Main computer OS is fubar because reasons. It’s being mulish and stupid. “I can’t copy that file! The disk is full!” What? There’s 156 GB available. Is your directory corrupt? Let us run all the diagnostics. No, everything is fine. Can you move it to another cloud drive? No. Can you connect with the internet? Yes. Can I move it to a USB thumb drive? No. Can I move it to a USB drive? No. Can I move it to this USB drive? Yes.

Whereupon I uploaded it to the host, then accessed it on my laptop. So the Bleat is saved, although the updates will be along later in the day.

Too much tsuris for a minor entry, really.

Gorgeous day, but oh, is it truly fall. On the dog walk today I saw a few trees that had started the turn, and now that I look around I see that the green looks less than lush. Everything is starting to fade. But in the brilliant light of the afternoon it . . . ok, can’t do it without reciting all the cliches. What does it do? Right. It GLOWS.

Well, it does. Another sign of fall: the dog barking as the kids from the high school walk down the street to the creek, for experiments. Natalie did that, but I don’t know what they do down there, except enjoy the time out of class. It’s the best time to be in school, I think - no cold mornings at the bus stop, or clanking pipes in a chilly room, or the pull of spring outside. Academia and fall are joined for the entirety of your life, long after you’ve ceased to have any connection at all. Not just the brilliant days, but the ones that seem melancholy and misty and - here it comes - bittersweet.

Okay, I can’t write without ladling out all the cliches, so later.

Saw something interesting the other day, and I got a column out of it.


I get this all the time: how do you come up with what you write? It’s a matter of being a dish all the time, searching for signals. Something like the image above locked on, and I got a line, a joke. Not enough for a column, but possibly something I’d drop in the Bleat. Later I heard another story on the news pertaining to signage, and it clicked: suddenly the line that was just a line was a piece of Lego, waiting for another, and the moment it appears the blocks fit together.

Then you just start writing. That’s the part you can’t explain, but it’s that way with any profession: then you start doing what you do. When it’s going well, it’s just like taking dictation. Some part of your brain has been working the matter over, or perhaps widening the pipe between brain and fingers. (You can always tell when the pipe is narrow, and what you write feels forced.) If you’re really lucky you get a set-piece segment that can eat up a quarter or a third of your space, and then it’s just a matter of finding the ending, the crack of the whip.

So now I have next Monday’s column half done, and I’d finish it now but it’s time for football at the Giant Swede’s with the Crazy Uke. Am I ready for some football? I am ready for some football.


Looks as if I was one of a very small number of people who was ready for some football, and this number did not include the players of the Minnesota Vikings. Ah well.

Forgive the shortness here, but the day was thin in content. I look forward to the resumption of normal life tomorrow! But first, I have to water the plants and tell them to say nothing to my wife. If she asks you, play dumb.










There was a substantial TV Tuesday entry I can't access, and it had to do with these images, clipped from Adam-12. It's a better show than the TV version of Dragnet, and while it's dramatically lacking and full of 70s tv tropes and cliches and tiresome music and garish lighting, it's a good historical document, and sociological survey.

He said, making sweeping and unconvincing claims for a guilty pleasure, which is really neither.

Anyway. One of the crimes took place in a Los Angeles grocery store, neighborhood variety, c. 1973, and I swear I already did this. But I don't think I mentioned a certain detail: if you're of a certain age, you know - almost instantly, without thinking - the name of the brand of the items hanging on the left side.

Grandma candy, it was.

Two: the Cigarette Department! Right out in the open.

The number of stock players who parade through Adam-12 is greater than Dragnet. They had a deeper bench. Why, look who:

Him I don't know. Her I do, but I can't tell you where. She has the look of someone who played a confused neighbor in a sitcom who always thought something was going on.

The episode has a psychotic guy holding a terrified woman at knifepoint.

The tension is almost unbearable.

So is the interior decor.



It’s 1964.

Oh just imagine the existence of these! Sit by the windowsill with a dreamy look, and dream of the day!

C.mon. There’s a lot of things people have liked that don’t have to be remade in Swanson’s form.

I’m really, really hungry at this moment, so consider that when you hear me admit that yes, I would eat that.

But I’m not that hungry.

On the other hand, everyone loves the apple stuff, because it’s allllll sugar.

Hash Loaf. Hey, some hot sauce, not bad.



Not really a matter of trust, is it? Did anyone stare at the empty foil package with brimming eyes and think you betrayed me


Probably Walker electric trucks.

The more things change etc: ConEd is now bringing electrics back for their fleet.


The idea must have sounded smart at the time. It’s expandable! You can do dozens of these! But somewhere along the line someone had to know this wasn’t turning out. Too late. Anyway, the client liked it. But you don’t know if the client wanted to impress the ad men by agreeing with them.


Write your own rebate check! You’re in control!

“If you have all 12 labels, make out the check for $1.20.” Numeracy, perhaps, was not presumed in the target market.

How did you get your money? Here’s what you had to buy:

“Send the front panel only.” The whole thing? You’re going to eat up half your rebate in stamps.

“Send one inch of winding tape, so it can poke through the envelope, gum up the automatic sorting machines, and scratch the postman.”

You wonder how much stuff sticky with odorous meat juices showed up in the Hormel mailroom.



That will do! More adventures of our favorite Nicotine Imp await. Or maybe not. Still working on that, and it's one-bloody-o'clock in the morning.




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