Columns

Thu
14
Jan
atodd's picture

A New Year’s mourning muse

Well, well... the first day of another new year, my 65th, but who’s counting. Thanks to coffee and a one-and-done drink/in-bed-by- nine celebration last night, I greet the New Year wide-eyed and bushytailed. I write this by fire- light, swallowed in the gullet of an overstuffed Lazy Boy that reminds me of long ago times in Grandma’s lap at church, my head buried in the cleavage of her great bosom, a choir singing, “How Great Thou Art.”
In this morning’s darkness a similar warmth exudes from a natural gas hearth... its artificial embers glowing neon orange and blue flames licking noncombustible logs. I’m wondering around on paper here, whether to write anoth- er chapter in the same old book or start a new one? On a day symbolic of promise and oppor- tunity, maybe I’ll live with the ten pounds gained over “The Holidays” and resolve instead to change directions, maybe shake things up a bit. I mention this to Bobbie, already on her fourth “Challenger” Sudoku Puzzle.

Thu
14
Jan
atodd's picture

Chances are goo that...

Does your chance to win the $1.5 gajillion Powerball increase with every ticket you buy with a new set of numbers?
According to the Powerball website, winning the grand prize and assuring yourself of becoming everyone's favorite aunt or uncle is one in 292,201,338.
Frankly, I don't understand the math. I have recently read "experts" tell it both ways. One camp says each ticket holds the astronomical odds of one in 292 million, and no matter how many different sets of numbers you have, those odds don't change per ticket.
Other "experts" say with each ticket you buy with different numbers comes a division of the odds.
One of our readers who can balance a checkbook while chewing gum can probably tell me which theory is true.
All I know is if you don't buy a ticket, your chances are zip. If you buy one, your chances are…well...

Fri
13
Nov
atodd's picture

The saturation point

The Marijuana Industry Group, formed in 2010 to help promote Colorado's medical marijuana industry and patients, and which has since extended its promotion of all things to do with legal marijuana in our state, this week congratulated the City and County of Denver for extending a moratorium on new business licenses for two years.
Last one in shut the door.
MIG’s executive director, Michael Elliott, said that much to the glee of those businesses already operating in the industry in Denver and Denver County, that enough is enough — for now. "The marijuana industry has helped spark an economic boom in Denver," Elliott wrote, "but at this point it appears the number of businesses is in line with market demand."
In contrast to what Bob Dylan sang, evidently not everyone "must get stoned."

Fri
13
Nov
atodd's picture

Adventure begins at the end of comfort zones

Canyonlands, Utah — Needles District: Readers of this column should know by now, if it’s October, Bobbie and I are in Somewhere, Utah. Our initial camp was delightful and quiet, a back-road boondock on a hilltop mound of burgundy slick-rock. It afforded shimmering mirage-like panoramas of unfathomable canyons, improbably carved by water, wind and eons of time I struggle to comprehend.

Thu
22
Oct
atodd's picture

A wing and a haltere

To some people the best part of fall is the color. To a distiller the best part of fall is when the fruit flies go away. This has been a rough year for fruit flies and I am over them. It is well into the fall season and I am still battling the little buggers.

Thu
22
Oct
atodd's picture

The mysterious envelope

I can easily say of the never-ending task of cleaning the garage that it is, well, never-ending. But occasionally a surprise or two pops up.
The other day I was looking for my birth certificate. I tried all the usual places - you know, places where it should be but wouldn't be because those places would make too much sense.
File cabinet? Nope.
Sock drawer? It wouldn't be there, would it?
My box of stuff in the basement? Can't believe it wasn't there.
Oh, oh, oh. I know. In the trunk I've been carting around for years.
Let's see…an old pair of shorts that I evidently stole from some skinny guy years ago. A coin collection that I've never seen. Chinese coins? No telling where those came from.
There are my old concert ticket stubs. I saw Jethro Tull three times? I can only remember seeing them once, which is probably why I saw them three times.

Thu
01
Oct
atodd's picture

Blue suits me just fine

Beecher and I had been in a bit of a quandary recently. We couldn't figure out who gets to drive the Jeep home from Oktoberfest when we win it this year.
But, all's well. We now realize that we won't get to drive our new Jeep home Saturday night. We'll need to go fill out all sorts of paperwork at the Ouray Chamber a few days afterward. Then we can fight over - er, decide - who gets to drive the Jeep home.
Of course, my brother in Phoenix just texted me. He has a different plan. He says that when he wins the Jeep, we can drive it home and do our best to keep mice and such out of it. Then he'll come up in a few days, stay, fly fish, then take his new Jeep back to Phoenix. He tells me he'll look good in blue.

Thu
01
Oct
atodd's picture

Fall colors of the horse kind

Fall is in the air and the colors are just gorgeous. Did you know that the leaves are not the only colors changing as the weather gets colder? Four of my handsome “boys” are also working on a change of hue.
Yes, it’s true my horses change colors too. I have three buckskin and one liver chestnut colored hors- es. The buckskins, typically, change to a darker shade of tan. The white pieces that emerge during the “summer change” drop out and are replaced by an almost copper color. Their undercoat (winter hair) starts to appear about the same time that the aspens turn gold.

Thu
17
Sep
atodd's picture

A tale of two countries Columbus didn’t discover

Fact #1: When Columbus is reputed to have discovered America, the people we call Indians or Native Americans constituted 100% of the population of the Americas; today, they are a tiny minority accounting for just 1.68% of all Americans according to the 2010 U.S. Census.

Fact #2: Columbus didn’t discover America. Here’s what he “discovered”:

“During four separate trips that started with the one in 1492, Columbus landed on various Caribbean islands that are now the Bahamas as well as the island later called Hispaniola. He also explored the Central and South American coasts. But he didn’t reach North America, which, of course, was already inhabited by Native Americans, and he never thought he had found a new continent.” (Valerie Strauss, “Christopher Columbus,” The Washington Post, Oct. 14, 2013.)

Thu
17
Sep
atodd's picture

Meandering the pass

Looks like this trip to Durango will be close to three hours at this rate. Well, I have to go, work on the pass or no work on the pass. I need to help Michael (my son) get moved into his new place and get him set for the school year at Fort Lewis College.
This is something. I left Ouray at 11:30 a.m. and there are already 20 cars in front of me. The guy in front of me is from California. Wonder if he's fleeing the wildfires? Good luck there, the fires may be in California, but the smoke is here. I could barely see the Grand Mesa from my house this morning.
Lots of people in front of me out of their cars. Some walking their dogs. I guess I'll get out and walk mine. He loves car rides and actually hugs Michael when he sees him.
The guy from California is standing right on the edge of the road. I'm not so sure I'd get that close to the ledge.
I get Buster back in the car, give him some water. I get back in the car. He's happiest wherever I am.

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