Close Encounters

We live on the edge of town, not quite in the full-blown country but close enough to see feral cats, dumped dogs, hissing possums, semi-evil coyotes, silent owls, nasty buzzards, large turtles, random snakes, awkward armadillos and other critters on a regular basis. Every night toward the far side of ten o’clock, Daisy the Dog and I venture outside for her last ‘hurry up’. (Years ago, a good friend told me to call the dog’s business a hurry up rather than a s#!t as it sounds much more genteel to yell at the dog to ‘hurry up’ rather than ‘go take a s#!t’.)

Last night under a half-moon nearly obscured by hurricane-induced clouds, we followed our regular routine.  Upon approaching the prescribed area, Daisy was distracted by rustling in a nearby bush.  I heard it, too, thinking it was the neighbor’s cat come for a late night visit.  Daisy, forgetting her original purpose, ambled toward the bush and leaned in close.  I neared the bush as well to pet the cat and remind Daisy to hurry up. 

The moon slipped out from behind a cloud and the darkness peeled away a bit.  Just enough for me to see that Daisy and I were peering at the business end of a skunk from about three feet away.  While I have taken a direct hit from a skunk many moons ago, Daisy hadn’t.  I made the executive decision that she didn’t need the experience and I didn’t want to repeat it.  I grabbed at the dog’s tail to distract her as I was backpedaling from the skunk’s tail.  Apparently, the skunk had mercy on us or just failed to fire.

We hurried up and hurried back inside none the worse for wear. However, I will take a flashlight with me tonight.

image credit: San Diego Zoo


In her bullet journal she is chronicling her extended leave from school, friends, and the world in general due to the coronavirus pandemic. At this point, it has been only a couple months of quarantine at home, though I wonder what her journal will contain six months from now. So far, she has been doing her online schoolwork in a dutiful fashion and, knowing her, will continue to do so until the regular school term is over. But I wonder what will happen if regular school doesn’t start up in the fall which will be her senior year in high school? What will she write about then? How will she cope with quarantine then or the changes that coronavirus has made in the world? Gen Z of which she is a part already has an entirely different take on society and its mores than her current ancestors – parents and grandparents. While we are quarantined together as a family without much tangible loss other than socialization with others, we are not seventeen. She is. We will never know the full effects that such a mass social quarantine will have on one’s psyche and perspective in the long run.

image credit: Mario Azzi on

Q Fail 2

I was feeling more-than-normally quarantined, but also more-than-normally energetic. It was too early to drink so I found a Bourbon Nut Bread recipe for the borrowed bread maker taking up room in my pantry. Tested the bourbon…ok. Tested the brown sugar…ok. I was pretty sure the baking powder and flour were ok, so I proceeded to bake which means I pressed the appropriate buttons on the bread machine.

(see photo)

This was by far the ugliest, crumbliest so-called bread substance I have ever created mechanically enhanced or not; however, it doesn’t taste that bad heated up with a LOT of butter on it. Nevertheless, next time regardless of what the clock says I will be drinking the bourbon with ginger ale and eating Sara Lee.

image credit: Madison White

We Are All A Little Broken

“You are damaged and broken and unhinged. But so are shooting stars and comets.” ― Nikita Gill If you have read some of my previous posts you are …

We Are All A Little Broken

I have received reactions to this post and don’t want to claim any credit. I hope the link below will take you to the original author’s full text which impressed me so much that I wanted to repost it; however, I didn’t repost it correctly. Please try again if you want to read more of this most interesting observation on humanity.

Q Fail

It’s still quarantine and everyone is focused on living more healthy, more calm, more fulfilled lives…right?

In my continued attempts to quarantine successfully, I borrowed a bread maker. I was going to make more bread, the easy way, which only makes the results worse since I didn’t have to really ‘do’ anything. Flour and yeast are hard to come by but after waiting more than two days for my Amazon delivery, I procured both. However, it seems I bought spelt flour. The Internet told me that was permissible. So I followed a recipe in the bread maker cookbook and ended up with some thing the dog won’t eat.

My special spelt bread was caked, not dusted but caked, with raw flour around the severely overdone crust. Not an attractive loaf and to top it off, very soggy in the middle. No amount of butter, sorghum, apricot jelly, or wine made it taste good or look better.

I have a spent spelt loaf of mash. I wonder if I can make beer from the remaining spelt flour? Also, I am ordering Wonder Bread from Amazon today.

(Full disclosure: In my last post, I raved about the comforts of making an old-fashioned dill bread by hand. That loaf was delicious…believe me, but apparently that effort didn’t portend success for the future.)

image credit: of batter and