respond with “Sure. In a couple of months.”

Surprise: “Bumpy Sidewalk fixed after 8-yr-old girl writes letter to Mayor” 

Mayor Turner met with Sophie and wanted her to know even the smallest hand can move government.

She may have also learned “The squeaky wheel gets the grease.”

Might be a hint for parents in other neighborhoods: get that child some stationary and put the tv station on speed dial.

Large flood gauge sign in front of house. (click2houston)

I don’t think it’s planted in Miracle-Gro. (click2houston)

How would you feel if you woke up one morning to find this in your front lawn?

Talk about curb appeal for anyone trying to sell a house.

The new house on the right is built up (probably constructed after the last big flood), while the older one story home on the left sits at what used to be the normal building height in the area. So what has changed? How did this happen?

This is one of the neighborhoods where small houses on large grassy lots are being by oversized houses crowding out green space or by rows of townhouses. The city/county haven’t improved flood water management all along the watershed as residential density has grown.

Easier to put up signs and shrug, “Consider yourself warned?”

Flood signage causing mixed emotions in SW Houston Neighborhood (Video/article)

Officials are silent about who ordered the signs put up and why they aren’t on the median instead of by someone’s front door or in their yard.

“Important to remember, ” one city official said, “that it’s a $200 fine to remove or destroy a sign.”

Seems unfair it’s fine for the city/county to punish someone for trying to protect their home’s value (and it’s feelings).

Yellow sign in street median showing possible water height in floods (Click2houston)

Not the HOA’s Yard of the Month award. (Click2houston)

So maybe letter writing should be back style for school curriculums. They are supposed to be preparing students for real life experiences, right?

Speaking of schooling, the Flight Attendants’ Union and a certain American Airline person needs to replace Bart Simpson at the blackboard with an assignment to write 100 times: “Don’t mess with distressed moms in Texas or threaten those who step in to help them.”  

President of flight attendants association supports employee and threatens man (and others) who stepped in to assist crying mom.

Exactly who was the one with “air rage” and out of control, Mr. Union President?

Didn’t his mom ever tell him “if you keep shaking’ that finger in people’s faces, it might end up getting’ bitten off?” The level-headed might think that’s something worth writing down and remembering.

Y’all travel on friendly now. Letterhead worthy idea.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

 

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