Friday, November 30, 2007

Deep Fried Pizza!

One double bacon and pepperoni deep fried pizza. Can I get a chocolate chip cookie dough and lard milkshake with that? And a side order of whale blubber cobbler.

Oh my goodness, this thing should come with a 10 day waiting period or a note from your physician saying that he has warned you that, if you do indeed eat a deep fried pizza, you will surely die.

Where's the rain?

It's almost December and my rain gauge hasn't had a drop in it since Veteran's Day.

We need a good winter if the Sacramento Valley and Yolo County in particular are going to have enough water for irrigation come the summer months ahead.

Two years of below average rainfall is showing in the levels at Indian Valley Reservoir, the main source of irrigation water for farmers in Yolo County. Ranchers are hurting too, the stock water ponds that collect rainfall runoff are long since dry and many ranchers are hauling water to their herds up in the hills.

We have seen dry Novembers that preceded wet Decembers and good rainfall years but I am getting worried.

Google searches, I'm number one

Not that too many people are scanning the internet for Miley Cyrus Green Vegetables, but you never know.

I am also a big hit with those searching for Best Christmas Presents.

Update, I am also number one for Hannah Montana vs Metallica

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Football on Thursdays. What a country!

I watched on Thanksgiving day as my Cowboys slaughtered the New York Jets and tonight I made it home just in time to see the start of the 10 and1 Cowboys take on the 10 and 1 Packers.
It is just into the fourth quarter and the Cowboys are up three.

What a game.

Farve goes out in the second quarter, but Rodgers comes off the bench as goes bananas. Great looking QB from Cal.

I have to watch myself, TO just dropped a sure TD and I may have a stroke.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Did you watch the YouTube Republican Debate tonight?

I didn't. I had my small group Bible study that I lead on Wednesday night and to tell you the truth, I probably couldn't have sat through questions from stuffed animals being asked to the potential leader of the free world. I guess a Hillary operative planted a question in the debate about gay soldiers, but hey it is CNN after all. I'm surprised Anderson Cooper didn't have a live feed from Hugo Chavez asking why Republicans are so evil.

If you want a funny presidential debate, Saturday Night Live is still running right?

Do you know who I want to moderate the next Republican Presidential Debate?

My friend Stig.

Yes his name is Stig, he lives up in Northern California and when he isn't doing day work as a cowboy he is packing his string of mules and horses into the back country. He doesn't follow politics very closely, but he served in the Army and he knows what he wants from his government and he has zero tolerance for BS of any kind.

A typical question from Stig would be as follows;

Why the hell do we spend all that money on office buildings full of government employees pushing paper from one stack to the other and I can't get anyone to fix the potholes on the highway?

Thats a great question, first let me say that you should have your roads fixed, but there is a real need for government in our nation, the jobs that those government employees do is vital to delivering services to the puplic by way of ..

Hey, I asked you a question. The problem is holes in the damn road, The folks who fix them holes say they don't have any money to do it, but instead you pay money to a bunch of people who used to eat paste when they went to elementary school, to write, sign, stamp and file a bunch of worthless papers down in some cubicle prairie, office building.

Stig, its alright if I call you Stig?


Stig, those folks do a job that needs to be done, maybe those people who work in that office are busy filing the budget appropriations to get the federal highway funds.....

The only job I want the federal government to do is to protect our nation, deliver the mail, fix my road and otherwise stay the hell out of my life.

The next question is why in the name of John Wayne is that S.O.B. Osama Bin Laden still breathin' my air?

You get my point. Real questions from someone who might just stomp a gravy hole in your forehead if you don't answer his question.

Somehow, Anderson Cooper doesn't seem to have that kind of presence when he's moderating a debate. But he does have great hair.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Childish? Petty? Hilarious? You Bet!

I have a nutcracker in my kitchen drawer, but you can rest assured that I will soon own two.

Again, I apologize for being childish, but c'mon, you know its funny.

Islam, the peaceful, tollorent, religion strikes again.

You know, every time a not so bright, or just plain crazy 'Christian' says or does something stupid or violent in the name of 'Christianity', I am the first one to say he's an idiot and a terrible example to those in need of grace and forgiveness.

But that is just who I am. I do not hold back any satire or anger because the person saying or doing something stupid calls him or herself a Christian.

But where is the outrage at the parade of honor killings, beating and jailing female rape victims, rioting and murder in response to publishing cartoons in a newspaper, and now a British teacher is in jail and facing 40 lashes for the terrible crime of...

wait for it....

Allowing one of her seven year old students to name his Teddy Bear 'Mohamed'.

I can't wait for CAIR to trot out some dolt to explain how naming a child's toy, after the child's own name mind you, constitutes an offense worthy of imprisonment and 40 lashes.

The good news is the offending bear has been seized by the Sudanese authorities, no word on if the bear will undergo any punishment.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Here is some not so good news

Iran builds longer-range missile.

"The construction of the Ashura missile with a range of 2000km is one of the accomplishments of the ministry of defence," Defence Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar was quoted as saying.

The weapon's range is sufficient to put US bases in the Middle East and Iran's arch enemy Israel within reach.

The crazy guy in charge over there really must like twisting the tails of the US and Israel.

Careful Mr. Ahmadinejad, one day you might just convince enough of the right people that you really are a threat. Those 2,000 km missiles will not do you much good when you are wearing your palace for a hat.

But you don't care about that, anything that brings the return of the hidden 12th Imam is ok with you, right?

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Having children is selfish?

Is this what passes for enlightened liberal thought these days?
Had Toni Vernelli gone ahead with her pregnancy ten years ago, she would know at first hand what it is like to cradle her own baby, to have a pair of innocent eyes gazing up at her with unconditional love, to feel a little hand slipping into hers - and a voice calling her Mummy.

But the very thought makes her shudder with horror.

Because when Toni terminated her pregnancy, she did so in the firm belief she was helping to save the planet.

Incredibly, so determined was she that the terrible "mistake" of pregnancy should never happen again, that she begged the doctor who performed the abortion to sterilise her at the same time.

He refused, but Toni - who works for an environmental charity - "relentlessly hunted down a doctor who would perform the irreversible surgery.

Finally, eight years ago, Toni got her way.

At the age of 27 this young woman at the height of her reproductive years was sterilised to "protect the planet".

Incredibly, instead of mourning the loss of a family that never was, her boyfriend (now husband) presented her with a congratulations card.

While some might think it strange to celebrate the reversal of nature and denial of motherhood, Toni relishes her decision with an almost religious zeal.

"Having children is selfish. It's all about maintaining your genetic line at the expense of the planet," says Toni, 35.

An almost religious zeal? She is the very definition of a religious zealot. Her religion is environmental activism and she worships at the church of global warming.

Toni was happy, at last, with fellow environmentalists who shared her philosophy. But when she was 25, disaster struck.

"I discovered that despite taking the Pill, I'd accidentally fallen pregnant by my boyfriend.

"I was horrified. I knew straight away there was no option of having the baby.

"I went to my doctor about having a termination, and asked if I could be sterilised at the same time.

"This time it was a male doctor. I remember saying to him: 'I want to make sure this never happens again.'

"He said: 'You may not want a child, but one day you may meet a man who does'. He refused to consider it.

"I didn't like having a termination, but it would have been immoral to give birth to a child that I felt strongly would only be a burden to the world.

"I've never felt a twinge of guilt about what I did, and have honestly never wondered what might have been.

"After my abortion, I was more determined than ever to pursue sterilisation.

Here is the rub my darling, you decided to have an abortion, that is your choice, not one that I agree with, but it is yours none the less, your not having a child means absolutely nothing to this world. Absolutely zero. Why do you consider yourself so important to the grand scheme of life on this planet that your child would be a burden on it? Today in India alone around 72,000 babies were born. Today. Why is your child a problem? Why do you think you are so darned important?

Because the environmentalists tell you your are. Because they tell us if we all trade in out SUVs for a Prius the world would be a tangibly better place to live. What a load of self delusional crap you are buying into. You are not important to the well being of this world, sorry to break that to you, but buying compact florescent light bulbs because they have a 'earth friendly' sticker on them doesn't mean a thing to the earth. You cannot conserve your way out of a problem when everyone else is going full bore in the other direction.

The world is not a zero sum game. If you change every light bulb in your house, sell your car, buy a bicycle, walk to the store and grow your own vegetables in your garden, that does not change the fact that China and India are just now hitting their industrial stride when it comes to building infrastructure. Coal fired power plants are being built everywhere, new roads being paved to make way for the new wave of private car ownership that is sweeping through the second world's economies.

China and India have doubled their private car ownership from 1995 to 2000. As the global economy grows, these two nations will soon be using more energy that the United States. Is that a good thing? Not for the environment. There is no EPA in India or China. They are polluting this planet at a tremendous rate.

If you want to stop global pollution, talk to China and India, don't try to make me feel guilty because I have children. China is the worlds second largest importer of oil and by 2010 it should become number one. China will spend about 3.7 TRILLION dollars to increase it power generating capabilities in the next twenty years, mostly from coal. How much carbon will that burn? About 11.4 GIGATONNES of CO2 emissions by 2030.

I don't know how much CO2 my kids will be burning by 2030, but I am sure it will not be 11.4 gigatonnes.

I do agree that we are heading towards a major crap storm of pollution and an energy crisis, but one person having one child somewhere in the UK? It does not matter one little bit.

If the responsibility of having children is too much for you, its better that you don't have them. I would hate to be raised in a home where I was looked upon as a burden to the planet, not a blessing from God.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Game feed at Pine Flats

Just when I thought it was safe to try and cinch my belt back to where it was before Thanksgiving, the family and I went to a picnic and game feed up the Capay Valley. Everyone brings game meat that they harvested this past year and what a spread it was. Oh my goodness, wild pig sausage, deer meat, fries potatoes, sawmill gravy and a table full of deserts.

I am stuffed tighter than Britney's outfit from the MTV awards show.

I love getting out in the country and spend time with our friends. Today was a particularly good time to do just that. The setting is beneath a grove of pines and oaks a few miles off the beaten path. About twenty pickups and suvs parked under the trees. While the kids played and rode atvs around the camp, the adults talked and swapped stories. Our kids played with a friend's new terrier puppy and my wife and I caught up on old times with our friends.

Before the sun went down the wood was piled up and soon a circle of chairs surrounded the campfire. I don't know why, the food tastes better when you are sitting around a campfire with good friends.

Today was one of those simple yet wonderful days that happen every so often and you can let them rush by unappreciated, or you can take a minute to try and remember the smell of the campfire, the image of the kids roasting marshmallows and the sweet sound of your wife laughing.

Yep, today was a good one.

Friday, November 23, 2007

The man who shot Liberty Valance

The little red light on my Dish DVR is glowing right now. I am recording "The man who shot Liberty Valance" one of favorite movies of all time.

Ted Turner may be a horses rear, but he has a great movie channel.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Why don't we have egg hunts on Thanksgiving?

Good question, glad I brought it up.

I know that one of the main reasons we have an Easter Bunny and Easter egg hunts is the mixing of two traditions, one secular, the spring equinox celebration, and one religious, the celebration of Christ's resurrection on the third day after his crucifixion. While spring is the time for baby rabbits and chicks and all thing cute and cuddly, every one associates birds, usually turkeys or geese with Thanksgiving. Why not have a Thanksgiving egg hunt?

Dye them with the colors of the NFL teams playing that year, or just go with Blue and Silver, Dallas and Detroit host Thanksgiving games every year.

You may need a character to hide the eggs like the Easter Bunny does, so how about The Thanksgiving Wampanoag. I know that doesn't roll off the tongue like Easter Bunny, but I'm open to suggestions. You could go with the 'The Turkey Day Puritan Separatist' but that is quite long as well. What about 'The Thanksgiving Turkey', now thats a winner. It makes sense, a bird hiding eggs, and they can look cute if you use the right turkey suit. I am not sure how the little ones will feel about waking up Thanksgiving morning to find eggs hidden by a turkey that they will be eating that afternoon, I may have to work out a few kinks on this one.

Besides, its cold on Thanksgiving morning and I like to sleep in and watch the Macy's Parade in bed. You know what? Scratch the whole idea, I'm sorry I brought it up.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, try to realize how truly blessed you are, compared to most on this planet and try not be too upset by the one relative at the house today who really knows how to push your buttons.

Cold turkey sandwiches on dinner rolls with little mayo and a glass of cold milk taste better than what ever they are serving at County jail after you slug you uncle Marty in the nose.

Thankfully yours,
The Yolo Cowboy

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Is Price a Barrier to Eating More Fruits and Vegetables for Low-Income Families?

But not according to a new study.
"The new dietary guidelines, which include more dark green vegetables, orange vegetables and legumes, are based on solid science and have the potential to help protect Americans from some of the leading causes of death, including stroke, heart disease and diet-related cancers," said lead author Diana Cassady, an assistant professor of public health sciences and researcher at the UC Davis Center for Advanced Studies in Nutrition and Social Marketing. "But, we need to take the next step to ensure that all consumers can actually afford to follow the guidelines. Low-income families have less discretionary income than more affluent families. Buying the recommended amounts of fruits and vegetables would take up a large proportion, perhaps an unacceptable proportion, of their food budgets."
The barrier to eating fruits and vegetables is, well, fruits and vegetables.

Some folks just don't like them. Take my family.
We are not poor, we do not take a vacation to Hawaii every year, or any year for that matter, but we pay our bills and live comfortably. If I did not do half the grocery shopping there would be one bag of Fuji or Gala apples in the crisper drawer of the fridge and a five pound sack of potatoes in our pantry. That would be the extent of our family's fruit and vegi consumption.

I love vegetables. When I shop, I fill up the crisper. The darker green the better, spinach, mustard greens, artichokes, broccoli even brussel sprouts, I enjoy them all.

When I make a batch of greens, I make enough for myself because I know the rest of family will turn their noses up at it. I get a collective ewww out of them as I serve up my sprouts with dinner.

If you are poor, its a pretty safe bet you are not well educated, and you may have some self discipline issues to boot. Not a group to that makes the wisest decision right?

So if I have a choice spending my $1.08 on a 13 ounce bag of -

Blazin' Buffalo and Ranch Doritos

or two bunches of celery at 47 cents each

or three pounds of oranges at 39 cents a pound

Guess what choice 90 percent of people will make?
Which is why Frito Lay's revenue is an astounding 8.5 Billion dollars, thats billion with a B.

Look, if you gave away free broccoli at the food stamp offices, I would bet that one person in five would bother to take it home. So what does our government funded study find as the answer to this problem?
You guessed it, spend more tax dollars!

Her study suggests a combination of strategies, including distributing discount coupons for fruits and vegetables; increasing food stamp allocations; promoting low-cost sources of produce such as farmers' markets, community-supported agriculture and warehouse grocery centers or bulk stores; and counseling consumers on household budgeting approaches that could help them purchase more vegetables.

The word promote means spend tax dollars by the way.

Here is my solution, take the money we are going to spend to 'promote' farmers markets and bulk stores and hire Frito Lay to make and market a new product that uses fruits and vegetables as the main ingredients. If that fails, start subsidizing coupons so if you buy three bunches of celery, you get a free bag of Blazin Buffalo and Ranch Doritos.

Or you could just face the fact that most people choose refined sugar and salt over healthy foods.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Building a new home in Yolo County?

You had better sit in on this.

People who are architects, engineers, designers, contractors, or others who perform work subject to building codes within the state should be aware that the new building code, based on 2006 International Building Code, is significantly different from the 1997 Uniform Building Code.

Each training session will focus on the transition to the 2006 International Building Code non-structural provisions, known also as the 2007 California Building Code.

As the new 2006 IBC goes into effect, homeowners might be caught in a very bad place, between an inspector who is just learning the new code and a contractor who has been building houses for years and doesn't think the new code will be any different. You might be spending lots of your hard earned money and precious time dealing with 'gray areas'.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Snort worthy

The wonders of professional make up.

Stolen from blah blah blog

I truly regret being so petty and juvenile on a Sunday, especially as I head out the door for church, but I will add this post to the long list of things I need to pray for forgiveness about.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Fence building 101

Start with a stack of 4" well drilling pipe about the size of an Escalade, two pallets of concrete sacks, a half a mile of string, a tractor with a post hole digging attachment (yes that is cheating, and no I am not apologizing) a magnetic level, a cutting torch and a portable welder, 1,000 t-posts, 6,000 feet of 60" woven mesh wire and you have the basic ingredients for my fence.

I have been working on this for a while and I have almost all the pipe in the ground for my corner and gate posts. As luck would have it, my friend had some spare time at work while they refit the plant and he has a portable welder. He has been busy welding the cross bracing on my corner posts and gate posts. He will catch up to me by next week, so today my son and I laid out the long run on the side of my main pasture. I now have another 30 posts to set in concrete on the long side and another 16 on the back side.

After all the steel pipe in welded and ready to for pulling, that is when the fun starts. Banging in the t-posts is my least favorite part of fence building. If you have ever woke up in the middle of the night with your hands numb and tingling, you know what I am talking about. After the t-posts, its time for the 60" woven field fence.

Wish me luck, I should be done by April. If I don't buy a condo and forget the country life by then. Maybe I can sell my cows and buy a labradoodle and start hanging out at the free trade coffee shops listening to 'progressive' music while I read the latest issue of The New Republic.

Probably not, see you in April.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Blue Ridge Berryessa National Conservation Area -Eco Babble of the first order.

For the life of me I do not understand why some people need to designate public and private lands as National Conservation Areas? I wonder if it has anything to do with getting a better seat at the table of power and better access to federal dollars, or is it an ingenious solution to a non existent problem. Just listen to this.

The Blue Ridge Berryessa Region is a mosaic of over 800,000 acres of public and private lands located in Solano, Napa, Lake, Colusa and Yolo counties. The public lands are managed by the Mendocino National Forest, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, California Department of Fish and Game, the UC Reserve System and local parks of various counties and agencies. Much of the private lands are large intact ranches that make up the working landscape.

The region is a result of plate tectonics with blind trust faults; steeply titled sandstones and shales that make up the Blue Ridge and Cortina Ridge; and a Franciscan m lange containing serpentine soils that were once part of the ocean crust. Putah and Cache creeks flow through this diverse place giving it life. Blue oak woodlands, chaparral plant communities, and the rare and endemic plants found on serpentine soils together with tule elk, black bear, mountain lion, bald eagles, falcons, osprey, river otters many more animals and birds that live in the oak woodlands make up this biological Hot Spot.

The large, active, private ranches and farms within the region represent our agricultural heritage. To protect that agricultural heritage we must protect the land and the water that they need; help to ensure their economic viability; protect an agricultural infrastructure; and train future ranchers and farmers. It is important to who we are as a People that we are successful in that effort. It helps to define our sense of place.

I'm not sure where to start. Just how will any government designation of a private citizen's land make more rain fall on his ranch? I know all about the Blue Ridge, the sun sets behind it every night, about three miles from my house. I have ridden the Blue Ridge on horseback, hunted on foot and driven almost every inch of the dirt roads and trails that snake along its spine.

The private land that makes up the area in question are cattle ranches, the water on these ranches comes almost exclusively from rainfall. Plain and simple, rainfall. Not Putah Creek or Cache Creek, just rain falling from the sky or maybe if you were luck enough to find ground water at the base of the ridge, you could put a small water well there. I would also like to know who is going to "train future farmers and ranchers", train them to do what, strap on Birkenstocks?

What Bob Schneider, president of Tuleyome, a local environmental group wants is access. He wants access to hike the Blue Ridge from one end to the other. From Berryessa to Cache Creek. There is only one problem, some of that land is private. Tuleyome has found one way to gain access to private land, they bought it.

Hooray for Mr. Schneider, really, I am all for it. Their group now owns the Ireland ranch. Hike to your hearts content. Just don't try to tell the people that their land needs some designation or it will be threatened by development. That is why we have local County zoning, the cattle ranches on the Blue Ridge will never be developed, its zoned Ag preserve and contracted into the Williamson act. Oh and its so steep that if you roll a rock off the top of the ridge it won't stop until hits highway 16.

For all Mr. Schneider's eloquence when it comes to writing about the Blue Ridge, just keep this is mind. He wants access to private land for his group's hobby.
This is straight from the Yolo Hiker website.

Aren't you getting just a little political in advocating trails and public access?

A: I don't think so...I think there is a big difference between politics and passion. I am really passionate about public access and trails. Public access to natural areas within our own watersheds adds to our understanding of the world and appreciation for where we live. For this, the Farm Bureau hates me. Well, that, and the fact that their leadership has exclusive use of the public lands on Berryessa Peak (vis-a-vis friends that own adjacent property), and they hate that I'm advocating for public access to the public lands. I take this as a compliment and sign I must be doing something right.

I also believe that people should work together to come up with solutions for public access and land purchases. If there were no advocates, there would be no trails! Politics is a fact of life, but rest assured, you won't see ranting emails with headlines like "Act now, or your mountains will be destroyed by evil capitalist pigs!" More likely you will see emails like "Hey, we are having a hike this weekend", or "Your input needed on planning effort".

Public access to public lands? More like public access to private land to get to other public land, and private landowners be damned.

If Tuleyome wants trails through the chemise brush on the Blue Ridge and money to buy land for access, Bob can hold a car wash, or bake sale.

This seems to be a familiar screed with me these days, but if you want to recreate, go do it, don't ask the rest of the tax payers to pay for it!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Hannah Montana fan club sued!

Having never been the epicenter of teenage culture, I am not sure how one goes about avoiding the pitfalls of super stardom. I wish I had some sage words of wisdom for Miley Cyrus, aka Hannah Montana, but other than not taking hair styling tips from your father, you're on your own girl. If you don't who Hannah Montana is you obviously don't have any pre-teen or teenage girls in your house. Either that or you don't own a tv with more than six channels on it.
Thousands of disappointed Hannah Montana fans are taking legal action against the teen sensation's fan club after promises to find them priority seats for the singer's much-hyped concerts fell through.

According to a lawsuit filed in Nashville, Tenn., fan club bosses knew tickets wouldn't meet demands, but they still offered devotees choice tickets as part of a membership perk.

Hannah Montana is a TV character played by Miley Cyrus, the 14-year-old daughter of country singer Billy Ray Cyrus. Her summer Best of Both Worlds Tour sold out almost instantly.
I on the other hand I do have a pre-teen living under my roof. I also have Dish network and believe me, I know who Hannah Montana is. I have been suffering from an overdose of Billy Ray Cyrus' offspring for about a year or so. Sure she's cute and she on the Disney Channel, how much harm could she do to America's youth?

What if Milley/Hannah starts going out with a guy on her show who wears a Mullet?

Pretty soon all the girls in Junior High tell their boyfriends that if they want to go out on a date, they need to be rockin' the Mullet like surfer boy here.

Then those girls grow up and move on to high school, and one day this chuclehead knocks on your door wanting to take your daughter to the prom.

Give Billy Ray's daughter ten years and the guy who comes to your house to fix your furnace will be looking like this.

Lets stop the madness now.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

"There was no sexual anything involved"

Uncle Kracker says he didn't do anything wrong.

Um, yea. Right.

(Kracker) was arrested by local authorities after a 26-year-old woman approached an off-duty police officer in a nightclub to report Shafer had put his hand up her skirt. He was charged with second-degree forcible sex but pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault in an effort to avoid a trial.

"Assault is a far cry from sexual battery. You can either wait a year, spend 150 grand, go to trial, make more of a debacle out of it, or you can get it over with."
Yea, or could stop putting your hands where they don't belong, or you could stop hitting the clubs, drunk out your skull like you were 19, or you could just grow up and learn that the world has rules and no matter how much money you have, you still have to abide by them.

Hey if you run into Lindsey, Paris, Nichole or Britney while your in rehab, pass the word on.
Grow up, these lessons just get harder as you grow older. There is nothing more expensive than regret.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Woodland's own Dustin Pedroia wins Rookie of the Year

Atta pepper! as they say in Boston. I am actually not certain they say that in Boston, but one of the guys I used work with said it all the time and he was a chowder head.

Anyway you slice it, Dustin Perdoia is hotter than two rats (makin' sweet love) in a wool sock. (that was another colorful metaphor he used, I had to clean it up, but it works)

Pedroia ran away with the AL Rookie of the Year award today.

I hope Dustin keeps scrapping and playing full speed ahead. That's how he made it to show and that is how he helped his team to a World Series sweep.

Way to go Dustin, if you ever thought about doing a short interview with a regular joe who would love to know what its like to be a regular joe who happens to be hotter than the two rodents mentioned above, shoot me an email.
( You never know unless you ask, right?)

Attack of the killer sheep.

You should have seen them, running at me, yellow fangs gnashing, oh the horror.
Well, not really.

With the late fall and warm weather, the alfalfa around the country has been growing well and it is a good time to be a sheep man. With the good feed just sitting around going to waste, most farmer don't want to risk trying to squeeze out another cutting this late in the fall, the sheep guys are putting up portable electric fence as fast as they can and feeding off the hay fields. With the exception of one neighbor, I am surrounded by little woolly field ornaments making sheep noises well into the evening hours.

I don't have a problem with sheep or the sheep ranchers. Well, maybe just a little one, I did see 'The Sheepman' with Glen ford a few times.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Veteran's Day 2007

A blustery Veteran's Day in Yolo County finds many American Flags snapping in the swift North wind. The sky that just a day ago was gray and dark with a soft soaking rain has been replaced by the clear deeper blue of a bright fall day. Puddles are disappearing, the soft ground will soon become firm enough to walk across without leaving footprints and the hawks are out in the fields, soaring aloft and diving down on their prey. November in Yolo County, my favorite time of year.

There are many wonderful stories written today about the debt we owe to those who served, fought and especially to those who gave their lives in the defense of freedom. In wars both here on our soil and in far away lands in places that don't make it into history text books.

As I sit in the quiet warmth of my home today, watching football with my son, I find it so easy to forget that today in Afghanistan, Iraq and around the world there are soldiers strapping on their gear, getting their orders from their squad leaders or company commander and heading back out to stand a post or to go out on patrol.

What they would give to be home today with their family enjoying a relaxing day in the familiar comforts they once knew. Reading the blog entries of some on the front lines, I get the feeling that while they would love to see their families and feel the love that comes from being home, I get the feeling they would want to get back to their second family very soon.

The bond between veterans is amazing, forged by common experiences that we as civilians just can't understand. It is both instant and lifelong. I have listened to two veterans talking and as soon as they found out they share a mutual friend, or were stationed at the same backwater base, they instantly connect and those of us who did not serve are left outside of their conversation. And while I cannot feel that same bond with these men and women, my admiration for their service is something I am not sure they can understand. I send care packages and write cards and letters, I also thank any uniformed solider I see. It is the very least I can do, and it does not begin to explain how much I respect and admire these Americans.

I will leave you with a portions of a letter written by a soldier today, Veteran's day 2007.

As the veterans of World War II pass too quickly into history, their ranks are being replaced by a new "greatest generation." The war on terrorism is creating veterans at a rate not seen in decades.

Yet the military is much smaller now than during World War II, leading some analysts to posit that a rift exists between soldiers and citizens and that those making sacrifices on the battle front are disconnected from the society whose freedoms they defend. The American people are oblivious to the war, they claim, as well as to the men and women who are fighting it. Some have even suggested that the only way to close the gap is to return to conscription.

But these observers of the social scene have never served in Iraq.
Those of us overseas know that "support the troops" is more than a slogan. Here we are besieged by what my master sergeant calls "paper love," the cards, letters, posters and other gestures of support sent by people across America.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Anti-gravity hotel opens, pets ok.

No word on the breakfast buffet. That could get messy.

I just hit 25,000 visitors to the Roughstock Journal.

For the life of me, I don't why anyone reads my blog. Really, I don't.

But I would like to extend my sincere appreciation for all who have left a comment, positive or negative on the pages of the Roughstock Journal.

I hope you will continue to stop by from time to time and leave your feedback.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Lions for Lambs - soon to be in the 5.99 DVD bin at Wal-Mart?

I was not planning on spending $1o to see what I was sure would be 90 minutes of dialogue written by , and it seems I made a wise decision.

I was saying to myself not 10 minutes in "Shoot me please for taking these tickets." This was not entertaining and actually kind of pissed me off. The tickets were free, but they came at the price of boredom and an assualt on my intelligence and patriotism.
If you hate America this is a movie for you. I wouldn't watch this again, even when it comes on TBS years from now.

There are so many heroic stories from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, why does Hollywood want to keep remaking PlatoonII?

In five, or ten years, we will start to hear the stories coming out of this war, not all will be positive. There will be people who have been changed forever by what they saw, some will deal with those emotions in different ways and some will need our help with fitting back into society. We owe them that, and much, much more.

There will also many stories of heroism, and bravery beyond our comprehension. I hope that the stories of everyday soldiers doing the impossible, when many at home were telling them they had already lost, will not take 50 years to make it onto the silver screen.

Where is the 'Saving Private Ryan' for this generation, and this war?

Those stories are out there, the people who lived through them might not be willing to tell them just yet. When I have sat down with veterans, some of them don't want to relive those terrible events. Those memories are too private, too emotional to bring up. I just hope they find a way to do so. I also hope someone out there will set aside their personal politics and tell a great story that people deserve to hear.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

If you don't laugh at this, check your pulse.


Bicycle paths, if you want them, you pay for them.

How about we tackle the issue of bicycle lanes in Yolo County like we do everything else in California, a new tax.
Bicycle advocates were before the County Board of Supervisors Tuesday pleading with them to improve what they called dangerous traveling conditions along County Road 99. "That section is dangerous," said Paul Erickson, a bicyclist commuter who logged more than 4,000 miles on that stretch of highway this year in his commute from Woodland to Davis. "I've had several close calls, especially at night." The group of bicyclists was mostly comprised from a group called Davis Bicycles!, a bicycle advocacy organization that promotes the rights and safety of bicycle enthusiast in Yolo County......

"The thing that really pisses me off," said Jim Watson, a founding member of Davis Bicycles!, "is this has been an on again-off again issue for 14 years."

If the 'Davis Bicycles!' want to ride on publicly funded bike paths only a very, very small percentage of the County's population uses, then they should shoulder the burden of building and maintaining them. Bicycle paths are expensive to build and maintain. The two dollar a year bike license just doesn't raise enough cash. How about a $200 per year tax on every bicycle sold in Yolo County?

Gasp! Are you crazy? That is outrageous! Why should I pay for a place to enjoy my recreation? I ride on the public roads and I want a six foot wide, well lit, freshly asphalted surface between my house and my work, oh and Lake Berryessa, its pretty up there. And I don't want to pay a dime for it. I pay taxes and that should be enough.

OK, I enjoy riding my Quads with my family. The closest OHV (off highway vehicle) park is located above Folsom. And guess what, I have to pay sales tax on my quad ($8,000 x .0725= $580) and then license my ATV every year @ $25 and I cannot ride it public roads! I have to drive an hour to Prairie City OHV, or take my chances sharing the steep and windy dirt roads with the rafting buses over low water bridge to access the BLM land an hour away. Where is my place to ride near my house?

I know, I know, bicycling is healthy and its fun and its a great workout. So is a spin class at the gym or a stationary bike. Why do I have to subsidize the entertainment of such a small group of citizens? And don't give me the story about how you use it to commute to work, I drive from Woodland to Davis everyday and I can count on one hand the people I see heading to work on their bicycles. Take a bus if you don't want to drive, I already subsidize that.

It would be like demanding the County build me an ATV park. I'm sure I could fill up a board of supervisors meeting with over 100 off road enthusiasts who would love it, why don't we demand our place to ride?

Because we are normal folks who work all week and play hard on the weekends, we don't demand the other 95% of our neighbors who don't participate in our sport pay our way.

Oh and by the way, if you want us to share the road, how about you guys start obeying the rules of the road. A stop sign is just as valid for you as it is for me. I know it sucks to have to come to a stop and it takes more energy to get started again than if you just blow through the intersection, but you're the one in Spandex fella, not me.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Driver's licenses for illegal aliens, not so popular

Yea, but, but, but what will you do when you get hit by an illegal alien in your car? We won't have a license number to put down on the police report.
What about that?

Intriguing argument isn't it?
Not really, and not very popular it seems.

How about send them back to their own county to crash into their own citizens?

Nah, to simple and it doesn't spend enough taxpayer money, I'll have to come up with something better.

Hey, you voted for crazy, you got crazy.

It has been 364 days since the Democrats took control of Congress and their list of earth shaking accomplishments is ............ Hmmm, give me a minute....... Oh yea, they increased the minimum wage,,,,,, and they funded the war in Iraq, oh but I thought they were going to stop the war and bring the troops home?

Well, lets just say they haven't done much, but the Republicans are going to help the Dems out by not letting them back out of their promises.

Impeach Cheney, yea thats the ticket!

Monday, November 05, 2007

Why not just throw your money into a blender with some Bisquick and make waffles?

I find it hard to believe that 22,000 Americans gave Ron Paul 3.5 million dollars today. I am pretty sure that will be the high water mark of his candidacy, but 3.5 million is a good bit of cash for someone who is polling at 3.5% in just one state. He is doesn't even make the top five nationally.

So all you Ron Paul supporters, all 22,000 of you, rejoice and know that today you have struck a blow to the heart of injustice and warmongering, and you struck the bell of liberty to free the American people from the enslavement of the noecons.....

Or you just blew all you money on shiny yard signs and bumper stickers that will be in trashcans across the country on January 6th after super duper Tuesday.

C'mon, give that money to your church or a homeless center or at least run it through the shredder and spread it around the attic to increase the R-value of you home insulation. But giving it to Ron Paul?

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Why politicians suck.

If I knew what Hillary Clinton stood for, I am sure I would oppose it. The problem is, I can't tell what she is for and what she is against. Maybe I'm not smart enough to recognize the nuanced and subtle differences the Junior Senator from New York uses when answering a yes or no question.

If this was just a problem found in a single politician, that would be one thing, but the problem is epidemic among politicians. Both Republicans and Democrats seem to be infected. No matter what office you are campaigning for, from school board to President of the United States, you will have paid consultants and campaign managers telling you what not to say.

Every so often, someone breaks from that strategy to tell the people what he or she truly believes. If that person has enough personal character and reputation behind them, they can pull it off. Those folks are few and far between.

Wouldn't it have been great for Senator Clinton to answer the drivers licenses for illegal aliens this way?

"Tim, I support giving drivers licenses to illegal aliens because New York state law says that when you receive your drivers license you are handed a voter registration card, its the law. That would be great for me and the Democratic party Tim, just Imagine 500,000 new voters who were just given an official government issued ID and driver license by a Democratic Governor, who do you think they will vote for Tim?"

Thursday, November 01, 2007

TeleTownhall Meeting

I am currently listening to a live by phone town hall meeting hosted by Congressman Wally Herger. So far it is about what you would expect, calls about illegal immigration, health care is rural communities, and so forth. I am not sure what good these calls do, but it does give you a chance to speak with your Congress critter without forking out $250 for a rubber chicken dinner.