Category Archives: Uncategorized

Super volunteer is sad & depressed

I live in my own little world

Sad & depressed I am.

Super volunteer Russel Ray just isn’t wanted anywhere. Seems I give a good name to bad volunteers, so I’m not wanted.

Apparently when I started volunteering at Friends of Cats, they thought, “Yeah, another volunteer. Whatever.” Then they discovered that I’m not like other volunteers. I actually like to do things, especially if no one else likes to do them.

Unfortunately, non-profits have paid staff, people who are paid to do things, so when a super volunteer comes along, paid staff get anxious about, perhaps, losing their jobs.

I’ve done the city animal shelter, Second Chance Dog Rescue, San Diego Cactus & Succulent Society, and now Friends of Cats. If they have paid staff, they just don’t want regular, consistent, good volunteers.

I was doing whatever the various staff asked me to do. First and foremost was laundry, which I kind of enjoyed doing. While washers and dryers were running, I would socialize with the cats. Sometimes I would get asked to help feed, empty trash, pick up and clean empty food dishes, scoop poop, whatever. Always willing to help wherever I could. Someone apparently took issue with my help. I think it’s the only three people who had never asked me to help them with something.

So…. On to my next volunteer adventure.

I have been accepted at San Diego Oasis. I will be helping K-6 students who have been identified as lagging behind their peers in reading. Reading Tutor training is October 16 & 17, and I think actually tutoring the students begins in late October or early November.

I also will be implementing a chess club at one of the Oasis locations, possibly both of them. And I have been approved for teaching a class on “Taking & Making Great Pictures.” Chess and photography won’t start until February 2019, though.

Meanwhile, here’s my last two picture from Friends of Cats:

Black cats

Black cats

Remember that if you have a black cat that spends time outdoors, bring the little one in for Halloween night and the several nights leading up to Halloween. There are cruel, mean, nasty people in the world who like to abuse black cats at this time of year.

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Friends of Cats

“The Hunger Games” and “The Handmaid’s Tale” come to life


On August 9, 1974, when Nixon resigned the presidency of the United States, I watched the peaceful transition of power from Nixon to Ford. Of course, they were of the same political parties, so peaceful was expected, notwithstanding the Watergate mess and Ford’s pardon of Nixon.

After each presidential election where the new president was of a different political party than the preceding president, I watched a peaceful transition of power, even when it was pretty obvious that the two people pretty much disliked each other. Something about the rule of law….

Whenever a presidential administration moves to far in either direction, left or right, the midterm election usually offers a correction – Clinton in 1994 with gays in the military, Bush in 2002 with weapons of mass destruction, and Obama in 2010 with health insurance.

I’m predicting an explosive correction on November 6, 2018, led by

  • women watching the Kavanaugh confirmation;
  • the young who have experienced mass death and destruction at their schools, movie theaters, and concerts;
  • minorities of all types, including LGBTQ like me;
  • and middle class (is there still a middle class?) people who have lost their health insurance due to actions of the current president (I call him Twitler because, to me, he is an incarnation of Hitler using Twitter as his main means of dividing the populace), lost their livelihood or a significant portion of it due to Twitler’s trade wars.
  • Sure, there will be Republicans (hereafter, “Regressives”) who win, but they will be in areas that have a supermajority of Regressive supporters. I’m going to go out on a limb here and predict that even in those areas, the spread will be much lower than usual, and you might even see some moderate Democrats or Independents elected in those areas where the lack of health insurance and income has hit particularly hard.

In today’s world, watching Twitler and his core supporters leads me to believe that there will be no peaceful transition of power this time. They don’t seem to care about anything Twitler does, as long as the blame is placed squarely on Democrats, women, non-Christians, immigrants, blacks, gays, and anyone else who is not straight, white, and Christian. They are violent, as seen in Charlottesville a year ago. They are violent as seen in mass shootings where the shooter always seems to be a “church-going Christian.”

The period between 2018 and 2020 will decide on whether or not there is a peaceful transition of power when Twitler is removed from office in 2020, possibly earlier through impeachment. I really think that Twitler and his ilk will not give up power through peaceful election results. I think there is going to be a Civil War, or at least a very bloody period to rival any war in our past history.

With the Twitler wannabe in Ontario, Canada; Putin and his social media army; and ultra right-wing regressives throughout the world finding a core group of people who hate everyone else, I think we are seeing “The Hunger Games” and “The Handmaid’s Tale” come to life.

With that depressing dissertation, I leave you with cats to help with the depression that I have caused. Starting and ending with, of course, Zoey the Cool Cat; all the other pictures are of cats at Friends of Cats where I volunteer for 1½ hours each day, Sunday through Thursday.

Zoey the Cool Cat welcoming me home
after I had been gone for three hours.
“Welcome home! Now rub my tummy!”
Zoey the Cool Cat

This little one crawled up on my lap, put his head on my chest,
rested his paws on my chest, and stayed that way for 20 minutes.
Friends of Cats

I love pictures of animals with their mouths wide open
because then I can anthropomorphize them.
Friends of Cats

What can be better than being welcomed by a black cat on a white pedestal?
Friends of Cats

One of the office cats, this one ready to answer the phone.
Friends of Cats

Cat yoga.
Friends of Cats

This little one is blind, yet still finds a box.
Friends of Cats

This little gal is in hospice care. She has scratched her neck so badly
that it is raw and bloody. She loves to be petted but it’s difficult to do
because of her condition. Poor little girl.
Friends of Cats

More cat yoga.
When you’re good enough, you can reach out and touch,
uh, Russel’s shoe!
Friends of Cats

Coco welcomes me to her house each day.
Friends of Cats

Anyone know what breed this cat is?
Friends of Cats

I often get up with sunrise intent on going outside and work in my gardens.
Sometimes, Zoey the Cool Cat has blocked my exit, forcing me to call
emergency personnel to rescue me. The only good thing is that I get to
go back to bed while waiting on first responders to arrive. And don’t tell me that I can get out through the windows. They are locked!
Zoey the Cool Cat

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post


Zoey the Cool Cat

Zoey the Cool Cat approves

I live in my own little world

Apologies to everyone for my prolonged absence.

I left home on July 23 with the intent of going on a long road trip that would end with me entering a state of permanent sleep.

I’m home, but I’m still suffering from severe depression.

My doctor prescribed Fluoxitine HCL, which is generic Prozac, but after reading the five pages of side effect warnings (severe depression, suicide….), I decided to work my way out of this on my own.

I need something to do in my retirement years.

I thought I had found it with the San Diego Cactus & Succulent Society as newsletter editor, photographer, historian, and all-around volunteer. Unfortunately, too many people were jealous of what I do and how well I do it. They convinced the Board of Directors, which three of the more jealous ones were on, to ask me not only to resign my positions but to leave the SDCSS completely.

As one person told me, “You are doing too much.”

Another said, “You haven’t earned your stripes yet.”

And yet another said, as he was telling me that the Board of Directors wanted me out, “There are other cactus & succulent societies you can join.”

I terminated my membership. I’m not one to stay where I’m not wanted.

I’ve run into jealous and petty-minded people all my life but not too often in charitable non-profits, and I’ve worked with Red Cross, American Heart Association, Muscular Dystrophy Association, American Cancer Society, Houston Grand Opera, Houston Symphony, San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, and many more.

Now I’m trying to find things to do to occupy my time. I’m working on a new photography web site, getting back to my gardening (now that the temperatures have dropped below 100 effin degrees), and, a couple of days ago, I signed up to volunteer at Friends of Cats on a regular basis for about 10 hours a week.

My first stint for them will be tomorrow at the nationwide “Clear the Shelters” event, 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Looking forward to it. I’m pretty sure I shall come home with billions and billions and billions of cat pictures.

Zoey the Cool Cat approves.

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Zoey the Cool Cat on her catio

SNIPPETS (7-22-18)



Zoey the Cool Cat has not been the same since Ninja the Visiting Fat Cat was here. She rarely plays; isn’t particularly interested in being with me, either on the bed or in the office, preferring the floor in front of the refrigerator; has gained 6 pounds in 3 months; and is “fur mowing” (more properly known as “psychogenic licking” the area around her nipples.

I have taken her to one vet and one vet hospital so far.


I am going to try one more vet tomorrow, but I fear she might be on her last legs, so to speak.

Yesterday, her bare tummy was so bad that I rubbed some extra virgin coconut oil (EVCO) on her. Everything else that I ever rub on her gets immediately licked off. She did not lick the EVCO off! Not even after 10 minutes, at which time I had to leave.

Saturday night she slept in my office chair, the first time she has done that since Ninja the Visiting Fat Cat was here. Here it is Sunday morning, and Zoey the Cool Cat still is occupying my office chair, resulting in me having to use a different chair so as not to disturb the little queen. I do enjoy having her by my side….

Zoey the Cool Cat in my office chair


2013 San Diego Comic Con InternationalComic-Con International ends today.

This will be the first year that I have not gone downtown to take pictures of the crowds, activities, and costumers.

Here are two of my favorites from past Comic-Cons:

Comic Con International 2012 in San Diego California

2013 San Diego Comic Con International


I have a Client moving here from Madison, Wisconsin. Apparently they don’t have cacti in Madison because he saw pictures of mine and has become absolutely fascinated by them. I spent five hours yesterday planting an assortment of Pachypodium lamerei for him. Here’s what my finished creation looks like. He and his wife are thrilled..

Pachypodium lamerei mass planting


Westfield UTC Shopping Mall in La Jolla is getting a San Diego Trolley station, so they decided to renovate and expand the mall at the same time, nearly tripling it in size with more ground floor space and a second floor throughout.

They started both the Trolley expansion and the Mall expansion a couple of years ago. I went over there to check on their progress and found that the Mall pretty much is going 100% succulents.

Westfield UTC is a very upscale (aka as “snooty”) mall, so I rarely go there. With this new cacti & succulent thing, I might have to go there more often.

Look at this beautiful succulent wall, and the plants are not fake. Westfield UTC has enough money to hire gardeners to make this succulent wall look good 24/7/365 in perpetuity.

Succulent wall


We all have seen honey bees.


Today, I present to you the infamous sunflower bee. These bees are so stealthy that I barely caught it with my smarty pants phone camera.

Sunflower bee


Back on May 1, 2012, I went exploring in the South San Diego County boondocks. I found the Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility.

Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility near San Diego

Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility near San Diego

I only found out today, while reading “Assassins” by Time Life, that Sirhan B. Sirhan is serving a life sentence at this Facility for assassinating Robert J. Kennedy back in 1968.

In the second picture, I either had a huge telephoto lens or….

….I got a wee bit too close. Yes, a dozen Facility security cars surrounded me to ask me what I was doing. I told them and showed them the hundreds of pictures I already had taken in the Boondocks. They let me go without incident.


Border Field State Park in San Diego County, CaliforniaFive years later, on May 13, 2017, (note to self: Don’t take pictures in far-away places in May), I went on an expedition to take pictures of the new Border Wall which had been built in San Diego County. I parked at Border Field State Park, walked two miles to the beach, and then walked south towards Mexico. There were two walls that extended about 50 yards out into the Pacific Ocean. I went past the first wall only to have a few billion Border Patrol cars descend on me. They told me that no one was allowed past the first wall. The area between the two walls is kind of like a demilitarized zone.

After that encounter, I should have just gone home.


I’m the adventuring type.

I drove along an unnamed yet publicly accessible dirt road from Imperial Beach to San Ysidro, about 7 miles, stopping to take pictures every 100 feet or so. Several Border Patrol vehicles kept passing me, turning around, passing me again, turning around, ad nauseum. Finally, several of them descended on me simultaneously to block me in, and asked what I was doing. I told them and showed them all the digital pictures. They said I couldn’t take pictures like that and offered me two choices, “Delete all the pictures or be arrested.” I deleted the pictures since I wasn’t too sure about that unnamed road being public property. I went the next road over and retook all my pictures.

Border fence


With all the computer hacking going on, many people are calling for a return to paper ballots for voting. The problem with paper ballots is that they are not hackproof at all. As proven in the past in many states, particularly Texas, Louisiana, and Illinois, it’s too easy to destroy them, flush them down the toilet, tear them up and throw pieces in different trashcans, lose them, steal them. And dare I even get started on “stuffing the ballot box”?

Paper ballots would make it even more likely that there could be a “Dewey elected President” headline. As it is, whomever is elected president on the day of the election is not true anyway, notwithstanding what the media says.

All 50 states require their Secretaries of State to certify election results, and that means including mail ballots, absentee ballots, provisional ballots, etc. Most, if not all, states provide for 30 days to do that.

I’m a permanent mail voter here in California. I get my ballot by mail but I can return it by mail, or to the Registrar of Voters, or to ANY voting location by the end of election day.

I also can check online to see if my ballot has been counted. I turned mine in on November 7, 2017. It was counted on November 15.

Fight organized crime


Back on May 5, I went as part of a group of 25 members from the San Diego Cactus & Succulent Society on a private tour of Western Cactus. I quit counting the number of greenhouses when I got to 27 because we stopped at what I call their “plant decoration” greenhouse. They were painting cacti & succulents, gluing on straw flowers, gluing top dressing in the pots, everything that I totally despise.

Painted plants

The owner and his General Manager gave us the tour. Finally, I asked the owner why they were doing that since they were an old, well-established, very large, respected nursery. He looked at me, raised his right hand and gave me the “Moulah!” roll of his fingers as he said, “Money! There’s a market for this, and we want to meet that market.”


Sunrise in the East San Diego County boondocks:

Sunrise in the East San Diego County boondocks


Someone failed math….

Someone failed math


Best. Fence. Ever. (Especially if you have an unwanted neighbor with unwanted children or unwanted cats and dogs invading your property.)

Cholla fence


If we pay attention we can learn something new each. and. every. day.

Cactus & succulents have sharp spines


Zoey the Cool Cat loves her catio, even when it’s 115°F out there.

Zoey the Cool Cat on her catio

Zoey the Cool Cat on her catio


Zoey the Cool Cat loves her catio, even when it’s 115°F out there.

Zoey the Cool Cat on her catio


Out here in the East San Diego County boondocks, the soil is a very dry, rocky, sandy clay.

It literally can take a couple of hours to dig a hole 12 inches deep and 12 inches in diameter, possibly longer if the rocks are, say, 15″ x 7″……..

Little rock


My first GIF of Zoey the Cool Cat!

Zoey the Cool Cat

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

SNIPPETS (7-15-18)



With Twitler and his ilk in the process of destroying everything that has made America great, I have been watching a lot of dystopian movies. I can highly recommend The Maze RunnerThe Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, and Maze Runner: The Death Cure.


Dracula’s cat.

Dracula's cat


I have spent time in Death Valley National Park in California where the temperature hit 123°F. I have spent time in Palm Springs, California, where the temperature hit 116°F. On July 6, the temperature on my shaded catio reached 112°F, making this the hottest place I have ever lived.

If R2-D2 was a bird


I’m a big fan of spirals. When I was young, I had some sort of drawing toy that allowed me to create all sorts of interesting spirals. I wish I could remember what it was called. Anyways, that interest in spirals easily translates to plants. My newest spiral plant is Cereus perianus spiralis. Look how cool this plant is:

Cereus perianus spiralis


Here are two pictures of Senecio rowleyanus in a beautiful glass container. I planted it in this container on May 2, 2018. You can see the new growth since May.

I exhibited this at the meeting of the San Diego Cactus & Succulent Society on July 14, 2018, and got more Ooohs and Ahhhhs and I love it’s than anything else I ever have exhibited.

Senecio rowleyanus

Senecio rowleyanus


Throughout my life I have been highly addicted to science, even if my own experiential evidence says otherwise. In this case, my experiential evidence and scientific evidence agree.

Science confirms dogs can recognize bad people


Speaking of spirals, the Mammillaria genus of cacti has some of the best spiral plants in the world. Every time I go to a cactus & succulent show, I see Mammillaria that I wish were in my collection. Recently, I got one, and at a very reasonable price, all things considered, because I know what plants like this go for in plant auctions. This is Mammillaria parkinsonii.

Mammillaria parkinsonii


The other day I went got to Home Depot at 6:00 a.m. and parked in the rear parking lot. As I was walking to the garden entrance, I found this little book on the ground.

How do dinosaurs love their cats?

I picked it up and brought it home. It has 12 pages. Each page is one-tenth of an inch thick. Here’s the text from inside:

How does a dinosaur play with her cat?
Does she throw pillows at it and act like a brat?
Is the litter box left while she watches a show?
If the kitty complains, does she give it a throw?
Does she hand it cat toys and then take them away?
Ignoring her pet after school every day?
No, a dinosaur cuddles her cat in her lap.
She pets it until it falls into a nap.
She remembers to feed it and give it fresh water
And changes the litter box just when she aughter.
She gives it new toys that she makes by herself
And also some catnip she keeps on a shelf.
She loves her dear kitty, and does every chore,
Strokes its fur, hears it purr—
Good dinosaur!


No nickname


Best Facebook comment ever:

“If someone offends you, just picture them naked and afraid. Or think about how miserable their lives must be that they feel the need to insult strangers. Or consider that they might be just having a bad day. Or consider that you might be misunderstanding a poster’s intent. Online forums are not for the faint of heart; it helps to have a sense of humor – or at least a sense of the absurd.”


After going to the San Diego County Fair every year since 1993, this was my first year as an exhibitor, which meant not only did I get four free tickets to give away, but I was eligible for a $20 badge that would let me get in at any time totally. free. It also meant that when it was time to take my exhibits home, I could scavenge all the free stuff that exhibitors and the Fair itself was giving away, like these eight bromeliads. I got two more the next day.
Next year I’m going to exhibit plants and photographs, and probably provide a couple of “Donated” awards, probably in the photography category.



Zoey the Cool Cat has not been the same since Ninja the Visiting Fat Cat was here from March 19 to April 12. She has been lethargic, doesn’t play anymore, and has put on lots of weight. She now is Zoey the Cool Fat Cat.

I took her to the vet last Monday. She’s like, “Meh.”

Zoey the Cool Cat at the vet

Nothing wrong with her. She’s simply becoming Garfield in her old age.


Where are the investigative journalists in today’s world?
The Dan Rathers,
the Walter Cronkites,
the Bob Woodwards and Carl Bernsteins,
the Ida Tarbells,
the Upton Sinclairs,
the Murray Marders,
the David Halberstams,
the Seymore Hershes,
the Daniel Ellsbergs,
the Florence Graveses,
the Dana Priests & William Arkins?


Mega yacht parking lot in San Diego harbor. Four mega yachts. Most I have ever seen at one time here.

Mega yacht parkingl ot in San Diego

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

SNIPPETS (7-1-18)



My little Fockea edulis that has two seed pods on it…. and me never having seen the flowers…. and not knowing who the father plant is….

Have been keeping an eye on my little girl.

She had flowers! And since she needs someone of the opposite sex to have progeny, she obviously thought that I was going to take her to another cactus & succulent show so that she could have more unprotected sex.

Fockea edulis flowers

Fockea edulis flower


I was sad to drive by my favorite Sears store and find out that it was closing. I took a detour, parked, and went inside. The store was about 90% empty.

I don’t know what we’re going to do with all these empty buildings. Maybe ICE will turn this one into it into a child concentration camp…. a #TrumpCamp. After all, we’re only about 15 miles north of the border with Mexico. Yahooooooooooooo! Let’s hear it for child concentration camps!

Sears store closing, El Cajon CA

Sears store closing, El Cajon CA

Sears store closing, El Cajon CA


In 1968 I got to go to Hemisfair in San Antonio. Spent 50¢ on a computer personality analysis of my signature. Spent $2 on an analysis at Post Oak Mall in College Station TX in 1997. Spent $4 on an analysis at the San Diego County Fair on June 14, 2018. Here they are. All three of them. And all three eerily accurate.

Anavac Hemisfair signature personality analysis

Televac Post Oak Mall College Station TX personality signature analysis

Televac 2018 San Diego County Fair personality signature analysis


Best things about my smart phone (Samsung Galaxy S8):

  1. Makes and receives phone calls
  2. Google Maps—Doesn’t matter where I’m going, how near or how far, Google Maps is tracking me, know where I am, knows where I’m going, and knows when I’m going to get there.
  3. The ability to block phone numbers. O.M.G. My phone used to ring every other minute with calls from
    and probably a few others that I have left off.
    All of them from Google.
    I have blocked all of their numbers and now I get auto rejected calls every other minute. The phone doesn’t even ring. Just automatically hangs up on their asses. I hope the person who invented call blocking has a lifetime supply of margaritas.


San Diego Zoo animals


I have learned to check out anyone who sends me a friend request on Facebook. For the longest time I was getting them from women who wanted to have sex with me or trade nude pictures. Uh, no. Occasionally I still get one from a Twitler-supporter. Why, I have no idea. So I checked out a friend request today and found this as one of his posts:

“I refuse to put any libtard up on a pedal stool.”

I declined his friend request. If he’s not going to put me up on a pedal stool, he’s no friend of mine!


I got a free plant at a huge nursery the other day because it was on the ground in the midst of about 100 huge Agaves planted in 35-gallon wood boxes. No one knew what it was so the manager said, “Just take it.”

When I put it in the Cacti & Succulent Identification group, all I got were obscene comments, obscene videos, obscene GIFs, and obscene memes. So I deleted my post.

Today a friend told me what the plant is. Lophocereus schottii forma mostruosa (smooth form). AKA “Big Penis Cactus.” Well, okay then. Now I understand the obscene comments.

I wonder if the ladies at the nursery knew what it was but no one wanted to tell a guy that it was a “Big Penis Cactus.” I could see how that might be a little awkward.

I had an oblong rock which looks very nice next to the Lophocereus schottii forma mostruosa (smooth form).

Lophocereus schottii cv. Big Penis Cactus


Back in Spring 1976 I took Economics 301 at Texas A&M University. I had Professor Phil Gramm (Google him). He had a tenured position making $125,000 a year, but quit to go into politics. I despised his economics but I do remember one thing he said in class: “All politicians lie. You just have to determine whose lies you like the best.” For most of my life, I was a Me! Me! Me! person, preferring Republican lies. Since April 1993, I have been an Us! Us! Us! person, prefering Democratic lies.


Poor little ground squirrels. In the morning many of them line up at the fence separating their open space preserve from my cactus/succulent gardens. I love watching them, as long as I’m not watching them eat my plants. I can see their little brains whirling and dreaming, trying to figure out how to get to the banquet…..

Ground squirrel on the other side of the fence


The Cactus & Succulent Society of America had their annual Show & Sale at The Huntington Library, Art Gallery, and Botanical Gardens June 29-July 1. As many times as I had been to The Huntington, I had never been to the Desert Garden. It’s at the far side from the parking lot, and after visiting the Library and the Art Gallery, I just never made it to the Desert Garden. This past Friday, the Desert Garden was my goal. I was amazed. Wow. Just wow. Here is a video created from 149 pictures:


If you need a quick laugh, watch the CATalunia Boy’s Choir.


I bought $350 worth of cacti & succulents at the CSSA sale at The Huntington. I took them to the car while my husband, Jim, sat in the shade among the ferns doing whatever on his smarty pants phone. Snapped this picture without him being aware that I was anywhere close by.

Jim Frimmer at The Huntington


My wise old grandmother always was out on the dance floor at family reunions, dancing up a storm. As she told me in 1978, you’re never too old to rock ‘n’ roll, proven yet again this past Thursday when I went to see The Ideas Rock ‘n’ Roll Trio (friends of mine) at the fundraiser for the El Cajon Animal Shelter at the Downtown Cafe in El Cajon, California. The El Cajon Animal Shelter is where we got Zoey the Cool Cat back on September 21, 2007.


By far my favorite plants are the Stapeliads. This book, which I bought a couple of days ago, is the BEST. PICTURE BOOK. EVER.



Even though I’m a huge fan of margaritas and Agave tequilana, I’m not averse to trying new things. So at the Huntington Botanical Gardens on Friday, I got a taste of potato rum. I liked it. I brought it home with me. Here it is. Agave potatorum. (It’s proper pronunciation is pot-a-tor-um. I like potato rum better.)

Agave potatorum


The clock in my doctor’s office last week.

Doctor's clock


Hello Farmers my old friend. I’ve come to talk with you again….

Or as a friend said, “Good insurance is like a bridge over troubled water.”

Simon Gurfinkel Agency


I like to work in my cactus & succulent gardens for a couple of hours in the early morning before it gets too hot. Sadly, the path to the gardens was blocked this morning. I was stuck inside.

Zoey the Cool Cat


One of the reasons why parking is scarce and at a premium in Southern California is because some people, when they get a parking spot, absolutely refuse to give it up.

Parked car


Every morning when I work in my cactus & succulent gardens, I have a little friend who is close by. He watches me intently, and every time I plant something where he couldn’t see it, he would climb up the block and peer over. He is so friendly that I can get him to eat bugs out of my fingers. Eventually I’m going to get a video of that.

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Russel Ray Container Collection

I live in my own little world

It’s been so long since I logged into the back end of my many web sites that I have forgotten how to do it, at a time when I need to do it to upload a video that I don’t want to put on YouTube.

So here I am at my WordPress site which, surprisingly to me, will let me upload a video as “media.”

This is a video of the many plants that I grow in containers without drainage holes.

I am very anti-drainage-hole in plant containers where I control the watering. Once Mother & Father Nature get involved, or the neighbor’s landscape watering system sprays water over the fence onto my property, all bets are off, and I’ll happily accept drainage holes. For more on why I am anti-drainage-hole (just call me ADH Russel), see About Us on my new A+R POTTERY web site.

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post