It was Bourbon Night

Wow I blew through post 1500 a while back without any ceremony. In fact next month will be my 4 year anniversary of this drivel. I can't believe I stuck with it this long.

Last night I had an appiontment with some clients that live in Shalotte, NC on the Lockwood Folly river. Lockwood Folly is a cool name for a river isn't it?

I was running early so I went ahead on to their house. I know them well so I felt it would be okay coming a few minutes early. I rang the doorbell and heard many voice talking loudly.

"Come on in Wreggie....we are having our monthly bourbon tasting!"

What they were sampling was Blanton's Single Barrel Bourbon. Maybe 8 guys and two women were holding glasses with a dark amber liquid. No ice, no mixers. And they had made a big dent in the bottle already.

I appreciate the hard work and art that goes into a good bottle of bourbon. This was very good. It was darker than Markers Mark and had a more complex flavor than my regular bourbon. Plus it was 100 proof rather than 80 so the alcohol made it a bit hotter.

I drank about a 1 inch glass and began to see why they were all so happy and loud.

I found out that they were all Vietnam Veterans, they all lived in this golf community, they were all in their 60's and they all loved good bourbon. This was a good warm drink on a cold winter night. It was fun for sure. What a fun way to meet people.

Been There...Done That

Yesterday we brought a new iPhone into the world. It is a 32 gig replacement for Gigi's old 1st generation iPhone. It is much faster than her old iPhone and it comes with some fancy compass that gives out the exact coordinates of where she is in case she needs to order some air or artillery support.

I am going back down to the coast today to see some clients, load up on some seafood, and tow the RV back home. Just call me Captain Carbon.

Sunday is our final home game against the Saints. It promises to be a cold and very windy day. Right now they are calling for temps in the upper 30's with a steady wind of 15 MPH gusting to 29 MPH. That should put the wind chill in the solid 20's.

Gigi doesn't get it. Why would I go to a game where our team has no chance of a playoff and will likely loose to a great team and the weather promises to be miserable?

Because it is the NFL....big time tackle football. There will be cooking, grilling, laughs, yelling, adult beverages, music, pageantry, more laughs, and sports history being made. To stand in any football bowl give me a rush. To be in my home bowl in my home seats cheering my team with friends is about as big of rush as I get here.

I enjoy snorkeling and hiking about as much so image my intensity when I hike to Jack's Bay in St Croix to snorkel.

It is never been there done that for any of these activities.

Heat

Last night I was kicking back watching Monday Night Football when waves of deep yawns inspired me to sleep more than the game inspired me to stay awake.

It was cold outside. We are having lows in the mid to low 20's now. We fight the cold in this part of the world with good insulation and a heat pump. Heat pumps work very good down to the mid 20's. We were at that transition zone from heat pump to auxiliary strip heat and the air in the house was a bit chilly.

I went to bed.

And so it came to pass that at 1:30 AM I was awaken from a coma-like deep RIM sleep by a wife who had a pissy attitude she gets when the TV doesn't work right or the power goes out. She was shooting a barrage of questions and orders at me and I was still in a Windows Vista brain boot sequence. I wasn't sure what was going on and frankly my brain was still waking up.

"The heat is off and it is 50 degrees!", she yelled.

I stumbled around to the various breaker panels and everything seemed in order. I told her to call Van our heater guy. She did.

Van was sound asleep as he should have been but his wife was up. He had fallen asleep on the sofa watching the game. Van finally came to the phone and Gigi handed me the phone. Two men asleep grunted at each other and Van said he would be there in a minute.

Van came in just moments all ashamed that the heater failed on his watch. He crawled under the house. We heard some knocking and pounding and the heater came back on. There was a bad breaker down there and all was now right with the world.

Let Me Count the Ways.....


I have had my iPhone for almost a year now and my love for it grows daily.

Just yesterday I got the free Kindle app and downloaded the Reagan Diaries for $9.99. It is easy to use, instant and not bulky like a book.

I use my Tide app when I am at the coast and I use my Accuweather app several times a day. My Associated Press app and my CNBC app push only the most serious breaking news to the forefront to keep me knowledgeable.

My iPhone lets me dictate and mostly understands my accent so I can text and email. I can speak to google and it finds what I am looking for. My phone keep the police away with Trapster. I Facebook, Ebay and Paypal on my iPhone. I can listen to my local radio station anywhere with their app or satellite radio with a Sirius app. I track my flights and my friends flights when I am designated to pick them up at the airport.

I can instantly call up my local TV schedule or movies or good place to eat wherever I am because it always knows where I am.

I can bank, surf the web, take pictures and shoot video. I can even tether my phone now so I can use my laptop even if there is no wifi around via the phone's 3G network.

It is a darn good phone too and contrary to the TV commercials the Att network works good for me wherever I travel.

My iPhone is synced via google wirelessly so any change my assistant or I make to my calendar or contacts instantly shows up on my phone.

Yes I even have the iFart app when I want to play a prank.

I watch movies on my iPhone and listen to my entire collection of music via the 16 gigs of storage.

All this and wrapped in a protective Otterbox.

The Christmas Flounder

We are at the Southport, NC RV campground for Christmas. This is an interesting mix of people, first group being like us who basically are recreating in a dirt yacht and this is our second vacation home albeit mobile. We come from all walks of life and social stations from wealthy to barely subsiding. We will stay a short while and then move on. We are the most social.

Then there are the longer term mobile who are employed at the local nuclear power plant working jobs that last a few months to a few years. Their reason for staying here is that they can live cheaply and this allows them to save their per diem thereby enhancing their take home pay. These people are the least social because they usually dislike their jobs and their living conditions.

Third there are the low income folks who find this lifestyle necessary to make ends meet. Usually they are not mobile but still have an RV capable of moving with new tires or they have chosen to permanently mount their RV or if they are flamboyant enough their mobile home to the site. If their living quarters are paid for they can get by comfortably on take home pay as little as $1000 a month. They seem to be fairly happy with their lot in life and they are social and friendly to the first group.

And now it is Christmas with all the tacky lights adorning the RV's.

Last night we all gathered in our RV for supper and watched a pay per view movie The Hangover. We decided then that we would have fresh flounder for supper Christmas eve.

I went out this morning to the local fish monger and ordered up enough flounder for 5. This fish monger always has the freshest seafood locally caught. If it is not local and fresh (not frozen) it is clearly marked. The place is spotless and does not smell of fish.

The tall fellow suggested that 1/2 pound each would be good for 5 and he took out three flounders, scaled them and filleted them in front of me. Then he weighted the pile of fish and it was exactly 2 1/2 pounds.

So tonight a non traditional diner with family and I like that.

Christmas Eve

We are all settled in in Southport for Christmas. I have the fireplace CD going on the TV....I connected to the Internet via my iPhone hack and Direct TV is working so I can watch the Pope tonight if I was Catholic.

We've already had one "sugar plum" accident last night left by Abby.

Now for an old fashion Christmas with Mutha.

Travelin' Day

Today my bride and dogs head to Southport for Christmas.

I may be in an Internet blackout for the next few days and this is not stress relieving at all to me. What I have done to combat this is hack my iPhone to where I can use the on board 3g as an Internet connection. I know there is a good 3g signal where my RV is so hopefully I can maintain connectivity with the outside world. Otherwise I may have to resort to buying old fashioned newsprint on pulp wood. Lets hope not.

In addition I have had some issues setting up the satellite down there last week. I'm taking down a new rebuild kit. After all...what is Christmas without good crisp TV and the Internet?

Dude....

Yesterday was football Sunday and the Carolina Panthers were playing at 8:15 PM against the Vikings. Bret Farve is the quarterback so this game was a big deal. Bret Farve carries rock star status among his followers.

It was very cold out and as the sun set so did the temperature.

About the begining of the second quarted I decided I couldn't hold my urge any longer. I headed to the mens room and waited in line a a few hundred like minded guys.

Finally it was my turn. I dug through my thick clothing, took aim and fired. I was starring at the cinder block wall listening to the game and enjoying the relief I was experiencing when the guy to the right of me interrupted me by saying, "Dude...you're peeing on the floor." I looked and so I was. Suddenly 53 years of near peeing perfection went down the drain.

I corrected my aim, apologized and continued on for another minute.

Another reason I hate the cold winter.
I'll take your suggestions and write in more detail about the previous post. They are all good stories.

Funny as I looked at the list yesterday and the comments I couldn't help but notice that an old friend of mine who I rarely see anymore was with me on five of those events. I called him last night and we had some good laughs. He reads the blog but never comments.

Today I head southeast to Southport with the RV in tow. There is a possibility I will meet up with a blogger Micky-T who is out of his regular stomping grounds and running through NC on some family errands.

I'm back home on Thursday.

10 Things

I have played with lion cubs in my living room.

I have eaten Easter dinner with a serial killer.

I have transported adult black bears.

I have prayed over a man and his family who was dying and I acted as clergy.

I have had a gun drawn on me by police.

I have been shot at once by an idiot.

I have shared a $600 bottle of wine with a friend. (his treat)

I have had 5 grand mall seizures.

I once saw a fireball pass overhead me during a violent thunderstorm while back backing on top of a mountain.

I have had pain at 10 on a scale of 1 to 10 and it wasn't my kidney stone.

Feel free to ask me details of any of these things.

Hybernation

You know...the bears have this all figured out.

Munch out and get fat in the fall. Then find a warm dark dry space and sleep all winter.

Wake up in the spring hungry and grumpy and have no memory of winter.

They could DVR the entire football season.

Before and After

Wendy,

We are almost at the point where that bottom limb on the coconut tree should be trimmed off. It's beginning to block the water. And we have the boat show to watch you know.

reggie
You are too funny. I know I know. I’ll get it hacked off, just for you, by special request.
XO
W
Thank you. Looks better already.

Reggie


A Discovery!

I'm a guy so I am slow but I have made a discovery. I can now discern a womans time of the month remotely via Facebook. This is handy if a guy needs to avoid being broadsided emotionally by any particular woman that he may need to converse with.

Just like watching a quarterback can help determine a play call. Just like I know Gigi is lying with 100% certainty by her mannerisms. Women give out hints in their Facebook posts and comments.

Of course the younger the woman the stronger the radar and eventually it becomes a very faint blip in their 40's and 50's. But isn't that how it is supposed to work?

I'll do more research here and publish my findings later. Men can thank me later.

This is Why I like to Wake Up

Brilliant - from Wall Street Journal

At least several hundred mile-junkies discovered that a free shipping offer on presidential and Native American $1 coins, sold at face value by the U.S. Mint, amounted to printing free frequent-flier miles. Mileage lovers ordered more than $1 million in coins until the Mint started identifying them and cutting them off.

Coin buyers charged the purchases, sold in boxes of 250 coins, to a credit card that offers frequent-flier mile awards, then took the shipments straight to the bank. They then used the coins they deposited to pay their credit-card bills. Their only cost: the car trip to make the deposit.


According to Dr. Karen Weatherby, a gerontologist and author of the study, gawking at women’s breasts is a healthy practice, almost at par with an intense exercise regime, that prolongs the lifespan of a man by five years.

She added, "Just 10 minutes of staring at the charms of a well-endowed female, is roughly equivalent to a 30-minute aerobics work-out."

More Interesting Facts (to me) and Observations

Sometimes when you buy Pillsbury canned biscuits in St Croix, the dough is gray. The biscuits turn out gray but taste the same. I don't eat them but I am told this. I guess they sat on a boat too long.

I can fall asleep in my chair sitting up and sleep deeply. I did it last night for an hour before I realized it and went to bed. My mother has done this all her life.

Google now has their own dictionary http://www.google.com/dictionary and as of yesterday their own DNS server to speed up your searches. http://code.google.com/speed/public-dns/ I like this and made the DNS change. Yes I am a nerd.

It is Friday, the bills are paid, I feel good and I have two games to watch this weekend. This is good.

I'm mixing it up Sunday at the tailgate...calling audibles so to say. No brats this weekend. Good old American bun length hot dogs with slaw, relish, chili and onions. Mustard and ketchup if you like with choice of hot sauce. I'm making the chili. Of course they'll be some burgers and Bash is bringing flank steak to grill. It will be cold.

Daily Drivel

I noticed that St Croix got their credit rating yesterday of BBB- for their new 30 Million bond issue. Not too bad considering the economy and their lack of bond history. How can you go wrong with rum backed bonds though?

Around here our local unemployment rate has topped 12% and rising. This is unheard of in these parts. I sure hope the "trickle up" federal stimulus approach will trickle up soon. There are a lot of people to fill the wind mill and power grid jobs at present but I don't see anything whirling except jaws flapping.

We are down to a very lean mixture of daylight at 9.9 hours and falling. What daylight we are getting is obscured by clouds or very low in the sky which is bright in the face and casts long shadows. Saturday calls for snow flurries and Sunday will be cold and windy at the game. I must build a Wreggie room where the lights are bright, the humidity is high, and the fake windows show summer or tropical views when you look at them.

I am always surprised and caught off guard when someone with an opposing position turns so quickly to anger when I unveil my opinion. Just because I don't "think right" doesn't mean you need to be so pissed off. How about a little civilized dialog? I don't get mad when I listen to your drivel.

SLR Cameras

I am a point and click guy when it comes to cameras. I like action photos and random shots. Very few people pose well in my opinion.

I must have a thousand holiday pictures of my MIL and BIL posed in the exact same expression. The only difference is 30 years of ageing.

I like cameras simple....I ain't shooting for The National Geographic. I used to have a fancy film camera back in the day with lenses, f stops, focus rings and all the hardware and it was a pain in the ass and rarely led to better random unrehearsed photos. Usually I can make changes later on the computer.

It pains me so when my MIL takes 80 seconds to push the damn shutter release to take my annual picture at Christmas of me looking pissed off sitting in my chair on my PJs. Same picture every year...the only difference is 30 years of ageing.

I love my iPhone camera. It is good enough to see but fuzzy enough to make everyone look good.


Here and idiot has complicated a perfectly good iPhone camera.

Radio Shack

[mortally wounded] "Let me know...when you see...a Radio Shack". ~ Kung Pow! Enter the Fist

I have determined that my on again off again problem with my High Definition TV is attributable to a small B band doohicky on the back of my receiver inline with the cable coming into the satellite box.

They cost about $13 online and Direct TV acts like they cost hundreds of dollars and is balking at sending me a new B band doohicky.

So yesterday morning I headed to the local Radio Shack to find said part.

I was the first customer of the day and walked in on two employees conversing. I turned to the one who appeared to be in charge and asked, "Do you have a B band converter that goes inline from a satellite on a Direct TV receiver?" I couldn't have been more succinct in my question.

About the time I started my question the employee broke into the mother of all yawns. It was one of those giant yawns that is reminiscent of a hippo and a chimp where the mouth is cranked wide open, teeth exposed and slobber strings are seen connecting the upper teeth to the lower teeth. Then there is the pause, the sound of air passing, and then the watery eyes that follow from a massively satisfying yawn.

Frankly I know it was good for him but it pissed me off.

He had no idea what I just asked, something to do with a TV connection and pointed me toward the connectors. I said, "It is Direct TV" and he replied, "We only have Dish".

I swear I don't know how they stay in business.

A Great Week

I took this entire holiday week off and stayed home. This is the second time in 30 years that I've done this. No agenda, no heavy projects. Just relaxing at home and spending time with Gigi.

Gigi and I expected to be in Southport, NC for Thanksgiving week but in preparation of the RV and installation our new bed we both pulled our backs with me the worse of the two.

So we decided to stay home and had a quiet thanksgiving meal just the two of us. That was a first and it was wonderful.

I rented a walk behind leaf blower yesterday that I have for the entire weekend. Every so often I go out and fire it up and blow leaves for 30 minutes or so. This machine does the work of 10 men but it is not as precise as a hand blower. Today I'll finish the bulk leaf movement and begin the detailing then finish gain with the bulk bower.....all between naps.

The bed we installed is the 4th bed in 30 years of marriage and is a California king. This is an upgrade from our queen size bed. The new one is a beautiful Tommy Bahama four poster that fits my dreaming themes and it is damn comfortable with the new memory foam mattress. All new Tommy Bahama sheets and we are all set. Plus this new bed sits much lower and it is so easy to roll in or out.

My Jeep has sat for months. I usually keep the roof off all summer and throw a trap on it at night. But this year we had such a rainy season in August and September and then the weather became too cool for top down ride. So the Jeep has sat. I went out yesterday to fire it up and the battery was dead. Served me right for neglecting my jeep so.

I got it started and took Tanner out for a ride and bought a new tire for the Jeep. Now I have all new tires on the Jeep and had them all turned with the raised white lettering out for a change. It makes the Jeep look busier. Tanner is a great Jeep dog by the way.

I decided to stop by Auto-zone and have the battery tested. The service guy kept telling me about how "angry" my Jeep looked. This is good I suppose. The Jeep is my driving work of art.

The weather here has turned cold (freezing at night) so my thoughts turn to my tropical vacation in early February to St Croix. I dreamed I was there last night sitting naked at one of the open air bars. I am not a nudist but have this dream often. I remember Gigi leaning over and suggesting that I might want to put on something while I was at the table. I swear I didn't know I was naked until she mentioned it.

Today my Appalachian State University football team plays in the first round of the playoffs and I'll enjoy more fun and leaf blowing. It is Saturday....right?

Happy Thanksgiving!

McMansions and Meals

Over the past decade Gigi and I fought the urge to buy a McMansion. It seemed every community had them. They were personal palaces of what became the real estate glut.

Everyone it seemed was going out and buying $500,000 to $700,000 houses with the availability of low interest and easy credit. I was even told by a builder once, "You know the difference between a $500,000 house and a $700,000 house? About $60,000 of molding and marble."

But somehow we rationalized staying in our modest ranch home with 8 beautiful acres and being satisfied with what we had. Oh we had the discussions that questioned ourselves if we were fools to staying here.

One thing that stood out in these McMansion were the kitchens. My God.....the equipment, the storage, the prep area, the sinks all rivaled professional kitchens that I have seen in restaurants. Kitchens became showplaces but no one cooked.

Some of the best meals of my life came from Gigi's Grandmother in her tiny firetrap kitchen in northern Georgia. There was barely room for two people yet she made magnigfacant meals here. A free standing stove/oven, a refrigerator, an old porcelain single sink and an electric fry pan with barely enough counter space for a biscuit bowl.

Or a professional kitchen like The Pickled Greek in St Croix. There chef Aaron stands in the midst of grills, fryers, ovens with barely room to move in 125 degree heat and serves magnificent meals with passion.

Hell, my nephew and I crank out some pretty darn good meals standing on the dirt ground hovered over a stove, fryer, a few grills and an enthusiasm for cooking when we camp on Jekyll Island.

So as the rest of the country's McMansion kitchens go under water and revert back to the bank Gigi and I will be cooking in our modest kitchen a fantastic meal and I will wonder what the banks will do with all those fantastic kitchens.

Today I am thankful that I didn't over extend during the good times and what I have does me just fine.

Gigi's late step father once asked us in his way of giving advice, "How many toilets can a man sit on? How many beds can a man sleep in?"

It was his way of saying get what you need and no more. He never went broke either.

Blogging is So Last Year I Suppose

We had our annual Hunnicutt Thanksgiving in Durham this past weekend. We have done this for a number of years so that we can each have our own Thanksgiving at home or be surrounded by the loving in-laws Norman Rockwell style when the actual day arrives.

As usual my sister and I were in the kitchen catching up on the blogs we read. Many blogs we have in common, Ali, Zig, Teresa, Terri, Terry, and then there are many I read that she doesn't and many she reads that don't interest me.

One common thread we noticed is our regular bloggers who's lives we have watched from the outside, watched their children be born, leave home, or struggle in this economy have gradually stopped their daily posts and are down to a trickle. Some just throw in the towel.

I guess blogging is so last year.

My blog still continues to lay an egg almost daily that has to be deposited somewhere. So for now at least I'll be here until the egg laying dries up.

Tis The Season of Family and relatives

Most families have that one or two special relatives that my any standard are very dysfunctional at best or down right crazy. I had two as a child. No three. They were harmless like senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia but like him still loony tunes by any standard, yet able to function in society to some extent.

I loved them all because their deficiencies made them endearing to some extent and I knew after they were gone a generation of rational people like me were talking their place.

Guess what? I have discovered that as our generation ages a few special ones come forth and take the place of the crazies from our child hood. So now I have several obvious dysfunctional family members just like when I was a child.

Kind of makes me feel all warm and toasty like holidays of old.

As least now my generation is "on deck" and we are the next to take our dirt nap. You younger folks reading this look around and decide which one of you will step forth and be the dysfunctional family member for the next generation.

Time and Space

I awoke and glanced at the clock....it was 4 AM. Darn I think I'm awake.

I lay there trying to go back to sleep when an inner voice told me that I will die in my sleep and I will die soon.

This startled me and I looked at the clock and it was 5:30.

It is amazing to me how time can lapse like this and how the mind plays tricks with itself.

Needless to say I ain't dead....but that was so real.

Happy Wednesday.

Changes Going On


Gigi and I have been doing some home renovation and remodeling.
Fortunately we have found a talented contractor that is willing to do the work as we go because we are paying out of pocket as we go.

Our home is a modest 3 bedroom two bath ranch built 35 years ago. Over the years we have done a few interior upgrades like the kitchen and baths and flooring. Even these remodels are getting a bit outdated.

The exterior of our home is t-111 which is glorified plywood with fake board joints sawn into the wood to make it look a bit more appealing. You may recognise this exterior from any old lake house you stayed at during camp as a child.

Our front had a major exterior design flaw that allowed water from the roof to baste the house when it rained and therefore slowly rot a portion of the front exterior.

The first thing we did was get all the front windows replaced in the affected area with modern efficient triple pane super duper windows. We love them. I could feel the change immediately not only from air quality but also noise. Then the roof line was altered and all the rotten wood was replaced and then the new exterior was applied.

We chose the same exterior as our guest house which is a coastal grade vinyl shake shingle. These are very thick and high quality and should out last us.

We then carried the exterior down the side and replace the two windows in the master bedroom. All of this came in slightly over budget and we were broke for construction but the problem was fixed.

Next we found a great deal to replace the old wooden garage door with a modern steel clad insulated door that had a carriage house exterior design. This custom item is on order and is paid for including
installation.

Now we are about to start a major change in the front which will enclose out 4X34 foot porch into living area and a 10 foot by 34 country porch will be added. This space is on the north side so it will be cool in the summer and it is real outdoor living space compared to the ledge out there now. An additional 4 feet in the interior will be significant as will the new front door, foyer, and windows. The porch will have paddle fans and a painted tongue in groove deck painted battleship gray. The new exterior will carry completely across the front and around the garage. From the street the home will look completely different.

The new living space will have pine floors instead of carpet. I am promised a man portion of the new larger room for my wide screen TV and the other sitting area will be girly for tea parties and pillow fights.

Finally the last phase will be tying the old house into our guest house. I am not sure when this will happen and how much, but it will happen after I digest financially the changes we have made now.




Why Hurry So?

Why did I used to think 5 minutes was such a long time?

In five minutes I can have a wonderful boiled egg and toast for breakfast. Or a delicious bowl of old fashioned Quaker Oats. They are much better than the instant and still I have to wait 5 minutes for the water to boil.

I gave up years ago fixing my own breakfast because it was too much trouble and took too long.

What did I do with all those saved five minutes? I sat in line at McDonald and bought shitty food at $4 a pop.

I can buy a gallon of oats for $3.50 and eat with my family. Or a dozen "chicken butt never touched a cage" organic eggs.

Oooo! My eggs timer just went off.

I'm off to a flight to Philly this morning with a proper breakfast.

Video Time

The Blood Sports...Not Much of A Fan

I bought my new notebook PC on Friday and I have spent some time now with Windows 7. It works fine but is unfamiliar. There is no "Windows Classic" setting so I'm turning new ground and settling in. It will take a while before I have my iTunes configured and all the old stuff moved from my dying PC.

I decided not to load Microsoft Office but opted for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint readers that I can read and print from and I will continue to use the free Google documents.

On Saturday I went to an Appalachian State Football game in Boone, NC. The college football experience is so different from the professional football experience. It was a lot of fun and our team won. Next time I'm taking the grill. Eating grocery store prepared deli food from plastic trays seems wrong to me. There must be fresh meat, smoke and fire for a proper tailgate party.

We are in the season of the blood sports here in North Carolina. The booming sound of rifle fire sends my dogs running for cover.

Yesterday I saw a heaping mound of internal organs in someones yard. I assume it was a prank and they were deer parts.

Personalty I don't get hunting but don't make a bid deal about those that do enjoy it. It seems sad to shoot a majestic animal for fun and then complain that the meat is dry.

I do enjoy fishing to some extent but I feel sorry for the fish I catch. I usually release what I catch.

I need some Saint Croix Heat

My notebook PC of almost 4 years is dying. I'm afraid it will take a mother board which the part alone refurbished is $475. So for now I type away on a pink screen, sometimes green, sometimes normal hoping it will last until I get a new PC.

In good news.....I entered a photo contest that was open to the entire planet and I came in second! I'll be collecting my winnings in the form of Miss Anna's Hot Sauce. See the winner below.

I got busted yesterday by a dear friend and reader of my blog and occasional Facebooker. I was bitchin' about winter on Facebook yet resolved on my blog not to bitch about winter. Technically I was okay because I didn't bitch on my blog but failed in spirit. I guess it would depend on what the definition of "is" is.

As far as this blog is concerned I am in total love of the polar season.....who am I kidding? Oh shit. Three flu infections this season between the two of us and it is cold as Ned's ass outside.

92 days 'til Saint Croix.

Tanner

The border collie fairy left this at my doorstep.

Jimmi Cawda Flowchart

Click to Enlarge

Peaches 1996-2009

Yesterday we decided it was time to give up the fight and we euthinized Peaches. She was quite alert but her body was failing. I have done this enough where I can say my vet did a good job. Yet it never gets easy. We shed a lot of tears. I will miss her very much.

So that leaves me with 5 border collies, Haley, Cedie, Abby, Duke and Tanner. Oh I haven't mentioned Tanner yet have I?

Somewhere in the fog of my fever last week Gigi had gone to the vets to pick up some more medicine for Peaches. When Gigi returned she then came to my bedside and set this small male border collie beside me.

"His name is Tanner", she said. "I tell you more when you feel better."

Turns out Tanner is a 2 1/2 year old tri color male border collie. He is sweet, obedient, mostly house broken and a fun guy.

His owner had taken Tanner to his vet and demanded that he be euthinized because he was crazy. His vet refused. He took Tanner to my vet and demanded he be euthinized and my vet refused and took the dog. My vet knew Gigi.

So for now Tanner is part of our family.

Border collies may seem crazy if you don't know the breed. They are driven herd animals. They must have a job.

So we adjust now to life without Peaches....our first border collie.

What Is Next?

Let stop and talk about this fellow for a moment because I didn't get the memo.

This looks like a fine healthy young man who is more devoted to his jitter juice than say beer and chicken wings. He looks fit. It looks like he has a passion for the IT arts...and he is organised and neat. And one could assume he is concerned for his cranium because he has a bandanna wrapped around his head.

When I was a kid guys just didn't wear hats. John F. Kennedy freed us from hats....and tie clips and men were grateful. This was a simpler time when the only people with tattoos were alcoholic retired navy men.

Hair was a wonderful statement. It could blow in the breeze and be cut in whatever way suited the owner.

Gradually baseball caps became vogue and all the pre-Kennedy era rules about wearing hats fell like the Berlin Wall. Guys wore hats indoors out doors at the dinner table whatever. Bald guys took to hats like a fat kid does to a tee shirt at a swimming pool.

Soon the goatee made it's appearance and all guys looked pretty much alike.

I was caught up in my own decade of fashion so I watched this unfold from the sidelines.

Then someone found an old pancake box and thought that a handkerchief tired on their head would set them apart. Certainly an old rag would look better that hair or a ball cap.

Personally I don't get this unless maybe it is spring cleaning time or perhaps one is in treatment for head lice.

But it is a great country so wear your rag.

What's for breakfast?

Will Tiny Tim Walk Again?

A beginning to Cedie's wheel chair. It needs adjustment, gluing, fitting, testing and so forth.

So far Cedie thinks I am some pervert chasing her around for measurements.

This might be all I can do today. I'm still getting well.

A Virus Hack

Today I am the empty shell of where just 24 hours ago a great battle for control of my body raged. I am sore, weak, and still have a persistent but productive cough. Oh what a flu it may have been but I had a flu hack.

At the first sign of confirmed flu I headed to a doctor. For me a fever is the moment of truth confirming flu, assuming I don't have infected sore elsewhere on my body. The fever hit in the night with chills.

In the morning I headed to the local clinic affiliated with my physician and hospital group. I was seeking a medical confirmation of my diagnosis and some Tamiflu. The nurse swabbed my nose and ran the test. The Tamiflu was prescribed.

It seems that researchers have found a way to hack the flu virus and control it's growth in the host body. The Tamiflu is a drug that slows the spread of influenza (flu) virus between cells in the body by stopping the new virus from chemically cutting ties with its host cell.

So my body recovers more quickly than I expected.

They key is to get this drug at the onset or it does no good.

The day continued as usual with fever, chills, fever, chills and lots of sleep. Then the second night I had the sweats. I sweat and sweat with indicates in the 1956 model that I am coming out of a fever.

I wake up day three and feel much better but pee basketball orange. I text a nurse in Canada and he said that it should be orange.

So I'm still taking Tamiflu. I still have flu in me I suppose but I feel much better. What would have been a week event is over in days.

Now I can take Gigi to the doctor this morning because she is sick as hell.

Da Flu

I have h1n1 flu. I am so sore everywhere. I am taking Tamaflu and a most wonderful controlled cough syrup with inhaler. Back to bed.

Dog Wheel Chair

I'm going to take a stab at building a dog wheel chair. The one's I see online are more than $500. I think I can build one.

You see my girl Cedie who has just one back leg also has epilepsy. She takes a drug that controls her seizures but one of the side effects is that it can cause weakness in hind legs of dogs.

Cedie has a difficult time now standing up and walking. I help her up in the morning and she walks fine. But try and get up again and she ends up dragging her hind quarters around.

I think with some old dog harnesses, some PVC pipe, velcro, lawnmower wheels, that I can build her an assist that will allow her to run again. Her front paws and arms are strong.

I'll let you know how this goes. If anyone has ideas or suggestions please let me know.

Cedie is a good sport. I think she'll take right to it.

This Made Me Think

Yesterday was another home game and another
humiliating loss. Thankfully NFL football is more than just the game so I'll pass on my observations from yesterday.

Sunday we had a 4 PM game rather
than the preferred and usual 1 PM start time.

Wreggie's Football Postulate 1: The later
the start time the more alcohol is ingested prior to the game.

We set up early so that we
could watch the 1 PM games in TV and leisurely cook brats and burgers.

At Carolina Panther Games
there is no stadium parking lot. Throughout a radius of the stadium small parking lots normally used by weekday commuters
become small cities. Each parking lot is equipped with two or more porta-jons and one must pay anywhere from $15 to $40 for the right to park here for one game.

This year someone passes out large yellow plastic bags to claim recyclables. Then after a few hours someone may politely ask if they can dig through your bag in search of aluminum.

So gradually the parking lots fill with cars, people, grills, smoke, music, and laughter. Big spreads of food are prepared as if we are the ones about to expend energy in a few hours.

Then about 1 hour before game time the small city begins to disassemble and is packed away. Then 75,000 people descend on the stadium.

Scattered among the three levels are abundant restrooms where men go to eliminate beer. The men's room near my seats has maybe 30 urinals and 4 stalls. All station run about 10 men deep. So at any time there is a big cinder block room with well over 300 men waiting for their turn. There are many rooms like this all over the stadium.

In the bathroom there is an overhead speaker system broadcasting the game with fans of both side yelling for their team. There is a lot of joking and yelling from some that have been over served.

Yesterday not once but twice I saw a small girl, different girl each time in the men's room. They looked to be about 4 years old, maybe younger. They looked kind of horrified at what they were witnessing. They were so small that they went mostly unnoticed. Each was with their father who had to go.

If a guy takes his his little daughter to a game then I guess there is no other alternative if either has to "go" except to walk in the men's room.

I just hope there is no lasting damage to the young ones witnessing the event.

Dress for whatever

I have written in the past about scrubs and the medical profession. How nice to wear PJ's to work.

When I was in St Croix last I had the occasion to be around chef Aaron of The Pickled Greek. He is serious in the kitchen and wears chef jammies.

Yes apparently unbeknown to me there are chef scrubs out there.

I dress casual for my industry and rarely wear a suit. I did wear a suit one week ago and noticed how differently people treated me.

Same old Wreggie but now I got more attention and "yes sirs" while wearing a suit.

Funny on a side note somewhere about five years ago I became Mr. Hunnicutt and was no longer referred to by my first name. This is mainly with vendors I trade with like my laundry guy, my grocery store and of course staff at my club.

Today I shall be in a football jersey and shorts attending a game in Charlotte and they'll call me Wreg....or shithead.

Fish

I was reading this morning on my blog fiends site about her on again off again affair with Tilapia. Basically she ate Tilapia because if didn't taste like fish until she read the horrid conditions that most Tilapia grow in. They are bottom feeders. Now she is no longer a Tilapia eater.

I love fish. I expect fish to taste like fish. I avoid tasteless fish like Tilapia and Mahi which are everyone's fish of the day because they are tasteless.

Any taste in the above mentioned fish is derived form blackening, a sauce, or frying. Otherwise one is eating white bulk.

Thursday I met my match. My friend insisted we go to a sushi bar for lunch. I like these places fine but I don't particularly like eating with sticks and I am never sure what I am eating so I try it all. Somewhere in the mix I swear I ate some slightly bad carp. I belched strong fish the rest of the day and into the evening.

Ideally I like salt water fish but make exception for fresh water trout and crappy. Salmon ranks high for me. I can it it daily but tuna moves down the scale. I prefer salmon over tuna by a long shot.

I like most fish you can catch in the surf here in NC, yes even spots and croakers.

But I draw the line at bottom fish like catfish and grouper. I prefer caught in the wild to farm raised. I love most any crustacean or shellfish or fish with no skeleton like squid.

And finally give me shrimp and oysters and scallops until I drop.

I'll Shut Up

It is no secret that I hate winter.

Just yesterday my friend Ty openly declared he hated long shadows. His voice held fear and panic of pending doom. I knew what he was talking about.

On the other hand I have dear friends that love the cold and darkness of winter. Just now they are seemingly coming to life.

They are all excited about Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, snow or driving to the mountains to see snow, skiing, open fires and whatever cold lovers do during this period of depression and gloom.

As a child I loved this stuff too. Somewhere the darkness began to effect my mood and the cold started hurting my skin and bones.

I have learned to cope. I stay mentally on vacation on an island.

This year I promise not to gripe about what I can't change.