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Showing posts from October, 2009

Look What's On Sale At Wal-Mart - Just In Time For Halloween I had no idea Wal-Mart was in the casket business. I wonder what shipping would be on one of these and if you have to ship overnight? Personally I think a simple homemade pine casket would be perfectly acceptable for my sorry carcass.

Breakfast With The Kids

Brendan, Mackenzie and I having breakfast at Waffle House. Brendan really likes this place from his stay in Clarksville, Tennessee. They only have a minimum number of choices but all have lots of food. With the All-Star platter it took 3 plates for all my food. And good, too.

Brendan and Three Birds Tavern

Brendan is 1 for 1 with job interviews. He answered an ad for cook at Three Birds Tavern, a rather upscale pub that specializes in an English feel amd menu. Having lived in Britain for a while he was aware of Bangers & Mash*, and Stella Artois**. Besides some convoy work and guard duty, Brendan also cooked while in the Army. He must have gotten his skills from his old man, who just happened to have done some cuisine work while a Counselor and Supervisor at the Mary Davis Home. The only difference...I'll bet Brendan knows what he is doing.

Side patio and deck of the Three Birds Tavern.

Brendan calculating the number of days till his return to England. * Bangers and mash is a meal of sausage and mashed potatoes ** Stella Artois is a popular British ale

A Saturday Walk On The Beach

It was a nice Saturday walk on the beach. Seems you see something different all the time (manatee, jellyfish, dolphins, kamikaze birds and pelicans, and all manor of people).
Today we came across some ocean clams. The weather has changed around here. Gone is the searing all day heat, replaced by lower to mid 80's, and cool evenings.

The surf was really pounding today. The water was cooler than a couple weeks ago. Looking south from Sunset Beach.

Solitary sunbathers.

A fisherman hoping to catch something.

A molting gecko. Looks bigger than the one that snuck into the apartment and went into my bedroom.

Biking With My BFE Buddies To Wauchula

Through the years when working for the 9th Circuit, we had many seminars, workshops and training sessions with people who taught stress management techniques. It went something like this: close your eyes and picture yourself on a quiet beach somewhere sipping a pinacolada with no worries or responsibilities. And you get the picture.

Today, Sunday, I decided to close my eyes, hop on the cycle and travel to Wauchula to Charlotte's Web biker bar with my friends from BFE. From left to right, we have Neighbor Tim and Carrie on his blue Harley. Dapper leather ivy league Harley cap, long sleeve t-shirt adorns Tim while Carrie has tight jeans, a low cut button down shirt exposing a cavernous cleavage...hey, it's my stress reduction so I can clothe people the way I want! Next is Ole astride his sharp red Kawi wearing his cool dew rag with the tail that flips up then down. He's got on his leather vest with the sewed-on patriotic symbols and cool saying. Great vest. I need one. Next w…

Tombstone - Part IV Halloween Or Valentine's Day - You Decide

FROM BBC - 2004

'Lewd Rubbing' Shuts Paris Statue

Officials were concerned about damage to the effigy's groin area
Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris has fenced off a famous tomb to prevent lewd acts being performed on a statue.
The effigy of 19th Century journalist known as Victor Noir has long been popular with women visitors.

This is partly due to his reputation as a romantic figure, and partly because of the effigy's design.

Officials concerned about damage to the icon's groin area have erected a fence around the grave, and a sign prohibiting indecent rubbing.

Noir - whose real name was Yvan Salman - was killed by Pierre Bonaparte, a great-nephew of the Emperor Napoleon, after bearing him a challenge to a duel.

According to the story, he was due to get married the day after he was killed.

The statue shows Noir in a frock coat and trousers lying flat on his back, with a distinct enlargement in the groin.

The effigy has been held as an aid to love or fertility.

It is said that…

Interesting Tombstones III

Our Long Disgraceful Season Is Over

I have been a Mets fan since I was a kid. There are a couple of factors that I have expressed that made me a fan of this schizophrenic organization. One was an anti-Cub bias, another was a
fan of a player who became a Met. I'm not even sure at this point. We have been ass-ugly through the years (as opposed to Cubs who have simply been mediocre). We have at certain points been amazingly good, too. I have enjoyed 4 World Series ('69, '73, '86, and '00), but for the most part we have endured last place or close to last place finishes. The past 3 years have just about broke my spirit. Ahead by 7 games in September and losing out in '07 (worst choke in baseball history).

"No team holding a seven game lead with only 17 games to play ever failed to win their division. The Mets chose to change that by firmly grasping their collective throats and squeezing. They would go on a tear and proceed to lose 12 of those last 17 games."


Interesting Tombstones, Part II

East Dalhousie Cemetery, Nova Scotia: Here lies Ezekial Aikle, Age 102 , The Good Die Young.

Ruidoso, New Mexico, cemetery: Here lies Johnny Yeast, Pardon me For not rising.

Margaret Daniels grave at Hollywood Cemetery Richmond, Virginia: She always said her feet were killing her but nobody believed her.

Grave of Ellen Shannon in Girard, Pennsylvania: Who was fatally burned March 21, 1870 by the explosion of a lamp filled with "R.E. Danforth's Non-Explosive Burning Fluid."

In a Thurmont, Maryland, cemetery: Here lies an Atheist , All dressed up And no place to go

Larne, Ireland - On a hanged sheep stealer: Here lies the body of Thomas Kemp. Who lived by wool and died by hemp.

On a coroner who hung himself: He lived And died By suicide

On a waiter: Here lies the body of Detlof Swenson. Waiter. God finally caught his eye. April 10, 1902

On a watchmaker: Here lies in horizontal position the outside case of Dear George Routleight, watchmaker, whose abilities in that line were an hon…

Paranormal Activity

I won't do a review of this haunted house flick, you can go to Rotten Tomatoes and get 5 or 6 pages of reviews from national critics. Five of us went Saturday and all of us were scared, creeped out and had to consume beer afterward to settle our nerves.

Made for $11,000 - $15,000 it has already made 33 million in limited release. It would also be advised to sleep with one eye open.....or maybe with both of them closed real tight.

Endless Inanity...Florida Style

1. Cool quote: "Drinking when we are not thirsty and making love all year round, madam; that is all there is to distinguish us from other animals." Pierre Augustin Caron de Beaumarchasls

2. Getting cooler around here. Highs are still anywhere between 89-91 degrees everyday but evenings and early mornings are very pleasant.

3. Fantasy Football Update: One team is doing great at 2nd place and the other is climbing out of the cellar and is now in 8th place.

4. Been having a "Sons of Anarchy" marathon around here. Doesn't do much for the image of bikers or motorcycle clubs, but good fun fiction anyway.

5. Saw a trailer for "Paranormal Activity" and it received a 93% Rotten Tomatoes score. Ebert gave it 3 1/2 stars. Made for only $11,000 it could make millions for the producer/director and the only 3 people in it. Oh, and it was the producer's house they filmed it in, too. Looks scary. They'll probably keep it in select theaters till Halloween.

6. Been …

Giving Fleas A Bad Name

Last weekend I went to a flea market here that is very big and very global. Everything was for sale and at one time I thought the only things I didn't see were jock straps and bras. But before the journey ended, even those things could be had at one of the tables. New stuff, used stuff, cars, scooters, food, purses, and more purses. DVD's, African artwork, rugs, blankets, bangles, baubles, beads, candles, incense, you name it. If it could be moved, transported or hauled, it was for sale. I almost bought a billfold for $10.00 but resisted. What I couldn't resist was the Apple Cinnamon bread. And nationalities! Every language, every ethnicity, every age, every kind of person. Just people watching was worth the $1.00 to get in.

These are just two of the giant halls and walkways at the flea market. Hundreds of people, hundreds of vendors. Scores of various languages and ethnicities.

My one disappointment was in not making a movie of this booth. The wings on these guys moved ba…


Upstairs area and hallway. You can see Fred's bed from here.

Downstairs area where they spent most of their time. The door at the upper right goes outside. This area also contained bathroom and workshop. In 1926 the mailman found him on the upper landing at the door slumped dead. He had arranged with the postman to go to the house if the flag was up on mailbox. This was a signal that there was something wrong. They couldn't figure out how he died since there were no marks on his body. It turns out he put a gun down his thoat into his body so there wouldn't be a bloody mess. Apparently he had a hernia from lifting buckets of cement to the rook of his house (better than shingles) and the pain had finally gotten to him.
Also noteworthy is his outside stable, and place where he kept his tools and such. He decided that in case of a a fire the Kewanee Fire department wouldn't get there quick enough so he designed a structure that had water on top, so it was a kind of homema…


Outside view of the solarium.
Another view of Solarium
Another view.
He designed exterior doors so he could open them by stepping on rock panel on ground. Both doors would open and close by themselves. This is the intricate mechanical works for the main entrance.
Beautiful inlaid mahogany floors.
A bicycle he modified so he could take his wife to church in Neponset.


A picture of fountain in solariam. On each corner of this mantel resides the four basic universal human emotions.
This is a chain made from a stick that Fred carved. Click on the picture to get a closer look. Who has that kind of patience these days? There are also shells and knick-knacks he collected throughout his life.
These are clear block Fred had placed into the floor in front of the fireplace. This ensured that he could tell if the fireplace needed wood if he was downstairs in his workshop. He also had a firm rule that no more than 3 logs ever at one time burning.

Glass panels inside his and her bedrooms denoting whose bedroom it belonged to.

Trip To Parrish

It was a trip I had been avoiding for weeks. I don't know why. Maybe it was the distance, the fear of finding my way back. Whatever the reason I hopped on my bike this morning (Sunday 11th) and took I-275 out of town across the Skyway bridge and across the Bay to Parrish. I had a cigar and a couple bucks for a beer I had planned to have at the local Parrish bar. The bridge and ride was awesome as it was truly the first open road since I arrived in the Sweatbox. There were gobs of bikes, in fact as I eased onto the interstate a group of maybe 20 bikes had passed me by a quarter of a mile. It is a toll road and they had a Skypass so they zoomed on through the toll gate while I fumbled for my dollar. As I got going again I wasn't in a hurry so they were quite a bit ahead of me as I am trying to see the water, the bridge and still stay on concrete. Wonderful ride. I'm going about 75 mph and now I'm across and heading on I-275 when I see a "Y": South to Bradenton …