No Fly Zone

I have a favorite “Get Fuzzy” cartoon.  You have to imagine that Bucky Cat is The Princess when you read it.  Here’s the link:  Get Fuzzy.  Of course, I’m the dog.  I thought of this cartoon again recently as The Princess was once again trying to convince me to whiten my teeth.  Of course she’s trying to shift the attention away from the fact that in the month of August she had three teeth pulled and  a bit of gum surgery.  I’m telling you, just in “tooth fairy”  payments alone that woman is bankrupting me.  That reminds me of a little story from Andy’s youth.  He was always a sharp little bugger.  He was at that age when his baby teeth were dropping like acorns from an oak tree.  We were putting him to bed one night, once again with a tooth under the pillow, and he said, “There  really isn’t a tooth fairy is there?  He caught me off guard, and not being prepared, I admitted that, no, there was no such thing, not unless you named my wallet, Tooth Fairy. 

We said goodnight, but before we could get out of the room he made the next logical jump and said, “And I suppose there’s really no Santa Clause either?  And like that, the innocence of childhood was over.  I remember feeling a bit sad that those sweet days when I could feed him any load of BS and he’d believe it were over, but at the same time, I was relieved.  First, we’d raised him right, he’s a real skeptic.  And second, finally that fat old man in the red suit would stop getting all the credit for the Christmas presents.

The Princess and  I have created a “monster.”  That’s if you can call a hummingbird a monster.  We’ve always had hummingbirds come to the flowers on our deck, so this year we thought maybe we could attract even more if we put up a feeder.  Off to Home “Despot,” hung the feeder, made the sugar-water and voila, we were in business.  It was on the second day that all hell broke loose out on the deck.  Hummers were swooping around chasing each other like fighter pilots.  They’d approach the feeder, spread their tail feathers and “peep” ferociously (if that’s possible).  If you sat out there you could actually hear the hummers’ feathers ruffle as they hit each other in mid-air.  It was pretty cool to watch. 

But after several days we began to notice fewer skirmishes and fewer hummers.  The level of the sugar-water went down much more slowly, and finally we were left with just one hummer.  Wow, so this is how it works, you know, survival of the fittest.  He (or she) is challenged occasionally, but he’s  set-up a pretty effective “no fly zone” covering an area within about a fifty foot circle.  I’m mean, what would you do if you’d found say, the eternal bowl of cashews?  You’d protect that bowl baby!  He enforces the nfz by darting out of the nearest maple tree, or from a little perch right near the feeder and chasing the interlopers away.  Now, after a couple of weeks we’ve noticed that this little “alpha” hummer is not so little anymore.  That’s right, he’s becoming a little “porker.”  A lot of lessons to be learned here, don’t you think? 

This reminds me a lot of the story one of my Grandma’s used to tell.  The story was all about a little boy who’d sneak into a neighbor’s house through the basement window and eat warm pancakes that had been left out in the kitchen.  After each visit, the boy would retreat back through the window.  The neighbor couldn’t figure out what was going on, but swore someday he’d catch the culprit and make him pay dearly for his misdeeds.  Somehow the boy eluded the neighbor over and over again and eventually after eating hundreds of pancakes he started getting quite fat.  He got his comeuppance one day when the neighbor finally caught him eating the pancakes.  The boy ran for the basement, dove at the window and to his dismay became stuck.  This is the point in the story where depending on how much time grandma had and what kind of mood she was in she could either have the boy escape, or meet some hideous, tragic end, or escape and return again…and then reach the tragic end, or, well you get the idea.  Things eventually don’t turn out well at all for the little boy.  This is why little kids love their grandmas?

Of course for our hummer, that basement window is called migration.  We’re seeing our fat little hummer trying to migrate south, alone, because he has no friends and very slowly, because he’s dragging that fat little belly along.   He might make it as far as South Carolina, and freeze his ample buns off all.  Let that be a lesson to all of you!

I finished painting the right front end and the right front wheel, so check these photos out.

Then too, I made a little addition to the Pony’s engine.  I needed a place where I could drain the coolant, because the drain the Pony was born with was (naturally) frozen.  The drain is circled in yellow in the photo below.

The idiotic brother suggested that I drill a hole near where the current drain is, tap it, and then insert a threaded plug that I can just unscrew whenever I need to drain the engine.  The series of shots that follow show coolant draining from the freshly drilled pilot hole, then the tapping of the 11/32 inch hole with an 1/8 inch pipe tap, and finally, the new drain plug inserted.

Like I’ve done all my life, I put this daunting task off for a long time.  I’m such a “fraidy cat.”  But then as I have also often found, when I got right down to it, it wasn’t bad at all.  Got any holes you need threaded?

Moving on.  I’m about to venture into a new area.  And I want you to know that I’m doing this for you, my dear readers.  Through one of my extra curricular activities, I made the acquaintance of a doctor that works at UNC.  Turns out that among other things, he conducts clinical trials involving the environment, specifically the air we breathe and its effects on our health.  He noted what a “miracle of health” I am for my age and suggested that I might be a candidate for a clinical study they are conducting.  I’m going to try to give you as brief a description of the study as I can.

It has been observed for sometime that following periods of unusually high levels of pollution, seniors with compromised health start “dropping like flies.”  So, what this study will do is subject a number of idiots like me to high doses of ozone to see if it’s the ozone that’s killing these people.  So, yes, just as some fun for my readers, I’m going to let them see if they can kill me with ozone.  I know, I know, you’re probably thinking, “Hey, Pony boy, where’s that healthy skepticism you taught your son.  Hmmm, guess that skips a generation.   Anyway, over the next few months I’ll be giving you regular updates as the study progresses.  Let’s all hope that I live to include this little venture in the next segment of…”Things That Could Have Killed Me.”

Pray for me, and thanks for reading.


3 responses to “No Fly Zone

  1. WOW!! There is so much to comment on today! On the financial portion of the news this morning, they talked about just how much the Tooth Fairy is shelling out these days. Apparently some kids are getting $20 a tooth. Think it’s too late for me to get some extra money? They didn’t specify if they had to be your original teeth or teeth you purchased but I guess if I sell the ones I bought, I probably won’t break even. Love the Get Fuzzy cartoons. When we were at 1500 Market, I use to cut them out and tape them around my desk (ah the good ole days). Brucie, I am not so sure about this Ozone testing thingy…. You will do that but won’t bleach your teeth? YIKES!! Love to you and Cindy!

  2. Billy Vollenweider

    I am not sure how smart the ozone testing guinea pig is. I have read reports that too much ozone is a bad thing. Personally, I think I would pass.

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