Friday, January 3, 2020

Be kind

I suspect that most of the folks who stop by here would agree that in almost every case it's better to be kind than unkind.

If you're like me you were raised on this or a similar message. Sometimes it's expressed as "be nice," and that's a good message too. Being kind, in my opinion, is just a little bit different than being nice. Not that hair splitting over definitions is important here. We all get the point and I suspect that most if not all of us have found that being kind makes sense in a civilized society, that it's a better approach in most cases than being mean or angry or unkind, and that being kind generally brings greater benefits to the kind-er than the kind-ee.

And again if you're like me, you've tried all the other approaches many times and would like to have most of those back.


It was a pretty morning for Red and I to make sure the south unit hadn't disappeared overnight.

We paused to overlook the south unit valley, blabber about the hazardous waste incinerator stack plume, and discuss the intricacies of getting a neurosurgery consult approved.

Then it was time to ponder surgery, recovery, and plans for a spring fencing project.

And more fence stuff...

And more fence stuff...

And finally the last of the fence stuff...

Before looking at and dreaming of a hill to run when I'm better.

Then, because of a phone call I received just before shooting that last video, it was time to head for Scottsbluff to do some face-to-face medical records stuff.


Because reasons I won't delve into here, I needed to get records and a consultation faxed from the hospital in Scottsbluff to the VA in Cheyenne. It was one of those things you're best served doing yourself and in person.

Which brings us to the whole being kind thing. When I'm frustrated about my medical care and need to break up a log jam or figure out what to do next, I have a choice. Be mad and yell at the people I deal with or be kind. I really prefer to be kind. For one thing, you can always tell when you're talking to a medical person who isn't giving you the exact news you want that they're expecting to get severely yelled at. So it's always fun (and sometimes funny) to surprise them by being kind and pleasant and upbeat. When you do that, the people you surprise tend to want to bust their ass for you. Not always, but usually. Also, it just makes you feel good to be kind when you have a clear and expected option to be a dick.


Anyway. En route to Scottsbluff and approaching the Wildcat Hills.

Like the Black Hills in SODAK, the Wildcat Hills are part of the eastern slope of the Rockies.  As is everything else around these parts, but the hills are the more scrunched up part and are in some ways more visually appealing.

Mission completed successfully. Hey look, someone put a sugar factory alongside the road!

And speaking of the pen-armed U.S. Chair Force...

I don't recall the exact nomenclature and have no certain knowledge of all the top secret nukulur stuff, but I'm given to understand that beneath the boy-scout-camp-looking campus (it's a campus in the Air Force, right?) there is an underground bunker/control center where the two Missileers turn the keys to shoot off the portable sunshine.

The actual silos are a bit nondescript. I'd make better and closer videos for you except for the whole "deadly force authorized" thing.

Finally, 17-mile corner. Who doesn't love 17-mile corner?

At the end of a busy and windy day, the view wasn't half bad.

Be well and enjoy the blessings of liberty.


  1. You get more bees with honey than vinegar... Grandma taught me that more than 60 years ago... STILL worth remembering.

    1. It's a good lesson.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  2. Niceness tends to breed niceness. And yup, what Old NFO said. As for the rest of the post, wow! So much going on, I had to take notes. Bear with me, here's what I jotted down watching all that. (Enthralled I was, truly.)

    While talking about possible neurosurgery I hear -

    "Oh look, a Mylar balloon fragment..." (Hahaha!)

    Larkspur kills cows!?!? Damn!

    Solid as Sears? (Remark about a strong brace post, last I checked Sears isn't so solid anymore, but I get the reference, Sears was a good outfit for a lot of years.)

    Terrain is very rolling out there, looks flat at a glance but that's deceiving.

    Smell of the creosote off the power poles, I get that, reminds me of hot summers back home. We had a power pole at the northeast corner of the yard. When it was hot, you could smell it, not unpleasant indeed.

    In the seventh video the hill, though smaller, reminded me of the terrain at Isandlwana. I was expecting the Zulu to come boiling up from one of the nearby valleys. Tough luck for the 24th Foot! (Hope you get the reference...)

    Those Wildcat Hills are pretty striking.

    A lot of the terrain in your part of Nebraska reminds me of Russia.

    Awfully pretty amongst those evergreen trees.

    Sandstone bluffs near the end of the ninth video? Very striking and beautiful.

    Sugar beets? Big crop where I lived in Germany. Napoleon caused that as he couldn't get sugar from the West Indies - owned by the British.

    Ooh, missile wing!

    17 Mile Corner, love it! (Logical too, if'n your a country boy, and I am.)

    Nice finish with the sun going down and Nona the Wonder Dog at your side. I take it the hounds have forgiven you.

    Really great post, good luck with the nerve thing. Hope they can fix it without too much pain. (There's always pain.)

    1. Wonder if I can do this without notes?

      Mylar balloon -- I shouldn't be allowed to video and post without supervision!

      Larkspur is toxic as hell to mammals and the toxin is concentrated in the roots. However, cattle and larkspur can coexist just fine, you just have to mitigate the risk. I should do a post on that, maybe in the spring.

      I think I got that saying from my Grandpa.

      Creosote is a powerful memory smell for me.

      The Zulu's and I have worked out a deal. So far, so good!

      The Wildcat Hills are a treasure. I'll have to do some dedicated hiking and videoing there.

      Sugar beets, missile silos, and 17-Mile Corner -- things I drive past all the time and never give a thought. Fun to share though.

      We get some pretty sunsets and post-sunsets. Same with sunrises. If it wasn't for walmart this would be a good place to live.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting Sarge!

  3. Yep, I can easily see why you find that countryside beautiful. My wife and I drove to Hillsboro today and watching some of your videos, I was struck by how the houses and buildings along the way looked very much alike. Homes with outbuildings and vehicles along the highway. Various commercial buildings. I guess it might be typical American country scenery.

    I hope that the VA gets off the dime on repairing you. I don't think that you think that way, but you earned it with the dues you paid. At least, that's how I feel about it.

    Thanks for the post.
    Paul L. Quandt

    1. I think country scenes are all pretty similar. Sometimes the little differences are pretty cool.

      As far as fixing me, it'll get done I'm sure. The whole deserving thing is a stretch for me, but I'm glad the system is in place. Wouldn't want it to be too efficient -- they'd notice I'm past my sell by date and send me to the knacker.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting Paul!

  4. Oh, by the way, some of us in the Chair Force got our hands ( and uniforms ) dirty on duty. And had a lot of fun doing so.


    1. Getting dirty on duty is a pleasure many folks have no idea they missed!

  5. I believe the swarm of drones in Colorado Ive been reading about are down quite aways to your south. If they come north and buzzing the missiles I predict there will be some excitement in the neighborhood.

    1. Mom was just telling me about those. Be interesting to see what happens. I've got some drone loads for the 870, so if they come by I'll be able to deliver some mystery-solving evidence to the donut shoppe. ;-)

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting SS!

  6. Followed a link over from another site.
    Kind words - I remember making an order via the internal com system in a Lincoln, NE restaurant just before Christmas one year. The gal taking the order had a note of weariness in her voice. After she asked if there was anything else I said, "Yes, have a Merry Christmas." I could see her through the staff doorway at the time, and you could see her suddenly stand up straight again. Her voice also had life again. When she left the phone she had a spring in her step. It was amazing what effect a few kind words had. We also got great service that evening.
    Fences - yes, I remember walking those for inspection and repair on a regular basis.