Cali Crazy: A Texan’s take on the Golden State—part 6—Automatic trash can dumpers, sage ceremonies and one inconvenient corpse


California garbage men—I mean, sanitation technicians—never had it so easy. They grab a roll-around plastic can, wheel it from curb to truck, place it in hydraulic hands and push a button. Voila! The truck lifts it, dumps it and sets it back down. They then wheel it back.

As long as it’s not too far from the curb. Or too heavy. Or too hard to get to because of a snow berm.

No more sore biceps or achy backs and plenty of juice left over for twelve-ounce curls come quittin’ time.

In Texas, the sanitation technicians are known as garbage men who, rain or snow, hot or cold, can be counted on to step around or over kid’s bicycles to empty your light—or heavy trash can.

California law require us to use (and buy) specially designed cans that make their modern can-dumping marvel and energy saver possible. More importantly, it keeps worker’s compensation claims down, which saves 2017 budget money to spend on important stuff like:

—$30M to protect illegal aliens from deportation

—$118M Startup cash for new marijuana tax department

—$6B additional funds for state employee pensions

Now that’s thinking. Safety first. Less wasted dollars on injured waste management workers in our California counties. More for wasteful programs created and managed by wastes of good legislative seats in Sacramento.


Sage is all the rage

This Texan recently learned a little somethin’ about sage. It’s an herb used by California hippies to ceremoniously cleanse homes, businesses, and ventures of any and all sorts from evil spirits, negative vibes and other spiritual drags.

In Cali-speak, sage has come to mean not only the plant but also the cleansing ceremony. When a local mentions “a sage,” other locals know it as a cleansing, purging, spiritual event.

After a little digging, I uncovered its origins in Native American rituals whereby medicine men used the plant to cleanse and as incense. Around here in our little town, a sage is performed by a resident spiritualist who is typically also a massage therapist, homeopathic practitioner and/or enthusiast, and green everything proponent.

This is how I learned about a California-style sage. Rumor has it that a sage practitioner was performing the ceremony for a buyer’s new property prior to his and his family moving in. Apparently the seller was also present. During or after the ceremony, the seller noticed something in some brush he initially thought was a deer corpse. Turns out the dead deer was a dead dude.

Oops. Once the remains were removed and an investigation completed, this may have called for a re-sage. Or maybe a super sage. I guess positive thoughts and good vibes are no match for partially decomposed bodies.

Silly me

I always thought sage was something you put in your stew. Or your wise old grandfather who saved you from doin’ dumb things cuz he’d done ’em when he was a young man and learned the lessons for you.

Sage. Live long enough and in some different places, you may just learn something new. Gotta laugh at life and silly herbal ceremonies. Especially here in California.

Now there’s some sage advice for ya.

10 Replies to “Cali Crazy: A Texan’s take on the Golden State—part 6—Automatic trash can dumpers, sage ceremonies and one inconvenient corpse”

  1. Pj Uber, my friend, you certainly like to poke at California. Now it’s a comparison to manly garbage men in Texas?

    Speaking of manly men how about Texas Congressman Tony Tinderholt who proposed a bill that would allow women and providers to be charged with murder for an abortion proceedure with no exceptions for rape or incest. The policy would “force women to be more personally responsible for their sexual behavior”. Now there is a “manly” man who could really use some “sage” advice, specifically on how babies are made and the actual horrors of rape and incest.

    Speaking of sage, Texas might need a cleansing ceremony over the whole state – Texas has the honor of having the highest number of pregnancy-related deaths not just in the United States – but in the entire developed world. The rate for Texas is 35.8 deaths per 100,000 live births as of 2014. Japan’s is 5 and California’s is 7. Maybe it is all that manly testosterone contributing to some cosmic hormonal imbalance.

    Now if we are talking about tax waste how about the new wonderful thing brought to us by those who supposedly hate taxes – Taxpayers buying jobs and being on the hook to pay that ransom for years. Awesome. Our President and Vice-President came up with that for Indiana. Now, we will see it in Wisconsin. Taxes that are paid to line pockets of those who are already rich and powerful – good. Taxes that end up going to average Americans – bad, wasteful. Got it.

    My personal favorite waste of taxes is Trump’s wall. This will give him one more chance to lift his leg and mark some more territory with “yuge” gold letters that spell TRUMP because he is all about the visual.

    Peace pj Uber

  2. I find it quite delicious to poke fun at California—at its lawmakers and those who think they’re doing a bang-up job, mind you—not at its garbage men. I think they’re just as manly as those in any other state; they can’t help it that they’re biceps are being atrophied by California’s safety measures ;-). I chortled heartily as I read my post to my Cali wife (so did she) before publishing it. Just as I am chortling right now ;-D.

    I read about Tinderholt’s bill. Bad idea because even though morality is legislated at all levels of government, you can’t scare or threaten people into responsible or right behavior. Sadly, abortion on demand is here to stay. Transforming hearts and behavior is God’s job, and only he can do it. All we who respect life’s sanctity can do is lovingly persuade. That bill should go nowhere, in my opinion.

    I read about pregnancy related mortality in Texas and found that the Maryland study that published these numbers MAY not be quite accurate. Here’s an interesting article about it:

    Overall, your premise that my post celebrates Texas’ manliness may also be a tad inaccurate. I’m spoofing California lawmakers (and sage hippies) not California manliness. I find the men up here in Northern Cali just as manly as anywhere else including in Texas. Although I have noticed a troubling lack of personal responsibility and integrity among a few business owners up here.

    What do you mean about taxpayers buying jobs?

    Wait…isn’t Mexico paying for that wall? I thought…;-).

  3. Now I feel bad about poking at Texas. I read that Texas is in harm’s way from a hurricane. I will pray for all.

    Not actually buying but being on the hook for years for the tax breaks. Carrier in Indiance and Foxconn in Wisconsin. Now I read that there might be a problem because the Foxconn facility might be located close to Illinois and Wisconsin doesn’t want workers from Illinois to take the jobs because Wisconsin taxpayers are the ones on the hook.

    1. Don’t feel bad. Thanks for your prayers. Being on the hook for tax breaks? Personally, I’m all for leveling the playing field for American businesses as far as foreign and domestic regulations and taxes go. But I say let the market decide which countries offer the best locations for factories and such. If American unions make it difficult for companies like Foxconn and Carrier to build their products here in the USA, then the unions need to be more flexible. Can you tell I’m a free marker capitalist? I am one, but I do think government should regulate businesses to dissuade them from taking advantage of people who can’t protect themselves.

      John or whoever moderates his blog posted my comment today—along with a few others. But he hasn’t replied to any. Which is no fun at all. He’s taken all the spontaneity and fun out of the social element of his blog. Not too mention the instant gratification. How am supposed to come up with silly names and tease his groupies? 😉 I wonder why he went all the way over to the other extreme from inmates running the asylum to rigid and clinical control? Maybe his agent wanted him to clean it up before the release of his book. Do you like his blog this way?

      1. He did write a new blog saying he spent time with his family. He usually doesn’t go this long without releasing posts. I had started posting less before the switch. It does kill the spontaneity but I, for one, need to step back sometimes.

        For awhile I was letting the diva and her crew drive me batty. I had to force myself to take a breath. His new blog goes on about making time for the important things which is good, but he has done this before. Then the next 5 blogs gets everyone riled up again. Only a few, and you know who I mean, feel compelled to rebut every post and tell everyone how wrong they are. It gets tedious very fast. I am surprised he didn’t rebut you – maybe he is too busy right now, because he has had a snarky remark for the silliest of things. I was looking forward to your names.

        Most people have a life outside the blog. It is good when someone like you comes along and maybe starts a new conversation. I like hearing new things. I don’t learn a thing when I talk to myself. I agree with and enjoyed your post.

        I do hope your friends and family and everyone else in Texas can stay out of harms way. It is times like these that show us what is really important in life. So hug your family and friends and I will hug mine. I do anyway and I am sure you do too. I ❤️ hugs.

        Peace pj Uber

        Your friend Jo

        1. Just to be straight—the diva is Gloria, right? Because Sandi is divaesque, too.

          I’m not surprised JP didn’t rebut me because, though he has a kind heart, he’s inflamed it with the political rightness (and bigotry) of his and his party’s social positions. (Refer to the definition of bigotry here.) His passion drives him to a self-righteousness (as mine makes me prone to do the same thing) about what he feels is most important given his blending of politics, social causes and his perception of Christ’s nature. I’m not sure he knows what to do with nice, yet probing questions about his modus operandi. My comment is hard to snark attack. Even Charles had difficulty ;-).

          Have you noticed how little JP mentions God? This is typical of hard-core emergent church types. God represents judgment and cruelty according to their interpretation of the OT description of him. It’s the same with NT writers: Whatever doesn’t fit in with emergent churchers’ creation of an all-love, all-the-time Jesus who meets US where we are and respects OUR truths (as long as they’re loving) is explained away as merely opinion (Bible as a library of books motif) and/or poor translations of scripture. Charles trumpets this a lot on the blog. To him, only “fundies” believe the Bible is God’s word.

          BTW, What I mean by self-righteousness is a firm conviction that one is right and his or her adversaries are wrong. I don’t mean it as a self-righteousness before God whereby one is better than others spiritually. I mean it as the dictionary defines it:

          self-righteous |ˌself ˈrīCHəs| adjective
          having or characterized by a certainty, especially an unfounded one, that one is totally correct or morally superior.

          Does this come across in many of JP’s posts? Especially the rile-uppers?

          My family’s getting a lot of rain but are safe up in the DFW area. Thanks for your thoughts and prayers for them. I think I’ll call my mom today and see how she’s doing :-).

          1. Pj Uber,

            Yes Gloria is the diva. Don’t ever call her Gloria she will call you an abuser or a rapist. Gloriamarie. Even an honest typo doesn’t excuse that sacrilege. Gloria, Sandi, and Kathleen are the ones I call the mean girls club. Sandi is the one who said she was leaving because she doesn’t like anyone who disagrees with her being able to post. Almost daily it is quite the melodrama. Charles is just an ass (sorry). He makes cruel juvenile jokes about people. He uses foul language and lately he posted that sometimes when he gets angry he wants to kill someone and then listed Joe, leslee, and some preacher. Then he said he didn’t really mean it. John lets him get away with all that stuff. If someone else on the “wrong side” did that the outcry would be deafening.

            That time I emailed John I said he showed bias for having different rules for different people. He wrote back that I showed bias and I needed to check myself.

            I have posted a few times asking how can you fight bias with bias, hate with hate. That is why the mean girl club doesn’t like me. My high school was never like this. But I find it fascinating sometimes. I even tell myself I am not the crazy one. Ha

            I am not familiar with all the types of religions. Sometimes leslee does come across that she has the only key to heaven. She always talks about how she looks forward to the hereafter. One time I asked her if she ever thought that for every second she thinks about the rapture that is one less second she is not appreciating the wonderful blessings she has here – her husband, her children, her talent as a musician. She never responded to me maybe she thought I was disrespecting her but I really wanted to know how her religion addressed that.

            They proclaim to be Jesus followers and they say they must treat others like they want to be treated. But they are actually mostly horrible. They attack the person, not their views. I don’t understand the distinction of separating Jesus from God. That whole thing about every single person who didn’t vote for Hillary – Gloria has a list of what she calls them – that they must repent is just bizarre to me. Many who post feel that way.

            John is very passionate about mixing politics and religion.

            Hope your Mom and the rest of your family are doing good.


          2. Hi, Jo
            Are you okay. Haven’t seen any comments from you on that blog. Taking a break? If so, I don’t blame you. Hope all is well.

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