Thursday, September 28, 2006


I hired a guy to trim my trees. Yeah, I'm a wimp. Something about climbing up a 25-foot ladder and sawing branches doesn't appeal to me anymore. Burned out, I guess.

Anyway, my tree trimming guy has a very cool tool: a chainsaw on the end of a pole!

Really, how cool is that?

The more I watch him whack off limbs and branches the more I think, "I gotta get me one of those!"

Dear Santa,

I've been good all year and what I really want is a chainsaw on the end of a long pole.

Sincerely yours,

p.s. I promise not to chase cats with it, not that the thought ever occurred to me.

Yeah, with a chainsaw on the end of a long pole I'd get some respect. Yes, I would.

Especially from cats.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Danny Boy

"Hello, this is Bill."


"Hey, yourself!"

"Whatcha doin'?"

"Just chillin'. TGIF. Got some steaks to grill. Usual Friday stuff."

"Sounds good, sounds good. I'm about to get on the road."

"Yeah, I heard the traffic is all messed up. Good luck."

"I hear you, buddy, I hear you. Hey, hold those steaks, OK, I'll be at least an hour."

"Uh, yeah, I guess." *pause* "You're coming here for dinner?"

"Uh." *pause* *pause* "Well, that was the plan. I thought."

"Well, you know, I'm always the last one who hears about this stuff, but, no prob, I'll, uh, make a bigger salad or something."

*pause* *pause* *car noises*

"Uh, is this Dan?"

"No, this is Bill."

"Oh, sorry, Danny Boy, wrong number."


Thursday, September 14, 2006

Canadian Bacon

A quick word about food in Canada:


We ate at hotels, restaurants, cafes, lodges, pubs and bars and everything was well above average, even by Houston standards and that's saying a mouthful.

More later.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

In the Wilderness

"I thought you said this hotel had wireless Internet? I'm not picking up a signal."

"Hang on, let me get the travel guide. Here, what's this say?"

"Cabins, restaurant, yak, yak, yak, in a wilderness setting."

"Wilderness? Not wireless?"

"It'll probably get dark here, too."

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Attention Hotels!

Hotels of the World please heed!

Refrain from providing emerald-colored shampoo to guests:


Shampoo - Amber
Mouthwash - Emerald

Thank you for your attention.

Sunday, September 03, 2006


Calgary! Clear, blue skies, warm and sunny. The locals tell us it's like this year round.

So, what kind of food would you expect in cattle country? Steaks? Ribs? Giant roasts? Yes, it's all here. But, for something a little different in downtown Calgary there's the Metropolitan Grill. Californian meets Mediterranean in Canada. An unexpected delight awaiting us for a late lunch.

Sidewalk tables afforded us a view of the endless parade of tourists, students and locals of all types. There was a lady carrying about 50 red and black balloons, young men on skateboards, and a pirate. What would Calgary be without a pirate, I say.

We started our lunch, appropriately, with a cheese and mushroom fondue served with garlic toast slices, accompanied by a local beer, Big Rock Honey Brown lager.

Then, going for something on the light side we opted for a "cioppino" of Prince Edward Island mussels, salmon, mahi mahi and shrimp in a lobster sauce orzo. The dish was garnished with cilantro and a sprinkling of dill.

We tossed into this mix a chicken salad because we couldn't resist the description: chicken and lots of other good stuff. And justified our decision by calling our meal an "early dinner."

Perfect weather, perfect food. An auspicious start to our discovery of Canada.