Category Archives: genealogy

snerk…

in other news, i just purchased YakBoy dot net, which was previously owned by some random person in japan, and before that, was owned by my younger (by 10 years) brother, the former co-author of the “Seattle Geekly” podcast, and a registered nurse…

i wonder how long it’s going to be before i receive a “cease and desist” order, or something like that, and have him demand that i return his “intellectual property”… 🤣🤪

i should update this thing again…

the most recent thing is that i have “volunteered” to help make the artwork that is going to be used for this year’s panto: the program cover, poster, postcard and banner. i put “volunteered” in quotation marks because it was presented as a fairly straightforward job that has turned into a nightmare of emails between me and norma, on one side, and leah and the steering committee — who pretty much don’t know what they’re talking about — on the other side… which i would very definitely NOT have “volunteered” for, if i had known about it ahead of time.

it started with me and norma. we, plus mimi, produced the artwork for last year’s panto (to great success, i might add), and we started out to make it largely the same…

then leah got involved. leah is the “publicity manager” this year, and she has very specific — if not outrageously wrong — ideas about how the artwork should appear. leah also set a deadline of october 3rd for all of this to be done, so that i could send it to the printer so that we could have posters and postcards by the first week of october.

on the first round of feedback in which leah was involved (third week of september), one of her “suggestions” was

Remove the Fremont Players website and keep the brown paper tickets (if people google us, they will find our web site)

⁉⁉⁉⁉⁉🤨🤦

she also wanted me to remove the fremont players’ graphic logo, remove the year, reduce the amount of text, and “integrate other stylistic suggestions from the steering committee”, who, like i said before, have NO CLUE what they’re talking about.

so, norma and i ignored about 90% of their suggestions, did what we could to placate leah (including taking the graphic logo off the front of the postcard and putting it on the back, faded behind the text so it’s “not noticible”, and, after a few more “back-and-forths” which didn’t include leah, we came up with what we thought was finished artwork.

meanwhile, on october 1st, leah wrote to me, asking how much it would cost — PER POSTER — to print them. this is a very complex question, which has a different answer based on whether you are using a small, local print shop (like the kind i worked in for 20+ years) or a large, nation wide printing house (like the kind i use these days), and if you are using a large, nation wide printing house, how much posters cost depends on whether you want a small number or a large number.

i tried to explain this to leah, but she was more concerned with the fact that

If I’m reading this correctly, 150 posters cost $210 but 250 posters cost only $40 more and ordering 4000 postcards is $465 but 5000 is $125 cheaper??

to which i responded “that’s right.”

i know, it’s weird, but it’s how large, nation wide printing houses do business, and it appears to work for them. you can’t get different specific-size jobs unless you’re willing to pay more than you would if you get an amount that the printers produce, which is usually more than you want, but “per poster” it comes in WAY cheaper than if you get a different, specific-size job.

so, she approved the artwork on october 2nd, and on october 3rd, she said that i should hold off on contacting the printer, because she wanted to see if it was possible to get an exact size job for a cheaper price.

to which i responded

yes, you can probably get cheaper prices from somewhere else, but keep in mind the quality of the printing i provided last year: posters on 100lb gloss stock, and postcards on 16pt gloss stock with UV coating. i’m pretty sure you’re not going to get anywhere close to the same quality anywhere else, for anything close to the prices i have quoted.

which was ignored… 🤦

a couple of days later, she wrote asking for the high res files, because she had found a “digital printer” (read “photocopy shop”) who would do EXACTLY the size job she wanted for half the price (on much lower quality paper, but she doesn’t know the difference).

so i uploaded them to dropbox, and washed my hands of the whole deal. 😒

it turns out that she had something printed — i still don’t know whether or not she used the correct files (if i had actually been there, and she had shown up with printing from the wrong files, i would have walked out and never gone back… 😒), but my guess is that either she didn’t use the correct files, or she whipped something together in microsoft publisher (or something like that) and used that instead.

then, on october 9th, i get a request for more changes to the postcard. apparently, now, they actually want the date on the front of the card.

i respond by telling maque that they have the high res versions of the artwork, and that they are welcome to make whatever changes they like to the card, BY THEMSELVES, because i am done with this job, and there is a very good likelyhood that i will not be available to “help” again next year, or going forward, because i felt like it was too much work for too little actual gain.

then, yesterday, i get a call from chris huson. he wants to meet me to discuss why i am so upset with the printing process. actually, he SAYS he wants to “discuss further changes” to the postcard, but i nip that in the bud right away.

i explain exactly what i (and mimi and norma) did, and exactly what leah did. i show him emails from leah. i show him the finished artwork — which he says doesn’t look like what leah had printed. i explain about the confusing pricing, and the quality differences, and how none of this seemed to make a difference to leah.

it turns out that leah actually asked chris to take over managing the artwork portion of the job. given what chris already knew about leah, and about the fact that i was upset about the way this whole thing was working out — AND because chris is on the steering committee AND the board of directors, he made the executive decision to take over managing the production of the artwork.

he’s coming over tomorrow to finalise the “already finalised” artwork, to talk about run amounts, and the schedule of when we might have things.

——

from the time i was born until the time i finally escaped my parents’ house, when i was 20 or so, the primary message i received, over and over, was that i was not good enough, that i would never BE good enough, and that, unless i worked VERY hard at “being normal”, nobody would ever like me.

it wasn’t always very subtle, but that was the underlying message, regardless of what i did: they said they were “proud of me” when i won awards, but they refused to do anything to help me win more awards, and shot me down every time i thought i might be able to succeed at doing… pretty much anything…

and when i wasn’t winning awards for playing trombone, or doing magic shows, i didn’t even have a name: i was “the crummy child”. oldest by 6 years of four children, the other three of whom were born two years apart, starting when i was 6, then 8, then 10, when they got old enough to realise what was happening, my siblings called me “the crummy child” as well. when my first younger sister was born, i quickly faded into the background. after that, the only times anybody noticed me was when i was winning awards or when i was getting into trouble.

——

this whole business of working with leah brought all that back in one fell swoop: regardless of how good the art was, it wasn’t good enough. 😠

it has begun to be worked out, now that chris is more involved than he was before, but i’m still quite shaken, and stirred up (at the same time) by this whole fiasco.

genealogy

i got my DNA analysed a few years ago.

a couple months ago, i got rosemary’s DNA (my paternal great aunt) analysed. she has the same father as my great grandfather, but her mother is different than my great grandmother.

i figured that we would have some DNA in common, that we could both use to help determine who is part of our family.

apparently, we have ZERO DNA in common:

no DNA in common?
no DNA in common?

what the fuck?

ETA: it’s because the DNA analysis was done on our mitochondrial DNA, which, while easier to analyse, is passed through our mothers’ side. she had a different mother than my great grandmother, so there’s no overlap.

mystery solved.

so, here’s a question

i wonder to whom i am related. i’ve done a fair amount of genealogical research, and i have a database with a few thousand people to whom i am related in some way or another… and there’s this piece of information, which i figured out when i was just starting out, about 15 years ago:

1             – self
2             – parents – 1 generation ≅ 25 years
4             – grandparents – 2 generations ≅ 50 years
8             – great grandparents           – 3 generations ≅ 75 years
16          – 2x great grandparents    – 4 generations ≅ 100 years
32          – 3x great grandparents    – 5 generations ≅ 125 years
64          – 4x great grandparents    – 6 generations ≅ 150 years
128       – 5x great grandparents    – 7 generations ≅ 175 years
256       – 6x great grandparents    – 8 generations ≅ 200 years
512       – 7x great grandparents    – 9 generations ≅ 225 years
1024    – 8x great grandparents    – 10 generations ≅ 250 years
2048    – 9x great grandparents    – 11 generations ≅ 275 years
4096    – 10x great grandparents – 12 generations ≅ 300 years
8192    – 11x great grandparents – 13 generations ≅ 325 years
16384 – 12x great grandparents – 14 generations ≅ 350 years
32768 – 13x great grandparents – 15 generations ≅ 375 years
65536 – 14x great grandparents – 16 generations ≅ 400 years

according to the research i have done, i’ve traced one thread of my family fabric back to the 1620s, but i’ve only tracked 11 generations, which indicates to me that there was a shorter time between generations, the further back you go, but it’s an accurate number of relatives, even if the number of years isn’t exactly accurate…

but, i think about 65,536 people who had an active part in my creation, despite the fact that they never knew who i am, and probably never knew anybody other than the people two or three generations to either side of them… and i also think about the approximately 7,000,000,000 individuals that currently inhabit the planet, all of whom have the same 65,536 relatives, some of whom are the same people… and 65,536 only goes into 7,000,000,000 approximately 106,812 times…

so the probability is pretty high that you, and i, and everyone else, are related to pretty much everybody, if you go back far enough…

genealogy

President Benjamin Harrison and his wife had a son, Benjamin Harrison II.

Benjamin II and his wife had a son, Benjamin Harrison III.

Benjamin III and his wife had a son, Benjamin Harrison IV.

Benjamin IV and his wife had a son, Benjamin Harrison V.

Benjamin V and his wife had a son, President William Henry Harrison. Benjamin V also had another son, William Henry’s brother, Carter Bassett Harrison.

Carter Bassett Harrison and his wife, Jane Byrd, had a daughter, Caroline Harrison.

Caroline Harrison married William Henry Lawrence, and they had a son, Henry Harrison Lawrence.

Henry Harrison Lawrence married Mary Elen (Molly) Ross, who was the daughter of Samuel Lafayette Ross and Cassandra Kinkaid Slaughter

Samual Lafayette Ross was the son of James Thomas Ross and Sarah (Sally) Cook. James Thomas Ross had another son, Samuel Lafayette’s brother, Alfred Cowan Ross.

Alfred Cowan Ross married Nancy Margaret (Madge) Johnson and had a daughter, Una Perry Ross.

Una Perry Ross married Matthew Shields DeWoody, and they had a daughter, Herma Vera DeWoody.

Herma Vera DeWoody married Albert Augustine Hammond and had a son, who is my father.

so, President Benjamin Harrison is my first-cousin-in-law, 10 times removed…

or something like that…

only on internet… seriously… ONLY on internet.

today i’ve was reading through my RSS feeds, and i came across several references, in widely different publications, about An Open Letter To Bigot Diners by Hajime Sato, sushi chef and owner of the local japanese restaurant Mashiko (and, coincidentally, also owner of Katsu Burger, which is a place i’ve driven by quite often, and wondered what the hell it was…), concerning the presence of caucasian female sushi chefs behind the bar of their authentic japanese restaurant.

being a fairly regular customer of another local japanese restaurant, Maneki, i was interested in reading through his “Open Letter…” and agreed with it wholeheartedly, but that’s not the funny part.

the funny part is that i commented that i didn’t know he also owned Katsu Burger, and then, i noticed a very familiar name on the comment just ahead of mine

i find it very odd that both my father and i would be moved to comment on the same article within three hours of each other, with no other impetus than to voice our agreement with a third person, who neither of us know IRL…

whew!!!

i got my genealogical research back! πŸ˜€

i was looking at the .gramps file… i should have been looking at the .gramps subdirectory of my (backed-up) home directory.

instead of starting up gramps and making a “new” database, what i should have done is moved the old .gramps folder into my new home directory. because of the fact that i started gramps before i knew that, i already had a .gramps directory, so i found the old one and over-wrote the new directory.

of course, once i had the up-to-date version of the database open, i went in and told it where the new location of all my media sources were, and it said “oh, look… correct information… munch munch munch…” and it was back up and running in no time…

AND the new version of gramps has a “Create Backup” option, which saves ALL of the information, so i don’t have to freak out again… πŸ˜‰

the sound still doesn’t work, but i’m on the trail of tracking down a solution, and i’m already futzing around with possibilities for retrieving my email, address book, and rss feeds… things are looking up.

holy crap!

😑

somehow i managed to lose about ¾ of the genealogical research i have done over the past four years or so…

and, yes, i thought that the files that i needed were a part of the backup that i had been making every two weeks for the past four years… apparently they were not… 😐

and i still haven’t got my sound working, in spite of the fact that i reinstalled from scratch…

😑

eric

eric and i were good friends for a long time. we met back when i was seeing kitty, in the early 1980s. i don’t remember exactly what circumstances brought us together, but eric was living in the house of a friend of kitty’s (alan?) and because of the fact that we were both brass players (eric played french horn) and both enjoyed cannabis, we became friends.

later on, eric was playing french horn with kenyth in the stairway (excellent accoustics), and i started playing along with them on my flute, and we liked it so much that it became the Stairway Jam, which is the miscellaneous and ever-changing group of musicians that met and jammed in the stairway (and, later on, elsewhere) for 25 or 30 years, but only performed in public one time — which was the “Free Money Concert” where each of the audience members was payed 10Β’ if they stayed for the entire, 1½ hour performance… we only had to pay one audience member, a fellow named Ken Yanik, who had fallen asleep during the performance. every other audience member (and there were quite a few) left before the concert was finished, and before we revealed how much we were going to pay.

but, eventually, eric met my older-younger sister*, and my sister turned him against me. i don’t know exactly what she said (although i have a pretty good idea), but eric’s behaviour toward me got worse and worse, until there was a major “scene” at the stairway jam one evening, eric left the group for good, and i haven’t seen him since.

that is, until today. i responded to a linkedin request from Amy Denio, a musician whom i have admired for a long time, and while i was responding to that, linkedin suggested that i may also know Eric Barcus… as far as i can tell, this is the same eric as the one to whom i am referring, although i can’t be 100% certain, because the last time i knew for sure, kathryn and eric lived in bellingham, and he wasn’t a computer technician… the problem is that if it is the same eric, any message i send to him is likely to be responded to with the same kind of emotional outburst that i experienced at the stairway jam, these many years previously, and i’m not sure whether i want to experience that or not, regardless of how good a friend eric might have been at one time. UPDATE: nope, it’s not the same guy.

the one thing i do know for sure is that linkedin is getting more and more brash about advertising the fact that they know a lot more about people than the people, themselves, probably realise… 😐

Continue reading eric

wow…

that was TOTALLY unexpected…

and, because of the fact that i promised moe i wouldn’t post it on internet, i can’t say what “it” is…

but, suffice it to say that it was TOTALLY unexpected.

no, my parents didn’t die, and everything is fine (more than just “fine”, actually), but it’s something that is likely to bring about major, positive change in the lives of both me and moe.

interesting…

my father has A TON of cousins. my grandfather had six full sisters and brothers, and one half-sister, and they ALL had children, and their children had children…

the problem is that, because of the fact that my father never took any interest, and my grandfather wasn’t very informative about his family, I know absolutely nothing about any of these people. i’ve managed to trace the family back to warrensburg, missouri, where i figure about one in every three people is related to me in some way or another, but what information i have has been acquired through cunning and skill, and not because somebody told me, or because i grew up with these people.

but the fact is, that my grandfather had a whole bunch of brothers and sisters, and i’ve been cunning and skillful enough (and enough of a computer geek) to make contact with the daughter of one of my great-uncles, which makes her my “first cousin once removed” — i’ll get the hang of figuring out what “removed” means eventually.

because of the fact that my grandfather was closed-mouthed about his family, my father doesn’t even know who she is… people who one used to “grow up with”, back when families were extended and all lived in more-or-less the same community, are now spread out all over the planet, and you can very easily lose track of people, especially when you aren’t paying attention.

wump

Thomas and Minnie Hammondi’m feeling marginally better than i was yesterday, and yesterday i was feeling marginally better than i was the day before that, and so forth, for about a week… which, i suppose, means that i’m getting better, slowly… it’s gotten so i don’t actively feel sick, most of the time, but i still have bouts of coughing that are really annoying because of their unpredictability, and i still get exhausted really easily, which sometimes is accompanied by a bout of coughing, which exhausts me even more.

the dignified-looking people to the right are my great grandparents, Thomas W. and Minnie L. Hammond. i don’t know when the picture was taken exactly, but my guess is that it was some time between minnie’s marriage, in 1906 (she was 16 when she got married) and her death in 1946… and judging by how old she looks, i would guess about 1915 to 1925-ish. but, because of the fact that they were relatives of mine, i can pretty much assure anyone who doesn’t know, that they were very likely not anywhere near as dignified as they look. my general impression is that most of my relatives from that era are all but hillbillies from central missouri (pronounced “missourah”). after minnie died, tom hammond got married to another teenager (when he was almost 70), named Melmalee Clapper, and had another child before he died… so i guess i’m carrying on a family tradition by being married to a woman who is 17 years younger than me, as well as carrying on the family tradition of being the oldest child of a family who wants to have nothing to do with me. πŸ˜› fortunately i’ve got a perfectly wonderful surrogate-family, which has taken over the family duties in a way that my family-of-origin never could.

i won’t have to go in for jury duty on monday, because, according to the jury-duty-check-in-phone-line that i was supposed to call friday evening, “there are no trials scheduled for the month of april”… which, considering that i received the message around april 10th or so, i would have thought that they knew that already, but apparently they don’t. oh well, i guess i don’t get to go in and inform all of the other potential jurors about the right of jury nullification, and disqualify us all from the jury pool… πŸ˜‰

i’ve got a really weird anomaly with my blog: i use a plugin called “Jetpack” that connects my blog to wordpress.org, and gives me stuff like stats for the site, and the ability to short-link to my blog, and stuff like that. there is a number "➊" in a black circle, next to the jetpack link, which, under normal circumstances, means that there is an update to be applied, but i can’t find it anywhere, and there are no other indications that updates are even required, which there usually are if there’s an update that is really supposed to be applied. i can put up with a random "➊" character, but anything outside of what’s normally supposed to happen makes me extremely suspicious.

the week in review

i completed the replacement of the lead pipe on the ugly sousaphone. i have yet to replace the water key, and patch the split third-valve upper tubing, but those things shouldn’t take long at all, and then i will be able to deliver the ugly sousaphone to its rightful owner (thaddeus), who will, then, hand over to me the double B-flat tuba seen here… and i will play the HELL out of it! 8)

i was contacted by a person who claims to be my grandfather’s half-sister… but she’s around the same age as me… and for someone who might not be who she says she is, she certainly has an over abundance of trivial information and unimportant, but entirely, independently verified facts about people who would otherwise be completely unknown, so at this point i tend to agree that she’s probably my grandfather’s half-sister… but, because of the fact that my family is all that’s left of a bunch of massively inbred yokels and hillbillies, she hasn’t cleared up any of the “family mysteries”, and, in fact, has come up with several new ones that will, likely, never be completely understood, because they have to do with my family, who, traditionally, ignores, berates, or tries to shout down anybody (like me) who says that the way they live is not the best. rosemary, my great aunt, is also a child of the ’60s, and has a hippy heart, which is probably why she survived this long without doing the traditional family thing and going crazy.

seriously… there’s a family history going back almost 200 years, of family members getting killed or maimed by insane people, some of whom have also been family members… weird… 😐

the moisture festival has been going well, but i haven’t started playing shows "for real" yet, despite the fact that i have already played 6 shows with two different bands… starting on saturday, i have 12 shows over the course of 8 days, with two different bands, so i’m going to be more than ordinarily busy. until then, i’ve got a rehearsal this evening, and a rehearsal tomorrow evening, and probably a rehearsal either wednesday or thursday.

i got the business cards i made for chris, which look astoundingly good, given the fact that the phone number is deliberately off center… supposedly he’s going to get back to me on a postcard, for which i sent out a preliminary draft on tuesday, and talked with him on wendesday, but haven’t heard anything since. i don’t want to hassle him too much, though, because apart from having a more-or-less full time job, he’s also got a new clinic that he’s in the process of opening up… at the same time, this postcard is “time sensitive” at this point, and i don’t want to wait too long, or i won’t be able to get them printed in time.

weird…

i got a letter in the mail — yes, a physical, hand-written letter — from warrensburg, missouri… which is one of the places i’ve got tons of undiscovered relatives… another place is arbroath, scotland, but that’s another story…

the letter is from a lady who claims that my grandfather is her half-brother…

except, according to the charts i have (which, admittedly, don’t have all the information, because nobody on my side of the family knows any of it), my grandfather didn’t have a half-sister… but she was born after my great-grandmother died… and she’s got several of the right names…

and the part that makes it even more bizarre is that her father is my great-grandfather, but we are only seven years apart in age… her father was 69 when she was born, and lived another 14 years after that.

i can hardly wait to learn more, but i have to curb my enthusiasm… i talked extensively to a person a couple of years ago, who convinced me that she was related to my great-great-grandfather rufus, and then, just as she was about to fill in a whole bunch of missing information in my past, she dropped off the face of the planet, and i have never heard from her again. 😐

ketchup

If you go to the Third World and find 100 people who have never tasted ketchup before, you find out two things: one is that people don’t actually like tomato ketchup, the other is that they dislike all ketchups equally.
     –Rob Young

i downloaded a whole bunch of music from Sharps a burning-man related dub DJ with whom i am related – he’s either my fourth or fifth cousin, either twice or thrice removed… i’m not sure about the particular details, but our shared ancestor is my great-grandfather… or great-great-grandfather, or something like that… i find it somewhat incredible that i am related to so many people, most of whom i don’t know, and that there are other people, some of whom i am related to, who know a lot more about my family, even though they are completely unknown to me, than i do. it’s also good to see that i’ve got relatives who are not my immediate family (who all seem to despise me for not entirely unknown, but entirely unrealistic reasons) who, never the less, have the same predilictions for artistic expression as i do. it is definitely very grounding for me. i keep having to remind myself that i – and everyone else alive – has 1024 great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandparents, and the further you go back in time, the fewer people there are… eventually – and it’s a lot sooner than most people think – you’re bound to run into similar family relationships.

along similar lines, through another guy i met who is from whitecourt, alberta, i got a new pile of information about my mother’s family, and i now have more-or-less confirmed lineage back to the early 1600s, and a “home turf” in st. vigeans and arbroath, scotland. i’m still hoping that someone will come along and give me similar information about my father’s side of the family: i’ve only been able to trace them back to the mid-1800s, and, although possibly the father (or, possibly, grandfather) of the last guy in my current list was originally from “the old country” (whichever one that is), i don’t know anything about him… of course i am one of a long tradition from that part of my family, of oldest-children who have been estranged from their families for one reason or another, on top of the fact that the civil war put extreme pressures on family loyalties, and that part of my family was in the thick of the action on both sides of the conflict – which would mean that there are more-than-likely parts of my family history that were deliberately forgotten over the years.

i’ve been doing a lot of performances with snake suspenderz over the past couple of weeks. we’ve been busking at the ballard sunday market for a while now, and the past couple of weeks we haven’t been busking there, but we’ve made up for it by busking at the wallingford market on wednesday, and the interbay market on thursday… and hobbit and i went and busked at the phinney ridge market on friday last week. the fremont phil did a gig at the fremont outdoor cinema on saturday last week, and we’ve got another gig scheduled for the mobile food rodeo, coming up on the 17th… and the day after that, snake suspenderz is doing two gigs in the same day, at the pike place market and beneroya hall… and i’ve discovered that puyallup has a sunday market, which opens up the possibility of going to ballard in the morning and puyallup in the afternoon… 8)

i’ve also had a surprising amount of hybrid elephant business. i’ve got a button order in the process that’s 500 buttons, plus at least two international orders and at least two more domestic orders over the past few weeks, and another one just came in… but the reciept from paypal hasn’t come in yet, so it may not be a real order… ah, there it is… it’s a real order now… 8)

i knew it!

i’ve got a whole pile of new genealogical information from my fourth cousin, twice removed (a guy named evan, who lives somewhere in canada) to rustle through, the upshot of which is that i now have traced my ancestors back to 1620 or thereabouts, and i have, actually, found the source of the name Dorward who were the “wardens of the door” (i.e. security guards) at Arbroath Abbey, in Arbroath, Fofarshire (Angus) county, Scotland…

as moe said… “woot!” 8)

this is why i don’t subscribe to things like this…

despite my interest in geneaology, i usually don’t just arbitrarily subscribe to things like ancestry dot com and genealogy dot com. however, i have recently subscribed to both of them, because i finally got around to uploading a GEDCOM file of my research (8 generations). almost immediately they send me this message that says i have “hints” about some of the people in my family tree…

my sister, my father, and my grandfather.

i know about these people… i know more than i would like to know, and probably more than they would be comfortable knowing that i know… i know what the “hints” are, and i don’t care

what they didn’t tell me in the “potted meat product that isn’t quite SPAM” was that they also have “hints” for 65 other relatives who are far more removed than my grandfather… such as Otto Tobe Biver, my first cousin twice removed, and Sarah Davisson, my grand aunt of wife of great-great-great grand uncle, and Charles W. Hammond, my great-great-great-great-grandfather…