Friday, February 29, 2008


Hmm. I was a little disappointed in "Lost" last night. It was still pretty good, but I'm a little worried that the whole time travel thing will become too much of a focus for the show. And, for me, time travel is so overdone in scifi that unless it's really done in a novel way, it just aggravates me. Fortunately, the time-jumping element might be a somewhat minor thing, plot-wise. It might be primarily a means of isolating the island, and if that's the case, the mechanics of those means are less important then the effect.
The whole nosebleed/aneurysm/constant thing was a bit of a stretch.
What was the deal with Faraday's note about Desmond being his constant? Doesn't that imply that Faraday loves Desmond? Huh?


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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Woo-hoo! & such. "Lost" is on tonight.
I am deeply engrossed in the novel The Secret History by Donna Tartt. Our Otter Book Club read it a few years ago, but I never got past the first few pages then. At the time, with Erin (and maybe Jill? I can't recall the time frame) new in the family, the very idea of attempting to read a 600-page book left me feeling incredulous. Lately, though, I've been on a bit of a roll. I've read more novels in the past six months that I had in the previous six years. That's not a lot of novels, mind you.
The Secret History is turning out to be very good. I figured it would be; I recall my friends who had read it saying that they really enjoyed it. I'm only about a hundred pages in.
I almost went metal detecting at lunch today, but I talked myself out of bringing the detector to work with me. It's still pretty cold, and I thought it was supposed to rain this afternoon, and I liked the idea of reading my book on lunch break, so I left it.


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Wednesday, February 27, 2008


Last night I dreamed that I was playing with one of Erin's small elastic ponytail holders. I decided to wrap it around my eyebrow, and stretched it across my fingers to do so, but it shot off and lodged itself in my head. It deflected somewhat in my sinus cavity and ended up with its front end poking through the skin on the side of my nose, and its back end still poking out above my eyebrow. There was no blood.
Most of the elastic band was behind my left eye. I showed it to Kim whose attitude was pretty much, "Well, that's what you get for horsing around with elastic bands."
I decided to try to pull it out from the nose end. I pulled it tight, and some of it came out, but my vision started getting weird and I realized that the loop of the band was snagged on my optic nerve.
So I cut the band, so that it was simply a straight piece of elastic, not a circle. I pulled on end free, and kept pulling. Almost all of the band was out, but the end of it was still caught on something. I wrapped the band around my fingers to strengthen my grip, and pulled very hard. I could feel things shifting a little in my sinuses, the way they do when there is change in sinus pressure with congestion, but still the string didn't come out. I decided that it might be dangerous to pull any harder than that.
The I awakened and, with some relief, felt my face.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


So I copped to the fact that they weren't saying the baby's name all through the last episode, and deduced that knowing the name would give something away. I wasn't expecting the baby to be Aaron, though.
I've lately found myself caring less about an encompassing explanation for the nature of the island; I suspect that if someone tries to explain it too thoroughly, it will be unsatisfying. I've mostly stopped theorizing, myself. Now I really just want to see how the characters manage their own desires, conflicts, loyalties as they maneuver their paths through the dangerous ambiguity.
Also, I have a suspicion that this ship is going to 'splode pretty good before all is said and done, and I want to see it.
I suppose the fifth member of the "Oceanic 6" was Aaron. Who is the sixth?
In last season's finale, at the very end, Kate said something like, "I better get home. He'll wonder where I am." I guess now the best guess is that she was referring to Aaron.
In that episode, maybe the person who's coffin Jack saw was Ben's. Ben could have been living under a different name, having escaped the island with the Oceanic 6. Then he fakes his own suicide to avoid the tall creepy guy and his organization (I'm forgetting the names of the companies involved) and finance Sayid.


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Sunday, February 24, 2008

Wind damage; house flattened! Sort of.

This is what one of our January storms did to the play house in our back yard a few weeks ago:

The house rolled end-over-end and broke apart. That was the only damage on our property, although there were shingles from the neighbor's roof in our back yard, and there were trees down in our neighborhood.

I successfully put the play house back together, redrilling some holes where the plastic had been torn, and adding some washers to the screws for added durability. It is now stronger than it was before, and I think it could roll end-over-end and not break apart until it slams into the neighbor's blue garage. Let's hope we can avoid that.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Hmm. Gardening.

Spring is near, and the thoughts of a young man such as myself turn to-- peas and broccoli. And romance, of course. I love Kim! She's sweeter than any snap pea, sharper than a rose thorn, and hotter than a tomato patch on a sunny August afternoon. Please imagine at this point that I have used some clever gardening terms with double meaning; I'll leave that to you.
Some of my Springtime fantasies don't involve double èntendres, and are sincerely centered on plowing furrows with furrowed brow. I think that March might be a planting month for some cool weather crops. I'll have to look into that. Some obsessions are giving way to other obsessions, and although trying to make time to paint, scrape together thirty or so bucks to order a small lot of uncleaned ancient Roman coins, and using a metal detector to clean all the gum wrappers from the neighborhood park will all maintain great currency within my cranium, the imminent arrival of warmer weather is again drawing forth from me a deep desire to plant vegetables. Ah, March. Peas and broccoli.
As it has each year for several years now, my garden fantasies far outstrip my means. My thinking goes along the lines of: "I want to plant a lot of pumpkins. That will be sooo great in the Autumn! They take up a huge amount of room, though, so I'll have to plan carefully. Also, we'll need watermelons because the girls love that; but we need to look for a seedless variety, because the seeds last year really offset some of the joy. I'll start early with beans, peas, maybe some broccoli. Jill loves that broccoli, and so do I. And I've wanted asparagus for years now; it's perennial, and the plants themselves are pretty, and even Kim will eat some. Of course, we must have tomatoes. Hot peppers would be fun, and they always make beautiful plants. I'll have to save room for them. And some herbs are essential--it's likely the dill volunteers will return, so I'll save a little room for them. Basil is a must. Cilantro is a must, and that will probably be back voluntarily, too. Potatoes would be so cool! I've wanted those for years, too."
And so on. I quickly go from hardly having room for my pumpkin desires, to a long and uncertain list that resembles a Paul's Fruit Market inventory.  Oh, and I forgot to mention gourds. And lima beans. Maybe a little zucchini. And the blackberry bushes keep expanding.
My garden space is yet pretty small. I plan to enlarge it significantly. I'd like to double what I have right now.
The girls are bigger and more able to both care for and amuse themselves, which means I might be able to spend more time at it this year. Erin has her own garden spot (which needs a lot of work; by the end of last Summer, it looked like a small rectangular wildlife reserve) and Jill is due for one. So they'll both be helping, in their own ways.
On a distantly related note (potential obsessions, hobbies, and things that one must wait for patiently), David and I want to convince Aaron that he should allow us to set up a brewing operation in his nice basement.
I will email Ed right now to see if he has any of his old equipment. I can't recall if I have asked him that already.


Never miss a thing. eidted for yucky grammar.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Coin Club

The coin club met yesterday, and we had a very nice presentation from Mr. Miller, one of our new members. He focuses on Louisville memorabilia, and he has some very nice items relating to the Southern Exposition that ran in Louisville from 1883 to 1887. It was the second largest exposition in US history up to that point, exceeded only by Philadelphia's Centennial Exposition in 1876.
There were some very nice tokens and medals (as well as photographs and engravings) that we got to view, and it was all pretty interesting.
The Expo took place primarily in an enormous 12-acre building that stood where now lie St. James and Belgravia Courts. Central Park was sort of a promenade/midway.
I've kind of glommed on to the fact that Central Park has been raked over pretty hard by detectorists in the past few decades, by the way.
At our coin club auction, I bid on a reference book for Hard Times Tokens, but I didn't want to go over five dollars. It ended up going for six.


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Thursday, February 14, 2008

Playing in the crusty snow.


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Oh, and I apologize...

...if the picture in the post below looks a little, how show I say it...scatalogical. I think it might be better if I wait until the items are dry before I photograph them next time.


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Rusty relics

Here is the junk I found last Friday. The items in a row at the bottom are square nails or small spikes. The thing to the bottom right of the golf ball is not metal; it just came up when I dug up one of the other things. I think it's a piece of tile.
The thing to the bottom left of the golf ball is very heavy and shows, perhaps, traces of white paint. I think it might be lead. I have no idea what it is.
The golf ball was just lying around.


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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

My normal job ends at 4:30 each day, and last night Kim and I had to work at church at 6:00. I didn't have enough time to go home after work, but if I had gone to church I would have been there too early.
I figured that it was a perfect time to go visit some friends I hadn't seen in a long time, since they live near the church. I called, then went over. We had a very nice, albeit short, visit, in which I finally met their one-and-a-half-year-old daughter. She was very sweet and cute.
Working at church went well. Considering that there were only three children, it was very loud.


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Once again I had to drive to work holding my driver's side door shut with my arm. The door wouldn't latch because of the ice inside it. After I arrived, I couldn't get the door shut enough for the dome light to stay off, so I park with the left side of my car up on a curb, then tucked an old glove between the door frame and the door in such a way that a finger was holding down the little black button that shuts off the light.
Also, one of my wiper blades ripped off when I hit the wiper with my ice scraper, but that should be easy enough to fix when it warms up a little.
On a happy note, the advice I took to put cooking spray all around the door seals allowed me to easily open the door. I'll have to remember that trick. Smart Balance with Omega-3 Fatty Acids worked well.


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Monday, February 11, 2008

detecting, films, and reading

Last Friday I spent about three hours detecting at a place where there used to be houses (according to a 1912 topographical map). The place is now fields and trees.
I found evidence of old use, but nothing worth keeping. There were lots of things buried 3-6 inches deep, and most of them were very rusty spikes and nuts. If I had dug up everything that sounded like a nail, I'd have 200 rusty nails. I shall post a photo of what I did dig up.
That was disappointing, but it was good to be out.
I notices quite a few trees toppled in the area from our recent storms. At A. B. Sawyer Park, there were trees down and one of the baseball dugouts was missing its roof.
Saturday night I stayed up much too late re-watching "The Big Lebowski." I love those Coen Brothers. I love all the little things they pack into their movies that are fun to pick up on with repeated viewings.
I tried to watch "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," but I gave up after about a half hour. I decided that, instead of getting annoyed with lack of story and character depth, I may as well just give up on the movies and read the books.
I'm half way through a Stephen Jay Gould essay on catastrophism vs. steady-state geology. That guy is a joy to read. I aways get a kick out of it when he quotes some ancient scholar, such as Pliny the Elder, and appends his quote with "[translation my own.]"

More regarding the presumed pin I found

My parents saw the pin today and, without any prompting from me, my dad said, "You know who that is? That's Joe E. Brown." My mom agreed. They'd never seen a pin like that before, but they thought it looked like him.
So…I don't consider this to be resolved, but the Joe E. Brown theory has legs.
I just read some more about Joe E. Brown. Another piece of supporting evidence: Brown served as president of PONY League Baseball from 1953-1964, and he traveled around the country trying to get adults involved in starting baseball leagues for children.
Like I said, this pin was found next to a baseball diamond at an orphanage.
That might be the tie-in. I'm not 100% convinced, but I think the Joe E. Brown theory has legs that are strong enough for it to walk around without crutches.
Perhaps the "B" designates a division, team rank, or something similar.
Coincidentally, I was looking at a book of old Louisville photographs and Joe E. Brown's picture was in it. He was described as a frequent guest for the Kentucky Derby.


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This is a test of email-to-blog capability. Due to circumstances (both technical and other), I may be using this feature almost exclusively.


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Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Goddard Avenue: Safe in Union Hands

Brian reported on this a couple of weeks ago, and it was something I’d never been aware of before. He saw it referred to on Wikipedia, I think. Then I was reading about something else book about the history of the Cherokee Triangle area and came across a section of a map reproduction. That gave me another lead, allowing me to find a large, full-color, and very nice map on the internet. Here is a section of it.

Yes, sir, it looks like if I could go back in time 140 years and stand on the site that would later be the home of my parents’ front porch, I could throw a rock and hit a Union cannon. Or, at the least, chip a golf ball into a rifle pit.

the location of Fort Hill

Smiling Guy and Two Rad Rides

This might be my favorite find so far:It’s pretty small—about ¾ inch tall. The back side merely has the concave impression of the front, and a divot in the metal that perhaps was where a pin or clip was soldered on. I suspect this was a lapel pin or small award badge of some sort.

I found it yesterday at lunch on the grounds of an orphanage/children’s shelter that was started in the 1920s.

Doesn’t he look like he wants to sell you something?

And here are two swell vehicles that I found when I was at a park with my brother last week: