Sunday, June 25, 2006

Funeral Weirdness

We just got home from a nice trip to Indiana to go to my friend Steve's wedding and visit with Anna's family. As it turns out, we also ended up going to a funeral.

It was an uncomfortable funeral. We went because Anna was related to the deceased, but she really didn't know her. I'd never met anyone from this part of the family, and the last time Anna had been around any of them was about 10 years ago. Have you ever been to a viewing like that? Where you just sit around and make idle conversation with people you've never met while standing next to a dead person you've never met? Awkward? Um.. yeah!

The deceased's adopted daughter's best friend put together a CD with music to play at the viewing. So, we're all siting there at the viewing chit-chatting uncomfortably while songs like Bette Midler's "Wind beneath my Wings" played in the background. Someone made a comment that the person who put the CD together had never arranged music for a funeral. This became more apparant as the CD went on. Some of the songs where a little iffy, but I really had a hard time not laughing out loud when the song changed to "Knockin' on Heaven's Door"

Oh yeah... it was The Guns N' Roses version....

Monday, June 12, 2006

Wild Hogs

There are a lot of wild pigs in Texas. Javelinas, Feral hogs, and assorted other varieties. They were originally introduced to the area by Coronado and their spread and population has grown over the years. While there are normally a fair number of them about, there seems to be an unusually high number within about 50 miles of where we live. The story is that in the 1960s there was a hog farmer who had about 3000 pigs in San Saba, TX - about 50 miles from here. Apparently he got in to some sort of trouble with the IRS and was going to lose his farm and animals. Rather than lose all of his livestock to the IRS, he let them all loose. Yup... Better to let them live free then give them to the government. He cut some fence, opened some gates, and let 3000 of these critters loose. They bred like rabbits with the wild hogs that were already here. There are hogs everywhere now. Ranchers will often let you come out for free and shoot them just to get rid of them. They tear up pastures and make a mess and car/boar accidents are almost as common as car/deer wrecks.

Why am I telling you all of this? We had a guest minister in town at church this week, so we had some extra services. Well, on Friday night one family was on their way home and low and behold, 9 wild hogs ran across the road in front of them. They were able to brake and swerve out of the way.

On Saturday night they were on their way home and at the same spot, they saw a single hog by the side of the road. Someone had just hit it. It was still alive and was flopping around on the shoulder. It was just about dead and would have been dangerous for them to approach in it's frenzy. It looked to be a good sized young hog. He thought about taking it home, but he was driving his Mom's van and he thought if he loaded a dead pig in it that she was just as likely to roast him as she would be to roast the pig. He gave up on the idea.

He called another guy who had to drive home on the same road and told him about it and reminded him to be careful. About 30 minutes later the second guy called back the first guy and says, "Hey, I got that boar all gutted and cleaned. I'll bring it over in just a little bit."

We were over at their house on Sunday afternoon and he told us this story and then he brought out this pork roast for us to try. We thought it was a big joke - you know... Texas humor is a little different. Turns out he wasn't kidding. That was some mighty tasty boar. Weighed in at 125 pounds and had about 2 inch tusks so he was pretty young and tender.

Ever eat Road Kill Boar anyone? Check!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Bloomin' Cactus

Did you know that Cactus bloom? I didn't. Texas amazes me sometimes. There really is a huge variety of flowers and other fauna that I find very interesting. There are cactus everywhere, but when they're not in bloom they blend in pretty good with the wild grasses and other greenery. Now that they are in bloom, they stand out in the ditches and pastures. Here's some pictures I took in the empty lot across the alley:

Scrabble - Round II

Anna asked me to play Scrabble with her the other day. We hadn't had a match in quite some time, so I agreed. She asked me why I never seem to want to play Scrabble with her. Ever since she started playing Scrabble on the Internet Scrabble Club (ISC), she's gotten really, really good. Her ranking on ISC is about 850.

So we played. I scored a respectable 253 points. Not my best showing, but OK. Anna plunked down four seven letter words to propel herself to a new personal record of 579 points. She had a single word that netted 185 points. Yikes! This woman knows how to strike fear into the heart of her opponents.

I wept. And she wonders why I never want to play this game with her? The sort of game that can make a grown man cry...

Friday, June 02, 2006

New Hat

Anna took me shopping tonight. I really don't like to shop, but I needed to. My diet continues to go well. Since November, I've lost 16 lbs, which is great. The bad part is that my jeans are a little too loose now. So, she took me out to find some new ones. While we were out, I spotted this hat and decided to buy it too. What do you think?