Southern Man

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Saturday In The Park

It was a gray morning and not conducive to photography but Southern Man's redbuds have finally bloomed. They always wait two weeks after the other redbuds bud out and make him think that they didn't make it...

We planted dozens and dozens of trees fifteen years ago and tended them and watered them and then one hot, hot summer Southern Man went out to The Land and they were all gone - eaten to the ground by deer or beavers or something. But these three redbuds came back from the roots. All three are native, harvested from a friend's estate. None of the store-bought trees made it.

Saturday morning the church group met up at a local park for geocaching and Frisbee Golf and walking...

Adam and his Frisbee Golf team.

We went one for six on geocaches but it was still a lot of fun.

And that evening was the monthly Christian dance...

Beware of Pool Sharks!

Our Lovely Hostess

The Boys

The Girls

And thus ends another busy and fun Saturday!

Sunday, April 06, 2014

A Sunday In The Life

7:00  Wake up
8:00  Arrive at gym, work out, shower
10:00  Arrive at church for Bible study (we're working our way through Hebrews right now)
12:00  Lunch with friends
2:00  Geocaching in the park
4:00  Haircut
5:00  Pedicure (Southern Man occasionally spoils himself; also, he can't reach his own toenails)
6:00  Grocery Shopping
7:00  Home for dinner and movies and relaxation

A day of rest, indeed. You didn't see "work" mentioned in any of that, did you?

Saturday, April 05, 2014

Coffee and Weddings and Caching, Oh My!

Saturday was a busy, busy day - Coffee Talk in the morning, an outdoor wedding in the afternoon, and geocaching well into the dark of night.

First off was our monthly meet for coffee and fellowship and Bible study. Our hosts recently moved (and to a location that's just a stone's throw from Southern Man's workplace) so this is the first one in a couple of months.

In The Kitchen

Paul chillin' out


Since work was nearby and there was plenty of work on his desk Southern Man slaved away in the office for a few hours, then headed into Southern City for the wedding.

The gift table and registration book.

Cake and punch!

"What really knocked me out were their red sunglasses..."

The Groom, an engineer, could not resist dealing with last minute technical details.

He also built this bridge so that The Bride wouldn't have to traverse that little ditch in four-inch heels.

What's a wedding without sax?

The Happy Couple.

And then Southern Man fell victim to a devious plot. Shirley (pictured above), without his knowledge, told her son Shane (also pictured above) that "Southern Man might want to geocache with you tonight." Then she told Southern Man "Hey, Shane really wants to go geocaching tonight!" He suspects that she just wanted him out of the house for a while so that she could have some "quiet time" with her boyfriend. But, hey, it's geocaching so no complaints. We 'cached until well after dark, then ate Mexican food and Southern Man got him home at ten-ish.

Shane nabs a cache.

And that was a full and fun Saturday. May there be many more like it! Lord, thank you for the friends and the freedom you've granted me. Amen.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Government Health Care

Southern Man had a question and, reluctantly, dialed the appropriate 24/7 toll-free number to ask it. The conversation went like this...
Computer voice: Thank you for calling [big government office]. You can say [list of options].

Southern Man: Representative.

Computer Voice: You'd like to speak to someone. Is that correct?

Southern Man: Yes.

Computer Voice: Great, I'll get someone for you...

...brief pause...

Computer Voice: We're experiencing high call volume at this time. If you like, we can call you back in...

...brief pause...

Computer Voice: ...sixteen hours and forty-five minutes. Would you like for us to call you back then?

Southern Man: (sighs) Yes.
If they're true to their word Southern Man should get his callback at about four tomorrow morning. The chances of him actually hearing the phone at that hour are slim to none. But he'll put the phone by his pillow tonight just in case...

[Added the next day...] They called back, a little ahead of schedule, and the representative was able to answer my question. How about that?

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Spring Break!

Ah, Spring Break, that glorious week in the middle of the semester. Alas, it was too brief...

Southern Man had Teen Daughter for the first half of break. Of course she took nature photos at every opportunity.

One of many sunset pics by Teen Daughter.

We had a lot of fun - saw the new Disney movie, went to the trampoline park, ate out any number of times - before she had to go back to her Mother on Wednesday.

Of course there was geocaching.

Southern Man did this one with the teen son of a friend and a couple of cachers from Kansas that we met early in the day. The caches were actually spread out around an area lake but it does make for lovely "geo-art."

Teen friend, the fellow from Kansas, and Southern Man. Photo by the wife of the fellow from Kansas.

He also went up into this tree to retrieve a cache.

On Friday evening we went bowling...


Knock 'em down!

One of The Girls.

And finally Southern Man had just a few days to get some chores done out at The Land but then Spring Break was over far too soon. Oh well summer is coming!

Saturday, March 08, 2014

Lunch and Geocaching and Dancing, Oh My!

Today was the monthly geocacher's lunch, which is always a great time.

Forget geocaching - Little Gypsy came to sell cookies!

Bonnie wasn't aware that the question was "who wants to host the next luncheon?"

"Take this haunted Totem and recieve three free mushrooms!"

Little Gypsy and Hate To Be Lost mug for the camera.

After lunch Southern Man and Dr. Scissortail headed out to pick up a few caches...

"Can't get in that way..."

We were five feet from the cache but had to hike to the other entrance and break out the flashlights to get to it.

And that evening was the monthly Bible Study and Christian Connection dance...

Dancing fools

Pool Sharks

A Dancing Princess

Thank you, Lord, for a day filled with good people and good times. Amen.

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Physical Therapy

So after numerous delays Southern Man finally gets his first appointment with the surgeon-recommended physical therapist to work on that ankle. But when Southern Man found out what it would cost ($200 per visit with insurance!) he decided that walking to distant geocaches would be both cheaper and more effective so he tackled one near the therapist called "Deer Trail" that was about a half-mile in to an undeveloped area.

One of the deer didn't make it.

So there will be no physical therapy this month, just lots of backwoods geocaching. Wait, isn't that how Southern Man broke his leg in the first place?

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Old Man Winter

Winter just will not let go, with another cold weekend and two, count 'em, two snow days for the public schools. Alas, Southern Man's employer only took one of them.

On Friday Southern Man went to a concert of local musicians hosted by a friend (from whom Southern Man once took guitar lessons)...

They are terrible cell phone snaps but they will have to do.

Saturday was spent running errands and eating out (Southern Man ate out a lot this weekend) and Sunday was too cold for much of anything after church and lunch and laundry and Monday was a snow day!

Bright and clear and very, very cold...

But by mid-afternoon it had warmed up a bit and Southern Man set out on a geocaching trip to pick up a few more in a series commemorating the Monopoly game board. One was in this snow-covered tree.

This one is "Income Tax" and Southern Man got nearly to "Jail" before quitting for the day and heading back into town to eat, again.

So a fun if cold weekend. Next weekend is a Teen Daughter weekend but we're supposed to get one more wintery blast. Southern Man is ready for winter to be over!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Another Political Quiz

This one claims to be able to predict your political outlook based on whether you prefer dogs to cats and your choice of web browser.

You may have to click on it to actually read the text.

So apparently Southern Man's only "liberal" qualities are a slight preference for cats over dogs, his use of a "modern" web browser, and his proclivity for fine art over crowds. But there's no arguing with the results.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Movie Review: Robocop

This is a Teen Daughter weekend and it turned out to be fairly low key but much to Southern Man's surprise when he offered her the choice of a movie to see she selected RoboCop.

Southern Man had his doubts (the original was a favorite and he wasn't all that excited about a PG-13 remake of a hard-R film) but went with an open mind anyway. And indeed the new Robocop film has quite a bit going for it. There was considerable exploration of the impact on his wife and son, for example, so with her as the love interest "Lewis" was transformed into his male partner. They throw out a few lines from the old movie ("I wouldn't buy that for a dollar") and some interesting takes on RoboCop-1987 scenes to amuse us older fans. The principle antagonist was a criminal kingpin in league with crooked cops, rather than with the corporation. And there was even quite a bit of emphasis on Robocop's abilities and vulnerabilities ("You're tough, but not invulnerable") so Southern Man was hoping for action scenes with actual tactics.

He would be disappointed. Robocop's preferred strategy was (again) to blast his way into a crowd of bad guys, shrug off their (sometimes considerable) firepower, and shoot whatever he saw. At one point he even takes ED-209 fire right to the back - which according to earlier dialog should have perforated him like Swiss cheese - with little ill effect. But later RoboCop does manage to shoot off his own (robotic) hand. RoboCop, again, is as vulnerable (or invulnerable) as the plot demands.

The new and improved ED-209. However, no stairs were attempted in this film.

The PG-13 rating meant minimal blood and gore and "taser bullets" that incapacitated without killing and so on but we do get a startling look at RoboCop's remaining human innards.

Followed by the obligatory Iron Man-esque automatic suit assembly.

So Robocop 2014 gets a "meh" thumbs up but Southern Man may dig through the DVDs and watch the original one day soon.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

In The Navy

Cribbed from the USS Gunston Hall Facebook page...

That's Southern Daughter on the far right.

Southern Man is very proud of her. Can you tell?

Monday, February 17, 2014

iTunes bricks the iPad

While Southern Man has been in computers for a long time he had never owned an Apple product of any kind - no Apple ][, no Mac, no iPod or iPhone (although he's purchased plenty of both as gifts for the Southern Children) until his former employer bought iPads for everyone.

And, yes, the Apple Kool-Aid is sweet indeed and Southern Man loved his iPad enough that he bought it from them when he left their employ.

That said, Southern Man is firmly convinced that the unholy abomination that is iTunes is of the Devil's Software Workshop.

But as Southern Man was "synching" the iPad the other day iTunes suggested that it install the latest and greatest version of IOS. Southern Man agreed. And when the update was finish the iPad's Wi-Fi was greyed out.

That is a bad thing as the iPad isn't much good without a 'net connection so Southern Man did a little Googling and found that, yes, IOS updates occasionally knock out the Wi-Fi and so even though it was years out of warranty Southern Man took the iPad to the Apple Store to see if they had a fix. And here is what the "genius" at the genius bar had to say:
Well, we do see this a lot. It's because when you update the operating system the iPad is under a lot of stress and that causes the Wi-Fi hardware to fail.
Yes, he really did say that.

So, the iPad is now a very pretty brick. Southern Man must now contemplate just what he should do with it.

Weekend Update

The big event on Valentine's Day was that The Huyndai turned 100,000.

Of course Southern Man didn't take that picture himself while driving at 60 mph. That would be crazy.

Southern Man's first car, a '64 Mercury, was old at a hundred thousand; The Hyundai is nicely broken in.

On Saturday Southern Man wandered out to the Ancestral Manor to help Southern Father erect the scaffolding...

Scaffolding is up to repair the roof on the playhouse in the middle of the pecan orchard.

...and to do laundry...

Southern Father hangs his laundry. It irks him to no end that Southern Man uses the dryer instead.

...and to pick up a fifty-year-old table saw motor that needs a rebuild so that Southern Father can get back to build birdhouses.

On Sunday Southern Man got out early to tackle a rural geocache before church. He encountered a deep gully and was pondering how to cross it when he noticed...

Well, that was unexpected.

...a concrete bridge. In the middle of nowhere.

And then after church and lunch with the gang Southern Man went to a gun show "just to look around" and almost - almost - walked out with a Glock 26 that he didn't need but probably would have bought anyway if there hadn't been a stack of medical bills at home.

But it was pretty, and it had night sights, and the price was right...

This was the first warm weekend in quite a while and Southern Man enjoyed his time outside. May there be many more!

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Weekend Update

A busy weekend!

This was a Teen Daughter Weekend so on Friday Southern Man headed out to rendezvouz with Southern Ex to retrieve her. Naturally the first thing she did was grab the camera and start to play.

The Eye

I have stared at this for an hour and still have no idea what it is.

Saturday morning was the monthly geocacher's luncheon...

Girl Scouts Have Cookies!

Alex, an air traffic controller and geocacher from Germany, is in Southern City for some training at the FAA center.

We start 'em caching young.


Southern Man hit a few nearby caches after the meeting; he was just leaving this one when Insane Posse pulled up.

...and Saturday evening was the monthly Christian dance.

As usual, the only dance floor pics that were remotely in focus were of everyone's butt.

Pool Sharks.

Shirley and Jeri are two of Southern Man's favorite gals.

It's like saccharine - a thousand times sweeter than sugar.

And then the weekend was over all too soon and Southern Man had to take his girl back to her mother. But we had a blast - at her suggestion we purchased cards and candy and $5 gifts for each other to celebrate Valentine's Day early. Her card has one of those sound chips in it that sings a silly song but it ends with "I LOVE YOU!" and Southern Man loves it even though the voice sounds like Spongebob Squarepants on crack.