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, October 9. 2017
COLUMBUS DAY & CULTURE WAR
Truth is, he was a very interesting and noteworthy guy, especially compared with you and me
What Went Wrong With the Right Whales? Necropsies reveal how six of the 12 North Atlantic right whales that died in Canadian waters this summer met their end.
Why Don’t Whales Get Out of the Way? Ships are huge and loud, yet they seem to take whales by surprise.
But " we all know that in a he-said/she-said situation on campus, we’re supposed to believe the women!"
Even ‘diversity educators’ can’t take the snowflakes complaining about ‘microaggressions’
University Of Wisconsin To Crack Down On Disruptions Of Free Speech
Only 7 percent of Yale professors identify as conservative, survey finds
SCHOOL EMBRACES IDENTITY POLITICS, DROPS 30 PLACES
" academic progressives need incidents like this so they can pretend that their world is terribly threatened by dark forces."
No contemplation of their own dark forces
Pop Goes the Liberal Media Bubble - Column: Trump drives the mainstream media to abandon the pretense of objectivity
WTF MSM!? Our rights come from God, not man
"... it’s just bizarre that the Gray Lady would green-light this series."
What Is The Biggest Corruption In Politics Today?
AP Omitted Expert Quotes That Didn’t Fit The Narrative About Global Warming
Las Vegas Prostitute: Paddock Believed He Was ‘Born Bad’
Figures. Harvey Weinstein Attended Pussy March Against Trump – A Target Rich Environment
US/CANADIAN MUSLIMS PLOTTED NEW YORK RAMADAN MEMORIAL DAY ATTACK
Sen. Durbin Spills the Beans on Amnesty: Admits ‘DREAM Act’ a Ploy for Open-Ended Amnesty
This Is How Donald Trump Thinks the U.S. Government Works - And why his supporters should care about it.
Here's what Corker is saying: "It's a shame the White House has become an adult day care center. Someone obviously missed their shift this morning."
I've thought the same sometimes
Details Emerge On Trump’s Plan To Sell Insurance Across State Lines
Trump unveils new strict 70-point immigration enforcement
ICE Warns California Illegal Aliens: Don’t Get Cozy; New Sanctuary State Law Won’t Protect You
IRELAND HONORS CHE GUEVARA
Polish Catholics pray at borders´to save country´
Sunday, October 8. 2017
The Southern Flying Squirrel is found throughout the eastern US and southeastern Canada. They inhabit good-sized mature deciduous woodlands.
Because they are entirely nocturnal, you probably don't know whether you have them around or not but if you are neither in, nor on the edge of a forest, you likely do not. Big eyes, to see in the dark.
Owls eat them.
Cute little buggers. They use their tails as rudders. I have never seen one in the wild. Have you?
Bill Maher and Ross Douthat (NYT columnist) from 2012
21:33 "Listen to another parable. There was a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a fence around it, dug a wine press in it, and built a watchtower. Then he leased it to tenants and went to another country.
21:34 When the harvest time had come, he sent his slaves to the tenants to collect his produce.
21:35 But the tenants seized his slaves and beat one, killed another, and stoned another.
21:36 Again he sent other slaves, more than the first; and they treated them in the same way.
21:37 Finally he sent his son to them, saying, 'They will respect my son.'
21:38 But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, 'This is the heir; come, let us kill him and get his inheritance.'
21:39 So they seized him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him.
21:40 Now when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?"
21:41 They said to him, "He will put those wretches to a miserable death, and lease the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the produce at the harvest time."
21:42 Jesus said to them, "Have you never read in the scriptures: 'The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord's doing, and it is amazing in our eyes'?
21:43 Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people that produces the fruits of the kingdom.
21:44 The one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; and it will crush anyone on whom it falls."
21:45 When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they realized that he was speaking about them.
21:46 They wanted to arrest him, but they feared the crowds, because they regarded him as a prophet.
Saturday, October 7. 2017
My chef friend told me that home-made Reese's are better than store-bought, and you can make whatever sizes you want. (I wonder whether you can make them pie-sized and cut them in slices. Why not? Might be good with ice cream on top)
- Buy whatever sort of peanut butter you want. Put it in silicone candy molds and freeze in freezer.
- To make them even better, sprinkle a little kosher salt on top before the chocolate hardens.
After more research and experience, and taking into account reader comments, I have come up with two or three good ideas for rugged hiking, eg Europe's "Moderate hill-walking, or Level 2" which is what they call "Difficult" or "Challenging" in the wimpy US hiking ratings.
Made in male and female versions, all at Amazon:
- Montane Terra Pants
- Columbia Silver Ridge Stretch Convertible Pant
- Montane Alpine Trek Pant
- LL Bean's Knife Edge Pants
I also like the Prana brand.
Note: If you like those Montane pants, make sure you check their size guide . I had to order from the UK (Montane UK) to get my correct size.
For colder weather, you can just use winter underwear with them. These are not really hunting and brush-busting pants, or for happy weekend walks-in-the-woods either, but for extended hikes in mixed weather with some mud, mountains, boulders, and scree, etc. White Mountain, Rockies, and Dolomites hikes. I am eager to get on Mt. Washington, but next on our schedule is good old Storm King.
BTW, what is it with the word "pant" ? I always thought it was a plural.
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 14:38 | Comments (9) | Trackbacks (0)
The Science Behind Mona Lisa’s Smile
But Why Aren’t People Rushing To Buy My Art?
There’s A Scientific Explanation For Why Fires Are So Romantic
'Our minds can be hijacked': the tech insiders who fear a smartphone dystopia
Craigslist Has Become A Total Sewer of Scammers
Study: Free College is Bad for Students. Is free K-12 Education also bad for students?
Antifa Group Plans Nationwide 'Deface Columbus Day' Actions for Monday
BOB DYLAN’S “THE TIMES THEY ARE A-CHANGIN’” IS OUR SONG NOW
San Franciscans Pissed To Learn Their Liberal Policies Caused A Wave Of Restaurant Failures
Alan Dershowitz Derides Theory of Intersectionality in Columbia Lecture
NFL players’ union teamed up with Soros to fund leftist advocacy groups. Tax documents show NFLPA activism goes beyond take-a-knee protests
Chris Matthews: How Can These Conservatives Believe Gun Rights Are God-Given And Precede The Constitution?
Politico: Who Will Lead the Left on Gun Control? Democrats’ proposed solutions to massacres like the one in Las Vegas aren’t serious, and they know it.
Scott Adams: The Worst Gun Control Arguments
Three Men Arrested For ISIS-Inspired Plot to Attack Concerts, Subways in NYC
UN HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS WIPES ISRAEL OFF THE MAP
In Austria's lake region (70 lakes), from my traveling friend
Friday, October 6. 2017
A book: Darwinian Sexual Selection and the Politics of Beauty By Ethan Linck
Butterflies Confuse Denver Radar-Watchers
Pepsi Pushes Healthier Drinks, Sales Go Down in North America
Duh. Soft drinks are for fun, not health
Who’s Ready For A 45′ Tall Naked Woman On The National Mall All Winter?
The Donald might get a kick out of it
"When Ms. Ruzickova was 15, the family received what the Germans called 'an invitation' to Terezin, which the Nazis considered a model concentration camp for the cultural elite."
Why isn't trans surgery malpractice?
I think it is
The Sociology of Sociologists - Arnold Kling
Campus free speech is on its deathbed By Post Editorial Board
Good. That was not about clean. It was about CO2
Like Schools, Parks, Social Programs? Too Bad, Because Retirees Get Paid First - New report shows how California's pension obligations are crowding out spending on other things.
The Implications of DACA Amnesty and Chain Migration
Exactly what makes people who are unlawfully present in the United States think they have the right to demand legislation?
Vietnam Vets for Factual History
Facts ‘The Vietnam War’ left out - Communist barbarism that invited U.S. involvement was left on the cutting room floor
6 reasons why Puerto Rico slid into financial crisis
Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock’s mental health was in steady decline leading up to the massacre which killed nearly 60 people and injured over 500.
Noonan: The Culture of Death—and of Disdain. Why do Americans own so many guns? Because they don’t trust the protected elites to protect them.
She is so wrong. Under British law, commoners were not allowed to own swords for centuries. Commoners want weapons too for whatever reason. Now the elites want their armed bodyguards but they don't want me to have my .22?
Harsanyi: Come And Take Them, Bret Stephens - As an American-Jew whose ancestors came here escaping both Nazism and communism, I totally 'get' the Second Amendment 'fetishists.'
The argument that "Conservatives don't care"
Conservatives care about your freedom
Nothing Makes Liberals Angrier Than Us Normals Insisting On Our Rights
TRUCK CONTROL, IT ONLY HAPPENS HERE AND OTHER GUN CONTROL MYTHS - 4 mass shooting myths exposed.
NY Times Reporter to Ivanka Trump and Her Children: “F**k You!” and “You’re a Bucket of T*rds”
Why is the US in Niger?
I haven't visited Budapest. It certainly is a very popular destination, partly because it has become a world-class city but also because, having been commie-controlled for so long, much of it is frozen in amber due to poverty and lack of development. Well, WW2 did a lot of damage to Budapest as it did to Vienna.
Interesting history of course.
Seems like he enjoyed the visit to Bratislava the most on the entire cruise.
A few pics from my pal from Budapest. A bridge linking Buda with Pest:
More below the fold -
Continue reading "Budapest pics"
Thursday, October 5. 2017
Photo is a lady doing guy push-ups
100 is getting easier already. I had to take one day off, though, for "recovery". We did a 3-hour woodsy hill hike instead. Well, now I am doing sets of 15 instead of 10, and next week it will be sets of 20. Raise that efficiency despite the burn. One thing I notice is that the quicker you do them, the better.
Also, I do not do the push-ups on my bench press day. That would not be sensible.
Two years ago, I could hardly do 3 pushups. My shoulder pain problem didn't help (it has improved a lot with exercise), but I was weak too. OK, I do not have a muscular build but I am somewhat fit for my age and build at this point. Plenty of guys my age are fitter than me and I still suck and can't do pull ups. My goal for this 100/day challenge is to do 50 in one set with good form. I'll be satisfied with that. Or maybe I won't be.
A good part of fitness is that you can pursue it even if you have no special athletic talent and are not highly coordinated. The only sport I can play with any competence at all now is tennis, but fitness can be a sport or hobby of its own and it's good for mental, spiritual, physical, and sexual health. We all want to approach life with as much vigor as we can muster for as long as we can.
How are our readers doing with this game? The gals too. Any cheaters? Any quitters?
New York’s 9/11 tribute mesmerizes birds — and might help save them
What Is Sukkot? A Guide to The Jewish Holiday of Sukkot, The Feast of Tabernacles, and the Meanings Behind it
Automotive News and electric cars
Wait, You've Never Heard of Wife Appreciation Day? Me Neither.
Every day must be wife appreciation day. Or else.
A cool CV
Berkeley students protest exam because noted professor isn't Mexican
Black Lives Matter Students Shut Down the ACLU's Campus Free Speech Event Because 'Liberalism Is White Supremacy' - "The revolution will not uphold the Constitution."
These morons are beclowning themselves
Two House Democrats have written a letter to Twitter’s Jack Dorsey, threatening “increased regulations” if Twitter fails to crack down on objectionable speech.
Evil. This is not China
Too Many People Dream of a Charmed Life in Academia - Brilliant colleagues. Curious students. High status. Earning less than half of what a kindergarten teacher makes.
No wonder they are lefties. They are oppressed and exploited by their employers
Senators Want to Make Prosecutors Prove Defendants Intended to Break Laws Before Locking Them Up - In a country with so many crimes, many laws don’t require proof citizens knew they were doing wrong.
Ignorance of the law should be a defence. Nobody knows all the laws
Fresh proof of charter-school miracles
Why Ken Burns’ “Vietnam” on PBS Matters
How come this guy wasn't thrown out of West Point? For his behavior
Donors of Anti-Trump ‘Resistance’ Group Revealed
There is always Tides Foundation and Soros $
It’s time for the league to start leading by example. The time is right for the NFL Equality Plan.
Check your physical privilege. It oppresses me.
Dem Rep. Says He Would Personally Bulldoze “Every Inch” of US-Mexico Border Wall
Statistician: After Researching Gun Violence, I No Longer Believe In Gun Control
Re a Politico article: Other than that, the story was accurate
Ben Stein lost a good friend over Trump
Do The Media Hate Trump? Yes, And From The Very Start Of His Presidency, New Survey Shows
Good News: Trump Just Privatized A Piece Of ObamaCare
Trump prepares to wound Iran deal — and then save it - The president's national security team finds a way for Trump to wound 'the worst deal ever' without killing it.
Israel Prepares for War in Syria against Iran
Pepper market in Budapest, the land of paprika, from my riverboat friend. Hungarian food must have been bland before peppers arrived from the New World in the 1500s
Wednesday, October 4. 2017
Man wakes up to adorable lynx kittens on his porch
Lesbian Methodist Bishop Calls Jesus a Bigot
A NYT wedding announcement
A commenter: We turn now, with the greatest of reverance, to Monty Pyton to reference "The upper class Twits of the year" award.
Worse than we thought – humans have altered Earth’s history
Warmists Are Making A Big Push To Come After Cows
Why Give Public Sector Unions So Much Bargaining Power?
Budweiser considers ending their NFL sponsorship over protests — and they want to hear from you
How Puerto Rico Can Rebuild and Become the Hong Kong of the West
"You Have NO Right to DEMAND Anything!!" Tucker Carlson RIPS Entitled Illegal Immigrant
Spengler: The bells of Barcelona toll for Europe
Catalan referendum: Region's independence 'in matter of days'
Top Indonesian Muslim Scholar Says Stop Pretending That Orthodox Islam and Violence Aren't Linked
A few pics from my pal's Danube trip
More Wachau Valley
Continue reading "Danube riverboat"
Tuesday, October 3. 2017
Sad about Tom Petty. classic rocker, classic rock. 66. Carpe diem.
Rosetta’s Lost Picture From Moments Before It Struck a Comet
Nobel in Physiology to guys who discovered how biological clocks work
No Inflation? Technology May Have Left it Back in the 20th Century
Why don't we let markets determine rates?
Coyote: Wealth Is The New Normal
Why Is It So Hard To Get Even Smart People To Think Clearly on Electric Vehicle Efficiency?
People love fairy dust
Veterans angry, disappointed following PBS’ Vietnam War documentary
THE PROBLEM WITH CLIMATE CHANGE FANATICISM IN TWO HEADLINES
Analysis says NOAA global temperature data ‘doesn’t constitute a “smoking gun” for global warming’
More than 100 schools sign on to teach health risks of climate change
It's easy to scare the ignorant
Maria, Las Vegas: The Progressive Psychology of Exploiting a Crisis
A crisis is just a political opportunity. If no crisis, make one up
Hillary Clinton slams the GOP and NRA as ´complicit´ in US gun violence after Las Vegas shooting
Democrats Learn That Open Borders Dreamers Will Be A Problem
Yeah. It's never enough. Meanwhile, half the world would come to the US legally, if they could
Professor who critiqued radical feminism accused of promoting ‘violence,’ targeted for termination
No tolerance for "normals"
Speaking of normals, Betsy DeVos vs. the Mindless Mob at Harvard
Video Reveals Allegedly Oppressed NFL Player Michael Bennett as Contemptible Liar
Your House Does Not Need a New Roof at My Expense - The moral and economic issues raised by government flood insurance ought to be obvious.
CBS fires vice president who said Vegas victims didn't deserve sympathy because country music fans 'often are Republican'
Puerto Rico has big problems, but President Trump isn't one of them: Glenn Reynolds
Pew: COVERING PRESIDENT TRUMP IN A POLARIZED MEDIA ENVIRONMENT
Too long to read. Must be a summary somewhere
Hamas Prosecutes Journalist for Exposing Its Corruption in Gaza
Older Vet owns the NFL:
Monday, October 2. 2017
Wave Hill is in Riverdale, Bronx, NYC. Rus in urba. People who rented Wave Hill to live in included Teddy Roosevelt and Mark Twain. Now it is a public garden and event site. We took my in-laws to look around last week.
A few more pics below the fold -
Continue reading "Wave Hill"
Mrs. BD and I are back in weekend hiking mode. I really do not like vigorous hikes when it's above 75 degrees F.
Let's talk about non-winter hiking pants for men and women. Water-repellent, not waterproof. (For waterproof, you can roll up those light-weight REI waterproof overpants in your daypack. With a good long zipper, they are easy to pull over your hiking boots if you are a cat and hate getting wet.)
Hiking and trekking pants are for long hikes with serious terrain, not for two-hour walks in the woods in nice weather when cut-off blue jean are perfect if there are no bugs. I've tested out several pairs of hiking pants. To be comfortable on hills, they have to have a little stretch to them. They also have to resist tears from brush and to be rugged enough to hold up to rock scrapes and random falls. Plus it is nice if they are light-weight, not baggy, and comfortable.
The baggy ones are not pleasant to wear, and flap like crazy in wind. Most of the ones that are convertible to shorts are baggy. I like my Prana hiking pants, which are also great for weekend chores.
Many regular mountain hikers like Montane (example in photo). I guess REI has most of the ordinary things that outdoor active people might need.
What sorts of things do you use for rugged hiking?
Photo: Granny Smiths from a reader's garden this week
A Massachusetts School District Bans Halloween Celebrations
Pushing euthanasia for the depressed
Angry Birds Are Ripping $80,000 Drones Out of the Sky
California's Latest Bad Idea — Outlaw Gas-Powered Cars
NYC offering to pay homeless a year’s worth of rent if they leave town
How Do You Tell The Corrupt Politician From The Non-Corrupt?
Everything (That's Not Sexism) Is Racism
CNN, MSNBC Make Disaster Relief All About “Racism”
Puerto Rico Police Officer Calls Into NY Radio Station – Exposes Corrupt San Juan Mayor, Pleas For Help
Hayward: "The only surprising thing about the total catastrophe in Puerto Rico is that it took so long for the “Trump-Is-A-Bigot-Who-Hates-Brown-People” refrain to get cranked up to eleven..."
The idea that Trump hates brown people is totally nuts. It's meant to scare brown people. Does it work?
Puerto Rican Female Cop Says Local Government Is Preventing Supplies From Getting to People
Schlichter: The Left Hates You. Act Accordingly.
HOW THE ASSOCIATED PRESS SPINS THE SUPREME COURT
Europe: What do Islamic Parties Want?
LIFE WITH NANNY NORWAY - What it's really like to live in a social-democratic "paradise."
The Documentary “The Vietnam War”: Artistic License as History
Bret Stephens: I Believe Some of Your Best Friends Are Jewish
Sunday, October 1. 2017
Reposted, University of Texas at Austin, 2014 Commencement Address, Admiral William H. McRaven
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 12:59 | Comments (4) | Trackbacks (0)
The Wachau Valley mostly refers to the north bank of the Danube in Austria. It is famous for its Rieslings.
Pic from a pal yesterday who is taking a riverboat trip down the Danube to Budapest. Fun trip. Good beer. We did it as a family a few years ago.
Saturday, September 30. 2017
“I was never molested by any person but those who represented the State.”
“If I knew for a certainty that a man was coming to my house with the conscious design of doing me good, I should run for my life.”
Ikea’s stuff is tough to assemble, so it bought a startup to do it for you
What traits tend to turn on women?
Dr. Seuss: Racist
"Hard work" is "whiteness"
That is racist
DR SEUSS IS RACIST, THOMAS THE TANK ENGINE IS SEXIST
Related, MOORE’S LAW OF LIBERALISM IN ACTION
Facing poverty, academics turn to sex work and sleeping in cars
Packers’ Attempt to Involve Fans In Anthem Demonstration Falls Flat, Most Chant ‘USA!’ Instead
Reputation Management CEO: NFL Anthem Protests “The Worst Branding Move in Modern History”
Beyond the daily drama and Twitter battles, Trump begins to alter American life
HILLARY CLINTON IS CAMPAIGNING AGAIN. THAT DOESN'T SEEM LIKE A GOOD IDEA
Jeh Johnson: The 2016 election wasn't hacked
"Yet Another Major Russia Story Falls Apart. Is Skepticism Permissible Yet?"
Steven Crowder’s ‘Undercover in Antifa’ Depicts Premeditated Violence, Disruption, and More
U.S. Cuts Embassy Staff in Cuba, Halts Travel After Attacks
Cuban Doctors: We’re Tired Of Being “Slaves” For Castro’s Communist Regime
A MESSY DIVORCE - The UK’s Brexit Hand Gets Weaker
The racial caste system in Latin America
Five myths about the Vietnam War. No, Viet Cong guerrillas weren’t scrappy underdogs battling inept South Vietnamese forces.
Western contempt for China turns to panic. Economic boom continues with electronics industry domination and infrastructure growth through trillion-dollar Belt and Road Initiative
Armed Soldiers To Replace Cops On Danish Streets