Sun. Aug. 29, 2021 – last day of my show…

Hot and humid with rain, just like yesterday. No direct evidence of the storm yet.

Today I’m headed to a breakfast get together, and then the closing day of the meeting/show/swapmeet.

Yesterday was the second day of our regional association meeting with sellers mart (kinda swapmeet). We ended up with a bunch of no shows on pre-purchased seller tables. I don’t know what the real number is yet, but it feels like about 1/3 to 1/2 were empty. I’m guessing wuflu delta worries, or actual sickness kept them home. People were going table to table, sales were made. Everyone was happy to be back together, but there was an undercurrent. These are mostly small business owners, mostly rural, older, and white. A lot of them have been doing this show for a long time and usually treat it as a social opportunity to get together with friends they haven’t seen in a while.

I spent most of the day talking with people either at my table or theirs.

I joined about 5 conversations about the coming troubles- either world war, civil war, or economic collapse. One guy even said “gotta get in as much normal as we can before it all falls apart.” I didn’t start any of them, but did join and spoke honestly. People aren’t sure what’s coming, but they are sure it is coming and that it will be bad. No one was talking politics, Biddn, or the losses in Afghanistan. I’m not sure they could have without tears. It’s that kind of crowd.

I’ll see if I’m over reacting today, but it felt a bit like a last hoorah, or a last good bye. A lot of people were leaving early so I’m not expecting a busy day. I’ll look around with an eye towards the mood, but it felt a bit melancholy.

My kids were great all day. It was long, 7am to 6:30pm and they were troopers. The youngest was her vibrant and precocious self, charming most of the other sellers. She got me to loan her $45 to buy stuff for herself. Oldest spent the morning building a metal model from Metal Earth, then took a nap under the table. The other folks were amazed at her focus and dexterity with tweezers. (the models are super cool, and the results are impressive.)

I sold a bunch of stuff, and hope to sell some more today. I think I can find a few fresh items to put out this morning. I have so much stuff I forgot about some of it that would have been appropriate for this venue. I’ll miss a bunch of early leavers, but all I need is one buyer for each thing after all.

A quick scan of the news shows me escalating street violence, international destabilization continuing apace, local natural disasters, and all the regular stuff, turned up a few notches.

In the words of Yoda, “save you what can”. And keep stacking.

nick

48 Comments and discussion on "Sun. Aug. 29, 2021 – last day of my show…"

  1. Nick Flandrey says:

    74F and 96%RH at 6am.

    Feeling very stiff and ‘hung over’ this morning. That is partly dehydration I’m sure.

    n

  2. SteveF says:

    That being the case, “hair of the dog” means going back out to the sales floor.

  3. Greg Norton says:

    Give me a friggin’ break. Progs are still working the “That Could Be My (Grand) Daughter” meme they perfected with the Kavanaugh hearings.

    Though, it makes me wonder what The Real Life Tony Stark (TM)’s defense will look like when the establishment tires of his antics and throws him to the SEC wolves.

    https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/28/tech/elizabeth-holmes-theranos-trial-mental-health/index.html

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  4. Alan says:

    https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/28/tech/elizabeth-holmes-theranos-trial-mental-health/index.html

    I just don’t see the jury buying this line of BS. I wonder what kind of a deal they offered Balwani to take a plea and flip on her. But whatever it was, it wasn’t enough. Certain strategy in play to try her first.

  5. drwilliams says:

    Theranos valuation was $9 billion before it was exposed.

    The key role of Tyler Shultz was written up in Wired Magazine in a long article, but this makes a short intro:

    https://thebrownandwhite.com/2019/10/06/tyler-shultz-theranos-whistleblower/

    and

    https://www.wired.com/story/the-inventor-theranos-and-multiplatform-schadenfreude/

  6. drwilliams says:

    I lost a post earlier, jumped the track back to Sat, and posted this:

    much abbreviated:

    CBS Sunday Morning today

    visit the website and watch

    50 year anniv of “Deja Vu”

    Afghan interpreter resettles in small town (scroll down, it’s in News)

    ADDED:

    Also barely mentioned was the death of Don Everly August 21. Scott Johnson wrote an excellent article here:

    https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2021/08/sunday-morning-coming-down-117.php

  7. Greg Norton says:

    The key role of Tyler Shultz was written up in Wired Magazine in a long article, but this makes a short intro:

    George Schultz’ grandson. Jeesh, who *didn’t* want to have sex with Elizabeth Holmes.

    Putting Holmes on trial first probably indicates that they think they can flip her to go after even bigger names.

    Or they’re sending a message to the sugar daddies and babies that scams involving billions won’t be tolerated. Stick to 10s or 100s of millions.

  8. drwilliams says:

    @Alan

    If Shultz account is correct, they didn’t have to flip Balwani. Every scientist working at Theranos knew it was a fraud, and by standard practice for start-ups in Silicon Valley, every one was a millionaire in stock. The SEC has enough evidence to get guilty pleas from dozens of top staff and they have every bit of incriminating evidence they need. Be surprized if there aren’t a dozen hard drives that were stashed by execs “just in case”.

  9. drwilliams says:

    @Greg Norton

    Tyler Shultz was the only one who knew his ethical obligation. Unfortunately, he didn’t get good advice on how to do it, and it cost his parents dearly. It also tore apart the relationship with his grandfather–not invited to his 95th birthday, but Holmes was. It’s amazing that he had the right stuff to get through.

    ADDED: You’ve never met the hottie that should push all your buttons but you know, instinctively, that’s she’s really the Mother of Toads?

  10. Greg Norton says:

    ADDED: You’ve never met the hottie that should push all your buttons but you know, instinctively, that’s she’s really the Mother of Toads?

    No, but having worked in tech for the last 30 years, I have seen more than a few things.

    At the last job, the desire among management to have sex with the skinny blonde CS washout from [BIG Texas school name] drove a lot of poor decision making. I didn’t figure it out for a while, but one day, returning late from lunch, I caught her on her smoke break and everything suddenly made sense.

    One manager had such a high T therapy dosage in his system at any given point that his hands shook constantly.

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  11. drwilliams says:

    @Greg Norton

    I saw one take over a marketing position from someone who did an ironclad state of the market report that was presented to customers every year. Extending it the first year passed muster. The second year she crashed and burned on the tour, and all the “on the way to the gym/ coming back from the gym” outfits and “please stand so close to me” didn’t do any good. She took a demotion to another operating unit but the blinders were off and she was totally out within a year.

     

  12. ech says:

     Jeesh, who *didn’t* want to have sex with Elizabeth Holmes.

    Um. You don’t put it in crazy.

     

  13. SteveF says:

    Put me down in the column of those who didn’t want to have sex with Holmes.

    In fact, nasty cynic that I am, pretty much my first thought when the young, slim, blonde, somewhat attractive, female CEO of a tech startup was hailed as the up-and-coming wunderkind genius was that she wouldn’t have gotten off the ground and certainly wouldn’t have gotten any attention if not for the previously-listed characteristics. Note that none of those characteristics has anything to do with running a billion-dollar corporation.

    My second thought, nasty cynic that I am, was to wonder what scam was being run: was she an earnest believer being used as a cat’s paw by money men? Was she running the scam?

    It wasn’t until later that I saw photos of her showing crazy eyes. Yah, keep it in your pants and don’t write any checks.

    (This would be a good point to once again point out that nasty cynics have a better record of predicting events than do optimists or true believers.)

  14. drwilliams says:

    @SteveF

    My second thought, nasty cynic that I am, was to wonder what scam was being run: was she an earnest believer being used as a cat’s paw by money men? Was she running the scam?

    There is a lot more to the story than has come out, and I’m looking forward to popcorn time.

    Holmes dropped out of Stanford’s engineering school. Tyler Shultz (who graduated from Stanford) first met her at his grandfather’s house, before that luminary joined the Theranos board.  George Shultz had a long association with Standford’s Hoover Institution.

    After Tyler went to the WSJ, he went to his grandfather’s to discuss his accusations. He was met there by Theranos attorney’s, and refused to sign their papers. George Shultz left the Theranos board and joined some other group of Thernos advisors.

    It’s very murky exactly what kind of influence on George Shultz was powerful enough to chose Theranos over family. The thread obviously runs through Stanford in some way. Seems like there are a lot of undisclosed players.

  15. drwilliams says:

    I tried to find Balwani’s financial interest in Theranos, and read his wiki article, which includes:

    Within Theranos, Balwani was known for using technical terms he seemingly did not understand in what others believed were attempts to appear more knowledgeable.[12] Balwani at one point claimed: “This invention [the Edison blood testing device] is going to be way up there, um, with– with the discovery of antibiotics.”[14] He once misheard “end effector” (the claw or other device at the end of an automated robot’s arm) as “endofactor” (a nonsense word) and repeated the error throughout a meeting, furthermore not noticing when “Endofactor” was subsequently used as a prank in a PowerPoint presentation.[12]

    His career path includes Lotus, Microsoft, and Commerce One, so strangely enough, I am not surprised.

    It also includes a link to this:

    Balwani’s lawyer says that his client couldn’t have committed a crime because he never made any money. “In over 28 years of practicing law, as both a federal prosecutor and a defense attorney, I have never seen a case like this one, where the government brings a criminal prosecution against a defendant who obtained no financial benefit and lost millions of dollars of his own money,” attorney Jeffrey Coopersmith told me.

    https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2018/06/theranos-former-president-has-a-jaw-dropping-explanation-for-why-hes-innocent

    Which does not explicitly answer the stock question, but does indicate that he will mount an interesting defense.

  16. MrAtoz says:

    What Mr. SteveF is really thinking:

    Mmm, Holmes, mmm. 😉

  17. Lynn says:

    “Brazilian President Tells Supporters “Buy A Gun, Damn It””
    https://www.zerohedge.com/political/brazilian-president-tells-supports-buy-gun-damn-it-amid-impending-chaos

    “Why on Earth would Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro tell supporters on Friday that “everyone should buy a rifle”? Is the unstable South American emerging economy, suffering from the virus pandemic, rapid food inflation, and out-of-control poverty about to stumble into further socio-economic chaos?

    “Everybody has to buy a rifle, damn it! The armed people will never be enslaved. I know it costs a lot. An idiot says: ‘Ah, what you have to buy is beans,’ if you don’t want to, don’t buy the rifle, but do not come to disturb whoever wants to buy it,” Bolsonaro told reporters.”

    Can’t get any plainer than that.

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  18. Nick Flandrey says:

    Home again home again jiggity jig!

    Well, that’s this year’s show done. I need to think thru my sales, do some totals and see where I ended up. In the plus side was the socializing and interaction. Add moving out some stuff including one really bulky item. Add getting money back out of mistake purchase, although I lost money on the one and didn’t sell the other big one.

    In the minus, I really hope we all stay healthy. For some the show wasn’t much of a money maker, or they lost money overall.h

    D2 turned the power of the cute to 11 and charmed the group. People were giving her stuff left and right. She got drafted to do the door prize drawing and pulled her own ticket… no one complained. She turned around and flipped the prize to another seller and paid me back half what I loaned her. { Proud Papa! }

    For me, a good weekend.

    n

  19. Nick Flandrey says:

    Hurricane Ida Makes Landfall in Louisiana as a Monster Category 4 Storm – 150+ MPH Winds – (Storm Chaser Live Cam)
    By Cristina Laila

    https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2021/08/hurricane-ida-makes-landfall-louisiana-monster-category-4-storm-150-mph-winds-storm-chaser-live-cam/

    wow, turn off the news for a day….
    n

  20. drwilliams says:

    When the levy fails it’s Trump’s fault.

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  21. Greg Norton says:

    Within Theranos, Balwani was known for using technical terms he seemingly did not understand in what others believed were attempts to appear more knowledgeable

    That sentence describes most of my management in the last 30 years.

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  22. MrAtoz says:

    The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t so bad…if you lived through it.

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  23. Lynn says:

    “Storm surge from Ida could overtop some West Bank levees; officials say they will hold”
    https://www.nola.com/news/hurricane/article_f24d728c-082a-11ec-b016-bfe6e434cefd.html

    Uh oh. I’ve seen this before, it was not pretty then.

    Hat tip to:
    https://www.drudgereport.com/

  24. SteveF says:

    What Mr. SteveF is really thinking:

    Mmm, Holmes, mmm.

    Nah. At her best, made up and then the best photo from the batch chosen for an article, she was sorta attractive. Take into account the suspicion of sleaze and she was less attractive than a generic 20-something truckstop waitress who managed to be friendly even though her feet hurt.

  25. drwilliams says:

    “I would describe the president’s approach to this in recent days in one word: focused. He is laser-focused 24 hours a day…”

    Jake Sullivan, current NSA

    About the best Biden can do is “Gypsy Queen in a haze of vaseline” level focus  for 10-15 minutes at a time, if he has good notes and a teleprompter.

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  26. MrAtoz says:

    LOL Just like when he fell asleep with the Israeli PM – laser focused, on his shoes. And at receiving the dead at Dover – laser focused on his watch “Can we go to the ice cream shop now?”

    plugs will be lucky to last one term.

    tRump/HARRIS 2024! LOL!

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  27. JimB says:

    tRump/HARRIS 2024! LOL!

    /SARC  /SARC  /SARC

    FIFY, because LOL isn’t enough.

    (What I tell you three times…)

  28. JimB says:

    Oh wait, tRump/HARRIS? Maybe not so bad. At least the jokes would write themselves.

  29. Greg Norton says:

    RIP Crossroads.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-exxmO7f5S8

    @Nick – FYI if you’re still headed to Eisney later this year. We regularly fed kids at Chevy’s, Uno, and Fuddruckers when we went to conferences at The Grand Cypress.

    Uno was the 2nd busiest in the chain IIRC. We called that location when we were in the area in March to see what the wait time was, and even on a Monday night, it was two hours.

  30. Ray Thompson says:

    HARRIS/tRump 2024! YIKES!

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  31. Nick Flandrey says:

    Wow, citizen journalism at its best. I’ve been watching that guy’s live stream since I linked it, and in production and content he’s miles better than the big boys.

    The only annoyance, and it’s small and understandable, is he has his system configured to do pop ups and shout outs when he gets tips or new supporters. He said earlier it didn’t used to happen very often… now its a constant stream.

    Also the funding model for livestreamers means he’s acknowledging his super chat, especially with shoutouts when people donate to him. I watch other streamers and that is just the way it works.

    Apparently Drudge linked him from the main page too. His channel is blowing up!

    n

  32. MrAtoz says:

    Another day and plugs refuses to talk about Afghanistan:

    President Biden tells journo, ‘I’m not supposed to take questions, but go ahead’ and then refuses to answer her question

    It’s not going away plugsy. Wait until the ads start popping up with plugs’ back to the camera. McSpongeBrain probably doesn’t even remember what happened.

  33. Greg Norton says:

    Wow, citizen journalism at its best. I’ve been watching that guy’s live stream since I linked it, and in production and content he’s miles better than the big boys.

    The only annoyance, and it’s small and understandable, is he has his system configured to do pop ups and shout outs when he gets tips or new supporters. He said earlier it didn’t used to happen very often… now its a constant stream.

    Adam the Woo has been around a long time. He started as urbex but being banned from a few theme parks changed his direction to more pop culture and legal Disney adventures.

    I believe he is still banned from Universal Orlando.

    Crossroads has a lot of memories for many people in the area, not just tourists. Another abandoned Mouse experiment with that corner of their property.

     

  34. drwilliams says:

    “I have long expressed doubt over the Babbitt shooting, which directly contradicted standards on the use of lethal force by law enforcement. But what was breathtaking about Byrd’s interview was that he confirmed the worst suspicions about the shooting and raised serious questions over the incident reviews by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and, most recently, the Capitol Police.”
    –Jonathan Turley

    https://thehill.com/opinion/judiciary/569827-justified-shooting-or-fair-game-shooter-of-ashlii-babbitt-makes-shocking

    If he can’t comprehend “keep your mouth shut”, he has no business carrying a gun.

    Oh, wait… this is the guy who left his service weapon in the can at the Capitol… he shouldn’t be carrying a gun anyway.

  35. drwilliams says:

    Like to track Psaki to her favorite restaurant and deliver this woman to the door

    https://www.dailywire.com/news/mother-of-slain-u-s-marine-unloads-on-biden-a-feckless-dementia-ridden-piece-of-crap-treasonous

  36. Nick Flandrey says:

    Well my friend in Slidell just lost a tree and his wind is picking up.

    n

  37. Alan says:

    President Biden tells journo, ‘I’m not supposed to take questions, but go ahead’ and then refuses to answer her question

    At least he admits someone else is pulling his puppet strings.

  38. Bob+Sprowl says:

    I want to the names and addresses of those on the Ashli Babbit Board.  I also want the transcript of the proceedings published.

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  39. Alan says:

    Recent post from Barbara’s journal…but not to worry, Uncle Joe said the inflation is just transitory.

    I went to the grocery store this morning. A few things still out of stock but nothing I needed urgently. I was able to get milk, juice, and salad greens. My usual short list of weekly items used to run around twenty to twenty-five dollars has jumped up to forty.

  40. Nick Flandrey says:

    Whew, I’m tired. I AM going to bed early tonight.

    If you are in the path of the bad weather, please be safe. If you are one of us and need help, ask. We’ll do what we can.

    n

  41. lynn says:

    “Electric vehicle fire catastrophe: It is not a matter of if, but when”
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2021/08/28/electric-vehicle-fire-catastrophe-it-is-not-a-matter-of-if-but-when/

    “Joe Biden’s plan to convert 50% of the U.S. vehicle fleet from internal combustion engines to electricity by 2050 to fight climate change ignores a serious danger in doing so. Recent events around the world reveal that fire catastrophes from electric vehicles (EVs) are not only possible, but increasingly likely. The fire risk of the lithium-ion batteries that these EVs rely on for power is well documented, as they have been known to spontaneously combust in the most inopportune times and places.”

    Don’t park an EV inside any structure.

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  42. lynn says:

    “Insanity in Vietnam”
    https://alexberenson.substack.com/p/insanity-in-vietnam

    “Army-enforced lockdowns, spiraling case counts… and a new mass vaccination campaign. Coincidence, no doubt.”

    “Until this summer, Vietnam was a Covid success story.
    Many Americans still think of Vietnam as a poor country of rice farmers. In fact, Vietnam’s economy has surged since 2000 as it picks up manufacturing priced out of China, its historic foe to the north. Fewer than 10 percent of Vietnam’s 100 million people now fall below the global poverty line.”

    “But Vietnam’s success at containing Covid abruptly ended this spring.
    Its coronavirus epidemic began in May and exploded in late June. Since then, cases have risen 25-fold. On Friday, Vietnam reported more than 17,000 cases, its most ever – more than 10 times as many as it had in all of 2020.
    Deaths are soaring too. Over the last week, Vietnam has averaged more deaths per-capita than the United States.”

    Oops.

  43. lynn says:

    “Video shows train slamming into semi-truck hauling wind turbine blade in Luling”
    https://www.ksat.com/news/local/2021/08/30/photos-video-show-train-slamming-into-semi-truck-hauling-wind-turbine-blade-in-luling-2/

    More oops.

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  44. Jenny says:

    -aargh I’m still in moving hell-

    Rapidly exits building on way to pack another box full of ‘precious treasures’

    -please return to your normally scheduled program following this brief alcohol fueled proof of life-

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  45. brad says:

    In fact, nasty cynic that I am, pretty much my first thought when the young, slim, blonde, somewhat attractive, female CEO of a tech startup was hailed as the up-and-coming wunderkind genius was that she wouldn’t have gotten off the ground and certainly wouldn’t have gotten any attention if not for the previously-listed characteristics.

    Cynic. And those characteristics are also why she was able to keep the scam going for so long.

    This is a general problem for competent women. In my doctorate program: they were desperate for women, to show equality (this was a top-ten CS program in the US). I recall specifically a hispanic woman (M) who was clearly…underqualified. SHe blatantly stated that she used her ethnicity and gender to the hilt. Sure enough, she landed a professorship straight after graduation. Yet she couldn’t hold a candle to most other people in the program – it’s a mystery to me, how she passed the courses. So imagine: you work with M, discover she’s not particularly competent, and you wonder: are all the women from that school as bad? This pissed off the genuinely competent women no end.

    That’s Elizabeth Holmes in a nutshell: Now any attractive female CEO will be looked at skeptically. Are they actually any good, or are they running a scam? Is their company going to collapse in a tangle of legal proceedings? She has made it harder, not easier, for women in high positions to be treated as equals to their male colleagues.

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  46. Nick Flandrey says:

    Yes. and lest anyone think otherwise, when it happens with males it casts the same suspicion. The triggering characteristics might be different, ie. not physical attractiveness, but the result is the same for a while anyway.

    n

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