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Linn Keller, SASS 27332, BOLD 103

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Linn Keller, SASS 27332, BOLD 103 last won the day on October 27 2016

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About Linn Keller, SASS 27332, BOLD 103

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  • Birthday 03/31/1956

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    Firelands Peacemakers

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  • Location
    Lorain County, Ohio
  • Interests
    History, calligraphy, any game that burns powder
    BOLD 103, Center Township Combat Pistol League
    Skywarn, ham radio, and no idea what I want to do when I grow up!

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  1. "Tried the cookies. Coconut flavored sawdust. DRY coconut flavored sawdust." African food labels are printed for the illiterate masses and also with the knowledge that there are so very many languages on said continent. The labels generally have a picture of the contents. Gerber couldn't imagine why its baby food wasn't selling. Uuummmmmmm ....
  2. You have brought some genuine happiness into the overcast and gloom of the season.
  3. I understand Pietta has improved greatly. Have a Uberti that runs like a Swiss watch.
  4. Rear windows are generally the safety glass -- not laminated glass -- break it and it crumbles just like sideglass. A fellow medic's wife would gather the crumbled glass and glue the pieces to a glass jar candle and make it pretty and sparkly. I never realized that's what it was, until Long Tall Roger pointed it out and said what his wife used for ingredients.
  5. 93. WISE WOMAN In an era of computers and space travel, the sight of a little girl and her Daddy riding to school on horseback was most definitely an anomaly: indeed, it merited an article in the local paper, which thanks to the Internet, generated comment from around the world -- some applauding the charm of a slower, more measured transportation, some decrying this usurpation of an animal's freedom, others even less civilized and more attention-seeking: none of this mattered to the Sheriff, nor to his daughter, who happily paced alongside her big strong Daddy on her Zebra-horse. It was not a zebra, of course, and in daylight looked even less like the African creature of that name; it was an Appaloosa, with the white sclera around the colored part of its eyes, with the striped hooves, with a pattern that looked more striped in low light, and especially by lantern light: in a girl-child's eyes, though, her Zebra-horse was beautiful, and if she insisted it looked like its African relative, none could really deny a resemblance. Daddy and daughter talked, sometimes, especially coming home from school, where Dixie would ask her Daddy about puzzling things the school taught her, or things she'd heard and couldn't quite understand, and so it did not really take the Sheriff by surprise when his darlin' daughter asked, "Daddy, can we see ghosts?" Linn laughed and looked at his apple-cheeked daughter, her Stetson carefully placed on her twin pigtailed hair, the silver-and-turquoise hatband shining in the sun. "Princess," he said, "do you know what a Wise Woman is?" Dixie blinked and looked at her Daddy, surprised: if one could follow the swiftness of a child's thoughts, one might hear her thinking "Of course I know what a wise woman is, I know what wise is and so a wise woman must be really smart," and then one would hear a cautioning voice warning of too-simple questions. "Is Mommy a Wise Woman, Daddy?" she asked, using a technique she'd learned from her Daddy when he was deflecting a question or probing for more information. "You Mommy is wise, all right," Linn nodded, "but 'twas my Mama who was a Wise Woman." He looked at Dixie and smiled a little. "Your Grandma Willamina could see ghosts." Dixie's eyes widened and a gust of winter wind puffed against her face, carrying light, dry little snowflakes with it. "Daddy," she asked in a small voice, "do we have ghosties?" Linn laughed again. "No, Princess. I've never seen a one. Your Grandma did and one of our long-dead relatives -- Sarah Lynne McKenna -- she could see ghosts." "But whatzit a wise woman seeit with ghosties," Dixie said all in a rush, and then stopped and corrected herself. "Daddy ... do wise women see ghosts?" "Some do, Princess. I've never known anyone who saw a ghost, who was not a Wise Woman." "You didn't seeit the ghosties, Daddy?" Linn laughed. "No, Princess. I never have." Dixie frowned. "If Gwamma saw ghosties an' Gwamma is a ghostie now maybe canit we seeit Gramma?" Linn was silent for several long moments, and Dixie looked up at her Daddy and was a little scared at his expression. Her big strong Daddy, who wasn't afraid of nothin', looked very ... ... very sad. Dixie looked ahead and then to her side, and saw that a big white Shepherd doggie was pacing along with them, a white Shepherd-doggie with yellow eyes, that more flowed than trotted. Dixie did not regard this as unusual. Her Daddy had The Bear Killer and there was Black Jack, a black Malinois, and there had been Tank but he died an' Mommy told her about a Beagle doggie they had named Daisy Mae and Dixie could almost remember Daisy Mae but not quite and she figured this white Shepherd-doggie with the yellow eyes was one of her Daddy's Sheriff-doggies. Dixie giggled a little and looked at the white doggie and decided she liked the white doggie. "Look ahead," Linn said, pointing: "Let's hold up for a minute," and Dixie looked ahead, at the oncoming snow, at how it swirled thick and spun almost into a dust devil. "I don't like the look of that," Linn muttered. "Let's hole up here." Father and daughter turned their mounts and trotted up a narrow arroyo, almost a split in the mountain: a little trickle of ice-crusted water trickled down its middle, there was a little scrub brush clinging stubbornly to the rocky sides, but it was crossways to the prevailing wind and that's what Linn wanted. He'd seen hard snowstorms before, driven before an unfriendly wind, and he wished not to have himself and his little girl lost this close to town. They turned to face the way they'd come, they turned just as the swirling whiteout hit, and as snow spun into their sheltered crevice, Dixie saw the white doggie dissolve into the driving snow. Again, she did not regard this as unusual: a white doggie, white snow, blowing thick and hard: she expected the doggie to follow them. Linn swung down, led his red gelding deeper into the narrow hollow: here there was an overhang, not enough to stop the cold, but enough to blunt most of the wind, to cause snow to eddy and drift slowly downward: Dixie followed, still mounted, and Linn pointed to a sheltered cove, big enough for them and their horses. "I've slept here before," he said quietly, pulling the strings on the blanket roll behind his saddle. "This is sheltered enough we can have a bit of a fire and stay warm." "Okay, Daddy," Angela said uncertainly, thinking of home and Mommy's kitchen and how good it smelled and her belly reminded her it was long and long again since she'd eaten last -- why, an hour at least! -- but she hid her discomfiture as her Daddy draped his blanket over a rock, motioned his little girl to sit, parked his backside beside her and wrapped the blanket around them both. "I'll show you a trick," he said quietly, and Dixie heard the scrape of a lighter's flint, and her Daddy wrapped the blanket around the two of them and she looked down to see her Daddy had a fat candle stuck in the sandy dirt and the blanket around it and he said quietly, "That candle is enough to keep the two of us warm, as long as the wind doesn't get in!" Dixie felt the blanket, loose on her left, shift, and a cold, wet nose pushed against her hand: she reached down and rubbed doggy fur and smiled, and The Bear Killer laid his jaw across her thigh and whuffed quietly. "Having a dog to cuddle up with also keeps you warm," Linn observed quietly. Dixie shifted the blanket a little, peeped out, past their saddled horses, out the gap they'd ridden through. Her eyes widened and she saw a white horsie and a white woman riding it and they turned and looked very directly at her and the woman had pale eyes and she looked just like the pictures of her Gramma that hung on the walls beside her Daddy's rolltop desk and then she dissolved into the snow and was gone, and Dixie felt her heart flutter just a little and she realized she must be a Wise Woman, for she'd seen her Gramma's ghostie. Her Daddy ran his arm around his little girl's shoulders, drew her in against him; they listened to the wind, felt it tug a the blanket: they were warm, sheltered beneath the big wool blanket, they had a little light, thanks to the beeswax candle, and her Daddy handed her a candy bar with a whispered, "Don't tell your Mommy I'm spoiling your supper," and Dixie giggled at their shared conspiracy. They were about twenty minutes, sheltering from the sudden blow: it took almost as long to shake out the blanket and get it rolled up and secured, and to get mounted up and headed out again: as they came to the mouth of their sheltering hollow, a gust of wind blew up a swirl of snow, and Dixie saw the smiling woman with pale eyes, on a big snow-horsie, rear and paw at the cold, swirling flakes, and then dissolve into the snowy gust, and she smiled a little. Dixie didn't really know what-all a Wise Woman was, but her Gramma had been one and now she knew she was one too, and The Bear Killer paced along beside her Daddy, and the big white doggie on her left, and then a gust of wind blew another curtain of snow over them and Dixie saw the white doggie blow away like it was made of snow and a twisty of fog hung for a moment and then screwed itself down into the frozen ground, and was gone.
  6. I was going to suggest Earth Quakes, until you allowed as it had something to do with puddy tats.
  7. Dear Lord ... Was I out looking for something like this and carrying the biggest bore boomer I've got ... I seriously think I'd catfoot away and call in either artillery or an air strike!
  8. Pat, you are absolutely correct! My best friend and brother lawman Bob Beymer (rest his soul) described this very thing! He was going to Ohio State University and was rooming with a railfan. They were out on the foggy night with Losley's scanner and waiting for the Freedom Train to come rolling in, and were about to give up for the night: they climbed back in the car, griping and belly aching and planning which restaurant to raid (the military marches on its stomach and so do college men!) and the scanner stopped and said "Hold the freight, the Freedom Train is coming in." He described their exit from that sad old rusted out four door sedan somewhat akin to circus clowns bailing out of a center-ring vehicle. They ran the hundred feet to their position at the grade crossing, looking, peering into the fog, listening ... A light pushed weakly through the fog, then grew stronger; the night breeze eddied, washed aside the intervening fog, and there she was ... under steam, coasting in, dead silent, almost like a ghost. These are not my words. This is as near verbatim as I can recall Brother Beymer saying it.
  9. I've long loved the sound of a steam traction engine at labor!
  10. Now here's a subject to which I paid close attention! Many thanks for this!
  11. 92. THINK ZEBRAS, NOT HORSES "Daddy?" "Yes, Princess?" "Daddy, can I have a zebwa?" I laid down my pen and turned, swiveling my office chair to look at my little girl. She was standing there looking all ruffly and girly and big-eyed innocent, and I knew why she asked me about a zebwa. I mean zebra. I know Old Pale Eyes had his little girl on a horse as soon as he adopted her. I know my namesake had his Angela in saddle leather just as soon as he possibly could, and his green-eyed wife Esther, not wanting the Old Man's bad habits to kill their newly-adopted daughter, immediately took over training the pretty little girl how to ride. I know Angela would jump her horse (which was quite against her Mama's red-headed wishes) over fences, gulches and anything she possibly could, including a schoolmate, which led to what we'll politely call a misunderstanding, but that's discussed in one of the Sheriff's journals and I don't want to plow that ground a second time. Let's just say that my beautiful bride allowed as our little girl should learn to ride, and I agreed, and Dixie didn't want to ride a horsie, she wanted a zebwa. I mean a zebra. I looked at my girly little girl, looking all sweet and little-girlish with a big ribbon bow in her hair, in a knee length frock with rufflies along the hem, with her shiny patent leather slippers and ruffly top anklets, and I could almost hear my spine going snap, crackle, pop as I got wound tighter and tighter around her little finger, and I reached out and took both her little hands in both my big Daddy-hands and I said "Let's look for a saddle-mount for you tonight, shall we?" Her eyes were naturally big and liquid -- she got that from her Mama, my beautiful bride has deep eyes, dark eyes, eyes that sparkle, eyes I could swim in ... I blinked, smiled, stood. "I know a man that has some horses." Dixie bounced a little on her toes, then she blinked and said "I need to change clothes," and she turned and scampered up the broad stairs. I took a long breath, looked at Mama's framed portrait hanging over my roll top desk. "Mama," said I, "you'll have to help me with this one," and my wife molded herself to my backside, hugging me from behind: I felt her lay her cheek bone against my back bone and I heard her sigh, "She will, you know," and The Bear Killer raised his head and rumbled approval. I had no more than got to the front door, got my gunbelt slung back around my middle and shrugged into my Carhartt, than Dixie came thundering down the stairs, as noisy as any little boy: she ran a hand around the end post and swung hard about, not losing her footing but coming close, and I went to one knee, fast, and caught her as she ran full-bore into me, laughing. I picked her up and kissed her on the side of the neck and said "I'll need your help on this," and she nodded solemnly, and I reached up with my free hand and lifted her little Stetson off its peg. Her hat hung beside mine. Where my Stetson was plain black felt, with a plain, black-leather band, hers was a light tan, but it had a silver mounted turquoise hat band made of real silver and real turquoise, and most folks would swallow their dentures to know how much that hat band cost. I know nobody ever tried to steal it, probably because her Daddy is Sheriff, and because the only soul to lay a hand on my little girl found himself on the ground with a pretty bad headache: when a stranger seizes my daughter by the arm and hauls her toward a pickup truck with the door open, my first inclination is to drive a hard cast .44 through his left ear. As it was, I taken three long strides, seized HIS arm and drove him hard over top the head with my revolver's barrel. He'd claimed later he thought she was his daughter, run off and seeing a boy he didn't approve of, which held no water, for my little Dixie had yet to see her tenth birthday, and His Honor sentenced him to ... well, when the Judge found the man didn't have a daughter, and the court appointed headshrinker said he was sane, His Honor had neither sympathy nor mercy, and he won't breathe free air for another decade, if he survives. His kind don't last long in a prison's general population. Anyway Dixie settled her Stetson on her braided hair and she set it just so, for girls are like that, me, I just mashed my skypiece down on my gourd and we walked down to the barn. Dixie changed out of her girly frilly frock and slippers and now she was in jeans and boots and a flannel shirt, she was in a Carhartt that was getting tight on her -- I looked down and realized her jeans were getting short on her, too -- good Lord, how fast is this child growing? -- anyway I whistled up Big Red, and the Paso gelding came pacing up and rubbed his head ag'in my front until I bribed him with a pepper mint, then he leaned down and muttered to Dixie and she rubbed his jaw and called him a good puppy, and I laughed, for she'd never called him a horsie, he'd always been a good puppy, and I never saw fit to correct her. How could I correct something so absolutely cute, something I knew I'd remember into my old age ... I learned that from my Pa, who cherished such moments from my childhood. So did my Uncle Will. Matter of fact Uncle Will still tormented me about tripping over the design in the linoleum and I wasn't but about five years old at the time. Old men, I knew, had long memories, and I was developing those same long memories, and I looked down at Dixie, looking up at me and her face clean-scrubbed and shining in the lantern light and I reached for the saddle blanket. Big Red danced a little and Dixie backed up. She'd seen me cut loose with a yell and a hard punch when a horse stepped on my foot: I was lucky, I had boots on and it didn't break anything, but it hurt like thunder and still aches when the weather changes. I count it a good thing that my little girl learned from MY mistake, instead of making her own in that department. Saddle blanket and saddle, bridle and I took Dixie around the waist and stood her up on a bale of hay: she waited until I was mounted, then she climbed the stall boards and half-swung, half-jumped a-straddle behind me, and off we went. Big Red was a Paso Fino, and an unusually large example of the breed: he'd come from the Border country, from what used to be the Vega y Vega ranch, before it became almost a war zone: as bad as things had gotten here in Firelands County, things were much worse south of us: Big Red stepped out smooth and swift and fell into his paso largo gait. Dixie giggled and clung to my back like a burr on a curly dog, and Big Red laid his ears back and leaned into a gallop and tucked his forelegs and shoved off with his back and we sailed over the board fence and Dixie's happy squeal trailed in the air behind us. We set a nice easy pace cross country and 'twas not far to the ranch I had in mind. Back years ago it had been the Macneil ranch, and they'd bred good horses there -- tough, mountain-bred, enough mesteƱo and Appaloosa with some Arab thrown in, and his horses were prized for their endurance, their toughness, and when needed, their speed. Dixie insisted she wanted a zebra and I had something in mind. I turned my head: "Princess," said I, "come up here in front of me." "Okay, Daddy," she piped in that happy-little-girl voice of hers: she stood, swung a leg around me, I took her around the waist and she ended up sitting on Big Red's neck, facing me. "Now darlin'," said I, "you know zebras are found in Africa." Dixie nodded, big-eyed and solemn. "And you know zebras have fighting fangs and they are vicious and mean and they kick lions to death." She nodded again. "They don't make good saddle mounts, darlin'. They've been saddled and ridden but they tend to chew their riders' legs off and do a Mexican hat dance on what's left of 'em." Dixie giggled, gripped the front of my coat: "Daddy," she chided, "zebwas don't wear Mexican hats!" "They don't?" I said, pretending to be surprised. "No, Daddy, and Afwica isn't in Mexico. It's on the other side of West Virginia an' its a foreign country." "Oh." I could not refute such juvenile wisdom. "Princess," said I, "I've been trying to find you a zebra, but this is not Africa." Dixie frowned and considered the matter carefully, then looked up at me. "Daddy?" "Yes, Princess?" "If I don't have a zebwa, who's gonna help me if a lion comes after me?" I stroked my chin and frowned, pretending to consider the far horizon as if it held a wise reply. "Princess" said I, "you've got me there." We rode on: I had her swing back around behind me. The Bear Killer paced us, flanking well out, a shadow in the gathering dark. We drew up on a little rise, looking at lights not terribly far off. The Bear Killer came trotting up to us, his muzzle dripping: he'd stopped for a drink, by the look of it. We held station for a little. I let The Bear Killer and Big Red both catch their wind. I'd not set a hard pace; Big Red had a nice easy gait, and he had a good bottom to his endurance, but I saw no need to test his reserves, and besides, I am getting old, and so is The Bear Killer. Big Red found a little graze and took a drink from what Mama always called a "crick," she never called it a stream: I backed him up a little, and we cleared the water without setting hoof in it: Mama learned that from her Navajo segundo, who told her about respecting the spirits of the water, and I'd learned it from her, and even The Bear Killer jumped the water when we did. I looked down and said "Bear Killer!" The big black curly furred mountain Mastiff looked up at me and smiled, and the sight of those fighting ivories had turned more than one man's heart to water: criminals who might've tried to knife a Shepherd or a Malinois turned pasty white when The Bear Killer strolled around the corner, all bristled up and looking like death on four black paws. His predecessor had taken criminals in his jaws on my Mama's behalf, and he never, ever came out in second place: this Bear Killer was his son, and though he was grey around the muzzle these days, he never lacked for speed nor strength. I looked down at him and said "Bear Killer!" and he looked up at me and snapped his jaws with a quite "whuff!" and I said, "SING!" The Bear Killer stopped and dropped his squared off backside on the ground, he taken himself in about twice as much air as his sizable frame could hold, and he pointed his grey lined black muzzle toward the cold, bright stars overhead, and he sang. I have no idea how a dog's howl can contain so much. He sang power and he sang authority, he sang sorrow and death and loss, he sang the joy of sharing our stove and the warlike charge into battle and he sang an ancient song of loyalty and companionship, and when he sang, he raised the hairs on my arms. A lantern showed ahead, and we rode in. "Howdy, Sheriff," a voice hailed me from the dark. "Seen any zebras lately?" "I have not seen a single one," I declared. "How about yourself?" "I found one." I felt Dixie's grip tighten and she began to twist and wiggle behind me, so I reached around and managed to catch the back of her collar as she came a-bailin' off the saddle: she hung in my grip, kicking and protesting "Dad-deee!" and I swung down and The Bear Killer came up and tilted his head curiously at the sight of Dixie, dangling in my gloved grip, swinging arms and legs and making the noises a little girl makes when she's being kept from a cherished discovery. I hoist her up and taken her around the middle: she was backside on my beltline and facing away from me and I said "You found a zebra! Do tell!" Now it was darkening enough I had to look close, but I could tell my friend had a grin on his face as broad as two Texas townships. Dixie didn't quite go limp but she quit trying to fight her way free: we walked, the lantern in the lead, then Bob, then Dixie and me, with Big Red and The Bear Killer flanking us: we came to his corral, and I set Dixie down. "Stand fast," I told her, and I might as well have addressed a fighter jet at the moment the catapult slings it off a carrier deck. She shot through the opening corral gate and streaked across the enclosure and skidded to a stop and looked up and the pole light shone down on her pale face and her eyes were huge and her mouth was open and she blinked and then she ran ahead and seized the Appaloosa around the leg and yelled "ZEBWA!" Now Dixie had no idea I'd already bought her Zebra-horse -- it was an Appaloosa, but a rare variant, striped instead of spotted, and damned if it didn't look like a little girl's idea of what a zebra should be -- well, if it was drawn with felt markers and the stripes were kind of wobbly and maybe a splotch here and there instead of uniform stripes, but that didn't matter none a'tall to a little ten year old girl who always wanted a zebra of her very own. Her Mama and I conspired to buy the horse, and the right size saddle for her, and of course Dixie had no idea we'd done this. All she knew was she had a Zebra-horse that rubberlipped pepper mint from her palm, a Zebra-horse that plodded placidly around the corral with its new burden on its back. That night was another one of those Daddy-memories an old man cherishes, and I did, and I spoke of it on my next communication with kinfolk on Mars, when I listened to the pale eyed Sheriff of the Second Martian Colony dictate into her computer, and I dictated my reply, and I added the video of Dixie riding that mild zebra striped Appaloosa mare. I did not tell her about Dixie pointing her Zebra-horse toward the whitewashed board fence, nor how Dixie screamed with delight as she went into low ballistic orbit for a glorious, stomach tickling moment, as her Mama turned her back and folded her arms and whistled Dixie the way she did when Dixie and I got in trouble together. I did wonder, when Dixie locked her heels in Zebra's barrel and Zebra kicked in the afterburners, when I leaned forward and yelled encouragement and Big Red streaked across the earth in pursuit, as I saw the striped Appaloosa soar through the air and make it look easy, and my little girl's delighted scream hung in the cold and frost-sparkled air ... I wondered if Old Pale Eyes felt that same way with his Angela. Somehow ... somehow I think he did.
  12. When my wife and I last ate out, we were the only couple not having our schnozz planted on our screen. Sadly, there actually were young people apparently out on a date, both eyeballs deep in their screens.
  13. Larsen T. Pettifogger has the right idea, and that's how we're going to do it .. TV Dinners. Our first Thanksgiving dinner was with Cornish hens instead of turkey, and my wife enlisted my aid and assistance in removing those frozen bags of whatever from inside the cavity. I ended up pinning the frozen carcass to the kitchen table while wearing a (clean) leather welder's glove, reaching into the cavity with water pump pliers, gripping the frozen giblet bag and swearing most heartily as I tried to murder that rock hard frozen giblet bag out of its shelter. She still kids me about that. Maybe it's because I was wearing a welder's glove, bright white boxer briefs and an irritated expression. (Hey, I have precedent for this state of undress ... John Wesley Hardin is reputed to have gunfought wearing no more than his hat!) In 23 years of wedded bliss, we've had one, count 'em, ONE traditional Thanksgiving dinner. We got so sick of left overs we agreed, "Never Again!" -- so before that traditional meal, and ever since, we've had anything but. We've had Thanksgiving stir fry. Thanksgiving tacos. Thanksgiving pizza. Thanksgiving lasagna. Thanksgiving beef stroganoff (yum!) And since we're both classified as Essential Emergency Personnel, we are subject to call, I'm on midnight shift before, during and after, and she has to work ... so TV dinners are the choice this year!
  14. Thou'rt wise to protect the airway! A good friend frosted a lung (his words) in cold weather, and was prone to pneumonia ever after!
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