Impeach My lily-White Abs

I ain’t buying a damned inch of it.

If everything they wished were true about Trump should somehow be made real, and it ain’t, it would still come nowhere close to what was done to us by the Obama and Clinton Administration.  I mean that.  The media, the Democrats, and the Republicans are all utterly uninterested in what happened at Benghazi and an airport in Florida.  That tells me what I need to know.... [Read More]


This is so sad.

[Bad language at the link.]

I don’t get the calculation in the article of it’s terrible for a child to have one parent but just fine and dandy to end the child’s life. It makes me sick the anthem of “I am not ready to be a parent.” by people who doing parent creating things.... [Read More]


Book Review: The Boys’ Book of Model Railroading

“The Boys' Book of Model Railroading” by Raymond F. YatesIn the years before World War II, Lionel was the leader in the U.S. in manufacturing of model railroad equipment, specialising in “tinplate” models which were often unrealistic in scale, painted in garish colours, and appealing to young children and the mothers who bought them as gifts. During the war, the company turned to production of items for the U.S. Navy. After the war, the company returned to the model railroad market, remaking their product line with more realistic models. This coincided with the arrival of the baby boom generation, which, as the boys grew up, had an unlimited appetite for ever more complicated and realistic model railroads, which Lionel was eager to meet with simple, rugged, and affordable gear which set the standard for model railroading for a generation.

This book, published in 1951, just as Lionel was reaching the peak of its success, was written by Raymond F. Yates, author of earlier classics such as A Boy and a Battery and A Boy and a Motor, which were perennially wait-listed at the public library when I was a kid during the 1950s. The book starts with the basics of electricity, then moves on to a totally Lionel-based view of the model railroading hobby. There are numerous do-it-yourself projects, ranging from building simple scenery to complex remote-controlled projects with both mechanical and electrical actuation. There is even a section on replacing the unsightly centre third rail of Lionel O-gauge track with a subtle third rail located to the side of the track which the author notes “should be undertaken only if you are prepared to do a lot of work and if you know how to use a soldering iron.” Imagine what this requires for transmitting current across switches and crossovers! Although I read this book, back in the day, I’m glad I never went that deeply down the rabbit hole.... [Read More]


Taking Their Two Cents Worth

Tomorrow, October 1, 2019, will be the day the Japanese government will take an extra two cents(yen) out of most 100 cents(yen) of purchases. Here is an article to explain the wonderful world of Japanese Consumption taxes. This tax hike will be confusing because on some things it will be still 8%. For example if you buy something at Starbucks you will pay 8% if you order it to go but 10% if you sit in the restaurant and eat it.

John, on my contract do I have a “cost of tax” clause? Will I get a 2% increase in salary?


This Week’s Book Review – The Walls Have Ears

I write a weekly book review for the Daily News of Galveston County. (It is not the biggest daily newspaper in Texas, but it is the oldest.) After my review appears on Sunday, I post the previous week’s review here on Sunday.... [Read More]


SpaceX Starship Update

In the early morning of September 29th, 2019 UTC (evening of September 28th local time in Texas, the 11th anniversary of SpaceX’s first orbital launch for a Falcon 1), SpaceX founder and Chief Engineer Elon Musk presented a perspective on the history of SpaceX and its plans for the Starship and Super Heavy reusable heavy lift launcher.


See Spot Run

Boston Dynamics have announced that their autonomous mobile robot, Spot, is now kind-of available as a kind-of product.  I say “kind-of” because they haven’t yet quoted a price (according to an article in IEEE Spectrum, it’s expected to be in the range of a luxury car), and sales of the limited production will be in an “early adopter program” targeting customers in industries developing applications for such technology.... [Read More]


An Ode to Kent Hance

Who is this Kent Hance of whom I speak? He is the former Chancellor of the Texas Tech University System, a former congressman from West Texas, and the man who destroyed Texas Tech football when he fired the legendary Mike Leach in December 2009. Herewith, my poem (with apologies to Percy Bysshe Shelley):

Hanceymandias... [Read More]


“I’m a taxpayer. You work for me.”

Here is Thomas Homan, former director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), testifying at a House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration and Citizenship hearing.  Wait for the end when the Democrat chairbeing tries to hammer him into silence.


College Football 2019 – Week 5

Autumn has finally arrived, but the action on the field (and the sidelines) remains as hot as ever! Here are some of this week’s games.

The Atlantic Coast Conference has the Syracuse Orange 🍊 defending home against the Holy Cross Crusaders 🗡, the North Carolina Tar Heels 🦶 host the defending champion #1 Clemson Tigers 🐅, the N.C. State Wolfpack 🐺 face the Florida State Seminoles 🏹 on the road, the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 🐝 are also on the road at the Temple Owls 🦉, and the #10 Notre Dame Fighting Irish ☘️ have a showdown with the #18 Virginia Cavaliers 🤺 in South Bend.... [Read More]


Bogota Judo


“Throw…throw..throw.” The sensei chanted it like a metronome. I ran the mat, with an uke on either side. Each time I reached uke, I threw him with the assigned throw, and then turned and jogged–well, trundled, really, to the throw-ee on the other side of the mat. The exercise was meant to shape and chisel throwing technique so that good technique could challenge exhaustion. And pain. And, apparently, hypoxia.... [Read More]