The Inside Jokes Amid The Art At Nogglestead

I mentioned that I could not hear The Miracles sing “Love Machine” without thinking of chickens. I failed to mention that this commercial is my beautiful wife’s favorite commercial of all time, which will come in handy knowing that as our children like to ask for a favorite this or that regularly.

Here’s the commercial again for your reference:

Last Saturday, a boy and I had some time to kill before picking the other lad up from an activity, so we went to a local antique mall to do some Christmas shopping. Which means, mostly, buying things for ourselves and maybe a trinket or two for someone down the Christmas list.

I passed on a Rooster print with iron that I thought might go nicely for my aunt, whom I think has a rooster or chicken theme going. If not, she has a rooster or chicken theme from Brian going, since I bought her a large filigree chicken last year.

But we were also looking to replace something in our kitchen, a print in plastic frame that we had over our sink for years, far beyond the normal lifespan of this cheap particular bit of postery that I bought at a garage sale some decade or two ago.

So after passing it, I returned to the rooster art at the antique mall, and I thought it might do double duty: I would hang it up in the kitchen and see if it flew as a replacement, and if not, it would be great for Aunt Sandy.

Also, as I did so, I did not mention to Heather that I did; I expected her to say, “Is that a …. chicken?” when she saw it. That, in itself is an in-joke: Some decades ago, when she was a comely young HR staffer for the St. Louis County government, she would interview building inspectors by showing them a series of photos and asking them to identify possible violations. One of the photos had a chicken, which was back in those dark ages, not allowed within the county. One incredulous interviewee looked at the photo for building violations, and then said, “Is that…a chicken?” which my then beautiful girlfriend beautiful then-girlfriend, now-beautiful now-wife (::sweats the construction there::) repeated with the same intonation the fellow under interview used.

But she did not.

And, apparently, she now likes chickens in the kitchen. Art chickens, anyway. A couple of years ago, I did a woodburning of a rooster on a board and put a couple of hooks on it, and somehow it replaced a pair of paintings by my great grandmother on our dining room wall. When she saw the new rooster above the sink, she liked it (sorry, Aunt Sandy, unless you really don’t do chickens, in which case, hey, lucky for you!).

It took less than fourteen hours for the Denny’s commercial allusion to appear:

Which she also loved when she saw it on Sunday afternoon.

It stayed on the art work for the week because I was too busy and lazy to remove it, but I see that it has migrated to the woodburned rooster by her hand.

Perhaps I’ll end up being lazy enough that it will remain there until such time as our kitchen is filled enough with chickens that it can make a circuit regularly.

But I doubt, actually, that the tape will last that long. Nor her desire for more chickens in the kitchen.

The Hard Rock CD That The Blogosphere Insisted I Get

Danger Danger’s The Return of the Great Gildersleeves:

Well, all right, maybe not, but the old timey blogs pointed the way.

First, on the Facebook, Blackfive posted a song by eighties band Danger Danger:

I liked the sound–man, do I miss the eighties–so I bought the debut CD.

When I was thinking about picking up something else, I looked for another Danger Danger album, and their 2000 release was called The Return of the Great Gildersleeves.

If you’re a Lileks reader, you know who the Great Gildersleeves was. He posts about the old radio show all the time. Including today.

So I had to have it.

I don’t regret it; it’s a pretty good album.

So thanks to all those guys who I’ve been reading for years (one of whom actually visited our home in Casinoport, if you can believe it, making me like a real blogger back in the day) for the pointer.

“How’s the hard rock/songbird balance going these days, Brian J.?” you might ask.

Well, it’s not fifty/fifty these days.

Here are the last ten albums I got:

  • Danger Danger Return of the Great Guildersleeves
  • Fozzy Judas
  • Danger Danger Danger Danger
  • Disturbed Indestructible
  • Hellyeah Unden!able
  • Herb Alpert Music Volume 1
  • Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey Music from the Motion Picture
  • All That Remains A War You Cannot Win
  • Ozzy Osbourne No More Tears
  • Sacha Boutros Live from Hawaii

I just haven’t heard anything compelling on WSIE and have been looking for stuff to put on my iPod at the gym.

But I’ve got The Return of the Great Gildersleeves. If the blogosphere as any recommendations for songbirds, I’m all ears.

Prime Comestibles

I recently discovered José Olé Chicken and Cheese Tacquitos come in a strangely enumerated 37 pack:

What, did the authorities in Mexico gullotine frozen food makers that shipped 35 when the customer ordered 36?

Likely not. It’s probably not also signaling that this is a prime product.

I assume that it used to be a 40 pack but the quantity was reduced at some point (at the same or nearly the same low price!).

Still, they didn’t shrink it down to the even number.

Which means that in the future, barring some other reduction in quantity, there will be contention at Nogglestead as two strapping young men spar for the odd tacquito.

That’s What I Get For Trying To Read A Video Game Review

Over at, I saw a headline for a video game review that I thought I might to look at because it’s more interesting than the Web-based training I was taking concurrently.

The headline: Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus’ (PS4) review: Extreme prejudice

How far did I make it into the review?

When “Wolfenstein” returned in May 2014 with reboot “The New Order,” the seminal first-person shooter series felt retro. But in the time since then, it has — sadly — become relevant.

That’s because “Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus” arrives as the series’ longtime cannon fodder, Nazis, reassert their contemptible selves in American society. Emboldened months after “The New Order” by the reactionary fervor of GamerGate, they metastasized into one of the more vocal parts of the alt-right coalition that helped elect President Donald Trump last year. And after they shouted that “Jews will not replace us!” in Charlottesville this summer, Trump’s description of them as “very fine people” sanctioned their hateful rhetoric to a degree once unthinkable.

Not very far.

Behind the Scenes at MfBJN

It’s been a couple days (what, almost a week?) since I posted, but I have been working here behind the scenes at MfBJN.

As some of you might know, this blog has been around for over fourteen years. It started on Blogspot back before Blogger supported a title, not to mention categories. In 2010, I switched to WordPress and self-hosting (and moved my images from one site to another).

The result of the transition and the old timeyness of some posts meant that some images were missing from posts, many posts didn’t have titles, and none of them had categories. I’ve been working on them here and there, but I’ve started making an effort to catch up on them. So I’ve been reading individual posts from nine or ten years ago and reading comments (what? people used to comment here?), adding categories, and standardizing some tags.

So it seems like I’ve been working on the blog, but you haven’t seen any new content.

I’ll get back to it in a bit here. Thank you for your indulgence.

Book Report: Awkward Family Pet Photos by Mike Bender and Doug Chernack (2011)

Book coverI bought this book a week ago, and clearly I could not wait to get into it even though the Green Bay Packers did not actually play football last Sunday. As a matter of fact, I wanted to finish a book, any book, while I work my way through another lengthy omnibus edition and continued to toil away at a book on serious philosophy.

Clearly, this is any book, which is not to say it’s a any good book.

You know, I have bought and read books based on Internet sites before (heaven forbid, Bad Cat). Most of the Internet books I get have some textual angle, though, like The Official Darwin Awards or Jump the Shark, which fares better in book form than cat pictures with captions.

This book is a little different from that, though: It’s based on the Awkward Family Photos site, where families with odd props or out-of-date fashions post images of themselves (or get themselves posted) for the lulz. Frankly, I’ve not gotten a lot out of the site itself because laughing at pictures of other people ain’t really my bag, baby (but being amused by textual accounts of their deaths is a different thing entirely, apparently). So when the Web site operators, the nominal authors of this volume, extended the brand to pictures of people with dated fashions and pets as their props. And published at least one book of selections.

I finished the book in an hour or two of browsing, but I’ll probably forego getting others in the series or even books of this type (Internet-site photos with captions) in the future, aside from what I already own, because I don’t enjoy them and I can’t lie to myself and say I learned something from them.

But I’ll still get around to anything like this I already own. And I might revisit the proclamation if it’s coming around to football season, I’m still watching football, and I feel like I’m low on books to browse during sporting events. Because I am nothing if undisciplined.

Book Report: Socrates, Buddha, Confucius, Jesus by Karl Jaspers (1957, 1962)

Book coverThis book fits right into the reading I’ve been doing in Eastern philosophies, classical philosophy, and the Christian traditions. It is a part of a longer work (The Great Philosophers Volume I) by Existentialist philosopher Karl Jaspers, whom I tend to confuse with either Karl Poppers or Karl Barth. Theoretically, I’ll get to keeping them straight as I read them individually instead of as names in summary textbooks.

The book looks at each of the four aforementioned thinkers, giving a brief biography of each and then teasing out the thinkers’ focuses. Jaspers draws certain parallels between each–for example, that the thinkers themselves did not leave behind many writings, but instead their followers produced the texts associated with the each, which does highlight that the understanding of each is tainted by a hagiographic portrayal by their partisans.

A good, quick enough read and a quick summary view–although the Confucius section bogged me down quite as the primary text did. It can be a good starting point into these thinkers and help familiarize the reader with the various things they thought.

Deeper than this book report, anyway.

It makes me consider reading the whole The Great Philosophers set someday, but to be honest, I’m like a quarter of the way through volume 1 part 1 of Copleson’s History of Philosophy, so I won’t go out and look for it. But if I see it in a book sale….

Almost Like Big Trouble In Little China II

I watched the Eddie Murphy film The Golden Child again tonight as I had a spot of time.

It played on Showtime back in the day when we were out in the middle of nowhere and had nothing better to do than to watch the same films over and over again.

But as I watched it this time, again, I recognized several actors who overlapped between this film and Big Trouble In Little China:

Perhaps if I watch current movies, I would see crossover like this in character actors, but clearly I prefer the old timey films.

(Of course, if you’re a long-time reader, you probably remember when I noted the crossover actors between Lethal Weapon, Die Hard, and Coming to America back in the day. Holy cats, was that twelve years ago?)

I AM NOT A SERIAL KILLER, But I’m Working On My Alibi Just In Case

For the second time this year, human body parts have been found at a location named in my poetry.

First, it was Bee Tree Park. Now, it’s Okauchee Lake in Wisconsin:

A body found floating in Okauchee Lake near Road J on Oct. 26 appears to have been missing its head, part of an arm and a foot, if a photo circulating on social media is to be believed.

Police declined to comment about the photo, but Police Chief James Wallis said, “It does appear that the body may have been in the lake for an extended period of time.”

The relevant poem: “Okauchee Light”:

Across the dark Okauchee lake, a light,
the marker for the end of someone’s dock,
is strangely lit at nearly twelve o’clock
and breaks the solid black that is the night.
From here, across the chilling April lake,
through busy bar room glass I see that glow,
but life or rooms beyond I’ll never know.
One light does not a utopia make.
Quite like your smile, that single man-made star:
Up there, on stage, you flash a smile at me,
and crinkle eyes to give the gesture weight,
but like the dock-end light, you are too far;
your glow is there for someone else to see,
and now, for me at least, it is too late.

If anything happens six miles south of Tonica, Illinois, I will probably be interviewed.

Weird that “Okauchee Light” did not appear in one of my chapbooks from the middle 1990s. It will appear in my forthcoming volume Coffeehouse Memories, due out whenever I get around to it.

Book Report: The Man Who Knew Too Much by G.K. Chesterton (1922, 1986)

Book coverI picked up this book because I’ve heard of Chesterton, of course, and because I’m a big fan of the Bill Murray film The Man Who Knew Too Little. So this book is a two-fer: An intro to Chesterton and the knowledge of the source of the trope. It had been facing out of my hallway to-read bookshelves for a while, and I picked it up, hoping to get through a collection of short stories quickly. Oh, but no.

This volume collects eight connected short stories. Horne Fisher is a member of a well-connected British family whose members include several high-ranking government officials. Horne is the odd duck of the family, a dilettante that knows a lot of things and a lot of things about people. In each of the stories, someone gets murdered, and Fisher gets to the bottom of it, but the murderer goes free for the greater good of the country somewhow. Fisher has a confidante in journalist Harold Marsh who hears the crime solutions but also does not take action at his friend’s behest.

The style is a bit stilted, a bit more targeted perhaps to the aristocracy or to the intelligentsia than, say Rudyard Kipling or popular translations of Jules Verne. So I found it slower to read and easier to put down, which is why it took me a while to read the whole book even though it’s only 160 pages. I’d read something else in the interim and then a story in this book. This approach kept it from becoming too tedious.

At any rate, perhaps not the best lead into Chesterton’s work. Less approachable than Christie, and given that the criminals do not receive justice, unsatisfying. I was probably hindered by not knowing the exact period in which this was going on nor the conflicts alluded to. Even watching the entirety of Downton Abbey did not prepare me adequately. And I couldn’t hear Michelle Dockery’s voice reading it aloud (unlike Cotsold Mistress, where my imagining it helped me get through the book).

Still, I can say I’ve read some Chesterton now, which probably makes it worth the fifty cents or dollar I paid for the book. You can find fairly inexpensive editions on Amazon as noted below.

Book Report: Pets’ Letters To God translated by Mark Bricklin (1999)

Book coverI bought this book on Friday, and in that very post I pointed out the lack of recent book reporting. So I grabbed one of the thin, browseable books from that stack and flipped through it even though it’s a bye week for the Green Bay Packers.

This book collects a number of little letters as though they were written by pets to God. There must be some sort of cutesy collection of children doing this sort of thing for this collection to piggyback on, but I’ve avoided it. Probably for similar reasons that I like jokes with talking dogs but not talking children. Which was true even before I had children of my own.

At any rate, the book is about what you expect: something along the lines of I Could Pee On This and with about the same amusement factor. Which is to say some things were amusing, most were not, and I didn’t get dumber reading it.

So worth your time if you’re me. Or if this is your bag, baby.

Interesting note: The author’s bio indicates he is the former editor of Pets: Part of the Family, Prevention, and Men’s Health magazines. Actually, that’s all the bio. One would think a former editor would have weightier things to write about, but I guess not. Or this fills the time and the bank account. Maybe he’s a professional. Unlike your humble host, who mostly writes this as a gift to myself in four years, when I’ll page through these posts and find them amusing in an I Could Pee On This way. If, in four years, I can still access this site given I’m not sure how to convert it to https.

Good Book Hunting, Friday, October 27, 2017: Friends of the Clever Library Book Sale

Friday closed out the semi-annual book sale season here in the Springfield area. The trifecta of the Friends of the Christian County, the Springfield-Greene County, and Clever Library(ies) provide the basic three book sales we hit in the spring and the fall. Things like the Lebanon-Laclede County or Polk County libraries, an hour away, are the outliers.

This season, like so many, we hit all three, with the trip down to the Clever fire station closing it out.

It’s the smallest of the three sales, but I managed to find a couple things.

I got:

  • Teachers Jokes, Quotes, and Anecdotes, something put together to be a gift to a teacher but something I’ll flip through while watching a football game.
  • The Essential Kabbalah, a book on the Jewish mystical tradition.
  • Pets’ Letters to God, a Hallmark humor thing, also for flipping through during football games.
  • Assumed Identity by David Morrell. I’ve read First Blood and Rambo: First Blood Part II and have since collected a couple more by this author, but I’ve yet to read them. But by adding more to my to-read shelves, I’m adding to the statistical chances that I’ll actually pick one up.
  • A Catholic Guide to the Bible by Father Oscar Lukefahr. I’m currently working my way through the Orthodox Study Bible, which is the like the Director’s Cut of the Christian Bible, and this book should give me a traditional Catholic perspective on it. The sale had many books by Father Lukefahr, but I only bought this one.
  • Awkward Family Pet Photos, something to flip through during football games probably based on the Internet site.
  • The Life of Greece by Will Durant. I’m creeping up on a set of his Story of Civilization books. Someday.
  • Mythopoeikon, a collection of paintings, etchings, book jacket, and record sleeve covers by artist Patrick Woodroffe. I’ve never heard of him. Perhaps I’ll recognize something as I flip through the book during football games. Some three or four years from now, probably.
  • Making Bead and Wire Jewelry by Dawn Cusick. Remember those days long ago when I did stuff like this? My book buying remembers.
  • Wisconsin: A Picture Memory with text by Bill Harris. The pictures probably won’t align with my memories, but will kind of rhyme.

Not purchased: Any of the John Sandford Prey novels I might lack; the Tibetan Book of the Dead; a book on competitive running.

I also picked up a couple of DVDs: A four pack of WWII movies including Tora! Tora! Tora! because I’ve seen it memed a bit lately, but mostly because it includes Von Ryan’s Express which I bought during my eBay listing days and sometimes use as test data for this Web site I test. As part of my testing, I learned Frank Sinatra was in the film version, which I now own. I also got Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels because, well, in my recent Jason Statham film watching, I was going to quip on Facebook that I’d even watch Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels if Jason Statham was in it, and lo! He actually is. So I will have to watch it.

At any rate, with a couple of books for the children and, I presume, something for my beautiful wife (although I’m not sure where they went), we spent several sawbucks, but the Clever Library needs all the friends it can get.

So I should probably sit down and read some books here soon. It’s been a while since you’ve seen a book report, ainna?

My Red Old Yellow Car

So I was listening to an old Dan Seals album (actually, it was The Best, so it’s less old than Won’t Be Blue, an LP we won on the country radio station when I was young and spun over and over in our trailer park days), and I came across his song “My Old Yellow Car”.

Here it is presented with a slideshow of someone’s old yellow Mustang.

You know, I have a car in my history for which I feel a little affection. Strangely enough, it is not my own Mustang, my third car. A 1984 GT with eight cylinders with high mileage that I bought in a hurry after my second car was totaled when someone sneezed on it (well, rear ended it and pushed me into another car). I pumped a lot of money into that Mustang, replacing lots of parts on it and hoping to have a nearly new Mustang at the end of it, but a transmission failure that laid it up for over a month led me to buy a newer car after renting cars for weeks. I liked the Mustang, but I never got the hang of smoothly starting the car in the cold, and I only drove it for five months in the winter and spring before getting my fourth car.

No, the one I feel affection for was my first car (of course), a 1986 Nissan Pulsar with four cylinders, a manual transmission, a moon roof, and a cassette deck. I bought it with my college graduation money, when returning to House Springs, Missouri, meant I would need a car where buses would did in Milwaukee. I said I wouldn’t learn to drive a manual transmission unless I bought a sports car, but there it was. A friend of the family, a shade tree mechanic, gave me a half hour’s lesson in driving a manual transmission, and I was off (except in this case, “off” often meant “popping the clutch at a stoplight on the highway”).

I mean, the car was nothing special. It didn’t have much horsepower, although with the manual transmission, I could accelerate pretty quickly and beat other cars off the line, especially when they did not know we were racing. The car itself was red, but it was not shiny; the clear coat was mostly peeled off, which meant it was a dusky, dull red. I don’t think I have a picture of it anywhere. I hoped to get it painted, but a couple hundred dollars for a cheap paint job was out of my reach in those early English Degree job days.

It was my first taste of post-collegiate, can-go-anywhere freedom. I drove it an hour to and from work(s), an hour to and from coffeehouses, and up and back to Milwaukee and Chicago on multiple occasions. I picked up my first girlfriend in that car, and I roamed the back roads of my corner of Jefferson County, learning where I could coast in neutral for miles down the hills that pale compared to the Ozarks.

Alas, the car was not as good to me: It had a short somewhere, and it went through numerous headlights, batteries, and alternators which the shade tree mechanic mentioned above would replace without looking for the underlying cause. It left me stranded on the side of the road many times, and when it did so again in a parking lot on Manchester Road, I left it and got car number two (later to be totaled, as mentioned above). The car sat in the back yard of the house where my mother and I lived (and later the shanty of a garage the house had) for years so I could–someday–hunt down the short and repair it. Spoiler alert: I never did, and I eventually donated the car to the cancer society.

But the car is tied to that first bit of youthful freedom, so somewhere in my heart I’m still driving it, listening to a worn Lillian Axe cassette, and smelling a summer breeze full of possibilities.

A Time Traveler’s Promise

I’ve built a time machine powered by a glowing meteorite that fell into my back yard. It’s only enough power for one trip back in time, so I’m either going to kill Hitler or stop Paul Granders from releasing that annoying song “Bigger Smiles” that swept the Internet and then real life when people make that obnoxious “Bigger Smile” gesture. For Pete’s sake, every last contestant on this season of American Ninja Warrior made that stupid sign at the starting line, probably in partnership with the Bigger Smiles for Dental Hygiene Awareness Foundation.

At any rate, I’m not decided yet, but by the time you read this, I will have made our present a better place, I hope.

UPDATE: Mission accomplished! Thank goodness!

Hey, wait a minute. What’s with this heart shape made with your hands nonsense? Dammit!

Nevertheless, He Remained Married has a quiz right in my wheelhouse. Well, it’s not a quiz; it’s a slide show of the worst Saturday Night Live skits turned into movies.

The quiz portion of it is: “How many of these has Brian J. seen in the theater?”

Here’s the list; I’ve bolded the ones I saw in the theatre.

  • It’s Pat: The Movie (but I did read the book which was not the movie book).
  • Stuart [Smiley] Saves His Family (I never found Al Franken funny, even after he started doing comedy playing that character in the Senate).
  • A Night at the Roxbury (but my friend Scott and I did not dress up for it, as we discussed).
  • The Ladies Man with my beautiful wife.
  • MacGruber with my beautiful wife. On our anniversary.

I thought one of the films in the slide show would be Superstar! as one of the slides alluded to Molly Shannon’s character, but no. Which is just as well, because I have not seen that at all.

I’m pleased to have gotten a 60% on this quiz because I have a special place in my heart for bad comedies, and most of the Saturday Night Live movies fall into this class.

The Bands Were Too Close Together In The Summerfest Schedule

As I mentioned, I bought a Spyro Gyra album on Friday after having heard a Spyro Gyra song on WSIE in the last couple of weeks.

I was surprised, actually, that it was a pleasant, smooth jazz song that I heard on the radio. The album is, too. Apparently, Spyro Gyra is a jazz fusion group, and that caught me by surprise.

You see, I thought Spyro Gyra did zydeco, the accordion-heavy Cajun music style.

Why, you ask? I sure did.

The best I can figure is that Spyro Gyra played Summerfest a lot in the early days and on the same stages as a band called Buckwheat Zydeco.

So I tainted Spyro Gyra by association.

Spyro Gyra:

Buckwheat Zydeco:


And one fits my record album tastes.

To be entirely honest, I was not that familiar with Zydeco. As a matter of fact, the only song I ever heard completely (to this day, even after finding a Buckwheat Zydeco video on YouTube and hearing a couple notes of the squeeze box in it, which was enough for me to stop it) was sung by Ernie on Sesame Street:

You know, there was a time when I was excited for the new season of Sesame Street because I was eager to see new material. But that was a long time ago. Not as long as Summerfest, though.

At any rate, I am pleased with my album pick up and will look for more Spyro Gyra in the future.

The Knotted Shoelace and the History Lesson

Well, all right, not necessarily a true history lesson, but certainly a history lesson steeped in legend.

My youngest has a problem with his shoes, namely the tying thereof. As he walks around with untied shoelaces, he pulls them out of the eyelets of the shoes so that he often has both ends of the lace on the same side of the tongue, which means he cannot effectively tie them anyway. Of course, the aglets have been worn away through misuse-namely, the not-tying.

So today in church, he asked me to help with his laces. One of them had a tight knot in it that precluded relacing, as the knot was bigger than the eyelets through which he would have had to thread it. So he enlisted my help with it: “Dad, can you get this knot out?”

I helpfully agreed, but the knot was too tight for me to quickly untangle without tweezers. So I decided on a history lesson instead.

“Do you know who Alexander the Great was? A Macedonian general who conquered a lot of the ancient world. He came to the Gordian Knot, which legend said the person who solved it would conquer Asia. And you know what he did?”

“What?” he asked.

He took out his sword and cut the knot,” I said, and I took out my pocket knife and cut the lace just below the knot.

He might actually remember this story then. But I hope the test on the famous almost-Greeks of the B.C. era comes soon in his fourth grade class. Because it’s entirely possible the only thing he’ll remember is that his father carries a pocket knife.

Because he’s certainly not going to remember to tie his shoes.

(For further reading, here’s further reading on the Gordian Knot.)

Brian J. and the Invasive Species of Kansas

So for a couple of weeks, we marveled at the beautiful spider webs woven between my truck’s driver-side mirror and the ground. Some spider was working overtime to rebuild it after windy days or days where I inconveniently drove my truck somewhere, tearing the delicate hunting ground.

I mused that the spider must be living in the mirror assembly, as it was unlikely that the creature would climb up my tires, through my suspension and body, to the mirror every day. Instead, after building the spider would retreat to its lair and then emerge again to drop down its initial lines and crawl back up to spin the web.

On my recent trip to Kansas, this was confirmed as the spider started rebuilding its web in the parking lot of the restaurant where I’d had dinner.

I took a few snapshots, climbed in, and drove off, presumably with the spider still dangling from its line. Along the road to my hotel, it blew off somewhere into the wilds of Leavenworth. Last seen headed southwest, towards Chez Venom.

As I drove along, I wondered/hoped two things:

  1. The spider did actually blow off outside my vehicle and did not blow into the truck. Otherwise, every time I clamber into the vehicle in the coming months, I will sit in a spider web beneath a grudge-holding spider.
  2. That the spider’s species habitat already included Kansas. Otherwise, I might have introduced an invasive species into the habitat, which could bring some sort of ecological apocalypse on the Sunflower State. Worse, I might be subject to some sort of government sanction under some obscure administrative rule. A certain kind of person often thinks about government regulations that one can inadvertently break and ruin one’s life with. I’m special.

The restaurant was an Applebee’s (since it shares a parking lot with the used book store. Do you think the spider say that and thought, “Yayus! Bees that taste like apples!”?