An old joke:

Two robins were sitting in a tree. "I'm really hungry," said the first one.

"Me too," said the second. "Let's fly down and find some lunch."

They flew to the ground and found a nice plot of plowed ground full of worms. They ate and ate and ate and ate 'til they could eat no more.

"I'm so full I don't think I can fly back up to the tree," said the first one.

"Me either. Let's just lay here and bask in the warm sun," said the second.

"O.K.," said the first.

They plopped down, basking in the sun. No sooner than they had fallen asleep, a big fat tom cat snuck up and gobbled them up.

As he sat washing his face after his meal, he thought, "I love baskin' robins."

. . . . . . . .

[ ... as Jann logs off, she hears the groans of readers everywhere ... ]


Okay, I am going to "own up" to something here.

I never thought I would admit this in public.

But my conscience is getting to me.

I watch "The Osbournes" (MTV).

I am an "Osbourne watcher".

Yep, and I laugh myself senseless.

Who would have ever thought that the weirdo rocker who ate too many drugs and bit the head off one too many bats would turn into a bizarre "reality tv" star?

While I find the two children, Kelly and Jack, way too obnoxious for my "adultness" ... I understand that they were raised by Ozzy Osbourne and what else can I expect, right?  Bud and Kitten Anderson they are not.

I have chosen not to focus on the kids and their antics, but instead watch ol' Ozzy trip, get confused and constantly yell, "Sharon? Sharon!" in an effort to get his wife to 'splain things. Ozzy is befuddled by the remote control, forgets his touring schedule, and struggles to catch the housecat.

Some how, some way ... I find his brain fried helplessness somewhat endearing. Perhaps pathetic. But always funny.

But fear not, I am not laughing at him. I am laughing with him.

Next season, MTV will pay million$ for "The Osbournes".

Ozzy is laughing all the way to the bank.


"Hello?" I answered.

"Hi, this is So-N-So ... I was calling about that recommendation for a webhost."

"Sure," I responded, "I recommend Dreamhost. They are inexpensive and have provided me with great service for years."

"Okay. We've secured our domain name so I will get that host. Oh, and I have a package of info to send to you."

"Do you want my address?" I asked.

"Oh yeah," he laughed, "that might be important."

I set about giving him my address. I warned him that if there are photos in the envelope to be sure to mark the envelope "Do Not Bend".

Then he rather timidly asked how to spell my last name.

" J O H N S O N "

Dead silence.

"Hello?" I asked. "You still there?"

I heard him mumble so I asked if he had heard me.

He confirmed that he had. But now, he requested that I spell my first name.

"J A N N "

Again, dead silence.

Then, I heard him start to laugh.

"It's "Jann"? All this time I thought it was "Chan" and I thought you spoke really good English for a little Asian girl!"

He couldn't have been farther from the reality:

At 6'0" and a Swede of blonde proportions, the only thing remotely Asian about me are the beautifully lacquered chopsticks I have for "special meals" and a name, that if not enunciated correctly, sounds quite like an Earl Derr Biggers' character working for the Honolulu police.


Okay, so what rock have I been living under?

Today, while watching the men play some first round golf at Augusta ... The Masters ... I accidentally hit the remote and switched the channel to VH-1.

I found myself transfixed. Mesmerized.

My ears were delighted in sound ecstasy.

Now, who are these people and how come I have not heard of them before?

The Corrs.

I loved what I was hearing. Beautiful people singing and playing music with a wee Celtic flair ... Bono (of U2) and Andrea Corr doing the old Lee Hazelwood/Nancy Sinatra hit, "Strawberry Wine". They covered some old songs with such sweet elegance that it would make the original artists blush in humble honor.

My remote got a workout with me switching back and forth from watching Sergio Garcia kiss the ball with a sweet putt at 17 ... to watching Andrea, Sharon, Caroline and Jim sing in harmony backed by a full orchestra.

I watched the last putt at Augusta, turned off the teevee, and promptly rushed in to login to Amazon to buy some Corrs' CDs.

I even had the CDs shipped "rushed".

Yeah, this has proven it. I gotta get out more.


Yeah, so the desert looks mighty pretty with the sun setting behind the silhouetted saguaros while the howling coyote beckons to the rising moon.

But did you know that within the desert lurks a huge monster simply waiting in the winds of time?

This is a phenomenon so strong and so prolific that it can change your existence in a matter of moments.

Its name? Haboob.

Haboob is an Arabic word for duststorm/sandstorm.

So what's the big deal?

Imagine this coming at you as you are driving down the highway, hiking in the desert mountains, or simply gardening in your back yard.

Yesterday, just a few miles south of Phoenix, numerous vehicles were enveloped in a huge dust storm that instantly reduced the highway driving visibility to zero ... resulting in a 26 vehicle pile-up.

Oh yeah ... I have been there. In many, many haboob.

Is the plural of haboob, habeeb? Haboobs? How about haboobies? Anyhow, I digress ...

A haboob is frightening. The damage can be dramatic. It is pure, choking dust that obliterates everything [link updated in 2012]. When it has passed, rain is likely to follow ... turning the remnants of the dust storm into mud. Mud everywhere.

So, the next time you see that beautiful desert sunset of orange and red and magenta ... remember this:

Those brilliant colors are produced by dust in the wind.

And haboobies may be lurking on the horizon.


I live in the great southwest where we have rattlesnakes, scorpions, killer bees, brown recluse and black widow spiders.

Those ... I can handle.

We also have giant "sewer roaches" ... which are really the American Cockroach. While the data shows that they can grow to two inches in length, I personally have witnessed them up to 3.5" in length. These buggers are hard to kill. And to make hunting them down all the more creepy, they can fly!

I keep all of the drains covered and put bleach in the toilet water when I am out of town (yes, they crawl up the sewer line and into the toilet bowl which is a real treat in the middle of the night).

Those ... I can handle.

But I do have a entomological nemesis: the cricket.

Yes, the cute little character found "on the hearth" can totally turn this cool, level headed woman into a freaked out banshee.


Those damned buglettes do not play fair!

First of all, they crick & crack with their hind legs with enough verve to drive the sober to drink.

And if their noise was not annoying enough, these creatures from Hell ... jump. Yes, jump. You attempt to capture one (to do the humane thing for release back outdoors) and they jump every which way ... and often towards you! This is simply not fair.

When I am outdoors, I do not bother, tease or attempt to frustrate the creatures of the bug kingdom ... so what gives them the right to come into my home and inflict this nonsense on me.

I have my space. They have their space.

Cross my borders and it is a rolled up newspaper for you, Mister!

So, this newly discovered big bug is a version of a Jerusalem Cricket.

If those creatures find their way a few hundred miles east, I will be packing my bags for the frozen tundra of the Arctic.

Hey, what's a little polar bear growling amongst friends, eh?


Just a quote:

"Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got a hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations." - George Bernard Shaw -


The last few months have been "hog heaven" for me.


I like sports. No wait, let me clarify that:


And the last few months have been slathered in the sweet potion of one sporting event after another.

Geesh, a girl just could not ask for better television, eh?

While I was in the hospital, my "big goal" was to get out of that wretched place in time to watch the Super Bowl. I came home on Super Bowl Sunday!

Then, the Olympics started. I literally watched every televised Olympic moment ... including the curling (of which I had NO clue what was going on but they were very serious with the sweeping and all so I figured it must be important. ;-)).

The World Figure Skating Championship. The various NBA games. The Coyotes playing hockey.

A slew of golf tourneys (including The Players Championship) with some tennis thrown in for spice that filled those days waiting for the NCAA College Basketball Championship to begin.

I have watched this bevy of college hoop with eager anticipation of tonight: The Finals. Do I have a favorite? Not really ... Maryland has never won the championship but Indiana is the underdog. This should be a good game.

Congrats to the UConn Huskies for their undefeated 39 - 0 season. Those ladies can really teach hoop clinic!

Meanwhile, the World Champion Arizona Diamondbacks (oh my it IS wonderful to say that) opened the baseball season today with a win against the San Diego Padres.

In a few days, The Masters will start and I will be glued to the television. I am an addict seeking the fix: watching these gentleman of golf "walking in the park" there in legendary Augusta. What am I saying? I want to be one of those guys walking in the park!

Yessiree, I am indeed in hog heaven. Oink.

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