Cheeks Update

I am sure the word is getting out but I’ve rec’d this communication:

Wesley Cheeks is NOT a Fairfax County police officer, he is a security officer employed by the Fairfax County Public Schools. You may go to to contact the School’s Department of Communicationand Community Outreach concerning this matter. They may also be reached by phone at 571-423-1200.

FYI and pass it along as necessary when you see the vid mentioned.

Round Here…

…kids don’t wear helmets to go outside.

I really liked this post by Pioneer Woman. One sees it here so often – the kids are made of sterner stuff. We’ve friends whose young boys are quite capable of every single manly task and duty necessary for survival sans the modern world. They work in the ungodly heat all day without a complaint, with smiles. We adore those young men and I like to think that if we had kids they’d be the same…

My stepdaughter used to be that way – so decisive and goal driven – fearless. For a few years she has floundered about, and I’ve been so worried and yet hands-off. She is quite old enough to care for herself. Still, Trooper and I have talked often about her and wished for better…

One must always parent from a distance when they’ve come of age. It is their life to live or ruin. And it pains me so much to see her taking chances with it but I’ve held my tongue. And now, perhaps, we can offer more support, more connections without feeling as though we are condoning a behavior we don’t agree with.

She called last week to relate her new path. When she was young she’d been interested in medicine and volunteered at a hospital for a long summer. She’d gone to college thinking it’d be her major. But then immaturity and foolishness lost that goal. She has been tinkering in her life since. Now, full-circle, she comes to the thought that maybe nursing/EMT work would be the thing. And Trooper and I heaved a collective sigh. YESSSS….

She WANTS to be a flight nurse (mixing her other love of flight with that interest in medicine). So…it is all quite promising. If she’d just let go that man-boy of hers…I know, I know…I shouldn’t judge like that but it is a fact and one that, for some reason, she is content with! Perhaps she gets to be in charge and it pleases her. But that sort of thing becomes quite disenchanting after a few years.

Oh, let her just Be Wise – that is my usual whispered wish…it ought to suffice.

Right Fucking Out Loud

I don’t know what was on his poster and I don’t care. It could say any damned thing in the world and be utterly offensive to me. But never would I have imagined an officer capable of this language.

“It ain’t no mo’…”


Right out loud, on camera. Damnedest thing? It’s the truth.

Sorrowful H/T to Billy

Addendum, unconfirmed by me:
He reports to Captain Deborah L. Burnett, Fairfax County-Reston Commander.
Contact page:


We woke this morning to a fine, cool dawn. I’d not noticed when I let the dog out for his daily sunrise salutation. It was early and I went back to bed. But soon after Trooper could sleep no more and we woke, each of a mind for a cup of coffee.

He called to me as I dressed, an urgent but happy tone. He stood at the back door. Ah, the breeze and the slight damp of the night rain…it was almost autumnal and we grinned like fools. “Coffee on the terrace, Sir?” I joked. And so we did – one of the best mornings we’ve had in ages.

This all followed a night of slumber – the deep and satisfying kind that comes after a long day of labor. And labor we – well, he – had. His friend needed a bit of assistance on the acreage he was clearing. We both prefer that sort of work wherein what you have accomplished is evident at the end of the day. The kind of work that leaves dust in the sweaty creases of your brow. What a sense of happiness comes from it…you would think the 100+ degrees would make it a burden. But instead one learns to lean in to a breeze and appreciate it. You pour that ice cold water from the cooler on a towel and it takes your breath away along with that top layer of filth.

We look at that kind of life with a sort of mixed sense of desire and resignation. It will all come to this, won’t it? “A southern boy can survive…” And what about when there is no icy water? Will a pond suffice? Or will it take swipes of alcohol on the back of the neck to mimic that cooling?

I’ve been working in the tomatoes, taking out foliage and suckers, hoping to force them into a renewed vigor for this best season. All the small ones are dried and won’t go to waste – they’ll work someday in a stew or chili. And if fortune gives us a new batch? Well, then the canning will be next. I lucked upon a slim book from 1938 that covers the approach from seed to shelf. A knowledge almost lost in today’s world where anything can be had at a shop within a few miles of home. But there is renewed interest in the kitchen arts with even charcuterie guides being sought.

With every plant, every day moving dirt, every stir of the compost heap – with every ancient motion resurrected in modern bones and flesh – we move from the deadend path to that fork and onto a rougher road that lets one continue, without dependence, perhaps some reluctance, but surely to a better place.