Jimmy’s #315 –7/12/2016

“The USA has become government by the highest bidder because USA voters do not hold politicians accountable.” Don Mashak

Welcome everyone to Drivel Over Coffee, the blog; musings, memories and whatnot infused with the earthy aroma of French Roast Coffee with a dose of rant mixed in on occasion. My look upon life as seen through dog-licked glasses. Lest you forget, the tag line “Life as seen through dog-licked glasses” originated from the penchant of Barney & Max, the Grand Pugs, of licking my glasses more frequently than I could clean them so I just got used to them being smeared and dripping of Pug drool. I apologize for that last image.

Musings –I had some news from Jimmy, proprietor of Jimmy’s Grill & Bait Shop, and Charles, not his real name, last week. It had been quite some time since I had been there. Missed a number of the Old Farts Coffee Klatch meetings. Been so many I was afraid I would have to take the initiation again. Last week as you may recall, depending on your age, that OSHA and the health dept. had both inspected Jimmy’s, and given him several citations for needed improvements. This forced Jimmy to succumb to Big Oil and allow BO to run its Bakken pipe line thru Jimmy’s parking lot on its way to Illinois, resulting in a cash windfall for Jimmy to make those improvements. The first payment has arrived and Jimmy used it wisely for the most part anyway. As the health dept. wanted a new sewer line installed, Jimmy has run a new line out the back of the shop, under the cliff-side dining/fishing dock, and right down to the river’s edge. I remind you that Drivel Over Coffee is strictly confidential and may not be sent to anyone using an unsecured server. I certainly don’t want the DNR showing up any time soon at Jimmy’s. IMG_0939

Jimmy didn’t take this pipeline, OSHA, Health Dept. thing lying down. He surmised he had an untapped financial gold mine in the cooking oil market. Not wanting to miss a drop of his new secret cooking oil and sauce when the pipe line becomes operational, he has installed the aerating spigot in the minnow tank, and ran the garden hose to the filling station where stood the first Blatz keg. Being the entrepreneur he is, he has approached some other owners of the finer eating establishments in the region about using his soon to be available new secret cooking oil and sauces. This was quite an undertaking for Jimmy. If you haven’t met Jimmy, he is how shall we say, unkempt. To go on sales calls, he had to bath, shave, get hair trimmed, wash his apron, change his underwear and shine his sandals. So far he has signed contracts with Leo’s Donuts in Potterville, DB’s Wienerlicious over in Hooterville, and a burger place, much like his, over on the Mississippi. Negotiations are underway for booth space at the Saturday farmers market and New Bo. And, if he buys enough cords and electrical tape, Danno may let him have a counter display. Personally, I hope Jimmy doesn’t become so occupied promoting his new products that he’s seldom in his own place, as I fear Jimmy’s would lose much of its ambiance, whatever that is. Jimmy’s helper, Mustard, is a long way from being Jimmy. Mustard you see is a brick shy of a load. It was on Mustard’s watch that some night crawlers actually took up residence in the ground beef. It wasn’t caught until one of us bit into a burger and got a surprise.

Jimmy had another disappointment last week also. The city council turned Jimmy down, with hardly a word of discussion, on his written application for a 100%, 10 yr. TIF for his improvements. He appeared before the council, ready to answer questions, and all he heard was that he misspelled “maitre d”, and a resounding NO. The new bib overalls he wore might have affected their vote also.

That’s it from Jimmy’s for this week. Next report likely after the DNR gets “wind” of the new sewer. Ssshh! (c)

Memories – You know you were a farm kid if you licked salt blocks just to see what it tastes like… and it wasn’t bad.

I’m a secondhand vegetarian; cows eat grass, I eat cows.

Why were barns red? Do you know? Hundreds of years ago, farmers painted their barns with linseed oil to help seal the wood and keep it from rotting. Rust was mixed with the oil to keep fungi and moss from growing on the wood. This turned the oil red. Barns today are still painted red in honor of the tradition.

Life is good when the barn is where your best memories have been made.

Speaking of barns, ours was white. Typical 2 story affair. I loved the barn with the hogs, cows and chickens. We had chickens on the second floor which usually is a hay mow. We had converted it a few years earlier. We collected the eggs every day, washed, graded and packed them in egg crates. I hated gathering the eggs. Those chickens seeing you had an egg pail in your hands turned mean. They didn’t want to give up the fruit of their hard work. I mean it was not like they were going to make an omelet. They would sit in the nest, clucking with an evil look in their eyes. I would, as gently as possible, reach under the chicken and grab the eggs. The old hens would delight in pecking the H### out of your hand or arm. We had 2,000 very angry chickens.

The barn was home to our cows and their calves. My dad would milk the cows. Fortunately, I was too little to help with that. I was a bit ornery though. Ever tried riding a calf? I have. I remember one time this calf was in a pen in the barn. The pen was maybe 10 feet by 10 feet. Not very big. Feeling full of myself, I got up on the gate to the pen and waited for the calf to get close to me. I jumped onto his back which immediately surprised him and he started bucking. Now, I had watched the Lone Ranger jump on his horse many times without incident. I assumed it would be the same with a calf. What I failed to realize was there was not one thing to hold onto once on his back. So here he is bucking like crazy, I am bouncing up and down like a yoyo. My ride seemed like 10 minutes or so but in reality was probably more like 10 seconds. I crashed against the pen walls hit the floor and got stomped with one angry calf. Just another adventure of an Iowa farm boy.

Whatnots- I wonder why we are so so obsessed with trying to find intelligent life on other planets, when we can’t even find intelligent life here?

1448058781322-c6My boss said, “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have.” Now I’m sitting in a disciplinary meeting dressed as Batman.

I went grocery shopping on an empty stomach yesterday. You never do that. I am now the proud owner of aisle 4.

A man was conducting an All Service briefing one day, and he posed the question: “What would you do if you found a scorpion in your tent?” A Sailor said, “I’d step on it.” A Soldier said, “I’d hit it with my boot.” A Marine said, “I’d catch it, break the stinger off, and eat it.” An Airman said, “I’d call room service and find out why there’s a tent in my room.”

One dark night outside a small town in Minnesota, a fire started inside the local chemical plant, and in a blink of an eye it exploded into massive flames. The alarm went out to all the fire departments for miles around. When the volunteer fire fighters appeared on the scene, the chemical company president rushed to the fire chief and said, “All of our secret formulas are in the vault in the center of the plant. They must be saved. I will give $50,000 to the fire department that brings them out intact.” But the roaring flames held the firefighters off.

Soon more fire departments had to be called in as the situation became desperate. As more firemen arrived, the president shouted out that the offer was now $100,000 to the fire department who could bring out the company’s secret files. Still no takers. From the distance, a lone siren was heard as another fire truck came into sight. It was the nearby rural township volunteer Fire Company composed mainly of Norwegians over the age of 65. They had fled Europe after WW2, and established their own town. To everyone’s amazement, the little run-down fire engine, operated by these old Norwegians, passed all the newer sleek engines parked outside the plant and drove straight into the middle of the inferno! Outside, the other firemen watched as the Norwegian old-timers jumped off and began to fight the fire with a performance and effort never seen before. Within a short time, the Norsemen had extinguished the fire and saved the secret formulas. The grateful chemical company president joyfully announced that for such a superhuman feat he was upping the reward to $200,000, and walked over to personally thank each of the brave, though elderly, Norse firefighters.

The local TV news reporters rushed in after capturing the event on film and asked, “What are you going to do with all that money?” “Vell,” said Olee Larsen, the 70-year-old fire chief, “Da furst ting vee doo is fix da brakes on dat truck!”

I drink coffee for your protection!

Remember your Vietnam Veterans – All gave some, some gave all!! If I can make at least one-person smile, or laugh till they leak, then my day was not wasted. Until we meet again -TA!