Monday, September 15, 2014

IT'S MATING SEASON

A small zoo in Arkansas had a very rare species of gorilla. Within a few weeks the gorilla, a female, became very difficult to handle.   Upon examination, the veterinarian determined the problem. The gorilla was in season. To make matters worse, there was no male gorilla available.

Thinking about their problem, the Zoo Keeper thought of Bobby Lee Walton, a redneck part-time worker responsible for cleaning the animal cages. Bobby Lee, like most rednecks, had little sense but possessed ample ability to satisfy a female of any species.

The Zoo Keeper thought they might have a solution. Bobby Lee was approached with a proposition. Would he be willing to mate with the gorilla for $500.00?

Bobby Lee showed some interest, but said he would have to think the matter over carefully. The following day, he announced that he would accept their offer, but only under four conditions.

1. "First", Bobby Lee said, "I ain't gonna kiss her on the lips." The Keeper quickly agreed to this condition.

2. "Second", he said, "You can't never tell no one about this." The Keeper again readily agreed to this condition.

3. "Third", Bobby Lee said, "I want all the childrun raised Southern Baptist." Once again it was agreed.


4. And last of all, Bobby Lee stated "You gotta give me another week to come up with the $500.00." 


Friday, September 12, 2014

GOD BLESS AUNT LERA

You know the Lord is with someone when they seem to be dying of the same heart attack for 30 years.
I lost track of how many bypasses she had.
Lera had a bad ticker, but a good heart. 

She was the last of the 4 Williams sisters from Alto Texas, which included my mother. 
Before she died on September 12, 2011, she still loved to crappie fish and play bridge. She was a Certified Bridge Life Master, which I believe is the equivalent of being a Five-Star General.
When I was a kid and we would go to Lera's, there was always that laugh. A throw your head back raucous laugh. I guess all 4 sisters had that laugh, but Lera's was the prettiest.
And there was her Texas Sheath Cake, and Buttermilk pie.
Funny, I was a chef for 25 years, but I'm not sure Lera would have believed that I could cook my way out of a wet paper bag.

That might have something to do with my storied past with Lera.

A few months before she died I had talked to her on the phone. I told her I had finally quit doing drugs, that I had 2 years of being clean and sober.
"We tried to tell you!" Lera said.
Lera. She was a kind woman, in a Joyce Meyer kind of way.
She suffereed no fools; pulled no punches.


I can remember when I was 14 I had had a key made for her car after my parents had started watching the mileage on theirs rather closely, and on Saturday nights during the summer of 1971 I would slide noiselessly out the back door and walk to Lera's car, then meet up with my other 14 year old pals in the middle of the night, and we would joy ride and smoke Swisher Sweets and I knew of a certain window that if you knocked on it at 2 a.m. a couple 14 year old chicks would come crawling out, and its off to Devils Backbone to make out. When finally I was caught (by the Southlake Police) and had to give the key back to Lera and try to explain what the heck I was doing with a key for her car, I don't remember anything except her bright and burning blue eyes and pursed lips, as she said without much amusement:
"What in the world were you thinking?"
It was the eyes that got me, eyes that blazed and sparkled with kindness, and could have melted steel.


Thursday, September 11, 2014

Handyman Bulletholes Part Two



Dear Handyman Bulletholes;
I had to take my car to the shop with transmission problems. They said they would replace my transmission for $1500.
I told them that I had heard my transmission was hard to find and expensive to rebuild.
“We got lucky and found one” the man said. So I said yes, please fix my transmission for 1500 dollars.
Well, they ran into some trouble and it cost them a lot more than 1500 to fix my transmission.
It took them 10 days to fix it. During that time they even loaned me a car to use. So when I went to pick my car up I was worried about how much they were going to charge me.
When I got there, they handed me two bills.
One was for 1500 dollars.
Another was for 1700 dollars.
The man told me that 2500 was what he should have charged me for the transmission, but he did not expect me to pay that at all.
The one for 1700 dollars would let him almost break even on the deal, but he would still be losing money.
And the one for 1500 dollars was all I owed him, because he intended to stand good on the quote he gave me.
I feel just terrible. What should I do?

Stranded in Euless



Dear Stranded;
This reminds me of back when I was working 5 jobs.
I was selling insurance over the phone.
I was selling and installing landscaping.
I was cooking on Wednesday nights for First Methodist Church of Hurst, and other special occasions that came up.
And I had a paper route, throwing the Dallas Morning News at the crack of dawn.
But I also sold roofs. I would go door to door, doing estimates on damaged roofs and hopefully they would use my company and I would get a commission.
There was man I tried to sell to. I went by several times, took him presents, sent a Christmas card, everything I knew to do.

Finally one day he called me. He said he had just had his house painted and was ready to do his roof.
On one condition.
It seems the painters had forgotten to paint the top of his second floor chimney. If I could get that painted for him for a modest price, then he would sign a contract for us to do his roof!
Finally! Persistence paid off, and I agreed to paint the top of his chimney for 40 dollars.

How hard could it be?

Well, let me tell you. I got up there on a 60 foot extension ladder, in a 30 mile an hour wind, with a paint can in one hand and a brush in the other and spent 6 terrifying hours swinging back and forth up there with no parachute, life and limb at risk, and did I mention I am TERRIFIED of heights? Somehow I did it.
I went and knocked on the door, and he came out and said “Looks good” and grabbed his checkbook. Just before he started to fill the check out, I said:
“You know sir, I told you 40 dollars and I intend to stick to it, but that job was worth a helluva lot more than 40 bucks”
He said “Yes Bullets, I know it was and I sure do appreciate it.”
He tore the check out of the book, handed it to me and smiled very kindly.

I waited until I got to the car to take a look.
There it was.
40 bucks.

It sounds like you have a very honest mechanic. I'd keep him.

Handyman Bulletholes

Dear Handyman Bulletholes is an irregularly occurring topic here at Bulletholes FB page.
Here is Part One

Friday, August 29, 2014

BACK IN MY USING DAYS

I went an signed a lease at an apartment one afternoon. I was going to move in the next day. But it took 4 hours to get out of the parking lot because while I was there they shut down a meth lab.

DEA, Fire Department HAZMAT, everywhere.
I thought, Oh man, I’m going to love it here.
I think at one point there had been three in operation while I lived there.
That’s the place where the manager called me in one day and said they were shutting all the drug lab people down.
She wanted to make sure I wasn’t involved because she liked me.
“Oh, no ma’am. I stay clear of those folks. When I want some dope, I go all the way across town to get it. I don’t want no one to know where I got it, or that I have it once I get home.”
And I laughed, because I said it like it was a joke, and she laughed too.
But the thing is...it was the truth.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

BEFORE SHE LEAVES FOREVER

I had Spring Rolls, and Yum Nua, 
a Thai Beef salad last night.
We walked out to the cars
Stood there a moment
Then it was time for goodbye
I looked in her face
And then it hit me
How far away Seattle was
How long it would take to walk there
How long it would take
If I had wings
For me to
Fly there

Then I saw her eyes
That’s when it really hit me
And I did the only thing I knew to do
Which was to bury my face in her neck
And cry and
Cry and cry
Cry, cry cry
And look back up
Bury my face in her neck and cry
Look back up
Bury my face in her neck and cry
Look back up
Bury my face in her neck and cry
Look back up
Bury my face in her neck and cry

Then finally after 20 times and I looked back up
And I laughed
“I’ve done this before, haven’t I?”
“Yes daddy”
“When?”
“When I went to college and
When I got married and
When I went to Denver”
I said “Oh yeah” and I
Buried my face in her neck and cried.

I had had the Spring Rolls, and the
Yum Nua, a Thai Beef salad last night.
She said they might go to Joe T’s tonight,
Before she leaves forever in the morning.
I'll probably have the fajitas.

Friday, August 22, 2014

DON'T STOP BELIEVING

We have a real divide going within my Senior Class of 1975.
It seems that our class song is “Forever Young”, from Dylans 1974 release, "Planet Waves". We voted on it in 1975.
Yet somehow more than half of the class has adopted the Rod Stewart version. They are convinced, as only true Tea Party Republicans can be, that our class song "Forever Young" is written and sung by Rod Stewart.
Stewart DID did do a song called "Forever Young" but  it did not come out until 1988.
We graduated in 1975.
So, either we are experiencing some kind of time travel, or some form of revisionist history, or else my entire class sucked at math even worse than I did.
It doesnt add up, but they insist the Stewart version is OUR version.
I have offered $100 cash and a steak dinner to anyone that can produce a Pre-1976 Rod Stewart version of the song. That no one can has not deterred their belief at all.

I've heard a rumor that at the 30th Reunion, someone put on the Dylan version of Forever Young, and halfway through, someone else yanked it. How nuts is THAT?

The debate gets quite heated sometimes, and someone from the Stewart camp invariably will claim that Stewart and Dylan share the royalties for "Forever Young".
Yes, they share the royalties for Stewart's largely plagiarized 1988 version. The lyrics are almost identical, and Stewart claims he does not know how he subliminally managed to rewrite Dylans original with only a few minor changes, but to his credit his lawyers contacted Dylan and offered half credit and royalties for the Stewart version. 
Stewart DOES NOT get partial credit or royalties for Dylans 1974 original "Forever Young".
To mention this only cements the notion in that camp that I am a know-it-all asshole.
So, I have taken a new approach.
I say “I never voted for Forever Young anyway. I cast my vote in 1975 for “Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey.”


They look at  me all glassy-eyed and I’m sure it does not occur to them that “Don’t Stop Believin” didn’t come out until 1981, but at this point, what’s the fucking difference? 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

TO THE BATMOBILE



"Show a man what he expects to see, and he won't look beneath the surface." - Catwoman 

Sunday, August 17, 2014

I AIN'T BLACK

I've walked down the street my whole life, sometimes smack dab in the middle. I've played football, baseball, kick the can, rode on bikes with my posse', you name it, in the middle of the street. Never, not once had a cop tell me or my buddies to get out of the street. Had some swerve to keep from hitting me, or wait until we finish our football play to pass.
But then, I aint black.


I am little suspicious that this kid didn't give the cop a hard time, maybe even belly butt him and go for his gun. But I'm equally suspicious of the lack of info the cops are rolling out here. The first shot fired in the car, then as he attempted to flee, shot in the back (autopsy disputes this), then on his knees, hands in the air when the last shots fired 35 feet away from the cruiser?(some witnesses seem to dispute this)
I'm not sure at this point any of the details even matter any more, seeing some of the images of a city blowing up on itself.
Explain it to me in terms where I don't sense excessive force was used.
The Detroit riots of 1967 started over less. I know, I was there.

Then, a heavily Militarized Police Force takes the street. All that does is turn the volume up.
I have some friends that up till now I thought were a little paranoid about a police state.
Not any more.
If I can't see your face and badge, you aren't a cop. 

"We rolled lighter than that in an actual war zone."
Veteran of the 82nd Airborne, commenting on police gear in Ferguson Missouri.
When I was a boy I watched 10,000 National Guard move into Detroit. They "rolled lighter" than this too.

“One Riot, One Ranger”
When I was a boy my daddy marched me to see this statue at Love Field at least twice a year when we flew back and forth to Detroit, and told me the story of Captain Jay Banks, and how black folks had rioted in Mansfield Texas, and the Rangers were called in. Jay Banks walked down Main Street and unlocked the Mayor and the Sheriff from out of the jail, while the wide-eyed negro rioters looked on
Funny thing though.
The story my daddy told me was not the real story. The real story is that The Supreme Court ordered Mansfield School District to desegregate in 1956, and the white folks rioted, even hung 3 negro dummies up over the entrance to the school. Peace was kept by sending the 3 black students to Fort Worth School District. Mansfield took another 9 years to desegregate, and only did so after losing federal funding.
The south, and my daddy, sure was funny about that kind of thing.


I don't have permission to print this image, but I'm doing it anyway. This is Captain Jay Banks, protecting the peace and dignity of Mansfield High School, while a negro dummy hangs in effigy over the entrance to the school.

SHE ROLLED HER EYES

I went through the Burger King drive through yesterday.
“I’d like the #1 Whopper with, no cheese, no ketchup, and extra veges. And a diet coke.” “Would you like cheese on that?” they always ask.
Always always always.
Sometimes they will interrupt me between “no ketchup, and extras veges “ to ask.
I try to remain polite and repeat for them:
 “No cheese, thank you, and no ketchup, with extra veges. And a diet coke”
They will repeat the part about the cheese and ketchup, but usually they get hung up on veges.
“Is that like the pickles?” they ask.
“Yes, pickles, tomato lettuce and onion”
They repeat back “ Pickles, tomato and lettuce”
“And onion” I remind them “with a diet coke and fries.

But by now I am a little worn out and I’m starting to lose patience. So when there is a 10 second stretch of silence as they ponder what a vegetable is, and then ask me again “Would you like cheese on that?”
Even though I know they are hard-wired programmed to ask me that,I’m probably not all sweetness and light when I scream “NO!”.
Then when they ask what kind of drink I’d like that just about does it for me.
But I’ve learned to take a deep breath, and in the softest most angelic voice I have “Oh! I would love a diet coke”.

But yesterday. After going through this exercise and getting to the window they weren’t done with me yet.
She handed me the bag and I asked if she had put ketchup in there for me.
“I thought you said “NO Ketchup” she says.
“Right. No ketchup on the burger.”
“So you want ketchup NOW? she says.
“Yes please, for my fries”

And that’s when she rolled her eyes. She really did.

But that’s OK. I figure I deserve it.

All those times at the Jack-in-the Box on lunch break with your 3 very stoned friends, 1975…
 Jack: “Can I take your order?”
Driver: “Ummm, yeah man, what did you want?”
Backseat #1:“A coke, a taco, and some fries”
Backseat # 2 “ Lemme have a Whataburger with no pickles and a shake and onion rings”
Driver “Dude we are at jack in the Box”
Backseat #2 “Huh?” (muffled laughter)
Driver: “Dude, I’m trying to order, we are at Jack-in-the Box, get a fucking grip”
Backseat #2 “Is that where they have the big Macs?” (car explodes with laughter)

And it just goes downhill from there, right?
Once you started laughing, that was it.
How we didn’t starve, I don’t know.

Thursday, August 07, 2014

SHE BLINDED ME WITH SCIENCE, FAILED ME AT BIOLOGY

Back when I was married, my wife would ask me every now and then if we could have a baby.
Finally one day she asked and I said “Well, OK, go ahead and stop taking your pills”.
She was so happy!
Then I got home from work that day, and she had all these books, and calendars, and thermometers and stop watches and big Q-Tips and stuff.
Man, she was a real go-getter! I’d be having a cigarette after, ya know, and she would look at her watch and say “Ok, time to go again!”
It sure didn’t take very long to make a baby.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

THE GRIEVING PARENTS

"The Grieving Parents", a sculpture by artist Kathe' Kollwitz who lost a son to WWI.
I saw this sculpture 20 some years ago on a documentary, and was moved by the amount of grief the artist has rendered without much detail. It stuck with me, and over the years I tried to find it again. I just found the artist and this image last week.


The way the father holds himself, and the lack of any emotion on is face reminds me of my own father.


They say the face of the mother is that of Kathe'.



"

Kathe Kollwitz was informed of her son’s death in action on 30 October. ‘Your pretty shawl will no longer be able to warm our boy,’ was the touching way she broke the news to a close friend. To another friend she admitted, ‘There is in our lives a wound which will never heal. Nor should it.’
By December 1914 Kollwitz, one of the foremost artists of her day, had formed the idea of creating a memorial to her son, with his body outstretched, ‘the father at the head, the mother at the feet’, to commemorate ‘the sacrifice of all the young volunteers’. As time went on she attempted various other designs, but was dissatisfied with them all. Kollwitz put the project aside temporarily in 1919, but her commitment to see it through when it was right was unequivocal. ‘I will come back, I shall do this work for you, for you and the others,’ she noted in her diary in June 1919.

Twelve years later, she kept her word: in April 1931 she was at last able to complete the sculpture. ‘In the autumn – Peter, – I shall bring it to you,’ she wrote in her diary. Her work was exhibited in the National Gallery in Berlin and then transported to Belgium, where it was placed, as she had promised, adjacent to her son’s grave. There it rests to this day.