Seven Things Saturday

  1. We were out walking and encountered a rafter of wild turkeys. We have a few rafters in Ashland. We rarely come across them on our end of town. Encountering these smart birds is usually entertaining. Most rafters are eleven to seventeen birds in our area.
  2. This rafter was checking out the electric bikes available for rent. I imagined the turkeys were saying, “Hey, I’m tired of walking. Let’s rent some bikes.” Another replied, “I don’t see why not. I don’t see rule against turkeys anywhere on the rules.” “Cool. Does anyone have a phone? We need to use an app.” None did, ending their idea before it started.
  3. I recommend a show called “Staged” if you can watch it. It’s David Tennant and Michael Sheen as themselves. In theory, they’re rehearsing a play online during the COVID-19 lockdown. What we see are two experienced, celebrated adult film and television stars coping with the situation. The remaining cast is excellent, as are guest stars like Adrian Lester, Judi Dench, and Samuel L. Jackson. We caught it on Hulu. Sadly, there are but six episodes. My wife wants to watch it again. Good fun.
  4. My friends are circulating an email speculating how dinosaurs reproduced. It’s entertaining stuff to read. Ever imagine how big a dinosaur’s anus must be? Well, I immediately thought of the blue whale. If you watch “QI”, you know exactly why.
  5. That’s one of many emails being circulated by the same group of friends, my beer-drinking bodies. Emails about Osiris-Rex landing on Bennu and grabbing a soil sample also flew, along with the usual stuff about local politics, humor, and super-conductivity being achieved at room temperature.
  6. Active COVID-19 are increasing around the world. The US set a new daily high with 83,000 plus. Mortality is down, but hospitalizations are on the rise again. Please wear a mask and practice distancing. I know it’s hard but you’ll be happier in the end. Don’t believe me; check out recent pieces about the Stockdale Syndrome (“Have faith but face reality”).
  7. Had blood drawn as part of the annual process. Glyco-Hemoglobin A1C and Comprehensive Metabolic Panel. All looked although sodium remains stubbornly high. Good news, right?
  8. I may have driven the skunk away. It’s a bittersweet thing and still early days. First, I propped a board against the vent so that if the skunk left, I’d know. Second, I shook the house with Led Zeppelin II. Third, I then installed a boom box on max volume in the crawl space and played it for hours. We’ll see.

Yes, I know that was eight, contrary to the post title. Just call it a bonus.

Steelers Deodorant

Someone brought me some Pittsburgh Steelers deodorant. They know I’m a fan. They thought it was funny.

Coming in a black and gold container, it’s called “Steel Curtain”. Likenesses of Joe Greene, Troy Polamalu, James Harrison, and Ben Roethlisberger share the label.

I like it. The little paper that came with the box said it was formulated “through a variety of hands-on experiences” with the team. They were thorough, talking about “capturing the essence of watching film with Ben Roethlisberger in the quarterbacks room,” “the gritty combinations of linemen working out and running during OTAs,” and “the musky scent of proud men celebrating victory in the locker room,” among other aspects.

Yes, I catch some of that in its smell. It’s earthy, slightly woody to me, with a tincture of soggy, muddy grass and complex undertones of sweaty clothing, a spit of coppery blood, and the sharper, almost ethereal tang of victory. When I roll it on after my shower, my confidence vaults to higher levels. I’m ready to spring a hundred yard run. Passers-by are in danger of being tackled. The cats get wild-eyed as I sprint around the house, stiff-arming imaginary defenders, spiking the ball in the end zone, and loosing unbridled celebratory shouts.

My wife, on the other hand, raised her eyebrows at me. “What’s that smell?”

“What smell?”

Setting down her laptop, she’s glancing around. “Did something die in here?” She wrinkles up her face. “Did a cat shit in the corner?”

I sniff with indignation. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

* NOTE: This is not a real product, that I know of. I’m kind of surprised. I figured someone would’ve been all having unique deodorants, or maybe colognes for all professional teams in the U.S. Maybe they do exist. If they do, I’m sure I would’ve seen commercials or adverts. I could google it, but I’m a writer and prone to lazy fantasizing, not working.

Ready for the Floof

Ready for the Floof (floofinition) – Floofmerican R&F band formed in Floofchigan in 1982. The band achieved its greatest population and success in the 1980s. Although the group disbanded in 1991, they regrouped in 2004, and are currently touring.

In use: “Ready for the Floof’s breakout hit came with “Oh Floofla”, which reached number one on several charts in Floofmerica and Canfloofda.”


Floofpliant (floofinition) Readily manipulated or controlled by animals.

In use: “Ben thought of himself as the cat whisperer because he got along with all animals, especially cats and dogs, but the animals knew him as a floofpliant mark, good for a treat, a warm body, or a touch of love when needed.”

Saturday’s Theme Music

A 1980s power ballad burst into my head this morning. I was a little lethargic getting up. Not really looking forward to the day.

Seems like I’m in a rut. I don’t think I’m alone in that self-appraisal, not just in the U.S., but in many parts beyond our coastlines.

A large part of my malaise is the novel coronavirus who dances under several names, but most frequently appears as COVID-19. “Winter is coming,” George R.R. Martin has Ned Stark warning us. Up here in the northern climes, the daylight period is falling shorter. Night hangs on a little longer. With an overcast day like this one, there’s no daylight, just a pale grey nothingness to the sky.

I long for my old, comfortable routines. Man, am I a person of habit. I used to be flexible and adapt, but as I’ve aged, my processes have ossified. Change comes hard.

Different songs about change and attitude set the background to my dream reflections and morning routines, but then an absolutely obstinate cat – we call him Boo – crystallized the choice.

Here’s “Never Surrender” by Corey Hart (1985). For Boo.

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