Fire, works

Looking back toward ’Burque from just beyond last month’s 5-acre blaze.

Yesterday Herself and I hiked up to the site of last month’s smallish foothills fire and pressed on a bit further for a peek at some of the as-yet-unburnt open space beyond.

It’s pretty up there. Great spot for young miscreants to engage in unsupervised experimentation with this, that, and the other. That’s what we would’ve used it for when I was a teenager possessed by various devils, anyway.

The Voodoo Nakisi parked along one of the zillions of trails in Bibleburg’s Palmer Park, circa 2013.

Our spot was Palmer Park, in Bibleburg. We called it “The Bluffs,” and it was where we went to act the fool, on foot, aboard bicycles, and finally in cars.

Never set the place ablaze, though. Not that I recall, anyway.

There’s a ton of short hikes like Sunset Canyon here in the foothills, and don’t I wish I had explored a few of them before FUBARing my right ankle, because there is generally a bit of scrambling involved.

The idea of finding myself sprawled in some rock garden with a freshly rebroken ankle, awaiting a visit from some carnivore that is decidedly not an EMT, is not my idea of a good time.

Back at El Rancho Pendejo we lunched on some leftover chicken chili with some blue corn ships and some grated Irish cheddar on a bed of rice.

Dinner was also a rerun, a second round of faux pizza I cobbled together using two Vicolo corn-meal crusts topped with some leftover pasta sauce (kind of a New Mexican arrabbiata), grated mozzarella and Parmigiano Reggiano, and chopped Applegate sweet Italian chicken sausage.

We’ve been trying to watch “Dark,” which is engrossing in a “Stranger Things” meets “Lost” kind of way, but it’s just too .. well, too dark for us at the moment.

Getting lit for the Fourth.

So instead we had a go at “The Florida Project,” a quirky little slice-of-odd-life kind of film that will feel familiar to anyone who’s ever stayed the night in a sketchy tourist-town motel and caught a glimpse of the regulars who are definitely not there for the fun of it.

As H.I. observes in “Raising Arizona,” it ain’t “Ozzie and Harriet.”

The evening’s entertainment concluded with the annual fireworks extravaganza put on by our neighbors to the west, who’ve been bringing the boom for their kids and everyone else’s for a couple decades now.

It was a socially distant version of their usual Fourth of July celebration. Also not exactly “Ozzie and Harriet,” but nevertheless a welcome reminder that life, quirky as it is, goes on.

Ooooooh … ahhhhhhhhh. …


34 Responses to “Fire, works”

  1. carl duellman Says:

    i guess i’ll have to watch ‘the florida project’. i spent my community college years in kissimmee. it makes my stomach hurt just remembering it. ugh.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      It was time well spent. Willem Dafoe was the only dude in it that I knew, and I thought everyone was killer. It’s rare when the adults and kids in a flick all seem to be real people and not just pencil sketches.

  2. Pat O'Brien Says:

    Went to our friend’s house (double bubble baby just like in NZ) to eat hamburgers and grilled corn on the cob. First beef I have eaten in two years. Anyway, we gave dark movies the ole heave ho and watched “Eddie The Eagle.” I think Jens Voigt wears Eddie The Eagle pajamas.

    • Hurben Says:

      GiDay Pat, we’ve moved beyond bubbles & life is almost back to what passes for normal in these times.

      21 active cases, all returning residents & all returnees face a compulsory 14 day quarantine period in an isolation venue. (Official stats here.)

      I normally do a 4th of July BBQ in honour of my years working for a Chicago based software house but not this year, I’m not sure why but things felt different, so it was Greek Lamb chops, smashed roast potatoes & home grown broccoli & cauliflower cheese bake.

      We’re also facing an election in November & unless things seriously turn to shit I expect Jacinda to romp home.

      Take care out there y’all

    • Hurben Says:

      Also, another Kiwi Covid 19 initiative:

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Ooo, that July 4 meal sounds good. Now I have another reason to want to move to New Zealand. Hurben, I promise to leave all my cooties at home, and I’m on the dole, so I won’t take anyone’s job, assuming anyone would want to hire me, which is a hell of an assumption when you consider it, assuming anyone would.

    • Pat O’Brien Says:

      Good day to you Hurben! I haven’t been pulling up NZ news lately, so I am unaware of the politics there. I will fix that today. But, Jacinda seems to have the kind of leadership that is lacking most other places in the world, especially here. I assume those sandal tan lines are gone by now. I would work on my own this week, but it’s too bloody hot! We hit 103 yesterday at 4700 feet above sea level at my joint. Tucson are Phoenix are just, well forget about being outside after 8AM or before 6 PM. Are you doing any riding?

      • Hurben Says:

        Hi Pat, during lockdown I put in a lot of miles on the wind trainer because there weren’t any other distractions, since they’ve lifted, not so much. However I better get my fat arse into gear as the annual Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge is coming up in November & it’ll be a pain fest without some training.

  3. Dale Says:

    I just don’t know how to reply to this story.

    • khal spencer Says:

      I love to live in America!

    • Pat O'Brien Says:

      That’s what the dumpster wants to see, an armed conflict, you know, a firefight between idiots. Then he can retweet the video and issue the presidential pardons to anyone arrested. I bet that gets some of the boycotting advertisers back to facebook. When will people realize that using these so called social media platforms that they are subsidizing this cancer? What would trolls and other stupid people do if they had no audience? Disappear is what. “Give evil nothing to oppose and it disappears all by itself.” Tao te Ching – translation by Stephen Mitchell

      • khal spencer Says:

        Absolutely. Although they did it before with pamphlets, meetings, and word of mouth. Example, the left v the right in Weimar Germany.

        But you are spot on. Social media makes it so easy to rile up these eejits at the drop of a tweet. And we know what Larry’s wife says.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        Where there’s a will, there’s a way. Dudes in prison fly “kites” to each other. You want to get some word out, there’s always some means of transmission.

        The social-media swamp is particularly odious, but then so is any comments section. Anonymity greases the skids. People will say things online that would earn them one right between the horns in MeatWorld®.

        The Stupid was strong in this Gettysburg crowd, though. These pendejos are easier to spin up than a 24×36 on a 12 percent descent.

        • Shawn Duke'nit out in the Gorge Says:

          Ooo. A 24×36 down a 12 percent grade would be scary. Especially if it was on a fixed gear.

          I wonder if John Wayne would have “gotten” riled up by social media. “Well pilgrim, it looks like Susie on twitter says there’s a bunch of wild hooligans over at the memorial that we need to go deal with…. Damn Commies any way.”

      • Pat O’Brien Says:

        Social media requires nothing other than a device, an internet connection, and a few minutes. Absolutely perfect deceit and bullshit amplifiers is what social media sites are. A push of a key or screen and you cover the world with shit and then the algorithms massage and direct the shit to willing consumers of all things fecal. And zuck makes another million for creating nothing and lies to your face about fixing privacy and hateful content issues; he’s been shucking and jiving on that for years. Most knowledgeable IT types do not use these sites because of serious privacy concerns. Sorry for the rant.

  4. khal spencer Says:

    Sat in the back yard eating dinner and sipping wine while watching nearby folks light up the sky.

  5. SAO’ Says:

    Interesting signs popped up in our neighborhood this weekend.

    PETS and VETS

    What do they have in common?

    Neither are fans of your illegal fireworks.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      These were all legal, just little spinners, flamers, and pooters … but a neighbor said you can buy the real deal over near Moriarty. And from the sound of it, plenty of people did.

      Ride around the ’hood the day after the Fourth and you’ll see all manner of explosive detritus scattered along the roadway.

      • khal spencer Says:

        There were some pretty serious aerials being launched out our way. Looked like it was coming from the area of the dog park or somewhere. If only I had a few tracer rounds…just kidding.

  6. Ira Says:

  7. katholoch Says:

    I have a cooking suggestion–tomato paste mixed with salt, olive oil, garlic, and oregano is a lot tastier than pasta sauce (more concentrated and thicker).

    As for your ankle, I don’t think I broke my ankle, but I did have a terrible sprain once (black and blue for a month or more? Limping for 2-3 months?). I did lots of exercise spelling the alphabet with my foot and then yoga (one legged balance poses) and my ankle has never been better. I wasn’t sure if it would ever be right again, but time and targeted strengthening really helped. Don’t give up!

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Thanks, K, I’ll give that sauce a try. This pasta sauce of mine thickens up some in the cooking, but it’s not what you’d call a classic pizza topping. It uses olive oil, minced garlic, onions, and jalapeño, crushed Italian tomatoes, dried red chile flakes, and chopped black olives. I make a big batch and after a couple servings over pasta we’re both ready for something else.

      As for the ankle, I’ve been stretching and spelling the alphabet, and it’s definitely getting better by inches, but I still don’t entirely trust it while riding singletrack on a ’cross bike or bouldering around some narrow canyon. And I’m trying very, very hard to not start running again.

      • khal spencer Says:

        I did a Jones Fracture in July of 2016. Had no idea I broke it and thought it was sprained. Next morning my foot looked like a watermelon.

        X-rays showed the fracture and I was in a boot cast for six weeks and then eight weeks rest while I was recovering from shoulder surgery. I resumed activities in January-February of 2017. No recurrence. At least not yet.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        O, lawd, it’s hell getting old, until you consider the alternative.

        My hands, especially the thumbs (one of which I dislocated long ago) are starting to feel the years of cyclocross bikes on singletrack. And the feet are definitely showing the effects of high mileage too. Everything in between is likewise in pretty poor repair. Some days I feel like a Section 8 rental with eyes.

        That said, I’m hiking 10-15 miles a week and riding the Steelman on singletrack again.

        “I’m not dead. … I don’t want to go on the cart. I think I’ll go for a walk. …”

        • Herb from Michigan Says:

          Now you’ve said it….thumbs. After all my various zippers and gashes (without clothes on I look like a carp run over several times by an Evinrude prop) I get around quite well. But the thumb joints are now shot and I’m fearful of the fix. Seems like only 50% of the surgeries are satisfactory in patient reviews. Thems not good odds. Just about any activity short of reading a book riles the Really Bad Thumb up. I have to have 5 year olds open beers for me. Figured once winter petered out and warm weather took hold, the worst of the Itis Brothers would lay low. Hell no- been over 90 degrees every day for over a week and 5 year olds are in short supply around here.
          I did try multiple acupuncture and e-stim treatments which produced nothing but a thinner wallet. Any advice from readers?

          • DownhillBill Says:

            Splints, as provided by Occupational Therapists. I used to work for a small company making patented designs to order from silver and gold. Silver was usually the most practical material (far easier to deal with than say, stainless steel). Gold was used for additional strength or, of course, bling factor. We couldn’t provide a solution for every possible problem, but in many cases they worked quite well. Used them myself to stop trashing my hands. I once made 18 splints in gold for a martial arts instructor afflicted with Swan Neck disorder, where the finger joints bend back more than 180 degrees. He was quite pleased. Another patient was a cop whose thumb would bend back when he tried to collar someone, and awaaay they’d go. Solved his problem, too. Most people didn’t exert as much strength as these guys, and were fine with silver. Insurance coverage varied, as with most anything. OT’s usually make splints from a white plastic, but those are clunkier, get dirty pretty quickly, can’t be worn under gloves, etc. I remember thank-you notes from people finally able to button their own clothes again. They are also sold through some hand surgeons. I’ve heard the same reports about surgical solutions. If splints don’t work, you can just take them off.

        • Patrick O'Grady Says:

          I likewise have heard (from physical therapists) that your odds are not good with the hand surgeons. I’d try everything from splints to voodoo before I told the whitecoats to start cutting.

  8. Herb from Michigan Says:

    Well Downhill Bill got me off my ass and I’m trying one of the top rated splint supports. Been burned by PT and OT around these parts so I’m bypassing that route. I’ll avoid the sawbones until the damn hand falls off. Although there is a newer procedure that inserts a pulley and cable to eliminate bone on bone friction. I can relate to that…wonder if they use Shimano parts? Index shifting?

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      If you got ’em from Rivendell they’ll be friction jobbers. But rilly pretty.

      In any case, keep us posted. I’m barely a primate at this point. Ook ook ook.

    • Shawn safe & sound in a mask factory.. in the Gorge Says:

      Sounds like a pretty interesting design. Bill, if you have a photo or two or can direct me to a website with the silver / gold splints, I’d like to see that.

      I suppose also that adding in some type of edible THC brownie might help out. I can’t say that your thumbs would benefit much but your mood would likely be a lot better and your appetite for munchies should skyrocket…

      Pulley and cable? Haven’t they got the memo yet about electronic digiting? There’s even an app for moving your fingers with your smartphone….

      • Hurben Says:

        Interesting point Shawn, I have osteoarthritis on my right knee, (decades worth of distance running) & in the bottom joint of my right hand thumb. I’ve been taking Hemp Seed oil 1,100MG capsules for a couple of months & I’ve noticed a definite improvement pain-wise.

        • Shawn in the Gorge Says:

          That’s great to hear that the Hemp Seed may be working out for you. I haven’t required the need yet to imbibe in the special properties of the marijuana plant, but I have a number of friends that appreciate the comforting results that they obtained through use of various THC and CBD components that are available. I find it reassuring that society has changed toward marijuana and its derivatives use. Although not perfect I believe the benefits of marijuana legalization have outweighed the problems that introducing it has created.

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