Coffee heat rising

Another day, another cuppa coffee…

Ohhhh-kayyyy…. Let’s see if WordPress will give us sane formatting today, or whether we have to jangle up our honored Web guru and make him crazy with whatEVER is going on.

Not that we’re not already crazy enough with whatever is going on. Do you still have the temerity to read the news? If so, how exactly DO you retain your grip on your marbles?

Here we are, busily charging a former (if incompetent, yes) president of the United States with THIRTY-SEVEN felony counts of what is basically a treasonous act. Oh, gooood….  Moving on (surely there must be someplace to move on to??)…

Meanwhile, the Republican Party worries that the Presidential Fiasco will come back to haunt them. Guys…if you didn’t want to have to handle a mess, why did you put a mess in the White House? 😀

We have our Native American brethren being (once again) madly ripped off by yet another huge Belagana scheme: hundreds of Navajo being exploited…and God only knows how many members of other tribes.

The Ukrainians are beating the bedoodles out of the Russians. That’s nice…I guess. Be careful who you pick a fight with next time, Vlad baby!

Our brats aren’t buying enough booze to support profits in the concert industry. Awwww….


Enough of that, already! Quite enough to prove that WordPress’s paragraph-break function is working again.


Meanwhile, as we discovered yesterday, the pool is decidedly NOT working. Swimming Pool Service & Repair’s guy surfaced (heh!) yesterday evening and made off with the pump. He figures it’ll take them about three days to fix it and get it back over here.

So far, the water hasn’t turned green. He said not to fuss with it: if algae starts to grow, just take a gallon of chlorine and walk around the pool’s perimeter, slowly dribbling the stuff in.

Ugh! Chlorine: not my favorite choice of drinks…. 😮


Dawdled wayyyyyyyyy too long to get out the door for Ruby’s morning doggy-walk. It is spectacularly hot and humid out there by 7:00 a.m. And the Doggy Jamboree was in full swing by the time we reached the Richistans.

Ruby wants to clear the earth of other dogs, a little characteristic of which other dog owners seem utterly oblivious. While I’m trying to keep my dog from eviscerating theirs, they’re cooing ohhhh don’t worry! they just wanna playyyyy! 

How does a species with so many stump-dumb stupid members manage to survive?

Ninnies of this sort had permeated the Richistans, so we doubled back and walked through the tract of 1960s ranch houses just to the north of ours.

Man! You do not even want to KNOW how much it must cost to air-condition those old piles. In the 1950s and 60s, power was not very expensive here. Consequently, houses and office buildings were never built with effective insulation…often not with any insulation at all. My son’s house, which is of that vintage, just about bankrupts him in the summertime, even when he jacks up the thermostat and has big floor fans blasting in every room.

Once the back yard…now the back porch of the back porch!

I remember my parents’ house in Sun City, each of whose walls was built of one layer of slump block. Period. Didn’t even have a slab of drywall inside, to pretty it up. Put your hand on one of those walls and you’ll burn yourself.

But…in those days, people didn’t stay in Phoenix over the summer. Without a doubt, Del Webb assumed his hordes of retirees would all drive back to Michigan and stay there in their RV’s between May and October. And many of those folks do. SDXB, who now lives in Sun City, does in fact clear out of the Valley for as long as he can, every summer.

My parents didn’t. They’d had their fill of living out of suitcases and driving back and forth across the country, what with my father’s Merchant Marine job and living in lovely Saudi Arabia. And yeah: that house got pretty hot in the summer. My mother jacked that AC so it never went off at any time of the day or night.

Here’s their house, photos taken during the last time it was on the market. It’s much modernized…didn’t have a dishwasher when we lived there, for example. The original screened porch along the back of the house has been enclosed, adding a nice dose of extra square footage to have to air-condition. They’ve laid down some reasonably decent tilework on all the floors– we had ugly carpets throughout.

My father! Just makes me cringe to look at this place and remember what he went through as my mother lay dying in one of those bedrooms.

That poor man. He worked SO hard, all of his life, just to build a comfortable, care-free retirement for them. And how thrilled he was to find Sun City! Boyboyboy: “no brats hollering outside your bedroom window when you’re trying to take a nap!”


Meanwhile, all the time my father was working like a mule, my mother was smoking herself to death. And what a way to go: just freakin’ hideous!

After he had “retired,” happily moved the two of them to a ghetto for old folks, and ensconced me in the University of Arizona (he got me into college a year early, for his convenience), his investments crashed. He’d put everything in insurance securities, which went down the tubes just a year or two after he had retired and deposited us in the middle of the Sonoran Desert. He lost his shirt and had to go back to work, to restore at least some of his retirement savings. I can’t even imagine how horrible that must have been for him. All his life he drudged away so that he could retire at the earliest possible moment and live happily ever after with his bride.

Who, we might add, really was the love of his life.

For his trouble, he got to attend her as she stumbled off to the Next World. And a mighty gawdawful trip that was.

As soon as she died — literally within days — he bought himself into Orangewood, a life-care community in the North Central district of Phoenix. It was ideal for him, because he was accustomed to institutional living and in fact liked it. My mother had refused to go, because a cramped little hole in a warehouse for old folks was not where she wished to spend the last years of her life.

Little did she know how few years she had…

Oh well. Forthwith he moved himself over there. And honestly, I think he would have been very happy at Orangewood had he not been instantly snabbed by the witch who seduced and married him. What a harridan! He didn’t know that until it was too late, though. Upshot: the last few years of his life were pretty damned miserable.

Keep that in mind: when you get old, don’t be in any hurry to lock yourself into a marriage. Nobody cares whether some old buzzard is living in sin with some old bat!

That house is lookin’ mighty good now — or at least, it was when those photos were taken. They enclosed the carport — which was on the west side of the building. Another layer of block plus a large space of empty air (garage) would cut the heat level in that living room, very nicely. They also enclosed the back screen porch, much enlarging the indoor living space.

And they added a dishwasher — my mother never had a dishwasher, in all the time she lived with my father…thirty-some years. All nice new appliances, very good. Ceiling fans: good. Those room air conditioners would have made it a LOT more comfortable for her…really, when you come down to it, it’s kind of odd they didn’t think of that. But then again, maybe not: they bought central air-conditioning to have central air-conditioning, after all. The bathrooms are basically the same, no doubt with updated fixtures. That gawdawful Pepto-Bismol pink tile in the back bathroom was the height of style when they moved in!

Really, if there just weren’t SO many unhappy memories associated with that place, right now today I would seriously consider buying it.