Amazing! It’s Saturday morning, and Marcia was already up and the Coffee is made. So wonderful!

Outside it’s still dark and quiet, except that Marcia informed me that she saw a mom Raccoon with four young-uns cross the street. Couple that with the fox wandering up to our building’s front door earlier in the week and it makes me think we’re living in a wildlife sanctuary.

Add to the above the little family crossing the car-wash driveway while I was getting a car wash earlier in the week and the whole ‘sanctuary’ thing becomes certainty.

Breaking News – Is that Canada has agreed to open the border on August 9th.

Hold the presses! Not to be outdone by Trudeau, buffering brained Biden and his crack team of buffoons caused (as of July 21st) to have this headline be printed: “Despite Canadian easing, US extends land border restrictions”. The delay seems to be for another 30 days.

The US U.S. Department of Homeland Security says the extension is due to COVID rates in both Canada and Mexico, and says the risk of spread poses a “specific threat to human life or national interests.” These clowns have the temerity to make that insane statement even while the southern border has ceased to exist!

By September we’ll have had over 1-million illegal migrants storm across the border and flown (on our dime) across the nation; no health checks, no origin checks, no masks, no vax, and no papers whatsoever. It’s well beyond a slap in the face to those of us who followed the rule of law, stood in line, and swore a solemn oath to gain entry – even bringing a family Bible from seven generations back as providing proof of who we were (Kamala — there really were no faxes back then).

Anyway, the earlier prospect of travel to our Northern Comfort had some of us talking. It was nearby Earl Pitts who piped up just how he was getting ready for vacation travel. I happened to record his insights:

Should it still come to pass that travel north will be served on some silver platter; I have my personalized GPS routing already fully installed:

The Noise, Color, & more Noise – The accelerating pattern we observe is that more and more vehicles have thoroughly obnoxious exhaust blow-by noise-maker systems installed. A little noise, OK. It’s the over the top monster sound makers that need to stop. Couple that with a mega-watt amped up sound system, and the never ending bass booming Rap which makes the windows shake from almost a block away; now, that is horrendous. Is this rant an aging thing on my part?

The nearby village of St. Bernard has signage installed forbidding this noise stuff – and everybody knows that it’s categorically enforced. I guess that the minute these characters cross the village line and into Cin-City, everything gets ‘pumped’ up.

The Smirk Heard Round the World – earlier in the week we joined good friends Dave and Pat for lunch and they plus ‘moi’ (Marcia just came for lunch) took in a well-produced documentary film; The Boys in Red Hats. Although the incident was broadcast nightly for weeks by the media it was worthwhile seeing it all over again in detail, from various angles, and without spin.

You remember the event in Washington. A prominent nearby boys high school (Covington Catholic) had students go to DC for the annual March for Life. There they got caught up having to deal with activists who had gathered. Some video surfaced and the students’ red MAGA hats were all the media needed to see to spin their ‘mega’ (pun intended) event of the year. If you get a chance to see it I’ll discuss the film with you – should be fun.

Sunday afternoon in pictures – After the Wu-Flu shutdowns and the crippling effects on life as normal it was now a perfect day to wander Findlay Market. Lunch was at our standby Vietnamese Pho restaurant. Marcia ordering her favorite, a small bowl of Pho noodle soup and for me a new dish – a salad; G?i Tôm B?p C?i (shrimp salad) served in a sesame rice shell. It was stunningly good! We finished the afternoon’s wanderings with a sample flight of beer at the Samuel Adams Tap House.

   

Fini –
Reading a “gotta-finish-it-now” book written by Professor Gad Saad; The Parasitic Mind. A book about as insightful as I’ve come across and a brilliant read.

• Kevin Sorbo: “Remember to get vaccinated or a vaccinated person might get sick from the virus that they were vaccinated against because you’re not vaccinated.” See how that works?

This past week (July 21st) in 1969. Ohio’s Neil Armstrong became the first human to step on the Moon at 2:56:15 AM (GMT). Aldrin joined him 19 minutes later.

• Also on the 21st, Robin Williams would have turned 70. A comic like none other.

• Yesterday (July 23rd) in 1961 Grace Bumbry, Mezzo-Soprano, became the first black American opera singer to perform at the Bayreuth Festival Opera House in Germany performing as Venus in the then new production of Tannhauser. She received a 30-minute standing ovation and 42 bows. Wow! Now at age 88 she is still an active performer.

Earlier in the week Becca Meyers withdrew from the Tokyo Paralympic Games. She was to represent our country in swimming competition. Becca who is deaf-blind athlete has always had her mother with her as her personal assistant. The USOPC had a single assistant assigned to 33 athletes and refused her needs accommodation request due to Covid restrictions. Bureaucracy at its best.

• Scott Adams (of Dilbert fame); “A lot of Biden’s public statements come off the same when you read them backwards.” This was never more evident than watching the CNN Town Hall event held here in the ‘Nati this past week.

• Crazy. Since 2000, Germany has spent $600-billion on climate science. Since then nothing beneficial has been accomplished. However it has come to the point that electricity costs are now so high that it has now begun to be viewed as a luxury good.

OK, it’s daylight. Tomorrow things should moderate, but today it’s going for a 90 degree temperature along with 93% humidity. “Now isn’t that special” as the Church Lady would say.

Dirk


My, my, yesterday I had to race home from a walk to beat a lightning storm. Today, Saturday morning, I woke up to the sound of pounding rain. Well, it’s approaching the ‘crack of dawn’ and my Coffee is ready. This means I too am ready to beginning this Rambling.

Breaking News – well, at least news that is not that old: MUFON has set up Permanent Headquarters in Cincinnati.

So what is MUFON you ask? At a time when our little town is struggling as much as any other city we grabbed MUFON. With more than 600 trained investigators and 4,200 members across the world to investigate UFO sightings all UFO sighting photographs will be ‘smudged’ into faintly visible, black & white, grainy pictures; each made ready for distribution right here in Cin-City. See, MUFON stands for the Mutual UFO Network. Welcome to town boys, things are looking up (pun). 

The Corner of Calm & Mundane – had stayed this way for three complete weeks; till Thursday that is. Returning from some exercise I noticed a wall of large ‘Cherry-picker’ style trucks surrounding our building.

The first thing that came through my mind was a mental image of people seeing the arrival of Hannibal (the ancient Carthaginian general), as he crossed the Alps using Elephants. His was to lay siege on Sagunto, Spain, but what I saw was a ‘siege’ on our unsuspecting home.

In reality it was any number of orange traffic cones moving the traffic lanes into confusing swirls. Then, there were five of the truck on the side and in front of our place (these the modern day ‘elephants’). It was something with the underground telephone system further down the road. Why ‘Cherry pickers’ I still don’t know. By rush hour they had disappeared – I guess the ‘battle’ had been won.

Our Climate – This week I came across a quote by climate panic ‘wunderkind’ Greta Thunberg, still the most prominent face of the hysterical climate-change bunch (man controlled of course). What made her latest quote cause my ‘antenna’ (staying with the MUFON theme) to twitch was the less than subtle change in the Climate alarmism drum beat:

” The climate crisis is not just about the environment. It is a crisis of human rights, of justice and of political will. Colonial, racist and patriarchal systems of oppression have created and fueled it. We need to dismantle them all.” ~ Greta Thunberg

It’s moved beyond the ‘nothing-burger’ of the “12-years to the end” climate nonsense into a pure Marxist trope. As has been said better than I could; “None of that is morally or rationally coherent. But it is very emotionally satisfying.”

Using the title from Jimmy Buffet’s: A Love Song (From A Different Point Of View), these are the earnest words from actor Leonard Nimoy spoken a mere handful of years ago. How quickly we forget:

Shock – well not really so much; I was wondering when I’d receive the notification. Let me back up. September 2019 was the last time I saw Northern Comfort. Everything was tucked in its regular winter hiatus. The dock was cantilevered out of the lake, the pontoon and little Sea Nymph stored and ‘tarped’ securely. Mentally we were already preparing for the 2020 season.

Then the Wuhan virus hit. Panic struck, and governments across the world made one horrific decision after another.

Worst was the turning over of life as we knew it to a handful of friendly ‘health’ professionals; while simultaneously shutting down all other voices. Couple that with the emergence of a breed of dictatorial potentates; these emerged in a stealth manner akin to the Cicadas we saw this spring. And they absolutely worshiped themselves in their new ‘power’ roles.

Quickly the border leading to our Northern Comfort was closed (‘sealed’ is the better word). And now for two seasons we’ve been, by force, prevented from even checking up on the place. So what’s the “shock”? It was the receipt of the twice yearly Property Tax bill. These Dictators across nations, States, Provinces, and Cities, have shut everything not to their liking, and kept anything they wanted in use and viable. They’ve killed economies, they’ve killed off lifetimes of toil and effort, they’ve killed off minimally a year’s worth of learning from our youths, and killed off thousands upon thousands of elderly by horrible edicts (all because of a virus which by the way, has a 95% – 99% survivability especially if there are no underlying issues).

Yet, they and their cronies live almost better than prior to the Wuhan thing as their personal revenue stream never slowed. But those continuing paychecks cost real money. Hence, receiving this Property Tax bill has become another “slap in the face”. Worst of all, we’re almost powerless to react.

The latest whim (none of this has been based on ‘science’) is that sometime after mid-August the border ‘could’ open. Maybe if we all kneel and curtsey while screaming “THANK YOU” in unison it will really happen; prostrate.

Missing “Vinyl Tap” – After approaching nearly a decade of me listening for two hours most Saturday evenings it’s come to the end of “Vinyl Tap,” the radio show hosted by guitarist Randy Bachman.

Bachman was a founding member of the Guess Who and Bachman-Turner Overdrive bands and played with virtually every musician of note since.

Every Saturday evening was filled with ‘bits’ on classic rock, jazz and contemporary pop alongside reflections on the ‘insides’ of the music industry.

Until the ‘plug’ was pulled on this hugely popular Canadian Broadcasting (CBC) show, the mainstay of their weekend lineup. But, some desk jockey at the government funded CBC thought the better and canned to show. Now I’m waiting to see where Randy re-emerges, ‘cause he will.

Fini –
• Just thought you’d want to know that Tim Hale, an Army reservist, walked through an open door into the halls of Congress on January 6; he did no harm, he chanted. Hale has been incarcerated for six months. Transported to 6 different jails before arriving in DC Jail. Now the DOJ wants him to cop to the one felony count of obstruction. At hearing, Judge: “Pretty old case for defendant to be sitting in jail.” Really? Effin right!

• MLB, Major League Baseball’s All-Star game numbers were horrible. Why?

• NFL, why is the TV viewership declining?

• NBA, TV ratings continue to decline, why?

• As noted, professional sports ratings seem to be quickly heading for a ratings ‘cliff’. Possibly, just possibly, could it be that people refuse to be politically lectured by multimillionaire sports figures and be subjected to all sorts of Woke visuals by team management? Possibly even a companies such as Nike publicly declaring themselves as “Chinese”, are they playing a part?

• What’s a “Smoot”? Were you aware it’s a measurement? By way of a prank a fellow by the name of Oliver Smoot, as a lark by his MIT Fraternity, in October 1958 lay down repeatedly on the Harvard Bridge (between Boston and Cambridge, Massachusetts) so that his fraternity brothers could use his height to measure the length of the bridge. At 5’7” the 2,035 ft bridge was measured to be 364.4 smoots (+ 1 ear).

Best seen For Sale sign  this week while on a walk:

Daylight is here. The rain has stopped. Next post this epistle and then some breakfast. Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, and head outdoors into the fresh air (the best way to stave of the Wuhan)!

Dirk


It’s a cool Saturday morning (64) and even with the humidity in the eighties, it’s really a decent morning. Coffee isn’t on yet, I’ll do that in a few. What we are expecting is a couple+ inches of rain during the weekend. We’ll see.

I awoke by a general alarm being pushed through my mobile – 3:30AM. Reaching over to see what was that urgent I happened to pick up my phone upside down. Turning it around had this bit of importance disappear into cyber-space. More than likely it was to alert that an unoccupied car had rolled down a driveway – oh say – somewhere in Pittsburgh. Anyway, I really don’t have a clue what all that was about; other than that I am now awake. On that note, a good morning to all.

A little bit late, but here is a thought for the Fourth of July:

”Cling to this day—cling to it, and to its principles, with the grasp of a storm-tossed mariner to a spar at midnight.” ~ Frederick Douglas, 4th of July Oration, 1852

After escaping from slavery, Douglas became a social reformer, abolitionist, orator, writer, and statesman. His life displays how America is and was the land of hope for everyone – unlike what the Marxists thinking embedded in Critical Race Theory is trying to foist on us. Don’t be fooled.

Hope for our nation is summarized in this 1½ minute audio piece, a smidgen from a wonderful discussion between former Speaker Newt Gingrich and historian Allen C. Guelzo. Important during these strange times of upheaval, disarray, and disorder. If you want the whole 40 minute discussion, look up “Newt’s World Episode 274: Allen Guelzo on July 4, 1776” or just click here.

Video – A video which is different from the norm and for the reason I’ll explain momentarily shortly. This amazingly powerful statement was made by Mr. Hillel Neuer. Neuer is a Canadian-born international lawyer, writer, and the executive director of U.N Watch., a human rights NGO and U.N. watchdog group based in Geneva, Switzerland.

In the meantime:

The Corner of Calm & Mundane – we thought continued in this manner for the whole week. For two days Marcia and I were entertained by a team of Tree Trimmers. It was amazing how much overhang and dead wood was removed; and done in the most acrobatic fashion. It was wonderful seeing it all from our little window on the world.

Then things changed a bit. No, not the mayhem I’ve described so often. This time the action came from three blocks away (behind the Belvedere where my mother lived for a decade). A house located there is gorgeous “Italianate” and is up for sale. And an accepted offer is in play.

Seems like a Catholic order [the Legionaries of Christ] want/need a zoning change from single family status to something termed ‘Monastery’ – their proposed purpose is to rotate up to 10 priests through the place. Hence it would be more akin to something I would label; ‘Motel’.

Originally the city zoning board was amenable. Some further digging uncovered that the Order’s was founded in Mexico in 1941 by a priest named Marcial Maciel – now deceased. Maciel was accused of sexual-abuse and has now been connected to over 60 cases of abuse to minors.

And so it began. It’s since come to light that 33 members of the order were found to have committed abuse as priests or deacons, including 18 active members as of 2019. Further, that millions of dollars are parked in offshore tax havens (according to an AP article).

Hence, it was mid-week when Marcia and I sat on the couch much akin to the way people gathered around their radios to hear the old FDR ‘Fireside Chats’, only now we were watching on Zoom.

Consequently the neighborhood is abuzz! Lawyers hired, even I wrote a letter. It didn’t take long before a ‘zoning change’ decision postponement was granted. Tuesday evening a scheduled neighborhood association meeting will take place.

Now that the ‘hornet’s’ nest has been shaken it’s also come to life. I’ll keep you posted.

Anti Semitism – is alive and well. In New York City security camera videos crop up weekly showing thugs ‘sucker punching’ Jewish looking folk without cause. In Western Europe there is an upsurge of anti-Semitism and it’s revolting.

During WWII my parents gave shelter and aid to neighboring Jewish folk and within my own family I have loved ones I proudly call ‘Jewish’. Today, what we’re seeing is nothing more than very hurtful scapegoating of a people. You’d think we were beyond such nonsense, but apparently not.

As a nation we hand over millions and millions of dollars to the United Nations. At almost 10% of their budget we are the largest financial contributor to the U.N. (India is second). Yet, we are not a member of the U.N. Human Rights Council. Want to see who’s on this council? Now does the video clip by Hillel Neuer of U.N. Watch I opened with make sense? Possibly a ‘sense’ of disgust?

Fini –
• Happy Birthday this past week to Marin (the big 18). And next week to brother Pieter (well beyond his 18th)

• I find it amazing that here are two ‘hard-science” Covid experts who got “peer-reviewed” by the mob and virtually erased from social media. Stuff like that gives credence to President Trump’s just filed lawsuit. Indeed, we’ve all been hurt by these ‘nation within a nation’ corporations refusal to allow for serious debate and input. If interested these experts I thought of are Dr. Knut M. Wittowski and Dr. John P.A. Laonnidis.

• I purchased a jug of Wet & Forget (outdoors). Whenever there is a window of opportunity (mostly weather related) I’ll head over to Spring Grove cemetery to clean up my parent’s tombstone. Full report on how well the stuff works will be forthcoming.

This past week in 1885, our (very) distant namesake, Louis Pasteur successfully administered an anti-rabies vaccine to a 9-year old boy, saving his life.

• Higher taxes through any variety of means are to be used to change earth’s climate – utter nonsense. ¾ of a billion years ago and for a period of 75-million years our earth was buried under ice from the poles to the equator. This ice period was due to the massive release of volcanic sulphur dioxide. Nature is the control mechanism not power grabbing and wealth theft.

Heroes, this week it’s French art historian Rose Valland. She was a member of the French resistance during WWII and secretly recorded the details of the Nazi plunder of French and Jewish owned art.

• As SNL’s “Church Lady” would say “Isn’t that special?” President Biden just gave Raytheon $2-Billion for atomic cruise missile development. His Secretary of Defense just happened to have been a Raytheon board member prior to his jump over.

• It’s true; yeah right.

  • I do believe we still have the 2nd Amendment in place. Biden: “we need to go community-by-community, neighborhood-by-neighborhood, and oft times door-to-door, literally knocking on doors”, getting people vaccinated. And in case you wonder, yes, I’ve been vaccinated (J&J)
  • Israel just sent 700,000 soon to expire Pfizer vaccines to South Korea so they wouldn’t go to waste. By the way, the Palestinians rejected that offer – apparently they choose hatred over common sense.

• Best bumper (actually fuel door) sticker seen this week.

• Want to understand politics? You can’t until you understand that (most if not all) politicians aren’t trying to solve your problems, just their own. Getting elected and reelected are numbers 1 and 2. Anything left for a number 3 usually is lost in the hub-bub.

• Finally, remember that the Titanic was designed by experts…..

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, and head outdoors and for many, make it the best BBQ ever!

Dirk


It’s Saturday morning and here it’s supposed to be spectacular (and I thought yesterday was already pretty good). The coffee (still Seattle’s Best) is ready so with further slowdown, let’s get rolling with the Ramblings.

Earlier in the week we had Flash Flood warnings all over the place as the rains came and kept on coming. A few blocks from A & T’s home police dispatch alerted that a middle of the road storm-sewer lid on one of our main roadways had blown off and water was spouting 2.5’ to 3’ in the air. All is normal now – nothing to see.

With all the travel over the fourth (except those of us desperately wanting to open our camps in Canada – border is still closed) people are beginning to notice that inflation has begun to rise. Although our President made it clear that this year a Fourth of July backyard BBQ will save you $0.16 over the one last year:
Quotation:

”Inflation is when you pay fifteen dollars for the ten-dollar haircut you used to get for five dollars when you had hair.” ~ Sam Ewing, US Senator D-NC (described himself as a “country lawyer”) 1896 – 1974

I remember Senator Ewing somewhat, especially his storytelling done in his native southern drawl. What I didn’t realize was that he along with Senator Byrd (D-WV) were two very prominent Senators who were both staunch defenders of the horrid Jim Crow laws and racial segregation.

The Fourth of July – is more than just celebration of our nation’s Independence. It’s also Made in USA Day, I Forgot Day, Freedom from Fear of Speaking Day, National Anisette Day, and we can’t forget the old (favorite?) World UFO Day.

So whichever one you choose to celebrate – ENJOY!

I know no-one more patriotic than my old buddy, former Air Force officer, Walton Lee B. who I’ve known for over 50 years. Walton Lee grew up in small-town North Carolina and still, every time we talk, swears that: the “South will Rise Again.”

Yesterday on my walk I happened on a couple of guys doing some work on one of their homes in Norwood. Norwood is made up of hard working blue collar folk; for years all of the Pontiac Firebird muscle cars were made there. Our little chat moved around a bit which led to them opening the garage door to show off, hanging in the rafters, their prized Confederate battle flag. Question, is it now illegal to possess one of these? Anyway, it’s a prize since this one also has country singer Hank (Bocephus) Williams Jr on it. So, Walton Lee ole buddy, I took a picture of that scarred flag just for you!

Since this weekend is a celebratory one I couldn’t resist what follows. And since I mentioned blue collar hard-scrapping communities, here is something by the ’90s-ladies choir of Lima, OH (home of the Airstream trailers, and most of our military Tanks). The introduction is by the Right Reverend Jimmy B:

Thomas Sowell – is nothing but a ‘diamond’ on the American landscape. This week (B – June 30, 1930) he turned 91 and is still very active in his field of Economics, also as a social theorist and senior fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. He is a brilliant thinker. Happy Birthday Professor Sowell.

He came into the national forefront when he was asked, as a Black man, to attend the hearings for Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork (1987). Sowell was given 10 minutes to make a case for Bork’s character. It was then Senator Biden who pushed Sowell on Sowell’s stance against Affirmative Action. If you read The Federalist notes on that hearing it’s quick to see that in response to the slander of being a racist, it was Sowell who brilliantly ran circles around Biden. The short Federalist read will be worth your while.

“Advice to the young. You don’t have to listen to anybody. You can learn everything from your own personal experience. Of course, you will be at least 50 years old by the time you know what you need to know at 25.” ~ Thomas Sowell

Pandemonium Corner? – Over time I’ve often referenced our little corner to the world, the corner I refer to as Chaos & Mayhem. It’s dawned on me that the ‘picture’ I have painted is one of cars laying askew, blown airbags, EMT units all lit up, and Fire equipment blocking the roadway. All this is true.

However there is a lot more. Like any great ‘painting’ it must present a balance. This corner also does just that. Yesterday, between the hubbub of traffic heading home to get ready for Independence Day weekend, it was the more mundane that caught my attention – tree trimming. Yup, here at Chaos & Mayhem we also see the Calm & Mundane.

Fini – and before I forget, this week it was wishing a Happy Birthday to Kellen and ‘sil’ Jolene. many, many more.

• School’s out. This row of student housing had the little dears head back to their Parental Unit’s home. It’s the landlords of the student housing who truly see what these kids (most first time ever out of the ‘nest’) accomplish living on their own for a whole year.

• Both nutty and absurd our government is about to add a third gender option to folk applying for a passport. That our government gets sucked into this kind of ‘playtime’ nonsense and then foists it off on us is beyond comprehension.

• It was one athlete, coming in third, who got all the media attention because of her disrespect to our nation in the Olympic pre-ups. The ladies who came in first and second were not even mentioned by name by most media. Let me correct this; DeAnna Price came in first in the Hammer Throw and Brooke Andersen came in second. DeAnna broke her own record with a throw of 80.31m. Previously it was unheard of for a woman to beat the 80m mark.

• Climate ‘experts’ were sure that the Maldive Islands would be underwater in 30 years due to melting ice caps and rising seas. I just want to point out to these alarmist scam artists that now, 32 years later, the Maldives are larger. And, from the electroverse.net comes this exposure of a bogus climate report which blames global cooling on warming. Now the trace gas’ CO2 emissions are responsible for everything. Perfect “doublethink’ as detailed by George Orwell years ago.

• Little mentioned in news on the Surfside condominium collapse disaster is that both Israel and Mexico had immediately sent their crack Search and Rescue teams to assist. Personally I think this would be Page-one stuff, but sadly it wasn’t.

• It had to happen. This week, after a year of riots and plunder a Target store in Baltimore is closing down for good. Now the NYT writes angrily that the store is showing a; lack of commitment to black communities. These propagandists are beyond belief.

• Vaioleti and Viliami both received year end grade honors at school and were given a pass to the Cincinnati Zoo for themselves and three guests for a special evening. Marcia and I joined in the fun. Sponsored by FC Cincinnati, this included a photo op with our new soccer team’s mascot – named “Gary”.

• And yes, the Zoo evening would not have been complete without the perfunctory rain shower.

• In France there is a field of perfectly good looking government vehicles – EVs. The only thing required for each is a new battery pack. However, there are two issues; 1st the battery pack replacement cost are more than double than the cost of a new vehicle. 2nd no landfill or disposal site in France will accept the batteries for disposal. Didn’t see that coming did we?

• Now I’m hearing a bunch about the Covid Delta variant. I spent a career in business and I recognize repackaging when I see it – I haven’t seen the words “new and improved” yet. Let it be known that my masks are long gone.

• It was July 1st 1997 and the first day of the beginnings of a new, brighter, and more glorious future for Hong Kong. Britain signed over their colony to China with ‘guaranteed’ freedoms, independence, and self-rule for the next 50 years. Oh those trustworthy Chinese Party members. How are they still able to suck in the western world’s politicians and their beneficiaries, day after day? Should we ask a lad named Hunter?

Make it great week people, keep the peace, be happy, stay safe, and head outdoors and for many, make it the best BBQ ever!

Dirk


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