Rambling On, And On…

After my rambles yesterday, we sat at home trying to be cool and continue to observe energy conservation to avoid rolling brown or black outs (i don’t guess you can have a “white out” except in company of the not so polite of which i’ve been included for a large portion of my life). Between three and nine post meridiem on a rare day where the thermometer reached 101, Southwest corner residents were urged to keep the air conditioning up to 78: no problem for us as we only have a small portable one which we turned off, to minimize water usage because of the power required to run the pumps, keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed (hmm, wonder who leaves them open?), turn off pool filters (again no problem: we don’t have a pool), and turning off all unnecessary lights off: guilty as we left several on to read and walk safely.

We never really got hot. Of course, we weren’t too cool either.

We were a bit worried about wildfires, and one lit off about three yesterday afternoon. Jatapul Valley is about twenty miles northeast from us. As i write, the “Valley Fire” has burned 4,000 acres with no containment yet, primarily due to the rough hill, mountain, and dry terrain makes access difficult, especially in heat reaching well over 100 degrees in that neck of the woods. Mount Miguel blocked my view from seeing flames reaching 80-feet high yesterday, but i saw plenty of smoke, dark menacing clouds rising above the crest of my Mount Miguel.

We are safe for now. The winds are blowing north to northeast, away from us. Our home is situated where a wildfire would have to be weird and huge to get to us. Nearly all of these conflagrations start in the east and move westward. It would take some powerful gymnastics for embers to leap from the east to our home due to all of the houses and infrastructure between us and a fire from that direction. We have open space, high desert vegetation (a culprit to abetting these fires) to the west but any fire would have to do some very strange things to get to our property. It could happen, but it’s not likely.

Today is a repeat of yesterday, supposedly cooling down will begin late this evening. Fire season is upon us.

A danger to put up with in the Southwest corner, and a lot of California.

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While in this keep-cool stage, Maureen found a Netflix movie last night. i was reading and writing but stopped to watch. The Way brothers directed the documentary, “The Battered Bastards of Baseball,” the story of how Bing Russell, an actor known mostly for his “Bonanza” role as Deputy Sheriff Clem Foster and the father of Kurt Russell, created the Portland Mavericks, the only independent baseball team in the country at the time (1970’s).

The story is captivating on its own. i kept shaking my head as it kept demonstrating the greed and pomposity of Major League baseball, something i’ve been ranting about for several years.

It is also heartwarming with a sad ending and then a good victory before the actual conclusion. i won’t divulge too much here because i think all of you should watch it. In addition to bolstering my complaints about MLB, it just flat made me feel good, it actually happened. It also is pretty much a commentary on how we operate today in our country.

However, i will point out the Sonoma Stompers (wine country, get the name?) are in the mold of the Mavericks. i sure wish i was watching them today with Alan Hicks and our score cards.

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To get some exercise and not melt on the road, i went for my run/walk a.k.a. fartlek (i love that name) early this morning. It was pleasant. But it also made me scratch my head.

The neighborhood watch bunch decided to run a contest for the area’s most beautiful yard. They have put up signs in the yards of “contenders” for the final award at the end of the month. We were already aghast when a home on our cul de sac sported a “contender” sign. We have always considered it garish and looking fake.

Then on my journey this morning, i took stock of the contenders. At least 90% of the contenders sport artificial turf: you know, fake grass. Those without the fake stuff boast plants not native to the area and certainly not in keeping with water conservation. There are no contenders with native plants or drought tolerant (called “xeriscape” around here) landscapes.

Now we happen to have drought tolerant landscape. i think it’s beautiful, naturally beautiful. i really don’t have any beef about fake grass, it is a good way to conserve water (and mowing). But to me, it still looks fake.

i’m just amazed that these judges think fake is beautiful. It seems to be the wave of taste today in many things.

Guess i don’t fit in, but if they had put a “contender” sign on our yard, it would not likely last more than a couple of minutes.

Curmudgeons rule, at least among some old folks.

And i is one.

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