Humidity is here. Nevertheless, it looks like that a great Saturday is about to break; even though I slept in this morning and am now dealing with a late start. Even so, my hot mug of Java both smells and tastes great (which means that I must not have Covid since I’ve been told that smell and taste tend to disappear).

Today Derek, now a High School graduate, will participate in the senior parade (a driving event of several miles). I suggested to Kirstin that she open the tailgate and have Derek sit there and play his Tuba. She mentioned that he talked about it. So the old guy, moi, came up with an even more excellent idea; one where he stands up with the sunroof open and play from that position. Brilliant! Now hope that the Austin rains stay away.

   

‘Streeteries’ – is a new term for restaurants offering additional outdoor dining space in the areas in front of their establishment; the ‘Nati has gone into this ‘streeterie’ concept in a big way – 70 restaurants/bars to date.

It’s gained this expansion by changing traffic patterns, and even using the curb lane in some areas. The city maintains ownership rights over the property, but the design of the space is by the bar or restaurant. At first this was done because of Covid as an assist to eateries, now it’s a permanent thing. I think it great.

The Sports brain trust – has as a starring member in the loudmouthed, opinionated (going off half baked) MBA player LeBron James. LeBron tweeted the photo of a Police officer who ended up shooting a young black woman who was about to stab another young black woman in the neck with a butcher knife. Then put in the text reading; “you’re next”.

A nearby small West Side neighborhood bar in our town, Linnie’s Pub, published a Facebook post to its customers; “If anyone wants to watch an NBA game, don’t come to Linnie’s Pub. We will not air them until LeBron James has been expelled from the NBA.” The owner said he didn’t care what opinions the players held, but just play the game. The Facebook entry garnered 39,000 likes.

LeBron got back into the fray with an entry which reads; “Aww Damn! I was headed there to watch our game tonight and have a drink! Welp.”

Last laugh goes to Linnie’s Pub, they’ve never been busier as a result of their stance.

A memorable experience – happened this week. Local and national talk show host, Bill “The Great American” Cunningham, challenged the Village’s star athlete and school’s Softball pitcher, Madi Ogden. Madi would test Willie’s mettle – she would get ten pitches.

In an age of so much negativity this ‘little wrinkle in time’ was a perfect event for us to listen to. The Village of Williamsburg is under 2,500 residents and its single K through 12 school is less than 600 students. Their women’s Softball team is rated number 13 in the nation! This spring Madi had thrown her 4th perfect game and 9th no-hitter (2.7 strikeouts per inning) and the team is 18-0, throwing what in baseball would be the equivalent of 98mph. Add to that the fact that she has batted .700 with 77 hits, 85 RBI and 15 home runs, and she’s had a 29-game hitting streak. Oh yes, she’s also a member of the school’s Volleyball team.

And no ‘silver-spoon’ for this gal; at age twelve she was in a car accident requiring brain surgery and pelvic work. Lost a year of school, and it was questionable whether or not she’d even walk again.

BTW, ‘Willie’ who is just a few years younger than me, back in the day was the nearby Xavier University’s Baseball team captain. Both teams are called the ‘Wildcats’.

Don’t we all need a ‘perk-me-up’ story like this every now and then? Don’t you just love small town America where traditional values still mean something?

Atlas Obscura – back prior to a Postal Service, prior to a pre-made ‘envelope’ existing, and prior to texting, living in 16th century Europe also required privacy and surety of one’s correspondence. There existed something called “Black Chambers” here mail was intercepted, unfolded, read, copied, and sent on its way.

Over the years; “letter writers folded their correspondence in such a way that it became its own envelope—a process … dubbed “letterlocking.” Letterlocks could be simple, just a series of quick folds without any sort of adhesive. But they could also be incredibly complex, even booby-trapped to reveal evidence of tampering.”

It wasn’t until 2000 that this ‘letterlocking’ was made note of when; “a 17th-century trunk of (undeliverable but stored) letters bequeathed to the Dutch postal museum in The Hague (which) contains an extraordinary archive of 2,600 “locked” letters sent from all over Europe.” Then not until MIT got involved that some treasured letters were able to be read. So finally, the code to these letter-locks was discovered.

A bit of forgotten, fascinating, history.

   

Fini –
• The Cicadas have arrived. Front-line volunteers most of who will end up on various bird’s ‘buffet’ tables. Never fear though. Next week hordes of the little beasties will show up (along with their incessant noise).

• Read on my Citroën 2CV group was this statement; “I can confirm that in extremely wet weather my 2CV is faster than my Citroën Dyane6 despite having half the power.” Miss being able to access Our Duck!

• Mentioning Citroën, this photo find shows a Citroën DS re-made as a tow vehicle. Pretty stunning work.

• Have you wondered how Hamas had all those millions of $$ of our tax monies to spend on rockets (over 2,000 shot into Israel) after Biden gave $235-million in “aid” to the Palestinians? Actually it was referred to as; “U.S. restores assistance for Palestinians…”

• Bank of Canada is finally beginning to note that Canada has a growing risk of a debt-fueled housing bubble as % of mortgages that are 4.5x income keeps climbing.

• Mentioning a new housing situation. Jason & Cathy now own a new home – and its lovely!

• Then in Chicago, the Mayor, Lori Lightfoot, is celebrating her second year by showing off the ‘glories’ of racism by allowing a one-on-one interview with a journalist of color only. You go girl!

• This week on a series of news clips from New York, Montreal, London to name a few I heard the phrase “Allahu Akbar” being chanted. Am I correct in assuming that this translates into “We love Jews”?

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, be healthy!

Dirk

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