Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Dandy's Yogg

Woof, woof. This hasn't been the best of my summers. I'm no sissy, but this heat gets hard on a guy that can't take off his fur coat.

I think my Lady is as bored as I am. She's keeping that noisy picture thing going a lot, so it's no wonder she's bored. All these humans flip flopping and running around - makes me tired, except for the water stuff. Now that looks pretty interesting - seems as though nobody is around to rub soap all over you like in these gosh-awful baths. I don't know what a little fellow like me would do in that much water, but I'd sure like to find out.

It's been a little strange around here this summer. My Lady has spent more time than usual in her big chair and she kept cloths over her eyes a lot. She's not doing that any more and her eyes aren't very black , so I guess she's okay, but it was real strange when she spent a few nights sleeping in her chair. Of course, I stayed up to take care of her. Still, it's been nice to get back to normal - what ever that is.  After almost two years of living here, I still can't get that woman to keep decent bedtime hours. I've been very patient and polite but I'm considering other options.

I've had a lot of company - well my Lady has. They visit with me some and I try to carry on a decent conversation but it's pretty one-sided.

Well, I did  have one visitor of my own - that feisty little black and white terrier that was here one New Year's Eve, came again. She's a busy little thing but I was glad to have a visitor of my own. Actually, she was more interested with what was in my food bowl than sitting  down for for a talk!

I'm a guy that likes to keep my Lady safe from these wild varmints that prowl around here but these hasn't been much to do. I chased away a stray cat and sometime I can make the deer run. As  long as I'm in the house they just look my way and flop their ears. But when my Lady lets me out, boy do they run. They must be smarter than they look so they don't stay around when I'm outside taking care of the place.

Now let me tell you about another visitor. This is one I don't want to fool with - wouldn't do me any good to take it on, anyway, 'cause it just takes to the air and leaves.

I don't usually pay any attention to birds. They flit around all the time and don't seem to bother anything. They're not my type anyhow. We Dinmont Terriers are hunters of things like gophers, and badgers - all those things that like to dig burrows in the ground. So that's why I don't quiet know what to do with this big black bird that's hanging around my place.

A few days ago I saw it perched on a rail looking around and I figured he had no business here in my yard so I let out my mightiest bark and it left in a hurry. But it'd been at the bird bath. I was out later and I sniffed that scent pretty quick. I sniffed all around and stretched as far as I could but didn't learn much. Today my Lady let me roam a minute in the front yard and I knew it was here again. I couldn't seen it but I knew.  I don't like that big bird. Some ancient instinct is saying "beware"! So I just barked enough to alert my Lady that something was wrong and then casually turned around and headed for the front door like I'd had enough of the heat. I'm not sure I fooled her though, 'cause she followed me to the back door - and there it was.

Well folks, that's my summer so far. I have an idea that big bird is going to be around for awhile. I guess the deer will also. I'd rather have cats, though. They're more my size and I can count on them running in the right direction...away!


Sunday, August 5, 2012

Our Changing World

I opened a box of Kleenex this morning and was reminded of my surprise when I plucked them from the shelf with the "sale" sign. The box was smaller than in the past. Just another company cutting their cost by reducing the size of their product.

Have you bought graham crackers recently? They are  also in a new, reduced size. Not the box - the cracker. Not much smaller but just a wee bit. Multiply that by the thousands of boxes sold and I suppose there is a substantial saving for the company.

What's next? I understand there is a new 'fat-free' variety of pork & beans on the shelves. Is that the future for the beans we were raised on? The ones that have been around since the end of the War Between the States in 1865? Tell me it isn't so. That little tiny piece of fat mustn't  disappear in this new leaner world. Not after all these years.

Remember the candy bars that felt smaller - and were? Remember the one-pound coffee can that became 12 ounces? The result is the same. We're getting less for our money. Exactly where are are grocery prices going with this, and how can a consumer beat the system?

Actually, they can't without a handful of coupons, a calculator and lots of time. Small cans of veggies and fruits cost are only slightly lower priced than the regular size.  Yesterday I reached for a half gallon of milk, planning to save a little. Checked the price - $2.19. Looked at the gallon size - $2.49. For 30¢ more, I could get twice the amount, let part of it spoil and still come out ahead.

Then to keep from being terribly wasteful (all of us who grew up in the Great Depression days have trouble wasting anything) I will need to bake a sheet cake that uses sour milk, make cornbread and biscuits with sour milk instead of grabbing a slice of that $2.50 loaf, and then wash a bunch of baking dishes. Probably need to think of some way to use the left over home-baked breads, also.

Peal it thin..or not at all.
Today prices rise so fast, no one has to be ancient to remember ten pounds of potatoes priced at 75¢ or bananas for 29¢ a pound. Those wonderful summer melons filled the bins for only 99¢ and a shopper could dig for the largest on in the stack.

As for myself, I remember a 10¢ loaf of bread.  Even worse, although as a child we had mostly home cooked bread,  I remember talk about the wonderful  advent of sliced bread. In1930, Wonder bread was the first to use the new bread-slicing invention.

Grocery shopping is a challenge, but despite all there is to complain about, there's a good side to all the changes..

We don't wear clothing like this any more..
                                        We are not using wood cook stoves.
                                        We have air conditioning.
                                        For the rushed days, there are many
                                        already prepared foods at the grocer's.

 And there are large-sized drinks for the especially hot day.

This blog has been quiet for a while but plenty has been going on, My eyelids were beginning to cut off good vision so after months of squinting and complaining, I finally 'bit the bullet' and had surgery on both lids. An interesting procedure! There has been no pain and my eyesight was improved immediately. Also my balance. I am looking forward to the discoloration completely disappearing, but even that has not been very bad.

 I tackled eBay selling back in June. Being one of those persons who plunges in without carefully reading the instructions, I had a few problems at first. Everything soon worked out fine, even the ones that were not of my doing, but the first two weeks of attempting to get answers from a system that does not speak, was a challenge. And all those years of saving boxes for the day they would become useful paid off as I scrambling around hunting shipping containers  for the items I was fortunate to sell.  So far, I've reduced the size of my aluminum collection by over seventy items. My store of boxes was also reduced and I had to resort to begging for more, and have now filled the space vacated by the aluminum sales, with more boxes. However, I'm still doing eBay and with a little luck will use every one and beg for more.

Dandy has plans for voicing his experiences during all this. I suspect his summer has been very boring so far.