Nuthin', zero, zilch, zip, nada, scratch

By: Robin & The Time Traveler
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Time Traveler:

Tomorrow morning I have to turn in this column and here it is 7:40 p.m. and I got nuthin’ zero, zilch, zip, nada, scratch. I have made the usual preparations, stacked my college-ruled filler paper nice and neat, sharpened my Ticonderoga No. 2 pencils, eight usually and broke two of them in half. I can’t write with a long pencil because the eraser wobbling around at the top distracts the hell out of me so I just break them in half and sharpen the half with the eraser. All done and still nothing … Normally at times like this I rely on Bloody Parrot or Nigel and the rest of that crew to give me inspiration but they have converted the Pirate’s barn into a card parlor. Apparently Madam Kahli is dealing blackjack, Bloody Parrot is working the craps table, Nigel is running the wheel of fortune, Thermadore and Ridgecracker are working security. I’m not sure whether the Pirate is going to be able to contribute to this column because he’s working as pit boss down there. My next fall back is to fill the column with outright lies about the antics of Auburn’s royalty. A lot of space can be eaten up in a column putting a bunch of familiar names in it but I have been receiving death threats of late so I’m going to give that a rest for awhile. Until the Pirate puts in his two bits, I’ll have to go to my last fallback: my childhood.

As everyone who knows me is aware my formative years were spent in an abandoned mining camp in El Dorado County. Our house hadn’t changed since it had been built in 1862 and it didn’t even have what were called “licorice” lights. Since it was so isolated I rarely saw another kid my age until I was 6 or 7, I started school late and as a result most of the people I associated with had all been born shortly before or shortly after the Wright Brothers took off at Kitty Hawk. Over a few years I adopted their way of looking at the world because that’s all I had. So, blessed or cursed my view of the world reaches back before my own time and conversely their view of the world extends forward through me. So what would these people think if they could see our world as it is? If I brought them back probably their first question would be, “What the hell are these people so angry about? Looks like they got it pretty good to me. They have central heat and air, no more getting hot and cold and having to cut wood, superhighways so you won’t get stuck in the mud, washing machines with some kind of brain that does everything but change the baby, a radio with a moving picture that looks like it’s sucking their brain out through their eyeballs. These people got every creature comfort you can imagine and they’re still mad. Women hating men; men hating themselves, blacks, whites, Republicans, Democrats, even the comedians ain’t funny. Jack Benny was funny, Milton Berle was funny. This new crop ain’t funny, they are so mean if they was snakes they would bite themselves.”

Old Melvin Hoevet looked down at his gnarled scarred work-worn hands and continued, “Problem is these people have become a bunch of handwringing whiners because they had it too soft too long. If they had to struggle like we did they wouldn’t have time to worry about what they name football teams and other B.S. like that.” Then old Melvin turned and said; “I want to go home now; if I hang around any longer I’m gonna’ wind up kicking my dog.” Melvin got me to thinking, How much have we gained with our high-tech now world? I remember people bragging about the information superhighway. We were going to be the best informed people in history. Well it hasn’t happened. As Vance Sauter likes to say: “We’re drowning in information yet starved for knowledge.” We Google up some little thing we want to know, then promptly forget it because we didn’t have to learn it. Has technology provided miraculous cures? But how many people lived to be 100 years old in 1900? A few for sure. But how many live that long now? A few for sure. We’re still going to croak folks. Are we happier? The opioid crisis suggests not. Are we safer? In the ’50s there were as many guns per capita as now but most of the violence inflicted by guns was perpetrated upon innocent bystanding road signs. Now it’s high schools. Is it possible that with our embrace of an increasing online culture with all its advantages we are beginning to sacrifice our humanity? Do I have a solution? NAH! I just wanted to vent.

Portuguese Pirate:

So, we had the pleasure this past week of interviewing for the first time on The Newcastle Television Show a Realtor and my Broker/Manager Mike Bainbridge. Mike has years of experience in the real estate world and is great asset to the Auburn Realty, Century 21 office. Thank you, Mike, great interview. This week our guests will be Ken Tokutomi and Richard Yue talking history of the area and more. So, to hear this show, go to and listen to it on the podcast. If you haven’t heard it yet, AM 950 KAHI Radio :Voice of the Foothills” will be broadcasting on the FM band at 104.5 very soon. Just think about it, KAHI on AM and FM. Drive time just got better! Thanks to Jerry Henry, station manager and his staff of technicians that’s making this happen. Oh, The Newcastle Television Show airs every Saturday at 10 a.m. if you don’t podcast it. I’ve left Traveler in charge of the radio show or should I say, I’ve asked Casey Freelove, KAHI producer to “senior” sit him. Yeah, and that whole thing about a gambling hall in my barn, that’s one of Travelers tall tales. That group’s just working on some new games for Parker Brothers. No, really.

Time Traveler is right, and as Bob Dylan sang “These Times They Are A Changin’.” People just don’t seem to be able to find real contentment and if you find contentment it will lead you to happiness. Too many distractions in the world around us. Politics, health, violence here and abroad. So, I have found contentment. As you all read this I’ll be in Yosemite hoping to see Horsetail Falls in all its glory. I hear they liken it to the days of the firefalls off Glacier Point.  

"Each of you, for himself, by himself and on his own responsibility, must speak. And it is a solemn and weighty responsibility, and not lightly to be flung aside at the bullying of pulpit, press, government, or the empty catchphrases of politicians. Each must for himself alone decide what is right and what is wrong, and which course is patriotic and which isn't. You cannot shirk this and be a man. To decide against your convictions is to be an unqualified and inexcusable traitor, both to yourself and to your country, let man label you as they may. If you alone of all the nation shall decide one way, and that way be the right way according to your convictions of the right, you have done your duty by yourself and by your country; hold up your head! You have nothing to be ashamed of." — Mark Twain