• 16°

Humidity changes the air

Echoes from the Loafers’ Club meeting

“You’re late.”

“You’re lucky I made it to work at all.”

“Why is that?”

“I wanted to stay home.”

Driving by the Bruces

I have two wonderful neighbors–both named Bruce–who live across the road from each other. Whenever I pass their driveways, thoughts occur to me, such as: To err is human. The secret is to do it in front of as few people as possible.

Three things I have learned

1. You will never have the best lawn.

2. Manners count.

3. Never celebrate on the 10-yard line.

Applied logic

Jim Carpenter, President and CEO of Wild Birds Unlimited, told me that he is a runner. He said that it took him twice as long to finish a half-marathon as it did the winner. Jim added that meant that he is in much better shape than the winner because he could run twice as long in the same distance.

A lucky man

My lovely wife told a friend of hers a secret to a long and happy marriage. My bride said, “On my wedding day, I decided to choose 10 of my husband’s faults, which I would overlook.”

Her friend asked my wife to name some of those faults.

My better half replied, “I never did list them; but whenever Al does something that makes me mad, I say to myself,

‘It’s lucky for him that is one of the 10.’”

From those thrilling days of yesteryear

My father was a dairy farmer and a magician. He could wave his hands at the cows and turn them into a pasture.


It was my pleasure to tell stories and lead a nature walk at the Chautauqua in Waseca. As I visited with friends gathered there, the discussion turned to corn. It does that often. We agreed that one of the big changes in our lifetime is that the corn that once needed to be knee-high by the 4th of July to provide a good crop now is waist-high, shoulder-high, or head-high by the 4th of July.

The curfew

When I turned 18, I told my father that I should be able to stay out as late as I wanted. My father agreed. He told me that as long as I made it home in time to milk the cows in the morning, he was OK with it. He added that because the car was only 11 years old, it still needed to be home by midnight.

Chocolate pudding

I don’t eat chocolate of any kind. When I was in high school, I found the chocolate pudding I received as part of the lunch program particularly repulsive. I love pudding as long as it is not chocolate. It seemed to me that the chocolate pudding showed up on my tray far more often than the lemon pudding I liked. One day, I dumped the uneaten chocolate pudding into the garbage and said just loud enough for everyone to hear, “This time, stay in there.”

Three things I am thankful for

1. My ears still work. I can listen.

2. Volunteers.

3. When all else fails, I can stop using all else.

In the aftermath

Good things happened around home after the tornadoes.

Paul Lynne found his dog that had been lost for seven days. It had lost some weight on the Get Lost For Seven Days Diet, but appeared to be in fine fettle otherwise.

Mike Brekke found a $50 bill in his field after the tornado. Mike is a good guy and I’m sure he would be willing to return it to anyone who could provide the bill’s serial number.

Nature notes

“It smells like rain.”

Weather can be scary, but rain clouds bring the smells of the heavens. There is a fresh, sweet smell in the air before a rainfall. Once upon a time, it was believed that rain clouds picked up the sweet smells of heaven and the rain carried the angelic odors to earth. I have heard often that the smell comes from the ozone brought down by the rain. In fact, the smell rises. Moist air is better than dry air at transmitting smells. As the humidity increases, the moist air carries the aroma of oils, fungi, and bacteria from the ground to your nose. When a rainstorm approaches, the humidity climbs. These scents ascend and it smells like rain.

Talking to the Holstein

I was talking to the Holstein the other day. The Holstein is a retired milk cow, so she has time to talk. The Holstein chewed her cud thoughtfully and said, “I’m getting older. It’s much easier getting older than it is getting wiser.”