Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Here's a tidbit from Mowabb, Eutaw, circa 1955 or 1956. In my little mining camp where I lived for seven years, (Cal Uranium), near Moab, Utah, we had power from a big ol' generator. For the first year I was there, we actually had lights, but no plumbing. The mine managers and engineers made a wrong turn in a tunnel and actually missed the uranium vein. The company went broke and we soon found ourselves the only residents in a cabin in an abandoned mining camp. The manager asked my dad to stay on and look after the place for free rent plus $150.00 per month. I was the only kid on a deserted plateau near a huge red cliff. Life was lonely but not so bad. Seven years total, living among the lizards. not so bad.

Anyway, let's get to my tidbit. When Mom, Eddie and I first arrived to join Dad, (Dec, 1953), the camp was bustling with people. Jack, Margie and little Jacqui lived in the first cabin, Curt Moran lived in the second one, we had the third one and Bob Brady had the fourth one. Everyone else lived in trailer houses scattered about. One trailer was occupied by Jan, aged eleven. I was twelve. Jan was one of these extreme "hypers". Blonde, cute, and always on the move. She took a big figurative bag of energy, controversy and contention with her everywhere she went. But she was fun.

When the mine closed, Jan moved to Moab, 35 miles away. I saw her from time to time, but she was always in one frenzied situation or another. Fast-forward about 2 years. Now I'm fourteen or so and she's 12. (My memory is tricking me.) I'm sure I was 2 years older, but who's counting? Somehow, I nonchalantly asked her if she would like to go to a movie. {Yes, Mowabb had a movie theater in 1955. Sheesh.}

We no sooner got seated when a group of four or five boys her age sat down right behind us. Ugh! Well, they started right in, pulling her hair, giggling, whispering too loudly and taunting her. She would twist in her seat and tell them what a bunch of morons they were. Their noise level kept rising. I was afraid that we were all going to be thrown out. Other patrons kept staring at us in disgust. This stuff went on for at least a half hour. My patience ran out. I worried about their incredible offense to the people around us, but I was also concerned about the complete lack of respect they were showing for Jan. She was a real fireball. She held her own quite well. Finally, I turned to them and said, "hey, can you guys hold it down a little bit?" They immediately froze in their tracks. Well, in their seats. Not a peep out of them.

We sat in silence for ten minutes or so. I was beginning to pick up on the movie. Suddenly, Jan got up and stepped out. Bathroom call? Candy bar time? Oh, no. After five more minutes the manager was standing over me, asking me to step out into the lobby. {Yes, that theater even had a lobby.} With question marks plastered all over my face, {okay, figuratively}, I followed him out. I wondered how he even knew who I was. He was angry. He told me that Jan had walked out crying. As she passed him she said, "Gene Burton has just humiliated me in front of my friends." Then, she was gone into the night.

I was understandably shocked. I told him my side of the story. He went over and filled two bags of popcorn, one for him and one for me. We talked about everything under the sun. He was easy to talk to because he was my age. His dad owned the theater. (Yes, they had popcorn in 1955.) I never did get back to the movie. But I did stay after and help him sweep up all of the mess. In those extremely ancient days people threw all of their containers and wrappers on the floor. What a chore!

He and I became such good friends that I, uh I... uh... uh can't remember his name.

Epilogue: I found out later that her mom jumped all over her. "Gene was your first real date! And you treat him like this! You should be ashamed!" etc. etc.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween Blob

The time has arrived for my Halloween blob. It is all about dreams and nightmares. OR IS IT? HAhahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.... There will be three sequences. Are they true, or are they false? Heh heh. Could they be half-dreams, concocted in the mind of a retired ol' feller with too much thinkin' time on his hands? Snurk snurk.

1) I did a 10 mile hike on a hot summer day. I was exhausted, hot and sweaty. Finally, I was less than one mile from home. I wasn't sure I could finish. Suddenly a big ol' Suburban pulled up beside me. It was a friend; one whom shall remain nameless. He yelled ''hello" and offered me a ride. My heart sank. His vehicle was loaded beyond capacity. There must have been 10 or 15 people in there. Oh, did I mention that I also felt kinda, uh, smelly? I declined his offer. "Jump in. We'll make room!". I watched as all those people scrunched, wiggled, and rearranged. I climbed into a space about half my size. "Okay. I'm in!" He drove through the twisting, winding streets until we were home. HIS home. I thanked him and set out for my home.... which was MORE than one mile away.

2) I was a contestant on "Jeopardy." In Final Jeopardy, Alex gave the question (answer). "What famous building was the only one where people could drill a hole in an outside wall, pound a peg into the hole and hang a drinking cup on the peg?" Well, of course, we all missed it. Alex gave the answer (question). "It was the White house", he declared with a condescending grin. As I awakened, I wondwred if this was just for the residents or for all people who visited. That could be millions of cups. But what did it matter if this was JUST a dream? I wondered if I had really been on Jeopardy or if I had actually seen this question, concerning the earliest days of the White House, long before modern plumbing.

3) I accidentally spilled a liquid dollar bill.

Nnnighhhtmaaarre! The answer is in code. Aatbbhcceddy eewffeggrhhe iiajjlkkl lldmmrnneooappmqqs. Happy Halloween!!!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Boy, ya lose one little scrap of paper and your blobbin' days are over. At least for awhile. But, Jodi, when she isn't STEPPING on STITCH, seems to get me going in a forward motion again. I managed to comment on Barbara's blog. Surprazz, surprazz. When we were at the rappelling event one family made sure that the announcer mentioned that their guy was a MARINE. We all smiled. Ben would never let himself be so flagrently bragged on.

I mentioned in a response to Barb's blog that I only have two shirts. I lied. I have over 40 shirts. Why so many, you might ask. It's a long story and you can stop reading right here if you like. GET BACK HERE! It happened like this. I had a normal number of shirts. But the Penneys in the Cottonwoos Mall was selling everything, even the shelves. I bought a royal blue shirt at half price because I was headed for a BYU game. ROYAL blue is the TRUE Cougar blue! Ya got that?

The clothing was selling out like Carlos Boozer has been selling out the Jazz. Inexplicably, everything in Penneys pretty much sold out except the men's shirts. They dropped to 60% off. I bought a couple more. Seventy percent off. This was kinda fun, considering that we live only 2 blocks away. Eighty percent off. Wheeeee! On the tragic day when Penneys was closing that store forever, every item in the joint was selling for 90%off plus 15%off that total. Hmmm. 90% off a $40 dollar shirt equals $4.00. 15 off that is 60 cents. Beautiful $40 shirts for $3.40? Oh, yeah. They were all long sleeve with winter coming on. A huge assortment in my size. OH, YEAH.

We got there as the doors were opening. I started draping shirts over my left arm so my right hand would be free for some fast work. I piled up so many shirts that I could barely see over the pile. My arm was beginning to hurt. All things in moderation, they say. Heh heh. By this time a large crowd had gathered, and I knew I was done. I headed for the checkstand.

Suddenly, I was told to leave the store. Maybe moderation is a good standard after all. Not only was I told to leave the store, but to never come back. Well, yeah, that's easy to say on the day the store is closing forever. Was it the clerk telling me this? The manager? No, it was my wife. Maudeen had only found one pathetic little shirt. I told her how very sorry I was as I shoved past her to the land-o-glory. The checkstand.

All apologies if this sounds like a ruler event.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Ben's Adventure

Beware of the blob, it creeps and leaps, and slides and glides across the floor; right through the door, and all AROUND the wall... Help! The blob is back. If only for a moment. Gotta report on Ben Hevelone's adventure.

Ben's employer, ITT, is a huge supporter of Special Olympics. So they sponsor a ho-bunch of their employees (at a thousand dollar donation each) to drop 240 feet off the roof of the American Towers Hotel. They rappel down the northwest corner. The big boss even went down. The event was held on Friday, Aug 21.

Anyone who wanted to could go down, if they could find a sponsor or cough up the moola. I was concerned about finding a shady spot and a chair, so I took a small bucket and a pillow. I was not gonna stand for 1.5 hours! Well, when I got there I found a beautiful plaza with lovely seats near the restaurant. They had raspberry water and pineapple water for everyone to drink. It was really a well planned event, But I felt a bit like Jed Clampett arriving in Beverly Hills.

One lady kept glancing at this older fellow with a bucket and a pillow. Finally, she said, "Skyler, go say 'hi' to grandpa." It was SHELLY! Barb, Dean and the little mutton bustin' buckaroo soon arrived. The people were a-droppin' off the roof. Ben was scheduled for 1:30 but he went down at about 1:20. Very prompt.

Some of Utah's most famous dignitaries were sailing off that roof. Mayor Ralph Becker, the director of Special Olympics, at least one auto dealer and many others. I felt so fortunate to find a parking spot less than one block away. In the hot sun, of course. But I had no change. Very serious. I asked a lady if she had change for a dollar. She did not. I asked her if she had ANY change. She found a quarter and I gave her my dollar. That bought me some time. I went racing up the street looking for change. I eventually put 8 quarters in the meter and I was off to the event.

The participants were constantly being yelled at by their relatives to turn around for photo purposes. Many could not or would not turn around. They were frozen with their faces against the wall, determined to be alive at the landing. A very few of them looked down from the roof and said "huh uh. I ain't doin' this." Ben got turned around really well during his descent and Shelly and Barb got some great pictures. Go to "Cabin Fever" soon, (but not yet) for some great shots. You will also see Eli gettin' bucked off a huge, dangerous uh........... sheep. Also check Q-tips for more cute kids.

When Ben got down, he rushed into the dressing room where all the rappellers had their stuff stored (in alphabetical order). He grabbed a B H bag and came out to meet with us. As we were congratulating him, Barb and Shelly were going through his bag, looking for good stuff. (Maybe some coupons and gift certificates and things.) They soon discovered that this WAS NOT Ben's bag. He had grabbed the wrong one. He went racing back inside, hoping to get the exchange made before the other B H started calling 911. Fortunately, the guy was droppin' from the sky and knew nothing about it. Oh, yeah, who was this mysterious "other" B H? It was Bob Harmon, the president of Harmon Foods.

Well, the party soon broke up. Barb said, "Dad, can we take you to your car?" I said "why, where are you parked? She said, "under the hotel, of course. The parking is free!"

Jed Clampett slided and glided up the boiling hot sidewalk to his car.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Happy b-day

Happy birthday, Tweetie! It was on March 25, 1981. Yer grandmum and yer mum left for the doctor's office at about 9:00 a.m. for the doctor's office for a routine late-pregnancy exam. The doctor told Barb that she was already in labor and to get to the hospital immediately.

The wind was blowing like crazy that day. Grandma drove as fast as possible toward Cottonwood Hospital. They came to a great big dead end street. They hurriedly searched for a different route. G'ma was as nervous as a flea, and yer ma was trying to settle her down. Soon after they arrived, little Amanda Amber Mortensen was born. Our very first grandchild.

That evening we traveled back out to the hospital to see our new prize. Yer pa was watching "The Greatest American Hero on t.v. Ken, Jodi and Brian were there. You were the star of the production! The cutest bundle ever. Love, Grandma and Grandpa....

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Hiking City Creek

I have meant to do this blob ever since I have been blobbin. Barbara's blog about hiking gets me going. Jodi and Todd and the younguns hike when they are not running. Jodi and Brian are gearing up for Bryce Canyon in July. So I go now. Into 1993 or 1994.

I was restless one Saturday morning. It was the Saturday after Thanksgiving. I decided to hike who knows where. I parked the car at the U of U and set out. It looked like rain so I fished an umbrella out of the trunk. I walked through the cemetery. It started to rain, all right. I walked to City Creek Canyon. Does this sound like a parallel (but opposite season) to Barb's blog? I was in pretty good shape then. I could not turn back. Up the canyon I went. The rain turned to sleet. Like most unprepared hikers, I kept a'goin'. Somewhere in my brain I knew I would have to do it all in reverse. (Not walking backward,but...) The rain turned to sleet. It was coming down sideways. Dumb. But I was having fun, dang it! Two or three joggers came hurrying down the hill. Two woman joggers passed me going up the hill.

That gave me courage. If they could run it I could walk it. The sleet turned to snow, still coming straight in from the north. I hiked all the way to the water treatment plant and a bit beyond. The gal in a bright green outfit came running back down. I finally knew that I had done enough. The snow was beginning to pile up. Down the hill I went, telling myself that I was having fun! I kept looking over my shoulder for the smaller gal in a gray and black jogging suit. I was tiring greatly by the time I reached the mouth of the canyon.

I decided to stop and wait a bit to make sure she got out safely. I knew some things and I "fer sure" didn't know some things. She was definitely alone up that creek. If she had fallen on the icy pavement she was very much alone "up the creek". A broken hip? A sprained knee? A head injury? On the other hand, there were many side trails up the side of the canyon and over toward the state capitol building. A simple manuever on a dry day, but in this weather the likelihood seemed remote that she went there. Cell phones were at least 5 years out.

Would her family become concerned and come straight to the canyon, see her car and go find her? Was she alone in every way with no one mounting a search? Was she sitting in front of a warm fire at this moment? I waited a long time. She could not have run that far up the canyon. Not in this weather. My heart sank. I could not leave her up there and read about her in the next morning's Desnews. I certainly couldn't walk into town and give the cops a cockamamie story of a missing person.

I started up the hill. I walked the better part of a mile. Suddenly, she rounded the bend, running at the same expert pace I had seen before. I turned and started back down. She gave me the strangest look as she ran by me. She recognized my umbrella and understood my instant turnabout. "You are a serious runner," I said. She stopped and walked with me. "Saturdays are my only day to escape my crazy life. I run no matter what." She never acknowledged that I was some sort of wacky guardian angel.. She never thanked me for anything. We chatted aimlessly all the way to her car. She asked me if she could take me anywhere.

I could not allow her to try driving up the hill to the U. of U. I declined. I cleaned her windows as she started her auto. I knew one more thing. I knew that she knew. I would have never left her up there alone. When I got to the city streets I called home. Jodi wanted to come and get me. I couldn't let her go out in that mess. I don't remember ever seeing a bus.

I was a ward Sunday School president at the time. The next morning my phone rang. It was my next door neighbor, a SS teacher. He said, "I'm not going out in this! Bye." I had no time to tell him I had just done fourteen miles "in this". For fun.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


I cannot for the life of me get my comments through the "fog". I tried to comment on Amanda's blog. Hey! That rhymes!. Anyhoo, no, I didn't think too much of the music video. I liked the story of Linnie Luuu and the tooth. My dad always used a pair of rusty pliars on me. Well, they weren't rusty. And he was always careful to keep me smiling. I was proud to have him pull my teeth. The pliars were actually hooked for easy access. Shudder. How well I remember. I don't even try to comment on Barbara's blog. I think her blog is reeeeally difficult to connect my comments with. Maybe the Burton-Hevelone internet connection winds through northern Canada.

Barb, yer mum and I remember the photo of you with the canteen. Yer ma choked up a bit when she saw it. That whole blog was very touching. I think Ideeho actually is somewhere in northern Canada. There is a highway from Vernal to Montpelier. So, maybe it won't be an awful drive. You and Wendy need to stay in close touch...d'Pa

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


Have you ever noticed that most people say oapmeal instead of oatmeal? Including myself? I think it may be because we are already closing our mouth in preparation of voicing the "m". This causes the "t" to be blocked out. It is impossible to say "t" with your mouth closed. A perfectly unintended "p" creeps in without our knowledge. It happens thousands of times for each of us unless we just don't like oatmeal and never utter the word. Were we to perfectly enunciate the word "oatmeal", it would roll off our tongue (or tongues, collectively) sounding unnatural. Say " oatmeal" out loud ten times. Pay paticcalar attention to the "t". Doesn't that sound weird? Forget 10 times. Three times will suffice. OaTmeal. OaTmeal. OaTmeal. Now say "oapmeal " once. Your life is now back to normal.

What's all this commotion about Facebooking? It seems to be replacing blogging, and blogging has only been around for a few months, at least in my world. A Facebook entry takes only a few seconds. Bloggers (and especially blobbers) get long winded and fill a lot of space. The world is moving too fast for us old crows.

The Deseret News, on March 2, Analyzed Facebooking. 175 million users. Fastest growing group of users: 30 and older. 120 friends per average user. 3 billion minutes per day. I don't know if that's worldwide or just Maudeen. She is on that thing endlessly, and one month ago she didn't even know what Facebook is. She called it "Faceplate". The site was originally started among college students, but has now grown to include people of all ages. Addictive? Yup. Dangerous? Not much evidence. I cannot stop blobbing. Especially when I'm eating Pizza. I go now.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

They Drown Horses, Don't They?

I just found out (loooooong after everyone else found out) that Connor is on the Jordan High water polo team. The Watson/Reese gang were at our house on Sunday, and Connor was telling folks about his new endeavor. I must'a been in the other room at the time. I didn't hear a word of it. Well, maybe I was sitting next to Connor at the time. Real, actual, meaningful, axiomatic, conclusive dialog cannot happen at our house with the gang here, because there are so many lower jaws a'flappin' (mostly mine) that a constructive message cannot be heard through the gaggle of raised voices.

Anyway, I was excited to EVENTUALLY hear of d'Conman's new groove. But I have some questions. Isn't it kinda cruel to make all those horsies swim around in a swimming pool? Don't the horses make the pool sorta - uh - unsanitary? I know that in parades they have people following the horses with poop-r-scoopers, but how in the heck do they accomplish the cleanup in a pool? Maybe they feed the ponies marshmallows for two days before the match, hoping for a "floating" arrangement instead of a "sinking" one. That would reealy help. How in the world do they get the horses out of the pool? Just wonderin'. Guess I will just have to mosey over there and watch a match as soon as possible. I am really looking forward to it.

Blobbin' at random: I got a comment from the Whitneys on my last blob. Wow. That was great. Things cannot be the same on Altair Drive, but the old friendships are forever. Barb-of-the-faraway-hills e-mailed us and says that they are up to their ears in mud. Well, ya know what they say.... Spring mud brings summer weeds.... It's all good. Brian has been (and/or will be) in 8 or 10 cities in 3 or 4 weeks. Eek. Coast to coast. Eeeek. We have had 2 deaths in 2 days in the 'hood, a couple of weeks ago. One of them was a 29 year old feller who MAY have violated a prescription instruction. Watch those instructions!! I go now. I have been 163 hours without a Pepsi. I seriously go now.

Monday, February 16, 2009


This is a tutorial from Babs. I'm trying new stuff.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Beware o' the blob.

If the wind is blowing from the northwest at 10 knots, I will blob today. If the wind is blowin' from the southeast at 20 knots I will not blob today. If the wind........... Aw, fer crying out loud, I will blob. Be warned. I am dreadfully low on material.

Maudeen is doing very well with her new blog. She has fabulous stories from her childhood and many current items, also.
Most of our condos in here must have a strange magnetic field in the posts that support the carports, and these fields attract auto bumpers. Bang. Thump. Whoops. You get the picture. Jennifer says that when she bumped her post a few years back, her son, Zack, told everyone he had been in a major accident, with whiplash, seatbelt rash and much emotional suffering.

Well, we lost a post last week. A very elderly lady tried to pull into our carport, thinking it belonged to our neighbor Marcie. I called Marcie's husband, Paul, and mentioned it to him. He said that she was so helpless in her old age that he would rather not mention it to her, but merely pay the damage himself. I told him that I didn't expect the LOL to pay for it and that I would take care of it. (You thought LOL meant laugh out loud when it really means Little Old Lady, huh?)

In a subsequent phone conversation, Marcie offered to pay half the damages. Let's tabulate. The redwood posts were $33. The cedar ones were about $19. I found one made of pine or fir for $6. Here is my dilemma. Do I charge Paul and Marcie $3 or do I charge $3.14 including tax. I'm getting a splitting headache dealing with this issue. Another issue is this: Should I have gotten a waterlogged fir post for $3 that might warp and ooze pine-tar for years to come, or gotten the cedar one which would have resisted beetles and warping for decades? Oh, the pain, the pain. We already had some primer and brown paint, so the paint isn't anything they should pay. Oh, I'm sure they'll bring it up.

On the day of the accident, we discovered that our screen door into the patio from the carport was sticking quite badly. It took us a full week to realize that the LOL had also bumped our fence, driving the fence one inch south, leaving us with a fence to move northward. This should be easy, unless the 38 year old fence posts have been snapped at ground level. This will not be easy to determine, considering that the posts are completely hidden behind the fence slats. Doing a ricketiness test will do no good, because the whole fence is a rickety mess already.

Maybe I could casually approach Paul and Marcie with: $3.14 for the post, $2.50 for the paint. $0.00 for the labor and $1299.99 for "possible damage" to the fence. I am sooooo clever. Wait a minute. What am I doing discounting my labor? Here's the solution to the whole problem. If the wind is blowing from the north at ten knots, I will bill them for $1500.00. If the wind is.............

And you thought I was just being silly when I said "Beware of the Blob."

Friday, January 30, 2009

Blobbin' to the Oldies

HI!.....Sorry Richard Simmons. But Barbara sent a video of two newlyweds puttin' on a show. Am I getting wierd or what? This is the first time in my life I would rather watch the boy dance than the girl! AND THEY DID THE CHICKEN DANCE! Why oh why did they cut away from the chicken dance after just a few seconds? Eli can teach them both a few moves. I'm flapping my arms and singing do do do do do do do. Do do do do do do do. Hey! you just try typing while doing the Majestic Chicken Dance. If the Chicken Dance had shown up 225 years earlier, George Washington would never have bothered with the Minuet! Martha Washington would have died early. From laughter.

Jodi taught me how to comment and I guess I'm doing ok. But I still can't post my own blob. So kudos and accolades to Iggggggieeeee. I hop I don't stress her out too much with my endless needs. She would never complain even if I did. Why izzit that Brian has become almost as famous as Yiyi when the subject of The Dance comes up?

Here's an important philosophical question. Or maybe it is merely a functional question. But it is a question that must, after all these years, be answered and put to rest. Here goes: Does a man shave each morning or does he reshave? I'm being serious here. This is a very pertinent question. Let's say I'm playing Scrabble and I find myself with the opportunity to play the word "reshave". Can I play it? Or will it spit that despicable "foul" message at me? I know what YOU would do. You would play "shaver", forget about it and move on. Fine, okay? FINE. But that would only play six letters, leaving me without my fifty point "BINGO" bonus.

One school of thought says that he is reshaving. Period. It's a repetitive process. Case closed. Another school of thinkin' says that he gets a whole new crop of facefuzz every day. So it's a whole new process every day except on Saturday. So it's shaving. Case closed. Yer Ma, who still sometimes calls her Facebook "Faceplate" will now prob'ly start calling it Facefuzz, but that's her problem. Billy Mays has his own cowardly answer. He doesn't shave at all. I myself generally do the 30-second "halfshave". Not intentionally. Just sloppily. A Norelco shaving (oops, I mean reshaving) head is supposed to be changed every 6 to 12 months. Mine is 26 months old and counting. I wonder which store sells the darn things. If it gets much older I will start being guilty (through no fault of my own) of the "quartershave."

Thanks, El Muncho-g-buncho. Good dance................d'Pa

P.S. Why do they call it "bingo" when with no additional effort, they coulda called it "HOME RUN"? Dummies.

PPS: My vote goes to REshaving. It suuure seems REdundant to me.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


I have been admiring Barbara's and Jodi's fantabulous snow scenes in their blogs. I'm jealous, so here goes. I have a snow blob. And it ain't no snow job. In fact, like most grandpas from the faraway hills, I have endless snow stories, but, mercifully, I will only drop one snowflake on yez today. Sorry, no pictures.

I grew up in the crown of the Rocky Mountains, (the literal crown) in Alma, CO., near Breckenridge. Funny thing. Mother Nature gave the Breckens the best ski slopes and the best snow. The North wind brought heavy snow into Breckenridge and gave us a bit less. I'd have argued that at the time. There weren't many kids in tiny Alma, so I was called upon to shovel heavy snow from August 'til June. Oh, alright. November through March. I shoveled driveways, walkways, doorways and paths to the woodshed. I even shoveled under clothlines so ladies could hang out the "warsh". People would tell me that their car was located somewhere under a drift. I would dig 'til they were mobile again. Hour after hour, I shoveled, then it was off to Chuck Bilto's store to spend my cache on a couple of Heath Bars. Life was good.

We had no ski resort. I'm not sure Breckenridge did either. We were just two abandoned old mining towns. Times, they have-a-changed. Breck is "world-class" and we're still the po-folk neighbors. However, when I was about 8 years old, some entrepreneuring genius decided to build a ski resort, about a half mile north of town. He cleared the timber and built a rope-lift. He sold hot chocolate and stuff. The rope-lift consisted of a thick rope running through a series of old automobile wheels. (No tires, just rusty steel rims.) The more wheels, the more needed tension for the rope. I guess. Everything was driven by a Model A engine. Thence to the top of the mountain (okay, hill.) with the rope. Thence through another couple of rims on a pole and back to point A.

Miraculously, this thing worked. Folks would grab the rope and go flying up the hill. I thought the rope looked to be infinitely more fun than skiing back down. On the first actual ski day, I scrounged up a pair of skis somewhere. Maybe the "resort" rented them to me. I dunno. I headed for the rope. No one else had any trouble latching onto the rope. But the rope latched onto me. It flung me onto my teakettle. I dusted myself off. (does anyone really "dust" wet, packed snow off?) I tried again. Same result. Why didn't someone help me? Oh well. I was too embarrassed and too hurt to try again. That rope could really jerk me about. I started up the gigantic mountain (moderate hill) on foot. To my horror, there was insufficient room between the lift and the traveled slope for foot traffic. Get hit by a skier going up or get hit by a skier coming down.

And, oh the language! "Hey, kid! Get off the %&$*?" course!"... "Hey, kid.You're puncturing the snow!" Exhausted, wet, cold and frightened, I stopped climbing at about the halfway point. I strapped on the skis. Oh. Oh. I couldn't ski. Plop. Stand up. Go again. Plop. Lose a ski. Chase it. Look up the hill. Dodge for my life. Plop. when I finally got to the bottom of the hill, some well meaning adult said to me, "hey, kid. Ya gotta learn how to do this before you do this."

I think this is the first time I have told this story. (I hope a haven't told it in my Alma book. How funny, to write it and then forget it.) The reason I have been holding it in is because there is no punch line. No climactic moment. No blazing finish. No great lesson for living.

So here is your assignment. Comment. In your comment put a short finish on the story. You could say that I used that setback as motivation to become a great Olympic master of the slalom. Strike that. I still can't ski a lick, though I live in the shadow of Snowbird and Brighton. Put YOUR finish on the story.

This all happened almost 60 years ago. Yipe. I'm still young. I'm still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up. Sixty years? Double yipe. Incidentally, the ski resort failed during its first or second season.

Post script: One fun thing eventually happened on that hill, about ten years later. The hill was so steep that we would have been afraid to go down it at top speed in Richard's old Model A. But the hill had begun re-growing a beautiful stand of quakie trees. We found that we could go racing down the hill at break-neck speed, plowing the trees before us. What fun. I go now, before I think of more goofy stuff.

Post post script: If I had had a million dollars in the late forties I could have bought one hundred thousand Model A's at a rate of 10 bucks each. They were EVERYWHERE! I swear I go now.

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Today, I read Barbara's blog. In it, she said that we should all be printing some (all?) of our blogs to build blog books. Unfortunately, if I build one, it will truly be a BLOB book; because, during compilation I will surely be spilling blobs of chocolate on it. Or maybe I will be blubbering or blobbering about insignificant things. Speaking of insignificant things........ I'm allowing my mind to wander, here...........

I think it was Jodi who encountered the word "infinitesimal" last year. She laughed and laughed . She said. "how could such a stupid word exist? How could anyone ever use such a dumb word?" I assured her, oh yes, I assured her , that it DOES exist. When I was a youngster, if my mom caught me blubbering about some insignificant thing, she would say, "Gene, why are you complaining and making such a huge issue about something so infinitesimally small?" I would suddenly feel infinitely small, and I would somehow find the strength to get over it and get on with it. The raging red in my embarrassed face would slowly become dissapatory.

Now, why did "blubbering" remind me of "infinichickenately" or however you say it? I dunno. I move on now.

This next segment is infinimarshmallowly small. I spent one year in college. Carbon College. Forerunner to College of Eastern Utah. Art scholarship. Found Grandma. (She was not yet a Grandma.) Four kids and 47 years later I rediscovered artwork. My skills , of course, have not advanced during that time. But I have a terrific idea about a painting I feel the need to do. (Isn't that artsy, to feel a NEED to paint?) Hint: it will be of my childhood. I will blob on my progress. I will post a photo of it when it's done, even if it's awful. Hint: it will have nothing to do with green suspenders. Sorry, Brian.

Grandma has as many, if not more, great stories from her childhood as I do. But she won't be doing a blog soon. She could type 337 words per minute in high school. She is far more advanced in "computatorology" than I am. But she won't blog. I think she is afraid of sounding like she's bragging if she says good things about herself. I don't get it. Heck, I have endless marvelous things to say about me AND IT AIN'T BRAGGING. Embellishing and lying, maybe, but no bragging.

SO, I will be setting up a blog on Gramma, or at least including her stories on my blob. She's such a star.

I can't wait to find Shelly's blog.

News flash: Todd, Jodi and the bumpkins will be over on Sunday. Jodi is gonna teach me - once and for all, how to comment. That is real futuristic, 22nd century progress. Maybe she will even teach me how to post my own blob. Hi ho, hi ho, it's off to anywhere but work I

Monday, January 19, 2009


I have a very real sorrow for tragedy and misfortune. Today I saw a Hostess 18-wheeler on the side of the road with a wheel missing - probably a tire somewhere getting repaired. Do you realize what this means? Thousands of little children will be crying themselves to sleep tonight because of no Twinkie.

Barb, Jodi and Amanda all have terrific blogs for me to read. Even if I can't comment very well, and even if Jodi's blog has metamorphosed into a health blog, I hop to keep up really well. In fact, I am going to read everyone's blog and do my commenting on this blob. I hop it works. I hop everyone will hit my blob to get my comments on YOUR blog. I hop that doesn't sound too self-serving. I hop..........I hop......Suddenly, I have a great craving for pancakes, even though it's 7:30pm. There is an IHOP less than two blocks away. I go now.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Revisit beetdiggers

No one knows the truffles I've seen. Do tddruffles have ddridges? We got a gift box of em and I can't leave them alone. I'll bet soldiers on bivouac get tired of dragging that heavy truffle bag around.

Last week I ran a quiz about how true my blob was. The consensus was that I was merely embellishing. That is correct. I screamed at Connor twice, trying to say hi to him. He didn't hear me. But we had a good chat over cookies. He was truly difficult to spot because "they all look alike."

Not too much going on around here. Talked with Todd on the cell phone the other day. Told him I was on the freeway. Told him I would be late meeting him at the shop because I had to drop some cargo off at the house. The cargo really screamed at me. I guess yer ma doesn't like being called cargo.

Went to the store yesterday. got into a nice short checkout line. Good thing, because I was in a real hurry. Uh oh. The lady being checked out was contesting every item. I was incredulous as I stood there watching. Finally, in a huge demonstrative huff, I gathered up all my stuff up and marched over to the service desk. The clerk there was happy to check me out. I told her all about the female "Bill Slowski" in line 6.

My clerk said, "oh oh, I don't have a scale, and I cannot do your bananas." "just set 'em aside", I said. "I am in a real hurry." She set them aside, but then she whispered to me, "how about we just charge $2.00 for the bananas?" "Oh, great," sez I. I would not have wanted to face yer ma without those bananas. I am very concerned about yer ma's consumption of bananas. But, she does have a rotatable thumb, so I guess everything is okay.

As I turned to leave, I glanced over at line 6. "Look,"sez I, "that woman is still arguing about every item, and she still has a long way to go." "Yes," sez the clerk, "It's this new strained economy. We get at least 4 people like her in here every day."

I left the store with an achy breaky heart for that poor lady. Hope everything turns out well for her. There is always a higher road for me to take. Attitudes are always changeable and improvable. There is always room for compassion for people who struggle. For example, I try to never say anything bad about yer ma. Well, technically, I did call her "cargo". And a monkey. But that proves my point. There IS always room for improvement in my attitude. Paraphrasing Yoda, go now I.

Thursday, January 8, 2009


Question: What is a beetdigger?
Answer: One who digs beets.
What is a Jordan Beetdigger?
Connor Reese. Go Connor, go Connor.
I attended a swim meet today. Connor set at least 2 personal bests.
He's a Sophomore, so he didn't beat those super-Seniors.
But he is a terrific developing swimmer.
I couldn't recognize him for the life of me.
Who says that our youth have an obesity problem?
All the swimmers were skinny as rails.
I could not tell them apart.
Well, one guy had an eagle's nest on his chest.
Not a tatoo. Hairy Potter, maybe. Or Prince Hairy.
I guess I remember some hairy beasts from high school.
But this guy took me by surprise.
It is really hard to tell swimmers apart when they are all dressed the same.
Or should I say UNdressed the same, har, har.
Plus they wear those headgear things with a big J on the side. (Jordan)
Oh, I know what they are. Shower caps. And they wear goggles.
My seat - lucky me - was under a large horizontal pipe.
The condensation dripped on me non-stop for 2 hours.
But that's all good, I guess. I won't need to shower for two days.
Blake, Bailee and Rissy were there close to me.
"Hey, Connor," I screamed. "You are gonna be blogged."
"Uh, That's not Connor," Blake said.
I quickly redirected. "Hey, Connor, My friend, You are gonna get blobbed."
"I don't think that's Connor," said Bailee.
The sound in that acoustical masterpiece of a swim-gym surpasses the noise in the Rose Bowl.
It was crazy-deafening in there. Crrrazy.
Jodi was at the far end and I didn't catch her before she left.
I was DEEjected. I yelled goodbye to Connor.
"Not him," said Rissy.
My cell phone rang as I crossed the parking lot.
It was Todd. "Dang it, I missed Jodi," I complained.
"Oh, she is just getting the treats for the team. She hasn't left."
I hurried back in with hope renewed. Jodi and Rissy were handing out treats.
I had one. But not without a twinge of fear that one Beetdigger would be left out.
What if it was Connor???
I could envision him standing in a corner with a tragic, distraught expression on his face.
The treat was terrific. Homemade.
One woman looked at them and asked me what they were.
"Rice Crispy squares," I replied. "Only problem is, Jodi doesn't understand 'square'."
They were half-moon shaped. Was I so wrong?? Hmmm?
"Oh, yummie," she said. "I need that recipe. And the half moon shape is so darling."
Out the corner of my eye, I thought the gal gave me a bit of a glare.
I gotta admit that those treats were special. They had chocolate inside.
Connor appeared, looking dapper in his street clothes.
He was ready to face the rest of his day.
"Great job, Connor! You are going to be the star of my blob!"
I think he had water in his ears. He didn't hear me as he went out the door. I go now.

Question: Although this was all based on factual events, vote below if you believe some of it was :
A) Embellished
B) Downright lying
C) Unrestrained daydreaming
D) Criminal offense

I ain't tellin'. Go now.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

January Blob-blahs

My goodness! Can it be January 8 already? No. Just testin' ya. It's only da 7th. Wow, I'm really on a roll.

Question: Why did Chloris Leachman get invited to participate in "Dancing With the Stars"?
Answer: Because Phyllis Diller had another commitment. Question: Have Chloris and Phyllis ever been seen together at the same time?

Today is Christmas in Russia. Hop the Darren is havink a good day. My Russion is REALLY not very good.

Snow snow and more snow. Those poor Watsons are really getting it.

Ramblin' a bit: I hit Jodi's blog but couldn't bring up the comments. Hop that doesn't happen again. Also, The last blob I sent her for posting never got posted. Prob'ly my goofy mistake. Again. As usual. I gotta get busy and learn my own posting! Jot does so much for me. Barb says I won't have any problem learning posting and commenting. I think I'll get Brian to tutor me on the phone WHILE I get registered with Google. Maybe that will help.

Here's one that I heard in the 1940's..... What happened to the aviatrix who backed up too close to a spinning propeller? Disaster. Don't get it? E-mail me at for an explanation. Don't worry. You'll get it. Oh! You've already got it! Cool.

Well, anyway, have a great January. Many many thanks to everyone who has commented. I WILL learn to comment in return. I will. I go now.