Archive: » 2021 » April

No More ‘Up on the Roof’ for me

The pollen has passed, and spring cleaning has commenced, a process that likely will continue until summer arrives.  Last week, I pulled out the pressure washer to begin the arduous but fulfilling task of cleaning the house, deck and driveway. My Beautiful Mystery Companion asked me the other day if I enjoyed spending hours holding on to a pulsating plastic trigger as an intense stream of water washed away the pollen, with my nostrils streaming nonstop as well — thanks to the pollen. The answer is yes, I do enjoy it. I have always taken satisfaction in cleaning things, whether it’s tidying...

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Please Show You’re Not a Robot

An interesting message pops up from time to time when I am filling interlibrary loan article requests, trying to find such arcane titles (at least to me) as: Facile synthesis of ceramic SiC-based nanocomposites and the superior electrochemical lithiation/delithiation performances A polar stationary phase obtains by surface-initiated polymerization of hyperbranched polyglycerol onto silica Shock train and pseudo-shock phenomena in internal gas flows Predation of Eastern Cottontail Rabbit (Sylvilagus floridanus) by Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) A Nucleation Progenitor Function...

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Sesquicentennial Project Began With a Plate

It started with a plate. Not just any old plate, but the Longview centennial plate hanging in the wet bar in our home. It was produced in 1970 at the behest of the centennial committee. My dad, Brad Borders, was commissioned to create the artwork, which consists of a half-dozen pen-and-ink sketches of historic sites and events from Longview’s first 100 years. As some of you have already read, that plate sparked the idea that became @longviewtx150, a project to celebrate Longview’s sesquicentennial. Two-and-half years ago, I bought O. Rufus Lovett, noted photographer and my brother from another...

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Driving Without Brakes Is Not Recommended

Once the snow and ice had finally melted from the mid-February winter storm, I decided to crank up our 1965 Ford F100 pickup, known as Big Red. I keep it covered most of the time. The cover conveniently has a zipper on the driver’s side so the entire cover doesn’t have to be removed. As always, Big Red fired right up. The truck is by nature cold-natured, so I decided to let it idle for a while and went back inside. I got busy working on the computer and promptly forgot Big Red was idling — for about two hours. The only reason I remembered then was that I was taking something outside to the recycling...

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The Leading Edge of Spring

It is raining pollen, so it must officially be spring in East Texas. As I walked the neighborhood on the last day of March — hard to believe that the year is already one-fourth gone — a steady breeze swept a mist of yellow dust across the landscape, and clumps of oak clusters fell on the pavement. My nose began itching, eyes watering. Yup, it’s spring all right. Our neighborhood’s foliage looks a bit battered after the mid-February winter storm. Brown shrubs stand forlorn in front yards. Already, some folks are hiring landscapers to dig out and replace them. Not me. Not yet. Our yard...

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