The Hit man

Follow up – we now have fire extinguishers in both cars and the truck. Lesson learned.

Had a funny one the other day at Big Rig. We were checking out and the owner was working the register. I laid out my AMX card and he looked it over carefully then said to me “are you a hit man or something”. Very straight face. I looked at him like what did you say, and he says “your card says Terminal Connexions and I wondered what that was”. I heard that more than a few times in Utah but that was the first time in maybe 10 years. I gave him the story but he didn’t have a clue what a computer terminal was. Don’t know whether I mentioned it before but I learned a while back that since that card is a Corporate card, it doesn’t show up when someone calls for a credit check. When we refinanced to take advantage of these low interest rates, the bank showed us our credit scores and I asked exactly what went into the numbers, mine was a bit lower than Nancy’s. They said the reason was that she had some credit cards and I didn’t. I said I had an AMX that went back about 25 years and I broke it out to show her. She looked at it and said that wouldn’t show on a credit check since it was a corporate card. Interestingly my VISA didn’t show either – had that one for at least as long as the AMX. That one is attached to my Merrill Lynch account so it too is hidden from the credit check folks. Of course they were all over Nancy’s Kohl’s and Penney’s cards and made her credit rating a bit higher than mine. Weird.

Think we’re going to have another go at the chickens. Harley is beefing up the pen and is determined not to let the raccoons get the better of him. Before the last guys were converted to ‘coon food, I had brought up a few outer leaves from the Chinese cabbage to try as chicken feed. According to Harley they went crazy for it. I would guess they’d deal with old lettuce the same way so when I was talking about converting lettuce to eggs, this puts an entirely different spin on it. Too bad I don’t still tie trout flies.

Did something totally new to that cauliflower shown in the previous post. Leaving it whole, I spread some butter on it, slathered it with barbecue sauce, wrapped it all up in aluminum foil and put it on the grill alongside a whole chicken. I guesstimated 45 minutes for the cauliflower and an hour fifteen for the chicken. Perfectly timed and tasty. To me, cauliflower has very little flavor on it’s own so you can dress it up lots of ways. When people say they love cauliflower I ask them how they fix it and it’s usually drenched in cheese – so I know they love cheese.

Fire in the hole

Voting proved to be quite exciting. We drove up to the place, voted, stopped at the Post Office on the way back and then stopped at home for Nancy to load the car with some quilting stuff. I was in the house when I heard this screaming and yelling for me to hurry. I came out and saw smoke billowing out from under the hood of the car. I popped the hood and saw flames, big time. While Nancy was hunting for a fire extinguisher, never found, I started beating it out with a floor mat and saw right away that it was a squirrel nest burning. Based on that I turned the hose on and quickly extinguished it. Nothing was really burning other than the nest itself so a catastrophe was averted. Actually this is the third time we’ve had a nest built under the hood of one of the vehicles. On both other occasions I spotted it when checking the oil – the first was on a trip to Missouri and we had probably driven 1000 miles before spotting it. So we’ve been very lucky and need to start checking more frequently. We drive the car almost every day, yesterday for sure, and it probably takes days to complete a nest so really this particular nest could have been there for a few weeks – since the last time I checked the oil. I probably need to start patrolling the car port area with the pellet gun and teach these critters some respect.

While on the vote, in the end a telephone call pushed me over the edge. I answered the phone and there was Chuck Norris, aka Walker Texas Ranger, on the other end. Turns out he and his wife are both supporting Newt. I can’t begin to tell you how many hours I spent with Tommy and Simon watching Walker reruns when they were just little guys, so if he’s supporting Newt……………………

The spinach is doing exceptionally well this year – the first time. The first couple of years it was a total disaster, independent of the variety. Then last year I tried a heritage variety, Bloomsdale, and it did fairly well – not incredible, but certainly better. This year I was out of that seed and went back to a variety (Space) I had from year one. I had my doubts because the seed was old and because it was a variety that had failed before. This time it performed well – so well that I extracted about 20 seedlings and put them in cups for a friend to grow. That was 6 weeks ago and I’m picking abundantly right now so I gave him a call to see if he was picking also. None of his spinach made it but all the lettuce, cabbage, and broccoli did. I remember him showing me the spot he intended to plant and thinking that the soil looked sandy and exactly how mine looked a few years back. So that cements it that my spinach problems were soil related – spinach just doesn’t do sandy soil but goes gangbusters in heavily composted soil.

The beets shown are the latest attempt using a different variety. Even though this is an improvement over previous attempts, I’m not content with the roots – more than half had totally wimpy roots. You can see that the greens are beautiful and we have plenty of folks that want those so all is not lost – actually more folks down here eat the greens and pitch the roots. I’ve eaten some very young leaves raw in salads but never as a cooked green. Based on the dark green and red color, they must be loaded with iron. My thoughts now are that what’s missing in the soil for really nice roots is Phosphorous. The nice tops say there is plenty of nitrogen so I’m going to switch from an 8-2-8 fertilizer to a 10-10-10 blend – the middle 10 is phosphorous . I’m thinking either blood meal or bone meal is high in phosphorous and will research that further. Just threw in the cauliflower picture to balance the page.