Hill Country Bubba – Random Thoughts

Posted in Uncategorized on October 27, 2009 by hillcountrybubba

“NEVER GROW OLD! 

NEVER GROW OLD!

If you feel like you’re getting old… kill yourself.”

               Hill Country Bubba – October 2009 

So I’ve gotten a few comments from avid  fans as of late  (we shall hence forth call them Bubbaroo’s), wondering why I have fallen off the blogging horse after coming out of the starting gate like a shot.  We will get to that in a minute.  Let’s first get to my quote of the week, or month, depending how soon I do another blog… 

Here is the reason for my quote.  As I mentioned above, it’s been a veritable shout-fest from people questioning when I would write another insouciant piece (don’t know what that word means but I think it’s nifty and I’ve always wanted to use it but  have never quite been able to work it into a conversation).  So I decided to do some writing today.  It’s been raining all day, I got 4 loads of laundry done, the house picked up and I’ve got no place to go.  I got ready to start another blog installment, and, damn, guess what?  I can’t remember the name of the web site to log on to in order to write my blog.  I’ve got a link to Hill Country Bubba, but not one to the site that runs the blog and I can’t remember the friggin’ name of the company hosting the site.  After jumping around the house for a few minutes, doing the last of the fluffing and folding, and pondering the possible embarrassment of calling my brother to ask him the name of the site, I managed to back door my way into it by looking through some old e-mails.  It never occurred to me that the name of the company is embedded in the blog title. 

So there… Friggin’ old.  Brain farts.  Brain farts all the time.  They seem to come with some level of frequency any more, and heck, I’m only 55, living a fairly low stress life (if being unemployed is a low stress situation).  It can only go downhill from here.  Before you know it I’m gonna be wandering around the house trying to find my squirreled stash of “Depends”.  And that isn’t even the worst of it.  Jesus, the size of my ears now… but I’m saving that rant for another blog.   Believe it or not … the big ear thing ties in with my proposed Aurobindo blog… got ya hooked now, don’t I?

So I haven’t explained the gap in my blogging.  Here’s the deal.  Blogging is WORK!  People are waiting on you for something funny and interesting to brighten up their miserable lives.  They need stuff to read or look at on their computers while killing time at work.  They need a website to waste time on that can avoid the corporate network security/employee monitoring system. C’mon, just because you have a job doesn’t mean you’re working any harder than unemployed Bubba!  I know what you’re doin’.

So the pressure has been enormous.   It’s crippling.  My blog is not a business, has no contractual deliverables or requirements, there’s no boss breathing down my neck because I got snotty with a client or am behind schedule… and I’m still stressed about doing the damn thing.  It’s an evil (world wide) web we weave.  My previous blog might rightly be considered a comedic tour-de-force.  But am I a one hit wonder?  The artistic insecurity starts to creep in… What would Woody do?

I have always wanted to do some kind of humor writing ever since I can remember, but the immediacy of the internet, e-mails, Twitters, Blackberry’s, telephones, two orange juice cans and a string… they all serve as communication vehicles used by devotees to put pressure on the artiste to create.  When I am walking around the house alone talking to my self all day long, I find that I’m quite a humorous fellow.  If I try to string two funny thoughts together on the computer I sit and stare.  And about all I can think to do is toggle over to a porno site…  but I can’t continue doing that as the cost of getting all those nasty viruses cleaned of my computer is bleeding me to death financially.

So I’m going to have to shift gears with regard to my writing if I want to keep the stuff coming.  It is extremely difficult and time consuming to create and weave a finely crafted essay like my last one, especially since Bubba doesn’t go to the movies too much, and as a result he has no ideas to steal.  So I’m going to attack this from a different perspective as noted in the title of this blog — Random Thoughts.    It will be an old white man’s version of scat singing.  I’ll just be flitting around with random thoughts, zoobedy doo-wahing all over the place.   And then I’ll leave it to you to determine if it’s really art or me just jerking your chain to kill time and “keep the song going while I try to remember the actual words”.

So here goes, I’m gonna let the monkey out of the cage and see where he runs. …. Speaking of monkeys, isn’t it amazing the number of  people who seem to have actually seen monkeys Mr. b 8 ing (I’m practicing tweeting) while on a field trip to the zoo?  Really.   Next time you’re at a party ask around.  As a matter of fact, look over the wall to your cubicle right now and ask one of your coworkers.  You’ll be amazed at the response you get to that question…. one way or another….

If your coworker has not experienced such a sighting, continue polling.  Ask your HR director the same question when you land in her office.  Hell, you’ll probably get fired anyway, and if she has had such a zoological experience, she’ll interpret your question as totally logical and appropriate office conversation.  What have you got to lose at that point anyway?

Wow… that riff was totally freeing … makes me feel like pulling on a beret and firing up a reefer…  shooby do-wah…

Let’s try another one…I got an e-mail the other day from one of my previous co-workers, actually I think it was one of my staff but we always called them co-workers so everyone would feel equal… yeah, right…  The e-mail was an invitation to join one of those business networks.  I believe it was Plaxo.  So in their effort to slice and dice the data into minute categories so they can then sell the data or figure out what advertisements to have pop up on your screen, Plaxo asks you to categorize each individual who is linked to your network. 

So here’s where I start getting a bit confused, and maybe this tracks back to my earlier rantings about getting old, or just being an old fashioned kinda guy.  I have the option of identifying this person as “a friend”.  But here’s the complication, the system cautions me to determine if the person is a “real” friend and not just my “social network” friend.  WTF? (more Twitter practice).  Are your kidding me?  A “real” friend as opposed to a “fake” friend.  When I was a kid I had a “real” friend who followed me around all the time, even though nobody ever saw him.  Maybe that’s what they’re talking about.  Who’s got a Webster’s in their cubicle?  Hell, look it up on Google.  What’s the definition of the word “friend”?  Man, these guys are parsing words more tightly than Bill Clinton, “What’s your definition of the word “is”?” .

 Does that seem kinda weird or am I just old and out of touch?   I know I’m not up to date on all the latest technology, but I’m not a Luddite… I’m more of a Lud-Lite.  I’ll use some technology, just not always the latest and greatest.  I have no need for a Wi-Fi enabled Bluetooth gizmo to raise and lower my zipper for me.  I, or a “real” friend of my choice, can do it …  

And speaking of business networks, a couple more random thoughts…. When I joined LinkedIn many moons ago, when I thought it might be helpful in finding a job, LinkedIn, like Plaxo and many others, was touted as an exclusive web site.   Exclusive to whom or what?  I can now officially report that I am, through LinkedIn, less than six degrees to Kevin Bacon.  Is there anyone who isn’t on that site?  I’ve got a guy that I’ve never met,  who has been trying to get me to link with him for about 5 years now.  We both went to the University of Maryland.  I went to school there when it was inaugurated as the first land grant college in 1856, and I believe Mr. Cezobar went there sometime in the 1990’s.  Somehow he seems to think we are booger buddies.  I think this guys only goal is to be linked to every human being on the planet.  But… I’d be happy to write a nice recommendation for him…  No misleading data on business network sites ya know…

Which leads me to another random thought about business network sites.   Is everyone on these networks from Lake Wobegon?  Is EVERYBODY above average?   There’s more lieing on those sites than on dating sites.  Everyone has a resume bigger than Long Dong Silvers…. 

Here’s where I start getting itchy about blogging, or writing in general.  They always say that you should write what you know.  What I know is my experiences with people I have interacted with throughout my life.  If I want to write about funny or stupid stuff, it has to be in relation to people and events that are part of my life.  I don’t want to really make fun of other people (and possibly lose the two friends that I have), but I can only self deprecate on this site but so much and then I have to look outward.  The thing about anything being funny is that there has to be some sadness, pain or nastiness associated with it.  Stuff that I would consider to be maddening or painful if it happened to me, can be extremely funny… just as long as I’m standing on the sidelines… watching it happen to YOU.   So with that off my chest here we go. 

I will start off by saying that there are people I have worked with over the course of my career who may have considered me to be stupid, calculating, lazy and or shiftless  (we agree that everyone has the right to be wrong) … so that’s out on the table…   But let’s circle back to business networks, and specifically,  like my “unreal” friend Mr. Cezobar, to recommendations regarding past work performance.  Once again, it appears that we all spawn from Lake Wobegon.  

So here’s my story.  If you are on one of these business network web sites you usually get an e-mail each week that fills you in on changes that have been made to the page of the various people you are connected to.  People let you know that they’ve changed jobs, they’re reading a life altering book, they’re going to take a vacation, they’re gonna get a carbuncle removed, and all kinds of other fun and interesting stuff.  I like to read these updates because I am so out of touch with my previous career in the information technology industry it’s a good way to keep up with what’s going on in the business and with the lives of people I have worked with over the years.  On some level it’s a bit more engaging and uplifting than reading an on-line article about another suicide bomber blowing up in the Middle East.  

Now I’ve had the good fortune to have a couple of recommendations written about me, and I’ve also written a few for other folks.  But I have to wonder.  Do the recommendations really have any value to anyone other than the people directly involved in the recommendation?  Is it more of an ego boost to the folks involved rather than a useful piece of information for someone looking to hire someone off of the site? If Mr. Cezobar got a million recommendations from the roughly 4 billion people that he’s linked to, can I count on those recommendations being true and valuable?  While I may well be an untrusting and cynical soul, I think the problem goes deeper than my psychosis.  Here’s why. 

About a year ago I got my weekly update e-mail from one of my business network sites.  There were updates from two folks whom I had worked with years ago.  One was an executive manager, the other was in sales.  Each had recently provided a glowing recommendation of the other.   When I read the recommendations I couldn’t help but laugh.  In fact, the two gentlemen pretty much despised each other (at least when we were all working together).  The salesman came to work every day in mortal fear of being fired for his lack of sales production.  The manager lusted to fire the guy, thinking the salesman incompetent, but due to lack of any other available sales personnel, was forced to keep the underachiever on.  Conversely, the salesman frequently expounded on his perceptions that the manager was an incompetent boob.  And his assessment was probably correct given that the manager was eventually fired for poor performance and the collapse of his organization.  It has been said that one of the great things about the human spirit is its ability to remember the good things and forget the bad.  I guess these two guys are a prime example of that.  Because after reading the recommendations you’d think that the salesman was the top producer in the organization, and the manager was a leader second only to General Patton.  Makes you kind of wonder about the whole thing.  Anyone who interviewed either of these guys based on their mutual recommendations would be in for a big surprise.

As I questioned before, can the recommendations really be of any value?  Supposedly, since we’re all “members of the club” the system should be self correcting in that you wouldn’t want to make a recommendation of a dud to one of the people you’re connected to and  with whom, theoretically, you are “real” friends.  But like Mr. Cezobar, if you’re networked and connected to roughly the population of North and South America combined, do you really have any allegiance to all those folks?  At what point can you start to fib a little?  One billion, two billion?…  And really, when all is said and done,  does anyone really have the stones to write a comment that says “this guy’s really a dolt.  DON”T HIRE HIM!”.   I was just kinda wondering…. 

 Well that about wraps it up for that rant… gotta get moving.  Kevin and I are heading out for a beer…  shooby doo-wah!

That’s it for this blog and remember:

James Taylor says “Never Die Young”.  Well, Hill Country Bubba begs to differ… “Never Grow Old”…

PS.  If you’re wondering why Bubba didn’t take his own advice and is still around to write this blog…read the quote carefully…  I’ve already passed the point of no return… I don’t feel like I’m getting old… I know I’m already there…. check the ears…

Grabbing Eyeballs – 9/7/09

Posted in Uncategorized on September 7, 2009 by hillcountrybubba

In my previous blog I promised a more exciting and stimulating post on the next go around.  It’s been about a week since I have tried to pen (type?) another installment because I got mentally paralyzed by having promised a more interesting post this time (see previous blog under “Woody Allen Complex”/neuroses).  Maybe in another blog I’ll write about writers block (do you have writer’s block if you can write about it?), but, intuitively, I don’t see that topic being one of my more stimulating installments… not that I have any that would come under the category of “exciting” yet.   

So my brain has been spinning since starting this blog.  How do I make it interesting, how do I get readers?  Ya know it’s all about eyeballs, stickiness, link-to’s, pass-through’s, monetization… all that internet lingo that re-emerged a year after the dot-com blowout when everybody could finally start thinking about internet businesses again, after realizing that you couldn’t make money with a sock puppet as a logo for you’re on-line dog training course.  And even if you could make a few shekels, your business probably wasn’t worth $5.2 billion. 

So I’m back at it again.  How to create a buzz, how to get folks twittering and tweeting, chirping and cheeping, burping and farting… any kind of air or buzz about my site.  I’ve been stewing on it real hard.  And it finally came to me…

Have you seen that movie that recently came out entitled Julie & Julia?  For those like myself who either go to the movie only once a year in order to appear “socialized” or who are permanently out of the cultural loop, let me explain about this movie.   Since I have not gotten Columbia Pictures to provide any cash for promoting their movie (not enough sticky eyeballs at Hill Country Bubba’s yet) I’ll give you the short lowdown on the movie.  Essentially, it is a movie about the life of Julia Child, prior to her becoming famous as a French chef.  The movie is interwoven with another story about a woman who was writing a blog and trying to figure out how to get more folks to read her blog (and fill in her boring, whiny life).  So here’s what she did.  She took Julia Child’s French cook book, which had somewhere around 400 recipes in it, and then she promised to cook each recipe in the book and complete the book within a year.  That meant that she would have to cook at least one, and sometimes two of the recipes EVERY DAY for a year.  The idea was that she would then blog about the recipe each day and write about all the incredible life lessons she learned while burning her biscuits and chopping off selected fingers…

Julie what’s-her-name actually did this, and wrote her blog,  slowly built a huge following, wrote a book, and got a movie deal to bring the book to the big screen.  At which point I paid $14 for my wife and I to watch the movie, and nearly $16 dollars for the “Combo Special”, two sodas and a bucket of popcorn!  Do you see where I’m going with this?  RICHES, BABY,RICHES!  And all she had to do was take advantage of 6 or 8 years worth or struggle and writing by Julie Child.  Is America great or what?  (Though I must say that if Julia Child were still alive she’d be reaping some goodies too, as her book has recently made it to the top of the New York Times best seller list.  Unfortunately, the only thing Julia is eating these days is worms, or “vers” as they call them in France.) 

So I’m thinking about all this while I’m sitting on my glider, staring out into my Hill Country field, watching the ever baking vegetation turn from light brown to dark brown.  And then it hit me… I could do the same thing.  All I need to do is find a good recipe book that I could follow, and maybe ride the heels of Julie just as she rode the heels of Julia.  I stewed on the idea.  I sat in the Texas sun and baked on the idea.  By late afternoon, in the Hill Country oven, I broiled on the idea.  And then I come to the realization that I can’t cook for crap, and, generally, that’s what my cooking tasted like.  So maybe cooking wasn’t a good strategy. 

I decided to fall back and ponder things a little longer.  I got back to the basics of blogging and the internet.  It’s all about eyeballs.  What attracts eyeballs? 

And then I had another revelation .  What sells?  Of course!  Any idiot knows the answer to that question.  SEX SELLS!  So now I’m thinking I’m on to something.  Sex… cookbooks… recipes…  Sex…cookbooks… recipes….  Sex…cookbooks… Sex… Sex… Sex… And then all of the sudden the light came on.  BINGO!… or, I guess in the parlance, it would be BOINGO!

I told you that this blog was gonna be more stimulating…

A book with recipes… a book with recipes for sex.  I GOT IT.  I’m gonna do a blog, a daily blog, using  “The Joy of Sex” as my cookin’ book!  I got a tingle all over (well, in some places more than others).  I can see it all now.  Fifty-five year old man challenges himself to work his way through the entire JOY OF SEX manual in less than a year (gotta up the ante here)!  I may even have to double up like Julie and do TWO positions in a day just to stay on schedule.  It might be a stretch, but, heck,  they say that 55 is the new 25. 

Now hold on for a second pardner.  Before you wander off to the bathroom to barf at the thought of visualizing this… take a moment to think.  You may consider my idea gross, disgusting, off-putting, ludicrous, self indulgent, and damn near-impossible for a man of my age.  But here’s the hook… Nobody can stop themselves from taking a look at an automobile accident as they drive by, no matter how gory or upsetting… NOBODY!  —- EYEBALLS, BABY!!!!!!  It’s all about myeyeballs.   You know you’re gonna have to read it.  I haven’t figured out how to embed pictures in the blog yet so you’re safe on that count.  All I’ll be doing is writing about the daily ins-and-outs (so to speak) of following the recipes.  Anything you see will be a picture created in your minds eye.  So you can go as horrid or genteel (genital?) as you want…

So let’s stop here for a moment .  Take a few deep breaths, talk amongst yourselves.  I know you’re now getting excited too.  Let me give you a little background to the book, JOY OF SEX.  For those of you who are older you probably already know that this book was published in the early 70’s.  Wikepedia describes it as “… the first illustrated, serious such manual to gain wide distribution—at least in modern America”  (of course the French were laughing all the way).  The book is essentially a dicktionary that describes an extensive (and alphabetically listed) range of things and activities, sexual.  The book spent more than 70 weeks in the top five list of the New York Times Best Seller List, surprisingly, a tad few more weeks than Ms. Julia’s book.  Hmmmm… I think this bodes well for my blog. 

Interestingly, as I noted, the book rode the best seller list for quite some time, yet you can’t find anyone who admits to having purchased it.  It’s sort of like Viagra.  Pfizer is making tons of money selling the stuff, but Bob Dole is the only guy in the world to admit that he takes it.  Ask any man on the street over the age of 50  if he uses it and you’ll get at quick, sharp, “NO!”, as he breaks eye contact and looks away… By the way, I don’t use it either…

But I digress….

So there have been zillions of copies sold, to nobody, and everybody was reading it (for the articles)…. Well, I admit I had a copy of it.  I’m not sure how I acquired it, since Amazon wasn’t in business when I got my copy, and I can’t imagine myself going into a book store to buy it any more the the other million invisible people who purchased it.  But, it’s a moot point anyway, neither here nor there.  Somehow I acquired a copy.  The book was updated in 2008, I guess to take into account cyber-sex.  But, apparently, based on my viewing of the cover of the new edition, they still use the old drawings of some guy who looks strangely like an unbathed version of Michael McDonald, from the Doobie Brothers.   Michael and his “lady” are illustrated (NOT pictured) demonstrating the variety of sexual activities that must be “instructionalized” in America, because we can’t figure out how to cook on our own, without a book, like the French did…

So anyway… all that blather really was to say that the book is a 40 year old sex manual… without good pictures….

So… back to monetization and eyeballs and all that other good stuff. 

As I thought about this more and more I realized that I had essentially two obstacles to overcome to make this a success.  One obstacle was easier to resolve than the other.  The first issue has to do with the book itself.  While I DID have a copy of the book, I currently DO NOT have a copy of the book.  This is true.  Apparently, during one of my numerous moves over the years, one of those invisible people who wouldn’t go to Barne’s and Noble and face a cashier in order to buy the book, must have purloined my copy in the midst of the moving process.  You know how chaotic moving can be, and how someone is always stealing a milk crate foot stool, or a coffee table made from one of those big telephone wire spools… 

So, alas, I would have to acquire another copy of the book.  I guess I could get it on Amazon.  Maybe I could get a cheaper, used copy at a second hand bookstore (well, on second thought, maybe not).  But I guess I’d have to “borrow” my wife’s credit card, so my name didn’t appear on any mailing list, purchase list, or in Amazon’s data mining database.  I don’t want an e-mail from Amazon saying “If you liked this book, we recommend that you’ll like these others…”.  But all this is a minor worry,  I can get around it.   Maybe go to my local 7-11 and promise to buy some high school kid some beer if he goes to Border’s and buys me a book.

So I’ve got the recipe book problem solved.  Now comes the more complex issue.

As a man who went to Catholic, all boys high school, where there were no females in sight for miles around, I am comfortable in understanding that a certain portion of the “recipes” can/will be executed  by myself sans, er, um, a sous-chef.  Once again, falling back on Wickepedia for a definition, we find that, “The sous-chef de cuisine (under-chef (or maybe under-the-chef) of the kitchen) is the direct assistant of the executive chef and is second in command  (so the bible says)… The Sous Chef will also … assist the chef de partie (line cook) when needed. 

So now I’ve got a problem.  Where am I gonna get a sous-chef?  Someone to help me with all those recipes when I can’t “go it alone”.  And then I remembered,  hey, I’m married.  I’ve got a live in sous-chef!  Once again I’m all a-tingle.  I spend some time plotting how I am going to present this idea to my wife.  I don’t like talking about my blog’s subject matter until it is actually posted because I don’t want to have it drained of its surprise impact when read for the first time.  But I’m going to have to get my wife to participate if this is going to work, so I’m gonna have to spill the beans.  The Hill Country Bubba Marital Unit is definitely left of center when it comes to politics and many things, but, alas, we are not swingers and even if I got a free pass from my wife for a temporary sous-chef (NO F’ing Way!), take a look at that slice of a picture of my face on the banner page.  Mother Nature is cruel to the aging…. Once again, NO F’ing Way!

But I carried on with my plan, knowing that my wife has been 100% supportive of my efforts to make a career shift from the world of computers to the world of art and literature.

Several days after my initial brainstorm had hatched while sitting on our glider, my wife and I were spending the early evening sitting in the same spot, sipping wine and pondering the future.  I felt the opening was there.  The alcohol was working and the time had come to float my idea to her.   I carefully explained the concepts of eyeballs, traffic, pull and push technology, and slowly I moved into discussions of Julie and Julia.  And then I laid out my plan in all its simplicity and beauty, with it’s possibilities to make us rich beyond our wildest dreams.  All I needed was a sous-chef…

Well… I finally got from my wife what I’ve been chasing… eyeballs.  Eyeballs rolling up to stare at the sky.  Followed by an exasperated grimace.  And then my wife got up and started to walk toward the house, while informing me that she was heading inside to start cooking dinner. 

 And we haven’t talked about it since…

Eyeballs….

I could suggest that you might want to check my next installment to see how I resolved all of this.  And then you could peek between your fingers and take a look at the first “accident”.  But I don’t want to disappoint my loyal fan base… all seven of those eyeballs (one of you has a glass eye, you know who you are).

It’s time to move on, like Michael Keaton in “Night Shift”.  If one idea doesn’t fly, I’ve got 50 more stupid ones bubbling in my head.

But just so you don’t get your hopes up, my next blog will be a detailed diatribe about a comment one of my friends, Peter, made, referencing his perception that I am starting to look like Aurobindo.   I know it won’t be as exciting as following my (mis)adventures cooking my way through the JOY OF SEX,  but, you’ll be back, because, now you’ve gotta know the answer to the question,…                                                       

“Who the hell is Aurobindo?”  

That’s it from Hill Country Bubba.  Remember, he ain’t as scary as he looks….

PS.  Happy Labor Day to anyone who still has a job!

Second Try

Posted in Uncategorized on August 28, 2009 by hillcountrybubba

Well I had such RAVE reviews from my first blog I thought I’d write another one.

Actually the whole thought of writing another one has been weighing heavy on my mind.  I didn’t realize how much stress starting a blog could create.  There are so many decisions to make about what to put in the thing.   It’s overwhelming.  For example, do I reveal my name? Currently, anyone who has read this blog knows who I am.  But when millions of people start reading my blog, do I really want them to know who I am and where I live.  I mean, I have a gated property, but will that really keep my fans at bay?  And how far do I go with my blog?  Do  I reveal my politics and make my blog a political rant?  How about sexual humor?  What if kids read it?  Or a future employer?  My parents have read it… what if I talk about them?  Do I talk about home life and mention my wife?  If I make a husband/wife joke and my wife reads it, will I ever get laid again?  See how easy it is just to accidentally tumble into an area of discussion without really thinking about it?  I mean, if I write about anything, I’m going to offend someone, and, given my previous life experience, I’ll probably find a way to offend everyone.

Maybe I should start over with with a new blog, totally anonymous.  That way I could write whatever I want.  Of course, then I wouldn’t even have the three viewers that I’ve already achieved.  If someone writes a blog on the internet and nobody ever reads it does it exist, like that tree falling in the woods?

As you may be beginning to discern from my writing, I have what psychologists call “Woody Allen Complex”.  I essentially worry about anything and everything, some things real… but mostly imagined.  See how easy it is to start revealing yourself on these things?  I had not planned to get into any of my psychological “issues” in my blog.  I had planned to save the really neurotic stuff for my personal journal.  If I spill all the good stuff here, nobody will want to read (translate– buy) my journals when I publish them after becoming a blog star.  If you are unemployed like me you have to have a lot of creative fantasies about how you will become rich someday via the internet.  It’s about the only way to get through the day when you’re unemployed and have no desire to pass the (entire) day away twiddling with your nuts. 

One quick aside/disclaimer… IUhyjgk4, and other such embedded garble are my cat, Mo Mo’s, contribution to the blog as he scampers back and forth across the keyboard.  I’ve deleted several other of his contributions from this blog so far.  Even though I can’t interpret them, I’m afraid he’s revealing a little more information about me than I had planned (see privacy, neuroses , and publishing deal concerns above).

So, I appear to be nearing the end of my second blog.  Given the humor and vital information offered up in my second blog, I’ll probably be lucky if anyone returns for the third installment.  Of course that presumes someone has read the second one to be turned off or bored by it.  If I can manage to generate a third post I promise it to be of such literary quality that you’ll absolutely have to come back for more.  Which will mean that I will have one more daily chore in addition to feeding the dogs, the llamas  the cats, shovelling the cat poop, making the bed,  documenting my neuroses in my journal and all the other uninteresting minutia of my life that manages to make for a full and exciting day for me, but a “virtual” cup of Nyquil for you.

Oh yeah… having to edit these damn things so there isn’t a lot of balled up grammar and misspelled words is another stressor.  Shit, why did I start this damn thing anyway.  And there goes another one of my  blog rules, no foul language.  I’m finding it extremely hard to write anything that ends up presenting me in a good light… shit!

Next Blog — Full throttle and substantive!   Have your jammies on, your teeth brushed and be propped up in bed… just in case…

Bubba

PS. Day 66 or 67 of the 100+ degree club.  My brain is too cooked to keep count .  Still no rain and we’re watching our water use due to well issues.  Splurged and actually washed my hair today!  Is this too much info for a blog?  Would it be more appropriate on a  Twitter, a Tweet or a Quack, along with info on daily bowel production and time stamps of such events?  It sucks to be culturally out of the loop…  

 PPS.  Here’s the really interesting type of stuff I think I can bring to my blogging.  Did you know that if you run spell check on this blog, the word “blog” comes up as a misspell?  Hmmm….  but apparently the word “thought” is not a word either.

PPPS.  To all who couldn’t get in earlier.  Sorry about the password protection…I’m still trying to figure out how to work this friggin’ software, I hate computers… I hope it’s readable now.

Hello world!

Posted in Uncategorized on August 24, 2009 by hillcountrybubba

This is my first post to Hill Country Bubba’s blog.  Just testing things out to see how it all works.  After 30 years in the IT industry computing is a little more complex than when I started out typing on punch cards to develop my programs for submission.

It’s 104 degrees at my house today.  The dogs are inside, one cat is inside, the llamas are hiding under the trees near the water bucket, and the scorpions are laying low…

Just outside of Austin, Texas, in the foothills of Hill Country, everything is just one of a hundred shades of brown.  After 60 some days of over 100 degree weather and hardly any rain, everything is hanging on for dear life.  If it ain’t brown from baking in the sun, it’s as limp as a 90 year old man’s noodle.

I’ve lived on the outskirts of Austin for seven and a half years now.  Moved here from Wasington DC.  Every year there’s some kind of biblical level conflagration that we go through.  Like mother nature wants to test you to see if you really want to live here.  This isn’t condo living on the lake.  This is country livin’ — in the heat.

As I mentioned, we’ve had some type of biblical event here every year since I bought the place.  Torrential rains that flooded the house, hords of grasshoppers so heavy and devastating that they ate everything in sight, even the cactus.  One year was a heavy year for scorpion infestation.  Try waking up at three o’clock in the morning with a scorpion stinging you in the crotch.  I learned the Texas two-step real quick that night.  One summer we had the katydid infestation.  Not only did they eat all the new growth on the trees,  millions of them chirped incessantly for nearly a month, all day and all night.  Even with the doors and windows closed you could hear them screaming away.  Talk about going insane… no peace for the weary.  And then there was the year of the tiny catipillars.  Once again, millions of them.  Like tiny ninjas repelling their way down their silk cords.  Every day for about 3 weeks we had to cut our way out of the house every morning because the door was papered over with caterpillar silk.  We eventually had to resort to exiting our house through the barn to get out.  For about a month after the invasion our place looked like the Munster’s summer home.  The house and all the trees were wrapped in a thick papyrus type covering, not unlike what our house got rolled with when it was TP’d when I was in high school.

So this year it’s the draught.  Have you ever turned on your spigot and no water comes out?  That’ll put a downer on your day, or week…. depending on how long it takes to track down some water.  You can’t imagine how much you think about water when you don’t have it.  Especially if you’ve spent the day tearing apart your well house in the 100+ degree heat, with the sun beating down on you.  That’s when a cup of ice water and a shower REALLY start looking good.  I don’t know what a mirage looks like to a guy crawling on his belly in the desert, but I’ve come as close to seeing one as I want to.

So much for complaining… the Hill Country is a great place to live.  People are nice, the scenery is beautiful (especially if you like brown) and there’s enough room so you can flap your wings a little… or pee out in the yard if you don’t have any water to flush the toilet!

So this completes day one of my blog, or, I guess, my blog test… we’ll see if I can figure out anything to write about that’s more interesting or funny than the other 3 billion blogs out there.  That’s it from Hill Country Bubba… he’s not as scary as he looks….