It’s Saturday morning and a good one to you. Jason and Cathy will be ready to move into their new digs a little later this morning. It’ll be almost 90 today (and reach a solid 90 from tomorrow through Tuesday). But that is nothing compared to our west coast family. The group in Portland will be facing 113-degree weather – this in a place where less than 30% of the homes have air conditioning.

I’m focused on the west coast this AM because we’re drinking Seattle’s best for a week or two; I can smell it brewing.

I’ve been queried regarding activities on the corner of Chaos & Mayhem. Actually (except for some loud cars – muffler & boom box) it’s been relatively quiet. Quiet that is, other than earlier this week when there was some activity three doors over. I’m still unclear exactly what happened.

Quotation:

”People who think a tax boost will cure inflation are the same ones who believe another drink will cure a hangover” ~ President Ronald Reagan

Our current President, a four-dimensional thinker, ponders otherwise – at least that is what he whispers into the microphone.

We’ve had some amazing characters vying for the top echelon of our government. Remember when the diminutive Massachusetts governor, Michael Dukakis, who decided to pose as a ‘tank commander’? That disaster wrecked his 1988 campaign.

A few were self-inflicted ‘flameouts’, think Wilber Mills and Jeb Bush. However, my favorite was independent Ross Perot. Here is a parody of ‘Ross’ on the campaign trail, where at the County Fair he had entered a cow ‘Mooing’ contest:

Le Gendarme en Balade – OK, now it’s totally ridiculous. It’s almost TWO years since I’ve seen or driven our little ‘Duck’ (Citroën – Deux Chevaux) with the idiotic Canadian/USA border closing. It’s so wrong, so political, and this has to change!! And soon!!

Even brother George sending me glowing newspaper articles on the 2CV; these are no substitutes.

Now I find myself sitting around watching scenes such as these, over and over again:

kauwgom – while walking through neighboring Norwood earlier this week I turned a corner just where the street was being repaved. The strong smell of hot tar hit me. And, before I could take a single step, a flashback to my early youth came into focus, complete with smell and taste. The mind is an amazing thing.

The time was in the Netherlands during their reconstruction shortly after the end of the Nazi occupation. I had zero knowledge of anything called chewing gum (‘kauwgom’ in Dutch), never even knew something like that existed. But as kids go we were intrepid discoverers and there was never a shortage for fun, and exploration. In our case part of it was messing around construction areas and coming across hunks of hardened tar. We’d pick a small chunk and begin chewing on it. And that was my flashback; the smells and taste of this tar as it softened. Kinda cool. And the best news of all, we all survived.

Vince’s Scholarship Already it’s the fourth year of this wonderful tribute. The winner (this year it’s Jady Chen at the University of Central Florida) is selected for a variety of attributes, i.e. green solutions, etc., the stuff which made Vince the ‘star’ in his field.

I reflected on Vince’s life and how it permeated through every facet. How the care and nurturing of his children was no different to what friends, family, and coworkers expressed at his Celebration of Life.

I also reflected on his unstoppable drive. His work to achieve his PE accreditation and Leed certification. His ongoing training to then achieve the elite status of being an Iron Man finisher – twice over. Even him beating me to the top of Rock Candy Mountain at the lake; while carrying a backpack with his drone and gear – a little over two months before his passing. Love you guy!

Blissful moments – The other day I climbed on our balcony, lit a cigar, and was magically transferred into the nasty world of the middle-east. I listened to a discussion between professor and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and Yaakov Katz the Jerusalem Post’s editor-in-chief on his book; “Shadow Strike”.

2006 and Syria was in the final stages of building a nuclear fusion facility out in the desert. Israel’s Mossad had gotten wind of it. The facility had to be shut permanently, without opening another middle-eastern conflict.

What an amazing tale. How the final solution was brought about not by a team, but by individuals; our President and even more importantly, Israel’s Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert. Knowing that the demise of Israel was on the brink and even though Olmert faced jail time he never disclosed what had happened, and how by a mere sliver the nation of Israel was preserved. Considering the capability of our current leadership, could such a feat be managed effectively today? I know what I believe and am not optimistic that it could.

Interested in a listen? Click Newt’s World – Gingrich360 for 35-minutes of delight. No the time right now, just open the Ramblings whenever; it’ll be here waiting for you.

South of the Border (Down Mexico Way) – And no, not a Patsy Cline tribute; but after 90 plus days our Border point-person VP finally made it – sort of. Not saying it was merely a photo-op but looking at the map, it did seem like a convenient stopover between DC and a weekend home. Had she only stayed long enough to answer journalist’s questions we might have found out the details.

Calling Kamala’s visit to El Paso a visit to the Southern Border is the equivalent of going to Olive Garden and saying you’ve been to Italy ~ Lauren Boebert

Fini –
• A few days ago we celebrated midsummer. Oak and Holly once again have fought for the land with the result that now the days will slowly start to shorten.

• Happy Birthday today to Tevita, many, many more.

• Three days ago it would have been Alan Turing’s birthday. It’s estimated that his WWII efforts in cryptanalysis resulted in the invention of the “universal Turing machine”, and thus the ability to break Nazi military codes. He likely saved as many as 14-million lives for which he never got the appreciation as deserved.

• Thought I’d share a tangible change from a year ago – you’ll understand.

• The theory of Relativity as explained by Albert Einstein himself; “when you sit with a nice girl for two hours it seems like two minutes. When you sit on a hot stove for two minutes, it seems like two hours.”

• Yesterday June 25 (in 1903) was the birthday of George Orwell (born Eric Blair). I’ve not come across anyone who demonstrated in a more clever way the exposing of tyranny, oppression, and the deep injustices of his (and by default, our) time. Read this remarkable man’s opus; Animal Farm.

• This week Presidential words to live by from President Biden; “Those who say the blood of Patriots, you know. And all the stuff about how we’re gonna have to move against the government.”… “If you think you need to have weapons to take on the government you need F-15s and maybe some nuclear weapons.”

• A brilliant way of displaying which of our 50 states did best and worst during the Coronavirus pandemic all in a single chart (by analysts at Hamilton Place Strategies). Best states are found in the Lower-Left quadrant both in rates of Covid deaths and job losses. Worst place to be is in the Top-Right quadrant, these states experienced the worst outcomes. The remaining states are ‘middling’ to various degree.

• Reported by the far-left Los Angeles Times with this headline; “The California Legislature on Monday approved a $100-million plan to bolster California’s legal marijuana industry.” What, legal marijuana in trouble? Could taxes and regulations have something to do with it? Maybe?

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, and head outdoors!

Dirk


F

06 19th, 2021

The ‘F’ title stands for several things, but first it’s “Good Morning, bring on the coffee.” Some might want a bit of a teaser, so here goes. Look for things such as; ‘F’ for fun, ‘F’ for fear, ‘F’ for freedom, or even ‘F’ for a happy Father’s Day.

I have to point out that a (small) portion of this was written last evening. To the north of us Tornado touchdowns have happened; we’re in for some hefty weather and flooding during the night, especially since warning sirens can be heard. I thought I’d get a head start in case of sleep disruptions.

Quotation:

”Hard times create strong men, strong men create good times, good times create weak men, and weak men create hard times>” ~ G. Michael Hopf

In today’s parlance ‘men’ should have been entered as ‘persons’ and would include both ‘child-bearing’ and ‘sperm donating’ persons equally.

Pumas – Last week I wrote about the most excellent band Kirstin and I watched. That then reminded me of that wonderful television comedy show of years ago where it too featured a bit of music; WKRP in Cincinnati. Here is the clip I had in mind, this starring Howard Hesseman as the uber cool Dr. Johnny Fever:

[also, RIP Frank Bonner (Herb Tarlek on WKRP) 2-28-1942 ~ 6-17-2021]

F = Freedom – at least I hope so; slight rumblings that the border to Canada will open in a matter of a few weeks. Wait, that’s wrong, now the opening was just moved back to the end of July – again. It just doesn’t stop!

What has happened to Canada under Covid-19 lockdown and with it most of the Charter Rights afforded their people? Now we see the tossing of Preachers in jail merely for holding open-air services, this while leadership hobnobs without hindrance – this includes arresting a national opposition political party leader. ‘Approved’ gatherings for BLM and hockey are just fine; none of it is ‘Science’, it’s all a power play.

F = Fish – Tevita and Adrianne spent a week at the beach. While there you just don’t watch fish, you go out and fish and make use of the fish market. And that they did. Back home they treated us to a fish and crab dinner. It was spectacular. Thanks guys!

F = Folly – watching the pathetic performance of our President at the G-7 and later during his Putin sit-down; couple these with the MSM covering of the events, and it makes for a sorry show. How can a leader in the space of a few minutes lose track of what nation he was talking about and inserted Libya when he was talking about Syria – three times over. The man looked visibly confused or tired, not certain which.

Later in the one on one with Putin, cheat cards in hand, we walked away from the table without a single solid piece gained. Not even a release promise of the jailed Americans. Afterwards Putin must have ordered his Cossacks a special round of Vodka.

The single concrete piece of news from the event came yesterday when the White House announced that the $100-million military aid package to the Ukraine had been halted.

F = Fear – I am old enough to remember Vietnam. The lives lost, the lives changed, and the crazy withdrawal which left thousands of our Vietnamese allies in fear for their lives. I remember desperate people hanging onto the last helicopters leaving.

All the final chaos as we withdrew from a war we had little business entering and no will to win as it was politically driven. Now we are ready to repeat history; this time in Afghanistan. 20-years, two trillion dollars, and more than 2,000 service members lost.

Our ‘drawdown’ is poised to leave behind are 170-180,000 of our allies, translators, and those who worked with us under an ‘umbrella’ of trust. Sorry, you lose. These “are about to learn that trusting America was a bad bet. Many will be condemned to torture and death as the reward for their service” (American Thinker, June 18, 2021), as that country is poised to quickly return to a brutal, medieval, theocracy. Already the Taliban has overrun one of our former bases.

F = Fun – Most notably the importation of sausages from the UK into Northern Ireland under the Brexit rules. Each sausage must be inspected. And wouldn’t you know, this sausage nonsense reared its ugly head just as President Biden and PM Boris Johnson set their sights on re-doing the 1941 Atlantic Charter between FDR and Churchill. Great fun for us news junkies.

But actually, I wanted to place the brand new, independent, British news service, GB News, under the fun column. Britain has its BBC, Canada has the CBC, and we have PBS. All three, without hesitation, are heavy left leaning enterprises – meaning that viewers get a single viewpoint of each news cycle. Canada shovels $1.5-billion towards their CBC. Britain does it better by pushing to the BBC approximately (in dollars) $5-billion (PBS receives +/- $1.35 per citizen per year).

GB News, touting itself as “Britain’s news channel” has at the head of their presenting team Andrew Neil (as revered as Walter Cronkite was here). It promises to present ALL viewpoints and even some lighthearted FUN stuff. Early ratings show promise; 166K for GBN, 133K for BBC, and 57K for Sky news.

So why bring up this British focused entity? Simple, it’ll be a great way to gain a new perspective on both International and news dealing with our own situation with high quality in depth content. [I got connected through my mobile app store.]

Fini –
• The last surviving officer on D-Day, first wave, turned 99 this past week. At the time a lieutenant, he retired as Major General John Raaen.

• This is for Greta T. (climate wunderkind); this past week we just broke -81° Celsius (-113.8 °Fahrenheit) in Antarctica.

• The Science is settled. Global warming might cause the ice caps to grow. Global warming might cause the ice caps to shrink. We’re not certain, so either way….we nailed it! Dr. James E. Hansen, NASA-GISS

Twitter does it again. Dr. Peter McCullough, MD, MPH, FACC, not an anti-vaxer, but also a believer in early Covid-19 intervention with alternate treatments was ‘scrubbed’ from Twitter – even with 17.4K followers. Just as a point of interest, he’s the most cited medical doctor on COVID-19 treatments at the National Library of Medicine, with more than 600 citations. Yet Twitter does not allow any open debate of controls and treatment. That’s what the “nation’s town square” is all about – censorship. So wrong!

• Still keeping track of our current VEEP’s border travel – after all she is our border Point Person. This week she was spotted here.

• This past week in 1902 the Musical, “The Wizard of Oz”, opened in Chicago.

• Jason and Cathy have a massive Oak tree in their new backyard. This week they had an arborist company work on it. A team of three crawled over all 50’ of this beauty.

• Think on this: During Black history month Amazon (while amplifying Black voices) kicked “Created Equal” the amazing story of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas (born in poverty in the segregated south) off their site.

• Think on this #2: “Palestinians fired 4,360 rockets at Israeli civilians last month, now Israel is giving them 1.2 million Pfizer vaccine doses” ~ Hillel Neuer, Canadian-born lawyer, executive director of UN Watch.

RIP Rudolph (Rudy) Moreira, MD, 1943-2021, born in Cochabamba, Bolivia. Rudy was the amazing surgeon who successfully operated on Marcia for breast cancer over 20 years ago. At the same time he and I played on the same soccer team. BTW – Rudy was a much better player.

• Anybody remember Dr. Timothy Leary PhD?

• June 17, 1939 France held its last public guillotining when Eugen Weidmann, a convicted murderer, was put to death. This spectacle was held outside of the prison Saint-Pierre.

• Cancel Culture has also taken hold in Canada. This past week the 1895 statue of Sir John A. Macdonald, Canada’s first prime Minister was hurriedly removed after the discovery of his role in their residential school system.

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, and head outdoors!

Dirk


Out of the Dark

06 12th, 2021

We’ve now switched seasons. We’ve moved from that time of the year when people who wouldn’t ride bicycles because it was too cold now won’t ride bikes because it’s too hot ~ Bike Snob, NYC

I sure had great hopes to at least post something last Saturday. The time in Austin precluded that. I guess that what that means is that I had a very busy, but great time, in Texas. So now, even though it being about as muggy as can be here, the coffee is ready and smells good. Let’s get started.

With the weather here in the ‘Natti, I made it home as planned by being chauffeured from the airport by Maddie and Lyft (Marcia felt that the struggle with rain and the ongoing bridgework delays, getting into KY was a bit much). OK. So I walked through the door about 1½ hours later than anticipated; that wasn’t Maddie’s fault.

Getting home when I did also meant it was right at the height of Cicada season. Tree trunks look like they have beards created by the shells of the little beasties. People, some wrapped in plastic rain gear, are fun to watch making wild dashes for their cars with arms flailing. Even prior to departing I had the leaf blower busy several times to make the front walk passable. I recorded the incessant mating ‘chatter’. It was from our balcony and in the background what you hear are cars, the rest; well you know the rest.

In the Dark – What are the odds? What are the odds that in a large commercial venue, a major event (i.e. a High School graduation), goes DARK at the exact time that the ceremonies begin? And, the craziest of all is that the event was supposed to be outdoors, but due to weather was moved into Austin’s Delco Center. For Derek his graduation will go into the memory books.

   

Most of it was held under the lights of hundreds of cell phones with sound powered by a single Bull-Horn. What did come out better than ever, was the voices of a couple of thousand people, singing our national anthem a cappella– in the dark.

And, you know what? None of the ‘hiccups’ mattered at all. All present were thrilled. The students were happily delighted. The guests were chatting with those around them. It was a great occasion.

Man in Black – Derek made a late play to head out to his final school Prom. Labeled “Austin Weird” it was made open to all seniors, date or no date, formal or ‘whatever’, none mattered. There went Derek, at 6’3” plus, wearing his size 15 shoes, looking very GQ’s. Mom proud. Opa delighted. And Derek, who took it all in (nervous?) stride.

Black Pumas – After multiple delays due to weather and Covid Kirstin, with a couple of tickets, invited me to join her to an outdoor performance by Austin’s own Black Pumas. The band are 4X Grammy Nominees. Hence, we stood with what was estimated at roughly 2,000 other fans in Stubbs backyard (their outdoor venue), for a wonderful performance by this red-hot band. I had a blast. Thank you Kirstin.

   

Not familiar with the psychedelic soul sounds of the group? Have a listen. If you are familiar, skip past the video clip.

Nearly Black and Green – is what the fence at Kirstin’s back yard had turned into. Only one solution; Power Wash the thing. Off we went to some outlets to select the exact machine needed. At Lowe’s we hit the mark, and later back home it did the job.

   

While I was there we got a solid start. Kirstin finished it after I went home. That, plus some gutter work, and a re-do of the paint on the back door; her backyard had never looked so good. In fact, so good that what had to be the best meal of my stay was a dinner of authentic Asian Ramen eaten in the backyard’s pergola in the new favorite spot; the backyard.

Fini –
• Welcome to the family (courtesy of Alex and Taryn) is baby Varenna Summer Sun Pastoor. I am told that she’s all that Alex, Taryn, & grandparents Art and Jolene could have wished for.

Boarding my homebound flight reminded me of the way they move cattle into the slaughterhouse.

• The current G7 in Cornwall is happening in a world where the group is hanging by their fingernails seeking to stay relevant. Their ‘family’ photo reminds me of watching elderly Chinese getting ready for the 5:00AM morning program of ‘qigong” meditation exercises. What a team!

• Now that a series of texts by Hunter Biden have come to light. These, where he casually keeps on using the “n-word; it appears that “white supremacy” propaganda by the media has immediately shifted over to “climate change”. Hmmm, very interesting.

• What the insanity of the past year and a half has brought to light is that our enlightened culture has ‘progressed’ from testing ill people (to prove that they were ill) – to testing healthy people to prove they were healthy! Why? Because our so called scientists told us that was the science. Disagree? That made room to be censored. Wacko stuff indeed.

• Every day this week more negative stuff on Dr. Fauci has appeared. This week it was dollars sent to the Wuhan virology Lab. Possibly for something called “gain of function”. This man has bounced around more than a marionette doll worked by a seven year old.

• Kamala Harris’s trip to Central America even had CNN declare it a disaster. Lester Holt pinned her to the fact that she had NOT been to the border — wasn’t she appointed our Border Tsar? As the photo shows, Lester was wrong on that count.

• Were you aware that it tales over 100,000 lbs. of materials to make one electric car battery? Guess how many of these rare earth mines are owned by China?

• Love this paragraph by Australian Peter Clack: “The history of earth’s geological past is well understood. Science reveals an endless pattern of rocky surface plates moving, colliding & sinking. Science records this creation of the world, life & its ocean driven climate. Life may be based on CO2, but climate is not. It’s a hoax.”

• My favorite photo of the Three Stooges. I always loved their totally juvenile antics.

• Walking between my hotel and Kirstin’s home I had to cross this spot. For some silly reason I caught myself looking up each time I came by this place.

• First view of the ‘Big Muddy’ as I headed home.

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, and head outdoors — walk a block!

Dirk


It’s a busy Memorial Day weekend coming up, so now (it’s Friday after dinner) I’ll spend an hour or so organizing The Ramblings. Saturday morning early I have to feed and water Rugby who’s ‘staycationing’; while the rest of his pack is away, ‘vacationing’. This will allow me to be somewhat regular with my posting – are all four of my readers, reading this? What I’m trying to convey is that I care.

Then, as the day progresses it’ll be a visit to nearby Spring Grove Cemetery where my parents are both buried. Though neither served in any uniformed capacity I think it important to also remember them and others like them, who during the occupation years in the Netherlands served the Underground forces. Newly married, starting a family, and at the same time actively work to keep as many Jews out of the Nazi death camps as they could; even hiding a Canadian pilot for a short time. And, my mother with her electric kitchen stove (working since our power was kept on due to a nearby factory) during that final desperate “Hongerwinter” (Hunger Winter) was able to bake some stealthily gathered foodstuffs for us and neighbors. 

Add to this full-plate the organizing necessary for my Monday morning slog to Austin. That sounds negative, but it isn’t; I am really looking forward to the visit. Its important!

SCOTUS – The Supreme Court always appears to be somewhere hidden in a fog. Yet, the humanity of the members pushes to the forefront every so often. In those cases it’s usually a specific member with a particular personality, and with a humility and humanity specific to them. Over the last decade or two certain names stand out. I appreciated listening to Justice Antonin Scalia – he could explain rulings in a way that my weak brain could understand. On rulings where my belief system was most often at opposites of RBG (Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg) I had lots of appreciation. Her honesty of conviction and willingness to stay true to herself had me pay attention anytime she spoke.

With both of these legal mountains no longer with us, it’s the insightful quiet one, Justice Clarence Thomas that I see as being a national treasure.

Cerne Abbas Giant – in the hills near Dorset, England is carved and chalked an enormous outline of a naked man holding a club. No one knows the ‘why’ or ‘who’, but recently it’s agreed that the huge chalk figure was created in the Late Saxon period (650 and 1310 A.D.).

What it tells me is that those wily Late Saxon folk had more time on their hands than we ever realized. And that they had more fun than we ever imagined – think a conversation taking place at that time: “dad, this Sabbath afternoon may we please all go picnic in the hills and work on Cerne Abbas? Mom says she’ll toil on chalking his club.”

   

Climate – This whole Climate-control-to-prevent-change thing is a joke.

We almost worship the likes of a Greta Thunberg—18 years old, never finished high school and absolutely no training in climate science. Then guess what coverage is given to someone like a Dr. Judith Curry (age 63), PhD in Geophysical Science. Former tenured professor and chair of The School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology – that’s correct, zero, nada. It’s all for politics, control, money, equality and power. None of the real data supports any of these governmental and U.N. ’studies’.

CO2 is a minor unseen gas so valuable that without it the planet would die in short order. It has zero to do with Global Warming. The Sun is our major driver and its cycles determine much of what happening climate wise. As author Peter Clack (Australia) writes in Firestorm; “The tide is turning against the greatest hoax since the rise of the internet. CO2 is not toxic, and higher levels mean better richer environments, including agriculture. CO2 has never warmed the climate over the earth’s 4.5 billion years. Oceans, solar, life and geology do that.”

He further describes how all land life on earth exists on floating islands moving endlessly across our vast oceans. It’s the oceanic currents which are the barometers of climate.

Yet, the latest (this week) is a ruling by a Dutch Court ordering Royal Dutch Shell to deepen its carbon cuts by 45% by 2030.

Question, does this apply to China too?

Critical Race & Wokism – If you have children in school or if you have grand children in school then pass this clip on to your kids. It shows a parent, Asra Nomani, who has a son in Thomas Jefferson High School in Fairfax County, VA. Her quiet demeanor girds the power of her message of truth as she absolutely destroys the School Board. Then listen to the total disrespect displayed by Board members.

On display and what Asra highlights is what is going on all over the country, in public and private schools. This has been building for years and needs to change. A number of States have recently passed legislation to try and stem the trend. Here in my State a lawsuit is underway. Take heed, make note, and create change!

Fini –
• The Cicadas have arrived. Since their noise is loud and incessant it has quickly been relegated to mere ‘background’. However, now that it’s raining the noise has also nearly stopped. This makes it difficult to plod on as if it’s nothing. Every day I take our little leaf blower and empty the surrounding walkways –such fun.

• RIP Eric Carle, children’s books author and illustrator at age 91. I remember reading his The Very Hungry Caterpillar to a pair of delighted and rapt grand kids.

• People are asking what exactly is going on at the corner of Chaos & Mayhem. Other than an occasional vehicle with a 1500+-amp sound system ramped up with some ‘dulcet’ Rap tune (teaching me a whole new genre of language), all is quiet. Having said that, earlier this week coming back from my walk I came across this mess two blocks from our little hovel. The noise of the crash had Marcia run out when she heard the impact sitting in our sun-room.

Paul and I are sharing tricks and technique to get rid of Carpenter bees. I am opting for the axiom pushed by ‘Tim the Toolman’ Taylor using his Binford; “more power, more power” method.

• Just in! BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors, she of “I am Marxist trained” fame, just resigned from her BLM executive director position. I don’t suppose that her recent $3.2-million property buying spree (4 high-end homes as reported by the NY Post) had anything to do with her decision. Nah!

• Now that even our actors are learning Mandarin in order to grovel appropriately before their Chinese masters (actor John Cena on calling Taiwan a country is the latest). I love Taiwan’s view of the situation with this re-drawn regional map.

• We’re getting over the worst of the Wu-Flu. Canada is still in the thick of it with an array of severe restrictions. And yes, the border is still closed and hence, we’re not at camp (Northern Comfort). Part of the restrictive lifestyle is that opposing information on Covid is being censored. Are they aware that it’s NOT science if you’re not allowed to question?

• On one of my walks I spotted this vehicle. It would appear that is started life as a School Bus. Now in its devil-may-care teen years it appears to want to be a bit more rambunctious. I like it!

• After pouring a Java refill I’ll call the listed number to see what it takes to set up an appointment and then ask the; “why would I?” question. These are strange times indeed.

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, and head outdoors!

Dirk


Wrinkles in Time

05 22nd, 2021

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


Freedom

05 15th, 2021

Finally, the weather is popping and is doing so for days in a row. Even the little Mr. Coffee is happily ‘burping’ its morning song. It’ll be a good day.

Mid May and is glorious. Add to a walk later today and I will have seen 50-miles of our surrounding streets, sidewalks, and parks. Over the next couple of weeks both Derek in Austin and Marin here in town will graduate from High school. Another phase of their lives will be over and new adventures wait.

It’s everyman, buddy Earl Pitts, who has some insight into the importance of completing High school to the others who’ll be pushing on into the next grade:

Freedom – from the nonsense of forced mask wearing. Finally freedom! That is unless it’s fake science, power, control, or influence you’re after. Freedom
especially from the little blue and white toss-away, ill (or none) fitting masks I see strewn about everywhere. And I mean everywhere. So, hallelujah!

Hermann Goering during the Nuremberg trials (1945) answered the question asked of him; “How did you convince the German people to accept all this?” His reply:

”It was easy and has nothing to do with Nazism. The only thing a government needs to turn people into slaves is fear. If you can find something to scare them you can you can make them do anything you want.”

A Sports Week – So, last week I mentioned that I had signed up to Kayak nine miles on the Ohio River, between the outer beltway and downtown. This week I also signed up to do a 10K sponsored by our ice hockey team, the Cyclones. Normally it’s held in the dead of winter. This year it was advanced to August, not as the ‘Frozen 10K’, but as the ‘Unfrozen 10K’. It’s been a ‘special’ year don’t you know.

But that is not all. George and Sandy made plans to visit in September and high on the to-do list is to grab a ball game – we’ll be watching the Cincinnati Reds play Pittsburgh.

Then today, 4:00PM to be exact, our FCC soccer team will play their first home game in the brand new stadium. I’ve seen the outside and it’s spectacular. The downside is that they’ll open up under the old restrictive rules and cap attendance at 6,000 season ticket holders. After today’s game this will change and I should be able to take in a game before the summer is over. Have a look at what this new facility looks like. Located a stone’s throw from Findlay Market, Music Hall, and Samuel Adams brewery, it’s in the heart of things.

Critical Race Theory – CRT is alive and well as far as Ohio’s Board of Education is concerned. And beware, your school system, even private and religious schools, are not immune. In Ohio a lawsuit has been filed against the Board and several States have passed laws stopping this undercurrent of change. A creeping change in about everything that has made America work and work well.

How do you spot this intrusion? A teacher gets a Social Justice Degree. A Director of DEI is hired. A Teacher slowly moves into their own syllabus. Book selections morph to where only one worldview is presented (review the 1619 Project or review CRT mandated reading authors such as Ibram X. Kendi).

In schools and beginning in the work place where it’s often ‘woke’ versus ‘non-woke’; CRT is driving Cancel Culture. The loud voices talking Systemic Racism are really looking to cancel people who don’t agree or comply.

Watch for language since words do have meaning. Words such as; equity, culturally responsive curriculum, anti-racist, racial sensitivity, unconscious or implicit bias, cultural awareness, “Diversity, Inclusion, Equity, Justice”, white-privilege, whiteness, or white supremacy. This finds school documentation in Akron Ohio area containing lines such as this: “…and to promote policies and practices that support equity and inclusiveness in math.”

And it’s happening across the nation. Its picking up speed, its insidious and infiltrating even STEM areas (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) in almost every College and University. At Skidmore College in New York State, a professor was boycotted for merely attending a pro-police “Back the Blue” rally.

Wokeness finds Companies and governmental department having mandatory sessions for employees and contractors. Promoting this Cancel Culture ‘woke’ movement to the point where people are afraid to utter an alternative for worry about their future growth path and their very livelihood. At Boeing a top executive recently lost his job because of an article he wrote in 1987, opposing allowing women to serve as fighter pilots. It’s very real!

Marcia and I used the efforts promoted by the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. to live and to raise our kids. We avoided grouping in ‘silos’. What this CRT path does has us moving towards the abyss.

Mr. Bean actor Rowan Atkinson compared cancel culture to a “medieval mob looking for someone to burn.”

Fini –
• Thursday was “Happy 513-Day” in these parts. 513? Yup; (513) is our area code and it was May 13th. A bit of nonsense, but cute. Agree?

• 38 days ago Biden gave the Palestinians $235-million of your tax dollars. Almost a month to the day later and Hamas started firing rockets into Israel – well over a 1,000 rockets to date. A little over a year ago Trump oversaw Israel and 5 Arab nations sign the Abraham Accords opening trade and signaling peace. See a difference?

• Another casualty. Arthur Beale (The Mad Sailor shop) is closing; a fixture in London for 500 years it closed shop. Beale’s had survived the burning of London, bubonic plague, the Swine flu, the Nazi bombings of London, but could not survive the Wu-Flu (aka Covid-19) lockdowns.

• Talking news from England, it was this past week in 1796 that country doctor Edward Jenner gave the first ‘jab’ to combat smallpox. He administered a vaccine created from cowpox pus to a youngster in Gloucestershire.

• When ‘Equality’ reigns over ‘Equity’ great things can happen. Two-time Nobel Prize winner (Physics in 1903 and Chemistry in 1911) Marie Curie was the individual who established that the Atom was not a solid but consisted of sub particles. The photo shows her giving a lecture on radioactivity in 1925 to the French Academy of Medicine in Paris. She recommended Lead screens and ongoing screening tests for workers in labs dealing with radioactive materials.

Remember when a Special Counsel John Durham was appointed to ferret out the story of the FBI’s fraudulent Russia-collusion in May of 2019? Remember how a year in, Trump expressed frustration by the (lack of?) progress of Durham’s criminal investigation? So the question now mid-May two years in is; “where is Durham?”

• Art and Jolene spent a few days this week on Mackinac Island in Michigan. One of their stops was at the Chippewa Hotel and its Pink Pony Lounge. It just so happened that I worked as a bartender at that very lounge. That was the summer of 1967. I told him to order a drink and have them put it on my tab. So he sent me a photo of his drink tab; my, my, how times have changed.

The cool weather seems to have delayed the emerging Cicadas – stay tuned

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, be healthy and follow the science – the real science that keeps on searching! Freedom reigns!

Dirk


Happy Mother’s Day

05 8th, 2021

Even though it’s really a day early, but hey! With what the weather promises for tomorrow, here we’re pushing everything we can onto Saturday, including Mother’s Day – and anyone referring to it as “birthing parent’s day” will be tossed out on their ear. Follow a search of Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, (D-N.Y.), chair of the House Democratic Caucus, to see why he is so proud of all the nonsense language ‘trip-ups’ introduced by the 117th Congress – it’s a ‘mosaic’ baby.

Now some coffee!

Making it the best – this is another summer season with our cabin sitting empty, Marcia’s rhubarb and chives growing wild, boats ‘pining’ for water, and ‘Our Duck’ 2CV locked up in a dark storage bin. After a long winter something had to be done.

So, this week I signed up for Paddlefest 2021. What is this? As their opening web page states; “The Ohio River Paddlefest is recognized as the nation’s largest paddling celebration with 2,000 participants traveling 9 miles through downtown Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky in canoes, kayaks, and other human-powered craft.”

I signed up early so that I would be able to rent a kayak (the reason I’m renting you now know).

   

Then, this coming week I’ll sign up for the Cyclones (our minor league hockey team) 10K. I’ve participated in past years in their “Frozen 10K” held in February, which this year was cancelled due to the Wuhan-flu. This summer its being held as the, one time only, ‘Un-frozen’ 10K.

Okay, so it’ll bring a little excitement into my life. Can you blame me?

Two superb session – were held and I learned and enjoyed immensely this past week. One was our former city Mayor, Ken Blackwell; Senior Fellow for Human Rights and Constitutional Governance at the Family Research Council, Treasurer and Secretary of State for Ohio, Undersecretary at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Human Rights Commission.

He gave amazing insights into Election Integrity, the weaknesses witnessed during our 2020 elections, and the path forward with improvements. Hearing a front liner’s recounting of what actually transpired in Georgia, Pennsylvania and Michigan during the election period was something. Truly a mesmerizing session listening to all the details and changes made in the few weeks beginning with the lead up to the election itself.

He didn’t state that he felt that with last fall’s election that cheating had occurred, but definitely that security issues and abject problems were prevalent. Better oversight and tighter controls are necessary.

The second session was with a human dynamo; Vivek Ramaswamy. Ramaswamy founded multibillion-dollar enterprises, led a biotech company as CEO, he became a hedge fun partner in his 20’s, trained as a scientist at Harvard and a lawyer at Yale, and grew up the child of immigrants in the small town of Evendale, Ohio. I noted on his bio that this local star is “turning heads on Tucker Carlson’s show and on the Opinion pages of the Wall St. Journal”.

Now he’s just finished writing a new book under the title of ‘Woke Inc.’. The book starts as a critique of stakeholder capitalism and ends with an exploration of what it means to be an American in 2021. It’s powerful.

Yup, still learning – still enjoying the process.

Critical Race Theory – is another bugaboo racing throughout our nation. It negates what Martin Luther King Jr. emphasized. It negates what it was we as a family strove to pass on to our kids as we raised them in a multi-cultural environment and in a multi-cultural school system.

Britannica defines Critical Race Theory (CRT); “CRT holds that the law and legal institutions in the United States are inherently racist insofar as they function to create and maintain social, economic, and political inequalities between whites and nonwhites, especially African Americans.”

It began a couple of decades ago and is now a full-blown teaching entity in higher education and into the public and some private elementary and high schools, busily placing everyone into their separate silos sniping at those in another silo.

Several States such as Iowa, Tennessee, Florida, and Texas have already taken measures to put a halt on it. Here in Ohio a lawsuit against the State Board of Education on the issue has been filed.

Tuesday, I’ll be listening to an EmpowerU session on the issue here in our State; featuring parents and a member of our State Board of Education.

In the meantime, watch this short YouTube as a parent, Asra Nomani, addresses the Fairfax County, Virginia, Board of Education and drops some incredibly powerful ‘truth bombs’. Listen to the end of this short video and how the Board responds and the tone of voice used. These are elected people addressing “We the People”.

Fini –
• Nearby Xavier University held graduation ceremonies yesterday. Walking through adjoining neighborhoods where much of the housing is student rentals I took note that front lawn “Beer Pong” is alive and well. Also, the Craft Beer Tours are up and running

   

• With the new Administration in charge changes are to be expected, some subtle, some not. The one that stands out (among many) is that for the first time in my memory the permit for the “Rolling Thunder” motorcycle rally to honor the vets on Memorial Day has been denied.

• Marcia is normally pretty blasé regarding news events. She sat up though when ‘cigarettes’ and ‘menthol’ were mentioned at the same time. Is this the end?

• Tonight on Saturday Night Live the host is Elon Musk. The little fragile cast members won’t be forced to appear should they not want to appear on the same stage as Elon. A bit of a far cry from the SNL I remember.

• Las Sunday was Vili’s final soccer game of the season, and it was his best. He played with vigor, heart, and had his head in the game. They lost, he won; and the pizza afterward had the whole team smiling!

• These three-wheelers have become fairly popular in and about our area. Most are Polaris Slingshots. The real time to watch them blast through the corner of Chaos and Mayhem is at night though. That is when the ones decked out with blinking, flashing, and rotating LED colored lights are the real standouts.

• Last weekend Marcia and I made our way to Findlay Market. It had been way too long between the ‘Wuhan’ restrictions and the cold weather.

• Since earlier on I mentioned education in 2021, were you aware that John Quincy Adams, at age 14 spoke 5 languages (English, German, Dutch, French, and Latin), had command of European history, and was already serving the country as private secretary to the then U.S. ambassador in St. Petersburg.

• I just noted that our neighbor across the street had his work-truck sideswiped during the night. A bit ago, the Police were there taking a report. The Corner of Chaos and Mayhem never sleeps.

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, be healthy and follow the science – the real science that keeps on searching!

Dirk


Return of Normalcy

05 1st, 2021

A good Saturday to all. It’s still quiet (mostly) outside, yesterday’s winds have eased and the sun is supposed to ‘pop’ later. Here, we’re no longer talking how much we’re enjoying Gevalia Coffee – so I won’t belabor that. Let me just stop a moment to pour my first mug.

Normalcy – is quickly returning. Last evening we ate at our favorite ‘burger-special-of-the-day’ pub, Quatman’s Café, and the place was hopping. Patio nearly full as it was inside. I walked home from there and noticed similar scenes at other restaurants (judging by their parking lots).

Gotta mention; I had to have some Mock Turtle Soup as a starter – fabulous! Were you aware that the dish was served at President Lincoln’s first inauguration? It was, and in the day it was also on the menus of the Waldorf-Astoria, The Plaza, and the St. Regis.

Walking – especially in an urban setting offers a wide array of sights – constantly and ever changing. This week I took these pictures while walking. The car fire business had me pause and I was the one who ended up calling 911 – this after the people at the adjacent garage emptied 5 fire extinguishers without success. The bottom photo I took last evening while walking past Listermann Brewing; here a tour busload of craft beer aficionados had just unloaded. It’s further proof that we are returning to the good old days.

   

Only 110 years – ago last Thursday (April 28) but in 1910 it was the Frenchman, Louis Paulhan who won the 1910 London to Manchester air race. This was the first long-distance air race held in England (approximately 163 air miles).

This race was a mere 7-year after the Wright Brother’s flight at Kitty Hawk, NC.; a flight which lasted a mere 12-seconds. So, this air race was already an amazing accomplishment. Only two aircraft competed and Paulhan a Frenchman and the winner was presented a golden casket containing a check for the £10,000 prize (about $270,000 today). The photo shows the pilot Paulhan and his entourage.

It was the first night flight, navigated by lights turned on at railroad stations and bonfires along the way. Even with an overnight mid-way re-fuelling and an overnight rest stop it was a ‘Hollywood’ style racing adventure.

To put into perspective just how recent all this ‘hoopla’ was, someone mentioned in the comment section that; “some of these people later watched the moon landing on TV.”

This is a wonderful 5-min movie, stabilized and colorized, well worth watching.

There, that’s your history lesson/adventure for the day. You’re welcome.

Crotte de Chien – A few evenings ago, with much hoopla, we were presented a political speech containing a trainload of platitudes, oft-repeated sayings, and proposed offers of handouts too large to comprehend (of which the stated goals are fractionally of what was being peddled); and these well buried in lies touted as offering nirvana at the end of their rainbow. Trillions of dollars are being bantered about with less concern than I give to a $1.00 bill. “‘Crotte de Chien’ (dog poo)!” I say.

The very first error of the speech was Biden’s; “We the People is the Government.” This is where you, sir, are Dead Wrong! “We the People” are we; WE are the people who are in charge of the Government. That is what makes America. As Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) succinctly put it; “Our best future won’t come from Washington schemes or socialist dreams. It will come from you.”

The most direct answer I’ve heard to all the socialist proponents of the Green New Deal claptrap which is being screeched about by this Administration comes from the UKs Godfrey Bloom, MEP Ukip, at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, May 2011 – so it isn’t that our current class of pretenders hasn’t known about the ‘crotte de chien’ they are unleashing on us all: [it’s a 3-min video]

Fini –
• Yesterday was Marlene’s Birthday. The day before it was singer Willie Nelson’s 88th. Many more “Whiskey Rivers” to both.

• Jazz Day happened yesterday. With many places still not allowing venues to open it might be fun to tune in a Jazz session originating in your area as part of the celebration. My own hunt found that rather than a day, most are an all weekend affair. Enjoy!

• Last week I made reference to the Administration’s replacement of “Equity” versus our traditional search for “Equality” for all. I heard that some were not totally clear as to what is happening. Maybe this picture will explain better:

• It’s already been 10 years ago today that Osama bin Laden —founder of the Islamist organization al-Qaeda was killed in Pakistan.

• Biden’s Global Climate Change 2021 event seems to have pushed ‘wunderkind’ Greta Thunberg back a bit; the new powerhouse to address the 40 world-leaders was 19 year old Mexican Xiye Bastida. It’s her deep insights such as; “We live with the cycles of Earth, and for rain to not come when it’s rainy season?—?that’s crazy”; which can only mean that yes there are always Climate Changes, but each event must mean people are the cause. She now follows a long list of; “the World Will End” panic mongers.

• Meanwhile the corner of Chaos and Mayhem is active and well, no matter where or when we look.

• Now I best begin to focus on my afternoon Yoga session led by Kirstin via Zoom. She had a session yesterday with 35 participants so her sessions must be good. Interested? Let her know via Facebook or in the comment section at the bottom of these Ramblings and I’ll pass it along.

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, be healthy and follow the science – the real science that which keeps on exploring!

Dirk


The Science kick

04 24th, 2021

Good Saturday morning to all. Finally I spotted a viable sign that normalcy is coming back and no, it’s not the Robins – these have been around for weeks. No, for the first time in a year, I spotted the welcoming signage on a Bloodmobile, idling curbside and open for business.

I bet that you thought I’d bang you over the head with some insight on the Wu-Flu pandemonium. Noooo, I am not. Other than a bit of disgust that the Canada/US border remains closed; and it appears it’ll remain so for some time.

Well, actually it is gratifying to see people who believe in science and realize that Covid will easily spread through the iCloud. Hence we can see, as Professor Saad says to; “our Unifying Man of Science, thank you for promoting an ethos of science”, by wearing a mask on Zoom.

This week, after waking up with 2.7” of snow one morning, spring is really here (after we get through an all-day rain today).

   

Beer, oh foaming Beer – I have always known that with its German heritage our town is a beer town. What I didn’t know was to what extent. Cincinnati Magazine recently wrote: “According to the WPA Guide 1, a stretch of Vine Street measuring less than two miles, between McMillan Street and the Ohio River, boasted no fewer than 113 drinking places during the 1890s. In the block between 12th and 13th Streets alone, there were 23 saloons or beer gardens.”

“….anti-booze and temperance firebrand Carrie Nation during her 1901 visit to Cincinnati spoke to packed houses and toured the local dens of iniquity; she did not smash a single window nor shatter even one barroom mirror. Asked why, Nation allegedly replied, “I would have dropped from exhaustion before I had gone a block”.”

1. During the 1930s, in the United States, the Works Progress Administration (WPA) developed the Federal Writers’ Project [to produce a guide for each State]. This project was to support writers and artists while making a national effort to document the country’s shared history and culture.

A First Ever – This past week I made time to watch NASA’s Mars helicopter, Ingenuity, take it’s first flight. The very first time ever that a packaged aircraft was unloaded, made ready, and took flight with a subsequent perfect landing all on another planet millions of miles away. Even the fact that we were able to watch this whole event in real time was amazing.

As Vince and I would have said to each other while high-fiving; “this is Yuuuge!”

The Climate Hype continues – John Kerry is our Climate Tsar. Recently, representing us during Biden’s Global Climate Summit (4-22-’21), he expounded on the old bugaboo – CO2, stating; “we need to get Carbon Dioxide out of the atmosphere.”

What a clown; such nonsense! Such ignorance! Such drivel!

Photosynthesis; want us all to starve and die? Life on our planet as we know it would not exist were it not for a benign trace gas called CO2.

While we’re hard at work pledging ‘goals’ tied to crippling taxes and knee-cracking power reduction, our current administration is thrilled by China’s President Xi Jinping as he re-affirmed commitments to peak emissions before 2030 and go carbon neutral by 2060.

Remember, this is the same China that reneged on all promises with Hong Kong as it got screwed over by them! The same China, which through its ‘hand-maiden’ the World Health Organization’s complicity stuck us into the massive pandemic.

Boogie-Woogie – Having unleashed (rant?) a bit, I should remember that it’s springtime. It’s a time of renewal, warmth, brightness; its foot-stomping time. Who better to get that going than the pairing of Jools Holland and the late Dr. John as the “”Boogie Woogie Twins”; Fabulous!

Vaccines – Last evening the CDC, FDA ended the pause on use of Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine. Whew, now Marcia and I won’t be touted as the neighborhood ‘whack-jobs’. Yup, we are part of the “one shot and you’re done” group. Once again, we’re ‘legit’.

Fini –
• On Thursday’s exercise walk cutting through the Xavier campus I spotted this animal. For some unknown reason I found myself humming the song; “Waltzing Matilda” all the way home.

• This past week via Zoom was the 15th workout session with my brothers. Totally enjoyable and I am noticing subtle changes. One of those changes in my effort doing the Plank – and then holding it for a period. I thought I was doing pretty well and the Kirstin sent me this photo. I now have a new goal.

• Subterfuge has been around forever (almost). Today in 1184 BC (traditional date) the Greeks enter Troy using the Trojan Horse

• On the sad news side is the Virginia Department of Education. They are eliminating all Accelerated Math Courses as part of their Equity Plan; this year American greatness has to be coupled to ‘equity’ according to the ‘new-think’. We must pay attention to equity across the board. Under representation (due to lack of ‘equity’) is rampant across our society; too few Dutch immigrants on Death Row, too few hearing impaired airline pilots, too few Tibetan members on our city council, no accommodation for city dwellers who require access to traditional Yurts for their housing, should I go on?

• How quickly things change. Today in 1962 the Massachusetts Institute of Technology sent a TV signal by satellite for 1st time: California to Massachusetts. And in 2018 streaming music services overtake worldwide sales of CDs and vinyl for the first time according to IFPI

• Every so often I’d catch sight of a striking Red Jeep flying by; the Kentucky Rebel Wranglers “Firecracker”.” On a walk this week I happened on it and even up close it’s striking.

• And yes, the corner of ‘Chaos and Mayhem‘ is active and well.

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

Dirk


A Perfect Week

04 17th, 2021

Still a bit of morning chill these Saturday mornings – then it’s the continuation of a stunning springtime. My coffee, made from a new batch of Gevalia Kaffe, is just adding to it.

Dinner Out – Last Tuesday dinner-out was one of the better evening’s out we’d had in many a day; Sorrento’s Italian Joint. Great food, wonderful service, and for desert a strong coffee with a Cannoli!

I met Marcia there after walking to the place and then afterwards, while she drove home, I walked back. There, those six miles total took care of the Cannoli.

Entering Sorrento’s Italian Joint is parked a small car. That’s an early 1950s Fiat 500 Topolino (“little Mouse” in Italian) I thought to myself. However, something didn’t fit. I put it to members of my Deux Chevaux on-line club and it didn’t take long before I had the answer. What is parked there is a rusty (floorlesss)  equivalent to the Topolino; a French built Simca 6; same as the Fiat Topolino except for the fact that these had an overhead cam. Accuracy is important!

I was hoping for a rousing after-dinner game of Bocce Ball; we skipped that.

My Historical Hero – has been Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill. And, this was not in the least due to the fact that my high school was named; Winston Churchill Collegiate Institute. It’s as a result of a series of factors. He had many setbacks, many flaws, and much greatness; all capsulated in this quote:

“Only Churchill carries that absolutely required criterion: indispensability, without Churchill the world today would be unrecognizable ~ Dr. Charles Krauthammer

Krauthamer declared Churchill the most influential person of the 20th Century.

Thursday evening was captivating as I Zoomed a seminar, as part a one and a half hour exploration of this complex man. Here are some of insights gleaned:

Humor of Churchill” He told a manufacturer; “I want you to make every condom 10½ inches long. I want every box, every carton, and every packet saying; “British, Size: Medium”. That will show the Nazis who is the master race.
He disliked Lord Halifax who wanted to negotiate with Hitler. One time when Halifax came to see him, Churchill told an aide, “Tell Lord Halifax that I am sealed in the privy (toilet), and can only deal with one shit at a time”
Churchill was not vindictive: ”I will not be party to any butcher in cold blood. What happens in hot blood is another matter.” “A nation should show in war, resolution, in defeat defiance, in victory magnanimity, in Peace goodwill.
Churchill’s Health Cures: June 5, 1953 He’d suffered a stroke which left his left side paralyzed. To recover he was up at 7:30, a farmer’s breakfast of eggs, bacon, sausages, and coffee followed; then a large whiskey and soda and a Cigar.
Churchill’s Love of Hats: He just didn’t collect them, he wore them; Fedoras, helmets, top hats, yachting caps, fireman’s hats, hard hats, sombreros, and bowlers.
Churchill and ‘branding’: he always left about 1/3 of his 8 to 10 cigars per day in his ashtray, saying, “never forget your Trademark

One Historian noted:
The difference between Hitler and Churchill – Hitler made you think he could do anything. Churchill made you think YOU could do anything.

Churchill himself said:
Be Conservative in Principle and Liberal in Sympathy

Man oh man, what a wonderful Thursday evening.(Photo partially colorized [a work in process] by Marina Amaral shows Sir Winston Churchill in his Knight of the Garter robes, his son Randolph, and grandson Winston and was taken on Queen Elizabeth II’s Coronation Day in 1953.)

The Climate Hype continues – I remember the cover of Time Magazine’sBe Worried. Be Very Worried” article of doom (April 3, 2006); dealing with how Climate Change was quickly causing the Polar Bear population to vanish. Here is the real story behind that hype. Dr. Douglas G. Frank runs numbers, runs data, and is local here and has done research for decades (I’ve heard him several times and he’s good).

Walmart over the top – My health insurer, Anthem Blue Cross coupled with Walmart by setting up an Over-the-Counter (OTC) benefit pool. Using funds from that pool allows me to ‘buy’ a wide array of health related items at zero cost to me. My pool of Dutch blood started flowing at that news.

Last weekend I read the sent material a little closer. And, since I needed some vitamins, set up an on-line account and placed an order; that was last Sunday. Within minutes I received a mail stating my order of two bottles of pills would be delivered on Tuesday. Most excellent news.

Twenty minutes later and a second Walmart mail; one of the (little) bottles was available at our nearby Walmart location and hence, would be delivered yet that day– remember, this is Sunday! Now also realize that this was for a bottle of vitamin pills that retails for under $7.00.

While I was out for some exercise Marcia heard a rustling by the front door and found a Walmart bag with the vitamins. Returning home, I spotted another mail stating that the delivery had been made and an enclosed photo as proof.

I loved their efficiency and diligence. But, the question is; how can they stay in business with this level of service on a $7.00 item?

Fini –
• Sunday will be Vili’s tenth birthday. With Wu-Flu still on people’s minds, it’s hit movie theaters hard. As an answer these places have gotten creative. So, on Sunday afternoon Adrianne and Tevita rented one of the theater rooms for a private showing of a movie picked from a list. Should be fun, invited guests only!

• Spotted this on one of my exercise walks this week. It’s got to be some sort of code. Can any of my readers decipher?

• A (very) bad photo, but on my traipsing along the Wasson Way Walkway this woman blew by me on her Cyclete — works like an ‘Elliptical’ exercise machine and has no saddle (stand-up only). It actually looked like a fun time and a serious workout simultaneously.

• Dinah is thrilled. First she got accepted as an apprentice (paid at that) with Cincinnati’s Artworks. She’s currently working weekends on a mural for a restaurant. Her team consists of two 14-year olds, two 18-year olds, and one professional. They have already placed a primer coat and have started putting the ‘grid’ on the wall.

• (not my original thought) But, it appears that MLB was correct in pointing out the blatant racism in the State of Georgia. Last weekend at The Masters the golfing community was at its worst. For two days this troop of white men, weaponized with metal clubs, chased after some poor Asian fellow. I later discovered that he’d taken the first flight out after successfully out-running the pack.

• And, I can’t end the Rambling without pointing out these words from John W. Whitehead & Nisha Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute; “We’ve been sold a bill of goods by politicians promising to pay down the national debt, jumpstart the economy, rebuild our infrastructure, secure our borders, ensure our security, and make us all healthy, wealthy and happy.” ….. None of that has come to pass, and yet we’ve still been loaded down with debt not of our own making.” And this same horror has been around for a number of decades and is accelerating under the current administration. make yourself heard!

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

Dirk