Big Rig Mishap on Interstate 10


We passed this rolled big rig in the median along I-10 just west of Quartzsite, AZ, today. You can see “Dome Rock” in the background of this (clickable) image The Better Half took as we passed the mishap. There were two big rigs in the median, this one and another that was still upright. There were crews working to upright the rolled rig, but, as TBH notes, there were a lot of “supervisors” too.

I don’t know how this happened; the rolled rig was facing westbound on its side, and the other (upright) big rig in the median was facing eastbound. That seemed peculiar to me on a four lane divided highway.

Whatever happened, we pray for those involved that they may quickly recover. BE CAREFUL OUT THERE!

New Paint for Old 761

AT&SF Locomotive

Our Town’s old Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Locomotive (No. 761) and Caboose got a face-lift when crews applied new black and red paint this year. The town is preparing for the Annual Gold Rush Days and Senior Pro Rodeo that will take place over the coming weekend. The new paint fits in with those preparations.

While the town will be immersed in up to twenty thousand extra non-full-time-residents this weekend, The Better Half and I will be heading out to Kalifornistan for a visit with the kids and grandson. We regret not being able to attend the antique car show tomorrow afternoon, but it will likely be the same dudes and their classics we saw at the Cops Who Care Rally in December and at the shows in October and February last year. The same goes for the parade on Saturday.

I checked the weather forecast at both ends of our trip; it will be slightly warmer at the Palm Desert end than here in town, but both will have highs in the 80’s and lows in the 50’s. This is a bit warmer than normal for mid-February. We’re packing shorts and T-shirts but with sweatpants and a hoodie in case it gets nippy.

Flyover Country

Flyover Country

We had a very nice day in the Sonoran High Desert today. The temperatures were in the upper seventies and the skies were mostly clear. The Better Half and I decided that the winter freeze probability is henceforth quite low, so we uncovered the orchard and a couple of cacti that were deemed vulnerable to frost.

After uncovering the plants and stowing the covers, I took my camera out in the back and caught this telephoto shot of a commercial jetliner heading westbound at flight level thirty-something, I’m guessing. We could barely hear the engines as it flew over (yes it IS very quiet here) and the contrail it painted went on for a couple of miles in trail of the jet engines before dissipating.

Our forecast is for clear skies and temperatures ranging from lows of around 50° to highs in excess of 80°. We could get a cold snap before the spring, but we’re enjoying this great weather in the time being.

Last Tenth Lunar Phase

Last Tenth

I took my camera up on the hill behind the house this morning after refilling the bird feeders to perhaps catch a few candid shots of the critters. I had the 75-300mm telephoto lens on the camera, figuring to get some remote close shots if they presented themselves. I did get some good critter shots, but I surprised myself that I was able to get a non-tripod, non-stabilized photo of the last crescent phase of the moon before it gets too close to the sun to see.

According to a lunar information website that I visit from time to time, the illuminated portion of the lunar disc amounts to ten percent of the surface visible from Earth. The actual new moon will not be until Monday, but, as I mentioned, the moon will be too close to the sun over the next couple of days to be able to make any amateur observations of the waning crescent.

We will be looking toward the west after sunset next Tuesday and Wednesday in hopes of seeing the first phases of the waxing crescent moon. Stay tuned.

Blazing Saddlebags

The animated widget above was inspired by a bumper sticker that The Better Half spotted in the grocery store parking lot today. The animation won’t start until you click the image. The title of this post is in reference to a burning pantsuit over those tremendous thighs and cankles of the leading Democratic liar.

2015 Tax Preparation Season

taxes.jpgI spent a little time yesterday and today putting numbers in the TurboTax® program for the 2015 tax year. With the first cut numbers in the program, it appears that we are on track to receive small amounts in refunds from both the Feds and Arizona.

By the way, that is NOT me in the image. It is some poor bastard who can’t get it together when it comes to tax season. Don’t be like that poor bastard.

Things have changed for us since the last tax year due to no longer having mortgage interest to deduct and a few other minor items. Realizing our tax situation would be quite different in 2015, we donated some of the money that would have been used to make mortgage payments to some of our favorite charities. We select charities that we know will piss off the IRS and the .gov in general because they support private Christian education, anti-global-warming research, veterans support, second amendment foundation, etc. We love getting deductions from the tax bill while rankling progressives at the same time.

Speaking of the .gov, I still have not received my SSA 1099 form from Social Security. Everything else is here, either by electronic or USPS means, but not the SSA. I know the exact amounts for payments and withholding, but it would make me feel more secure to have the paperwork to support the figures.

I will likely have the Fed filed by early next week and the state as well, although the former will be efiled and the latter by USPS because the $20 efile fee is a significant percentage of the refund amount. There is no fee for the Fed efile.

The Road from Surprise to Wickenburg and Other Good News

Castle Peak and Saguaros

Yesterday, I had an appointment down in Sun City West in which I thought I was to have a medical procedure involving an endoscopic inspection of my bladder as a follow-up to the cancer from which I am now in remission. When I got to the urologist, he advised me that the next procedure would not occur unless there would be reason to do so, and in any case, not until next summer. He did order a renal ultrasound to inspect the kidney and bladder waterworks which I will have next week. In the meantime, the Doc says everything seems to be in proper working order, thank The Lord.

On the way home from the busy traffic down in the valley, The Better Half and I were enjoying the lighter traffic going up US 60 and most of all, the gorgeous desert scenery along the way. TBH took this photo of Castle Peak above the Castle Hot Springs historical area and all the beautiful cacti and shrubbery along the way. Clickable image.

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