From Ice Melt to Melted Cheese

If we were having a beer, you’d be the one who is late.

“Hi Cheryl. No sign of the old man yet?”

“Nope. That’s OK. Whenever he’s here before you, he grumbles about your being late.”

“Well, I won’t be grumbling. And I won’t be waiting, I’ll have a Brooklyn.”

“I had anticipated that. Brooklyn Lager in a tall frosty glass.”

“Thanks. Here’s to your new blog.”

“Aw, thank you. It feels good making a new start.”

“What the? You started drinking without me?”

“Of course I did.”

“So, that means you opened a tab…”

“Nope. His beer is on the house because he was one of the first people to follow my new blog.”

“I would have followed if I knew there was a free drink involved.”

“Your support is overwhelming. Wine? Bourbon?”

“I guess that means this is on me. Oh, what the heck, I’ll have Bourbon.”

“With a glass of seltzer and a separate glass of ice…coming right up.”

“Wait, Cheryl, what’s the stuff next to that bottle? The bottle with the horse on top.”

“That’s Blanton’s. You’ve had it before, our distributor doesn’t always have it.”

“You say I’ve had it before…I don’t recall.”

“By the time you decide, I’ll be ordering a second beer. If you don’t remember having it, it will be a new experience. Think of it as a benefit of a failing memory.”

“My young friend is right, I’ll go with the Blanton’s.”

“OK, here’s the ice, the seltzer and a nice pour of bourbon.”

“Thanks Cheryl.”

“So, why were you late today?”

“I was wondering if you were going to ask.”

“I just did…care to answer?”

“It’s a long story. I had to spread ice-melt on my driveway.”

“How long a story can that be? I mean scoop-spread, scoop-spread.”

“I had to find the bag, and then I had to find something to open the bag with, then I had to find something to scoop it out with.”

“I see. I just use a bucket.”

“You scoop it out with a bucket?”

“No. I put the ice-melt in a bucket. Actually, I just use the salt-sand mix from the town.”

“How’s that?”

“Our town has a pile of the salt-sand mix they use on the roads that residents can take. I fill up a couple of five-gallon buckets each year.”

“They just give it to you? For free?”

“Not really… they bought it with my property taxes.”

“I guess. But my taxes are way higher than yours and my town doesn’t give us squat.”

“Cheer up, it’s not like a bag of ice-melt is going to break the bank.”

“It’s not the cost, it’s the weather. This stuff caught me by surprise. It was fifty-two degrees yesterday.”

“Probably a good thing. If it had been colder, that rain would have been a huge amount of snow. We’d still be digging out.”

“Instead, we’re worrying about flooding. Do you get water in your basement?”

“We never have, but I don’t take that for granted.”

“What can you do?”

“I put drain tile in to route the water out away from the foundation, and I clear the snow that piles up against the house.”

“So that’s why you end up with Mt. Maddie.”

“Yes, we’ve always had the snow piles, beginning with Mt. Mitzi.”

“How many Irish Setters have you had?”

“Four. Mitzi, Reilly, Mollie and Maddie.”

“So how come you’re not drinking in an Irish pub?”

“What kind of question is that to be asking him? And you wonder why you don’t get a round on the house.”

“No offense intended, Cheryl.”

“Offense accepted. Would you boys like another round, perhaps some food? We make a very good Shepherd’s Pie.”

“I’ll have another beer.”

“I’m still nursing this bourbon. Shepherd’s Pie sounds good, but it’s a bit much for an afternoon snack.”

“How about some fried mashed potatoes? They’re stuffed with the same spicy meat we use in our Shepherd’s Pie.”

“That sounds good. Is the order big enough to share?”

“As an appetizer, maybe, if you were eating with your wife”

“What’s wrong with you? Sharing an appetizer…”

“OK then, two orders. They come covered in a melted queso sauce, you boys OK with that?”

“I think we can handle that.”

“I was going to say that.”

“Late again, old man. Late again.”

Linda gave us quite the challenge for Stream of Consciousness Saturday:

“Your prompt for #JusJoJan and Stream of Consciousness Saturday is as follows: read closely. When you’re ready to sit down and write your post, look to the publication (book, newspaper, permission slip from your kid’s teacher, whatever you find) closest to you, and base your post on the sixth, seventh, and eighth word from the beginning of the page. Enjoy!”

Since we’re at the bar, and not counting the title and the price, the sixth, seventh and eight words on the Specials Menu are: “fried mashed potatoes.” And please be sure to check our Cheryl’s new place. She’s not only the best bartender in WordPress, she’s a great writer/photographer/poet/friend.


  1. Always liking winter photos – believe it or not, I really miss it – even after all these years!
    Went to your friend’s new site, but no ‘Like’ button was activated on the the one post.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Our winter took a spring turn. 58 degrees, rain and high winds. Supposedly heading back down to 8 degrees tonight.

      Cheryl’s just getting the new site established. I’m sure the like button will show up. Thanks for visiting

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Fried mashed potatoes with meat? Sounds yummy with a cold beer. We were out having burgers last night at a little place and there was a Yuengling sign on the wall. I did have to smile. :-) Cheryl’s new blog is lovely with great photos, but please ask her to consider a ‘like’ button. I always read but don’t always have a comment to make. I know, that’s hard to believe. :-) We had wicked fog down here for two days too. Hope you and Maddie have a few walks between the rain and ice.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Those fog shots are phenomenal! I like the sound of those fried mashed potatoes, but don’t think I didn’t see the Yuengling next to the clam chowder. Brooklyn, eh? Trying to put one over on the Gentle Reader, eh? Man, I have GOT to get to the Tunxis Grill, but only if Cheryl is pouring.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Wow, you have a sharp eye. I thought to myself: “I wonder if anyone will notice that I’m drinking Yuengling…” – Not trying to put one over, but yes to taking a little creative latitude. They are talking about putting Brooklyn back on tap, and they have it in bottles, but they run out (which is good-shows it sells).

      I do like the fog, but this stuff was so thick, I oculdn’t see anything across the river looking into Hartford.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Fried mashed potatoes…yum! My dad used to take leftover mashed potatoes and fry them into a pancake. Meat was served on the side. It’s one of those delicious childhood memories of food.

    The fog/river photos are great. Almost as great as cheese (for those who can eat it).

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Awww I’m tearing up here. 😊Thanks Dan. Ummmm but I got stalled at Blanton’s. Had to pinch myself going again. Lol. It’s turned cold again here, down to 28 and windy as hell out there. Good reasons to stay in and write I’d say. I must say you are such a Boy Scout, always prepared. That is impressive. I agree with your frugal friend. That’s pretty cool the city lets you take the mix. And that there aren’t shootouts over it. 😉 Happy Weekend. Good to see Maddie nice and warm! I love the fog shots too. Hmmm…fried potatoes stuffed with shepherd’s pie….and no one has set the kitchen on fire yet. I’d say there’s some talent back there. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • According to the comments, you need to wire up the “like” button. I’ll be sure to mention it again, an employee benefit of sorts. Blanton’s can slow you to a halt. None for you until you make some progress 😏

      The fried, stuffed mashed potatoes looked very good. I didn’t have them because it was so cold, I wanted the chowder.

      You have to have ice melt on hand. If you need it and don’t have it, you can’t get out to go get it without risking a bad fall. I ended up at the ER after one of those.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Dan, your fog photos are beautiful. When I first read the title of your post, I thought you were gonna write about grilled cheese! Which sounds good to me today–we are stuck in the 20’s all week. This is Florida, man!!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. oooo – Blanton’s! I tried to get a bottle at Christmas and it was rare as hen’s teeth around here. I had to settle for my old standby, Woodford.

    I don’t know why I’ve never gotten around to visiting Cheryl before now … thanks for the link.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Tee-hee! Using the menu as the source for the prompts. Love it, Dan. But as much as I love mashed potatoes, I’m hesitant about the idea of frying them — never heard of that. Although, I guess it would be rather like the “potato patties” my family made when I was a kid. Made from left over mashed potatoes. Funny… now I want potatoes… :D
    Thanks for the intro to Cheryl’s new place. Hugs!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. The fog photos looked like something from a movie. Wonderful! The good weather news was the wind today, drying out all the melted snow. I can’t believe how quickly 14” can melt and then dry. I so enjoyed the post, especially Cheryl and her new blog.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Those lights in the dark are so dramatic and pretty.
    I have used a bucket, too. This winter, though, twice, I’ve ripped open the bag on my back porch and just started sprinkling. I definitely prefer the bucket method, but where has my bucket gone?!? Has it been used to dig in the dirt? Have the bunnies gone sledding in it? I’m sure there’s a child to blame.
    I’ll skip on the fried mash, but I’ll dig into the shepherd’s pie!
    I’m deeply disturbed that we don’t get salt and sand mix. Just got notice my taxes went up, too. Really, I should at least get a new empty bucket! lol

    Liked by 1 person

  11. The “photos in the fog” are the best. Love them all. But, of course, Maddie with her “”unstuffed” broccoli gets the blue ribbon.

    I too grew up on fried potato patties, which were a product of leftover mashed potatoes. I’ve made them myself many times in our 56 year marriage. Good grief, 56 years!! 😱 No wonder I’ve been dreaming about divorce! Lol.

    Great post. Always get a kick out of your conversation with Cheryl and the “old man”.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. As you know, I always enjoy your conversations, but I fell in loved with the last line in the first post I read today, and in this one I was smitten by your dogs’ names. They are so poetic in the order you wrote them:Mitzi, Reilly, Mollie and Maddie. My mind instantly sang in response:” three of them girls, one a laddie,”( though I don’t know if that’s true)..

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! That is true. That’s a very good response.

      That’s the order in which they arrived. The male was a big boy. My wife is only 5’2” he loved her and was jealous. When I would kiss her goodbye, he would stand up and lick the kiss off her face.


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