Daily Archives: June 10, 2012

The Smoke We Called Living

A few days ago Wayne, the guy everyone’s looking at in this pic sent it to me.  Brought back memories of a time when I had a dozen suits in the closet and more ties than would fit on a rack across the closet door.  That photo must be from 1975, 1976.  Leading edge watch I was wearing must have cost a bundle.

I’m the one with the chin.  The meataxe is the one without one.  Ken was his name.  If my memory serves me rightly he died sometime in the late 1980s, early ’90s and left a lot more people glad he did than wished he didn’t.  By that time he’d been far enough out of my life long enough so’s I didn’t give much of a damn one way or another.  Ken never amounted to much this lifetime, but he narrowly missed a few good bets, geography and time being a key factor.  He’d have fit right in a number of places when goose-stepping was more popular as a pastime.

Old Wayne’s stuck with that career all these decades, fought his way up the ladder to success, winding down now.  When we re-established contact a few months ago I’d thought for a long time he was probably dead, too.  But he’s a couple of months away from hanging up his gun, instead.  Retiring.  Cleaning out his desk, I reckons.

I’m hoping before I head off into the sunset, but after he finishes getting all that behind him, we’ll get out on a river bank somewhere and watch the bobbers on a trotline, scramble up some catfish and eggs for breakfast.   Him winding down, me just listening and watching.

For a human being, getting success behind ain’t always easy.  Tough drug  to kick most times, but a man has to do it.

Old Jules

Old Sol: “John B Stetson’s Gone Solar”

Me:  This overcast is protecting you this morning.  I can’t tell what you’re doing up there.  You doing your stretches, getting a move on?

Old Sol:  I tell you, I welcome those mornings when I’m blessed with a little something between me and you guys.  There’s a guy named John B. Stetson been prying, taking pictures, nosing into my affairs something awful.

Me:  Yeah, I saw something about him:


“In Falmouth, Maine, amateur astronomer John Stetson photographed the ongoing activity around sunspot AR1499.  “These solar active regions are producing M-class and C-class flares that are easy to see through my H-alpha telescope,” says Stetson.

“NOAA forecasters estimate a 25% chance of more M-class flare today, although this is probably an underestimate considering the rapid pace of development of magnetic fields near AR1499. Stay tuned.”

Old John Stetson’s probably just trying to drum up hat bidness.  Nothing directed at you, personally.  I can’t think what my nose would look like if it weren’t for John Stetson and his hats.  That horizon’s forming itself up fairly well.  I assume you’re ready to get some work done?

Old Sol:  Could you cut me some slack here?  Of course I am.  When haven’t I?  But I’ll tell you for a fact I’m getting sick of all this sophisticated surveillance equipment you’re getting down there.  It ain’t all just to sell hats, either.  Reporters forever poking around, digging up secrets.  But at least I got that chicken around behind me now.

Me:  Yeah, I’m relieved about that, too.  So are the chickens.  They saw it as a sign, began to get all worked up about it.  Nobody around here besides me has any fondness for Buff Crested Polish roosters.

Old Sol:  You guys are a caution.  Anyway, yeah, I’m right up here where I’m supposed to be.  Go do something else.

Old Jules