Thursday, June 24, 2010

One Bad Ass Lawnmower

  Okay, so my Dad went and got himself a new lawnmower... finally.   Really not much wrong with his old John Deere other than it was old and he'd got a hankering for a new ride, so he shopped.   And he shopped and shopped and shopped until there weren't any mower dealers left in the tri-state area to harass, and decided to buy a Gravely from the new dealer in town.   He was tellin' me 'bout it and all (still shopping at this point) and I told him "Just go buy the biggest damned one they got Dad".   He wasn't quite sold on my sales pitch at this point but it made him think.  My folk's yard is immense, probably 2 acres or more, lotsa trees and bushes and stuff to mow around and the mower he was looking at was a zero turn rig.

  Now let me back up just a touch in my story.  Dad's had several bulldozers over the years, I never took to 'em much mostly 'cause I hated working on 'em all the time.  Everything is big, greasy, unwieldy and ugly to work on on a Cat.  Oh I could run any of 'em just fine, I just didn't.  I figured it was expected of me to be the mechanic for the most part and if I started operating it I'd also be expected to be the operator and I just didn't want any part of it.  

  I had better things to do.

  So as Dad got older this last D-7 Caterpillar kinda languished around the place, just sitting, he wasn't able to climb on the thing and run it for much more than 15 or 20 minutes at a time, but............ he'd get a hankering to hear it run and drive it back and forth and jack around with it and I was the mechanic that usually spent 1/2 to a full day getting pony motor running on the thing and quite frankly, it became a sore spot for me.

  So there it sat.

  Okay back to lawnmowers.   Dad caves in to my logic which is "you've got the money, buy the biggest damned thing they sell and be done with it"... and buys what is quite possibly every man's dream come true in lawn mowing utensils.  

  One bad ass lawnmower.

It's got a freakin' roll bar, for craps sake...

It's got tires fit for Bigfoot.  Manly tires!

It's got 26 horses of Kawasaki, flame throwing, noise belching engine.  The damned thing holds 10 gallons of gas! 

From the back it looks like a cross between a dang Bobcat and a transformer with an erection.

Of course it has a drink holder, seat belts, folding arm rests on the hydraulically cushioned seat and it leaves a trail of testosterone where ever you drive it.

Bad ass, no?

So after he buys the mower he drives straight to our house, giddy as a little kid, Dad is 82, to tell me his story about buying his dream lawnmower.  But in his excitement he abbreviates the story quite a bit which is out of character for him.  It runs in the family.  We get a lot of mileage out of a good story.

Dad : "So I paid 'em for the mower and it was $6999 dollars and told 'em to deliver it and me and your Mom are leaving the dealership and Bud Payne sees us there in the car and pulls in and says "How much you want for your dozer today?"  and Dad says "What are you offering?"  Bud says "I'll write you a check for $7000 for it right now"  Dad says "Need a pen?"

So he's all tickled 'cause he just made $1 dollar on his deal.  I was in tears laughing.

The old bulldozer was worth more than that, but it's gone, I'm happy.  Dad's got a new mower, I cut his grass today with it, it's like a freakin Ferrari.  It'll run something like 11 mph... for real.

Mom told me on the phone when the dozer left on the trailer truck Dad just kinda stood there watching it leave.  Not quite crying but knowing that that phase of his life was over.   THAT makes me sad too, I know there'll be a day when something similar will happen with me and my kids will have to watch me "not quite cry".

Bitchin' mower though, Pops.


Friday, June 11, 2010

The Johnny Cash Project

  I'm really not schlepping out on a post today, I just ran across this pretty freaking incredible video called The Johnny Cash Project.   How the thing works is folks from all over creation have drawn a frame for the song Ain't No Grave and it's been made into a complete work.  Actually still a work in progress, if you want to draw a frame and have it added, you can.   Anyhows... give it a watch and a listen.  The song is typical of later recordings of Cash, driven, beautiful and haunting.  The percussion sound of the chain.... perfect.


Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Vote For Me... I'll Save The Freakin' Planet, Or Something.

  So I was cutting the grass the other day, just mindlessly riding back and forth, polluting the atmosphere with my infernal combustion engined John Deere, and enjoying it just a tad, when I got to pondering about something a friend of mine, Duane had said 'bout the BP oil squirt-a-thon down yonder in the Gulf.   He had a good idea and I pondered it out quite a bit further. 

  Okey dokey, we've got Gabillions of dollars of Stimulus money just languishing around in piles waiting to do something with it, but we can't decide what.  We've created a horde of new Govt. jobs and we did a Cash For Clunkers program... both wildly successful.  Right?  Okay (that was sarcasm there, for the uninitiated).  

  On the other hand we've got unemployment at an all time high... or close to it.  Folks are willing to work.  It's true.  

  On the third hand, (this is the one that you usually use to smack your kids in the back of the head with in the checkout of the grocery store when they're in Whiney McWhinerson mode, and you don't want anyone to see you smack your kid)  we've got an offshore oil well, all busted off and spewing Black Gold, Texas Tea all over everyones favorite vacation areas and ruining things right and left.  

Now then, here's my plan.   Take a big whopping slaggy nasty stack of those Gabillions of Stimulus dollars, throw together a little store front, register folks as private sector employees of the Govt, give 'em a little ID card to swipe and wear around their necks to make 'em feel important and shit like that.
 "What is this business gonna be?" Says you.   It's gonna be Scoop The Urping Petroleum Into Dumpsters.   S.T.U.P.I.D. if you will.  Send these ID card swinging folks out with buckets, give 'em $5 bucks for every pound of crude blobs they gather up and deposit into the container that Kevin Costner or that Titantic director dude is gonna invent just for this.   Hell, give those 2 ol' boys a million or two apiece just for hanging 'round and doing wonderful things like this.

   So now you've gotTENS OF THOUSANDS, maybe HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of folks traipsing around beaches and out in the water picking up oil blobs for 5 bucks a pound, and in about a month, the job will be over. 

  THEN... lol then you bill BP the end amount plus a 2 dollar per pound fee for conducting their cleanup effort for them.   Take that money and hand it over to the Chinese get rid of some of that freaking national debt thing for crying out loud.   Seriously.  Let BP get that monkey offa our backs for awhile.

  Okay so... I have put a good portion of the country back to work, even if for a short period of time, I've got the stupid oil spill cleaned up, and I've paid off a portion of the national debt.   The only thing I haven't done is plug the hole and I ain't got a clue how that works, I'll leave that one up to the Titanic dude.

  As I've pointed out to y'all before, and I'm sure you'll agree once again... I. Am. A. Jenius.   I'll be running for office a little later on, maybe President.  Vote for me.  I'll pay off your house or something even specialer if I'm elected.


Sunday, June 6, 2010

Little Old Ladies Laugh At The Secret Service...

  So whilst I was on hiatus from Sawdust and Cowpies, the Bama came to town bringing a whole tribe of confusion and chaos to our little community for... hell I don't know why.  He was here, visited the ethanol plant down the road from me, spun around in circles, spent a veritable shitload of your money, ate at a diner, schlepped around the area, got back on the Bama plane and took a vacation.

  Oh wait, here's a pic of him at the little diner over in Monroe City that he stopped and was just "one of the guys" and ate at.   That's "one of the guys" if one of the guys happens to travel with a half dozen black Suburbans, another 8 or 9 white GM vans, a plethora of Missouri Highway Patrolmen, MODOT employees, a couple 3 dozen sheriff deputies, a bomb disposal unit (yes... a bomb disposal unit) and untold dozens of Secret Service and FBI lurking in the bushes and trees along his route.   So... just like one of the guys, he gets some food at some diner that I can't remember the name of and someone snapped this totally awesome pic of him with a local dude giving him the bunny ears....

  Does that freakin' rock or what?  Yeah it didn't make it into mainstream media.  :-)

Okay so on with my story.   So they shut down miles and miles of highway, cost $26,000 per mile of highway that he traveled by car (true fact... that'll piss you off eh?) The security around here was ridiculous 'cause I hear his approval rating is like the lowest of any president in just about ever.  When folks don't like the pres I guess they spend a lot more time and money keeping him all comfy and stuff.  

Anyhow my mom and my aunt decided they were gonna drive over to highway 36 and wave at the president as he drove by.  Yes.   So they hit 'bout 10 backroads and launched out on a very very empty, desolate, traffic devoid strip of highway 36.   About a mile or two of driving and being the only vehicle in either the East or Westbound lanes a MO State Trooper pulls up behind 'em.  Lights blazing, siren on... the works, and he pulls over these two little gray haired ladies in the powder blue Lincoln Continental and asks them what the heck they think they're doing.   They replied "We just want to see Obama"  The trooper asks them "How in the name of God did you even get on the highway?"   They told him they took some back roads and kinda came out on a farm road and voila, there they are. 

Welp, neither my Mother nor my Aunt went to jail or anything, thank goodness, but they did get a very VERY personal escort up to highway K and headed back towards home.  Funny part of this, we didn't know anything about it for a few days, neither one of 'em fessed up right away to what they'd done, but Sally saw "A car that looked just like your Mom and Dad's Lincoln" getting headed up a very lonely highway by a cop.

Eh well... Good deal we threw down all that money for security huh?