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Fire And Rain October 25, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Health & Wellness, Humor, Mindfulness, People.

At Bridge one afternoon, the fire alarm in the Church Hall went off.  I looked up from my cards to assess the situation.

Inside:  No flames.  No smoke.  Exit doors just steps away.

Outside:  A torrential downpour.  A real gully washer.  Thunder. Lightning.


After raising inquisitive eyes toward the blinking alarm box on the wall of the hall, no one moved from their seats.  Everyone seemed content to “wait and see” what the rest of the players planned to do.

The alarm rang out for about 30 seconds, then went silent.

After it stopped blaring, we issued a collective shrug and returned to playing cards, figuring it was a “false alarm” triggered by the staccato lightning strikes that had punctuated our play all afternoon.

Five minutes later, three burly firefighters in full regalia burst into the room.

They seemed as surprised by our presence as we were by their arrival.  After all, it’s not every day you see a dozen card players playing cards.

Regaining their composure, they strode across the floor and went straight to work checking the alarm boxes.

Glancing at the huddled trio, I sensed palpable displeasure that we hadn’t evacuated the building at the sounding of the alarm.  Waves of disapproval emanated from them.  They couldn’t understand why we were inside playing cards rather than huddled outside dodging raindrops and lightning bolts.


Sure enough, as they turned to leave, one stopped to ask, “Did any of you hear the fire alarm go off?”

All nodded.  (Even those few who had left their hearing aids at home on their dressers.)

“And none of you exited the building?  You just kept playing cards?’

All nodded again.

Hearing no apology and sensing no sign of remorse, he turned from us in disgust and followed the other firefighters down the hall.

Figuring they had a handle on the situation, we returned our calm and concentrated attention to the cards in our hands.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Turning A King Mattress October 22, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Exercise & Fitness, Home & Garden, Humor, Less IS More.

Last time we stripped the bed to wash the sheets, we decided to fluff up the mattress pad in the dryer.

Once the mattress had been divested of its outerwear, we figured we might as well rotate the mattress.

Once the mattress was off the box springs, we figured we might as well wash the dust ruffle.

At that point, Tigger intervened to check on our progress.


He wandered around the unusual landscape checking things out.


Once Tigger gave us the “all clear,” we figured we might as well lift off the box springs and vacuum under the bed.


Once the box springs were removed, we decided to clean the baseboard and wash the walls behind the bed.


A few observations:

#1  One thing leads to another.

#2  Everything is connected.

#3  King beds are H~E~A~V~Y!!!

When I mentioned the intense work-out we got from our mattress turning session to my sister, she asked an astute question:

“What do people do about flipping king mattresses when they get older?”

Considering the options, I replied:

“You ask your kids to do it.  Or you forget to do it.  Or like Lucy and Ricky Ricardo, you trade in your King for Twin Beds.”

Of course, by the time BFF & I get around to turning our mattress again, we may all be sleeping in pods on Mars.

Time will tell.

Aah . . . that’s better!

What’s your least favorite household chore?

Elementary, My Dear Watson! October 15, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Books & Movies, Humor, People.

Who’s the first literary character that springs to mind when you think Aquatics Safety?


Dr. Jekyll / Mr. Hyde?
The Green Hornet?
Homer Simpson?
Robinson Crusoe?

Hold that thought.

The other day we arrived at the beach for our walk and noticed a red and white striped pavilion-style tent on the beach, with a film crew bustling about.

We walked over to find out what they were filming and to ascertain whether they had all the necessary permits to film on the beach.

Not that I know which permits are necessary, but it never hurts to expand one’s base of knowledge.

Donald-DirectorThe director yelled, “CUT!”

Time for action.

I wandered over to ask what he was filming.

“Hi.  What are you filming?”

“A training video.”

My litigation background kicked in and stood me in good stead as I countered his rather terse response with a question designed to elicit additional scintillating details.

“What kind of training video?”

“Aquatics Safety.”

Deciding to expand my base of knowledge elsewhere, I scanned past the hustle and bustle of the film crew and noticed two actors sitting on the sidelines studying their lines.

Of course, at that distance, I couldn’t be certain they were looking over the script.  It could have been a Take Out Menu for lunch, but I suspected script.

Their distinctive dress was a dead giveaway.  In less time than it takes to flip off my flip flops, I deduced they’d been cast as the first literary duo that springs to mind whenever one considers the topic of Aquatics Safety . . .

Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson!

What’s that?  You don’t see the glaringly obvious tie-in between Holmes, Watson, and Aquatics Safety?

Too bad.  I had hoped you could clue me in.

Anyway, BFF and I watched a take or two and then I got a chance to talk to Sherlock during a break in filming.

“Sherlock, you lucky dog!”


“I see you are garbed in a wool cloak, a woolen vest, wool trousers, and a deerstalker cap.”

“Quite right.”

“You will, of course, agree that that gabardine garb would be quite unbearable and, indeed, vastly uncomfortable, if the temperature here on the beach hovered in the mid- to upper-90’s . . . as it has for at least 98 of the past 100 days.”


“And I suspect you will also concur that, given the sudden recent shift in weather from the standard seasonal summer setting of “BLAZING HOT” to autumn’s vastly more reasonable”FUN IN THE SUN,” your gabardine get-up will NOT cause your get up and go to get up and go before the director’s done filming.”

“Quite so.”

“If you will permit me, I will go so far as to venture one further observation.  And that is this:  In light of the gorgeous cooling breeze blowing inland from the Gulf, you, despite your attire, will NOT perspire or expire from extreme heat exhaustion, no matter how many takes the director takes.”


“Ergo. Ipso. Facto.  E Pluribus Unum.  Quid Pro Quo.  Res Ipsa Loquitar.”

“Yes!  Yes!  Exactly right.  I see the reasoning of your logic and the logic of your reasoning.”

“I thought you might.”

“I am, indeed, one lucky dog.”

“Now, tell me old chap.  Just what do you and Watson have to do with Aquatics Safety?”

“Haven’t the foggiest.”

Aah . . . that’s better!

Red Tide At Night . . . No One’s Delight October 11, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Less IS More, Nature.

Before moving to Florida, I’d never heard of Red Tide.  Well, let me tell you, Red Tide STINKS!


Red Tide is an algae-bloom that starts far off shore and moves with the tides, killing fish in its wake.  The dead fish wash up on the beach in droves and do what dead fish are wont to do ~> emit foul odors.


At the end of September, a significant Red Tide bloom made its appearance known to us on our morning beach walk.


We held our breath and made a mad dash for the car.


A few days later, we decided to chance another walk on the beach.

We didn’t bump into any dead fish (they’d been raked up and dumped into a dumpster), but it smelled “fishy” down at water’s edge.  So we walked up near the dunes instead.


Maybe they better add “NO Red Tide” and “NO Dead Fish” to the list of beach and pier prohibitions!

Aah . . . that’s better!

Save Your Breath October 8, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Life Balance, People, Travel & Leisure.

Broccoli-Mocking-StewieSome/most of the stuff people piss and moan about “today” pales in comparison to the hardships endured by people trekking across the plains in covered wagons while gnawing on buffalo jerky.

Compared to the challenges endured during the Civil War and its aftermath, most of us have nothing to complain about.

And, yet, we persist . . .

We regale each other with nitty-gritty details of petty complaints in order to garner sympathy and attention for our insecure egos.

What a waste of time.

AirplaneNext time someone starts to complain about lost luggage or a missed flight connection or some other minor travel or traffic delay, I’m going to encourage them to change their perspective from feeling bad/sad/mad to glad.



Mickey-OKI’ll point out that the ability to gripe, groan, and grouse about an airline snaffu proves, unequivocally, that they did NOT crash land in the Rockies and get cannibalized by the flight crew.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related posts:  A Complaint Free Day (Cleveland Clinic Wellness) * Frankly My Dear (Before Morning Breaks)

Trump That! October 1, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Humor, Life Balance, Magick & Mystery.

Mickey-SurferI woke in the middle of the night, the tendrils of a dream still vivid.

My father had been mediating a dispute between mom and me regarding a matter of the utmost importance . . .

Whether I should stop wearing the shoes I had on.

When it was time for him to render his verdict and declare which of us had “logic” on our side ~ me, based on the direct personal experience of actually wearing the shoes, or mom, based on her second-hand observations about my footwear ~ he side-stepped the issue by standing up, walking a few steps away, and announcing with sage purpose:

“Trump will be out in November . . . and I’m out of here now.”

Mickey-OKAs dad drifted away, I woke up in bed, hugging his words in his stead.

Dad’s words of wise counsel allowed me to drift back to deep and peaceful slumber for the rest of the night, knowing that:

“All will be well in the end.  If all is not well, it is not yet the end.” ~ The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Aah . . . that’s better!

Scrutinizing The Status Quo September 17, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, People.

Mickey-SurferAfter our morning beach walk, we stopped at the outdoor showers to wash the sand off our feet.

As we turned to leave, a barefoot and bare-chested man in his mid-50’s approached the showers.

He turned on the water, stepped into the spray, and pulled out the waistband of his swim trunks, creating a gap between his bare belly and his trunks.

He peered into the chasm as the water made its descent, scrutinizing the situation to ensure that his quo was status:

“Everything OK down there?”

“Yup.  Everything’s good.”

“Any shrinkage?”

“Some.  But we’ll bounce back.”

“Great.  Everyone present and accounted for?”

Mickey-OK“Yup.  All aboard.”


After taking stock of his nether regions, the man released the elastic waistband of his trunks, turned off the shower, and headed back to the beach.

Aah . . . that’s better!

A Two Hour Long Infomercial September 15, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Meditation, People.

Mickey-DiverI tuned in for Craig Hamilton’s webinar on Tuesday night, fifteen minutes before the scheduled start time.

Lovely music played.  I focused on my breathing and relaxed into the Now.

Just going with the flow.

The music stopped.  And . . . NOTHING happened.

I refreshed the page and got a message saying that due to the vast numbers of unenlightened beings trying to listen in, the server had crashed.

No worries.

The what is, is.

Mickey-SurferI decided to look around his website.

Turns out he’s offering a 12-week course in Direct Enlightenment for $547!

That gleaned intel provided the only “A Ha!” moment of the evening.   Although, to be honest, it might have been more of a “Ha Ha” moment.

I tried again to join the webinar to see what he had to say.

Success!  (In a manner of speaking.)

I managed to grab a seat at 9:27 pm and listened to Craig speak in a hushed monotonous monochromatic monotone for the next 90 minutes.

It took him that long to say absolutely nothing.  Then say it again.

I was not impressed with the information he conveyed . . . or the hypnotic, sleep-inducing manner in which he conveyed it.

Mickey-LoungingBottom Line:  I’m not signing up to take his 12 week course for $547.

Sitting through one 2-hour infomercial was more than enough for me.

I think I’ve seen the light!

Aah . . . that’s better!

Got Saw Dust? September 13, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Health & Wellness, Humor.

Donald-DuckaOn the search for a better burrito, we scanned the 137+ varieties of tortillas available at Publix to find one with a healthy mix of ingredients.

Most flour tortillas had a gram of fiber.

The whole wheat tortillas had 2 grams of fiber.

Then we picked up a package of high fiber tortillas which boasted a whopping 11 grams of fiber.

Per tortilla, not per package.

Curious, we read through the ingredient list looking for the source of that fiber.

Donald-Duck-BaseballWas it from oats?  No.

Was it from bran?  No.

How about wheat germ?  Again, no.

Then we spied the fiber source . . . cellulose fiber.  Also known as wood pulp.

Well, you don’t have to hit me over the head with a baseball bat before I can figure out what’s going on . . .

Food manufacturers are obviously as concerned as consumers about getting more fiber into our food.

Wanting to avoid genetically modified FrankenFood, they turned to the forest and saw the trees!

Trees, standing tall and overflowing with pulpy goodness.

Real trees, not GMO trees loaded with FrankenFiber.

They called lumber yards and floor liquidators, ordering up 10,000 cubic tons of surplus saw dust to bulk up our food and our bellies.

Donald-Duck-LazyThey boiled it down and added it to cereals, granola bars, loaves of bread, ice cream, and tortillas.

And that, in a nutshell, is why processed food tastes like saw dust!

Aah . . . that’s better!

Restrain Your Self! September 10, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Joke, People.

Wikipedia ~ Handcuffs (in Public Domain)

After a short but heated criminal  trial, the judge asked the defendant if he would like to say anything before the court passed sentence.

Nodding, the defendant jumped to his feet.

His attorney reached out to restrain him . . . to no avail.

Staring defiantly at the judge, the defendant grinned, “Yeah, I got somethin’ to say.”

As defense counsel cradled his head in his hands and prepared for the worst, the defendant smirked and said,  “Your honor, you’re a fat, four-eyed son-of-a-bitch!”

With that, the defendant sat down, a smug look of satisfaction on his face.

His attorney looked toward the judge, hoping the judge would have a sense of humor about the comment.

With a small smile tugging the corners of his mouth, the judge peered over his glasses at the defendant and drawled, “Well, I daresay you may be right about your first two observations . . .”

After pausing to remove and clean his glasses, the judge dropped the other shoe, “but that last comment is going to cost you an extra 90 days.”

“Defendant is hereby remanded to custody . . . ”

Aah . . . that’s better!

Self Restraint . . . you never know when it might save you some time.

Inspiration:  a joke I heard many moons ago