Archive for March, 2023

With a ‘dollop’
03 25th, 2023

Sleeping with rain hitting the windows isn’t all bad; in fact it’s pretty good. Outside at the corner of Chaos & Mayhem it’s about as quiet as I’ve ever seen. That too is good; although a bit forbidding too.

So let’s get going and change our focus.

Phrase of the week:People, what the f**k happened?” – frank-talking, half-Irish leader of the Dutch FarmerCitizenMovement (BBB) party , Caroline van der Plas, at her victory speech last Wednesday. The BBB was formed just three years ago and had jumped to first place in the Dutch Provincial elections. The European Union and their extremist edicts should be concerned.

Wednesday saw me wandering the neighborhood in shorts. Yesterday, actually starting Thursday, the hoodie was back on and the umbrella raised. Now the weather ‘gurus’ predict that later today when the numbers are released our big Muddy’, the Ohio River, will have risen 14’ and the three local feeder rivers 20’. This includes the Licking River where Dinah practices her rowing almost daily. Let the flooding begin.

Then later this morning wind gusts hitting 55mph will roar through. It’ll be a fun weekend, maybe even exciting.

Anyway, of greater import, it was just announced that soon Christian Moerlein beer will be back in the stores; that’s very good! Christian Moerlein beer has been around for over 150 years using centuries old German recipes and methods.

But, in the meantime I’ll slurp my hot morning coffee loaded with a dollop of Irish Cream. Life is good.

CCJO meets Gospel – was the concert I wrote about earlier. Last Sunday we experienced everything we had hoped for; great music, wonderful song, and a powerful presentation. It truly was a stunning afternoon. I know that some of you have seen a bit of video I captured. In case you haven’t seen, enjoy the Jazz orchestra and choir’s version of Aretha Franklin’s Amazing Grace.

Bailout? – As I’ve read; “if it looks like a Bailout, if it walks like a Bailout, it probably is a Bailout.”

When Fed Chair Yellen says that; “Uninsured investors will be made whole in that Silicon Valley Bank (SVG)” That means many small banks will end up paying and guess who those extra fees get passed on to? Could it possibly be you and me? Sure sounds like a ‘bailout’.

Have we ever been lied to? Nah, when have we ever been lied to? Surely not in regards to border security, not when giving word that not a single person wanting out would be left behind in Afghanistan, not in a single ‘one-for-all justice system’. I even trusted the sincerity of the “three weeks to flatten the curve.” Wanna talk energy security? Nah, all is fine, all is good!

And so it goes. The latest being ‘no bailout’ Janet Yellen Dropping a bombshell on the Silicon Valley Bank Bailout Scandal with her: “the Fed Can’t ‘Discriminate’ Against Chinese Investors.”

Word of the day: schtum as in ”Dinner conversation between the Trudeaus and the Biden’s was a classic schtum, leaving the other collected guests in utter confusion”; i.e. to not say something about something.

Bless the Mothers – We’re really in a ‘betwixt & between’ period – in more ways than one. In the UK they held Mother’s Day a week or so ago (March 19). Our US Mother’s Day won’t be till May 14th. However, counting the barrage of jewelry ads, primarily for diamonds, used Rolex watches, and fancy colognes, it’s got to be a massive event.

Growing up I remember little about the diamonds and Rolex stuff, just some warm and fuzzy ‘Mother’s’ songs on the radio. In case you’ve forgotten, especially the period from WWII through the 1950s, think of names like; Eddy Arnold, Allan Sherman, Don McLean, the Carter Family, or even Abba.

However, we now live in ‘fluid’ times and the whole concept of a Mother’s Day is under scrutiny. Interesting names such as “gestational parent” and “chestfeeding” are making an exciting entrance into the vocabulary.

Hence I am bridging the gap with a piece from the 1970-80s. Enjoy Pink Floyd doing Mother from their album The Wall:

Cincinnati Food Groups —
I know, I know, there is a large world of ‘Tofu and salad’ lovers out there. At times I too enjoy Tofu. Nevertheless, here in the ‘Nati we have our own list of ‘Faves’ and ‘tofu’ is not on the list. I thought I’d share:

1. Montgomery Ribs ~ the Ted Gregory family
2. Ruby’s Steak Houses/Precinct ~ Jeff Ruby
3. LaRosa’s Pizza ~ Buddy LaRosa
4. Skyline Chili ~ Nicholas Lambrinides and family
5. Jean-Robert de Cavel [RIP Dec. 2022]~ set up his own group of French restaurants (was ‘chef de cuisine’ at The Maisonette – Mobil 5 star rating). I also have to point out that Jean-Robert was the proud owner/driver of a Deux Chevaux.
6. Then for dessert what about: Graeters Ice Cream ~ Louis Charles Graeter


STEM – Had our Vili involved. He and a few other students from his school, since the New Year, were invited to spend one afternoon a week  learning about 3d printing, and modeling design software.

They had to think of a project, plan it, design it, and then print it. Yesterday morning, on the University of Cincinnati campus a couple of hundred student – of all grades, plus a few hard core users such as people from UC Children’s Hospital, got together to demonstrate their work. Surely such a great opportunity was one I wasn’t going to miss.

Vili’s piece was a bookmarker. Not just any bookmark, but one which pointed to the last page and the  last sentence read. How cool is that!


Nature at work – Just so that you don’t ‘hang your hat’ on that tired bit of ‘man made climate change’ gobbly-goog department; remember that the climate has been changing naturally each and every day since eternity. In light of that, here are the two events for this week (quoting Business Insider), please make note:

1. “The sun is getting more active than it has for a decade. Reaching it’s Maximus — and it could lead to power outages, grounded flights, and stunning auroras.”

2. “An asteroid nearly the size of a skyscraper will whiz between the Earth and the moon sometime later today in a once-in-a-decade event. The newly discovered space rock, named 2023 DZ2 could look like a “slow-moving star.””

Fin –

Liberal Democrat, attorney/professor Alan Dershowitz eviscerated NY DA Bragg’s potential Trump indictment as a “Mickey Mouse event”.

A head of cabbage, slivered carrots, some ginger, and a sprinkling of fennel equals? Answer; the 2nd batch of my homemade sauerkraut. Batch No. 1 flew out of the frig.

Last weekend Marcia looked over her shoulder, there, about 8 feet from the window was a group of 5 deer. Leisurly as you please they slowly walked by. Then, looking both ways, crossed the street and disappeared between the houses. We live in the core of a decent sized city and see more deer here as we do in the North Woods in Canada.

In case you want to know, with Dr. approval I have re-joined my twice weekly Zoom exercise group with my brothers and family (no overhead stuff especially with weights). Also, back to daily walking – easy pace 3 to 5 miles. And, I have signed up for a 5k in mid-April; Matt’s 5k Pursuit.

Ciao. Stay strong, never stop learning, never stop moving. Be safe and be healthy.

Keep on storming the castle. Pray for Peace.


Finally: Spring ~ Sprung
03 18th, 2023

The first mug of Dunkin’ coffee, with that a very happy Saturday morning to everyone. We ran out of Tim Hortons and so did Costco – not a bad changeover at all.

Although, at this end, we’re all still smarting from last weekend’s time shift – when will that nonsense end?

Now that Spring is here the 1st ¼ of the year passed successfully, even after my eye blowout and surgery. I’m almost back to normal and started the Zoom exercise program with my brothers and Jolene – just no overhead stuff with weights. That and back to walking, It all feels right!

With Spring now here we’ve begun the planning process for the opening of Northern Comfort at the lake. Like everything else, its one step at a time and each step has to be decided on, practiced, and perfected. First on the list is the proper way to exit the ‘Nati.

Phrase of the week; “on the lam”. This because it seems that in our area not a day went by where we weren’t apprised of the fact that one ‘perp’ after another was “on the lam”.

2CV – with the change of seasons, its time to break out “the Duck”, our little Deux Chevaux – 2CV, roll the top down, and grab a little sunshine.

For any new readers, here is the history of ‘the Duck’ in about a minute.

Enjoy – Karambolage:

Dora – aka “Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area”. The ‘Nati loves to celebrate and St. Patrick’s Day nears the top. Overnight most all pubs became green-beer havens!

On the riverfront in their Dora area all could participate in the shenanigans by taking part in the State’s shortest St. Patrick’s Day race. Participants ran 0.1 miles while holding a beer (any beer would do, Guinness gave you a yard or so head start). Before the race, people celebrated with Ohio’s shortest St. Patrick’s Day parade – 100 yards and carrying multiple beers (green was encouraged).

Propaganda – Lord Arthur Ponsonby was a British diplomat and politician (1871–1946). He was a member of the House of Lords. Being a keen and cagey fellow he pinpointed 10 rules of propaganda. Wherever around the world we look at past and current despots, the rules apply.

Springing forth to here, look at how disagreement to edicts and then how the disagreement is addressed in media and on microphones in the West. Do Ponsonby’s rules apply here too? Think of the many Covid edicts, our Ukraine involvement, Social Media constant spin, or even the handling of the Freedom Convoy in Canada; all require we give them careful thought.

These are Ponsonby’s ten rules:

    1. We don’t want war, we are only defending ourselves.
    2. The other guy is solely responsible for this war.
    3. Our adversary’s leader is evil and looks evil.
    4. We are defending a noble purpose, not special interest.
    5. The enemy is purposefully causing atrocities; we only commit mistakes.
    6. The enemy is using unlawful weapons
    7. We have very little losses, the enemy is losing big.
    8. Intellectuals and artists support our cause.
    9. Our cause is sacred.
    10. Those who doublt our propaganda are traitors.

Dutch politics – The activities currently seen in the Netherlands came about because the European Union in collaboration with the Dutch politicians have been pushing (forcing) rules the farmers couldn’t possibly meet. And, where the proposal was to mandate centuries old family farms (businesses) be sold to the government. This quickly brought about a, sometimes ugly, uproar.

This past week that nation had Provincial elections. A startup party (2019), the
Farmer Citizen Movement (BBB) or Farmers Party in the Netherlands from went from zero members in the Senate to now the majority – my observation is that sanity prevailed!

Were Ponsonby’s rules in play here? Will the farms stay?

Fin –
• Brother Pieter and I managed a quick get-together for lunch in Louisville, KY. A really fun time in a lovely (100+ varieties of Bourbon) pub restaurant.

• Of our local College teams only one, Xavier, is still on track towards the peak of basketball’s March Madness. Marcia, she being the College Varsity player of the sport, can hardly stand it and spends half the night scouring the radio dial seeking one game after another on radio. I think she’s hoping to catch another upset.

• Tomorrow we’re off to join our Contemporary Jazz Orchestra with about as much anticipation as possible; CCJO Meets Gospel: Amazing Grace. Hallelujah!

Ciao. Stay strong, be observant, and question all. Stay safe and healthy.

Keep on storming the castle. Pray for Peace.


03 11th, 2023

A smallish return to winter, but still, a happy Saturday morning to everyone. Here it’s still silent and I’m beginning to feel like it’s a calm before a storm. Oh well, Mr. Coffee just informed me that all is both good and ready. And “Whew”, just now restored my WiFi internet connection! A good half hour of hassling with the system and WiFi gear.

I did watch the House Subcommittee hearing on the “Twitter Files”. Here is how one of two journalists testifying, investigative reporter (for years writing for a very liberal Rolling Stone) Matt Taibbi, described the event:

”….it was more farcical horror and a parade of self-owns that made me more sad than upset……..much of the hubbub yesterday involved the many “When did Elon Musk start beating your wife?” questions…..”

The gas bubble in my eye is slowly dissipating and is at a point where each morning it’s shrunk a bit. This morning though, there is something new. Two small bubbles have broken away and attached to the larger main bubble. Now, as I am working on this Rambling, I keep seeing a Mickey Mouse head everywhere I look. Cute at first, but already it’s getting a bit old.

That Corner – Oh, you know, ‘That corner; Chaos & Mayhem. We spot more frequently than not, people racing around the bend, no stopping, then stomp on the accelerator and blast off – often with straight pipes so that everyone knows the ‘coolness’ of their wheels. This happens especially at night.

Then, how often is it that national car manufacturers unleash a new or updated model by demonstrating exorbitant speed and cornering on their TV ads?

To put all of that into some perspective I felt it time to share some data:

• The earth is spinning on its axis, so we’re already moving at 1,000mph
• Then, we circle the sun, doing so at a stately 67,000mph
• The sun which we revolve around is galloping around our galaxy at a speed of 514,495mph (remember, we too are being sucked along at that speed).
• The nearest sun with planets similar to ours is Proxima Centauri. The distance to Proxima Centauri is 4.2 light years or about 296,000 years of travel time at Voyager 2 speed; remember that we can only trace humanity as a cluster of early cave and tree dwellers back about 10,000 years. This means that undertaking such a journey is more than going across town. We aren’t going there anytime soon no matter how hard you stomp on your accelerator.

Bottom line: It’s laughable in that stomping down on the accelerator and roaring
your engine through the corner of Chaos and Mayhem does very little in the
grand scheme of things other than possibly waking me up. I don’t like to wake up grumpy!

For those who will still stomp their accelerator willy-nilly, watch this short description of what real speed and planning requires:

Vaioleti’s Week – was really special. Our original micro-preemie proved that she’s really come into her own; she’s become a shining star. So, this was her a-typical week.

Last Saturday she participated and represented her school, Clark Montessori
Highschool, at; ‘ECHO Youth Poetry Slam. 23 contestants and she easily (we think 2nd place – maybe it was 1st) slid into the finals to be held April 7. Here she is presenting her poem (I shared with a few folks earlier, to you, enjoy it one more time).

But, there was more. Her school’s Steel Drum Band (Clark Montessori – the nation’s first public Montessori High School) held a concert.

We’ve all heard the lighthearted Calypso music from such bands, and we had that. However, how about music from the 1980s group, the Eurythmics? Then, I was blown away when they began the first movement of Ludwig von Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5. What a special evening!


For the love of the waterfront – gave me some thought. Yesterday I read that the home of deceased radio host, Rush Limbaugh, was sold for $155-million. A piece of Palm Beach, FL waterfront property, 2.6 acres with 250 feet of direct ocean access. The article went on to list several moguls with similarly priced waterfront properties on that Florida coast. Then I remember reading that former President Obama and Bill Gates of Microsoft fame, also bought ocean front properties and McMansions.

So here’s the question; many of these people fervently support the spoutings of an activist ‘wunderkid’ like Greta Thunberg or those of globalists like our climate Czar John Kerry, our own ‘master of the carbon offsets’ Al Gore, and the WEF’s Klaus Schwab. Since they ‘seemingly’ buy the climate stuff aren’t they worried that all their seashore properties will be joining the sunken Lost City of Atlantis in a mere 12 years?
As the song goes:

Under the sea
Under the sea
Darling it’s better
Down where it’s wetter
Take it from me………..
………While we devotin’
Full time to floatin’
Under the sea

Gospel Jazz – Hallelujah, this coming week we’ll be going to see and listen to our Contemporary Jazz Orchestra and the Gospel music from several church choirs. The audio and pictures below are from the 2020 performance after which the subsequent events were rudely interrupted by the ‘Wu-Flu’. We’re truly excited that it’s back!

Have a listen to the old favorite; “Travelin’ Shoes”:


Fin –
Dinah, has a ‘magical’ piece of paper that allows her to sit behind the wheel of a car as a learner. Congratulations!

Two of our local College teams are still on track towards the peak of basketball’s March Madness. Marcia as a College Varsity player of the sport has game after game either on radio or TV – no end in sight.

Ciao. Stay strong, value life and everyone around you – it’s too short to do otherwise. Stay safe and healthy.

Keep on storming the castle. Pray for Peace.


Catching Up
03 4th, 2023

Happy Saturday morning. The heavy weather finally has rolled on through. Yesterday the rain was measured in inches. Tornados and straight-line winds caused havoc in counties surrounding ours. And, through it all we plodded. Plodded? Yes, plodded, I had my six week post surgery eye exam, and since we were on the north edge of town decided to drive another 12-minutes further north and head for Costco.

Other than loading ourselves and our goods into the truck – seemingly like we were doing it underneath a fire hose, all was good. Ok, now a sip of coffee and we’ll catch up.

you’re Old – when a man stops you in a Meijers parking lot and says; “every week I am given a back-seat load of Donuts to distribute to veterans and seniors, and you look worthy.” We received four boxes each containing 8 rich frosted Entenmann’s chocolate covered donuts.

And I did not have my sunglasses on or was using a cane, so have absolutely no idea why we were selected. And yes, we did have a nice little conversation.

The Eye – and I both got good news. I even got to see a nice blow-up photograph taken of the interior of my eye; scars and all. I was impressed enough so that I am certain that photo will be used as a centerfold in the next copy of ‘Ophthalmology Revealed’ magazine.

I was informed that the gas-bubble will be totally absorbed in about a week. As soon as it’s gone (i.e. I can’t see it anymore) I can do about everything I want, exercising, walking, swimming – all no problem.

Also, ranking right up there in the great news department, is the fact that I am done with eye drops.

It was a scary time at New Year when I was informed I might have lost a major chunk (like most) of my right eye vision, so thankful with the quality of care where all my vision is absolutely intact! Kudos to Dr. Miller, and all the staff of the Cincinnati Eye Institute — you’re the best.

Corner of Chaos and Mayhem – has really not changed. It’s not that nothing happens, it’s that the excitement and confusion to us has become somewhat commonplace.

Thursday evening we saw multiple cruisers pull a car over as it crossed the intersection – not certain but it appeared to be a drug bust. The driver was cuffed and the car towed.

The photo is from early in the week when a car had broken down by the corner ‘Stop’ sign and two cars piled into each other behind it. The broken car was towed as was the middle car since its Air Bags had gone off.

It’s better than any TV.

Our Poet – A couple of weeks ago three students were selected from Vaioleti’s school, Clark Montessori. These three made up a total of 20 students city wide entered into a poetry competition held at the University of Cincinnati’s Language and Arts Department. Vai was a ‘freshman’, the other two ‘seniors’.

One part of the competition was that each student was given an ‘opening’ word and a ‘closing’ word. The closing word became the starting word for the following student’s poem – each had a half hour to create this, their special poem.

When I heard what our Vai had written my goose bumps had baby goose bumps.

Today at 10:00 we’ll be on the UC campus for the finals presentation. Yes, Vai was selected to participate.

Are we proud? Do you really have to ask?

The Halifax Explosion – Our neighbor/friend who now reside in Halifax sent me a short animated film on the Halifax Explosion of 1916. A munitions ship carrying over 2000 tons of wartime munitions got broadsided in the Halifax harbor and caught fire.

The subsequent explosion blew away what was then the city of Halifax. It seems that a sailor caught in the explosion went airborne and fell back to earth and survived (apparently having been blown 2km away).

Two Canadian ladies created this beautifully done animation (almost Ballet-like) of the event and Bulent shared it with me. He got it through The New Yorker.

Now, one more coffee and then begin to get ready. Let the day begin!

To Dinah: happy, and successful, ‘rowing’ as a new 16-year old. Congratulations!

Ciao. Stay strong, Value life, its precious even should things ‘explode’ around you. Stay safe.

Keep on storming the castle. Pray for Peace.