Sensible shoos a better choice than bug zapperPublished 11:02am Tuesday, June 26, 2012
Echoes from the Loafers’ Club Meeting
“How do you want your eggs?”
“What difference does it make?”
“None to me.”
1. It takes me a while to realize that a parade has ended.
2. That lutefisk would be better if it were deep-fried.
3. That men know what clothing fits. What they don’t know is which clothes are dirty, wrinkled or wrong.
Today, most people counter the attack of hot weather with air conditioning. Back in the day, folks had to fight the heat in other ways.
My mother sang Christmas songs on scorching days. My father worked harder.
I tried both. I can’t say that either one worked, but singing was certainly the easiest.
I was at meeting. There were seven men sitting at my table. We were as rural as anyone is allowed to be. It was a meeting that caused people to check the time frequently. I’m not saying that it wasn’t an interesting meeting. It was just one that caused folks to think about the time. I noticed an odd thing on a hot day that brought shirt-sleeved men to the table — not one of the seven was wearing a wristwatch. These once-dedicated wristwatch watchers checked the cellphones they had holstered like a cowboy’s six-shooters whenever the meeting encouraged looking.
For no apparent reason, this reminded me of another meeting.
“Excuse me,” said the stranger. “Do you have a cigarette?”
I don’t smoke, so I replied in the negative. I didn’t add a “sorry” because I thought that I might be doing him a favor by helping him to cut back on his smoking.
“Oh, then here’s one for you,” he said as he offered me a pack of a generic brand of cigarettes. He laughed.
I remember being in a class when a physician came to talk to us about the dangers of smoking. He painted a scary picture of blackened lungs and agonizing deaths. He quoted someone who said, “Fire on one end, fool on the other.”
His talk would have been more effective had we not seen him light a cigarette before getting into his car.
Thrilling days of yesteryear
Junior high shop class was situated in a large room filled with demonic devices. A young man passed the class if he didn’t lose a finger while operating one of those satanic machines. No, that’s not right. A boy passed the class if he didn’t lose all his fingers.
“Do you own a bug zapper?” No. Countless studies have proven that they aren’t effective in attracting mosquitoes, let alone killing them. They kill many beneficial insects. I wave the mosquitoes away with my hand. I believe in sensible shoos.
“Why do woodpeckers peck on my house?” Woodpeckers hammer on houses for three reasons. To proclaim territory, to excavate a nest or roost hole, or to feed on insects living in the siding. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology tested six common deterrents. The methods tested were life-sized plastic owls, reflective streamers, plastic eyes on fishing line, roost boxes, suet feeders, and a sound system that broadcast woodpecker distress calls and hawk calls. Only the streamers worked consistently.