Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Day 1226

It continues to baffle me why everything I buy seems to get more expensive, while everything I sell seems to get cheaper. It hardly seems fair. The landscaper came out today to fertilize and treat the soil for grubs. He charged almost exactly double what I thought he'd charge. I take my car to the shop again tomorrow and I fully expect the same thing to happen. Appliance repairmen, plumbers, roofers, and auto mechanics all seem way too expensive these days. It wouldn't be so bad if people still wanted to pay for writing and photography. They don't. Everybody tends to think "there's an app for that" when it comes to creative endeavors. They all think they could do it themselves if they just had a bit more time. Clients only appreciate what I do after they've tried to do it themselves. They still don't want to pay, unfortunately.

Even though the landscaper is expensive, I asked him to give me a bid for re-doing the front yard when he was here today. The back yard looks so good now that is seems a shame not to have the entire yard look the same way. The landscaper still seems like a bargain compared to the roofers too. I still can't figure out why the cost of putting on a roof has gone up so much in the past ten years. My personal theory is that people don't get a new roof now until there is hail damage and their insurance company will pay the bill. It's probably a lot like health insurance. The roofers have probably learned that when people aren't paying with their own money, they don't really care what the price is.

It's a two way street though. Some of my clients think I'm too expensive. I think I'm still an incredible bargain, but it doesn't really matter if they don't agree. Probably the roofers are the same way. They've got to make a living too; paying the same ridiculously high real estate taxes, health insurance premiums, and utility bills that I do. Even though I hate paying through the nose for everything, I have a lot more sympathy for the landscaper, the roofer, and the plumber than I do for the folks on public assistance sitting home watching their big screen TV. At least these small business entrepreneurs are trying to earn a living on their own.

Now that I've taken almost two years of wildflower pictures, I've started to notice that each new variety starts to bloom at almost exactly the same time as it did the previous year. The master clock that controls nature is really pretty amazing. Today, the Antelope Horns came into bloom, right on schedule. These tennis ball sized clusters of small green flowers are among my favorites. They are so precise, they almost look like miniature radio telescopes made for ants.

Want to place any bets on whether my car actually gets fixed tomorrow?  I'm going to explain how the engine continues to run real rough between 1000 and 2000 rpm. They're going to nod like they know exactly what's going on. Then three or four days later, I'm going to pick up the car from the dealership and notice on the way home that it's running just as rough as it was before.

Sadie is today's Dalmatian of the Day
Watch of the Day


  1. Is that what that flower is? Antelope Horns? It's beautiful! Have to go look it up.

  2. John! That appears to be a milkweed, Asclepias viridis!

    1. You're right! This is indeed a variety of milkweed. We call it Antelope Horns down here in Texas. Some people call this a Spider Milkweed too.