Archive for June, 2022

Memories; Old & New
06 25th, 2022

As my little side-banner states, “Happy Saturday”, and it’s already off to a good start. I just started Mr. Coffee with the first pot of Tim Hortons coffee from my new purchase. We were just about out of coffee and I happened to be at Costco. Lo and behold, a whole space dedicated to Tim Hortons, 3-lb tins of medium roast.

Then the phone rang and it was Paul. I had been thinking it was about time for me to give him a call – then he beat me to it. At one point he could hear some loud car barreling away from the Stop sign outside and wondered what he had heard. That talk turned to occasionally (about once a year) seeing a huge cadre of motorbikes blast by; but none so far. It wasn’t but an hour later Marcia and I were regaled by probably about 70 bikes of all sizes and shapes racing on by at speed – none even slowed one iota careening through the corner Stop sign. The ‘corner of Chaos and Mayhem‘ had come alive. The level of self-entitlement some people display is astounding.

A while later it was Marcia who heard on the Police scanner me that our Futball ‘soccer’ Club was playing Orlando and there was extra activity by the stadium. I knew about the game but had forgotten (not an age thing), so on went the TV and I ended up seeing a great defensive game. Our boys won 1 – 0.

As I said, the weekend is off to a great start.

Coffee Trivia –:
Now that age is creeping up on me, it’s the Japanese who believe that bathing in coffee grounds fermented with pineapple pulp will reduce wrinkles and beautify the skin. Should I try it?

It’s become so that hardly anyone actually sends a letter via a postal service, but let me share this bit from Brazil. At one time Brazil created a stamp that smelled like coffee. This stamp was designed to promote Brazilian coffee; allegedly the smell would stay for almost five years.

One of the most pathetic—and dangerous—signs of our times is the growing number of individuals and groups who believe that no one can possibly disagree with them for any honest reason ~ Thomas Sowell, Professor and Philosopher

For the children? – Full blown is the push to vaccinate our youngest children, down to the toddlers, against Covid; they are the very least and most minimally affected. There have been virtually no (as in zero) proper studies for efficacy and long term effects. Nevertheless, parents are told it’s “the science”. Those of us who label this as ‘child abuse’ (and there are many) are pushed aside. Are parents being urged to jab only by ‘conjecture’?

I just want everyone to dig into their memory banks, on the tragedy, then also in the name of “the science”, which we hoisted on our most vulnerable; the elderly. When seniors living in institutional facilities were locked up and inaccessible; where thousands died in bitter isolation. It was ‘the science’ you know.

History will not speak kindly of this.

Willie Nelson update – and the concert we’re heading to is only about a month out. Just about every week I pass on to Marcia something Willie related to build anticipation. This was this week’s offering – definitely worth a listen – especially if you like this piece by Charles Aznavour:

A ‘goon’ squad? – Is it just me, or has the FBI turned into a partisan goon squad? Available on beck and call; operating during the dark of night with CNN standing by, cameras rolling. Performing more than questionable legal activities, all at the behest of the current administration. Struggling with this?

There is a lot which the FBI won’t touch. How about beginning with Hunter Biden, his breaking of gun laws and his influence-peddling schemes; where they claim they can’t even find the guy’s laptop though signed over to them two years ago. Then, how about Epstein’s ‘fixer’, Ghislaine Maxwell – how many names in her little Black book are being questioned? Answer, none.

But, here’s what they can (and are) doing to name just a couple;

• Paul Manafort pulled out of bed in his pajamas by a ‘swat’ team (with CNN cameras across the street) and hauled in when he had informed that his attorney was willing to meet and discuss.
• Sweeping the offices of Project Veritas and treating James O’Keefe like a criminal after they had legally purchased Ashley Biden’s diary, which includes an allegation of possible misconduct by the current president.
• The latest is a raid on Michael McDonald, the Republican chairman in Nevada, and the seizure of his phone. Crime? A “fake electors” scheme where some Republican electors pledging to vote for Donald Trump. As the report notes, that move was purely ceremonial and held no legal weight.

Aside of political shenanigans at the start of the mid-term elections (impeccable timing people), what we’re seeing is a two-tiered justice system. The damage to the reputation of the FBI is palpable. I just thought you’d want to know – unless you do want to see our nation turn into the likes of a ‘Banana’ Republic, then never mind.

Meanwhile we’re watching our leadership march on. By the way, the magic word of the day is “Asufutimael’haehfutbw”:

Bluenose – This month- 6-years ago – Marcia and I spent time in the Canadian maritime provinces. A highlight of that trip (there were many) was a close-up look at the upkeep effort taking place on the schooner, the Bluenose in Halifax harbor. What’s the significance of this ship? Oh, not too much, it’s just the etched picture on every Canadian dime. Thought I’d make note of this great memory.


Fini –
• Here in the ‘hood there is a whole new way for ensuring your car is properly locked.

• without specificitySCOTUS isn’t illegitimate, they are the final word, and they didn’t strike down any law yesterday.” Found on the web.

• With the current cost of gasoline (something we made note of on our 1,000 mile trip a week or so ago); “Vladimir Putin did NOT cancel the Keystone Pipeline”!

• This week I discovered that the Quaker sect is only about 350,000 workd wide. In the USA there are approximately 87,000 Quakers out of the 350,000. Therefore, with so few in number, I thought it interesting that a mere few blocks from our home and in our neighborhood, is a Community of Friends – Quaker house of worship.

• Unthinking heroism: Anita Alvarez lost consciousness in the pool during world water championships in Budapest. Spaniard Fuentes, past Olympic Gold Medalist, jumped into the pool and brought Alvarez back to the surface and aid (apparently she is OK).

• Remember the 500-million per day plastic straws in the ocean hysteria? It seems that stat was an invention by a nine year old for a school project. I suspect the kid got an A+.

• Yesterday morning there were 5 planets of our solar system perfectly aligned, something not to occur again until the year 2040. Somehow, wanting to see this, I thought it was to be Friday evening. Whoops, me bad!

• Four days ago it was the summer Solstice. In Wollongong, NSW, Australia an artist built this very special bench. Cutting slices into the seat at an angle of 34°. This is perfect for the winter solstice in that region to create a striped shadow. For their summer solstice cutting holes at a 74° degree angle changes the shadow to a polka dot pattern of shadows.


• Brother Art has an amazing Lemon tree. Last Christmas he made us all bottles of Lemoncello. This is what I spotted at Aldi’s this week. It’s a whole new opportunity!

• Love Tesla? This past week their model Y & model 3 were named the “most American-made vehicles in the USA” by BTW, the largest car company in the US, GM, was not listed in the top 10.

• People love colors; they contain all sorts of meaning. Historically we still refer to the era of ‘yellow’ journalism. How many years before kids will refer to something called ‘blue’ journalism?

• Our Ikea kitchen faucet broke. It had a 10-year warranty. Bought in 2014 it took a few minutes of paperwork and a runner to grab a replacement. Back home, in less than an hour it was a ‘voila’ moment. Nice Customer Service Ikea.

• Maybe I should repeat until this is over so here it is again; “I know that with all that’s happening it’s easy to forget that we are still holding January 6 ‘political’ prisoners in prison in DC. They have not been formally charged and by not having a ‘speedy’ trial are being denied their basic human rights.”

Ciao, and be well till next weekend. Wish a fruitful and wonderfully meaningful life to all the newborns that now have a chance to achieve it. Keep on storming the castle. Pray for Peace.


Happy Father’s day?
06 18th, 2022

After a week’s hiatus, I’m Baaaack! Our trip to Sarasota could not have been better. The US Junior National Rowing competition was something to behold. The Nathan Benderson Park venue (touted best rowing facility in the nation) was stunning. And what Dinah’s US Junior Girls Rowing Team was able to accomplish was amazing – coming in for Silver beating the third place team by just one tenth of a second. It was a nail biter.

Weather wise, the most that Florida could’ve thrown at me (but never did), was brought north. This past week we had ridiculously high humidity, ‘real-feel’ temperatures constantly sitting at 105, and a rain and lightning storm with winds in excess of 80mph. Our energy company was trying to re-establish power to just over 200,000 customers. Marcia and I wondered if the last one to get their power on would get a prize (sort of a reverse lottery).

Coffee Trivia –
Due to my Dutch heritage I’ve got to point out that The Dutch East India Company; was the first to import coffee on a large scale. That company helped institute banking as a lending entity which the Brits began to study. It also assisted bringing about Holland’s ‘Golden Age’, As during that time The Dutch East India Company ushered in the Netherlands as the world’s naval powerhouse to primarily to protect their fleets [read the history of Michiel Adriaenszoon de Ruyter born March 24, 1607].

However, to be a bit more clinical, Coffee contains important nutrients we all need. One cup of coffee contains; “11% of the daily recommended amount of Riboflavin (vitamin B2), 6% of Pantothenic Acid (vitamin B5), 3% of Manganese and Potassium, and 2% of Niacin and Magnesium. And. the buzz some feel after drinking coffee comes from ingesting tiny 0.0016-inch crystals of caffeine.”

Chaos & Mayhem – And this was only a street away from our actual C&M Corner (less when cutting through someone’s yard). We were only home a couple of days when I smelled smoke and saw it fill our street. Marcia quickly picked up the details on her scanner. It was a two alarm and brought under control very quickly. The news claims it was $400,000 damage.

Father’s Day? – One item I should get out of my system. As a society we’ve gone absolutely ‘nutso’ by allocating a single day each year to celebrate Mothers and then Fathers; to now proceed allocating a full month to a small verge group loosely housing themselves under the acronym LGBTQIA+ (an acronym umbrella which rolls off one’s tongue doesn’t it?)

For a species which depends on natural selection, humans require a mechanism which our species depends on, sexual reproduction – this requires male and female traits.

Why not celebrate family, mother, father, and the power of starting new life on a strong path into the future – and celebrate that for a month?

I have little to no problem accepting that people have behaviors along a spectrum and wish everyone a long and fulfilling life, but a month-long celebration for LGBTQIA+? Give me a break.

Planning for the coming recession? – The idiocy of shutting down a whole economy, printing out millions of blank checks to everyone here and there, telling a nation to stay home from work, breaking up the supply chain, and then while at it spend trillions of dollars on pet causes; is it anything but a cause for disaster?

Now the spike in inflation (officially May 8.6% – most likely higher) is the highest in 40 years, and the 13th straight month with rise over 5%.

It’s actually funny to watch Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre wiggle around trying to unpack the blame for the downward spiral away from her boss and his inflationary policies.

USRowing Youth National Championships, Sarasota, FL – I’ve gone on and on about to the point of driving the family bonkers – hence, it’s enough. Now just some photos for those who hadn’t seen anything about the event. But winning a silver second place by one tenth of a second fighting off 18 nationally represented teams is quite special.


Fini –
• An exclamation point to the whole weekend

• Flying soon? Let me know whether or not you experienced the newest ‘double-decker’ seating arrangement.

• Good times with George and Sandy who made the jaunt north from Naples. Thanks guys!


• Sarasota: After dinner – by the beach – it was drumming into the night

• Boating. Only in America

• Waiting for sunset at Nokomis Beach, FL

• Pop’s Pub in Nokomis, FL. With Jason, Cathy, Marcia, and me. A super fun evening, great food and drinks. And special thanks to the two guys who kept supplying the ladies with shots.


• When a downpour happens during a rowing race, the racing never stops. The beach did clear of people, but the cheers and ringing cowbells stayed active.


• With the seeming food shortages and looking ahead. Should I begin stocking up on ‘Fromm’ or do you think ‘Taste of the Wild’ better? Asking for a friend.

• Even during races the training and warming up continued

• This week it was announced that Dr. Fauci tested positive for Covid. Remember when this same Doctor was quoted as saying; “when people are vaccinated, they can feel safe that they are not going to get infected.” I will let both Sandy and George know, as just this week they are getting over a bout of Covid – btw; they’ve both been jabbed and boosted.

• I know that with all that’s happening it’s easy to forget that we are still holding January 6 ‘political’ prisoners in prison in DC. They have not been formally charged and by not having a ‘speedy’ trial are being denied their basic human rights.

Dr. Simone Gold, JD, MD, founder of America’s Frontline Doctors and conservative voice on the handling of the Covid epidemic was sentenced to 60-days in jail for entering the Capitol Building (the peoples house) without an invitation January 6. Does the photo taken during the January 6 occurrence depict an out-of-control rioter?

• Seeing this side of Florida is not very common. Cathy, Jason, Marcia and I took some time to explore and were glad we did.

Ciao, and be well till next weekend. Wish all happiness and to all the Dads recognition for their role in all of our lives. Keep on storming the castle. Pray for Peace.


Pardon the Mess
06 11th, 2022


Forgot to mention last week. Traveling. So NO Ramblings this week.



06 4th, 2022

Saturday morning. Here in the ‘Nati it’s perfect; sunny at low eighties. Then, for our run to Florida early in the week, the low-level hurricane blowing through will have passed on by. So, yes, it’s set for one excellent week.

Coffee Trivia:
Kona is a coffee grown in Hawaii. The only other place in the USA where coffee is grown is Puerto Rico, and some in California. Having said that, were you aware that we have had a Kona coffee plant growing in Ohio for 20 years?

I finally saw the price of a Swiss made Jura E-6 (the mainstay coffee machine in aircraft). The in-home use version of the machine costs more than I paid for my first new car – a NSU Prinz.

The Championships – are here. Tuesday we leave for the 2022 Youth National Championships – USRowing in Sarasota, Florida. 
We managed to ‘snag’ our visitor’s passes (last year these sold out very quickly). These went on sale last Wednesday at noon exactly. Marcia and I both had our computers open (hers as backup), and at 11:59:55 my index finger hit the ‘enter’ key. Even so, I was placed in a (short) wait cue. Whew!
Booked a hotel (not easy).
Rented a car (easy using Costco).
And now the biggest debate of all – what all and how to pack for the adventure.

Once again, it’s Earl Pitts and his common sense insights, which has made the whole packing process much more manageable.

The pictures below are of the venue: Nathan Benderson Park, a $40-million facility:

The Last Takajo – I thought I’d present you with a short (around 7 minutes) read about a 71-year old man, Hidetoshi Matsubara.[<– CLICK name to open the story]

It’s a story first written for Patagonia Japan and only recently translated to English for Patagonia – North America. It takes place in Japan’s T?hoku (snowy) region. Matsubura is one of the last remaining individuals who practices falconry.

Most hunting throughout the world uses traps, guns, and some hand managed equipment, i.e. knife or bows, etc. As a falconer Matsubara uses animals to hunt animals.

A falconer he’s trained and hunted with the birds for 50 years. He lives in a small hut at the foot of a mountain in northern Yamagata Prefecture to a solitary life with his hawks. The hut did not have gas, electricity or water, and only lamps and candles provided light, with the nearest home a two-and-a-half-hour walk away.

A quick read, sprinkled with some stunning photographs, I thought it worthwhile to share and hope it delights you as much as it did me. Enjoy!


”This country has a mental health problem disguised as a gun problem.” ~ Joe Rogan, host of The Joe Rogan Experience

It truly is obscene – horrific, and disgusting what we witnessed this past week with the killing of so many. What is also nauseating is what we’re being ‘spoon’ fed. There was another mass shooting on June 1st; it was barely reported on and then, nothing. Why?

Prior to the 1980s we never had unprovoked mass killings. Prior to that time kids all had play guns, access to real guns, and at a young age had BB guns – what has changed since then? It’s a question that is not asked but needs to be.

Was this change a result of LBJ’s introduction of the “Great Society” and his “War on Poverty”? Programs which, especially with minority groups, pushed men out of the father role and inserted government into the void? Could it be the assault on the nuclear family? Could it be the overarching role of Social Media? Could it be the total disregard of advancing mental health programs?

We best start paying attention to all of this and have serious and on-going discussions rather than constant ‘knee-jerk’ reactive responses.

”During my twelve-and-a-half years as a member of this body, I have never believed that additional gun control or federal registration of guns would reduce crime.”
“I am convinced that a criminal who wants a firearm can get one through illegal, untraceable, unregistered sources, with or without gun control.”
~ Senator Joe Biden, 1985

For those who thought our founding fathers wrong by introducing the 2nd Amendment and that “arming the body of people against would-be tyrants” totally unnecessary. Please note that just this last century tyrannical governments (whose first act was always gun removal) slaughtered 200-million innocent people. Even this past year, see how easy it was for a Canadian PM to erase his people’s Charter Rights and run ram shot over truckers protesting for Freedom as was legally guaranteed using heavily armed ‘police’.

Why are Uzi’s common on the streets of Israel without problem. Why are we discussing gun restrictions while simultaneously arming just about every Ukrainian.

It’s all political and all a power grab. It’s a loss of your Freedom!

Fini –
• Big mistake! Selling our 1971 VW van a few decades ago. Arrrgh!


• Reflecting on cars. Back in the sixties did any of you take a nap in one of these “Lull-A-Baby” wonders?

• Then shock of shocks, this sent to me by an aquintance in France. I think it’s still salvageable. If you don’t recognize, it’s a red Citroën Deux Chevaux (2CV).

• Last week I did mention activity on the corner of Chaos & Mayhem”. Please note that the activity never stops:

• Mentioning Canadian PM Trudeau, here were his words this week; “There’s no reason anyone in Canada should need guns in their everyday life”. Please take a look just how he himself moves around;

• Happy Birthday (92nd) to one of my favorite actors – Clint Eastwood

• Remember what happened in Wuhan, China? This past week China was elected to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) executive Board. Reflect on that for more than a moment!

• On my walk I passed this food truck. Made me wonder if this truck specialized parking adjacent to Senior Citizen places, ie. Nursing and retirement facilities?

• Memorial Day weekend had me walk the four miles to Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum to stop by my parent’s grave site for some reflection. Glad I went or I would have missed all of these sights and happenings:

• Elon Musk said it well; “tomorrow will be the first sunrise of the rest of your life – make it what you want.”

Best till next weekend, keep smiling; and keep on storming the castle. Pray for Peace.