Thursday, August 8, 43 A.B.

Did You Know...?

It's illegal to own a prairie dog in my county.

It's especially illegal to own a Texas prairie dog.

Seems they carry tularemia - a rare bacterial illness that's also called rabbit fever.  If you're ever suddenly gripped by high fever, chills, fatigue, and headache and you're NOT reading this journal at the time, you just might have caught rabbit fever.

Some 100 Americans a year do.

About 2% end up dying.

As far as I know, nobody's ever died because they read this journal. 

Just something to ponder next time someone offers to send you a Texas prairie dog and you have the opportunity to surf the Web instead....

Me?  I like prairie dogs a lot.  In fact, I think they're as cute and adorable as all get-out.  But it just so happens I've had all my cute and adorable needs filled this week by the sudden appearance of a back yard bunny.  It's the first one I've ever seen here - and I've been here looking for back yard bunnies for over a year now.

First appearance: 5:05 p.m. yesterday.

Second appearance: 7:38 p.m. this evening.

Dare I hope for a third appearance tomorrow??

*Pondering as I doodle....*

Not that everything will be perfect if I am blessed with a third visitation of the bunny.

I don't mean to suggest that at all.

For one thing, even a third visitation will do nothing to arrest the precipitous decline in firefly sightings.  That decline occurs every August, of course, but somehow it never gets any easier to accept.  The few fireflies that I saw out there tonight resembled the last few single people in a bar fifteen minutes before closing time.  There's just something intrinsically sad and perhaps even pathetic about a creature that's still floating around looking for a mate while most everyone else is buying back-to-school clothes for the grandkids.

On the other hand, even the loneliest firefly can make his butt flash at will.  If I could do that, I don't think I could ever really be sad at all.  At the first sign of despair or depression, I'd just dart into a dark closet or alleyway and flash my butt for my own personal enjoyment.  It might not be quite as thrilling as winning the Nobel Prize for Literature, but I bet it's at least as satisfying as most marriages.

If you can flash your butt, be sure to let me know if I'm right or wrong about this.

*Trying to calculate the odds of my actually hearing from anybody as I doodle some more*

I weighed a bumblebee tonight.

Well, kinda.

I was out on my patio, watching it fly from purple flower to purple flower of my hanging basket plant, when I noticed that when it landed, its weight caused the flower stalk to bend.  It suddenly occurred to me that if I attached an item to the stalk which bent the stalk to the same degree, then weighed that item, I would know the weight of the bee.

It turns out that one medium-size bumblebee weighs about as much as the smallest, lightest paper clip I own.  (That clip is perhaps half the weight as a standard clip.)


Something lighter than a light paperclip that's capable of so much complicated motion and action and travel!

Of course, bumblebees do a lousy job of holding my papers together.

And paperclips never sting people.

*Ponder...  Doodle....  Ponder...  Doodle....*

Ok, here's the deal:

If you want to be entertained quite cheaply while you're sitting on your patio in the evening, watch a bumblebee - NOT a paperclip.

And if you want to absent-mindedly clean under your nails while you're on the phone, reach for a paperclip - NOT a bumblebee.

And by all means feel free to print this out and slip it under the windshield wipers of all the cars in a church parking lot next Sunday morning.

*Pausing to drum fingers on desk while vaguely imagining some teenage girl in the Ukraine actually doing this next Sunday*

I harvested 7 more cherry tomatoes tonight.

*Pause while that sinks in*

My arm is rather tired as a result.

*Pause to allow the significance of that to emerge on its own*

I think I need to end this and go to bed.

*Pause to see if anyone offers to kiss me goodnight or come tuck me in*


*Pause to see if anyone offers to kiss me goodnight*

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(©Now by DJ Birtcher - the member of the Class of '77
voted "Most Likely to Mistake a Plastic Bag for a Toy")


*Running to my dark closet and trying to flash my butt*