We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Monday, August 14. 2017
‘Wind River’ Is A Criminally Underrated Film
Grand Central Terminal’s Swankiest Bar Reopens As the Campbell
FAR-LEFT FASHION AT VOGUE
47 Hospitals Slashed Their Use Of 2 Key Heart Drugs After Huge Price Hikes
When it's OK to mock bums
"It is likely that from a strictly environmental point of view, practices like buying local and subsidizing renewable energy have adverse effects."
It's just a virtue fad
CA sued for not offering assisted suicide
The Atlanitc: This author is certain that only he is "reality-based"
DC hasn’t come to grips with Trump’s presidency
Is Charlottesville What's Really Going On in the USA?
Of course not
What is Kim’s Strategy?
Sunday, August 13. 2017
Just home and perused Roger's Saturday links. He is so good at this. Too bad I can't afford to pay him more than he makes painting barns in Maine with red primer. Roger, I have done my share of red barn painting and entirely agree with the idea that nothing but lead is effective for endurance. Nowadays, we can easily add lead to lead-free paint.
Amongst other kayaking adventures this past ten days, Mrs. BD and I went to sea and almost made it to Jeremy Point when my back cramped up so we only had a 4-hr trip. This was a remarkably calm day in Cape Cod, but the tidal currents which you can not see are what wear you out. Do not wish to be carried too far out to sea. That's Mrs. BD in front of me, off the shores of Great Island, Wellfleet.
Fitness nuts that we are, all of our daily outdoor exertions are after our morning 50-minute prescribed calisthenics. Yes, we may be crazy but we are physically, if not mentally, tough.
Why are kayaks such krazy kolors? So you are visible to other watercraft - or to the Coast Guard if you are flushed beyond paddle distance by currents (which did happen to one of my bothers in law one time, years ago. He only sails now).
We seek secluded beaches for skinny dipping. Why not? Nobody is out there. Just Ospreys. Is it true that, when a couple quits wanting to skinny-dip, the romance is over? Beaches are all about wholesome exhibitionism and sex. Good things. Get brown, trim, fit, and happy. It is spiritual.
I strongly suggest taking math, engineering, or a hard science as far as a kid can go in high school and/or college. If they only use it to read newspapers and magazines, it will train the mind and make a good impression on future employers. If a kid is a "no math creative," then I don't know what to say other than "I'm sorry to hear it."
Like most other bugs, their "adult" reproductive phases are usually brief - a week or two. However, their time as eggs, larvae (in this case, caterpillars), and pupae varies depending on species and climate.
Some even migrate (eg Monarchs) and some, like Mourning Cloaks, (photo) hibernate, which is why you sometimes see them fully-fledged on the first warm days of Spring. Tough buggers, live on tree sap.
How Long Do Butterflies Live?
Saturday, August 12. 2017
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 14:09 | Comments (3) | Trackbacks (0)
Nope. Dairy barns were painted white -- with lead paint --to indicate purity. Barns are painted all colors, but most red ones were covered with red lead primer. Lead oxide, linseed oil, turpentine and Japan drier. Most outbuildings didn't merit paint, and red lead primer was the cheapest stuff you could buy. Cary Grant learned not to mix white lead primer with red lead primer in Operation Petticoat.
Legos suck. Bring back American Bricks!
You can make butter with milk and a stick. Command economies can't solve anything.
We've finally reached peak passion.
Look at the picture. It's like these dweebs share one, big closet to go with their one, big opinion.
Listen, poindexters. We stopped going to the moon because there's nothing to do there. It was a stunt, to outdo the Soviet Union.
"Crowdfunded vessel." Heh. Have you tried my Indiegogo vaccines? They're free-range.
This accurate description of recent investor/business relationships tells you all you need to know about the last 10 years.
His motorcade doesn't obey the speed limit. They should revoke his driver's license, too.
He just really likes typing Libor.
Get Shorty was a perfect movie. Get Shorty was a passable book. Get Shorty will be a terrible TV show.
This becomes a problem when the government changes hands, apparently.
Have a great Saturday, everyone! Maybe paint your barn red, and then paint the town red.
Friday, August 11. 2017
Clever sociopaths can put on a "mask of sanity" and, if careful enough, make successful lives in some careers.
When Your Child Is a Psychopath - The condition has long been considered untreatable. Experts can spot it in a child as young as 3 or 4.
Politics is what damaged education. Politics, and education fads. The 5 'Isms' That Destroyed Education
Hi everybody. It's Friday. Light the smoking lamp early. Run the cocktail flag up the mizzen before you're under sail. It's noontime somewhere. Bust out the tonsil polish while the sun rides high. Bunk off. Take a mental health day. Slack. Don't kill the job. Make up your mind to procrastinate. Indole.
Read the links first, though.
If you've always wondered what a conservative is, and you work in hi-tech, the nice man will tell you in fourth-grade syntax about this rare but terrifying animal.
All of them work just fine, thank you -- if you're running them. Duh.
That's the best definition of blogging I've seen.
IBM should get with the times and appoint a female CEO to straighten out this mess. Oh.
Listen, iPhone drones. There's only one way to tell your airline you hate it. It has a steering wheel.
I and Pangur Ban my cat, 'tis a like task we are at; hunting mice is his delight, hunting words I sit all night...
An Irishman, late for an appointment, prays, "Lord, if you give me a parking space, I'll give up Guinness and go to Mass every Sunday." A parking space immediately opens up. The Irishman sticks his head out the window, looks up, and says, "Never mind, I found one."
Debts backed by physical assets are so 20th Century.
As long as Flinger's and Chotchkie's stay open, I don't care. You want to come over and watch Kung Fu?
Perhaps we should declare war on it. You know, a war on drugs.
It's unclear to me where Kevin Bacon fits into this.
Janet Yellen can't even cause inflation right. Where's Arthur F. Burns when you need him?
Thursday, August 10. 2017
An early-twentieth-century grassroots movement for mass secondary education positioned the nation for world leadership.
Faking confidence isn't a bad starting approach, but the real trick is to improve one's rejection tolerance and that can only be achieved by enduring rejection.
Toon on top via Althouse. Image below via the article.
Is academic language in the humanities and social sciences designed to obfuscate, is it just packaged cant from people with nothing to say, or is it smoke-signaling?
One prof claims "As a professor ... one seeks not to find the foundation and the conditions of truth but to exercise power for the purpose of social change.”
Posted by The Barrister in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 13:26 | Comments (10) | Trackbacks (0)
All the guy at Google did was mention that in a private moment, he has entertained the thought that Google's wife has bingo wings and halitosis, and Google's kid eats library paste. Some how or another, it merits a sacking, followed by the kind of attention that Leo Tolstoy used to get in Russia. I don't get it.
I hereby propose that Google's original, stupid, gilt-edged lie of a motto, Don't Be Evil, be changed to a more up-to-date, honest version: Don't Be Male. Works for me. So does Start Page.
On to the links!
Everything is just Pichai at Google.
That's a lot of words to call a guy a conniving jerk.
I remember some inter-war poll of Oxford students who claimed they wouldn't fight for their country, either, egged on by Bloomsbury pansies. They all climbed into Spitfires when the time came. Talk is cheap, coming and going.
If you've never experienced the wonder of Russian dashcam video, you're in for a treat.
I remember that show. That was a good show. Good show all around, Glen, and RIP
Joe Stalin knew how to get women to undertake a grueling trek halfway across Russia to Siberia, whether they wanted to or not. I guess the NYT still misses the guy.
Net neutrality my keister. I wonder what the FCC fine for ten billion wardrobe malfunctions would be if cable and internet really got the same treatment.
Fighting over the last Funyun is bound to send your diastolic through the roof.
Someone should mention to little sooper genius boy that we already have self-driving trucks. They're called rail cars.
A woman plaintiff, so this one will stick.
In complex matters like these, it's much simpler to assume everyone involved, including the author of the article, is a jerk, and deserves no sympathy. Saves time and aggravation.
Well, there's the links. Have a great Thursday. And don't worry, Maggie's Farm waitstaff would never flirt with you to get a better tip. We might rifle through your belongings if you don't keep an eye on them, though.
Wednesday, August 9. 2017
Stairmaster intervals provide possibly the most efficient and intense cardio exercise. Your heart rate jumps up to max immediately.
You can do 30 seconds of high-speed anaerobic intervals then slow down for 60 seconds, and repeat at the speeds that work for you. If you can do two steps at a time on the higher speeds, so much the better. Another approach which I am using now is to do 3-minute stairs at the highest speed I can handle for that long, then get off and do a one-minute plank and another minute to breathe, then back on. Thus a 20-min cardio work-out which also beats the hell out of your quads.
What is it good for? It's for intense cardio training, lower body endurance, core stress. It doesn't build strength per se the way squats and deadlifts do, but it does work for lower body "toning" at the least.
Because it is very low-impact, about the same as walking, it is also a cardio recommendation for people with bad knees, hips, and lower back.
(Readers know that we believe that two 20-30 minute cardio stress sessions weekly is enough cardio, if combined with the other weight and calisthenics routines.)
Five hours or less per week of weights, calis, and cardio is all it takes for general Fitness for Life. Then throw in some sports or hiking or yoga or golf or swims or whatever for fun, plus some Cokes or beers as rewards, and you've been a darn good steward of your body, which is your most important real estate. Anybody can find time for that. Just avoid any distance running or you will regret it.
Spanning the spectrum of mankind's achievements, there are certain key moments that stand out in each field. I'm going to cover a few here, and if you have any additions that you think I might be interested in doing a future post on, leave a synopsis and maybe a link or two in the comments.
When it comes to the heading of 'Inventions', I think the sublime moment is this:
As I note in the piece, what's particularly baffling about it all is that we have natural axle-ready 'wheels' around us in nature, i.e., an eroded pebble in a stream bed or a sawed-off piece of tree trunk with a knot in the middle which pops out. So you'd think it would have evolved naturally, like fire, without any historical point of reference you could point to. But nope.
So, if you had to boil it down to one single moment, the great architects of the Egyptian empire seeing the wheel for the first time gets my vote.
Continue reading "Great moments in human achievement"
What we call "cardio" is really endurance-maintenance and endurance-building for people with sedentary (ie less than 6 hours/wk of short-of-breath exertion) lives. The idea is to keep heart rate far above walking or recreational biking, with sprints of max heart rate, for 1 hr+. At this point, I can tell how hard my heart is pounding without looking at any gauge.
Our current cardio routine gets us moving with vigor and lots of sweat, and the time flies:
- 15 minutes elliptical, moving resistance up and down the scale from 3 to 15
That's just a bit over an hour if you take very little rest to breathe - which you are not supposed to do.
A friend sent along this video from a recital for a music store in Los Angeles. Holy cow she's only ten years old. Double-plus good: That's her mother accompanying her on the piano. Cool choice of music, too. "Sicilienne" by Maria Teresia von Paradis. She was a blind musician and composer who had Salieri for a teacher and Mozart for a friend.
I don't know about you, but when I was ten years old, I was still eating earthworms I found in the playground, and my mother only played the radio. There's some hope for the human race yet.
On to the links!
Little Kimmie better not work outside in the yard too often. Shame if something fell on him.
Mmm. Polyphenols. If I recall my chemistry correctly (I bet I don't), Polyphenols are called "anti-nutrients." I don't go out of my way to eat anti-nutrients.
It appears that everyone in Europe is a French waiter now.
If you scuttle your ship, do you have to keep up the loan payments? I'm asking for a friend.
He's kinda cute. Unless you're a squirrel.
Neato. I wonder if they have a copy of Good Old Shoe?
Apple employees are revolting? I'll say they are.
I would have answered, "Because, unlike Greeks, they have some."
I love the term "cord cutters." People who used to pay one cable TV bill and a small internet bill will now pay seventeen streaming service bills and a giant internet bill for bandwidth. You know, to save aggravation and money.
Not a NIMBY, I see.
I think they misunderstood him. I think he was just referring to hanging them all on telephone poles.
Harrumph. Back in my day, sonny, we just married the boss's daughter.
Well, there are the links for today. I hope you're all ready for another grueling day of resting and vesting, or being henpecked, or maybe even working if you can't avoid it.
Tuesday, August 8. 2017
Inspiring summer reading recommendation: David McCullough's The American Spirit
Lucille Ball? That Lucille Ball? Cate Blanchett is pretty enough to play Ethel Mertz. Maybe
Darwin worshipers hardest hit
"And pass the savings along to passengers." Pull the other one. It has bells on
All I know is that The Yakuza is a criminally underrated movie
According to David Stockman, the market will crash every day for 36 years and counting
No one brings the potato salad to the Mensa meetings in Equatorial Guinea
Poor Glenn. What did he ever do to this guy to get compared to MSNBC? Shoot his dog?
I remember the good old days when we called it "gnarly" instead of "awesome"
I remember the good old days when surfing was gnarly
I think I'm supposed to warn you there's some naked people if you follow the hyperlink. The way the internet is going, pretty soon we'll have to warn you when there aren't naked people at the link
You have to admit, that headline is right up there with Headless Body In Topless Bar.
Wow. That kind of fascist policing wouldn't fly in an enlightened country like the USA. And shootings and stabbings in Denmark? Must be fake news
Who could have predicted that Japanese youngsters would be better behaved than Americans?
They're just following orders from fewer people
Don Baylor was a blast to watch. He'd stand in one batters box and lean over the other one. RIP, big fella
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 04:04 | Comment (1) | Trackbacks (0)
Monday, August 7. 2017
The cup trick. He explains it, sort of.
Posted by The News Junkie in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 16:58 | Comment (1) | Trackbacks (0)