December 17, 2018

That Really Bunches My Panties . . . by Brendon Marks

I read once that you shouldn’t make your work environment too much like home, or you may not want to leave and therefore become dull by falling prey to the ‘all work and no play’ syndrome. Many occupations (like coal miner, hog farmer, or honey wagon operator) rarely worry about this situation, but office workers must ever be on their guard. I’m an early riser and usually was the first to arrive at work. While wandering the halls one morning it occurred to me that cubicle content says a lot about the occupant. I use to work for a major…

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That Really Bunches My Panties . . . by Brendon Marks

Whenever two or more runners get together to chat, invariably the subject of chip timing comes up. It’s the rare runner who is ambivalent about the subject. You’re either for it or you’re against it, and usually with great passion. For those folks who don’t know what chip timing is, I’ll explain. For those folks who don’t care, bear with me and you may change your mind. You buy or borrow a chip that’s about the size of a quarter that is associated with a unique serial number, fasten it to your shoe, stuff in your sock, or duct tape…

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That Really Bunches My Panties . . . by Brendon Marks

A friend rides a bicycle for exercise. Without making any remarks about his level of wimpiness or about his sitting on a pipe and pedaling like heck just to give his butt a ride, I’ll relate the reason for bringing this up. He was telling me about a runner in his neighborhood who was out every day, knees bandaged, and in obvious pain, sometimes only shuffling along to complete his regimen. He was so impressed by the determination of this runner that he admitted that it was the only time that he doesn’t berate the runner for using the street…

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That Really Bunches My Panties by Brendon Marks

For the last few years, I’ve always been involved in one building project or another. A friend remarked, “You’re going to die with a tool belt on.” I was a little concerned about that because he’s a Baptist minister and I was afraid that he might have some inside information. Like maybe he’s seen a list or something, but whatever will be, will be. It occurred to me that virtually every project that I start has one common factor. It always begins with my hands wrapped around the handle of a shovel. Even the very first job I had as…

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That Really Bunches My Panties by Brendon Marks

It’s common knowledge that running takes off body fat like a knife. But running is not for everyone. Some people fall into one of the “terrible too’s”: “Too old,” “too wimpy,” “too decrepit,” and have to find an alternative.  Biking appears to have gained some followers in recent years. For those contemplating a venture into that exercise arena; I have taken the liberty of doing some research. Making the observation that most bike riders are skinny would lead one to believe that bike riding makes one skinny.  Maybe it does, but there are other factors to consider. The design of…

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That Really Bunches My Panties by Brendon Marks

As I waited my turn at the counter in the bowling alley, I casually watched a young guy behind the counter spray something into each one of the collection of rental shoes that had been returned by previous bowlers. I thought, ‘It’s good they do that. No tellin’ what sort of feet have been in those shoes.’ Then it occurred to me that I really didn’t know what the spray was. It could be a disinfectant or it could be only a deodorant or even just compressed air like you use to blast the toast crumbs out of your computer…

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The Barely Mobile Homes

The next time you come up behind one of those lumbering giants called an RV on the road between Wickenburg and Wikieup here are some things to think about as you crawl along, waiting for the next passing zone. Did you ever notice that you never catch up to one when the road is straight and flat? It’s always when the road is so steep and crooked that you can almost read your own back license plate, and the passing zones contain only two dashes. You creep up, trying not to think about dodging the avalanche of aluminum folding chairs…

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Lawn Maintenance

This chapter in my “How-to” book discusses the establishment and maintenance of a traditional lawn. Assuming that you’re starting from nothing, establishing a new lawn is a monumental task. Just mentioning the fact in casual conversation with your friends will cause them to scatter like a covey of quail, especially those that own a pick-up truck or trailer. The fact that you are considering a lawn is proof that you’ve never done it before, and therefore, have no idea what you’re doing. This is a deadly combination, and no amount of free beer will overcome the handicap. For the purpose…

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A Holiday Survivor by Brendon Marks

Well, I survived another holiday shopping season. Each year I am more convinced than ever that it will be my last. Somehow, some way, I am sure that I will die of an overdose of holiday-ness. As each year passes, the odds increase dramatically, and yet I take no special joy in the fact I may be proven correct. When a man wakes up on December 15th it is comparable to waking up in the center of a minefield with a 300-foot radius. He has two chances of escaping without suffering death or bodily injury. slim and none. In the…

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What’s In A Name? – Evidently Everything! by Brendon Marks

West Side Story

I saw a recent newspaper headline that blared, “Cardinals Come From Behind to Beat Eagles.” I just had to investigate, because with my admittedly limited knowledge of birds, even if the cardinals did attack from behind, I would have put my money on the eagles. Then I realized the headline was referring to a football game. Why do we have to name our sports teams? I realize that being called the Phoenix or Philadelphia Footballers might not have much popular appeal, but why the Cardinals? Or for that matter, why the Eagles–or anything? Even though there are cardinals and diamondbacks…

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So You Think You’re Handy . . . by Brendon Marks

Sooner or later every homeowner is faced with the choice of attempting their own repairs, hiring a professional, replacing whatever is broken, or moving. Let me help you decide. A large part of the decision has to do with money. It is usually based on how willing the homeowner is to part with it, not so much on whether it is available. The next most important factor is tools. Skill level increases dramatically when you use the correct tool and success rate drops rapidly when you improvise (not everyone can solder a copper pipe using a Bic lighter and a…

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That Really Bunches My Panties by Brendon Marks

  I recently received an email from my niece relating how the spiders took over her condo while she was away. The final straw was when she discovered (with her face) a spider web across the door between her condo and garage. Regardless of how you feel about spiders and their chance for survival, in this instance, you have to admire their resourcefulness. Even though my niece is petite, had they been successful, they would have had enough for three square meals a day for a year. This made me think about bugs in general. Despite all of our insecticides,…

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