Reflections in a Mirror (While Shaving): Part 23

• Nomination for the most influential person in our lives? … Whoever gave us our last haircut leaving high school … Most of us were so impressed we’ve kept the style forever.

• I so admire people who are naturally positive … I spend too much time in a snit trying to buy into that up-beat s— …

• When did my swagger become a waddle?… a swaddle?

• What is it about ukuleles and mariachi guitars that make my teeth vibrate?

• Another class when I was staring into space instead of listening … How should you correct a wrong? … Head-on, direct ? (We all know that’s the best approach but none of us actually do it) … Ignore it forever? (I like it) … Pretend it didn’t happen? (Workable, if the wronged person wouldn’t keep bringing it up) … Give things a chance to simmer down? (My personal favorite).

• March 31, 1993 – January 10, 2011 … Sophie the Wonder(ful) Cat … thank you for letting us share your magical life, little girl.

• Suggestion for 2011 … stop reporting the names of the loonies shooting innocents … just label them Coward #1, Coward #2, etc.

• I’m positive wine bottles are getting smaller.

• If there’s a clothes god, please let me dress appropriately for my age … and I want my rally thong to be leopard.

• I have a theory…we’ve all ordered things that look terrible when they arrive. Recently a jacket apparently looked better on the handsome, thin, stubble-bearded model than on me …

• My theory is the design of the garment is changed after the order is taken … I’m still working on the motive, but there simply is no other explanation … hey, I have stubble.

• Guilty pleasure … liver and onions … I have to eat it alone … It’s a little like lamb in that I don’t want to think about how it got to my plate … and it doesn’t taste anything like chicken.

• I bought a jar of marbles at a second-hand store, drew a ring and missed every shot, BUT what fun …

• OK, you flick this little glass ball with your thumb … never mind … Just don’t play “keepsies” with anyone until you know the rules.

• I was trying to convince a salesperson that my pants were the right size … almost made it until I had to breathe …

• The same salesperson muttered, “Shall I bring you the right size?”… Not without substantial foreplay, you little #@&%…

• Dark woods … strange noise … curl into fetal position or run … call me Bugs.

• I can’t make this #/&% up … I destroyed two iPhones within an hour and my computer threw up, destroying several years of emails. I told a friend that’s why I missed an appointment … He didn’t believe me and hasn’t spoken to me since. Hell, I’m with him … I don’t believe it either.

Doug Mudford is a lawyer and partner at Barr & Mudford, with an emphasis on serious personal injury. He may be reached at Barr & Mudford, 1824 Court St., Redding, 530.243.8008. Send questions for “That Lawyer Guy” to

Doug Mudford’s photo illustration by Michael Burke of Redding. Click here to see more Michael Burke photos.

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Doug Mudford
is a lawyer and partner at Barr & Mudford, with an emphasis on serious personal injury. He may be reached at Barr & Mudford, 1824 Court St., Redding, (530) 243-8008, or
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7 Responses

  1. Avatar Darcie says:

    So glad you are still 'reflecting in the shower' – your musings always make me laugh!

  2. Avatar Budd Hodges says:

    Doug, I too love liver and onions and my kids say "yuck, you like what?" Let em' sneer and grimace. That leaves more for me.

    When I was in grammer school, the 6th grade I believe, drawing a ring in the dirt and playing marbles was all the rage. You'd have purees and agates and of course your favorite tahl or shooter.

    I made the mistake one day to play keepsies with a good shooter, Johnny Minoletti, probably the best on the playground. That was the day I lost almost all my marbles. Moral of the story, never play marbles with a future lawyer.

  3. Avatar Doug Mudford says:

    Hi Budd…if you shoot marbles with with a current lawyer I'm sure you'll fare better. When the weather clears, let's draw a ring and have a shoot-off. I'll share my newly purchased jar of marbles with you. The winner gets to keep the marbles but also has to make a small donation to Women's Refuge.


  4. Avatar Shayne Hale says:

    I knew there had to be some rules or procedures for the age old game so I poked around on the internet and found some! As for the liver and onions, I'll side with "Yuck" as well.

    Although this is the basic way to play marbles, there are many regional games, and new games can be made up on the spot using these simple playthings. This version is usually called ring taw or ringer, although it may also be referred to simply as “marbles.”

    Each player starts with a large shooter marble measuring 3/4” in diameter and a few 5/8” regular marbles. The number needed depends on the number of players in the game. It is possible to play marbles with anywhere from two to about half a dozen players. Here’s how to play marbles:

    1. Agree on the rules. Before starting the game, all players should agree on the rules. The main one is whether they are playing “for keeps,” in which the winner of the game gets to keep all the marbles used, or “for fair,” which requires all marbles to be returned to their owners at the conclusion of the game.

    2. Draw the playing area. The game of marbles is played inside a ring drawn on the ground. This is normally drawn with chalk, although not always. The ring should be about ten feet in diameter, with a one foot ring drawn in the center. Each player puts in the same number ofmarbles into the smaller ring; there should be about a dozen marbles in total.

    3. The lag. The first step in playing marbles is called ‘lagging.’ The players roll their “shooter” marble towards a line about ten feet away. The player whose shooter lands nearest the line will have the first shot, an advantageous position.

    4. Throwing the marbles. During the game of marbles, the marbles can either be thrown or they can be “knuckled,” which requires a knuckle touching the ground as the marble is rolled. There are various strategies for releasing your shooter into the ring with the most force. The object of the game is to have your shooter knock the other person’s marble from the ring.

    5. The winner of the lag shoots their marble. The first player shoots their shooter toward the marbles already in the ring. If you knock a marble from the ring, you pick up that marble and get another shot from wherever your shooter landed in the ring. It is possible to win the game by shooting all of themarbles out of the ring in consecutive shots, without giving your opponent(s) a shot. If you fail to knock a marble out of the ring, it is the next person’s turn.

    6. Continue shooting. You can shoot your marble from anywhere outside of the ring, similarly to how the game of pool allows play from any side of the table. If your shooter remains inside the ring, you can enter the ring to shoot your shooter from that spot on your next turn.

    7. The end of the game. If your shooter remains inside the ring and someone else knocks it out of the ring before your next turn, you are out of the game. The person who knocked your shooter out of the game gets your marbles. The game continues until either one person has knocked the majority of the marbles out of the ring, or only one person still has their shooter in play.

  5. Avatar Proud Family says:


    My personal theory about hairstyles is that we keep the one that reminds us of when we felt the best, aka, when we were having the best sex. Obviously for a lot of people the 80's were a busy time!

    Your column just doesn't come out often enough!!!

  6. Avatar Doug Mudford says:

    Thank you Proud Family. Your theory may be true but I'm not sure where that leaves those of us who were and are follically challenged.