Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Less is more

I used to blog a lot more.  I've been diverted for a while.  I found by tracking this that people would come here look at a photo for a few seconds then leave.  Sometimes taking a photo with them without permission but that's another story.  It was my photos that brought people here, and there was nothing wrong with that as long as they didn't take them for their own use.

I figured out that many people, or even most people don't take the time to read anything that is very long when browsing.  I think that's why facebook works for them.  They are just fed with content from various sources.  Same with news, and everything.

I used to think older employees would be problematic.  They would complain more and would have more physical issues.  But now I prefer them.  It seems the younger employees complain more are absent from work more and are less reliable.  They are on their phones more than on task and bla bla bla.  I'm not sure who makes better employees but I do have my preference.

And the there's the really old folks.  I've been spending a lot of time at a senior home.  Lots of great people.  No doubt products of their generation.

So maybe I think I should post a little more here if only to get back into writing.  It doesn't matter if anyone reads.  It never did. 

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Ice cream

I pretty much cut ice cream out of my life.  The only time I have it is if someone else has it.  I just don't buy it.  It isn't that I don't like it, I do.. So I can't explain it.  I just don't buy it.  Probably because I'm too cheap.  When I'm at the store and I see it, I think, I don't need to spend like $4. or whatever it costs on that.. I can get by without it.  But if you have some around and you offer it to me I will have a little.  Just a small serving.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Dog Person

I've never been a dog person, mostly because I'm allergic, but there are a few dogs I've liked, one was a Boston Terrier.  I had a dream about a Boston Terrier last night.  It came to see me and demanded to cuddle with me. It kept pushing up against me. I couldn't get away from it so I petted it.  Then it started purring like a cat.  I'm allergic to cats too..

Monday, March 13, 2017

Hippies in Golden Gate Park

Man.. They say you gain wisdom with age,. I don't know how true that is.  Maybe you just get out of touch to what is really going on, like a hang-up of being stuck in the past.  There's nothing worse than having a hang-up right man? it's so uncool!

I always thought that it would really suck if I end up in the old folks home and they pipe in classic rock thinking that's what us old codgers want to hear.  Alice Cooper School's Out, and in the evening Bread.. I found her diary beneath a tree,.. and started reading about me.. Well Bread isn't that bad actually..  All I will be able to do is sit there and rattle my hospital bed frame.  If I have the strength that is.

I pride myself in being able to relate to younger people, the music, well at least some of it, but more and more I see a divide growing. I'm not that hip on The Party President.. Saw him on MTV the other day. Thousands of kids in the crowed loving it. I just don't get it, but at least try and relate to some of the new trends and music.

The other day at work I was talking to one of the younger guys who had just returned from a trip to the bay area. I told him I went there when I was a kid back in the late 60s and saw "the hippies".  And he was like yeah there are a lot of freaks down there.  And I'm like no, the real hippies in Golden Gate Park.  We drove down there when I was a kid and my Uncle took us in his car to see the hippies in Golden Gate Park...

After a few minutes of talking to him it was clear he had no idea what I was talking about.  Don't they teach this in school I wondered?  Like before these hippies, there weren't any hippies.. I tried to explain. These hippies were the first and real hippies.  It's where we got the term "hippie". We were "squares" and we drove my uncle's car through the park with the windows rolled up to view "the hippies..  I wasn't getting through to him. I remember one of them ran at the car and made a thump and then went limping off.  Eventually the party for the hippies ended. It just became too much of a drag man.

This guy didn't get it and I couldn't explain it to him.  Maybe they did teach it in school and he just didn't get it then either I though. Well it left and impression on a little boy from Montana I can tell you that.. Back then, it was like regular people's kids would take a drug, and morph into some sort of beast like a werewolf.  That's what I thought when I was a kid anyway.  Like if you took drugs you would turn into a hippie and you'd have to live outside in the park. I would hear my parents talking about a neighbors kid.  "He turned into a hippie!  What a shame.."  Just another lost sole gone over to the dark side.

And now I look at some of the young people, sort of going down the same path the hippies went down.  Somewhat clueless. Just a new breed of hippie getting lost in the traps of youth.  Their trip might be chemical or getting drunk enough to party with The Party President. Maybe their trip is the simple illusion of the constant video game, while other more direct forms of reality escape them. Maybe a future of consumerism is just too hard to face and unlikely to obtain, but somehow they are gonna have to pay for all of the data they are using or the party is going to come to an end.  That's all I have to say about these new hippies.

And you will find me in the nursing home.  I'm going to party like it's 1999!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Happy President Trump Day

Well, today is President Trump Day, so of course I have to work.. I would have thought he would have at least let us have the day off.. Well I can wait until Saturday for a day off.

And now Saturday February 25th is Chick Day in North Idaho so I will be with my chick that day.

Trying to think of something to do on Redneck Day which is coming up on us fast. I'd go ice fishing but all of the ice is melting.. Hm.. Guess I'll shoot at some beer cans or something..

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Private enclaves

I sat here looking at a blank page.  A lot has happened in the last few months but do I really want to air it all out?  Not really.  And it's not writer's block. I just haven't been wanting to go there.  Perhaps I could boil it all down to a few words and then get past it.  So here goes:




And of course Trump, which I guess covers the first three also.

Let me just say this about Trump.  All of that gold and marble he surrounds himself in his private enclave is unmanly.  Wrong on many levels, and at the very best tacky.  Gold should be used making smart phones and semiconductors.., and I can't really think of a good use for marble. 

I listened to Obama's parting speech last night. I guess I'd be ok if the very wealthy would withdraw into their private enclaves of gold and marble,.. if they'd just stay there.

But some, I assume are good people..

Monday, September 19, 2016

Make America Great Again

We've all seen Donald Trump's private jet,..  and we've seen the Trump helicopter,..

But I found the Trump pickup truck and it's for sale in North Idaho!  Own a part of history.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Rock Patio

While on vacation this summer, Queenie and I built a rock patio down by the lake.  We've been collecting flat rocks and turned a spot that was neglected to a nice place to sit and have a fire.  We re-purposed an old wood stove fireplace insert that we bought in BC into a fire pit that will draft and enclose. I'm going to install a short stove pipe and spark arrestor.

We cleaned up a bunch of brush and and trimmed dead tree branches then placed our rocks and wood stove. Then we filled it in and washed it off clean.  Queenie made a little garden for the milkweed which the butterflies like.
I had two old metal lawn chairs that I bought in St. Regis last year, and while we were antique hunting this summer we found two more that matched in Kalispell. I didn't buy them when we first saw them because I didn't have the truck to get them with.  Later, I figured we might as well have 4 matching chairs.  I actually have two more in Washington but one of those is a rocker so I figured I'd go ahead and buy the two in Kalispell as they were within reach and looked good.  I'm glad I did as I think they are really cool.  I did have to take the truck back up there to get them on a day when I was supposed to return to Washington, then I had to wait for the antique store to open as they were an hour late opening.  So I worked for those chairs and I paid a premium, but I'll probably have them for years.

Chromcraft Dinette

I tend to keep buying mid century dinettes.  I found this Chromcraft table at a thrift store for $14.99.  It came with a leaf.  Good deal..!  The minute I saw it I knew what it was and knew I had to have it.  It did not have the chairs, and I'm still on the hunt for the matching ones, but I did find these tulip chairs at another antique store for about $30 each which I think work OK with the table.  I believe them to also be Cromcraft.  So I'm into this set less than $150.  I took this photo before I had it all cleaned up.  The chairs are in really good shape as is the table.  I'm going to try some of the new headlight polish on the chairs.  I'll do it on a spot that doesn't show first, but I suspect that the "Lucite" is acrylic actually and it should work fine, not that the chairs really need it.  The back side of the chairs is a matte finish and the seating side is gloss.  I'll just polish the gloss side of course.  I'll clean up the chrome as well.

One thing I've noticed is that a lot of things I buy are really dirty.  This table was so dirty I could see why they were only asking $14.99 for it.  If the thrift stores and even some of the antique stores would just take the time to clean things up, they might be able to sell them for a lot more.  I guess part of the fun is cleaning the things up and feeling really good about how much you were able to improve the old crusty things..

Friday, June 17, 2016

Mid Century Two Tier Lamp

Here's something you'll really like!.. A while a go I bought this lamp shade off of Craigslist.  I drove all the way across town to get it and that's quite a long way to go.  I thought it was a large shade but when I got there it was small and just for a night stand lamp or something like that.  The gal wanted a large lamp shade price for it and didn't realize it was small.  At least thats what she tried to tell me, but of course Iknow better..  So I talked her down, she wasn't that happy but she sold it to me.  Even so I paid more than I wanted to for it.  So I've been on the hunt for a lamp that would work with it.  I found this lamp outside in the rain at an antique store in Canada.  Got it for $5.  And I think I paid $30 for the shade.  But now this will be a nice lamp for my side of the bed in the Gochenour cabin.  Looks like something out of a 1950s motel.  Love that stuff..  Now just got to hunt down a small blonde dresser to go with it.  Also notice the kitchen tins behind the lamp.  Got those for $6 I think it was.  There are three of them, Tea was the small one.  Coffee the medium sized one and Sugar was the large one.  They didn't have one for lard..

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Amana Radarange

Here's how the new Amana Radarange microwave looks in the Gochenour kitchen.  It's one of the newest things we have in there. That and the Mr. Coffee.  Modern convenience, what can I say.. (it's the thing on the left counter top with two knobs on it.  The upper knob goes to 5 minutes and the lower knob goes up to 30 minutes of radar cooking. The knobs light up when turned on. 

I found out that the polarity of the microwave gets reversed back and forth and that creates friction in the food which heats and cooks it.  Early models of these had an issue of the door leaking microwaves, but that was resolved in 1971 and this is a 1975 model.  A good rule of thumb is if you feel like you are getting hot next to a microwave, then stand back away from it.

From what I understand, Raytheon built a microwave oven in 1947 called the Radarange, then a consumer microwave oven came out under the Tapan brand in the mid 50s but they were expensive and not very common.  In the late 1960s they produced a model like this branded Amana Radarange and had a campaign to introduce them to the public.  At that point they  became affordable and popular and the rest is history. The main difference between this one and the late 60s one is the door leak has been fixed and it has a defrost switch.  Other than that they look the same from what I can tell.

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Steyr Clubman

So I needed a road bike so I could keep up with Queenie while riding with her in Canada.  She is quite speedy on her new bike and it was all I could do to keep up with her on a loaner mountain bike.  So I've had this old Austrian Steyr Clubman from the early 70s in my basement for several years which I got at a yard sale for next to nothing.  It doesn't have any braze on cable stops so I figured I'd convert it into a single speed.  However, that would have required me to hunt down some new wheels and that would have been expensive while I had plenty of 10 speed wheels and fittings.  

So I went to Fred Meyers and bought a cheap cable set that included brake and gear cables and housings.  They weren't the best as they don't have the nylon tube inserts, but I remembered to lube the cables when inserting them into the housings and that works pretty well.  Old school technique using cycle lube or something like that.  Not having cable stops presented another challenge.  They used to have these little tin bands you'd use to fix the housing to the frame, but those things were never that solid so I used black zip ties and it worked better and looks pretty good too.

I have boxes of old bike parts in my basement.  I had everything I needed pretty much.  At first I wanted to have a simplex rear derailleur as that's what came on the bike, and I had a pretty good body but the pulleys kept breaking teeth off so I installed an old Campagnolo Valentino rear.  It looked cool but they never worked that great when they were new.  So I found an old Shimano Eagle rear derailleur which was missing a pulley but I found a pulley and it worked well.  An Eagle was the first rear derailleur I ever had experience with on my first road bike.  It wasn't the best either as it fell apart on a century ride and I ended up riding 50 miles in my middle gear on the back wheel.  For a long time after that I had no confidence in Shimano parts and my next road bike was french with Simplex and Mafac and those parts were solid as rocks back in the 70s when Shimano really hadn't figured things out yet. But now the Eagle works better and it will do fine.

The last thing I might change is the shift levers.  The bike came with the old Simplex plastic levers.  I had two sets and built one working set out of the two.  But I think I might switch that to a Shimano set too as it has more purchase and should work better with the Eagle rear derailleur. And I have a bottle cage and some clamps to hold it onto the frame as once again there are no braze-ons for that either.

My friend gave me some green cello tape.  And I had my choice of the dual position brake levers that were so popular in the 70s or just the single brake levers.  I went with the dual position just for that retro look and also the convenience of being able to brake from the top of the bar.  I also had some nice toe clips and straps.  It has a totally cool hard plastic saddle exactly like I used to use back in the 70s.  I totally love that thing and despite how it looks it is really comfy at least for me.  I wish I could find a few more of those.

Then to finish things off I'm going to put a rear rack on the bike and I might even add fenders.  I have a couple of nice sets of fenders but we will see on that.

One of the things I love about this bike is the cottered crank.  I was getting a little bit of play on that but I tightened up the cotter bolts and it took the slop out I think.  I'll know for sure when I test ride it.    The other thing I love is it rides like a steel bike.  It has that springy feel that you don't get out of other more modern frames.  Can be a little punishing on long rides but on short rides steel bikes are great in my opinion.  Nothing like them.  I'll shake this bike down riding to work a bit.  After I know it is sorted I'll pack the wheel bearings the derailleur pulleys and treat the chain.  Then it should be good to go.

Wednesday, June 01, 2016

New and Used

Been hitting the back roads of Alberta with Queenie for cool old things to add to the Gochenour collection.
Picked up a mid century pole lamp at a thrift store in Lacombe I think it was for $10.  It was hard  to see the potential the way they had it in the store but it really came to life and I'm loving it.  These things are a lot cooler than people think.  You can have 1, 2 or all three lights on, and divide the space in a room.  Pretty nice.
And we saw this Amana Radarange on Craigslist.  Got a killer deal and it will look great in our retro kitchen.  I love everything about this.  Now gotta hunt down a retro cart for it.

Monday, April 04, 2016

Windermere Lake

Here's a picture of Windermere Lake.  What a lovely morning we had along the shore, and what a difference a day makes.  It is pouring down rain and high winds today.  Easter marks the  start of my cycling season and this year I vow to ride my bike more to work.  I did ride it to work last year but not as much as I would have liked.  I smashed my shoulder skiing a couple of years ago and I had trouble leaning over the bars on my bike.  I seem to have recovered enough now though.  I would have ridden to work but I draw the line at riding in the rain.  We will see what happens on Wednesday..

But back to the picture,.. The kit lens that came with my Nikon failed so I ordered another cheap Nikon lens without VR.  I've had trouble with the auto focus and I'm not sure I understand the problem.  I think I've discovered that the lens wasn't making contact with the body as I got one lens not attached message.  So I took it off and put it back on then it started working.  We will see.  I think I'm going to just get a fixed wide angle lens.  But it is nice to have the Nikon back anyway.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Shampoo for bald guys

So I was in the grocery store the other day and walking down the shampoo isle and there's this bald dude picking out shampoo.  I wanted to say, Dude,..you're bald, you don't need shampoo don't waste your money..   But then I thought, this is a pretty big dude, I'd better not say anything, and who knows, maybe you still need shampoo even if you are bald.  It's not like I have a lot of hair these days and I still need shampoo..  But maybe there's a business opportunity here..?  Shampoo for bald guys..

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Happy Valentine's day!

I love you sweetie!

Thursday, January 07, 2016

Macy's closes in downtown Spokane

When I was a kid we used to come to Spokane to shop at the Bon Marche.  It was like this really classy place to shop and the whole thing back then at least for my Mom and sister was this great big treat.  I could have really cared less as a little boy.  My Dad and I would go to the sporting goods section and I would lust over the wooden water skis and wooden bows for archery.  But that was it for me, as Dad and I could have cared less.  We were just killing time while the girls of our family got their shopping fix.

I have to wonder about Macy's closing now though.  It has been said that women shop and men hunt.  I can't remember who said that.. It might have been me who said it.., That at least used to be true.  If women aren't willing to shop at that location now I don't know what the answer is.  I don't think they can expect men to come to the rescue.. unless..

It's too bad in a way though.  For the employees especially.  It's sort of like now what..?  I think everyone thought it would always be there in one form or another.  Maybe if they opened a gun store there.  It seems like that is what is selling these days..  

Monday, December 28, 2015

Dad's old Concert Tone Banjo

I tuned Dad's old Fender Concert Tone banjo EBGD so Julie could play it like a tenor guitar.   Dad would have loved that.  He'd love her too.  

So we sat there in bed Christmas morning, all snowed in, playing banjo and mandolin together and drinking our morning coffee.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

People don't laugh when they are alone

The strangest thing.  People growing up and morphing into an older version of their high school self.  Men who try and maintain that same hair cut they sported in their senior photos.  Unwilling to change the radio station, stuck on that same classic rock and roll.  Listening to Hotel California and becoming the song.

And yet the young folk.. Covered in ink and glued to their phones.  How many funny videos can there possibly be?  Don't get me wrong, I like to watch the odd cat fashion show video from time to time.  Will they be at all like me? In ten years nostalgic for their old I_phone and all of the funny dog videos they used to watch. Or is it just impossible for me to ever understand?

I think I'd rather spend my online time reading reviews of Kirby vacuum cleaner salesmen, and find out who was able to talk the guy down to the best possible deal in the comments section.  Who could talk the guy down to only $800.  That seems to be as low as you can talk them down.  I saw a Kirby in a thrift store for $40 the other day.  I would have bought it but I already have one.  I've heard it said that a Kirby and a Royal are the best built cleaners you can buy.  Try telling that to the guy who just bought a Dyson.  What is going to happen when carpet goes out of style?

And what is going to happen to all of these stainless refrigerators when they go out of style?.. Well they will probably quit working before they go out of style.. I remember telling one of my friends years ago how I loved stainless steel sinks.  I guess that's not the same thing..

I've heard it said that people don't laugh when they are alone. I don't think that's true, but maybe that's why everyone is glued to their phone now.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Volkswagen diesel emission

Funny this should come up now.  In the last week the fall weather has been really nice.  Often the only times I get to be outside are to and from work.  I greatly value my time outside.  So I drive to work with my windows down or I ride my bike.  I just want to be in the fresh air for a while.  

I don't hate smokers, or carry on about them but I really don't  like following one in my car or having one go by while I'm on my bike.  I just want to value the way the morning smells or the fall air after work.  Someone smoking in a car will blow their smoke out and then I don't smell the air, I smell their smoke.  That happens every time I ride my bike.

That's one thing,  but what is worse are diesel trucks.  I have to say that I can't remember having a problem with a VW, but the trucks here are really bad.  I hate getting behind one on the way to work because they are usually going the same direction I am.  It just makes me feel ill.  I go from enjoying the morning air to rolling up the windows too late and cursing them all the way to work for robbing me of my time in the fresh air.  And why in the world are people driving giant trucks to work that are big enough to haul freight?  I can understand towing a trailer or something but not just driving it to work.

The other day on my way to work I got behind a Cummins powered Dodge and had to follow that black cloud all the way to work.  Couldn't have my windows down.  Then on my lunch hour, I was unfortunate enough to get behind this older guy and his wife in a giant diesel Ford Super Duty. They were in no hurry so I'm sure they didn't really have to be anywhere.  Again, windows up the whole way.  It seems to happen almost every day with these trucks.  Volkswagens, not so much.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Open letter to Chrysler Jeep and NHTSA


Dear Chrysler Jeep,

Stop sending me these worthless recall notices about my Jeep.  And shame on NHTSA for going along with this recall solution.

The problem: They put a Pinto exploding gas tank in Jeep models.

The solution:  They want to put a "trailer hitch" (that isn't designed to tow a trailer) on the back of the jeep to protect the gas tank.

The problems with that:

1. It won't keep the tank from exploding.

2. You can't tow a trailer with it and yet it has a 2 inch receiver on it.  Dear NHTSA, How many people do you think in the future when the safety decal on the phoney hitch is long gone are going to hook a boat or a trailer to these Jeeps with the so called "trailer hitch" that isn't designed to tow a trailer? It doesn't really solve the gas tank explosion problem, just adds another potential safety risk to our highways.

3. People don't know the hitch can't be used for towing until it is installed or find out like I did reading jeep forums.

4. They won't reimburse you if you've installed a quality and functional aftermarket trailer hitch.  But it's OK for them to put phoney hitches on all of these Jeeps.  Good grief!

I got on the waiting list at the local dealership and after months of not hearing anything I got tired of being on the waiting list, and tired of calling the service manager who clearly didn't want to deal with the problem, so I bought a class IV Draw-Tite hitch and installed it myself to proper specifications.  I thought maybe I'd be reimbursed. Save Jeep the problem, have a decent functional hitch and all they have to do is pay me the cost of the hitch. But no.

I sent in the receipt for the hitch to the reimbursement center.  Then I got a phone call.  At first the guy on the phone tried to say I didn't have proof of payment.  Which I pointed out as I kept an exact copy on my desk.  Only then he agreed I had proof of payment. (it was clear at that point they are trained to get out of paying out)  Then he said he had to talk to his manager.  She came on the line and said you have to install an OEM Jeep hitch and you can't get those.  How convenient for Jeep.  I couldn't even get the phoney one they are making for the recall.  I was told the wait "would be a while". So no reimbursement. They seemed to do everything they can to not pay out and not to take care of the problem.

Now they are offering a gift card for $100 for your inconvenience..  But you have to go in and have them evaluate your Jeep.  Like that would ever happen...

Well you aren't getting your hands on my Jeep or my new Class IV hitch!!  Stop sending me these stupid recall notices and just send me the $100.  Better yet, send me the cost of the new and quality hitch I bought.  I'll be able to afford a decent obituary for myself with that.

Shame on Chrysler, and  shame on NHTSA for going along with this farce.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Learning to ride a bike

I had the pleasure of teaching Queenie's son how to ride a bike the other day. Now there's one more convert on the planet and we can all go for rides together.  The first person I've ever taught how to ride so it was a pretty big deal for all of us.

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Light Pollution

One of the things that has really been bothering me lately is light pollution.  I remember as a kid growing up at Flathead Lake how amazing the stars were at night up there.  That was part of what was cool about being at the lake.  Now more and more people have moved in and what was once a remote location with very few people has become almost a city.

Recently a neighbor built a large shop on a property not far from my little cabin.  It has lights between each bay and they often are left on at night.  It is lit up all the way around except for the back and the lights are really bright.  Paying for the electricity is no big deal to a lot of these folks.  They have so much money that energy conservation isn't a consideration for them.  The problem with all of these lights is that they don't just light up their own property they shine across several properties including mine.  It's so bright I put up a black army blanket over my already dark curtain and the light still bleeds through the sides into my bedroom at night.

It's one thing to light up your own property, but it's another to impose that light on someone else.  You don't or at least shouldn't have that right.  I'm reading a book called The End of Night by Paul Bogard.  The book defines that situation as "light trespass".  If you must leave lights on at least use fixtures that direct the light down. My neighbor here in Spokanistan built a giant shop behind my house.  On that shop he put a giant bright light that lights up my back yard and the back of my house and also the neighbors on the other side of him.  So no matter if I go to Montana or stay here in Spokanistan I've have someone's light pollution to deal with.

Here's a pic of me in Montana back in the day with my future cabin in the background. The stars used to go all the way down to the horizon in all directions.  I guess those days are gone, and I noticed that it's getting harder and harder to see the milky way up there thanks to all of the light pollution.  It will be gone soon too.  How very sad...

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Ski season 2015

To say that this was the worst ski season I've had ever is an understatement.. Far worse than 2007 I think it was.  I've never seen it so bad in the northwest.  Ah well, at least I didn't get hurt.  But it was a little hard to avoid the rocks.  The coverage was pretty thin in places as you can see in the photo above.  My shadow on the ski slope below taken from the lift.
Here's a picture of Flathead Lake I took last weekend. Well I guess it's time to think about spring things, summer things, and lawn mowing.. If only I didn't have to work. Oh wait a minute, I forgot,. I get 15 days off a year, and I better not complain.  My manager recently said, "isn't that enough time for you to get done what you need to get done!?" and I'm like, well no, not really..  They don't understand that a little more time off a year would keep us from hating each other as much as we do, and we'd probably be a lot more productive.  All day long I think about what I could do after work, then when 5 o'clock rolls around I'm often so burned out and beat up that all I want to do is just sit down and drink a beer. 

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Speaker phone ambush

I've been in a bit of a blogging lull.  More and more I find myself wanting to be in places where there are less people around.  I'm not sure if that's healthy or not.  It's one thing to maintain your own sanity but it's another to put up with everyone else's insanity.  Not that I think I'm sane and everyone else is insane.. nothing like that..  

Anyway, the other day someone in my family speaker phone ambushed me.  Called me on speaker phone with another family member listening in the background and didn't tell me.  When I asked if that person was there and could I talk to them I was told I was on speaker and they were right there..  I didn't think that was very cool.  It's something I'd never do.

One of my friends once said that I try and avoid conflict and I think that's true.  So in this conversation I didn't fall into any traps that may have been set for me.  I avoided saying something that would allow the person calling me to be able to fault me, and yet now I haven't been able to let this go.  The more I thought about it the more it bothered me.  This family member lost my trust a few years back.  I've tried to overlook it, and get past it.  Forgive and forget, right?  Then something like this happens and I remember why that trust was lost.

Not sure how to tie this post up.  I guess there are some things that once broken can't be fully repaired.  They are like that ceramic pot I once talked about that fell off of the shelf and broke into pieces.  You can try and glue it back together and put it back up on the shelf, and if you stand back far enough you may not notice.  But if you get very close to it all of the faults show back up. 

Friday, January 30, 2015

Mid Century Starburst Clock

I picked up this starburst clock for $28 in an antique store up in Canada.  It's really quite something.. And it keeps good time and looks good with my dinette.  Makes you feel like the sun is out every morning.

Thinking of clocks.., I was talking to a co-worker a few years ago.  He said he had a job printing circuit boards.  The place he did this was in the top of an old industrial building and very depressing.  I took a tour of that place one time.  All of these guys were standing at printing tables in a make shift room with a very low ceiling.  It was really depressing in there.  He said they had to stand at those tables and print the same solder mask over and over all day long day after day and it was just like being in prison. There was a school like clock on the wall and it seemed to be going so very slow.

Well I can't really put a good spin on that story other than to say they needed a clock like this one to make them feel a little better.

I have another clock story.. One time in 7th grade a girl in my class waited until our elderly teacher who kept nodding out toward the end of the day, left the room then she got up on a cabinet and set the clock forward a half hour or so.  He returned and didn't notice.  Then when the next bell rang she or someone said Mr, Oldguy it's 3:30! and he came to life, looked up at the clock, lined us all up and we left for the day.. Nobody said anything.

He figured it out after we all left and we had to make up the time and more but it was really funny.

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Elk Crossing

Went up to Canada to bring in the new year with Queenie.  Haven't blogged for a while.  Not sure why, I guess part of it was that I broke the 18 to 55 VR lens on my Nikon.  One of the kit lenses that comes with the camera so now I need to get a new lens.  I still have my point and shoots but haven't been taking many pics.  Here's one of the elk heading north across the highway in BC.

We watched the movie Nebraska and I can honestly say that my family is far stranger than the people in that picture.  Wasn't even close.. Still it was an entertaining film.

It was cold in Canada by my standards.. When I pumped gas into the jeep it -17 deg F.  It was almost a life or death situation at the gas pump.  I was thinking, they will find the dude from the states frozen in place at the gas pump.  Probably have a picture of me in the paper.  Before I left Spokanistan it was 5 above 0 F, and everyone was going on about how cold it was.  That's nothing for the folks up in Canada, and they wouldn't even take notice.  It has to get down to 30 below before they start going to Arizona.

 I took my guitar, mandolin and banjo on my trip with me.  I ended up playing the mandolin and the banjo but not the guitar.. That's cool for me because I'm defaulting to those and not the guitar.  I did sell my resonator banjo and my cheap mandolin to raise money to buy a much better two piece flange banjo that converts from resonator to open back.  Pretty stoked about that.  I think I was very lucky to sell the old ones online.  Everyone plays guitar but not that many people play banjo and mando.  It's really hard to sell them with so many options these days.  I figured out that good photos and descriptions help selling online.  Plus the Christmas season doesn't hurt either.

Oh and I also bought a cool vintage mid century mod starburst clock at an antique store.  Post a pic of that later.

Happy New Year.

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Flathead Lake in October

Here's a picture of Flathead lake in October.  I remember taking this photo but I thought it was a while ago.  It just shows you that I'm loosing it.. I'm loosing touch with reality.  For a while I was thinking I wouldn't post any more interesting pictures on my blog because people were just taking them without asking, or they wanted them but didn't want to pay anything or very little.  Now I have a plan to deal with that situation, but nothing is easy right?

Those are geese out there not ducks..  You have to click on the photo to make it big to sort of see them.  Right in the middle.  I was talking to my uncle about the birds he was seeing in Montana.  He noticed the doves too, as I've noticed them in the Flathead for the first time that I can remember these past couple of years. He also noticed the golden eagle migration that I had heard about on the CBC and I'm pretty sure he hadn't heard anything about it in the media on online.    

People think my uncle is a little odd and I guess that might be a fair viewpoint, but I just think he's in touch with different things.  He's more in touch with the outdoors than most people are.  In some ways he's a lot more in touch with reality than the rest of us.

I was talking to him and all of the sudden he started to cough as if he were choking.  He made this really weird shape with his mouth and had this insane look on his face.  He looks a bit insane anyway.  It was really strange.  I thought he might woof, but then he regained his composure and went on talking about all of the birds in his back yard.     

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Alberta Landscape

Alberta Landscape
One of the things I like to do is take pictures out of the car window as we drive along.  (I wasn't driving)  Sometimes they turn out and sometimes they don't, but the fun in it is that you don't have much time to compose your shot.  It's more like a gesture drawing and sort of how we see the world one glimpse at a time as we drive along.

I was remarking on how big the sky looks in this part of Alberta south of Edmonton.  Montana is called Big Sky Country, but Alberta is the same.  Click on the picture to see the horses.

Monday, October 06, 2014

Vintage cat magazine rack

The minute I saw this magazine rack I had to have it. Queenie wasn't as thrilled as I was about it, but she loves it now. The thrift store hadn't opened yet and this was outside with other great items, so I hid it until we could get in the store and pay the $2 they wanted for it.  I'm gonna put it in the cabin next to the piano for music or magazines or even LPs.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Mid century dinette

I saw this mid century dinette at an antique mall a month or so ago.  I thought it was so cool but they wanted what I thought was too much money for it, $275 or something like that.  So I left but I did regret not buying it.. Well I wandered back into that shop the other day and they had dropped the price down to $125.  I thought it would be gone and they had moved it.  So I got it for $100.  The chairs are from a later set but I think they match up well.  It replaces my older 1940s set that can be seen here

I know what you're thinking,. the yellow one is cooler and I do love the table, but chairs are torn up and it wasn't a matching set either.  Actually this "new" one is much nicer and more unique.  I can relate to the design better.  It's a little more space age.  It's larger also and more comfortable.  This thing makes me happy just to look at it.