Monday’s Theme Music

Guess I’m in a nostalgic mood. Perhaps it’s the day. With gusty winds, leaves turning yellow and gold and dancing as they leap from trees, a blue sky so clear you can see tomorrow, and a bit of balmy warmth creeping in, it feels like a perfect autumn day. At least, this is how I remember perfect autumn days. They make me want to go somewhere, do things, visit with friends, and chat with nature.

Totally lifts my spirit even while I hunger to beg off the usual routines, jump in the car, and be off. With some amusement, as I did the dress-feed the cats–make breakfast and coffee routine, I was humming sotto voce. Catching the tune, I put words to it with surprise.

The song was from 1981. I was twenty-five then, feeling good about life and prospects. The year’s beginning had us living in base housing at Randolph Air Force Base in Texas, driving a new metallic copper Pontiac Firebird we’d bought the year before. Aunts, uncles, and cousins had moved here from Pittsburgh, PA, and lived nearby, giving us family to visit. Life had an easy rhythm.

By May, we’d sold the car and taken up a new assignment at Kadena Air Base, Okinawa, Japan, a three year tour which began with us living for a few weeks in the base hotel while we bought a used car and found a place to live off base. It was a great adventure.

Here is Santana’s 1981 cover of “Winning”, a song from that time.

Licorice & Coin Dream

I was taking a class in something somewhere, and hanging out with relative strangers. During lunch break, I sat with some, looking at my schedule and talking with them. As I delved into the schedule, I scrolled down and discovered a hidden section. Using sorting options, I gradually realized that it was the future.

After checking out my future and listening to others, I began telling them their future. “How do you know that?” several asked.

I told them what I’d found and began showing them how to do it themselves. Most struggled with it, though.

It was lunch time and I still hadn’t eaten. A bunch of us went walking to find food. It seemed like we walked through an outdoor mall. Food options were there but they were expensive and time-consuming, and none appealed to me. I complained, nostalgically remembering when I’d take college classes in the military and run into the exchange to buy a two-dollar cheeseburger.

We came to a dusty little shop. I entered with a few others. Still looking for something to eat, I found a bag of licorice for two dollars. Not nutritious, but I could share it with others, was cheap, and would stave off my immediate hunger.

As I was buying, I realized that taxes would make it $2.01. Looking for a penny and asking others if they had a penny so I could avoid getting ninety-nine cents in change, I found a huge gold coin on the floor. I thought at first it could be a shiny new penny, but it was two big, and it was gold, not copper. Picking it up, I examined it. Besides being gold, it had copper segment in it. About the size of a silver dollar, a geometric design surrounded the best of a man, and an unrecognized language.

I concluded that it was token, not a coin. Holding it up to the shopkeeper, I asked with some cheek, “Can I use this?” In good humor, he replied, “I’ll take it off your hands.” Something about how he said it made me think it was worth more than I was assigning it. I asked him what it was, but he never answered. My transaction was finished. I opened the bag of licorice and offered some to others.

The dream ended.

Floof Post

Floof Post (floofinition) – 1. (Archaic) Correspondence delivery that depends on using animals in some way.

In use: “Floof post in the pre-electronic age included carrier pigeon and the famous Pony Express in the western United Floofs.”

2. A blog or social media entry whose subjects is about animals or includes extensive references to animals.

In use: “Floof posts about kittens, puppies, kids, and lambs, seem to dominate the web in popularity as people hunt relief from bad news in 2020.”

3. Vertical element used in fencing where animals such as birds and cats sit and watch the world.

In use: “Post turtle is a floof post used as a metaphor for someone in a position that doesn’t make sense; no one has any idea how the turtle got there, but he shouldn’t be there, and needs help.”

Arctic Floofs

Arctic Floofs (floofinition) – Floof rock (flock) musical band formed in Sheffield, Floofland, in 2002.

In use: “With tongue firmly in cheek, the Arctic Floofs released their second EP, Who the Fuck Are Arctic Floofs? , in 2006, reflecting how they’d come to prominence in Floofland via the net.”

Sunday’s Theme Music

Not light music today. Looked at the news landscape and thought, there’s a lot of psychopaths out there, a realization that let the 1977 Talking Heads song, “Psycho Killer”, stream into my mind. A repeat song but it could be the theme music for an entire body of uncaring people who lack empathy and are willing to kill in the name of their love, you know? I liked it up, and it’s been almost three years since I last used it as a theme song. That gives me license in my mind (which is where I’m making up these rules in the first place) to use it again.

Yeah, that is all.

Flooflich Maneuver

Flooflich Maneuver (floofinition) – An action taken by an animal to show love to another or reassure them by licking them, which often calms and cheers the recipient.

In use: “Sensing she was upset, her cat jumped up on the chair beside her, sniffed her head and face, and then applied the Flooflich Maneuver on her nose and cheeks.”

Most Disturbing

Our local disaster, the Almeda Fire of earlier this month, issues numerous disturbing points for anyone who thinks about cause, effect, and results.

  1. To summarize, ours isn’t the worst disaster of the fire season. Not the largest, nor longest burning. Fast and brutal, it destroyed a few Ashland homes (my town, about two miles from my house). Then, egged on by high winds, it went north and west and destroyed two small neighboring towns, Talent and Phoenix, and terrorized Medford. Thousands of structures were destroyed. Thousands of people are displaced.
  2. While the fire was being fought, water ran out. The fire hydrants literally ran out of water. Multiple and simultaneous demands killed water pressure. That lack of water pressure meant first, no more water to fight fires, and second, potentially contaminated several towns’ drinking water. Boil warnings were issued.
  3. We have sirens and emergency systems set up in Jackson County and Ashland. Neither were used. Why? As the fire spread, evacuation orders were issued for one neighborhood. The entire city (and the county) was put on Level 1 evacuation orders, which means, be ready to go. But the Sheriff didn’t want the emergency warnings used; he didn’t want to cause panic. So instead of using those two systems, they did nothing. We were left in an information vacuum.
  4. Spectrum’s internet (and cable TV and landline systems) went down. A major cable burned through. Those of us still with Internet were able to log on. Facebook, and a local community group, became the most valued source of information. This was basically done by monitoring other cities and towns’ emergency orders to pass on to Ashlanders what was happening. That group, which already did a great job, is now asking, what can we do better? Love the proactive approach.
  5. Cell phone capability was compromised as the fire burned down several regional cell towers.
  6. The unscathed rallied to help the survivors. Money, food, clothing, batteries, telephone chargers, water, etc., were donated.
  7. Most of the money donated through the United Way and the Red Cross remain tied up in bureaucracy. Want help? Go to them. People who’ve lost everything were being directed to go hunt down the Red Cross and United Way and apply for help.
  8. Red Cross did set up at the Expo Center, where other agencies were set up. Here’s a classic tale, though. A man got onto Facebook and told the Red Cross there, hey, we don’t have transportation. We can’t get to you. Their response: call the national hotline. The national hotline’s response: call your local chapter. A local Red Cross worker finally woke up and said, I’ll get you help. It shouldn’t be so damn hard, though.
  9. Meanwhile, FEMA has become a joke. Their guidance is to apply. Then, if you’re turned down, apply again. And if you’re turned down again, keep applying until you’re approved.
  10. How fucking broken is FEMA that their standard operating procedure seems to be to initially reject people but, you know, keep trying. Savage, especially for people who have lost everything, their paperwork, clothing, and the mobile and manufactured homes that they lived in. They were already just hanging on, keeping their heads high enough to avoid being sucked under, and this agency, established to help survivors after a disaster, prove to be inept and bungling. Infuriating.
  11. *snark alert* One noble local business, a storage place, told their renters that everyone needs to come in and clean up their space. By the way, they’re still charging the full amount for the month. Sounds like good fucking people, right?
  12. Should write about the animals, but don’t want to. It’s painful. Many people prize their animals above everything else. Now they’re scrambling to find them. Animals are being found, fed, treated, etc. Communities have been set up online to share photos, sightings, descriptions, etc. It’s a huge, sprawling mess, though. There must be a way to do it better. I end up getting diverted, looking through descriptions of lost pets and thinking, I saw that animal listed on another page, didn’t I? Then I go looking, usually without success.
  13. Some pets have been re-united, and those are noted as success. It’s also noted when animals have crossed the rainbow bridge.
  14. The photos of singed, burnt surviving animals rip your guts, you know?
  15. Think of all the services that you use. Gas, water, trash pickup, electric, banking, credit cards, phone, Internet. All needed to be called to be told, “Hello, my home burned down.” In the case of Internet, gas, and electric, they needed to be told, shut off those services and please don’t charge me. For banking and credit cards, it was sometimes, watch for fraud or send me new cards.
  16. A bright spot emerged from the local restaurants. Many locally owned places in Ashland said, you need a meal, come in and tell us, no charge, no questions asked. We’re here for you. A few made hundreds of meals and went off to the evacuation points and served them. Other businesses, schools, and churches set their parking lots up as socially distanced places where people can park and sleep, opening up their restrooms and showers (when available) for people to use 24/7.

There is more, but you know, that’s enough for one September Saturday. Be safe. Enjoy your day. Take care.

And please wear your damn mask.

Saturday’s Theme Music

A song — well, late youth. By mid-1974, I’d turned adult, becoming a legal adult (well, that varies by state, country, and era, doesn’t it?), graduated high school, left home, and joined the military.

Still, I count “I Can Dance (Long Tall Glasses)” by Leo Sayer as a song from my youth. It’s a fun song. It came to me last night when I started dancing with the cat in the kitchen. I was dancing to another song in my head. My cat (Tucker, the big long-haired black and white fella) was bugging me for something (who knows, with cats?). He sat down to watch, so saying that I was dancing with my cat is a stretch. The look he was gifting me said, “What are you doing?”

To which I replied, “I can dance, you know I can dance.” Summarizing the essence of the Sayer song, he’s hungry, comes across a sign offering friend food and drink, but discovers that you have to dance for your meal. He then goes from claiming he can’t dance to declarations that he can dance.

Sure. It was just a matter of finding the right motivation and having faith in yerself, isn’t it?

Here’s the song.

Elvin Bisfloof

Elvin Bisfloof (floofinition) Long time Floofmerican blues musician and songwriter from Floofdale, Califloofnia, inducted into the Floof and Roll Hall of Fame in 2015 as a member of the Paul Butterfloof Blues Band and on his own in 2016.

In use: “Highly successful, Elvin Bisfloof is probably best known for his 1976 released, “Fooled Around and Got A Floof”, which charted respectfully in many places and was used in the movie, Guardians of the Floofaxy.

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