“Look! I’m a trumpet!”

Where do the cats sleep? That’s always a question of interest around our house. Where is their current hammock?

Dax has really taken to the new cat tree, as it is more of a kitty time share. But at night, he and iCat like to sleep in our near our bedroom.

This morning, I found Dax in our closet, occupying the spot that a trumpet normally does.

Transmission Turmoil

The timing was funny that I was watching the season finale of Scorpion last night, where I watched a mechanical device cause an electrical disruption. That irony was lost on me until just a few minutes ago.

After having a leak in my clutch assembly a few weeks back, the mechanics had to drop the transmission to get to the leak to fix it. After getting it back, there had been a few times I noticed a power drop off at the top of my third gear.

This happened to me again today while on the freeway (Bronx cheer, anyone?), heading to have lunch with my wife. However, I was not where I could shift out of 3rd right away, and my engine flamed out. I coasted down the overpass, off my exit, and to a side street JUST in time to lose all momentum.

Despite having electrical power for my radio, my gauges, my A/C, etc… it wouldn’t start. A battery jump finally started it. I got the battery and alternator tested out shortly after, and there is no problem.

Have I ever told you that I don’t like problems that I can’t find an answer to?

Manners

So J-Mac and I set off to Hobby Lobby to do a Mother’s Day shopping trip. With a little guidance, J-Mac picks his gifts for Mom!

When we got there, I put him in a basket outside the store, then we waited for an older couple to exit the store before we went in. As they exited, J-Mac said “THANK YOU”, to which I didn’t think anything of. I hear it numerous times because he’s been taught to say it at hopefully the right time.

As the couple cleared from the door way, we started to go in. However, the lady came back to open the door back. I tried to tell her it was OK and we could get it. But she said, “No, he said thank you, and so I need to hold the door open.”

J-Mac: 40 Months

So J-Mac, I am borrowing this concept from a friend of a friend’s blog. But I think this would be a good way to look back on life when you can start reading.

We’ve been in Lubbock for a month and a half. You’re a very flexible guy, unless you have had too much. I’ve been very thankful you listen and follow what I ask (within a range of the fact you are three years old and don’t want to listen). But you do like when you’re able to be around your mama. We both look forward to the end of the school year already when she doesn’t have to be in Kansas during the week.

You’re in two different pre-school programs. Around the apartment, we know them as “morning school” and “lion room”. The ball pit and tunnel in the motor room at “morning school” are always your favorites to talk about. But you are making a lot of progress with things at both schools. It is wonderful to hear you talking and see your personality blossom more and more every day.

Every time you want to go home, you want to go see the “killy cats”. But you are happy to see cousins, Grammy & Dangran, as well as Pappy. I know you seemed to like school and life in Kansas, but you appear to be latching on to life in Lubbock even more!

We’re Not In #Kansas Anymore

No, I haven’t changes my name to Dorothy. No, neither of the cats have been through Calvin’s Transmogrifier and turned in to dogs. But I am quoting the venerated Hollywood gem “The Wizard of Oz” for a reason. After nearly a year in Kansas, the family will be returning to the howling winds of West Texas (though not by one of those Kansas twisters).

J-Mac and I will be there prior to Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, Tara will have the mother lode of all work commutes. However, we hope to rectify that after the school year is over.

Smart Kid

So I have been spending some time with J-Mac lately. He has this toy that plays several different songs, including “If You’re Happy And You Know It”. The other day, I didn’t teach him any words to it, I just did clapping, stopping, and shouting “Hooray”. So just now, I hear him around the corner, playing that song off that toy, and replicating the clapping, stomping, and shouting.

The other week when we were last present for Tara’s latest home football game, I made him clap along to the fight song one time. He immediately did it every time after (which was a lot, since they shut down and shout out the opponents by halftime with the mercy rule).

J-Mac is one smart cookie.

Hey #Toto, I think we finally made it to #Kansas!

We blessed the rains down in Africa while carrying on my wayward son, but we finally made it back from the land of Oz!

Kansas is a new adventure, just like Georgia and Arizona before it. On my way up here, I went through Liberal, Kansas and got to see “Dorothy’s House”. No, it wasn’t the real house. But it is one that could have likely been home to a real life Dorothy Gale.

Even up here in Northwest Kansas, away from the towns, away from the highways, the roads are a bit like what you saw in The Wizard of Oz. They are all dirt roads that criss-cross at particular intervals. I can imagine Mrs. Gulch peddling down one of those roads right now.

Also, considering that we live in the county in Kansas with the highest number of tornados in recorded history in the entire state, it’s not hard when I am out on the highway to imagine I’m keeping parallel with a grand looking twister. But that imagination always gets ruined when the Interstate curves in the direction I’m looking, and the tornado in my imagination would have swept me right up.

But, we can’t blame the Wonderful Wizard of Oz for that. My imagination has also been stoked by watching seasons of the now defunct Weather Channel series “Storm Chasers”. With the exception of the twisters of in Alabama during the time the show was running, they were either in the Oklahoma City area, or starting the day just south of where I currently live.

(Disclaimer: My county has the highest number of recorded tornados in state history, but zero fatalities. If I was on the road while I saw a tornado, I wouldn’t just blindly continue on. And I know my safety around these storms thanks to my good buddy Ron Roberts.)

Tragedy in Virginia

Many of my former colleagues from my time in television have been expressing their sympathies and prayers concerning this morning’s tragic killing of two journalists. Me personally, I’ve had a pit in my stomach all day since first reading the alerts on my phone, then the full-detailed stories. I’ve gone through my own issues both inside and outside the stations I worked at. They all pale in comparison to anything else that has happened though, including today. I’ve known people that have been threatened and been actual victims of crimes. It’s a frightening thought. And to think, today the victims’ attacker was a former co-worker. Even scarier. Prayers go out to those families tonight. They may never understand, but I hope they will get some peace sooner or later.

windows update

Patience, young grasshopper, patience.

The manner and method of release of the brand new Windows 10 operating system has highlighted one particular thing that is not the forte of most Americans these days. Patience is required when going to this new operating system.

Another thing that is highlighted is Windows Update. There are many people out there who have not turned on their Windows Updates because they didn’t know to. There are also those that heard that there was a malicious update that crashed computers. There’s a better chance you will have a car crash than a computer crash due to Windows Update.

Good thing is that if you have updated to Windows 10, Microsoft has taken this worry out of your hands. All you have to worry about now is to be patient. Your Windows Updates will now load for you. If something isn’t working just right just yet, have patience. It will.

This article will help you understand the particulars better.

(Disclaimer: If you’re having patience with a corporate network, talk to your IT guy. Then decide if you still want to be patient or not.)

tropical followup

The key word in the wake of Tropical Storm Bill was deluge. I came to work the morning it was supposed to hit. The storm decided to hang out off the coast for another 5-6 hours. In that time, the storm moved west. The storm did indeed bulls-eye where I work. Nothing crazy on the wind, so not really any damage to speak of. But we got all the rain. It is estimated that 13.5″ of rain fell around the area of the office. My route back home was closed off by 10am. The office closed at 1pm. I left then. I was planning on leaving at 3pm originally had the office not closed. I had to drive west, then north, then back around to home. They closed off several stretches of the route I took within an hour of me going through. My total drive time was 2.5 hours. Then it took me an hour each way the next day on top of working late.

Now the ground is drying out. Maybe it will stay that way for a little bit.