Shades of Gray from Grayson Co, TX #808 – ’til the wheels fall off

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“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”

Hunter S. Thompson

While I just love this quote, I wish I could feel that I lived my life with this as my creed. My body is getting used up and worn out, but I feel a little short of proclaiming “what a ride!”

monos en theos…†…jim

Shades of Gray from Grayson Co, TX #795 – BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER!

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We had seen the green highway sign that read ➞ Carpenters Bluff 4 miles. I did a google and saw this nice looking old bridge spanning the Red River into Oklahoma. Hey being a photographer, it looked a place to go.

The journey started easy enough. A nice little adventure we hobbits thought.

Now I am from West Texas. The roads there are straight. You can see for a long way and navigational turns hardly ever require you to remove your right arm from that manly dangle across the seat. About a mile into the route this little car came upon my bumper. I am from West Texas,  I am also comfortable with space. This follow vehicle had the drivers side mirror hanging with baling wire. The otherwise pleasant (I am sure) young lady was a girl of many talents. She had a Marlboro in one hand, cell phone in the other, texting of course. She also had a big gulp that she somehow was working. And she was a bumper rider.

This road proceeded to become nightmarish in it’s 90 degree turns. The big reflection in my little mirror remained a constant too close size. I swear I took a quick glimpse in the mirror as we were making a right turn and both my dogs were still leaning right from the last left turn. I kept looking for a place to pull off but every turnoff was marked with a bullet hole  ridden “no trespassing” or “don’t even think of turning here” signs.

We pressed on and I kept pressing pedals trying faster and slower. The multi tasker seemed oblivious to my existence. Just as I was thinking I needed a Xanax, a road going to the left appeared. Relief.

We made a faster than comfortable left and I was ready to get some blood back to my knuckles. My wife is afraid of heights and does not have a fondness for crossing old bridges. I hear this drawn out “honey” moan from her as I see that the “nice looking old bridge” looms dead ahead. No one mentioned it had only one narrow lane. I start to pause to collect myself when I get a flash of lights from my mirror. The girl of many talents has also made the turn and is itching to be in Oklahoma.

We reluctantly start over the bridge. I am sure the view of the setting sun on the Red River is nice, but my eyes never wavered from the sagging wood planks and missing or rusting guard rails. With a sigh and a pulloff we rested safely in Oklahoma. The girl gave a friendly wave as she raced on to her next victim.

Now the only thing left is to turn around and repeat the process.

When you come to a bridge over troubled waters, don’t overthink it. Just consider yourself blessed to have the bridge…†…monos en theos…jim





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Just think, today I can try to explain to my granddaughter about “yesterday”, that when we needed to make a phone call we used to go into these glass booths that were almost everywhere (except when you really needed one). You then had to drop in a dime and put your finger in this dial that had numbers on it and you turned it. Yes, kind of like “Wheel of Fortune” game.

In forty years or so, she will have the same conversation with her child or grandchild, explaining how we used to get mail in a box that was in front of your house. And to send mail, you had to hand write it, put it in an envelope and then attach this thing called a stamp to it. This person called a mailman would then come by your house, take the letter and some how three to four days later the letter magically arrived to whomever you had sent it to.

and let’s not even get started on explaining “pony express” !

Change, fight it or go with it, cause it will come.     monos en theos ††† jim


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I don’t know what age this truck is, but I am pretty sure that I am older. In the span of seeing this old truck and in the short time walking towards it, I saw more than a couple of men with their wives stop as they passed by this classic. You could see the awe and pull of the truck through through the pauses and attention to some details that they would share with their disinterested partner.

Men love to look at old trucks. I don’t quite follow the appeal. Yet, while saying that, I had an old 56 chevy truck that I bought and worked on. While it was nice to have, it was a lot of work to keep it on the road and looking good. It was a head-turner and for that same man logic, I loved having what other men wanted.

So the question I have is at what point to men become classics themselves? We share a lot of the same high maintenance.  We require a lot of upkeep. Parts are always breaking, rusting and falling into disrepair. Somewhere along our timeline, we have to put in the same efforts into ourselves in order to become a classic. Or we might as well  be rusting away on cinderblocks in a field awaiting someone to come bye and take pause, give a low  whistle and say “I can fix this thing up!”

Take care of yourself. Become a classic!  en theos ††† jim


hard egg

I haven’t a clue what the meaning behind this image is. I had this old wrench of my granddads’, a rusty metal sheet that I love to use as a background. And then there is the egg. I wish I had some artsy fartsy lingo to explain away my madness, but I don’t. That is where I fail as an artist, or maybe not. So enjoy it if you like it, otherwise fix yourself some egg salad.

cheers from a goof ball………nada da turbe…jim

Photo of Da day @ Da Pine #103

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!! Remember all the non-material things that you have to be thankful for. You might need to look across the street for your real treasure. Don’t  “dodge” your gifts….be blessed…..nada te turbe….jim

“Don’t hoard treasure down here where it gets eaten by moths and corroded by rust or—worse!—stolen by burglars. Stockpile treasure in heaven, where it’s safe from moth and rust and burglars. It’s obvious, isn’t it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.”      Matthew 6:19