YES, I AM still here, looking out this window on Main Street, and I am wondering if other people get as confused as I do sometimes.
Daughter Julie, for some unknown reason, has become a big fan of Professional Bull Riding. She keeps up with competitive point standings of riders and bulls, and goes to the event every year when it comes to Little Rock.
I didn’t know all this. Probably she told me, but I am just a man and do not listen.
So when she invited me to go with her to a PBR event I had no idea what I’d see.
I told her so. Her response was that there are many PBR competitions on television. “So watch some of these great athletes as they overcome huge challenges and try to win big prize money,” she said.
I surfed the tv until I found a PB event. Danged if it wasn’t Professional Bowlers, none of whom appeared to be great athletes.
By the time the weekend got here I wasn’t really looking forward to going go the event at that swell arena in North Little Rock, but I had promised daughter and she had bought us tickets.
There was a big crowd trying to get inside the arena. None of ‘em were wearing bowling shoes or shirts. In fact, I may have been the only person not in jeans and boots and a big black cowboy hat.
Inside, our seats were so high that I believe we were above the tree line. And there were no bowling alleys or pins on the arena floor, either. It was all dirt.
I’m not kidding.
Suddenly rock music began blaring. There were fireworks. The crowd was really excited. Screaming and waving to a tv camera, and holding up signs. Some girls were dancing as if they were trying to attract the attention of the professional bowlers. Well, they got my attention.
And then a giant, huge, monstrous, enormous, humongous bull burst through a gate with a scrawny cowboy on his back. The bull bucked and spun and kicked until the cowboy went flying off.
“Hey, this isn’t professional bowling,” I complained to Julie.
It didn’t last long — the clock showed 8 seconds — for the cowboy’s wild ride. Still, the crowd went crazy. Heck, a bowling ball goes down the alley in less than 8 seconds and nobody screams!
I didn’t understand everything that was going on, but I was interested in the dancing girls. Some of them were wearing pants that must’ve been spraypainted on. By someone who was trying to save paint.
Daughter said she was sorry if I was disappointed there were not professional bowlers. She even rode the ski lift down to the lower concourse and bought me one of those $10 cervezas. She was drinking $4 water. Now I see how the PBR promoters pay for the fireworks.
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THE GOOD EARTH. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a dime for every pear tree in bloom along Arkansas roadsides?
Many trees are fuzzy green on the limbs, and it won’t be long before yellow clouds of pollen are blowing onto your patio. Any day now the Japanese Cherry Blossom tree in my front yard will show its pale pink blooms, and the dogwoods aren’t far off, either.
One smart-aleck in our office said that skipping one hour for Daylight Saving Time just meant that we got one hour less rain.
Actually, in 2020, our area has had measurable rainfall on 38 of 70 days, as of Tuesday. Both January and February were above normal for rainfall.
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ANIMAL CRACKERS. Fellow birdwatcher Dennis Ritchie tracked me down by phone in order to comment upon a recent piece of wisdom in this newspaper column.
First of all, Perfesser Ritchie says that I shoulda gone to audubon.com for information about birds. Dennis also says that he no longer goes to the Cornell University site (Cornell is/was famous for its ornithological studies program) because the Cornellians made fools of themselves over that extinct woodpecker in the swamps of East Arkansas.
But Dennis was actually calling in reference to my comment on the arrival, proliferation, and eventual disappearance of the bird we call Roadrunner — Geococcyx Cuculidae.
Dennis says his memory of the no-longer seen bird was that virtually every time he saw one it had a lizard dangling from its beak.
He adds that he once saw a Roadrunner sitting on a rooftop enjoying a reptillian snack. I’m hoping it was the lizard that sells car insurance.
Meep, meep. And there is an argument over whether the cartoon Roadrunner says “Meep, meep,” or “Beep, beep.” That’s a silly argument and as you know I don’t get into silly arguments.
Dennis didn’t want to sound pro-hog or anti-hog, so he declined to comment upon the reported sighting of a peccary or javalina wild pig just north of Nashville.
Peccary or javalina. Now THAT’S a silly argument!
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THINGS I LEARNED from opening (and believing) email: “Would a fly without wings be called a walk?”
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WORD GAMES. Another set of twins: Rise and Shine. They’re morning people, but they’ll sleep late if Mom lets them.
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HE SAID: “Stuff your eyes with wonder, live as if you’d drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It’s more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories.” Ray Bradbury, science fiction writer
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SHE SAID: “Evil isn’t prejudiced. It doesn’t care what you look like; it just wants a place to rest. It’s up to you whether you give it that place.” Ruby Bridges, civil rights activist
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SWEET DREAMS, Baby