Pulling Her Leg

“Well. Well.Well.” I said and waited for some sort of response, while Lola looked wistfully out of the window wondering why the fall in temperature, was making me say, “Well.Well.Well?”

“Let’s not blame the temperature, at least not while we are sitting here, fully clothed as one of us is about to brighten up the day, as if, as if…Dang! I might have been able to fit a metaphor in right there!”

Lola just replied. “Funny how you men think you always have what it takes, when we all know how difficult it is for most, to fit the bill!”

I pondered her words a bit, while I set up a rather largish screen, then putting popcorn in the pan, and the Tundra Tea ready for…

“Ready for what?” she asked seeing as how I failed to complete that last paragraph, now being trapped in my net of suspense and intrigue!

“Well, pictures of our trip to Moose Pass! Here in the comfort of your own home, on the biggest screen, this side of, well not maybe it isn’t that big but showing the finer points of our trip. Get ready for the first photo, and tell me where you think it was taken?”

Mystery Photo number 1

“Well?” he asked as she stood up, and said,”That isn’t from our vacation, is it? Then looking closer saying, “I don’t even think it is in Alaska!”

“Gosh Lola. Now I know why we got together all those years ago! You are right on both counts, but can’t you see that the whitish rock on the top of this mountain peak is the Campito Formation? With fossils from the Cambrian located in the….

“-But why are you showing me photos of someplace other than our vacation, in a place that is, well. Someplace else?”

“Just a teaser, Lola. Just a teaser. Now let’s get to the main event, OK?”

Mystery Photo number 2

“Thar she blows! OK Lola. Now you can see this Stratovolcano which shows you that Mt Redoubt and the others in our area are just as pretty from the air, as from the ground. When we were up in that Hot-air balloon over Moose Pass, you said,” I…

“Is that really a Stratovolcano from Alaska?” Lola acknowledged that it was a Stratovolcano, but was it really….

“Well. Almost, but we really didn’t get up in that Hot-air balloon,now did we? You said,”No way, No how”, which made me say, “If only we had seen Mt Redoubt from the air, then Howie said…Well, Howie really didn’t say anything, but the look of disappointment on his face told me that, well. It told me that it was better to pull your leg a bit, than…. Well than..

“Are you ready for the next photo, my dear?”

Lola’s patience was wearing a bit thin, but after he pulled her leg, again, she said,”That was one of the things that attracted me to you in the first place: your sense of humor, but now you might notice that I am not laughing, am I?”

I took a good look at her face, but had to agree with her, she didn’t seem to be in the laughing-mood. Nope. No way. But wait, said suddenly as the popcorn began to pop on the stove, and the winds whistled wistfully outside their pleasant domicile. “Kind of like the winds around Mt Rainier in Washington”, he said to himself, before he quickly changed the photo to:

Mystery Photo Number 3

“Now we are getting somewhere”, said Lola as she recognized at once the photo with her, just having picked some flowers and, and. “Was this really on our vacation? It looks suspiciously like the one you use on our blog of…

“Lola. Lola. Lola.”

He said with his usual way attempting to soothe the wild beast in her, before she took violent action, once and for all!

“Are you telling me”, she started to say, but what with the popcorn popping and the Tundra Tea whistling, I felt it necessary to attend to those necessities, before having to face the music! So as I wandered into the kitchen, whistling a tune, faintly reminiscent of the ones that we’d used to sing while studying the Campito Formation in Geology 101 at Healy Junior College. I’d just tell myself back then, “Just think how someday, some woman will fall for a sap like me and my various and sundry knowledge of obscure geological formations, and tunes that resemble the whistling winds around Mt Rainier, with her saying,”

“If you pull my leg again, like you did before, then I’m sure that we can whistle beautiful music together.”

-and with that said, there was not a dry eye in the house, with just the silent munching of the cinnamon-flavored popcorn being eaten in the background, while

Lola just sat there, watching me as I wrote the ending to this blog, then having a good reach of my imagination, managed to pat myself on the back at having pulled off my grand deception, and subterfuge making her think that I really did possess photos of our vacation to Moose Pass, but after Howie ate the camera, then it fell in the river, and I didn’t have the heart (or the nerve) to tell Lola the truth, then I felt that….

-but that last thought never made it into print, as she reached over to me, taking the bowl of popcorn out of my hands, and made ready to kiss me….

-but punched me instead!

“-the next time you show a photo of me, it needs to be of my good side, Got it?….”


Lola’s Travels!

“Gosh Lola. I think the exclamation mark in the title really gives it credence, don’t you?”

“The title implies” began Lola, who knew that no matter what the title implied, the outcome would always be different! “The title implies that we, or more correctly, that I, travel about saving young animals from speeding cars and climbing tall mountains! I am the star of this show, and don’t you forget it!”

B. just let those words sink in as he sipped his Dark Roast Saskatchewan Brew. “Wow Lola. Just think of those times when anything Canadian was forbidden even to talk about in our house, and now we are drinking Canadian Coffee!”

“And just who was it that was so Anti-Canadian, might I so rightly ask?” with Lola waiting for one of them to pick a fight, and that might as well be her!

“Well, as I remember it. We were discussing your home town, and I said, “Isn’t it dangerously close to the Canadian Border?” prompting you to say, “It has always been on the right side of the border!” – walking over to the map of Alaska on the wall, then pointing to the right of the border, “See what is there, Why it is another Country, named Can, ah-“

“I know what it’s called, you Dolt! You have just misunderstood right from, well, right, You know?”

“All I know Lola is that Healy, that would be Healy Alaska and not the Healy Pass Trail in Banff National Park, was that it wasn’t even close to Can-uh, – well you know that largish Country to the Right of ours? Which might have made my old Dad say, “I once knew a Canadian Girl, but that was long before I met your mother. She was, then he’d look wistfully away, as if to remember her golden hair glistening in the Canadian Springtime, where the black rabbits ran and frolicked about, while they-

“Are you certain your father was remembering a girl from his dim past, and not just those next-door neighbors, who your mother used to make the Sign of the Penguin about, whenever you asked how things were going with Mr and Ms Banff from points unknown?”

“Lola. If I thought my father was ever going to be unfaithful to my mother, do you think he would be so silly as to take up with the woman next door?”

“All I know is that we are halfway through this blog without having realized the title at all! We should be exercising our right as the Title-Holders of this Rag to show the rest of the world, why Alaska deserves its place on a map of the world!”

B. started to stretch by attempting to touch his toes, then pulled out his one puny muscle, and tried once again to open that stubborn mayonnaise jar, but just collapsing on the kitchen floor, out of breath with a wild look in his eyes!

“Just what do you think you are doing?” asked Lola wondering if Mouth-to-Mouth was necessary, or should she just wait until the Vision White Rabbits carried him off to their Hutch in the Clouds?”

“Do you think this one is a Keeper?” said the one Vision Rabbit to the other. “He might have been an asset to our Gaggle, why just look at that one puny muscle!”

“Rabbits” began Lola looking at the pitiful state of affairs lying on the linoleum floor, “Rabbits are not in Gaggles! Those are Geese!”

Armand poked his head into the blog, even though Lola thought it to be completely out of character for him, but then who was in charge here anyway?

“B., Lola. Rabbits are grouped in Fluffles, or Colonies, but I prefer them to be in Fluffles, which is a delicious word, don’t you think so too, B.?”

B. just lie there, looking up at Armand, Lola and the two Vision Rabbits, who decided to take a non-smoke off to one side. “What do you think about these Romerolagus diazis? the one Rabbit said to the other. “I’d light mine, but seeing as how they are endangered, I’d be the last one to hop down that road, if you know what I mean?” while they disappeared in a puff of smoke, that Armand hoped didn’t color his prospects with the man lying on the floor in front of him!

“All right” said Lola, well-knowing that this blog was just about over and done with, so she decided to open a bottle of Edmonton Chablis and shoot the breeze, as it were with Armand, while Mr Puny Muscle decided if it were prudent to stand up again, or should the blog just run out leaving him in peace?

So Armand says, “We, that is myself and the constant companion of my youth, had just reached the top of Healy Pass, that’s in Alberta you might know? When out of the underbrush hopped 2 of the cutest black rabbits this side of Mount Meager in British Columbia – that is a volcano, you might know and…..”

Lola just poured herself another glass of Chablis, while Armand rambled on about this and that, with her wondering if it was worth it, on an other occasion, to attempt the title of the blog once again, or was it a lost cause?

“It’s happening now! I feel it!” yelled the man who wanted to be the Strong Man of Healy. That would be Healy, Alaska, but relying on his one puny muscle to take the trophy and receive a kiss from Miss I’ll Bet-A, was just about to lose its muscle tone, leaving him back on the floor, considering the interesting crack in the ceiling, wondering if that happened the last time Mount Meager erupted back in……

Her Charm and Intelligence

“Monkeys Lola!”

“Listen you, we’ve already been down this jungle path before. We don’t need anymore monkeys in this blog, ostensibly about Alaska.”

“Gosh Lola. Sometimes it sounds to me as if you doubt the intentions of this blog? Why just one year and 500 posts ago, there was a man and a woman. Her firearms meant more to her than….Did you stop listening to me, or what?” asked the man whose only goal in life was to be a Monkey Tamer at the Petting Zoo in Homer, Alaska.

“I’ve told you before, haven’t I, that monkeys don’t belong in a Petting Zoo!” A part of her did though long for the Circus Life again. Traveling from city to town, meeting new people along the way, and never admitting to needing/wanting a sedentary lifestyle, one that was out in the sticks of what some people called living “Off the Grid” in Alaska!

His eyes just followed her thoughts as she thought them, wondering when the time was right to mention monkeys again?

“Uh Lola” he said, while still existed, still lost in her thoughts, donning her Circus Costume, emblazoned with her name on the back, “Lolapalooza the Invincible!”

The circus tent was filling up as she peeked out of the curtains, wondering if her latest conquest, B. would be showing up for the 4pm performance?

“Peanuts. Get your peanuts here!” a curious vendor, a bit on the shortish side, sporting an obtuse handlebar mustache, wandered through the crowd as the other performers readied themselves for the show of shows, the act of acts!

When she looked up again, he sat there. Out of nowhere, surrounded by monkeys and, and – How did monkeys end up in this memory anyway?”

“Uh Lola” he said again, “If we just mentioned monkeys a bit more often, then changed the title to something more Monkey-Friendly, th-

Random visitors to this blog about Alaska

“Then he entered her life once again! She knew that he followed the movement of the circus, rerouting his business along the same circuit, as he sold his wares to Mr and Mrs Joe Alaska, somewhere in the backwater of what others called, uh, well, I think that…

“Why haven’t you mentioned monkeys in this thought sequence?”

“Look You! This is beginning to tick me off! Soon Mr Right will meet Ms Wrong and they will make beautiful Monkey-business together! So get off my case, OK?”

He hopped off the suitcase, and went outside to catch a non-smoke before the performance. If only he could convince her of his sincerity by finding another suitable photo of monkeys on Pixabay, before the Big Show was about to begin, he might just be able to whisk her off her feet and….

“Ladies and Gentlemen! Boys and Girls! Monkeys and Monkettes! May I have your attention please!”

The ringmaster, a rather shortish fellow with an enormous handlebar mustache, swept his arms around as if to encompass the whole of the Kenai Peninsula. Yes all of its 64,107 km2 !” – Lola whispered asking what that was in miles, but since Wikipedia was being stubborn today, she didn’t get the answer she deserved!-

“Feast your eyes upon the High-Wire directly over your heads!”

-voices in the crown murmured – Higher than most Alaskan monkeys could manage!-

Lola just looked down into the hopeful faces of the audience. If only she could make eye-contact with the man whose puny muscle was all the rage of the women that he met along the way, if only she could convince him that by traipsing about high over his head, while wearing her daring but charming costume, that he could fall for someone like her!”

“Gosh Lola. It’ll take the Monkey in me, but I’ll make that fall, if only we could be together, forever!”

-but that memory didn’t last, did it? Some things in life are like that, aren’t they?-

Then fate stepped in that day, when she was visiting the Petting Zoo in Homer Alaska. As she wandered past the donkeys, and the goats, she saw a fellow trying to coax a monkey out of his cage! “Come here little fellow. I won’t hurt you!”

Lola cried out, “Is that really you, or are my eyes deceiving me again?”

He just stood up, letting the monkey be, and starting walking towards the fence. He looked at her, and she him, but they both ended up shaking their heads saying “-

“Well! What were they saying, You Dolt?”

Lola held her costume in her hands, wondering if it still fit on those delicate places on her body, exactly where he held her, under the mirrored ball at the yearly dance at the Soldotna Grange Building, right next to the Kenai Mini-Market, with its weekend special, “Monkey Pictures to amaze and delight!”

He had just come outside while licking his ice cream cone, “The Lolapalooza” when they ran into one another, with her saying “Are you certain the 800-word mark is just about here? I can’t make heads nor monkey tails of this blog, and give me a lick of that ice cream cone, before I bean you!”…..

Thumbing the Alaskan Pipeline

In my early days of discovering Alaska, I used to ride the pipeline stretching those odd-800 miles from Prudhoe Bay to the ice-free Port of Valdez with nothing less than the thumb of my left foot to take me to places and faces unknown. I met a girl on one of those trips with hair that smelled of Light Crude Oil and rosy cheeks that glowed like the Steam towers of the Amine Gas Theater at the Oil Refinery at Kenai on the Kenai Peninsula.

My left foot had always been my lucky charm, and the thumb of that foot was the one that led me to the fame of the Amine Gas Theater, with a ticket to Glory in my right hand, while my left resided in that box of popcorn affectionately known as “Lola”. She was-

-“Just what was that hand “doing” in my box of popcorn, and are you really sure it “was” me on stage of the Amine Gas Treater, or have you just misspelled things to tell your tale of woe and passion in the fading moments of the Alaskan Winter?”

She tended to “doubt” our love, knowing that men like me, who knew women like her, would say just about anything at all to gain her favors and the chance to lick her candy corn, while lying in her bed in that little apartment next to the Refinery, that always smelled of Light Crude Oil with just a trace of Naphthalene!

“Was it my hair, my apartment or the Candy Corn that smelled of Naphthalene?” was one of the things, she used to ask me, while our passions were ignited to ……looking up some facts and figures in Wikipedia.…a temperature just under the boiling point of water which would-

“If you hadn’t gotten side-tracked somewhere on the Dalton Highway, this story “could have” covered the Hot Passion of an Alaskan Afternoon turned Night instead of wondering about how many different “Hydrocarbon Products” can be had from one barrel of oil!”

“Now get that thumb from your left foot out again, and get this story “back on track”!

I had paused in my trek, somewhere along the Dalton Highway, when I saw a young woman walking slowly through the multi-colored Lupines on the meadowed-floor of my memory. Her words were as sweet as the honey nectar that the Alaskan Bees had gathered, but I had been stung by those Devils more than once, let me tell you! She said, “I…

“You’ve gotten off track again, haven’t you? It was just beginning to sound like the first time that our paths might have “crossed”, but then you had to go and ruin it with that, that….

Her words flowed into my mind, not unlike the round about 500,000 barrels that flowed along the Alaskan Pipeline on a daily basis. “I’ve known Crude Men like you before, but none so well versed in the Art of thumbing with their left foot!”

“Have you ever really “thumbed it” with your left foot, or did you really use your upper body hands instead?” she asked me as if I didn’t know up from down, but then what is an appendage anyway?

Perhaps, she had been riding Steer when she came upon that Great Beast named The Trans-Alaskan Pipeline System? She ran her hands along its 48 inch diameter and could almost feel the surge of the ghost of those 16 billion barrels of raw crude that have passed by her, as she waited for a man such as myself to lasso her heart and her…….but I digress, don’t I? This was a tale of one woman’s plight, and one man’s duty to maintain the bolts on that surging pipe while she used to…

“Blah-blah-blah!” repeated Lola having just shoveled out the blog after the last paragraph of Penguin Poop! “The problem here is attributed to a delay in finishing this “work of artistic excellence” and trying to pick up the pieces over 12-hours later, when inspiration consisted of a cheese sandwich and a cold compress, in order to sort out the muddled mess that started when Wikipedia purported to know more about Alaska, than you did yourself!”

He was temporary distracted with adding up how many times Alaska had been mentioned until this point in the blog, but suddenly had to answer the Love of his Life, with something less than an inspired answer, which he turned around into a compliment, hoping against hope to stem the tide of her frothing anger?

“Gosh Lola. I’ve learned more about our Home State with this blog than the ones with the Conoco-Phillips Building in beautiful downtown Anchorage, and that is with one thumb tied behind my back!”

Lola just looked at him hoping that the next blog would be more inspired than this one, but not everything is possible in this really real life, now is it?

“Well, it’s been a real struggle, but we’ve crossed over the 800-word mark without our Tennis Shoes steaming like Mt Redoubt Stratovolcano, or what say you, My Dear?”

“I” managed Lola to utter, before the 800-word committee began rolling up the edges of this blog, readying it for publication sometime in the future!

“At least you got the last word in edgewise” he said, as his face rolled under the next curve, as the blog was put in the Drafts File until later use……

One Sweaty Hand’s Day at Tern Lake Junction

I’ll never forget that day, if I get to be one day older than today, or at least the day that I met her, in the freezing weather of early September.

I just stood there, trying to warm my freezing hands, while the cars raced on by me on Highway 1, while I considered Highway 9, or one of its brothers, who didn’t live in that part of Alaska, but

“Are you just looking over the map of Alaska, trying to remember where we first met one another, but end up wallowing in a pool of self-pity and despair?”

-but their father had told them, “Boys, Someday a woman will come along and show you the correct highway to take!” and with Dad’s words in my head, I set off that one sunny morning in September, after I had shoveled the walk for snow, and patted my doggie on his head saying, “Someday, Rover. I will return to Healy, Alaska, with the woman that I love! and he just wagged his little tail, then stopped to lick himself, but we don’t need all of those details, do we?”

Well, the women that I had met along the way, relieved me of my nickles, but failed to make the proper change, leaving me alone, and not even penniless along that lonely stretch of road near Tern Lake on the Kenai Peninsula. If I had a quarter to my name, I might just call the telephone operator, just to pass the time of day and reminisce with her about the good old days before anti-trust lawsuits against AT&T, wasn’t breaking up that old gang of mine! She might just whisper in my ear that we could meet in person and talk about those old times, but she didn’t want her father The Regional Bell Operating Company to get wind of our proposed meeting saying that we could meet at her favorite phone booth at Tern Lake Junction!

That fateful meeting finally came when I walked up to that phone booth and picked up the receiver, waiting to hear her voice again. She….

“Are you certain that this particular memory concerns me?” asked by a woman, who could have told me year’s ago, where she was hiding that “special” tattoo with the AT&T symbol on her very personal person, but what I, after many fruitless searches, still hadn’t located, wanting only to place a GPS marker, helping me to find my way back to her again!

When I picked up the telephone receiver, the only words from her sweet lips were, “Beep, beep, beep” which told me that she was not available at that moment in time, and I would not be receiving my money back at this time! That caused me to wait outside that very phone booth, at the junction of Highway 1 and Highway 9, wondering if our long-awaited love was finally about to become reality?!

A Willie’s Jeep suddenly pulled over to the side of the road, close to where I stood, with a woman stepping out and asking, “Hey You!” which made me look about as if there might be someone else nearby?

I said, “You! Wearing that Goofy Look on your face, while you are freezing to death in the snow, next to that phone booth that hasn’t worked in years!”

That woman had been reading my blog, or something like it? How else would she know of my need for female companionship in her loving arms and….

“I wasn’t in need of Companionship!” she told me, as she cleaned the barrel of her 30-30 Winchester, while I noted AT&T’s logo burned into the gun barrel as if to say, to say…

I felt as if my life had come full circle! I rushed home to my folk’s place in Healy… Alaska and looked for my doggie and his wagging tail!

“Sorry son”, my father said. “Your doggie is not here any longer!”

Oh how I cried, knowing how he must have felt, when his owner had left him! Being lost and alone in Healy Alaska, with nary a friend in the world when, when

“Gosh Lola. How in the world, am I going to finish this story? I’ve painted myself into a corner, as it was, with my dog having run away from home, and you turning into that Telephone Operator, while I still hadn’t found her/your AT&T Tattoo on her/your body!”

And as God is my witness, I’d leave on a new trip today, if I could start a search like that again…..

and again….

Tag! You’re It!

“Lola. Listen closely to me, because what I am about to tell you, most certainly change your life forever…… listening?”

Lola sat passively and perused the latest edition of “How to make a success of blogging, by not posting any blogs!”

“It says here” she said, ignoring his earth-shattering news, “That by commenting on other sites, you will draw your followers closer to the heart of your own blog, where they will stab you right in the…..reading…..Nope! Wrong piece of literature! Nothing at all for the likes of us!”

“Uh Lola” he began again, but wasn’t much for others interrupting his train of thought before it crashed into the station, and, and….now how did that idiom go again?”

Lola put down her thoughts, at least the ones she imagined to be hers, while B. told of his own thoughts, that he imagined to be his as well.

“Monkeys Lola! They are just one example of how-

“Look you. Haven’t we heard enough of those monkeys? Why don’t you announce the end of this blog, thus allowing us to reap the “Awww” factor, and while they are lamenting our demise, we can return to our real lives in Alaska, thank you very much!”

“Just ponder these words: depression, life, longing, love, poem, romance, monkeys, writing, art, doodle, fiction…I could go on and on, but those seem to be the most important tags of those bloggers who are hitting it big in the small world of blogging!”

Lola looked at his list and was about to comment on them when she said, “Why do those monkeys keep on showing up?”

“Because my love. Monkeys, cooking, travel and coffee are hot topics right off the stove! If we just use some, or all of them, instead of none of them, or the ones we usually do, but don’t, then just think how far we can propel this blog into the near future! Perhaps even into tomorrow?”

Lola just shook her head, before choosing her words wisely. “You know, it is not enough just writing those tags in the Editor? Your story/blog has to be about them/concerned with them! You won’t get anywhere just listing them like that!”

“Then how do others do it? I’ve read many a blog, like those about “Proper Cabbage Weeding in Alaska” where those bloggers have written, Love, Lust and Tied to a Chair! Gosh Lola. The next time I’m out weeding our cabbages, and come in with my body glistening in sweat, what if you try to….

-shaking her head – “Listen you. This blog is not going to be allowed out of our imaginations, until you incorporate all of those tags into it, capisci ?”

“Gosh Lola. I get all ooky inside when you talk dirty to me like that! We can put that in as a tag as well….?”

“Honestly Lola. I was feeling a bit depressed the other day, what with lacking the funds to travel and find romance, with the only thing left being my lust for dark-roasted coffee and a side of the most tasty, sugary, frosting-covered cake this side of Soldotna! I thought if I could write an award-winning poem about doodles and daddles, then the book world would beat a path to my door! You asked if I had wanted anything else in life, but I just said, “Oh you mean, other than monkeys, longing and being tied to a chair?”Well, you took the rope and as you considered which knots would be the best to use, I took a hold of your cabbages, which I proceeded to-

“What do you mean by you took a hold of my cabbages? Is that some sort of Double Entendre again?” asking innocently as I pulled out something that made her squeal in delight!”

writing additional tags – squeal, in delight,

“Then she-

“What exactly did you pull out that made me “squeal in delight?” asking while she wondered if he meant that?, or was it when he, I mean he didn’t exactly, but then when I insisted, literally demanding that he, well he.

writing fervently as Lola reminisced about that time, when he, he…-

“I feel” Lola started to say, while she continued with “I feel, but not with my hands, and not during that time, that you might have been referring to and – Stop writing those tags! Won’t you!”

“Gosh Lola. I just write tags like we say them! If our readers want to get the wrong impression about them, then it is their own thoughts that have led them astray, not ours!”

Lola felt that last statement deserved a degree of merit, but giving in to his way of thinking might just jinx her chances for resuming a normal blog life, that would again award them with the ISBN-rating!

Lying back on his back, he waited until the blogs took a hold of his followers and reaped him the benefit of the doubt for all of his labors up to now!

“We could always just trash this blog and get by on our good-looks and brawn alone?” he said, while Lola reached over, ready to press the “publish button!”

Ready or not……Tag Me Baby!

“Fat chance of that Mr Puny Muscle….Blogs Away…..!”

What is Your Honest Opinion?

“Oh my!” said Armand as he hung on each and every word of the latest tale of Love in Alaska, going on between his two most favorite people! Well, all right, at least his one most favorite person!

“Did she really ask you that question, or are we just hearing your delicious sense of humor once again?” Armand knew that B. was a tasty dish, but too many calories did spoil the man, didn’t they?

B. just sat there, staring into his drink while the others gathered around him, patting him on the back and saying, “There, There!”

“It had to happen sooner or later Bro” said Barney the Vision Moose as he and Tristan sat at a corner table, quaffing a few suds before heading off to points unseen. “Hey Tris. Whatever happened to that Cow you met from Quebec? Did she ask you something similar, or did you just, well, you know?”

“Oh, you mean Moosette? Hey Man. We were just on two entirely different wavelengths that’s all. She really only liked two things: Chocolate, and well, you know?”

Barney blew the suds off of his beer and said, “I used to, but as the years go by, I tend to forget……luckily for me!”

“-But why did she ask you that question right then and there?” asked Wally as he thumbed through the latest firearm magazine, “Shooting Your Mouth Off to the Old Lady!”

B. just said, “Fellows. I wish I had seen that one coming, then I could have ducked out to buy some non-smokes, or climbed Mt Redoubt, Stratovolcano, while it was erupting, anything to save me from answering, that is!”

Armand just sat next to him putting his arm around his shoulder. “My how strong your shoulders are B.! Have you been working out at the Gym in Our Homer? My Goodness. All of those sweaty, muscle-men, just heaving and hoing while the rest of us are just…

“Armand. Can’t you see that B. is about to meet his destiny! We can talk about those sweaty muscle men another time you know?” said Wally as he folded a page corner on the article, “Sweaty Guns, or Muscle Men – You decide!”

“All I said” said Lola with her hands placed on her hips, and fine ones at that, thought B. “Was for you to give me your honest opinion about how I looked in my new dress! How hard can that be?”

Barney and Tristan stood on the roof of Bent’s Bent Antler Bar, located somewhere in someone’s imagination, while B. just looked down and said, “Gee Fellows. The ground sure looks far away from here! Are you sure it’s safe to jump?”

“Sure as shooting” said Barney, while Tristan excused himself for a moment, when his Cell Phone rang. “Hey Barn. We’ve got us an emergency call! Some fellow is standing on the edge of the roof, and doesn’t know if it’s safe to jump or not?”

“Sorry about that B., but duty calls! Take good care of yourself and don’t let your lady get you down! Get it? Get you down! – laughing heard as the two Moose disappeared into a cloud of bluish smoke, to the sounds of the Anchorage Band, Termination Dust!

Lola just looked at the TV-screen, while she munched on some low-fat Moose Chips.

“What-cha watching Sweetkins?” asked B. as he sat down next to her.

“Some poor bloke whose Lady Friend has made unreasonable demands of him…..!”

“Gosh Lola. You mean like when you said, “If you don’t move a bit more to the right, Your Lola is not going to be completely satisfied! And you know what that means?”

“Look you. Not everything in this life concerns those kind of things! It might just be that I wanted you to place the nail a bit more to the right, so the new framed picture of Moose Chips was more centered on the wall!”

“Lola. If you want to call that particular item a nail, and if you want to tell me where to place that nail, then it is up to you, how you do those kinds of things!”

Lola was about to say something in return, when B. suddenly said, “Lola. Don’t move a hair on that pretty head of your, because I just saw an interloper across the room!”

Lola just sighed, and said, “Not another one of your friends from Edmonton again?” while B. just said, “There she is, and wow what a looker!”

Lola just turned around to scowl at the appropriate place in the sentence, when she noticed her own reflection in the bedroom mirror!

“Oh now, come on B.” said Armand in a chiding sort of way. “She is not the kind of woman, who would fall for an old trick like that, is she?” said while munching on a bowl of low-fat Moose Chips, and thumbing through a magazine, he’d found at the corner table, “The Summer Collection of Vision Moose-Wear, a magazine designed to bring out the Beast in You!”

Barney started slapping his fur, then saying to Tristan “Dang! I’ve lost the Moose-Wear Magazine again! I guess, I’m just getting too old for this kind of thing?”

Tristan just looked over at his old friend saying, “Don’t take it so hard Dude. Chill Out and eat some of these Low-fat Moose Chips, then we can try again to find that fellow on the roof edge!”

-“I mean. How hard can that be…….

Lifting and Separating

“This is Gosh-Awful” blubbered Bent, and in his Edmonton Chablis no less in the wee moments of this blog, the ideas slowly coalescing into one jumbled mass of ideas falling out of the author’s imagination at or around 6 am on this fine spring morning in the north of Denmark! It was on a day such as this one, when I was much younger than today, when Love found me, somewhere in another place and time, when I least expected it!

Bent, Wally and Armand silently sipped their drinks while the unknown author of this rag continued on, as if they hadn’t been present at all. “Ahem” said Armand in a discrete way, hoping that the blog could continue, while Bent in his misery, hoped that his pivotal role in this story, would cement his chances for another year if the benevolence of the Penguin Gods allowed it to be so!

“This is Gosh-Awful” blubbered Bent, as he sipped his Edmonton Chablis in yet another retelling of life and love on the Kenai Peninsula, somewhere in one man’s dream called Alaska. Forget those B&Bs and the flights over the glaciers, because this story won’t be costing you more than the effort of leaning back in your armchair, and wondering how in the world you will ever afford seeing any number of the places that this blog purports to be telling about?

Bent, Wally and Armand were spending time in their Home away from Home, ostensibly in the town of Homer Alaska, but Real Alaskans might not consider the ideas presented as resembling what they know for a fact as the Real Alaska?

B. came in and sat down at the table with the rest of the gang, while this particular blog was stalled along the side of the road, with the hood up and smoke coming from the motor. Wally suggested firing an armor-piercing round into the number one cylinder, while the rest of the gang discussed what the original intent of the blog had been and hoped that it still could be saved before the 800-word mark reared its ugly head over the horizon!

“What is he babbling about today?” asked B. as the others had just about given up on the idea of the blog as a whole, and went about their usual business of discussing poetry and the weather, like any thinking and breathing Alaskan would be doing right now! “Ah. Don’t mind him” said Armand as he sipped his Chablis. “He’s just crying the blues again about how much it costs to travel to Alaska, and wondering why his wife was not born an Alaskan, instead of a Dane!”

“Sorry about the delay fellows” I hastened to say, “Let’s get back on the Sterling Highway, before the whole thing has to be trashed, OK?”

Armand had just pounded the gravel to initiate the beginning of the monthly meeting of the Homer Poetry Club, when Bent replied, “Hey! This is not the story that he started out with! I demand my day in the sun, even though technically it is still night in Alaska, with 10 Time Zones between it and Denmark!

Wally reached over towards Bent and B. saying “That should have read-gavel, but what with some people’s kids ideas of comic-relief, most subtleties would have been lost on the general readership, if you catch my drift?”

“The others gave him a high-five, while Wally opened yet another bottle of Edmonton Chablis, with Armand saying, “What about that Canadian that has crept her way into the last number of blogs? Shouldn’t we raise our glasses and toast the young woman?” They were just about to do so, when he remarked, “Poor Woman. Just trying to get by in life, when some fellow comes along and bombards her with comments, as if she had nothing else to do than read that type of thing and smile!”

“Look you” said Wally, who was trying to save the last shred of dignity in this blog, but was failing miserably. “We’ve been danged patient with you in this blog, and I for one would put you up for a day or two, if that is, you ever made it over here and all, but I still think….

“What do you mean, put him up?” asked Armand, who just couldn’t imagine just anyone intruding on his home and castle, especially someone who only wanted to talk about himself and his crazy ideas for the next blog.

“I only meant” said Wally again, “That if you feel B&Bs are a tad on the expensive side for your cheap-tastes, then we might be able to help you out when you visit us here in Alaska!”

“Well, I don’t know about that” I said, kicking the Tundra Dust outside in the cold, as the lights of this particular blog began to dim and fade. The others continued to drink and talk about the latest poem by Ms Raw Earth Ink, while I just wondered what happened to the original intent of this blog, and would it really show up again in the future?

-the door to the bar opened up, and voices called out-

“Hey You. Better get your sorry-butt inside here again, before we need to send out the Homer Sled Dog Rescue Team to find you! If they really exist in your imagination, that is?”

-door closes once again, as the cold wraps around itself and freezes this blog to a close……

Banana Palm Blues

Huffing and puffing as he drags an enormous Palm Tree into the house then collapsing on the floor before his mate, who greeted him warmly saying,

“You Dolt! What in Heaven’s Name are you doing with that overgrown excuse for a Shade Tree in our kitchen?”

Still gasping for air as he pulls out a non-smoke, A Mellow Yellow and proceeds to…..

“Is there really a volcano named Mellow Yellow?” asked the woman, who when looking up at her from his position on the floor, made it seem as if she were larger than life, grander than grand, and a form of beauty that exceeded all others, when her voice became clearer, then clearer yet with her intentions…..

“There isn’t, is there?” yelled that very same goddess, when she snapped the banana-like cigarette out of his mouth and-

“Gosh Lola. I was just out and about in Soldotna today, and….you look as if you don’t recognize that name? Well, it would be Soldotna Alaska, which if you’d forgotten its title when cruising into town, and meeting that great big sign with the flashing LED lights……., that is, until that semi-driver from Anchorage was reaching over to answer his cell phone, when his gal called him up and said that he didn’t need to worry about coming home anymore, because she had left him for that Elevator Operator who worked at the Conoco-Phillips Building in…..Oh Yeah. Where was I?… which is the Garden City of the Kenai Peninsula!”

“The sign said, “Buy your Banana Palm Tree today at our special price! Well. I knew that if it only was today, and the line for those trees would be forming any moment, I’d better get a move on and……

“Did you queue up, or was it just a riotous run for the money?”

“Wow Lola. I like that word, riotous, and it didn’t even qualify for those wavy red lines! Uh, I mean, with its red wavy lines and all!”

Lola just looked down on him as she picked a banana off the tree and started to eat it. “Look you. You should know by now that Palm Trees of the Banana Type cannot grow in Alaska!” still mumbling a bit while the banana muffled her amazement with her saying, “Where did you think of putting it anyway?”

“Gosh Lola. You asking me that reminds me of my Father in Healy. You know, Healy Alaska? – when he told me once, “Put that where the sun don’t shine!” “Well, since Alaska is widely known as the Sun and Fun State, then I thought that it would fit in with my father’s good advice to do so!”

“That” she started to say, as she placed the Banana Peel in the nearby can marked, “Your Banana Peel Here” – doesn’t make any sense whatsoever.”

Thinking aloud while Lola was about to continue,

“-or was it that young woman at the Geology Museum who told my father, Put that where the sun don’t shine? You see, he had just whipped out his, well his, well she didn’t think it to be the time nor the place for things like that, which on most other occasions would have been considered bad taste, but my father just said, “Doesn’t it remind you of something in the museum? and she said, “Oh yes, it does! Then she said, “I…

Lola’s foot continued to tap while an explanation of sorts wafted towards the ceiling and out of the crack that might have been caused when Mount Meager erupted back in the year, “

“Has there ever been a time when your parents were happy? I mean truly happy without your father carrying on as if he were single again?”

B. just stared at the floor a bit, before saying “Well. There was that one summer when they were spending a lot of their time under their Banana Palm Tree when my father said, “Don’t these bananas remind you of something?” Well. My mom just said, “Shucks, or Shazam or one of those things young people used to say in those days, when my father reached over and-

“Is this some film that is rolling around in your head, or did that really happen?” asked the woman whose uncanny knack of shaking the truth out of him, until the bananas fell onto the ground, was known from Soldotna to Kenai!

“Gee Lola. My mother has told me countless stories of her and my father, especially when the Old Red Sandstone Whiskey starts to loosen her tongue, and the odd-shaped Geological Minerals taken from that Museum begin to fall off the shelves in the living-room, when they…

“Are we getting anywhere with this story, or is it time to trash it like these banana peels?” said while starting on Banana Number two, a firm but pleasant number that had just the right kind of “bounce” in it that…

“So I asked my mother, “Were you that young woman that Dad met that day at the Geological Mineral Museum?”

“Well, my mother just said, ” He, your father that is, was so funny and charming, then when he took his, well, his…..out, then I said “My Goodness Gracious, Now I won’t be buying that Banana Palm Tree at the Healy Orchards, because you seem to have what a young girl needs to satisfy her wants and desires!”

“Stop right there, Mr Banana Peel! I’ve heard just about enough of this story of young Geological Lust in Healy Alaska, so just pack your bananas away, and–

“-but that’s why I bought the Banana Tree Lola. Now we can make our own peanut butter and banana sandwiches without having to buy them at the Fruit market in Homer!”

“Why else would anyone want a Banana Tree anyway?”

Ignore It and It Will Go Away

“You are not going to mention something about our neighbors to the East again, are you?”

Lola seemed a bit testy today. Not quite waspish, or touchy, perhaps just a bit on the splenetic side, but

“Are you going to use all of those synonyms, or can we get going on another day’s time-wasting and endless discussions about nothing at all?”

“Yep. Like I said, a bit Testy.”

Today,  I had promised Lola a trip to the Cook Inlet so we could expand our horizons and breathe in the fresh salt air of….Well, I got things ready to go, while Lola was considering the most proper and fashionable statement that she wanted to make, as we tooled down, or up if you are inclined that way, Highway on the Kenai Peninsula in…..

“Lola my love, while you are preparing yourself for the Grand Show, I’ll be outside working on our Ah-Oog-Ah horn, which hasn’t been up to par since the Summer slipped into the blue, blue waters of the Pacific Ocean, while we stood on the shore, waving with  our Denali Blue Hankerchiefs saying…..”

“You are a bit on the strange side today, aren’t you?” asked Lola as she dabbed a bit of Moosenel Number 5 on my most favorite places*, but which will only exist as an asterix * to remind the rest of you that I might write a lot about our lives, but not everything will be known about our most intimate moments, here in….but wait! Hark and Forthwith! I thought I heard the silent footfalls of my Love!

Lola tried to put her tetchiness aside for a bit to see if I had a concocted a Classic Case of Moose Bumps, or was it just the smell of the cucumber sandwiches being packed into bio-degradable plastic that had afflicted me at that moment? She felt my forehead, while I suggested she look deeply into my eyes and remembered why she fell in love with me that first fateful moment, way back when the birds were tweeting, or was it twatting, and the sun was shining, or was it snowing, and then she said….

“You are fine. Just fine. Others might have interpreted your thoughts as abnormal, but they don’t know you like I do, now do they?”

It was her use of third-person-plural that first drew us together that fateful day in ….. We were in the same place at the same time when..well it wasn’t exactly the same place, or she might have been on top of me, or under me, but that is another story, another time, Isn’t that what they say? I had just stepped off the Monorail that follows the coastline from Homer in… up to Anchorage in the north. It was quite busy with the usual amounts of Moose Mother’s daunting over their babies, when a fabulous woman yelled out of the train, “They are not daunting over their babies, but Doting!”

It was from that exact moment, we can call it Moment Number One, when I wanted to use the length and breadth of my grammatical errors to attract that woman and make her mine! I tried the usual lines with obvious errors in syntax, but she was not one to be wooed with things like that! I still remember it as if it were yesterday. I had polished my best subjunctive case, and hoped that the handle would withstand the weight of the dictionaries inside, as we journeyed on that first pathway together. She was demure, rather quiet shy or bashful as we first pledged our strong indifference for each other at the Kenai Ice Bar, at or near Kenai ……

While she was licking her Denali Blue Ice Cream, and I was hanging on every slurp, she said to me, “Are you certain this is the first time that we met, or are you just journeying along an uncertain memory, as I ready the cucumber sandwiches for our trip?”

No woman had ever spoken those words to me before, or she had, and it really was an uncertain memory, or was it really Denali Blue Ice Cream after all? There I was, displaying my wares for all the world to see, but did she think about us moving in together, and making a life for ourselves in…..at that point in time, or was I only destined to remain here, at or near that Ice Bar, in Kenai….or was it an Ice Bear?

“I’m counting to 10, and if you are not ready to rock and roll us out of the driveway, you’ll be feeling the true wrath of my testiness, and that is a promise let me tell you!”

So when the Denali Blue Ice Cream has disappeared behind the vivacious lips of your lover, and the sun has set over the Blue, Blue Waters of  the Pacific Ocean in….. then I would suggest you put your keyboard aside, and kiss that woman beside you…..

….in Alaska, that is……