Notes From The Cactus Patch

Tall Tales and Ripping Yarns from The Great State Of Texas

Archive for the month “June, 2021”

“More Things That Make You Ask, WTH?”


“Happy Summer Solstice.” Really? It’s called summer-time you little wokie twerps. This is not Stonehenge with a bunch of naked Druids dancing around a pile of rocks. It’s Texas, and it’s damn hot from April until October. Our seasons in Texas go like this; spring for a few days, then summer for 5 or 6 months, then winter for a few weeks, then summer again. Fall is a few days, maybe.

Flash! Chicago, the murder capitol of the US. Obama’s home town, yet he wont live there. Over the weekend, more than 50 shootings and multiple deaths. So much for their Juneteenth celebration. No coverage of this on NBC or ABC. Guess Lester Holt doesn’t read the newspaper.

New Zealand is sending a trans girl to the Olympics. She lifted weights for years as a guy, but couldn’t win, so now he is a she and is expected to be the gold medal winner in women’s weight lifting. The other girl competitors should organize a whoop-ass party for this dude.

Macy Gray, that has-been singer from decades ago wants America to have a new flag. It appears the current flag triggers her emotions. How about Macy moves to a country with a flag that meets her approval.

“Coming Soon To Your Hometown!” Kamala La-La-Harris will be our first black woman president, although she is not black, and Nancy “Grey Goose” Pelosi will be vice president. Sippy Cup Joe will be banished to the basement or his beach house. Dr. Jill will have to go back to teaching. Who was it that said things can’t get any worse?

“Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow”


Us Texans can be braggarts, pompous asses, and supercilious zealots about our state, history, and traditions. To us, “everything is bigger” in Texas. I won’t deny this because it happens to be true.

We are divinely blessed with the big sky country, enormous cattle ranches larger than most states, the vast rolling prairies, Big Tex and the State Fair, The Fort Worth Fat Stock Show, the Big Bend National Park, big-assed rodeos, colossal oil and gas fields, big cattle with massive horns, tall longneck beers, fat fluffy biscuits, and my favorite, “big hair.” I happen to have first-hand knowledge of the big hair phenomenon. It happened in our household.

In 1956, an artistically inclined Fort Worth beautician that happened to be my uncle figured out he could take a woman’s healthy, shining long hair and transform it into a towering monument of femininity. Teasing, ratting, poking, backcombing, and then mold the mass into a two-foot mountain of tortured follicles. To keep the sculpture in place required a minimum of one or more 16-ounce cans of flammable cancer-causing lacquer-based hair spray that was known to explode when in the vicinity of an open flame. Who knew a hair-do could be so dangerous.

It was a winning combo for the beauty shops. Women had to visit their beauticians to achieve their “big hair” style, and the shop sold the spray to hold the sculpture in place. It was a gold mine, and within six months, every beautician in Fort Worth had doubled their business and was driving a Frank Kent Cadillac. The good times were rolling in, and Texas women would never look the same.

My hair-fixin uncle entered a hairstyle show in Dallas and needed a model. My mother, ever the good sister, volunteered for the job, and off the two went. But, of course, Dallas was the forbidden zone for us, Fort Worth-ians, so it was a shock to the family when my mother consented to go.

As children, we must repeat an oath, pledging to never, under any circumstance, visit Dallas, except for funerals and weddings, and then don’t spend your money there; keep it in Cowtown. Amon Carter watched over his sheep, and the Leonard Brothers needed our support.

As a cold Saturday in late December, turned to nighttime, and then late evening. My father grew increasingly worried about his wife’s whereabouts.
“How long does it take to fix some damn hair?” He said for the hundredth time. The weatherman on Channel 5 had forcasted a big sleet storm that might hit at any time.

Dinner was a sack of White Castle burgers. My sister went to bed early, and I, in support of my father, sat up watching “The Mummy” on Nightmare Theater. My father was outside in the cold, pacing on the front porch, chain-smoking unfiltered Lucky Strikes and cursing Dallas.

Around 10 PM, my father joined me in front of the television as the mummy was killing his final victim with a chokehold; the front door opened, and there stood my mother with a furry gargoyle perched on her head.

The lighting from our Christmas tree cast an eerie glow on her form. Tiny glass ornaments in her hair reflected the red and blue lights, making her an angelic Christmas version of “The Bride of Frankenstien.”

She staggard to the sofa plopped down, and fell over sideways. My father gently lifted her to a sitting position and placed a cushion behind her back. I noticed a small pile of broken hair where her head had landed. She began to weep. There was no consoling her; the more we tried, the louder she wailed.

Uncle said that a jealous competitor had switched his hair spray with a can of spray glue, so the hair-do would be permanent. The good news is they won the hair show, and they got a big trophy and a check.

The following day, mom left the house early. When she returned, her hair was as short as a man’s.

I was sad to see the hair-do go. I thought the tiny ornaments in her hair looked pretty cool. After all, it was Christmas time.

“Who Knew The Scarecrow Was So Smart”


The Democrats are upset that the new Prime Minister of Israel is a Jew. What the hell? of course he’s a Jew. A.O.C., that little Tesla driving-two apartment owning, grandmother ignoring cutie from New York says that the Israelis should have elected a Palestinian.

Some journalist stuck a mic in her face and this is what comes out, “Well, like, you know, they like, live just across the street, so like, it would be good for neighborhood relations,” she said in her 10 year-old valley girl voice. This is the wisdom that comes from a moron that was elected because of her whimsical social media videos. A mediocre bartender with a credit score of 400 goes to congress; definitely not “Mr. Smith Goes To Washington.” I read that Pelosi fixed her credit problem and co-signed for the Tesla.

“Old Joe” refuses to do a joint presser with Putin? Maybe for good reasons; the teleprompter might be in Russian, they wouldn’t let Dr. Jill, his mouth piece and coach, stand next to him, Putin might bring up the dirty money he and Hunter got from Russia and Ukraine, or Putin might say, ” Joe, you know Trump really won.” Pretty sure Obama called the shot this one.

“N” word Hunter keeps getting all the breaks. Using that foul word, for most Americans, signals the end of your career, your job or worse, your life. Hunter said it, he texted it, the viral community got it out there, Dorsey and Zucker censored it, and the main stream media ignores it. Hunter tweeted an apology of sorts to his followers,” sorry dudes, I must have smoked some bad crack.” So, is there good crack?

Kamala La-La Harris still can’t find her way to the Mexico-US boarder. She figures if she doesn’t go there, the problem doesn’t exist. It’s not that difficult. Google Maps will show her the way. Go to Texas and then head south on I 35.; there will be a motorcade of 500 pickup trucks flying Trump flags to safely escort her to the boarder.

Lester Holt, when interviewing her for his NBC newscast, reminded her VP-ness more than once, that she has never been to the boarder, even after her insistence that she had visited the place multiple times. She mumbled a bit and laughed it off. I guess her cackling witch laugh makes everything alright. Lester zinged her a good one.

The G-7; where all the leaders that ruined the economy in their own countries, get together to ruin the world’s economy so they wont look so bad.

“Ben and Jerry’s” is introducing a new ice cream flavor on July 3rd, just in time for our all American July 4th celebrations. “Aw Come On Man” double-double-Joe’s-in-trouble triple chocolate chunk, in honor of our favorite presidential ice cream man. Joe said he will send a few truckloads to the illegal kiddo’s in cages down there on the Texas boarder. Ice cream makes everything better, right?

The current leadership in Washington, both sides of the street, reminds me of the movie, “The Wizard of Oz.” Dorothy and Toto are headed to Oz, and she stumbles across the Scarecrow.

Dorothy: “How can you talk if you haven’t got a brain?” The Scarecrow: “I don’t know, but some people without brains do an awful lot of talking, don’t they?”

“Baseball At The Zoo”


In 1956, Fort Worth had one of the best zoo’s in the country. Located in Forest Park along the banks of the Trinity River, it was a world away from hot summertime Texas.

My neighborhood buddies, Georgie and Skipper and I would ride our “made in the U.S.A.”all steel, 60 pound,Western Flyer bicycles to the park every week either to play pick-up baseball on the city diamonds, swim in the city pool, or hang out at the zoo, which was our favorite destination. Being kids, we didn’t have a dime to our names, so we discovered a secret hidey hole near the Ape House, and skittered in.

Meandering trails of crushed rock surrounded by lush foliage transported us to the jungles of Africa. The only thing missing was Tarzan and Jane, yelling and swinging through the trees. We were always on the watch, just in case they made an appearance.

The Ape House was the main attraction for children. A building with a large outside enclosure featuring towering stone cliffs, large climbing trees, and a sparkling lagoon gave the place a jungle vibe. The Gorilla’s, and assorted noisy Monkey’s preferred the outside enclosure, so they were always lounging around the lagoon, picking their butts, fighting, or eating banana’s and other tasty simian treats. One of the Gorilla’s had a nasty habit that earned him the nick-name, “Whitey Ford,” that famous pitcher for the Yankee’s. Whitey the Gorilla Ford, threw monkey poop.

This particular summer day, after a morning game of baseball, the three of us visited the zoo. There was a group of children, about our age standing at the outside Ape enclosure. Three mom’s chaperoned the group of about twenty.

Kids, being the little twerps they are, were mocking the Gorilla’s, making faces, yelling insults and such, being brats. A few of the Gorilla’s were irritated by their behavior, and paced around the lagoon giving the group the stink eye. Gorilla’s have feelings too, and they were pissed. “Whitey Ford” sat on a boulder with his back to the tormentors. He was busy forming a perfect major league proportioned poop ball. The only thing missing was the stitching and the stamp.

One kid in the crowd ramped up the insults and threw a snow cone at the Gorilla’s. That did it.

“Whitey Ford” stood up, his back to the crowd, looked over his left shoulder, then at the other Gorilla’s, and gave them a nod, as if to say, “watch this.” The kid was still going at it, and one of the mom chaperones was standing behind him, doing her best to quiet him down.

“Whitey Ford” started his wind-up, turned on his right leg, lifted his left leg high, and released a perfect ninety-mile-per-hour curve ball at the mouthy boy. His aim was a little high, and he missed the kid, but hit the mom chaperone square in the forehead. She staggered backward ten feet, flipped over a wooden fence rail and did a back flip into the duck pond.

It was a beautiful pitch. We could see the subtle curve and the rise of the poop ball a split second before it hit it’s target. Holy crap, this Gorilla could pitch for the majors. We clapped and yelled our approval, giving a thumbs up to Whitey. He couldn’t return the gesture because Gorilla’s don’t have thumbs, so he gave us a nod and a smile.

“Live Your Life Like It’s Your Last Summer”


A half dozen years ago, I was sitting on the patio of my golf club having a beer with one of the H.O.A board members of the community I lived in. DeCordova Bend Estates is a hot-shit golf community in Granbury Texas, and if you can afford it, it was the happening place to be. At that time, my wife and I could afford it. We were hot-stuff. We considered ourselves “Donna Summer” hot stuff golf cart driving disco baby.

Dave, the nice fellow I was visiting with shared a tid-bit of knowledge with me. It wasn’t solicited, but he just threw it out there, kind of like a lure; something to discuss.

He said that he and his wife looked at their older years as “how many summers do we have left.” It was an odd statement and I didn’t understand it, so I begged further explanation. He expounded a bit. Alcohol has that effect; it tends to make normal folks speak like Will Rogers.

After a few beers, he shared this, “As we grow older, we approach the future with how many good days we have left before the medical issues arise, and the bills they produce, and the infirmity that comes with those issues, and then the hospitalizations and surgeries, and the nursing homes, and then the inevitable, which is death. Summers are our good place, our good times to remember with our families and our spouses. No one remembers winters, except for Christmas, we remember and cherish our summer times. It starts with our first childhood summer that we can remember.” Heavy stuff.

When he laid it out in those terms, it made perfect sense; “how many summers do we have left?” Why had I not had the fore-site to approach life in those terms?

I will turn 72 in September, and my wife is 69 as of last May. The two of us are on the downhill slide of life as we know it. Unless Dr. Fauci invents an age reversal shot, we are big-time screwed.

What summer are the two of us in? I have no idea. The medical issues started in 2019 with my cancer. Now two years later, I deal with the effects of massive radiation that has fried my internal organs. My wife needs major back surgery, as do I, and our little dog Winnie is 13 years old and having a bad time. What the hell? Is this it? Life sucks and then you die? So the television commercials for Fidelity investments are complete fantasy laden bullshit? Yes they are.

When my mother was struggling with terminal emphysema, and my father was dying from brain cancer, she looked at me and said,”what happened to the golden years?” I didn’t know what to say. At some point, the golden years had passed them by without a nod. Both of them, sick and dying, where was the happiness? No traveling, no walks on the beach, no nothing, except waiting for a miserable death. My sister and I watched this unfold, helpless to change the outcome.

I think Mo and I may have four or five summers left, but who knows. We will live each of them as if it is our last summer on this earth. Fire up the grill, throw on the burgers and pop me a cold beer; It’s summer time.

“I Was A 3-D Child”


I saw my first 3-D movie in 1955. My cousin Jock and I rode our balloon tire bicycles to the 7th Street Theater in Fort Worth. A ticket was $.25 cents and a coke and popcorn was another $.10 cents, we were set. The cheesy cardboard 3-D glasses were free.

After two cartoons, a message on the screen said “put on your 3-D glasses now!” Man, we were ready. The music was scary, the credits and opening scenes were even scarier. Vincent Price looked about as evil as the devil, and the wax figures looked real, ready to jump through the screen. Neither of us would admit it, but we were scared shitless.

Things started flying around the screen, then into the audience and over our heads. Floating orbs, spears and flying ghost. Old Vincent threw a fiery orb at the front row, and kids ran down the isle screaming, hitting the seats and falling, blind, still wearing their 3-D glasses. It was pandemonium. The manager stopped the film and brought up the house lights. That was it.

We rode our bicycles home still wearing our 3-D glasses and looking oh so cool.

“Everybody Gets A Month!”


February is African American history month, March is women’s history and Irish American heritage month, May is Asian Pacific and Jewish American heritage month, June is now Pride month (too many identifiers to call it Gay and Lesbian month any longer), September is Hispanic-Latino heritage month, October is Italian American heritage month, and lastly November is American Indian heritage month. But to list some is to exclude many. Where are the months to celebrate Caribbean, German, Scandinavian, French-Creole, or people from India? When is enough, enough?

So now friends and neighbors, June will be known as “Pride Month.” What about Juneteenth? June has always been the month for celebrating the end of slavery. Is that canceled now? I wouldn’t be surprised. Our black Americans are not going to be happy about this one. Why doe’s our government, (mostly our Democrat government) think a group of folks should get a month celebrating their sexual preference? I don’t give a tinkers-damn about who humps who, but when you try and cram this “Wokie-sock cap wearing-Birkenstock feet-hipster-skinny jean-I Phone talking-snow flake ” crap down my throat, then I get irritated. Gays can be Gays and boys can be girls and vice-versa, no problem, and most American’s feel that way. It’s not the 1950s anymore. Hell, even 40 years ago, Kermit The Frog sang about Rainbow Connections.

Old Sippy-Cup Joe, gave orders for all American Embassy’s and government buildings to fly the rainbow flag for “Pride Month.” Doe’s this include our embassy’s in Muslim countries? Muslim law and Muslim folks don’t have much love for gay and trans peoples. I’m still waiting for the news report on this one.

We can assume that this will be made law by “Old I’ll Sign Anything” Joe. Doe’s he realize the cost to change all the calender’s in this country? Just imagine; January, February, March, April, May, Pride Month, July etc. Doesn’t flow too well. For a point of argument, one could say, “well, this is harmless, let’s give those poor down-trodden folks their own month,” they deserve it. What have they done to deserve their own calendar month? The few gay folks I know, have great professional career’s and make a load of change and are definitely not down trodden.

Everyone needs their own month, so let’s make July “Grumpy-Ass Old Men” month. Us senior have to put up with this new world order, love-love Panda Rainbow crap, so give us our Du. We’ve earned it.

Dr. Gustav Scaramouch, head of Social Behavior’s Department at the Freddie Mercury Medical Institute in Queens, New York says, ” this is a slippery slope. Once we give the LGBQRSTUVWXYZ movement their own month, then we will be obliged to give other groups their own month. Our historical calendar will be decimated. Imagine starting with the first month of the year, January, will be “Black Lives Matter Month”, then February will be “Antifa” Month, then March will be “White Supremacy Month”, then April will be “Illegal Immigrants Month,”there will be no end. Then, they will come for our American Holidays. I called President Biden about this, but he was taking his fourth nap of the day and he couldn’t talk.”

How’s about we just leave things alone. It’s been working for over 200 years because our founding fathers were much smarter than us.

“Where’s The Dress?”


I met up with my old pal Mooch for lunch at the local Whataburger a few days ago; corner booth by the west window, same as always for at least ten years now. Giblet, his foul tempered chihuahua was nestled into his chest mount baby sling. A large colorful patch on the sling read; “Service and Emotional Support Animal.” I never knew that? What in the world could Giblet do except bite your fingers trying to steal french fries and crap in the carrier.

We ordered our burgers, said our howdy’s and made small talk until the meal arrived. Mooch was quiet except for smacking his double meat burger. I knew he was troubled about something.

About half-way through the meal, Mooch blurted out, “my grandson is a sissy-boy.”

I know his grandson Willie quite well, so this surprised the hell out of me. The kid is 6 ft. 240 pounds of Texas football playing whoop-ass. All district line-backer all 4 years at Granbury High School and the fastest man on the track team. Mooch must be on drugs or suffering from early onset “Old-timers.”

I said, ” come on Mooch, the kid is all testosterone and muscle and will be playing football for some Big 10 university next year.”

“Nope” he says. “He’s a girly-man, just like that Boy George dude back in the 80s. My son Harry called me yesterday with the news. Willie is transitioning into a girl named Sadie Sue. Harry said he’s wearing a blonde wig, dresses, high-heel shoes, makeup and big fake titties. He still has his Johnson, so that’s a good thing, but he said he is a girl now. I should have noticed something was amiss when he sent the AR 15 rifle I bought him for Christmas back to me with a note that said, “no thanks, guns or for mean boys.” His Grandma is so freaked out, she took a handful of Valium and took to her bed.”

I know nothing of this subject, but offered Mooch a coddled word, “I know this is a shock, but is there anything positive that can come of this. You think it’s just a fad or a phase?”

Mooch smiled and said, “Well there is one good thing, he got a full-ride scholarship to the University of Oregon, so at least he will get a good education.”

“Well that’s good news indeed. I’m sure he will be a stellar line-backer for the football team,” I say.

Mooch wiped a tear from his watery old eye and said, “not football buddy, he’s on the girls track team.” And with that, Giblet bit Mooch’s hand trying to get the last french-fry.

“Rioters,Racist and Wokies Oh My!”


Those pesky “Black Lives Matter” kids are at it again. Minneapolis MN must hold a special attraction for these little thugs because they keep returning to loot and burn major box stores. Target, CVS, Walgreens, Nike shoe stores etc. I can see Target and Nike getting looted because they carry expensive shoes, clothes and electronics. CVS and Walgreens, well I guess they need lighter fluid (for fire-bombs), narcotics (for stamina and strength), nose spray, band aids, and perhaps a bottle of cheap wine for a celebratory drink after the mayhem.

It appears from local news accounts, all this looting and torching was caused by a mistake; the police forgot to call King Le-Bron James before they shot and armed man trying to shoot them. It’s a safe bet Le-Bron would have asked the cops to put the guy on the line so he could give him some brotherly advice, or maybe promise some free game tickets. Le-Bron is extremely “woke” and has that calming effect on criminals.

Just to let the good “Wokie” citizens of Minneapolis know; if you’re a white person, and live in the burbs or a high-fa-lute-n part of town, you are all racist by default, even though you live in one of the most liberal cities in America. That includes Minnesota’s favorite Norwegian, Garrison Keillor, the past, and “oh so Woke” host of NPR’s “Prairie Home Companion” who got the boot for his loose hands around his female employee’s. Shame, I always liked Lake Wobegon, even though it wasn’t real.

“Baby Woodstock”


Velveteen and Zig-Zag, photo courtesy of Ken Kesey

Before the Covid hit last year, my cousin Velveteen and her husband Zig-Zag were planning a small reincarnation of the famous Woodstock festival but delayed the event for safety reasons. They met there in 1969 and have been together since that night they spent clutching each other in the “Freak-Out tent” both suffering from a bad reaction to the brown acid that the announcer warned everyone about.

Now in their late 70s, the couple resides in Red River, New Mexico, in a commune called the “Wavy Gravy Senior Retreat.” Zig-Zag is the entertainment director, and Velveteen is the main spiritual advisor and palm reader.

I received a letter from them a few days ago, and by golly, the “Baby Woodstock” is on for this coming July and will be held in the scenic mountains of New Mexico. They finished the school bus conversion a few weeks ago, and it’s a beautiful reproduction of Ken Kesey’s Merry Prankster school bus.

Photo by Wavy Gravy

The entertainment for the festival is going to be a bit dicey since many of the original performers are dead, in a nursing home, not playing anymore or too out of it. Zig-Zag, bless his old pot-smoking heart, did the best he could on such short notice.

The list is: Sha-Na, the other Na has passed on, Joe Cockers red white and blue cowboy boots, Carlos Santana’s guitar and stand, David Crosby, since no one likes his grumpy ass anymore, Arlo Guthrie’s ex-wife Alice, A full-size cardboard cut-out of John Sebastian accompanied by a recording of him saying “Wow” for twenty minutes, Melanie riding her personal scooter made from roller skates, Jimi Hendrix’s rapping cousin, little Purple Haze, Country Joe McDonald’s grandson, City Boy Dave, Joni Mitchell says she might make this one, Grace Slicks pet dog Roach, and of course Wavy Gravy and the Hog Farm will furnish all the food and drinks. Wavy say’s this time they will be serving breakfast in bed, delivered to your tent by a drone.

We plan on attending. Tickets are available through AARP, Walmart, and Medicare Part B. See you there.

Peace Out Brother

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