Saturday, 4 June 2016

09:41 – I didn’t remember until after dinner yesterday that it was the 49th anniversary of the day that Billie Joe McAllister jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge.

We just started rewatching the HBO series Rome on Amazon streaming. It’s historically inaccurate, but what drives me really nuts is that the characters all pronounce Latin words very badly. Jool-ee-us See-zur instead of Yool-ee-us Kie-ssar. Siss-ur-oh instead of Kee-kur-oh, Kay-toe instead of Kah-toe, Tye-tus instead of Tee-tus, Loo-see-us instead of Luke-ee-us, and so on. Mrs. Shreffler, my junior high Latin teacher, would have rapped all their knuckles. They also don’t understand the most extraordinary characteristic of Caesar as a military commander: his ability to move huge numbers of men and heavy equipment large distances in incredibly short times. Historically, that’s been the notable characteristic of the best ground commanders, from Alexander to Caesar to Gustavus Adolphus to Nathan Bedford Forrest (get there first with the most…) to George S. Patton. Caesar redeployed in literally days what his opponents expected to take weeks, giving them a nasty shock by doing so. Patton did the same during the Ardennes Offensive.

Barbara is out doing yard work. She’s always wanted to get rid of the rotting pile of firewood down in the back corner of the yard. I’d told her months ago that that was fine, but I wanted to have a cord of new firewood before we did that. She thought the pickup load we got in last month fulfilled that, but I was speaking of a literal cord rather than the face cord we had brought in. That was roughly 40% of a full cord. I told Barbara yesterday to go ahead and have James haul off the old rotting stuff, but I wanted to make it a very high priority to build a couple more firewood racks and get another couple pickup loads of new firewood stacked in them.

We’re building chemistry kits this weekend. This batch will take us up to reasonably good stocking levels going into June; about three dozen finished chemistry kits, two dozen biology kits, and a dozen forensics kits. Once we get that done, it’ll be back to labeling and filling more bottles, building more subassemblies, and building more finished kits. By the beginning of August, we’ll have bunches of kits stacked up and ready to ship.

Also this weekend, weather allowing, we’re going to plant some test seeds in our garden as well as some herbs in pots on the deck.

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52 Responses to Saturday, 4 June 2016

  1. Dave says:

    I told Barbara yesterday to go ahead and have James haul off the old rotting stuff, but I wanted to make it a very high priority to build a couple more firewood racks and get another couple pickup loads of new firewood stacked in them.

    Forgive me for stating the obvious, but wouldn’t it make more sense to have James drop off another truckload of firewood and haul off the rotting stuff at the same time?

  2. MrAtoz says:

    An article from engadget on some solar cookers.

  3. MrAtoz says:

    A judge has ordered Cankles email server IT guy to show the immunity agreement he has before he can plead the 5th in a civil trial. As one commenter stated “Now is when he commits suicide by shooting himself in the back of the head.” This guy is going to end up on that long list of Klinton deaths.

  4. brad says:

    Teachers obviously shouldn’t have sex with students. Weird that the kid’s family had no problems with this. And her getting pregnant is the cherry on top of the stupidity.

    That said, I doubt the kid felt terribly abused

  5. Dave says:

    Teachers obviously shouldn’t have sex with students.

    Then how are they supposed to have sex at the workplace if there are no male teachers?

  6. nick says:

    Yeah, this ignores the fundamental differences between teen girls and teen boys. He probably felt like a rock star.

    The pregnancy must have been terrifying, but different cultures…..


  7. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    I’ve never understood this phenomenon. A few of these women are physically unattractive, but most of them are reasonably attractive and some are really pretty. They shouldn’t have any trouble finding men their own age or older, and I wonder what attraction they could possibly have to 12- and 14-year-old boys.

    All of that said, I think it’s their business. Age of consent laws used to be pretty reasonable, often 12 or younger for boys and 14 or younger for girls. (IIRC, Delaware used to set the age of consent for girls at 7, which I’ll admit seemed way too low.) I’ve always believed that nature provided a built-in age of consent, called puberty.

  8. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    I’ve always thought the old Chinese yardstick made a lot of sense: a wife should be half her new husband’s age plus seven years. That means a guy of 14 marries a girl of 14, a guy of 18 marries a girl of 16, a guy of 30 marries a girl of 22, a guy of 40 marries a girl of 27, a guy of 60 marries a girl of 37, and so on.

  9. OFD says:

    “…the 49th anniversary of the day that Billie Joe McAllister jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge.”

    Which might have got him a twisted ankle or something, as it was, and the rebuilt bridge is, only about twenty feet high. And depending on the time of year, he mighta got wet, too. Ms. Gentry won’t say what it was they threw off the bridge, though.

    “A judge has ordered Cankles email server IT guy to show the immunity agreement he has before he can plead the 5th in a civil trial. As one commenter stated “Now is when he commits suicide by shooting himself in the back of the head.” This guy is going to end up on that long list of Klinton deaths.”

    Too much visibility for that now, I suspect. But the question is, will the powers-that-be really allow Field Marshal Rodham to be indicted while the campaign is underway, or will they wait to see if she’s elected and then do it, or is it all just theater for the masses of rubes and bumpkins out here? I’m gonna guess they’ll wait and see if she gets in, and then the story will be, oh gee, no, we can’t do that with a sitting President, it’s a matter of “national security” now. Which would be yuuuuuugely ironic, of course.

    But if Trumpster gets in, they will probably go full steam ahead with it.

    Mostly sunny today with some big puffy cumulus clouds up there, maybe t-storm or shower later. Out to the yahd to make another dent in the pile of chit I have waiting for me, do it for twenty minutes, sit for ten, etc. Tedious, but a nice day on the bay.

  10. nick says:

    Rainy here, over an inch since midnight.

    Poking away at my office and garage.

    “Too much visibility for that now” –never stopped them before. If I were him, I’d avoid being alone in a car, flying in a small airplane, or being home alone. I’d also be arming up and thinking about private security. Oh, and I’d be screaming to everyone I know that I wasn’t suicidal, for whatever good it will do.


  11. nick says:

    just threw out 1.5 feet of magazines.


  12. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    Geez, I’d have taken them, particularly if they were AR-15 or Mini-14 magazines.

  13. MrAtoz says:

    Geez, I’d have taken them, particularly if they were AR-15 or Mini-14 magazines.


  14. nick says:

    Hah, they were 4 year old issues of CPU, and some electrical industry trade magazines.

    But that reminds me that I probably need new mag springs for all those AK mags I don’t have anymore…..


  15. MrAtoz says:

    I tried to update a program on my W7 virtual machine and got an “out of space error.” What the Hell! MS downloaded W10 and used up all my VM space. Deleted that since I don’t intend on updating the VM. I do plan on another VM with W10. I run them off a Elgato External Thunderbolt drive.

  16. OFD says:

    “MS downloaded W10 and used up all my VM space.”

    Haha. Some guys just never get the word. Dint I tell ya that the bastids put 10GB of Winblows 10 update files in a folder on my 8.1 machine here months ago? Dat’s da kinda chit they do!

    Weed-whacked and chain-sawed some more here and cleared away a bunch of flotsam and jetsam from the side and back of wife’s shed/studio in preparation for installing bigger windows on it and also hanging up kayaks and putting the canoes up on cradles. Also cleared away jungle for the rear perimeter fence. Outta gas for a while now. Taking a break. I have three more piles of flotsam to gather up from around the yard and dump on the rotting pallets to the rear of the shed, though, may get to it today, may not. And we’re set to get “heavy rain” tomorrow and showers the rest of the week so we’ll be clearing out and cleaning the back porch and I’ll be up in the attic on that Manhattan Project.

  17. dkreck says:

    Clear hot and predicted 107°F. Stay in the pool, no yard work.

  18. OFD says:

    “… but what drives me really nuts is that the characters all pronounce Latin words very badly. Jool-ee-us See-zur instead of Yool-ee-us Kie-ssar.”

    Two points:

    1.) It’s a tee-vee show for contemporary Murkan derps who may not give a rap for ancient Roman history anyway but will dig the sex and violence. The perpetrators certainly aren’t gonna have the characters “talking funny” and turning off the vast unwashed public.

    2.) Even the classicist teachers and profs lucky enough to get and keep jobs have mostly given up on pronouncing classical Latin correctly so far as I can see and hear. And we all know by now that what we hear at Latin mass is closer to medieval Latin and medieval Italian than Cicero, Ovid, Horace, Juvenal, Catullus, et. al.

    And a quick note: the high skool AP Latin exam is vastly mostly based on Virgil and his “Aeneid.” There are, of course, several excellent modern translations of it, but I prefer to read Dryden’s version and for extra kicks, the one done by the Right Reverend Gavin Douglas, Bishop of Dunkeld, in medieval Lallans Scottish. I got turned on to that, like many other things in literature, by the late Ezra Pound.

  19. OFD says:

    More Microslop hijinks and boffo laffs:

    “Iain Thomson, writing for The Register:
    When you’re stuck in the middle of the Central African Republic (CAR) trying to protect the wildlife from armed poachers and the Lord’s Resistance Army, then life’s pretty tough. And now Microsoft has made it tougher with Windows 10 upgrades. The Chinko Project manages roughly 17,600 square kilometres (6,795 square miles) of rainforest and savannah in the east of the CAR, near the border with South Sudan. Money is tight, and so is internet bandwidth. So the staff was more than a little displeased when one of the donated laptops the team uses began upgrading to Windows 10 automatically, pulling in gigabytes of data over a radio link. And it’s not just bandwidth bills they have to worry about. “If a forced upgrade happened and crashed our PCs while in the middle of coordinating rangers under fire from armed militarized poachers, blood could literally be on Microsoft’s hands,” said one member of the team.
    This is not a one-off case. We’re reading about similar incidents everyday. Automatic updates, accidental automatic update, and the humongous data that these updates eat are ruining user experience for many. These are real issues. It’s been roughly a year since Windows 10 has been officially available to consumers, and Microsoft is yet to address the issue.”

    (stolen from /.)

  20. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    Why wouldn’t they be running Linux?

  21. nick says:

    Stolen or donated lappy, already had os on it…..


  22. nick says:

    Trying the photo thing again,

    one raised bed (the most complex one) with the grape arbor:

    my on fence “window boxes”, with kale and turnips mostly


    It’s hard to see in the photo, there is a 1 foot by the width of the planter area in front. It’s mostly hidden by the potted plants.

    Here’s a sketchup of the concept. It changed slightly but I can’t find the finished model. (Mainly it changed because of the salvage material. When you are working around salvage, be ready to change your design to accommodate the material.)

    Mostly dark green leafys in the top area, herbs in the lower ~4×4 area on the right, onions in the lower 1 ft x 14 ft front tier. One grape vine at the base of each end of the arbor.

  23. OFD says:

    “Trying the photo thing again…”

    Wow, them are nice!

    I’ll have to put pics of our setup somewhere online this summer, too, lol; we’re talking VERY rustic and slapdash by comparison. Y’all got a head staht on us, of course.

    Mrs. OFD informed me yesterday she got some rhubarb to try out; neighbor across the street always has a bunch of it. Wife also got another lilac tree yesterday and I hadda get that outta the car and drop it onto a two-wheeler, rather heavy bugger. (it had taken two adult males to get it into the car at the gahden center earlier). She’s more focused on flowers and ephemeral stuff like rhubarb while I wanna get some root veggies to try this year. To that end, I got us a bunch of them grow-bags recently and we gotta fill ’em up with dirt and compost. We also have several primitive raised beds in the back we can experiment on. I plan to stock up on root veggies for cellar storage anyway, in addition to the regular staples.

    Next priority major expenses are getting the Saab fixed up, a couple of grand right there, and then, other than bigger windows in the shed/studio and some more fencing out front, probably some bucks on an electrician coming in, and I will be lobbying for an outdoor tool/storage shed before next winta and also a generator.

  24. nick says:

    On another note, this story will actually benefit millions. Hearing loss sucks.


    (if you had any doubt about the stupidity of people who comment on MSM articles, just read….)

  25. nick says:

    the beds have to look nice to get spousal buy in. She’s very pleased with the result, although she could do without all the pots in front.


  26. nick says:

    Another angle, and a construction detail from another bed.

    There aren’t any fasteners. They just interlock with rebar driven in the corners and long sides to keep them lined up as one layer just sits on the other (in some places.)


  27. nick says:

    Not everything works out the way I’d like.

    This ‘ladder’ of window boxes is made from fence boards and a couple of 2x4s. Where it is located, the top 2 boxes are in shade, and don’t get rain.

    Peppers seem to do well in the cedar boxes but not much else did.


    (bonus shot of my wood pile. Lots of pecan twigs for the smoker. Not much call for wood burning here in Houston.) Some clean up to do 🙂

  28. Greg Norton says:

    The old rotting firewood may have been the sacrificial pile intended to keep the local termites happy and away from the real firewood as well as the house.

    Do people do that in North Carolina?

    My parents had a sacrifical wood pile in Florida since we lived in a frame house, but they also had the good fortune of building before the most effective chemical foundation treatments were banned.

  29. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    I think it’s too far away, maybe 100 feet or more. I do have a gallon of the good stuff tucked away, and I could always make up more right here in the sink.

  30. nick says:

    One thing in every estate sale, if the home is the original owner… brown bottles of “the good stuff” in the garage. Labels missing, sometimes horrible poisonous stink, they never used the good stuff. Thus proving the .gov right. All their issues could be handled by less powerful poisons.

    I’ve refused to enter a couple of garages the stink was so bad….


  31. Sam Olson says:

    “After 35 years of drinking coffee only occasionally, I’ve started drinking it regularly.”

    “After 35+ years of drinking “Coke” regularly for it’s sugar and caffeine high, I’ve had to quit the sugar, and am now substituting coffee to maintain my caffeine intake.”

    There, fixed that for ya !!

    You might want to check out …

    Coffee: The Great Energy Sapper
    by Frederic Patenaude

    The effects of caffeine on the body are well researched, but you never hear about them in your newspaper. You never hear about them anywhere because the whole nation, if not the whole world, is addicted to caffeine. Doctors, journalists, scientists, writers — everyone drinks coffee. Those whose job is to inform us are usually heavy coffee drinkers. And few of them ever rise up to speak against this popular drug.

    But one did. His name is Stephen Cherniske, a scientist who spent 10 years of his life researching the effects of caffeine on the body and compiling them in a shocking document, “Caffeine Blues.”

    On the first page of this book we can read:

    – Caffeine can’t provide energy, only chemical stimulation and an induced emergency state that can lead to irritability, mood swings, and panic attacks.

    – Caffeine’s ultimate mood effect can be letdown, which can lead to depression and chronic fatigue.

    – Caffeine gives the illusion of heightened alertness by dilating pupils, quickening heart rate, and raising blood pressure. In fact, caffeine does not increase overall mental activity.

    Here’s a list of the various sections in the “review” …

    * The Great Caffeine Hoax
    * The Law of Excitation
    * Tolerance
    * But how did we come to drink coffee?
    * Toxicity of Coffee
    * Chocolate
    * But everyone drinks coffee!
    * Caffeine and Impaired Digestion
    * Caffeine and Sleep Disturbance
    * Caffeine & Malnutrition
    * Caffeine and Mental Illness
    “If a person were injected with 500 milligrams of caffeine, within an hour he or she would exhibit symptoms of severe mental illness, among them, hallucinations, paranoia, panic, mania, and depression. But the same amount of caffeine administered over the course of a day only produces the milder forms of insanity for which we take tranquilizers and antidepressants.” (Caffeine Blues, page 124)
    * Coffee and Constipation
    * Caffeine and Headaches
    * Adrenal Exhaustion
    * Caffeine and Women
    * Ecology: pesticides, rain forest destruction and land use issues
    * The corruption of the health food industry
    * Coffee replacement and giving up coffee

    “Barbara and Frances don’t drink coffee.”
    Lots of women do seem to take better care of their health than men.
    Please don’t shoot the messenger. Sugar used to be my “drug” of choice.
    Now I don’t eat or drink anything with any added sugar — makes my teeth hurt !!
    I’ve never liked the high caffeine produces, and hate even the smell of coffee.
    I won’t even go into a place like Starbucks, the coffee stench is so strong.

    Still waiting for your prepper book, hope you can come up with a good title for it.

    There’s lots of good info out there on caffeine toxicity, but the above is one of my most favorites. We seem to be a nation of drug addicts — myself included of course.

    I just wanted to share the information with y’all.

    update …

    You’re a good man OFD !!

    Almost forgot the best part … check out these spider webs …
    Spiders On Drugs

    The caffeine web (spiders consuming flies laced with various drugs) seems about the most useless and pathetic of them all !!

    I know lots of people with excruciating migraines. Most won’t even try giving up the caffeine. The few who do usually end up with a lot fewer, or none at all.

  32. OFD says:

    “Hearing loss sucks.”

    Depends. Sometimes it’s better not to hear stuff.

    But OTOH, OFD is getting his new hearing aids July 1, thanks to the VA, and over forty years since working various firearms and explosives for Uncle. And not counting all the damn rock concerts and the data centers. They also told me about an app for the iPhone called “ReSound” which I have put on it and will try out.

    Glad I don’t drink coffee. Wife does and takes it black; thus, mood swings, depression, etc. Whereas I just stay my usual lunatic self on an even keel.

  33. Rick H says:

    In the middle of a heat wave here on the Olympic Peninsula – currently 86F. Should get up to 90F tomorrow.

    But there is a small breeze going on outside, so there’s that.

  34. OFD says:

    We just saw that Kalifornia was up to 116. At that point I’d have to shoot myself. The village here is in the 70s today with a slight breeze off the bay. Heavy rain expected tomorrow, so wife is getting a bunch of plants in; I’m running the grill: garlic-and-lemon chicken breasts with a garlic-lemon-parsley vinaigrette. Couscous on the side with cranberry sauce.

    We also consulted on the new fencing for the middle of what used to be the driveway (important to get these things clear with spouse (so they can change their minds a few more times later)). And now an L-shaped deck around the flower beds, overlooking the bay and the semi-distance Adirondacks and up in there where Dannemora is, the prison town. Beyond that to the southwest are the former environs of one John Brown and family. And to our south in Bethel and Sharon the previous abode of one Joseph Smith, with a colony of Mormon cultists having moved in again and beavering away at setting up another community there.

    And throughout this area, the happy hunting grounds of the Western Abenaki and previous indigneous peeps, the martyrdoms of French Jesuit priests, the French and Indian War, our War of Independence and the War of 1812.

    Now stop any couple of dozen peeps on the current streets both sides of the lake and ask them about any of this.

  35. DadCooks says:

    Well here in SE WA State at 1701 PDT it is 104.1°F, and still trending upward, with 71.8% humidity and wind 1mph from the West. Barometer is falling, sky is clear.

  36. H. Combs says:

    Got back from a week at the gulf and found”someone” had left one of the wife’s many cats locked in the garage. So the garage now stinks like a huge litter box. I spent a good bit of the day trying to find all the little cracks and crevices where the ferocious feline left her deposits. Not how I hoped to spend the Saturday before going back to work. Great vacation but I came back to discover my new manager has fired the only other person on our team. We had an IT Security team of 4 at Christmas, then one retired, another just walked out in April, and now I am it. I have just 2 years to retirement so I’m not excited to be the only security guy in a 10,000 person, international company. Monday will be very interesting.

  37. lynn says:

    We have yet to hit 90 F yet here in the Land of Sugar in 2016. But we have hit 90% humidity and more many times. And yes, we got another half inch of rain today.

  38. OFD says:

    “We had an IT Security team of 4…”

    This is what is known as a SOC, amirite? I was interviewed for one of them gigs at IBM a couple of years ago but apparently too old for them or something. After previously doing IT security admin there along with two or three other jobs for the price of one. Good luck being the Only Guy. They’ll probably still expect you to carry the full weight of the original four and like it.

  39. OFD says:

    More cheery nooz for a Saturday night:

    They’re wrong, however, about the rise to power of our neocon scum; they rolled in with Ronnie Raygunz, not Larry Klinton. And both Bush crime families boosted them every chance they got, political descendants of Lev Bronstein, aka Trotsky. And basically agents of the Israeli Likud and war hawks there.

    Our criminal psychopath leaders are gonna get us all killed. Trumpster just might put a stop to this chit and quit poking the Russian bear and the Iranian whatever in the eyes. And the words I wanna hear him say repeatedly and continuously after he takes the oath of office are “You’re FIRED!”

  40. OFD says:

    More from the Late Night Cheery Nooz Department:

    Printing more fiat currency won’t fix this problem, nor will declaring Default. We’re screwed.

  41. nick says:

    @lynn, we got 1.2 inches here since midnight. Most was overnight, but we had several good steady rains throughout the day, mixed with blue skies and sun.

    bedtime now, kids had me up early…..


  42. Miles_Teg says:

    “Dannemora is, the prison town. ”

    Home to the Clinton correctional facility. Wouldn’t it be ironic if a couple of people by that alias moved in… 🙂

  43. Miles_Teg says:

    H. Coombs wrote:

    “We had an IT Security team of 4 at Christmas, then one retired, another just walked out in April, and now I am it.”

    I used to work in IT security, but left because I hated not doing any programming. Not sure how well I was regarded: The manager persuaded one of his underlings to apply for a mid-level managerial position by suggesting that otherwise they’d have to invite me to take the job.

    On the other hand, a few years later, a senior contractor there said that the guy running IT security was hopeless and that I should apply for his position.


  44. ech says:

    His name is Stephen Cherniske, a scientist who spent 10 years of his life researching the effects of caffeine on the body and compiling them in a shocking document, “Caffeine Blues.”

    His master’s degree, no PhD, appears to be from a mail order university that was shut down by court order in 2001. One of his companies signed a consent decree with the FTC for making unsubstantiated claims. IMHO, I would take any of his claims with a huge grain of salt. (Another substance that has been maligned unfairly.)

  45. MrAtoz says:

    You might want to check out …

    Is there any kind of scientific study behind this. It seems more like a raw food diet tie in than anything.

    I don’t understand why your teeth would hurt from eating an apple pie. Is it like drinking an ice cold beverage and let it sit in your mouth on your teeth?

  46. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    It’s all woo-woo stuff.

  47. SteveF says:

    It’s about as scientifically supported as Anthropogenic Global Warming.

    (Real science, that is, not the religion touted as climate science these days.)

  48. OFD says:


  49. dkreck says:

    Re-education for Steve F. (probably doesn’t believe in females with dicks either)

  50. lynn says:

    It’s about as scientifically supported as Anthropogenic Global Warming.

    Real science, that is, not the religion touted as climate science these days.)

    Denier! Put him in the ovens!

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