Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Oh, The Places You'll Go...In Texas!

If you're in a dour mood or disagreeable disposition, try these towns on for size:

1. Smiley, Texas (The Poultry Capital of the World)

2. Happy, Texas (The Town Without A Frown)

3. Paradise, Texas (Almost Heaven)

4, Rainbow, Texas (See You At the End of the Rainbow)

5. Sweet Home, Texas (Home Sweet Home)

See y'all out on the trail!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Empty Handed, Gassed Up & Down For the Count

In Port Arthur, Texas [Southeast Texas]
A petty thief attempted to stick up a nonagenarian lady at her home. When the 90 year old woman answered the door, one of the men pulled out a handgun and demanded money from the elderly retiree. They were told she did not have any money. The man repeated his demand for money and the woman apologized and told him she didn’t have any money, holding up her empty hands. The men then ran away.

Say you want to ply your trade as a thief, but your target area is in the economic toilet. Do you take your talents to the ritzier part of town? Heavens to Betsy, no! Only milksops give up easily. No, no, no. The financial state of your neighborhood highlights the conundrum you face in your entrepreneurial calling. What is a petty thief to do? Might I suggest that you draft a proposal for a stimulus plan to the city council which infuses cash into the economically depressed area, which would allow residents to walk around with full wallets & purses, and in turn, fund the criminal element which would then “stimulate” the local consumer economy. Money in, money out. Desperate times call for gummamint intervention. Calling Mr. Obama!

In Lufkin, Texas [Southeast Texas]
Terrance Williams, 28, was smoking marijuana while gassing up a car that had been reported stolen, the police report stated. Officers arrested Williams for possession of marijuana, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and failure to identify. Previous tete-a-tete with Lufkin's finest includes public intoxication & evading arrest while driving while intoxicated.

Stolen vehicle, check. Marijuana joint lit, check. Out in broad daylight putting gas in the stolen car at a highly-trafficked gas station right in front of the big Wal-Mart, check. Grassed up and gassed up, priceless. Dude! Where's my car?

In Waco, Texas [Central Texas]
A central Texas man held up another man at gunpoint, stealing his cell phone, jewelry and cash. The thief then ran away, taking off on foot. He proceeded to trip and fall, injuring his knee in the process. He then calls 9-1-1 using the STOLEN CELL PHONE. Police arrived and soon discovered that the cell phone, along with other property found on the man, had been stolen 20 minutes earlier.

The numbskull is being charged with armed robbery, three-counts of sheer stupidity and a referral to Life Alert ("Help, I've fallen and I can't get up!").

[Sources: KWTX.com, Texas Crime Blogger]

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Texas Three Kick Rule

A big-city, California, lawyer went duck hunting in rural Texas. He shot and dropped a bird, but it fell into a farmer's field on the other side of a fence. As the lawyer climbed over the fence, an elderly farmer drove up on his tractor and asked him what he was doing.

The litigator responded, "I shot a duck and it fell into this field, and now I'm going to retrieve it."

The old farmer replied, "This is my property, and you are not coming over here."

The indignant lawyer said, "I am one of the best trial attorneys in the U.S. and, if you don't let me get that duck, I'll sue you and take everything you own."

The old farmer smiled and said, "Apparently, you don't know how we do things in Texas. We settle small disagreements like this with the Texas Three-Kick Rule."

The lawyer asked, "What is the Texas Three-Kick Rule?"

The farmer replied, "Well, first I kick you three times and then you kick me three times, and so on, back and forth, until someone gives up."

The attorney quickly thought about the proposed contest and decided that he could easily take the farmer and agreed to abide by the local custom.

The old farmer slowly climbed down from the tractor and walked up to the city feller. His first kick planted the toe of his heavy work boot into the lawyer's groin and dropped him to his knees. His second kick nearly wiped the man's nose off his face. The barrister was flat on his belly when the farmer's third kick to a kidney nearly caused him to give up. But the lawyer summoned every bit of his will and managed to get to his feet and said, "Okay, you old coot! Now, it's my turn!"

The old farmer smiled and said, "Nope, I give up. You can have the duck."

Remember, folks. That's why many Texans are fond of wearing their cowboy boots. You know, just in case there's a small dispute of some kind that needs to be resolved expeditiously. Call it - Dispute Resolution, Texas-Style . That's why everyone's friendly in Texas, if you catch my drift.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

I've Been Everywhere, Man (Texas-Style)

Some Texas Sayings, Part 1

What we got right here is a few sayings from the Lone Star State. They're heard elsewhere too, I'm sure, but Texas perfected 'em. Enjoy!

He's riding a gravy train with biscuit wheels
     (ie, A very lucky person)

Big as all hell and half of Texas
    (ie, Texas size, aka Really Big!)

All hat and no cattle
    (A big talker, pretentious)

Do wut? – This is the standard response if you weren't paying attention or didn't hear what the speaker said for some reason. In other cultures the way this is often expressed is "Excuse me?" or "Pardon me?" or even "Could you please repeat that?" Sometimes this phrase is expanded to "Do wut now?" if there's a matter of urgency.

Hitched but not churched – This is a way of politely saying that a couple is living together without being married. Being that Texas is the buckle in the Bible Belt, living in sin was a taboo, but not much anymore as the times caught up with Texas, sadly.

Tea – Tea in Texas is always iced and always sweet. If you want unsweetened tea you need to specifically ask for unsweetened. Being that people are accustomed to drinking tea, you might get a "Do wut?" and a strange look. But hold your ground with a smile and you'll get your unsweetened tea. If you have never had Southern sweet tea you may want to try a small taste before ordering a whole glass. Let's just say it is sort of like drinking cake icing! Diabetic shock is not an uncommon reaction.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Texas Transformer: The Armadillo

The Texas Varmint with a bendable shell is the Armadillo, a Spanish word meaning “little armored one”. The Aztecs called them azotochtli, which stands for “turtle-rabbit.” But, to some, these little critters are seen as armored rodents or skunks on a half shell. Whatever they are, these husked mammals can be found out in the Chihuahuan Desert out if West Texas, usually as road kill given the lumberous luggage they have to haul on their backs.

The bony plates cover the back, head, legs, and tail. The armadillo's shell is made of true bone that cover their backs. Most armadillos also have bony rings or plates that protect their tails. Because their backs are covered with bone, armadillos are not very flexible (pretty much like any Texas Democrat - an oxymoron in itself - that you might chance upon in Austin).

Armadillos are one of the few animals who consume fire ants as part of their diet. Like Texans, they like their cuisine a little on the hot side.

info (sans commentary) courtesy of animals.nationalgeographic

Tuck & Roll

ARMADILLO ROLL-UP: These photos show how an armadillo escapes predators.
(1) The armored mammal figures out if it can run away. If that won't work, it must do something else.
(2) The armadillo tucks its head and legs into its shell.
(3) The armadillo moves its tail next to its head.
(4) Once the animal is rolled up, there's no flesh left for predators to bite!

Photos © Mark Payne-Gill, naturepl.com
© 2005 National Geographic Society. All rights reserved.

Here's a little video I came across on YouTube.

And, in case you find the urge to have a little taste of these encased turtles, then here's a recipe I found on the internet that you might be willing to try:

Chufo's Armadillo Hot Off the Asphalt Chops

1 Armadillo (large)
1/2 cup Vinegar
2 cups Water
1 tb Salt

1 tb. pepper
1 Walla Walla Sweet onion sliced 
1 lb. Smoked pork sausage (Cut into bite size pieces)
4  Stalks celery, chopped
1 lg red bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 quart can mushroom steak sauce
4 tb. Worcestershire sauce
1 Parsley, chopped
1 Green onions, chopped
1 Lemon

Armadillo is cleaned similarly to turtle.  Clean and cut into serving
pieces. Marinate the meat in a sauce made by combining vinegar,

water, salt and onion.  Marinate for 24 hours.  Drain meat and
place in a glass container.  Pour 1 quart of Worcestershire sauce
over meat and let it stand for 6 to 8 hours in refrigerator.  Remove
meat and let drain for 1 hour.

Place oil in black iron pot brown sausage and armadillo.  Remove
armadillo, but leave sausage in the pot.  Add onion, celery, bell
pepper, garlic and saute with sausage until vegetables are tender.
Add the steak sauce, Worcestershire, salt, pepper. Stir until well

mixed.  Put armadillo meat back into pot. Add enough water to
cover meat. Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer covered
for one hour. Sprinkle parsley and onion tops and lay thin lemon
slices on top. Simmer without cover for 10 to 15 minutes.
Serve over rice.

WARNING: Armadillos are one of the very few mammals that harbor the bacteria that causes leprosy. Usually, the disease's first sign of infection shows up as an unusual lumpy skin lesion. Buyer beware!

The 'Dillos are a little tough, but the meat under their belly is tender. And, they don't taste like chicken; they taste like armadillo.

Bon apetit!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Pecos Bill Rides a Tornado

Surely you’ve heard tell of Pecos Bill. He was a cowboy down in Texas. He was about the bravest cowboy that ever lived. Once, Bill used two rattlesnakes as a lasso. And then there was the time Bill shot all the stars out of the sky—all of ’em except the Lone Star, that is.

Now everyone in the West knows that Pecos Bill could ride anything. No bronco could throw him. No sir!

So here's one about the time he rode a tornado. You see, there wasn’t a horse in the world that was too wild, too big, too fast, too strong or too ornery for him. So it’s not surprising that one day, Bill decided he wanted to ride a tornado—and not just any tornado. No, sir. Bill waited for the biggest, the mightiest, the most terrifying tornado ever born from the clouds. It was so big that folks on the moon could see it swirling. It sucked up elephants from Africa and whales from the Pacific Ocean. But that didn’t scare Bill. He just reached up and grabbed that tornado out of the sky. He threw it down to the ground and hopped right on.

That tornado whirled and swirled and wiggled and wagged and whip-sawed like an alligator with its tail on fire. Bill hung right on. This here tornado tied the rivers into knots, flattened all the forests so bad they had to rename one place the Flat-Bottomed Plains. It sucked up Lake Michigan and dumped the water into the Grand Canyon. Bill hung right on. At last, that tornado got tired. It stopped its whirling, and Bill fell off. He fell so hard that the ground sank. Folks now call that spot Death Valley.

Anyway, that's how rodeos got started. Though most cowboys stick to broncos these days.

by S.E. Schlosser