Al Batt: When someone holding a flyswatter says, ‘Don’t move!’

Published 4:22 pm Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Echoes from the Loafers’ Club Meeting

My wife is always correcting me.

I told her, “Judy, quit correcting me.”

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I thought your wife’s name was Andrea.

You’re as bad as she is.

Driving by Bruce’s drive

I have a wonderful neighbor named Bruce. Whenever I pass his drive, thoughts occur to me. It had been so dry, the catfish had been carrying canteens. It’s been a long time since I’ve engaged in a staring contest with a catfish, but I believe their eyes are black. According to the World Atlas, 70 to 79% of the world’s human population has brown eyes, 8 to 10% have blue, 5% each have hazel and amber, 3% gray, 2% green, under 1% red-violet and fewer than 1% have eyes of different colors. This is called heterochromia.

  “When the Weatherball is glowing red, warmer weather’s just ahead. When the Weatherball is shining white, colder weather is in sight. When the Weatherball is wearing green, no weather changes are foreseen. Colors blinking by night and day say, precipitation’s on the way.”

The Weatherball was a cultural icon perched atop the 14-story Northwestern National Bank in Minneapolis for 33 years and seen from 15 miles away at night. Unveiled in 1949, the Weatherball was hailed as the tallest lighted sign between Chicago and the West Coast with the sphere’s base 367 feet above the street and illuminated by 1¼ miles of neon tubing. The bank received a call from the National Weather Service at 4:14 p.m. each day to set the Weatherball color until 1977 when a direct line to the airport’s NWS allowed updating four times per day. The Northwestern National Bank building was destroyed by an arson fire on Thanksgiving Day 1982 started in an empty Donaldson’s Department Store. The Weatherball escaped unscathed and a crane lowered it gently onto the street. It was donated to the Minnesota State Fair with the hope it’d be restored and placed on the fairgrounds. It was stored for 17 years until it was scrapped.

I’ve learned

The shoe store clerk told me that a particular shoe wasn’t good for walking. I think all shoes should be good for walking.

A long-term weather forecast is fall, winter, spring and summer.

When someone holding a flyswatter says, “Don’t move!” Move.

Efforts to move Minneapolis and St. Paul to Austin and Albert Lea have stalled. It’d been wonderful for the people living in Austin and Albert Lea. If they wanted to go to the Twin Cities, they could just stay home.

Bad jokes department

He lost all his money investing in Henry Winkler action figures. It was a Fonzie scheme.

If Wonder Woman married Howard Hughes and then married Henry Kissinger, would she be Wonder Hughes Kissinger now?

What’s the difference between a weird rabbit and an athletic rabbit? One is a bit funny and the other is a fit bunny.

I learned on social media that 98% of people are stupid. I’m glad I’m part of the other 5%.

You’re getting older if

No one wants to talk to you in the morning until you’ve had your oatmeal.

Your spouse says you have two faults: you don’t listen and she/he can’t remember the other.

You don’t tell anyone if your knees ache because if you do, someone will ask if that means it’s going to rain.

Nature notes

A rabbit’s eyes are positioned high on its head. This lateral placement is common in prey animals. Rabbits can see behind, up, down, on both sides and ahead. Rabbits have monocular vision and can see two different objects at one time since their eyes point in two directions. They can see predators at impressive distances.

Common nighthawks roamed the sky over the yard, making sounds of a warm summer evening as they headed to their wintering grounds in southern South America.

Native to Asia, weeping willow trees get their common name from how rain looks like tears dripping off the curved branches. The roots often lie close to the soil surface, causing bumps in the lawn, which interferes with mowing and can lift cement patios. Weeping willow tree roots can also damage underground water, sewer and plumbing lines.

Opossums arrived in southeastern Minnesota sometime around 1900. They aren’t equipped for cold winters as their fur coats aren’t warm, and their thin ears and hairless tails make opossums vulnerable to frostbite. They don’t hibernate.

Meeting adjourned

Happy anniversary to the love of my life, my wife.

“If you can’t think of anything nice to say, you are not thinking hard enough.”—Robby Novak.