User-agent: Mediapartners-Google* Disallow: Things that make you go hmmm.: November 2006

Things that make you go hmmm.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Additional comments on the pear ball dilemma

I previously posted about our "ornamental" pear trees and the mess that we had to clean up after a wind storm. I incorrectly stated that all of the pear balls had come down when in fact there are still a few hundred still hanging on in the trees with a few that fall each day. When I was out picking up the few that had fallen yesterday after work, I noticed some pear stains on our driveway and sidewalk and wondered how they could be there since it hadn't been that windy. When I looked closer at these stains, I noticed they were not just random splats, but they had a definite "design" to them. How could that be? Then I realized that these stains weren't splats from the pears falling off, but they were the prints from the feet of birds that have also been interested in these fallen pear balls. I guess as they trapse through the mess of pear balls looking for a meal they get the gunk on their feet which leaves a mark as they hop on the cement. I would assume these are mostly Magpies which we have seen recently around the trees.

Speaking of Magpies, did you know that the word pie may be from magpie, shortened to pie. The explanation offered in favor or this is that the magpie collects a variety of things, and that it was an essential feature of early pies that they contained a variety of ingredients. Hmmm!

Speaking of pies, what kind of pie do you most enjoy at Thanksgiving? Do you have the traditional pumpkin pie? We usually have pumpkin and pecan. I think pecan pie is one of my favorites. I have decided that I definitely like pie more than cake, how about you?

Speaking of Thanksgiving, I wish you all a wonderful time with family and/or friends this week, and I hope you truly recognize that we should be thankful to the one and only true God for His love and blessings.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Palm trees in the Pacific NW?

If you read my previous post you may have wondered about the picture of the palm tree blowing in the wind. You may have asked yourself "do they really have palm trees in the Pacific NW?" Well, the picture is just a free-use photo I looked up on yotophoto, so it isn't an actual picture of the wind storm we just had, but it made me think of another post of something that will make you go hmmm. We do actually have palm trees here. Actually, we used to. There was a little strip mall parking lot that the owner lined with palm trees. Our climate isn't one that could support palm trees year round like in Florida or SoCal, so the owner of this strip mall would put these palm trees out each spring and keep them out during the summer and then uproot them before the winter and store them in a barn or something and bring them out again the next year. I think he either got tired of this or they finally died, because we haven't seen them there for awhile now.

Update from the cleanup of pear balls. It took me about 2 hours and 21 5-gallon bucketfulls to pick up all the pear balls that were in our lawn yesterday. My back and legs are sore. Now our trash container is half full of them. Glad the trash man comes tomorrow.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Pelted with little pear balls and garbage

Have you ever heard the phrases "what do you want... wicker?" or "they pelted us with rocks and garbage"? For some reason I remember these from many years ago from one of David Lettermen's first top 10 lists of the top 10 new catch phrases. Actually I know why I remember these, because my brother used to say them over and over. I guess they really did become catch phrases for us even though they don't have any real meaning.

Anyway, I thought of the second phrase when I thought about the results of the huge windstorm we had last night. We had a high winds with gusts I think up to 50-60 mph. We were awake for a few hours around 2 this morning because of the noise and because our little girl woke up scared by the wind noises. Our son slept through the whole thing.

When I left for work this morning, I surveyed the mess that I will have to clean up. There were tumbleweeds everywhere. Our neighbor's trash was strewn all down the street. Another neighbor's trampoline was lifted out of their backyard and landed near the entrance to our neighborhood and with the netting around the edge, it looked like a huge spider waiting for oncoming cars. But, the biggest mess was all the little pear balls that pelted our windows, garage, and house. The splats make our house look like it was used for a paintball tournament. Yes, there were thousands of little pear balls in our "ornamental" pear trees that were nearly all blown off this morning. I know there are thousands because I have picked up hundreds in the past few weeks that have already fallen off. What is up with our two pear trees that are supposed to be "ornamental" pears which means they aren't supposed to produce fruit right? Well ours and our next door neighbors trees do. And they create quite a huge mess. At least they are now all off at once and I should be able to clean them all up once and for all.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Are you ready for some football?

Monday, I got to leave work early to pick up my son from school. He didn't ride the bus home because he had chess club after school. This is amazing in itself as there are like 70 kids in his elementary school chess club that meets every other week. Anyway, on the way home I had the radio tuned to the ESPN sports talk station and they were talking about the Seattle Seahawks and the upcoming game. My son recognized the names Matt Hasselbeck and Shaun Alexander who are injured and wouldn't be playing. He couldn't remember what position Matt Hasselbeck played. I told him quarterback and he said something like "that's one of the most important players on the team right?" and "that's the guy who takes the ball and kicks it..." I tried to explain the position to him and he made another comment that indicated that he really didn't know much about the game. I decided at that point that he and I needed to sit down that night and watch Monday Night Football. He watched and was interested for a few plays, but then he lost interest and was tired and had to go to bed. So what age do most kids start to want to watch sports on TV? I have to admit, I hope that his interest in sports increases and I wouldn't mind his interest in chess club waning a bit over the years.