Reel It In, Buddy!

A remnant of the winter storm clings to the upper reaches of Sandia this morning. Otherwise, we’re clear and COLD!

Many years ago, David and I visited two friends who were doing a bald eagle watch in northern Arizona. This is the kind of job wildlife biologists get: camp out all summer and keep an eye on the nest and the eaglets. Sure, there are many fun things about this job, but it also gets monotonous and the heat was unending, even at night. Desert camping usually guarantees at least cool nights, but in this place, the rock absorbed all the heat and radiated it back all night long.

So, they would make the hour-long hike to the bottom of the canyon, to swim in the little stream there. Never mind that the climb back up took longer and you arrived hot and sweaty – it was still totally worth it. We enthusiastically agreed to this proposition and made the jaunt with them.

Now, the bottom of this canyon was full of desert scrub, thorny bushes and cacti. You had to be really careful navigating it. Plus, free-range cattle had to be avoided. They told us this story about how, on one hike, they saw a bull and cow going at it. The bull was humping away until our friends startled them. The bull and cow broke apart and took off running.

Only, the bull still had his bullish manly parts extended, swinging in the breeze, as it were.

The male half of our biologist couple, appalled as the bull crashed through the thorny brush and cacti with his long pink delicate bits exposed, yelled out “Reel it in, buddy! Reel it in!”

We laugh about this story still.

And I thought of it the other day, when a friend and I had a conversation about people oversharing on the internet. There’s lots of discussion on this topic – how much is too much, etc. It’s good to connect with people in a personal way, but at some point, if you’re walking around with your entrails hanging out, people just wince and look away.

Reel it in, buddy. Reel it in.

The One, True Garden Stake

So, here’s how it came about.

A few weeks back, I was cleaning up the garden for winter (which turns out to be a good thing because we’re in full-blown blizzard conditions right now) and I managed to gouge my hand on a garden stake. Right in the center of my palm. It wasn’t a bad scrape, but it looked unsettlingly like a stigmata.

Naturally, being a Twitter junkie, I tweeted about my new stigmata (stigmatum?) and dubbed myself #HolyJeffe.

I have it on good authority that several people took up the epithet and used it in good health.

Now, a number of people asked if they should worship me, which is just wrong, wrong, wrong. No, I said, you should worship that which gave me the stigmatum (“stigmata” sounds better), from whom all holiness flows. The garden stake.

Being in The Netherlands, Sullivan McPig, somewhat anxiously inquired if any garden stake would do. I had to deliver the bad news that, while all garden stakes are images of the One, True Garden Stake and one should always express courtesy and reverence towards them, that only the One, True Garden Stake would do for offerings.

Being the generous soul that I am, I agreed to be a conduit for all such offerings.

Holy Jeffe cares about you.

So, Sullivan, and his cohort, Voodoo Bride, who does book reviews here, got their owner to send tribute to the One, True Garden Stake.

It was acceptable.

Delicious, too.

Good Sinterklaasavond to Sullivan, Voodoo Bride and Carien and her partner today!

Fire of Life

I’m over at Word Whores today, ruminating on fire.

And, just in case that sounds ho-hum and you don’t click over – I know, I know, how could I contemplate such a thing? – here’s a bit of exciting news:

Big shout-out to sister Word-Whore Marcella Burnard for her nomination from the RT Book Reviews team in Futuristic Romance for her really wonderful novel ENEMY GAMES. If you haven’t read it, you really should. It’s really excellent hard-core sci-fi, chock full of battles with fascinating alien life forms.