Wednesday, June 30, 2010


If you have a deep passion for killing ants and flies, do I have the perfect vacation spot for you---Cross Timbers State Park, aka: Toronto Lake. When great neph Bo was here last week, he specially requested a few days of camping. I refused to pitch a tent in the hellish weather we’d been having, I’m too damned old for that, so I compromised and rented us a cabin. Big Bore and I had an enjoyable couple of days in one of these little log numbers a few years back, but that was in February when the insects weren’t lurking about--ready to annoy every breathing moment of the camping experience.

Oh, what a difference June makes. This time, the flies made their presence immediately, buzzing about on the cabin porch like the Welcome Wagon. Every time we opened the front door, about a zillion of them poured inside to make themselves comfortably at home. Eating outdoors was nearly impossible. We eventually got out the fly swatters and just beat them to a bloody fly pulp. Bo really got into his role as Chief of the SWAT Team. Kah-WAP!!!! Kah-WAP!!!! “You go, Bo!! You da man!!”

The ants were another story. They were crawling about the kitchen, ready to attack whatever was thrown into the waste basket within seconds. Bo called the park office asking for mercy, and a nice worker guy came to our rescue. He didn’t totally succeed in eradicating our ant cabin mates, but he did reduce their population to livable proportions.

Now, don’t get me wrong. We had a fine time hiking and biking and skipping rocks and building a campfire and roasting wienies and playing a raging card game of War, but the next time Bo and I go camping out, we’re staying at home!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


When my great neph Bo was here last week, I took him to Cabaret Old Town in the City to see the wacky live presentation of Kyle and Monte, The Musical, The Men, The Myth, The Medleys. I first saw Kyle and Monte in action at Cabaret about 13 years ago when they were two of the beauty queen wannabes in Pageant. They were hilarious, especially Monte and his talent performance as a roller skating accordion player. Anyway, I was hooked on the guys and have seen them on stage many times. This was Bo's first K and M experience. He's 17 now. He can deal with it.

During the course of last Friday night’s musical extravaganza, Kyle and Monte would take a time-out for some audience participation called, “What’s In Your Purse?” The guys would ask for a particular item and the first person who came to the stage with said item would win a prize. The first item they requested was, “A mint!!!” And, guess who had several rolls of mints in her purse? The Flaming Bore, of course.

I raised my peppermint Breathsavers into the air, and Kyle and Monte waved me down to the stage. Bo was also encouraging me to get there before anyone else. So, I took off---only to forget that the booth where we were sitting was on a platform. Have you ever walked straight on, not anticipating a step down? Sure you have. The landing is clumsy. And mine was so clumsy that I basically propelled myself into the back of a woman sitting nearby.

Thank god I somehow managed to stay upright and got to the stage on time to be declared the winner….of a one-of-a-kind Kyle and Monte key ring!!! Hooray!! It is so totally cool. Wait till the Library Lady gets her eyeballs on this, I thought. She is a Kyle and Monte fan, too. Monte once dripped sweat on her while singing as Dr. Frank-N-Furter in The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and she was in heaven. She would be so totally jealous to see my big prize that I almost broke a leg to win.

Well, the rest of the evening was klutz-free. Bo loved the show and the cheesecake and the strawberry coladas and was so sorry I didn’t win the grand prize of the evening, which was sort of like a sandwiched lap dance from Kyle and Monte, fully dressed in cowboy regalia, complete with black and white cowskin chaps.

The show has been held over through July17th, so there’s still time for you to see Kyle and Monte sing and dance and run around in a frenzy. Be sure to take along some mints and watch your step when you dash to the stage.

Monday, June 28, 2010


Every summer when my great neph Bo comes for a visit, we go to the city to see the movie of his choice. His absolute worst pick of the past has been Lava Boy and Shark Girl…or was it Shark Boy and Lava Girl? I’m not sure which, but it was a bomb of nuclear proportions. His best selection was last summer’s stupendously hilarious The Hangover. Last week during his visit with dear old great auntie, he picked the critically acclaimed Toy Story 3.

Now, I’ve never seen the first two Toy Story movies, but I’ve read enough Entertainment Weekly magazines to know there’s a beloved cowboy doll--Tex, or Rex, or Woody, or whatever, and a dashing toy astronaut, Buzz, so I was prepared to enjoy a cute little comedy. But, YIKES!!! Toy Story 3 is downright scary!

The toys end up at the Day Care Center from Hell!!! By day, they get abused by little brats and then at night they are tortured by the other toys, EVIL toys that act sort of friendly at first but then they turn on the newcomers. They imprison them!! Mr. Potato Head, parts of his starchy face removed, is locked in a cat litter pan!! Ken ties up Barbie!! A seemingly innocent, floppy-eyed baby doll turns menacing. It’s terrible!! And when the toys finally escape, they are taken by a dump truck to be busted up and burned. Oh, the horror!! I could barely watch.

Well, all’s well that end’s well, sort of. The toys get reunited with their owner Andy, who is off to college, and there’s a sentimental finale, which I won’t ruin for you since I’ve ruined enough already.

I give Toy Story 3 three stars out of four. The animation is cool, but it’s not the slap-happy comedy I was hoping to see. It should be re-named Toy Nightmare… or Nightmare on Toy Street… or Psycho Toys… or Screaming Toys 3... or Fiends of Chucky... or Night of the Living Toys, or, well, you get the idea.

Sunday, June 27, 2010


At last, The Flaming Bore is home and ready to rest up from the adventures with the great neph. Here is a pic from our first night at Toronto Lake after a storm passed through. We were happy not to be at the receiving end of this lightning strike. More tomorrow after the writing side of my brain has regenerated.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


The gad-about Flaming Bore has been on the road much of the last four days and is heading out again to the Big City, and then to a cabin on the lake for a few days, then back to the City, then back to southeast Kansas. Great neph Bo is visiting, so we can't sit still for long. Big Bore has been staying at home. He much prefers his role as live-in cat guy and yard dude rather than go bouncing all around Kansas in the heat. Until next week, when I should finally be in one place for a while, here are a few pics from the Bore Gardens.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Big Bore has made a special request that I blog today about one of his pet peeves. He’s about ready to pop a vein because he believes animal rights groups are going too far in their efforts. He keeps seeing a TV commercial about saving cows from being corralled with electric prods. Now he’s all for cats and dogs, other pets, and zoo animals being treated well, but his belief is that anything killed for human consumption is fair game. There, I’ve said it, and I hope he feels better.

Now, I’ve never seen the commercial. I typically flake out when commercials come on and leave the living room to do something productive, like play a game of Catch 21 on the computer or go to the bathroom. And I’m not familiar with cattle prods, other than I think that being branded by a hot iron would hurt more. But, what do I know. I’m not a cow, (contrary to what I was likely called when I was a teacher).

“They’re trying to play on people’s emotions and make you feel guilty about eating meat,” BB says about the commercial. “If they’re going to do commercials on cows, they’d better be doing them on sheep and pigs and deer and goat and chickens, and frogs, and fish, and lobsters, and squirrels, and pheasants….” you get his drift. “It’s called the food chain!” --and it has nothing to do with pets.

He is glad there are organizations to help sweet little kitty cats, but, let’s face it, all animals are not created equally. Let the cows be prodded and butchered, he says, and quit wasting money trying to save them from the slaughterhouse. It’s not gonna happen. Well, except maybe in India, I suppose.

Now, I’ve blogged before that I’m not much of a meat eater. Although I’m not a vegetarian, I go long stretches without eating the stuff. Who am I to deprive McDonald’s Corporation of employing billions of people selling billions of hamburgers, or to deny a child of having a Happy Meal? So, I am giving Big Bore his say-so today--and he didn’t even have to prod me. Much. Stick with saving pets, animal rights groups. Thank-you very much.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


(Flood receding in downtown Estes Park, Colorado, July 15, 1982.)

Library Lady and I were talking the other day about the recent flooding tragedy in Arkansas and how my great neph Luke and I missed it by a week during our travels there earlier this month. (We stayed at a motel in a town close to the affected campground.) She reminded me that this wasn’t my first miss with a disastrous flood. Back in 1982 I was at Estes Park, Colorado the day the nearby Lawn Lake dam broke, killing three campers and devastating the downtown.

I was with Big Sis and her family in a cabin next to one of two rivers flowing into Estes Park. At the time we heard the early morning radio news about the dam bursting, we weren’t sure yet which river would be affected by the flooding, the north one or south one we were by, so I grabbed my then-11-year-old nephew Brandon by the hand, got my billfold, and we scooted up to higher land. No one else felt our urgency. They stayed at the cabin listening to the radio and eating breakfast.

Brandon and I would surely be the soul survivors. “They just wouldn’t listen to us,” I would sadly tell our rescuers. “Alas, eggs and bacon were more important to them.”

But, as it turned out, the flood was raging down the north river. Big Sis yelled the, “All’s clear!” sign to us, and Brandon and I returned to the cabin to scour through the leftovers. “Be prepared.” That’s The Flaming Bore motto.

We drove into Estes Park to look at the devastation. Water and debris were raging down Main Street (photo above) and into Estes Lake. It was sad to see this little mountain town in such a mess, and I felt sorry for those who lost their lives, forever buried under the rocks and mud of the landslide. They didn’t know what hit them.

A few years ago Big Bore and I went to Estes Park, which has long since recovered, but, from a distance, Rocky Mt. National Park still shows the gaping scar of Lawn Lake’s dam bursting (above picture). Up close, however, giant boulders harmlessly rest in the area as though they have always been there, and a little stream splashes calmly over them. It’s a peaceful scene. The kind where you suck in the fresh mountain air and are thankful that you have this day to enjoy the beauty. No one would think that 28 years ago those rocks and water came angrily rushing down the mountainside, causing death and destruction. The power of water is, indeed, a force not be taken lightly.

Monday, June 14, 2010


There’s a new goofball game show on GSN that has joined my list of guilty pleasures. It's called "Baggage," and it’s hosted by, hold your ears, Jerry Springer. Even though it’s another reality dating show, Big Bore, too, finds it on his must-see list…mainly because the contestants on it are often beyond weird. Here’s the premise (good luck following it):

A guy or gal is introduced to three potential dates, but each has three pieces of personal “baggage” that might be turn-offs. They come in small, medium, and large bags. Small might be something like: “I still live with my parents.” Medium-- “I refuse to wear deodorant.” Large-- "I’m am alcoholic bisexual hoarder with six toes on each foot." Okay, so I made up that last one. Whatever. The picker weeds away those whose “baggage” is the most offensive and supposedly ends up with the lesser of three evils. The pickee then learns one piece of baggage about the picker and has the option of accepting or rejecting the date. In between all the revelations, Jerry cracks jokes about the contestants and their oddball quirks, which is half the fun.

This show has gotten me to thinking about what my own “baggage” is, other than the fact that I’m 60 and addicted to word games. I decided on: I demand help when lifting anything heavier than 15 pounds; I share my living space with three cats and their needs are #1; and I absolutely hate cooking. I’m not sure in what order of turn-off each would be, small-medium-large, but I suspect no man in his right mind would accept any of them.

I asked Big Bore, who is obviously not in his right mind, what he thinks my baggage is, and his ideas were not one of the three I’d chosen.

“You’re on the computer too much,” he said.

“I am not!”

“You sing in your sleep.”


“You sing when you’re awake.”

“What’s wrong with that?”

“You either don’t know the words or you make them up.”

“So sue me.”

When I told him what I’d chosen for my baggage, he said none of them were a problem for him. He doesn’t mind doing my heavy lifting, he prefers to do the cooking since its better than eating out of a box, and since he carries on full conversations with the cats, I’d say he’s as goofy about them as I am.

Truth be known, we both probably have enough “baggage” to fill up a cargo plane.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


Last month when I went to the city office to pay the water bill and sweetly gritch about trashy trash about town, I also inquired about the Holy Grail of Sports and was directed to, da dum, a horseshoe pit!! Yes, indeed, hidden east of the old tennis courts and Turd Creek are two ancient, but functioning, stakes surrounded by sand. Big Bore and I cleared out the weeds and are in horseshoe heaven!!

Ever since I checked the rules and learned that I should be given a 10-foot “handicap” due to being a wimpy woman, my accuracy has been a tad better. I’m still losing to Big Bore, but the margin of defeat isn’t always as great as it used to be, and I’ve been checking out some websites from the “pros” to get tossing tips. I predict that before the official end of horseshoe season, whenever the heck that is, I shall enjoy the ringing taste of victory!

Friday, June 11, 2010


JUNE 7, 2010

Thursday, June 10, 2010


Of all my college roommates, the one who had the worst luck with guys was The Cowgirl. Our first night together in our apartment house was an omen of losers to come. Her boyfriend at the time chased her into the house, and while they were in the bedroom arguing, I couldn’t help but overhear her screaming, “No! Don’t!” He then slammed back into the living room where I was, with a packing knife in his hand. Holy homicide! I feared my new roomie was a goner!

--But Cowgirl was okay…physically, anyway. The soon-to-be-ex-boyfriend had taken the knife to a stuffed teddy bear he’d once given her. Poor teddy was decapitated and stuffing was strewn everywhere. I helped Cowgirl re-stuff it and we wrapped duct tape around its neck several times. Teddy stayed but her boyfriend, who, ironically, had the nickname Bear, was out the door and her life.

Next up came Jim, nicknamed, and I say this in all disgusting truth, Easy. He was a swarthy Italian-type lothario Cowgirl met at The Basement, a college pub I’ve mentioned in a previous blog or two. I thought he was a muscle-bound blow-hard of the first degree, but she was goofy for the guy for quite a while…until someone asked her, “What are you doing dating Ira _______? He’s married and has two little kids.” Yes, her Mr. Wonderful was a no good, cheating lowlife. Cowgirl was livid.

Always up for a raging confrontation, she decided to stage the break-up at our apartment when he came to pick her up for a date. She had her “support group” of gals hiding in the bedroom to eavesdrop. When Easy/Jim/Ira arrived, he immediately put on his smooth move to the sofa, kissy, kissy, at which point Cowgirl said something like, “How do your wife and kids feel about you being here?”

Silence. Awkward silence. He’d been had. Easy wasn’t going to be able to talk his way out of this one so easily. Red-faced, he started mumbling some lame excuse, but Cowgirl gave him a royal tongue lashing that turned him into the pathetic weasel that he was. What a great moment! I wish we’d had video cameras back then so we could have filmed it all as he shrunk out the door. Jerk!

Now that she is happily married, we can laugh about those long ago times of men and misery. Whoever came up with the saying, “You’ve got to kiss a lot of frogs before you catch your handsome prince” surely had Cowgirl in mind. Her frogs were just bigger and slimier than most.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


“Oh, boy! Oh, boy! The season finale of ‘Glee’ is on tonight!” I announced to Big Bore yesterday morning while thumbing through the TV Guide. Not only that, but a new ‘Kathy Griffin Special’ would follow. Two hours of toe-tapping entertainment and naughty laughter. I couldn’t wait. To pass by the time, I would do yard work, more yard work, and then go down to the library to do---yard work. But all that squatting and back bending would be worth it at the end of the day when I settled down on the sofa at 8 PM to watch….the satellite dish crap out.

Yes, folks, at five minutes till 8 a storm arrived in our fair burg and 30 seconds into “Glee” the reception went on the fritz.

“Why does this ALWAYS happen?” I whined to BB. “I wait all day to watch my favorite shows, and POOF, the TV screen goes blank!”

“Oh, just be patient and it’ll be back on soon,” he consoled me But it wasn’t, and we whiled away the time and disappointment playing gin rummy. Fifty minutes into me winning every game, the picture on the TV mercifully reappeared during a crummy commercial, and we got to watch the final six minutes of “Glee.” Whoop-de-do.

Next up, Kathy Griffin. Maybe she would put me in a better mood. But, BAM, one minute into her ornery stand-up act, the satellite connection went out again! Sonuva$#@! “I can’t believe it!!”

Happily, the TV recovered much sooner than the previous show, and my bad mood subsided. We got to see most of Kathy do her schtik on Oprah, Sharon Stone, Pamela Anderson, and hoarders. BB laughed so loudly at Kathy imitating Oprah raving about eating “deep fried butter” that I wasn’t sure what was shaking the house--the thunder or him.

Well, the storms have finally blown over today and I’m getting ready to watch last night’s “Glee” finale on Fox Network’s website, thank god for large favors. If the Internet Service Provider blows a gasket and gets disrupted, though, I’m going to blow my own gasket and change the name of the show from “Glee” to “Royally Pissing Me Off.” Wish me luck.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Sunday night we watched a PBS special, “Ed Sullivan presents Rock and Roll of the 1960s.” Man, oh, man! Talk about a rippin’ trip down Memory Lane. The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Animals, Gerry and the Pacemakers, Mamas and the Papas, Bee Gees, Beach Boys, Herman’s Hermits, Doors. Ed, the old geezer, had ’em all.

Now, Big Bore was just a little whip when Sullivan filled the CBS 7 PM Sunday TV time slot after “Lassie,” but I can well remember feeling groovy watching the show on Mama Bore’s black and white RCA in our dining room. It was here that I picked George as my favorite Beatle and where I was fashionably inspired by Michelle Phillips’ colorful granny gowns with the empire waists. Mom made me one, in which I still lounge around the house occasionally. It’s one of those “one size fits all” designs, so no matter what condition my body is in, I can wear it. The material must be woven with Kryptonite. It’s indestructible.

BB says he dug the mellow sound of the Mamas and the Papas, as well as Michelle’s long, straight hair, which she was constantly swishing about, hypnotizing all horny, young males in the viewing audience. He was also a Beatles fan. “Their song lyrics meant something. They told a story.”

There’s nothing on TV today that comes close to being what The Ed Sullivan Show was 40-50+ years ago. Not only did he feature wildly famous rock groups, but he also had other acts--ventriloquists, dancers, comedians, gymnasts, animal tricks, jugglers, and a manic guy who’d spin plates. Lots and lots of big plates. All at the same time. Would the manic guy keep them spinning? Would they fall to the floor? Would Ed be sweeping up fine china after the show? Oh, the suspense! Well, okay, maybe you had to be there. --And if you weren’t, you really missed out on, in Ed’s legendary words, a “really big shoooo!!”

Monday, June 7, 2010


The Scripp’s National Spelling Bee was televised live last Friday night and I, having lettered in letters during my teen years, had to show off my spelling prowess to Big Bore. That was until I found out that every damned word was foreign: ochidore, stromuhr, metateriole, appoggiatura, pococurante. I kept missing word after word after word.

“What’s with this?” I asked the television. “I’ve never heard of ANY of these words!” I consulted my Webster’s Dictionary, 11th edition, and very few of them were even listed. This so-called National Spelling Bee had a definite international sound.

Now, I don’t profess to know every word in the dictionary, but I do consider myself to have a voluminous vocabulary. I didn’t get a degree in teaching English to 15-year-olds for nothing, you know. But these words were TOTALLY out of my realm.

And that’s not all that agitated me about the National Spelling Bee. The host was Chris Hanson, for gosh sakes!! Where might you have heard this name or seen his face, you ask? He’s also the lousy host of that highly educational ABC series known as “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette.” What qualifies him to even squat in the same room as these brainiac kids? Well, he had a “color commentator” sidekick who was a national spelling champ a few decades back. I can’t recall his name, but he provided in-depth insight into the word play, such as:

“I think the third syllable of this word might throw her, Chris,” and “That second vowel is a little tricky." Dynamic stuff. What’s more, the whole routine of introducing the spellers and the actual attempts at spelling the words was a snore fest. It went kind of like this:

“Our next contestant, from Kansas, is The Flaming Bore. She’s 60-years-old, enjoys gardening and photography, and her favorite word is triskaidekaphobia.”

“Flaming Bore, your word to spell is flibbertigibbety.”


“Yes, flibbertigibbety.”




“That’s right.”

“Are there any alternate pronunciations?”

“No, there are not any alternate pronunciations.”

“Flibbertigibbety. Hmmm. What is the country of origin?”

“It’s from Middle English, 15th century.”

“Could you use it in a sentence, please?”

“Yes. Because The Flaming Bore was insecure and flighty about spelling the word flibbertigibbety, she became flibbertigibbety.”

“Flibbertigibbety. Am I pronouncing it correctly?”

“Yes, you are. Flibbertigibbety.”

And it goes on and on like this until the flibbertigibbety contestant finally gives it a verbal stab, for better or for worse. This makes chess look like a contact sport.

Finally, after an hour or so, a winner was declared. She was a little gal from Ohio. I can’t pronounce, let alone spell, her name. It always seems like the winners in the National Spelling Bee have a “country of origin” other than the United States and they can correctly manipulate those letters off their talented tongues better than anyone who was Born in the USA and has lived here for six decades, like me.

I checked the Internet to find out if the words in the National Spelling Bee have always been this ridiculousy difficult. The word that won the Bee in 1940 was therapy. How ironic. That’s exactly what I needed after watching this show, now that I have a magnanimous inferiority complex. I think the contest should be renamed the International Spelling Bee for Super Smart Kids Who Don’t Have Anything Else to Do But Learn How to Spell Every Blasted Word in the Universe. Then I won’t feel like such a: d-u-m-b-y, uh, d-u-m-m-e-e, er, d-u-h-m-i, or is it d-u-m-m-y. Whatever.

Sunday, June 6, 2010


The diamond hunters are back from Arkansas! Alas, not richer, but we still had several carets worth of fun swimming, caving, exploring nature, buying souvenirs, eating pizza, and getting acquainted with a motel iguana. (Don’t touch it!!)

Luke was a great travel mate and co-pilot. He kept his old great auntie entertained with non-stop talking. Here are a few examples:

Here’s my definition of flabbergast: it’s when you burp and fart at the same time.

Why do they call this Y City?

I don’t know why you just don’t shave those hairs on your chin instead of pluck them.

Whoa! I think I’ve just had a déjà vu moment!

Do you know the birth state of Orville Wright?

Do you know you’re six times as old as I am?

Let’s play the Random Game. Just say any old word.

You wanted me to be your Atlas guide, so you have to trust me to turn here and not take the map from me.

Yes, I know who Einstein is. Theory of relativity. E=MC squared.

Aunt Nancy, quick! Get your camera out! There’s a lizard on that rock!

Ah, to be 10-years-old again.....