Thursday, September 28, 2006


I had a close call with a great night last night. But it was not to be. Cracker, my favorite musical artist who is not Tom Waits, was to perform for free at Louisville's Waterfront Park. Cracker+free+pleasantly cool evening weather=wowness. However, there was a meteorological monkeywrench as a cold front moved in. During a preceding act, Soul Inc., you could see darkness in the west and some spectacular lightning flashes. It kept coming and coming. I'd known from the outset--indeed, I'd known days beforehand--that this was possible or even likely. And now it was coming to a stormy rock & roll head.

They sped things up in an attempt to get Cracker on and rockin' before things got bad. By about 8:30, I'd moved down to the foot of the stage, and David Lowery and Johnny Hickman were not more than six feet from me, plugging in cords and arranging stands. That alone significantly raised the coolness factor of the evening.

Lightning, lightning.

Some dude from WFPK (sponsor of the concert series) came out and said that they were shutting things down for fifteen or twenty minutes, because they didn't want Cracker standing on the metal stage, and all of us in the audience standing around the equipment, with all the lightning. Also, it looked like it would rain soon. Everyone held out hope that it would blow over or be mercifully brief.

For the next half-hour, I huddled and shivered beneath Interstate 64 like some disgraced junkie cosmonaut. A very cold wind blew, and the rain started to fall. Finally, another dude came over to the amassed huddlers and announced that they were calling it off. I wasn't sure this guy was official, since he didn't look official (long hair, shorts, and a windbreaker, and he was just sort of hanging out and talking.) The cancellation was confirmed when I looked around the corner and saw that the canopy over the stage was being taken down, and the tour buses and equipment trucks were leaving.

I got to hear some decent music from Soul, Inc., but it sure wasn't what I was there for. I also ate a free cupcake, which was given to me in celebration of the 20th anniversary of something Waterfront Park related. I also got a free frisbee and a WFPK magnet. Also important to note is that, despite the rain, I didn't get very wet.

Disappointed, I returned home. Glad-hearted, I got to spend time in my warm little house with Kim and Erin. Jill was in bed already.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Here's another reason why The Straight Dope is one of my favorite web sites:

This is a pair of interesting articles on actor George Reeves, whose suicide (murder?) is central to the new movie Hollywoodland. The second article was particularly interesting to me, in both a CSI-whodunnit kind of way, and because of the author's commentary on how George Reeves as a person was treated in the film.

I have plenty to blog about otherwise (I was sick this weekend, I worked at the coin show, my kids are so gosh-darned cute, my wife is absolutely stellar, it sure did rain a lot, what the heck am I gonna do for artist trading cards?, anecdotes from my youth, etc.

But, shoot, I better get back to work.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

I have multiple old paintings that seem too nice to simply throw away, yet with which I'm not particularly satisfied. Typically, they have some nice features, but other elements which cause me to shake my head. Maybe I can find someone who wants to buy them at a discount ($20-50, no frame). That would free up corner space in our family room.

I think I might try some Artist Trading Cards. If you Google that phrase, you find some interesting stuff. Kim set me onto it.

Happy Autumnal Equinox

On the equinox, I can stand my nine-month-old on her head and she won't fall over.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


I just had to give a new 25-year-old employee some instruction in operating a typewriter. I showed her how to load the paper, how to use the erase key, how to set the margins. She seems to find it pretty hysterical that we are using these machines in this day and age.

I understand completely. But I use my typewriter a hundred times a day.

Note found

This was handwritten on a green Post-It inside a used copy of Rebecca, by Daphne du Maurier, at Half-Price Books on Hurstbourne Lane:

I am going to apply your hall decorating $ to your senior video. I
don't need your $. I want the kids who drive the Lincoln Navigators + have their
hair colored weekly to give me $ for the hall. Those are the ones who frustrate
me. :)

Little found notes can be fun. I like it.

Ahoy to ye, sit with me fer some grog.

Aye, I says to me mates, you may be wishin to know that I'm a-pinin' fer Spanish silver. Sure as me booty is shivered, me calloused hands long to hold a piece o' eight dated 1734. Pillar dollars, they call 'em up north in Floridy and Georgia and the other lands o' King George. I may ha' ta go a-blastin' with my iron billies to wrest a handful from some Frenchie traders or seadog Spaniards. Arrr. Aye, 1734, says I, because that's the year o' my forefathers' arrival in the New World.

Monday, September 18, 2006

My third coin club meeting

I am now a card-carrying-member of the Louisville Coin Club. I was voted in yesterday (no "nays," thankfully) and applauded (scatteredly). All as sort of an afterthought, or more like a sidethought, when I raised my hand after break and asked if I was a member.

I arrived at the meeting a few minutes late, sat in the back row, and witnessed en media res a rancorous exchange between the President, some club officers, and one of my fellow members. As I missed the beginning, I don't know what set off this powderkeg of emotion "Listen, if you want to take a vote and revoke my membership, I'll leave." "No one is asking you to leave." "...Because I think I'm a member as much as anyone else, and I'd like to have my say." "I'm sorry you didn't feel like you were being listened to, but we have some business to conduct..." Something like that.

I'm new enough that I can't pass judgment on other members. Also, if some of them find this blog, they'll probably figure out who I am, decide I'm a total smartass, and make my numismatic life yet more difficult, so all I'll say is that I love them all dearly. Anyway, after a few minutes, things settled down and everyone discussed the upcoming coin show.

That world-coin guy, Mike (I think...?) and I sat in back and swapped coins. I think he took some pity on my beginnerishness and gave me a good trade. Sure, I'll post some pictures eventually, if you insist.

Something else I should take pics of is my New England Asters. Why wouldn't everyone in the world want these things in their yard?

Skip this post if you know what's good for you. Or if you're eating.

I have a million dollar idea—a couple of them! “Oh, God, not again,” you might exclaim morosely. Correctamundo, podner!

I think our digestive systems are unexplored territory for the semi-educational—to—pseudo-educational toy niche over which, or perhaps within which, parents go ape. Well, check this out: Imagine (vividly, I ask you) small, ingestible, non-digestible, non-pointy dinosaurs. These are chemically imbued with an as-yet-undecided-upon substance which changes to bright, exciting colors in stomach acid, and which also provokes regurgitation. Swallow a handful of them, and after ten minutes, you vomit colorful dinosaurs. These Throwuppables will sell cheaply, but in great volume. And I’ll be a wealthy man—“The Man Who Made Vomit Fun!”

A co-worker suggested the name Pyookables (her word, my spelling choice). It has a nicer ring, I think, but sounds less educational. I’ll have to think about it a while.

Another idea: Little expandable dinosaurs in pellet form, like little pills. As they pass through your digestive tract, they release and expand into multicolored, 2-inch-long foam dinosaurs, which are harmlessly passed and immediately enjoyed. Poopables.

Those of you who are re-thinking your friendship with me had best decide where your loyalty lies before I’ve made my first ten million dollars.

Sure to adorn the pegboards at your nearest Zany Brainy retailer.

Oh, and I forgot that my mom might start reading this. Hi, Mom.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Those pictures in the past couple of posts don't have such great quality. I'm not sure what I did to cause that. Hmmm. I'll have to check on that.

I received an emergency notice in the mail stating that the Louisville Coin Club 46th Annual Fall Coin Show has had a change of location. It is now at the Ramada Inn at Zorn Avenue and Interstate 71. Dates remain the same, Sept. 22-23, 10-6:00.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Here's another one in wretched shape. It's impossible to attribute with any surety, but it's probably Constantius II, between AD 337 and 361. The reverse is posted first; if you use your imagination a bit, you can make out the large standing soldier on the right spearing the fallen horseman to the left and below. I knew it to be a CONST- something or other, and some kind fellows on another site used their superior experience to narrow it down more.

The Japanese coin, a 10 sen silver piece, is upside down. I accidentally photographed it that way. It's an easy mistake for American Me to make. So sorry.

I was attracted to that coin the moment I saw it; what a cool dragon. The coin is in good shape, and I like the detail evident. It's Meiji 38 (that is, 1905.)

Same with the NZ shilling. I saw that and thought, "Oooh, neat-o." Nice design, nice shape, must obtain.

Monday, September 11, 2006

I was going to type a freakin' phone book, but since this page took 900 hours to open, I'm almost out of time.

I made chocolate chocolate chip bread this weekend. It was pretty good, I thought--sort of like regular bread, but cocoa-flavored. Then I made a sandwich with it. Peanut butter and strawberry jelly. It tasted better with each bite, better and better, until I passed out from joy. Well, it wasn't that good, but I liked it lots.

I will now drive home, with "Fell in Love With a Girl" by White Stripes running through my head.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Turtle update

Mom called and said there was a lady putting flyers in mailboxes. The flyers were for a turtle she had lost. Mom asked her if she had seen the previous notes someone had passed out regarding a turtle someone had found, to which the lady responded yes; she had that turtle back in her possession. There was a second turtle, though, that was still on the loose. This second turtle's a big 'un, weighing in at about fifteen pounds. Mom asked how the turtles got loose, and the lady said she supposes someone just left the gate open.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

A little artwork to share with you

Someone sent me an email with pictures of this guy's artwork. I had to check around on the Web to make sure it wasn't a hoax:

Willard Wigan, micro-sculptor. My favorite is the "Adam and Eve" carved from the point of a pencil.

I prefer larger canvasses, myself.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

All day sneezing and my lips feel numb.

Yesterday, while weed-whackin', my spinny cutter cord hit a small pile of dead grass from the last time I mowed. A cloud of gray mold spores puffed out, looking like cigarette smoke. I repeated this action numerously, and numerously got the puff of spores. Beautiful and apalling. I wonder if that is why I'm sneezing? I didn't feel bad yesterday, but those spores had all night long to grow into greasy, snotty mushrooms inside my sinus cavities.

Also, while inspecting my tomatoes, I saw a jumping spider carrying a dead cricket by the head. Beautiful and apalling.

This blog is also supposed to be about skepticism, too. I can't afford any more mental energy or typing time for it right now, except to say that this Rupert Sheldrake fellow sounds like he might be onto something. Something narcotic and mind-altering, that is.,,2-2344196,00.html

Scientists angered by telephone telepathy study  By Mark Henderson, Science Editor of The Times
A furious row broke out today at Britain's premier science forum over the decision to allow believers in the paranormal to promote their views without challenge from the mainstream.
The row was triggered by the British Association for the Advancement of Science's decision to showcase highly controversial research purporting to demonstrate telepathy and life after death.
Critics including Lord Winston and Sir Walter Bodmer, both past presidents of the BA, expressed particular alarm that three speakers who think paranormal phenomena are real were allowed to hold a press conference without challenge from sceptics. Some said telepathy has already been found wanting in experiments, and has no place at a scientific meeting.
We went to my parents’ house last night. Mom and Dad showed us a slip of paper that someone had put in their mailbox:

FOUND – Turtle. Walking down Goddard Ave. If yours, call xxx-4321.
I said, “I bet there’s a story there.”
It was dark and foggy when I pulled out of my drive this morning. I paused on the street and looked around to make sure there was no traffic bearing down on me, and I noticed that the across-the-street neighbors have a Halloween decoration in their window, a set of colored lights arranged in a jack-o’-lantern face. That made me crack up laughing for two reasons: First, it made me happy to see Halloween decorations, and second, it’s so stupidly early for them.

Then I thought, “Wait a second. I’ve had pumpkins sitting on my front porch for three weeks now…”
I pulled up the last of my pumpkin vines yesterday, and weed-whacked around the house and garden. The New England Asters are just about in full swing; I am very impressed by them. After an almost two-month spell of no large tomatoes, I am finally getting ripe ones again.

Friday, September 01, 2006

First Day of Autumn

...and it kind of feels like it, too. I fear it may be too late to plant my fall crop of green onions. I wanted to do it four weeks ago, but the time has just been lacking. Maybe I'll try planting a few, but they'll have to mature as the weather turns grim around Halloween. But perhaps I am too pessimistic. Lots of times it's very pleasant into November.

Beets and turnips, though, I can plant. They are fine Autumn crops. Trouble is, I sort of tired of cooking and eating them. I never even got that many in the Spring, but that might have been part of the problem. When you only get a little at a time, it cuts down on the number of recipes you can use them in. I mostly just boiled the roots and greens. I'd love to get enough beets for borscht, and get some good turnips for a stew.

After nearly two months of zero production, my large tomatoes are giving me fruit. I've had plenty of cherry tomatoes, but the big 'uns have been biding their time. I picked two medium-size ripe tomatoes a couple of days ago, and there are a half-dozen fat green ones hanging there, waiting. I might have to pick them and fry them before the weather makes them split.