Notes from an Eastbound plane

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Flying makes me thoughtful. Herewith, my thoughts from some seven hours in the air in which I also lost three time zones.

Oddly, today, this is a New Mexico blog written by a Californian visiting Florida.

GeoGRAPHIC!

Thoughts from the skies:

1) Noise cancelling headphones. Da bomb. How did I ever live without them? Best Christmas gift evar!

2) Traveling to warm vacation spots while Spring Break is in swing means you will be required to endure obnoxious teenagers. A LOT of obnoxious teenagers.

3) Exit row window seat. Yes. Leg room. View. Ability to move. Middle seat empty…even better.

4) Southwest’s new boarding process? May as well go back to plastic numbers because that’s basically what it is again. 1-30, 31-60, 61-90, blah, blah, blah…been there, done that. Only this time with letters!

5) Breakfast at home…always a good idea. Even more so when flying for the WHOLE day. Even if it is just tomato soup, it’s a good idea.

6) Comfy pants = happy traveler. The ones that are like two sizes too big and I just don’t care.

7) Pocket full of tissues is a good thing. Especially in allergy season. Those little square napkins that come with your drink don’t cut it. It was a last minute thought but proved to be the best decision all day.

8) Who is Southwest kidding with these “100 calorie” snack packs. Give me eight! I don’t care, I’m HUNGRY! Turns out tomato soup wasn’t enough to last all day. It got me to…oh, San Antonio then I wanted some real eats.

9) Why don’t you get the whole can of soda on the plane anymore?

And finally…

10) Just so you know…Ethel Merman has been reincarnated as a toddler. Yes, a solid hour of singing with the pitch and tone of a three year old and the gusto of Ethel herself. At one point the child hit a “Laaaaaaaaaa” and held it there. Which brings us back to #1.

Noise cancelling headphones. *Highly* recommended.

Peculiarity

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You know, at this point in my life, I should no longer be shaken by oddity in the world. I mean, in my few years on the planet, I’ve seen a lot of weird sh*t.

But still, life can wallop me with a new one.

This weekend, The Good Man and I were out and about, coming home from an early dinner when we turned a corner on a quiet street near the county hospital. As we crested a small hill in our mild suburban neighborhood, we saw a man walking determinedly up the street wearing a hospital gown with ill fitting tighty-whities hanging out the back (thank god he was wearing them). His plastic hospital bracelet was flapping in the breeze and he was padding along in white tube socks, despite the chilly drizzling rain.

Now this disturbed me. Not just because I’m usually loath to view the tighty-whities of a stranger, but when I say this man was “walking determinedly”, I mean…WITH A PURPOSE. What purpose, I cannot speculate, but when you see someone walking with that kind of purpose, you figure they are up to something, possibly no good. Add to that visage the hospital gown, aforementioned tighty-whities and the darkening night and you have a freak out factor straight out of all those g’damn horror movies I like to watch.

The Good Man and I had a moment of the “what do we do” conversation. We decided calling 911 was probably too much. So we looped back to the hospital and went inside to tell them one had escaped. They said they were aware of it and really, unless the guy was being held for a 5150, there was little they could do.

Now….I’m a Van Halen fan like anyone else. I know what 5150 means! Has to do with but a psych case. Well, ok, so the good news is that the guy was NOT a 5150, right. Ok……

Well, none of this actually made me *feel* any better.

However, as we made our way back home, we turned another corner and AHHHH! There he was again!!

Ok, in truth we saw five police cars and officers standing in the street and what The Good Man and I now dubbed “Underpants Man” standing on the sidewalk holding his gown closed in the back and looking a little wild eyed.

Seeing many of the county’s finest should have made me feel better. But it didn’t. All evening The Good Man and I were peeking out the kitchen window to see if Underpants Man was standing out there, zombie-like. Purpose in mind.

I tend to think of my little neighborhood as quiet and peaceable. And it is, usually. Normally all the folks at county hospital stay there and allow treatment. And I’m fine with that.

I can’t imagine all the things that led up to Underpants Man bolting the hospital.

I hope wherever he is today, he’s got dry socks, fresh tighty-whities and feels safe.

And I give thanks for my own clean, dry socks, chones, and The Good Man to keep me safe.

(You know, I usually end my blog posts with a photo of something relevant…and the most relevant was, of course, tighty-whities. But that didn’t seem, you know, appropriate. So instead, here is a photo of The Feline asleep on my desk to help us wipe that mental image of Underpants Man out of our collective minds, ok? Isn’t she cute?)

Take nothing for granted

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I’m sure the young man who planned on mugging 83 year old Bernie Garcia thought it was going to be an easy take. A little old lady pumping gas outside a store in Santa Fe.

But the one thing he didn’t count on was the lady’s tenacity.

As Bernie pumped gas, a whippersnapper leapt out of a car and grabbed at her purse.

From the article:

“With a gas pump nozzle in one hand and her purse in the other, Garcia refused to give in to the male assailant’s effort to yank her purse away— this in spite of her being dragged on her side during the struggle.”

“What happened next was a tug of war between a man in his 20s and an 83-year-old woman who stands 5 feet 4 and weighs 125 pounds.”

“He grabbed my left arm and went for my purse,” Garcia recalled. “He started pulling on it, but couldn’t get it off me because (the strap) was winded twice around my arm.”

She wanted to bop him with the gas nozzle but couldn’t manage it so she sprayed gasoline on him instead.

A bystander pulled up as this was happening and yelled at the kid who he ran off, jumped into a car (that had been stolen in Española earlier that day) and took off.

Police responded quick and the three guys in the car were arrested.

Meanwhile, Ms. Bernie Garcia, my hat is off to you. I don’t know if I could have been that clear headed in the same situation.

“It happened so fast, and I just fought, even though I was scared,” she said. “I just wanted to slap him in the face.”

He deserves at least that.

I always say you gotta watch out for the little ones. Little, but scrappy.

Source: ABQJournal

It’s not just me!

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Apparently all my navel gazing might just be “scientific” because, according to yesterday’s ABQjournal, I’m not the only one interested in minutiae.

Click here to read: A Fly’s Mind Not So Simple.

Yes, Los Alamos scientists have been studying how the brain of a common housefly works.

“For decades, researchers have studied how the neurons of flies and other subjects have processed and responded to the world.”

Decades!

Hell, they even took the flies on a little field trip to the woods of Princeton, New Jersey with teeny tiny little electrodes attached to their teeny tiny little heads.

I mean, that’s some good microscopic work!

Now if they could only tell me where all the CalTrain punched numbers go!

Yipes

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Been reading Dilbert for a lot of years in the paper and recently on the website. It’s an every morning “must hit”.

This week it’s been interesting because it looks like Wally is about to be fired.

I found that an odd story twist.

Then while browsing the headlines, I saw this story.

Yikers, fired for posting a Dilbert comic? Geez!

Well, to be fair, given that layoffs were imminent at the guy’s employer, people were probably extra *sensitive*.

But then in his dilbert.blog from back in December, Scott Adams says, “Over the years, a number of people have approached me in public, or e-mailed me, to say they also got fired for posting Dilbert comics on walls. I don’t know how many of those stories, if any, are true.”

Erm. Being a fan of Dilbert, I’ve been known to post a few.

This caused me to vault from my chair and look at my office window.

What’s that, bottom center? A Dilbert comic!

I didn’t even remember which one I posted, but I scanned it hurriedly to see if my understanding Boss Lady would be offended.

Which strip is it, you ask?

This one.

Phew. See? I’m not insulting my boss, I’m insulting my suppliers!

That kind of insulting might just get me promoted if I don’t watch out!!