-- from "Body Perfect" by William C. Rasmussen (Cemetery Dance, December 1988). This is the first paragraph of the first story in the first issue of that legendary magazine.
Things That Are Making Me Happy:
- Memories. My father's 102nd birthday yesterday has brought back many great memories. Also, for some reason I've been humming this song -- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFFCRhYU-vo
- Celebration. My beautiful niece Sarah was married this week in a beach ceremony in St. Lucia. The bride looked stunning and both bride and groom looked over-the-top happy. Congrats to them both. (Sarah, BTW, is super smart on top of being beautiful and talented, and, if she were not a Republican, would be far smarter than I am. She's certainly more beautiful and talented than me.)
- Cooler weather. These past few days, the temperature dropped down to 95 -- a blessed relief from the 100+ earlier. I was able to go out and get some yard work done.
- Interlibrary Loan. The Florida Panhandle is not noted for great library systems. My local fledgling library system tries hard but the selection is poor and they do not offer Interlibrary Loans. One county over, the Pensacola Library has a much better (but still weak selection) and does offer Interlibrary Loans, although their system could do with some improvement. This week I received Jack Snow's Dark Music and Other Spectral Tales, a collection from an occasional Weird Tales writer and author of several Oz books. I'm happy.
- Watched the latest adaptation of Agatha Christie's Ordeal by Innocence. The three-parter was one of the better versions, with Bill Nighy giving a typically wonderful performance. (Production had been slightly delayed after actor Ed Westwick was cut following allegations of sexual assault; Westwick was replaced by Christian Cooke.)
Don't Dis the Moo-Cow Babies: Of course this happened in Florida. Jennifer Anne Kaufman, 46, was one of a trio of women suspected of stealing a car. Officers tried to stop the vehicle but it crashed near a pasture. One suspect remained in the car, but another suspect and Kaufman took off on foot. The second woman was apprehended by a K-9 unit. A completely different type of animal effected Kaufman's arrest. Cows. A herd of cows chased Kaufman through the field, making it easy for police to locate and apprehend her. You can view the bovine takedown here: https://www.dairyherd.com/article/cattle-corral-criminal-florida-during-police-chase
The Week in Trump: Trump railed against Lebron James, who wants to put kids in school rather than cages.
Once again we hear about Trump's Space Force. He probably does not realize that it already exists in effect in the various branches of the military -- each of which has highly sophisticated branches, working in coordination, essentially doing what he has asked (except, of course, for having a flashy futuristic uniform). It would take well over a decade and billions of dollars to separate the present functions to create an individual space force and to create the bureaucracy for it. And, by the way, isn't Space Force a stupid name?
And then there's the wall. Turns out a lot of Mexicans are flying to Toronto ($300 one-way and no visa required) and entering America through the Canadian border. Most experts (the sensible ones) know that the Mexican border wall will never be built because of a slew of legal, financial, and practical reasons. Yet the smoke and mirrors continue from the administration.
Omarosa wrote a book and Trump doesn't like it. Now I don't consider Omarosa to be a credible source and much of what she says is specious, but...she calls Trump a racist and mentally "declined." Although the book has not been released, Trump (kettle) has called Omarosa (who happens to be black) a "lowlife."
The California wild fires were caused by California's environmental laws. Betcha didn't know that.
And Trump wants to limit citizen rights for legal immigrants. And while he continues to damn "chain migration," Melania's parents became American citizens this week through -- you guessed it -- chain migration.
And Melania has been speaking out against some of her husband's policies.
And everybody appears to be picking on Trump's "wonderful" son, Donald Jr. Yet Daddy's tweets appear to be throwing him under the bus.
And Jeff Sessions is "scared stiff and missing in action," while Wilbur Ross is accused of bilking over $100,000,000, and Scott Pruitt's replacement continues to dismantle protections and to destroy our environment.
And there's now a trade war with Turkey.
On the anniversary of the Charlottesville march, Trump tweeted against hate. Only took him a year.
The editorial boards of at least 70 newspapers have pledged to fight Trump's "fake news" canards.
I haven't covered everything but be assured that we are living in interesting times.
Grief: After more than two weeks of holding the body of her dead calf, the orca known as Tahlequah has finally released the body of her new-born. Love and grief are not the exclusive property of humans.
Wow. Just Wow: Yesterday, after a delay on Saturday, NASA launched a spacecraft designed to touch the sun. the Parker Probe will orbit the sun, getting deeper and deeper into its corona and travelling faster than anything ever made on earth. The probe is designed to get answers to questions that have been plaguing scientists for years.
I'm just glad that Trump's Space Force isn't in charge.
V. S. Naipaul: I have never read anything by V. S. Naipaul, the Nbel lauriate who died this week at age 85, nor am I likely to. Nonetheless, I am saddened by his passing.
My oldest possession is a spittoon
My spittoon goes back a ways into history
Where it originated is a bit of a mystery
It has a bullet hole right about here
I'm told that Buffalo Bill Cody put it there
From over across the street to impress his girl
The lass who went by the name of Annie Oakley
She could ride and shoot with the very best of all men
She would beat them all at their very own game
Riding and roping, trick shots gathering fame
She out shot Frank Butler who fell for her
and he was forever happy as her lover.
In Cody's wild west show she pleased a lot
of people who loved her as "Little Sure Shot"
-- Charles Henderson
Today is the 158th birthday of Annie Oakley.