The Subaru, American Legion, Class of ’62, & Hump’s

Thursday 2/26

The peanut brittle sugar rush is finally over and I’m thinking semi-clearly now. Diane will disagree, but I am. Really. I am.

Today I ordered a replacement debit card from the Navy Federal Credit Union because the one I had quit working. Totally. I’ve been hanging on to it for a year or so, babying it along because it still kinda worked, but yesterday I finally put an end to it by ripping in half. Actually, it was already torn a bit, right down the magnetic strip on the back, so I just helped it along a little making it necessary to make today’s call. Amy told me it would be in our mail box shortly.

Yesterday I listed our 1996 Subaru on the local Columbia County Buy Sell Trade Facebook site and couldn’t believe how many folks are interested in it. One guy even paid me a visit so it could look at it in the dark. He used his smart phone screen s a flashlight and looked it over then took it for a drive. I didn’t go with him because I was in my PJs’ already and didn’t want to get dressed. I just stood outside in my jammie bottoms and a T-shirt waiting for him to return. I wasn’t worried because he left his car, with the engine running, and with his wife sitting in the passenger seat playing with her iPad. He didn’t introduce us before he drove off so I didn’t talk with her. He was gone about 10 minutes before he returned and drove off after declining to assume responsibility for the rig. That’s OK because there is still someone out there who will. It’s a good little vehicle, and cheap at $1800. Just don’t need it.

I just saw an entry on Facebook reporting that smelling Rosemary will increase one’s memory by 75%. After considering that astounding bit of news for a while I figured it must be good information because it caused me to remember the time I did that in the third grade and got slugged by Rosemary’s older brother. Lesson learned. Don’t smell Rosemary.

I made a quick fly by at the Kozy Korner Kafe to see if any of my fellow MELCA members were there for our weekly Koffee Klash. I was informed by Kerri, our favorite waitress, that I was the only one who showed up so far. Armed with this bit of knowledge, I vacated the premises so I could return home and embark on one of my many abandoned projects. Not finding anything interesting enough to hold my attention for more than a couple of minutes, I decided to take advantage of another beautiful day and mow our yard. I didn’t do it all because I didn’t want to. I did just enough to make it pretty from the street which pleased Diane. So now our house looks kinda like Hong Kong when viewed from the harbor – it’s really nice and attractive, but once you get past the glitter of the front you enter a maze of clutter that’s astounding. In Hong Kong that happens about two blocks into the city, but at home it’s just a quick trip around back.

In the evening I attended our weekly Post 42 American Legion meeting. It’s been pointed out to me on a number of occasions that I really should attend these meetings since I’m the Sgt. At Arms. Along the way I picked up Mac, a WWII sailor, who doesn’t drive at night. Mac is 88 now and doing quite well. The meeting was pretty normal with the majority of us voting to raffle off another weapon this year. Last year we raffled off an AR-15. Lots of folks oppose those kinds of raffles thinking it promotes idiots to wander into a school and start shooting kids, but the reality is those folks probably have easier access to weapons than the one we raffle. Plus, they are deranged and not to be trusted. We were also mesmerized by Doug, our Financial guy and the Post Secretary, reading the past minutes as well as the current state of our finances. His voice has a hypnotic effect on me as he recites the numbers on the page before him, sharing all aspects of our efforts down to the penny. Makes it hard to remain alert for possible trouble like I’m supposed to but I did it.

Bought a new Sony sound system for our main TV so Diane could hear people talk. It was cheaper than hearing aids.

Friday 2/27

I attended one of our many informal gatherings for the Scappoose Class of 1962 for lunch at Fultano’s in Scappoose while Diane took her Mom shopping and to lunch. Diane was invited, as all spouses are, but she wanted “Mom Time” which was a good idea. One can never get enough of that.

Here’s the group who showed up. I used the pano setting on my iPhone to take the photo so the sizes are a little skewed.IMG_0147

Left to right: Eva, Sam, Mary Ann, Delores, David, Jim, Virgil, Darrell, Evelyn, Judy, and Harold. The gal on the end is Jim’s wife. She’s much younger than all of us. We’re all 70, you know, and she’s probably only 63-64. Just a spring chicken.

I ate way more than my share of everything and was pretty much stuffed the remainder of the day which caused me to not remember anything that happened after the meal. I don’t even remember driving home which would, no doubt, concern Diane had she known about it at the time. Learning now is too late and I’m sure she won’t be upset at all.

Saturday 2/28

The last day of February. Wow! I realize it’s our shortest month, but it still went by faster than normal. We spent a few hours of it, sun and all, driving back to Best Buy with the new, broken sound system to trade it in on one that would, hopefully, work for longer than a day. For some reason the original one got stuck in Protect mode and wouldn’t reset. So, Best Buy swapped it out for a new one. Just took two hours for the round trip plus 30 minutes or so to convince the Geek Squad that they weren’t going to fix it.

Mowed the church lawn and power washed Floyd’s mower in the afternoon. Mowed for 2 hours and power washed for 1. Brutal. But it’s really clean now.

Sunday 3/1

Diane jumped up exclaiming it was quarter to 10! and she was still in her jammies. So was I, but I knew I could change quicker than she can so I lingered here at the computer then got in trouble when she zoomed past me to the Buick all dressed up for church.

After the service we took a nice long drive Clatskanie where we had lunch at Humps Restaurant. We all had great meals that were almost too much for some of us. Diane’s Mom got a plain turkey sandwich …IMG_0143

Diane had a hot turkey sandwich …IMG_0144

And I had a chicken fried steak, two eggs over easy, hash browns, and toast …IMG_0145

As you can see, mine came on two (2) normal sized plates which had all the key points associated with a culinary challenge for normal people. I, however, have instituted portion control in my diet which means I can eat pretty much any size portion of anything that strikes my fancy, which this did. So, I ate everything on both plates and actually felt I had room for a piece of pie for dessert but Diane wouldn’t let me order one. She made us leave in the midst of congratulatory exclamations from all the waitresses in the restaurant. Apparently finishing one of those things is a rare thing, worthy of note. Eating a piece of pie on top of it would have been excellent.

Once done with lunch we went down Highway 30 towards Astoria for about 3 blocks then made a left on Highway 47 toward Vernonia. Out goal was to visit the Elk Preserve that’s out near Mist, Jewel, or Berkenfeld. None of us could remember exactly where it was, but that’s were we headed. The preserve, by the way, is where all the free elk in the greater NW go during elk season. They know when the shooting starts that this is the place to be and they show up by the hundreds. It’s quite impressive. Sadly, we never found the preserve, but we did pass a couple of small elk herds along the highway so it wasn’t a total waste of time. We saw a bunch of elk. Also saw a bunch of big and little cows, horses, goats, and donkeys. It was a regular circus out there on Highway 47.

After wandering around in the woods for about 3 hours, we arrived home right at 5 pm, the time I had an appointment with Misty who was interested in the Subaru. Sadly, Misty didn’t show up, but John was there, with Jeff, our son, and he said he’d take it. So, the Subaru is no longer for sale. John’s going to come get it tomorrow and drive it home whether or not he has a valid driver’s license. Then I’m going to go visit the water department and see if I can find out why our newly installed water meter reports that our water usage has tripled over the last bill. It’s not leaking on our side, so I can only believe that the new meter, which I was told is more sensitive than the old one, measures water in different units that the old one. The bill went from $132 to $370. Something’s terribly wrong in River City here and I’m going to find out what it is.

More Painting, American Legion, Trojans and Beavers

The painting is done, I think, but there’s still paint left over so I may have to do more. We’ll see. Oh wait, there’s still the underside of the upper and lower porches. And, maybe even the underside of the covered area where we store all the yard tools. I suppose it’s got a name, as porches go, but it’s just “the porch outside the kitchen door” to me. Maybe it’s the “kitchen porch”. I don’t know, doesn’t matter. It’s also a covered place where all the neighborhood cats come to get a free snack pretty much every day.

So, I guess the painting really isn’t done, is it? That’s rhetorical so you don’t have to answer, unless you really want to. I tend to answer rhetorical questions all the time.

Although the painting really isn’t done, as I initially reported, I did get a lot of it done, some of it from the top of some perilously tall ladders, and from the roof. Diane was concerned much of the time because I had to dig holes to make the ladder level on the less than level portion that goes around to the daylight basement. Or, cement blocks and rocks to level things out on the back stairs. The only casualty I had was when the ladder attachment I have creates a wider, more stable area at the top of the ladder, fell off and made an exciting amount of noise that caused Diane to rush onto the porch to see if I was prone or vertical. It missed me, by a hair, but I felt the wind.

This house has a large expanse of eaves that caused me great concern because it’s all overhead work. But, it’s roller work, not a brush. Incidentally, in case I didn’t mention it previously, all the other painting I’ve done was with a 2.5 inch brush, and a 3 inch roller. The bulk of it was done yesterday and it absolutely killed my poor little right arm. I know, that’s whining, but it’s true. Though it hurt, I continued anyway because I’m on a deadline. I don’t know what it is, but I’m on one.

After painting all day, I was allowed to sit for about 20 minutes before I had to go to the St. Helens Moose Lodge for a monthly American Legion meeting. I figured it was probably a good idea that I went to the meeting because I’m the Sgt. At Arms.

I know what you’re thinking … why would any reputable organization vote me into a position like that, right?  Well, no one wanted to do it so I volunteered. Now you’re thinking, “why would you volunteer for anything? Have you learned nothing over all these years?”

Apparently not, but this exalted position comes with a really nifty pin for my hat, denoting my position as a club officer. Don’t forget, too, that I’m our church council president. I volunteered for that one, too. Guess I’ll never learn, will I? My only comment regarding all of this is that both jobs need to be done and someone needs to do them. So, I do them. It gives me a false sense of power. Some day, if I keep volunteering, I’m going to get one of those jobs that comes with a hammer.

Now, about having an American Legion meeting at the Moose Club? We do it because they let us. The AM used to have its own building but they got rid of it for some reason, a long time before I joined the club. Seems like, maybe, the building was condemned. I’m not positive about that, but my friend, Doug, knows the answer. He told me tonight that he wastes a lot of time reading my entries here so maybe he’ll help me out. Maybe not.

I’m currently watching a recording of the USC Trojans vs. Oregon St. Beavers in a Pac-12 battle. Although I’m from Oregon, and logic says I should cheer for the Beavers, another line of logic says it makes far more sense to me to cheer for a team named after an animal that cuts down trees with its teeth rather than for a team named after a popular condom, that comes in a stunning array of festive colors, I’m told.

I jest, of course.

In truth, however, I just don’t like USC. It’s nothing personal. It’s just that I’m from Oregon. I’m also a Duck fan. And, I used to work at the Trojan Nuclear Power Plant, the same place Homer Simpson worked, so what do I know. I understand that Homer is just pretend, but everything that happens in Homer’s fake life is Oregon-based, including his place of employment. Sadly, the Trojan plant has been dismantled, and the cooling tower was destroyed, but it lives on in Homer’s life.

I’m done here … goodnight

911, Eye Doctor, Fultano’s, and a Laptop

Yesterday a neighbor was at our door when we got home, looking for some help to help pick Bob Up. He falls down once in a while and they usually call 911 for help getting him vertical. I told them I’d be more than happy to give it a shot, and it worked. We popped him right back on his feet. He was sternly lectured by his wife for trying to carry his sandwich out to the porch. I guess the bees got most of what was left by the time I got there.

This afternoon Diane went to the eye doctor for one of her checkups. Her tear ducts are on the fritz, which isn’t a good thing. While she was gone, I worked with Doug on the American Legion laptop that was doing all kinds of weird things. I knew immediately what the problem was, of course, being the semi-nerd I am, and got busy on the ‘fix’. Then we went to lunch at Fultano’s in Scappoose.

On the way, I texted Jack to see if he was working so he could go if he wasn’t working. He wasn’t, so I stopped to get him on the way. So, it was the Peal brothers vs. the Cate brothers, plus two others the Peals brought for reinforcement. Jack had never been to Fultano’s before, so it was a treat for him. It was all you can eat salad bar and pizza for $7.15, including a drink. Very good stuff.

Upon returning home, I finished cleaning up the laptop and sent Doug an email that it was ready. However, Doug doesn’t check his email very often any more, but I know he reads this, so, Doug, the laptop is done.

The only other thing I did today was start the ’73 RV, just to see if it would. It fired right up. Better than the ’79 ever starts. Interesting.

Later in the evening I got in trouble, but I don’t want to talk about it. Instead, I’m going to bed.