Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hot chicks in diapers

More photo imagery from the Salmon River last week. In this particular moment that's been captured forever in time, we see the river diapersuit modeled by Elizabeth, Karen and Dionna.

Stunning. Simply stunning.

Constructed of two durable yet elegant personal flotation devices, the PFD diaper ensemble is ideal for floating around gigantic eddies on a hot, hot day while drinking a beer or cocktail that can be stowed by sort of cramming the drink in between the upper part of your life jacket.

Sadly, there's also a men's version. It looks like this:

Not as stunning. It's just not.

The river diaper is strictly for floating. Not pooping. We practice Leave No Trace camping and strictly adhere...to....uhm.....

Is that a piece of corn right there up near the top?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Salmon River landscape ruined by a bikini

I tried to edit out that lady in the picture because she just gets in the way of the hills and pretty sky I was trying to focus on, but, whatever, I guess it'll have to do.

That's Karen, exploring around on a beach in the vicinity of Flynn Creek Rapid on a float last week.

Slicing apples from 40 yards and moving to Sherwood Forest

Before I hear from People for the Ethical Treatment of Apples, let me just say this one was old and wrinkly.

Week before bow season opened, my bow was shooting happy. Then I notice fraying on one of the new cables put on three months ago. Mysterious because I can't figure where the chafe would come from. Off it goes to Floyd the bow mechanic.

New cable and guard, and I expect some tweaking to be necessary, but can't get it sighted in right and finally notice the center serving has unwound and crept up the string on me, migrating the D loop up and out of whack....

I watched every youtube video tutorial there is, tried a new loop setup, learned some new knots, moved every pin and allen screw there is after changing one thing to accommodate another -- then my field points were right on but when I shot a broadhead it was all over the place.

A couple sheets of paper tuning later, backing off the poundage, raising the rest, new spark plugs and an oil change later--it was a great relief to finally get the Martin Panther shooting right and see a chunk of apple fall off from a broadhead at 40 yards.

Take that, fruit.

Update: I guess I have to move to Nottingham now.

I was standing behind the old '67 Buick in the yard, shooting across at the bag and having a chat while slinging some arrows at the same time, not doing a very good job at either activity....but I was consistent enough to hit one arrow with another and Jacey says, "I think you messed up that other arrow."

If by 'mess up' she means getting all Robin Hood and shooting one arrow right down the shaft of the other, then get Friar Tuck on the phone and tell him to get ready because we got some robbing from the rich to do.

I'd feel a lot better about this if it was a bullseye that got duplicated, but, ah, well. I seem to be shooting low, after all that applesauce talk.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Review: Carter Niemeyer 'Wolfer'

Here's my recent Chieftain column with a book suggestion I'd like to see as standard issue for everyone involved in the back and forth of the wolf debate here in the Wallowas.

My review gets reviewed at a coyote, wolf and cougar blog here. It includes the line, "With all due respect to Mr. Rombach...." thanks. Always like it when I'm given all due respect, except, heeeeey....they couple that with "...who states that he was completely without knowledge of Wolves prior to downloading the contents of Wolfer...."

Not completely without knowledge. I know you don't capitalize Wolves in the middle of a sentence like this person, so I got that going for me. Which is nice.

Also, with all due respect, if by 'downloading the content,' they mean I bought a copy of the book like I said, then OK.

Review is below.

And Furthermore

Jon Rombach

I’ve stayed out of the wolf debate up until now because I don’t really know anything about wolves. But it sure doesn’t seem like that’s a requirement for joining the discussion, so I might as well wade in here.

I ordered the book ‘Wolfer’ by Carter Niemeyer after reading a review that described Niemeyer’s career as a government trapper turned wolf specialist, in charge of both introducing and removing wolves, depending on the circumstances. He developed enemies on both sides. Gained allies that started out as foes and had other working relationships start friendly before going south.

Well, that’s the guy I want to hear from. And by page 2, he was already making sense with this line: “Wolves are not all the things people want them to be, good or bad….”

I say this book is worth reading, for this alone: Niemeyer spends a good deal of time walking you through the business of determining whether a cow is dead because of a wolf or not. It’s a crime scene, essentially. And an autopsy. Animals tend to stop living now and then for reasons other than either a wolf or a slaughterhouse bolt. There are telltale signs when a wolf kills another animal, just as somebody who knows what they’re looking at should be able to determine when a wolf was not the cause of death, or has been eating from a carcass that was already dead from disease, previous injury or whatever punched it’s ticket. He relates cases where wolves were in the vicinity and that’s all the evidence some folks needed—despite no wolf tracks among the other tracks at the scene.

Wolf haters and wolf lovers will both likely find passages they’ll despise and embrace in this book. Here’s some that stood out for me. Page 183: “Hearings are a sign that the government has already made a decision. Taking public testimony is just a way to ease folks into an idea and let them blow off steam about it.”

Page 203: “In the wolf business, there’s no changing people’s minds, so there’s no point in arguing with them or trying to stop them from doing something illegal or just plain stupid. I’ve never known a wolf hater to become a wolf-lover or vice versa. When questioned, few people have neutral feelings about the subject, and those who are tolerant of wolves are usually afraid to express themselves.”

Page 182: “…wolves weren’t guilty most of the time.”

Page 331: “It was another case of wolf advocates being the wolf’s worst enemy.”

208: “No matter what the decision was regarding wolves, no one was happy….”

352: “The wolf issue has brought out such hatefulness in people. I want them to see that it doesn’t have to be all one way. It can’t be.”

So there you go. That’s my contribution to the wolf uproar. Read this book if you want. It’s not great, but is worth reading if you think you may find yourself talking about wolves.

If I’d grown up in Iowa and was fascinated with fox hunting and taxidermy, I’d go ahead and say ‘Wolfer’ is great. But Carter set out to write a memoir and he did, complete with reminiscing on an Iowa childhood, pursuing foxes and mounting animals. I had to brush by these to get at his wolf experience, which is why I bought the book.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go tie flagging on the collar of my elderly, 14-year-old husky-mix dog so I can take her on a stroll and explain to startled passersby that, no, that is not a wolf. She might lick your hand if you hold it out, but she’s not going to hobble over on her bad hips and tear your throat out. You’d be surprised how many times I have this conversation. Unless you’re Carter Niemeyer.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Cookie Monster Waits

Years ago I had Rain Dogs playing in my truck and a friend's kid asked, 'Is this the Muppets?'

Kind of, I guess. As proven by whoever had the time to do this bit of editing:

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Rush Limbaugh blowing his foghorn

I'm not a highly trained broadcast specialist. But I did work at a radio station for, I don't know, six or seven years.

And I would walk in to hear the voice of Rush Limbaugh coming from the AM broadcast booth each and every morning. Usually 'Clinton' or 'Monica' would be the first word I'd hear, even years after Clinton left office.

Rush experienced some sort of hearing loss, if I recall, related to his years of wearing 'cans,' which I would call 'headphones,' as I'm no highly trained broadcast specialist.

I also experienced a sort of hearing loss related to radio work, though mine was of a self-preservationist type where my brain learned to tune out Rush Limbaugh, because otherwise I would have gone crazy.

So. Despite knowing better I listened to a clip this morning from a recent case of Limbaugh talking.

The context is Rush Limbaugh criticizing Al Sharpton for making a mistake while talking.

Message being: if you can't talk and not make mistakes, don't talk for a living.

Here's Rush's delivery:

"...Al, lemme just tell you, as a -- as a highly trained broadcast specialist: stick to activism and the fog horn. . . ."

The fog horn?

I, uh . . . Rush, I'm not -- do you mean fog horn, like activism is warning others of peril in the way that a fog horn is blown during foggy conditions that . . . I don't. . . .

Then Rush goes on: ". . . and the bull horn. . . ."

And he does it pretty seamlessly, just adds bull horn to the fog horn and I guess that's where his high degree of broadcast specialist training kicks in. But, um, you just . . . uh, flubbed what you were saying which was making fun of somebody else flubbing what they were saying by way of telling them to get out of broadcast journalism if they can't keep from -- oh, to hell with it. I don't have to worry over these things anymore since I blew the fog horn and got out of radio.

Here's the audio if you want to hear it. You only have to make it to the :21 second mark. But also notice the sputtering that goes on from :07 to :11 seconds. That's some highly trained jibberish right there.

Messing with Morgan: A how-to guide

Morgan Jenkins is a great pal. He taught me to row a boat and convinced Penny and Paul to give me a job as a river guide during a downswing in my employment arc after I threw in the towel on being a newspaper reporter and wasn't exactly sure how the next round of bills were going to be paid.

He may regret that kind deed. And Paul and Penny may have revised their hiring protocols since, but let's stay on track here.

Mo and I have logged some river miles between then and now and river guiding has been a great way to see some of this country I moved out here to see.

Also, I'm sometimes mean to Morgan just because it's funny. For me, I mean. Here's some time-lapse photography from the other day when we're driving out of Dug Bar and stopped to soak in the view looking down on the Imnaha Canyon.

Mojo is fond of Shuttle Monkey, a stuffed animal with bendy appendages that rides along in the Winding Waters truck on all driving missions. I don't know why, but Morgan insists on it and he's attached to the thing. So on this day Morgan thought it would be nice to have a picture taken of us two buddies in front of this great view -- and Shuttle Monkey should be in the picture too.

So I asked if I could hold Shuttle Monkey and Morgan didn't like the idea but I persisted and then threw his stuffed animal out toward the prickly pear cactus behind us. I really am kind of an arsehole. Totally uncalled for but I got a great deal of enjoyment out of the thing and here are the stages of Morgan's disbelief. Priceless.

There's even a video featuring Shuttle Monkey over on the Winding Waters Gearboat Chronicles site. Watch it here. Sorry Mo.

You can't see it, but Morgan has a look of disgust on his face.

OK, now you can see it.

After, "Why would you do that?" and "I'm sorry, it'll never happen again," we patched things up.