Tag Archives: pictures

then there was this…

for the past couple of weeks, i’ve seen this…

THING

peering out at me from an otherwise innocent-looking box of generic™ breakfast cereal on the shelf at the grocery store, as i was going about my business…

so i decided to put my photoshop™ The GIMP skills (such as they are) to the task of bringing him out in the open…

240528 - Kellogg's™ EVIL Frosted Mini Wheats
240528 – Kellogg’s™ EVIL Frosted Mini Wheats

it’s actually somewhat surprising how little i had to do to this in order to completely change the character of the entire graphic… a “free select” tool to select just the eyebrows (highly convenient that they are ALREADY on a white background!), “float” to separate them from the main graphic, then clone-stamp to fill in the resulting blank space, a little rotation of each eyebrow, separately, then anchor the floating layer back down, and a little black brush touch-up to the teeth…

i thought about making a stencil-font word “EVIL” in red, rotated slightly, in between the word “Kellogg’s” and the word “Frosted”, but then i realised that doing so would be laying it out for everyone to see, which i don’t necessarily want to do.

if anyone is interested, i have provided a link to the original, unaltered version. view at your peril. 😉

i’m thinking of ways i could just get the “eyebrows” and the teeth printed on clear acetate, so that i could just cover up the face with the more accurate one, and then watch to see how many people freak out, versus how many people don’t even notice… 😈

230511

okay, since the last entry, in reverse order…

today, thaddeus and i busked at the pike place market, under the clock, for an hour, and made $115 a piece… that takes into account the fact that we were amplified (which isn’t normally allowed at the market) and playing on the back of a truck for the “flower festival”, and we were being paid $100 a piece by the PDA to be there… the extra $30 was from tips, because of course we set up our tip bucket, because we were busking at the market. for some reason (probably the fact that he was being paid by the PDA) the busker who was on the stage/truck before us did not have a tip bucket out. 🤷

yesterday, i finished the pea gravel to the west end of the house project that i started earlier in the week. yesterday was also a “category 5” geomagnetic storm, caused by sunspots, which made a “visible” aurora borealis across most of north america, so of course moe and i went out to a “light desert” near salmon la sac, and took pictures. it was the first time i have ever actually seen an aurora… i have PROBABLY “seen” other ones, but they weren’t anywhere near as spectacular, and, significantly, i didn’t have the technology to actually “see” what i was “seeing”: what i saw with my naked eye was lighter grey stripes that were, basically, indistinguishable from clouds, which, very occasionally, had slight hints of colour… but apparently cameras these days take in A LOT more light than our eyes do, and the photos that came out of monique’s phone were phenomenal:

240510 <em>aurora borealis</em>
240510 aurora borealis
240510 aurora borealis
240510 aurora borealis
240510 aurora borealis
240510 aurora borealis
240510 aurora borealis
240510 aurora borealis

thursday was my circus class, wednesday was busking without amplification or the extra $100 a piece — we made a grand total of $6 ($3 a piece), which qualifies as one of the 5 WORST days i have ever had busking at the market. also i cleaned the furnace filters that i forgot to clean on monday. tuesday and monday i started adding pea gravel to the area behind the fence at the west end of our house. monday i forgot to clean the furnace filters.

last sunday was my unicycle class, where i may actually be making some progress, in that i am free-mounting pretty regularly, and i just discovered that if i do it right, i can actually idle, rather than riding away after a free-mount… but everything is still sort of tentative, and i’m not sure whether it’s an actual improvement, or whether i’m just doing fine this week and i’ll go back to not being able to do it next week… which is sort of what i’m expecting. 😒

last saturday was may 4th, which is bongwater day, and world naked gardening day, as well as the more conventional star-wars day. last friday was international tuba day, national paranormal day, and world press-freedom day. last thursday i had my circus class, may 1st (wednesday) we busked at the pike place market, under the clock, with interference from the “pike place drummer” who sets up on the corner opposite the market, so that he is NOT “on market property”, sets up a trap kit and an amplified, pre-recorded MMO tape, and drowns out all other buskers in a three block radius… and we STILL made $20 a piece, which was more than the drummer made. 😉

2024 cannabis update #2

240424 plant #1
240424 plant #1
240424 plant #2
240424 plant #2
240424 plant #3
240424 plant #3
240424 plant #4
240424 plant #4

i’ve been wondering about #2 for about a week… it appears like it’s growing, but it also appears like it’s dying, so i’m not really sure. i keep watering it, and it keeps growing, so there’s still hope. the other three are all doing really well. i’m hoping that this year’s crop will make up for last year’s. 😉

forward, into the past…

i was digging through a box of, mostly, ephemera, that i haven’t actually looked in since before we moved into the house out of which we moved 4 years ago, to move into this house. the reason i haven’t looked in it for 20+ years is because i thought i knew what was in it. while that was largely true, there were a few unknown things in that box which i’ve been wondering about for some time. one of those things was the “secret” taxi-driver’s guide to seattle streets.

this was before cell phones, and before most people had even heard of networked computers, much less internet: this was in the mid-1980s, very few people had cell phones, pay-phones were the common way of communicating outside of your house or office, and taxi drivers HAD TO HAVE a way to remember where everything was…

this was it.

the "secret" guide to seattle streets
the “secret” guide to seattle streets
the "secret" guide to seattle streets
the “secret” guide to seattle streets

this “secret” guide, combined with “The Thomas Guide” map book for king county (colloquially known as the “tommy guide”), pretty much assured that, regardless of how obscure or little-known a street might be, you could get to it without having to ask anyone how to get there.

it had each street name listed alphabetically (or numerically, for numbered streets), and directions for how to get to that street from one other street. if you didn’t know where the one street in the directions was, you looked up that street, and so forth, until you got to a street you know. the “secret” guide also had the number of the map in the tommy guide that included it, so that, if you had a tommy guide (99.8% of cab drivers had one at the time) you could look it up there, as well, but as the tommy guide was a book with A LOT of streets, listed in a not-always-logical order (because it was a map book), i usually didn’t use it. the “secret” guide was more accurate and took up less space. 😉

another thing that the “secret” guide has, which is, maybe, not so useful any longer, is that it has the major bus routes for every street. as far as i know, what we now know as “seattle metro” was a completely different organisation in the mid-’80s, and i sincerely doubt that any of the bus information is reliable these days…

however, streets don’t change that much. fourty years later, much of this “secret” guide is still perfectly usable… a lot of the building names have changed, and things like the kingdome and the alaska way viaduct are no longer there… but it won’t spy on you and steal your data, like google will. 😒

🍄 capsule update

so i’m going to try a smaller dose for the next 100. i’ve learned a little more about how to make capsules more uniform, and i decided to make 200 milligram doses, rather than the (nominally) 250 milligram doses i’ve been taking. a “microdose”, by definition, is “subperceptual”, and, for the most part these are, but every now and then i get a little twinge of psychedelic-ness, and i KNOW that as little as 50 mg will affect my mood, so i figured why not go lower, just to see what happens.

turns out using a sieve to sift the powdered mushroom filters out the pieces that are big enough to cause problems with consistency, and makes it easier to re-powderise the remainder. i was able to get 100 capsules that range from 190 mg to 210 mg, compared to my last 100, unsifted “250 mg” doses, which were anywhere from 190 mg to 270 mg. i’ll take a 20% margin, but 80% is pretty close to unsatisfactory. 😉

i’m still about halfway through the 250 mg doses, but i’ve got the next 100 doses all ready, plus around another ounce or so of powdered mushrooms, and “30 gram” “ounce” of unpowdered mushrooms…

231106 capsule making in progress
231106 capsule making in progress
231106 capsule making results
231106 capsule making results

micro-tuba!! 😎


I BOUGHT A NEW TUBA! 😎

240125 salamandir, frank, and two tuba cases.
240125 salamandir, frank, and two tuba cases.

the bigger of the two is still smaller than the original case i have for it. i bought the new case (on the left side of the photo, to my right) a couple of years ago, because the original case, while still good, was 50 years old, and not as solid as i would like… and it was HUGE!! the new case (shown here) is only about 25% smaller, but it is also brand new, and designed to fit the instrument better… but it’s still big enough that, when i put it in the back of my car, there is NO room to spare on either side… the micro-tuba, on the other hand, is small enough that i’ll be able to fit A WHOLE BUNCH of extra gear when i go to the oregon country fair this year… 😉

240125 salamandir and two tubas
240125 salamandir and two tubas

this shows exactly why the new tuba is needed: it has rotary valves, whereas the big tuba has piston valves, and, despite the fact that it is less than half the physical size of the big tuba, the little one plays in EXACTLY the same pitch. that’s right, other than the physical size of the instrument, there is no other difference!
240125 salamandir holding two tubas
240125 salamandir holding two tubas

yes, it is, in fact, possible for me to hold two tubas at the same time. if i had my other mouthpiece, i could probably PLAY two tubas, but not at the same time, because that would require me to have a ridiculously, and unrealistically, wide mouth. if the micro-tuba was the same size as the other one, i could probably still hold them, but i could definitely not play either one without putting the other one down.

i took it out busking at the pike place market, yesterday, and it sounds EXCELLENT! 👍👍

120502 tuba trio
120502 tuba trio

it may be time for me to revisit this idea… 😉

Professor Peter Schickele, head of the Department of Musical Pathology at the University of Southern North Dakota at Hoople

Professor Peter Schickele, head of the Department of Musical Pathology at the University of Southern North Dakota at Hoople, died yesterday, at the age of 88.

230117 The Art of The Ground Round, score by P.D.Q. Bach, autographed by Prof. Peter Schickele
230117 The Art of The Ground Round, score by P.D.Q. Bach, autographed by Prof. Peter Schickele
in 1977, or thereabouts (it was prior to my 18th birthday) the northwest chamber ensemble, or some group like it, gave a concert of music by P.D.Q. Bach, who was the composer whose music was the particular area of study of Professor Peter Schickele. they gave a party at some fancy bar/restaurant on the waterfront in downtown seattle, along with a scheduled “P.D.Q. Bach Compose-A-Like” contest, and Professor Peter Schickele was the guest of honour, and the judge of the aforementioned contest. i had been a fan of professor peter schickele for many years, i owned all of his albums (i think there were 4, at the time), and his book, along with the scores for many of P.D.Q.’s musical works, such as The Art of The Ground Round, and The Seasonings, and i was an AVID composer of… some might say “bizarre” music… however, at age 17, i was simply too young to get into a 21-and-older bar. however, i had a plan: a friend of my father’s was a member of the northwest chamber ensemble, and he got me into the bar with no questions about my age, where i entered a composition of my own, for left-handed sewer-flute and electronic tape. i actually made a left-handed sewer-flute, which had a faucet at the bottom, and part of the performance was opening the faucet, whereupon water would drain out of the extraneous tubing behind the head-joint cork. the performance went about as AWFULLY as any performance i have ever done, everything that could go wrong, did go wrong, with the exception of the water draining out of the faucet, which couldn’t have gone wrong because there was, literally, no place else for it to go, i actually only played about 4 notes on the “flute” part, the tape playback machine refused to work, and then it only worked intermittently… and yet, somehow, i won first prize in the contest. and the first prize was two tickets to the concert. the guy that won second prize had actually composed a legitimate, classical-style string quartet, in three movements. the second prize was a “genuine” P.D.Q. Bach “water-powered turntable”, which was a lawn sprinkler with a record platten attached to it with zip-ties. i got professor peter schickele’s autograph on several of the scores that are still in my possession.

he will definitely be missed. 😢

misc. update-ish

i ordered some jewelry from an artist in poland. i’ve been tracking it for a month, now. from poland, it spent almost two weeks undergoing microscopic scrutiny in customs, in florida, and then it took another week to get from florida to kent, washington (which is right down the road from where i live)… but, after spending a full 48 hours, plus, in kent, it suddenly, this morning, makes a leap to juneau, alaska, where it is currently “preparing for delivery”… 😒 if it’s anything like the recent shipments i’ve gotten from germany, the united kingdom, or portugal, it will be delivered today, in my residential mailbox, with no further explanation for why it was reported to be in alaska, but, as this delivery is “registered mail” (because of the fact that it’s jewelry), i’m probably going to have to sign for it, rather than having them just leave it in the box.

the postal delivery person just came and went, with no registered package from poland, so i guess it HAS gone to juneau, and who knows when i’ll be seeing it. 🙄

i’ve settled down to microdosing every other day, which seems to be working A LOT better than the commercially available (legal) alternatives that i have tried (buproprion), but i’m getting frustrated again, because either, i feel “okay” (in that i do not feel as frustrated or depressed), or i feel frustrated and/or depressed about stuff that has been there, is there now, and will be there tomorrow and into the future, regardless of whether or not i am taking medication of any kind. it’s frustrating to have to be taking a microdose to feel better, rather than being able to do something constructive to rid myself of the factors which cause the frustration and depression to begin with, but which are not possible, because they require things like killing tens of thousands of #drumpf-cultists and/or making major changes in society as a whole… which is exacerbated by the knowledge that if i were taking 2.5 grams, instead of .25 grams, things would be a lot more different. i call mushrooms my “don’t give a fuck pill”, but i guess i should call the microdoses my “give a little bit less of a fuck pill”, which, i’m not totally sure, is the point.

in the upcoming 49 days, i have 25 panto-related obligations, including 18 performances and 7 rehearsals, starting next monday. wolfenoot is thursday (as is thanksgiving), when our friends from hawaii are coming for dinner (but, significantly, NOT my mother-in-law), and, on friday, moe and i, and our friends from hawaii, are all going to go get tattooed: a few years ago, pre-COVID, we rented a house on the beach, and invited a whole bunch of friends to come and visit. the only people that ended up being able to come were micah and shaya, our friends from hawaii. we spent a week in a VERY large house, under the influence of a fantastic amount of trendy chemical amusement aid, flying kites and playing board (bored?) games, which included a “boys-against-girls” round of pictionary, in which the girls won with monique’s drawing which has come to be known as “snake-camel”… so, on friday, we’re all going to get a tattoo of “snake-camel”… which looks like this:

231028 snake-camel
231028 snake-camel

the panto this year is a re-visitation of one of our previous pantos, “Red Riding Hood and The Three Little Pigs”. we’ve got 7 rehearsals scheduled during the next two weeks, including one band-only rehearsal. marni, the flute/alto-sax player that moved to england just before the pandemic, is back, and she was the “purple” member of the group, so i don’t know how the fact that i have sort of taken over that position is going to play out. rehearsal season, this year, has been decidedly abbreviated and condensed, and i’m not sure whether or not that is a good thing.

the change

i harvested the third of my three plants on wednesday. today i cleared out the grow tent, moved the clones to the shed (as compared to the grow tent), took the grow tent apart and got the critical parts ready for cleaning, which i’m sure they’re going to need, considering that the previous crop got pretty moldy, and the more current crop was developing a case of spider mites, which APPEAR to have been thwarted by liberal application of diatomateous earth. i am considering insulating the shed, which really wouldn’t be that difficult, and it would give my current clones a better chance at survival… although, at this point, they seem to be doing pretty well, in spite of the diatomateous earth.

231027 the change
231027 the change
it’s amazing to me how much space the grow tent tool up… which gets my mind to thinking of a way to put it on its side, on top of one of the shelves… possibly use it for starts, or something…

SNARGGHL!!

there are a bunch of campaign signs that have sprouted up through the area, recently, including this one:

231002 "FEWER" NOT "LESS"!!! 🤬
231002 “FEWER” NOT “LESS”!!! 🤬

knowing NOTHING ELSE about these candidates, i would not be inclined to vote for them PRIMARILY because of their ungrammatical use of the word “LESS”… 😒

but BECAUSE OF THE FACT that they (or, more likely, some over-zealous zombie sign maniac) chose to post their sign RIGHT ACROSS THE STREET from a MIDDLE SCHOOL:

231002 Summit Trails Middle School
231002 Summit Trails Middle School

i really start to wonder… obviously they DON’T care about children, despite what their other signs might proclaim, because instead of leading them in education, they are lambasting them with ungrammatical twaddle… and they really MUST NOT have thought about it very much, because the people who are the most likely to see this humongous sign are middle school students who aren’t old enough to vote… 🤣

i want to “correct” it… 😈

231002 SEE ME AFTER CLASS!
231002 SEE ME AFTER CLASS!

harvest season?

because of the weirdness surrounding the three cannabis plants i’ve been growing this year, i harvested two of them — the two that “re-vegetated” and spent time in the grow tent — because 1) they were as ready as i expect they’re going to be, and 2) the two that lived in the tent turned out to be mutant plants the likes of which i have never seen before…

230930 mutant plant
230930 mutant plant

these “leaves” were coming directly out of the stem of the plant. there was no bud structure, and no leaf stem… really bizarre, and really common on this plant.

230930 mutant plant
230930 mutant plant
230930 mutant plant
230930 mutant plant

are these male buds, or female buds? i think they’re female, because, in spite of the seed-pods, there don’t appear to be any seeds… but…? who knows? 🤷

230930 yummy bud!
230930 yummy bud!

in spite of all the weirdness, i have some AMAZING buds, plus i’ve got one more plant that is still about a month away from harvest, which is looking REALLY good, AND there are two clones, one of which took off about three weeks ago and is now almost two feet tall, and the other which just took off a couple days ago, which is actually the older of the two, but it has been sitting, not dying and not taking off, for about two months.

i wish there was a “miscellaneous symbols and pictographs” entry that was a cannabis leaf, but i guess i’m out of luck…

so, before i moved them out of the tent, my two inside plants looked like this, so i wasn’t too worried about what sex they were…

2023-08-2 plants in the grow tent
2023-08-2 plants in the grow tent

but, as you may recall, when i moved them out of the tent, i encountered SIGNIFICANT mold on the underside of the plant that is on the left, in the picture above. i propped it up, and trimmed off almost all of the mold — i am still fighting mold on this one plant, as of yesterday… i think i’ve gotten it all, and then another patch of it crops up… 😒 and i’ve also propped up the outdoor plant, as well, but that is only because it is spreading out wider than the space that i’ve got all three of them growing in, now, and not because it really NEEDS propping up. 😉

now that i’ve got my lights a little more under control, i think i can see why some people who grow LOTS of weed like “re-vegetating”, because it appears to create MASSIVE buds

2023-09-08 and they've got another month to go!
2023-09-08 and they’ve got another month to go!
2023-09-08 and they've got another month to go!
2023-09-08 and they’ve got another month to go!

but re-vegetating also produces THE WEIRDEST mutations i have ever seen:

2023-09-08 weird mutant plantoids!
2023-09-08 weird mutant plantoids!
2023-09-08 weird mutant plantoids!
2023-09-08 weird mutant plantoids!
2023-09-08 weird mutant plantoids!
2023-09-08 weird mutant plantoids!

it still astounds me that it is legal! 🤯

2023-09-08 three adult plants
2023-09-08 three adult plants

another weird thing that has happened to me is that my medical cannabis authorisation needs renewing , as it does every year — as if, one day, i’m suddenly NOT going to have a brain injury… 🙄 — and so i texted dr. peterson, like i have for 6 years in a row at this time… but this time he didn’t respond. he retired a couple of years ago, but he kept issuing cannabis authorisations because he liked the money or something, probably… and he’s gotten more flaky as the years have gone by, but usually he responds… but not this time. so i called Marley 420, which is the medical dispensary i frequent, and asked them for a recommendation, and they pointed me towards a place in covington, but it turns out that they don’t do authorisations for people who have bipolar in their medical charts, and they recommended this guy in vancouver, washington. but i figured there had to be someone closer than that, plus i’ve had some rather unpleasant experiences with long-distance telehealth

a doctor in georgia, dr. olajumoke akinyele, who was responsible for my buproprion prescription, initially: she prescribed too much and i went through a week of, essentially, “overdosing” on a drug that made me nervous, twitchy, anxious, restless, short-tempered, unpleasant-to-be-around, caused massive tinnitus, etc., etc., before she got around to changing the dose, and when i asked her about psilocybin, she didn’t know what i was talking about and said that it would be too much like taking cocaine or heroin. 😒

so i asked my counselor, kate, if she had any recommendations. she said to contact dr. j, who didn’t do cannabis authorisations, but recommended i go to Green Leaf Health Care (😉) and, it turns out, that the doctor at green leaf, dr. mcdonald, is the guy who gave me my first medical authorisation, back in 2013. 🤣

weird coincidence? or part of my karass?

this is a picture of my kindergarten class. i am second from the right, in the second row.

1966 Mrs. Peace and my kindergarten class
1966 Mrs. Peace and my kindergarten class

interestingly enough, this was at marvista elementary school, in normandy park, in 1966. another of my friends, smerdyakov karamazov was also at marvista in 1966, but he was in the second grade, and i didn’t know him at the time… 😵 (that’s a “dizzy face”, in case it isn’t obvious)

Shirley Day Peace
Shirley Day Peace
but the real point of this whole study is the teacher, Mrs. Peace — her name was Shirley, but i didn’t find that out until much later. the reason i found out her first name is because, about 20 years or so ago, moe started hanging around with another local dog trainer, named ali. she was always coming home talking about something ali had done, or had not done, that was really interesting, ali having surgery, ali living her life, that sort of thing. i paid attention, but it was all from a distance, because i had never met ali, and didn’t know her… until one day, moe happened to mention ali’s last name…

peace…

peace is not a particularly common name, so immediately, i asked if she was related to mrs. peace, my kindergarten teacher.

the answer is yes.

ali peace is the granddaughter of shirley peace. shirley died earlier this year, at the age of 98. unfortunately, i wasn’t able to find out if she remembered me, but…

ali peace and a dog
ali peace and a dog

this woman, who i have now met, who is a frequent guest at our house, who has been a friend and colleague of moe’s for 20-plus years, is the granddaughter of my kindergarten teacher… 🤯

sigh… 🙄

230729 re-vegetation
230729 re-vegetation
two of my three outdoor plants are “re-vegetating”… what this means, apparently, is that the plants were triggered to start flowering much earlier than they should have been, and when i moved them outdoors last month, they decided that, instead of continuing with the production of buds, they had to go back to vegetative growth, which causes the little bud-lets to develop into sort-of fan leaves… but they’re smooth, instead of serrated, and they only have one finger, instead of the characteristic five or seven fingers…
230729 re-vegetation
230729 re-vegetation

this is frustrating, because outdoor plants shouldn’t re-vegetate, and, if i allow them to continue, then they won’t be flowering by the middle of next month, like they should, which means that there won’t be any buds this fall. 😢

so, i bought a light-proof grow tent, to force them back into flowering…

230807 light-proof grow tent
230807 light-proof grow tent
i don’t really understand why all three of my plants aren’t re-vegetating. they were all started at the same time, and they all moved outdoors at the same time, which should mean that they all got the same “trigger”, but only two of them were affected… and, when it comes time to move them inside, it will be that much easier, because two of them are already inside, with a 12-hour light cycle.

i wouldn’t worry about the grow tent, but i cloned one of the plants, and it’s currently inside, under a 24-hour vegetative light, and if i didn’t have the grow tent then i would have to kill the clone, or the mature plants would continue to be confused — and confused plants are more likely to become hermaphroditic, and we DON’T want that.

although, if it DOES happen, getting a bunch of feminised seeds instead of buds, would not be ENTIRELY awful…

there’s still a chance that i’m going to have to kill the clone, but it’s a lot less likely now that i have a grow-tent, because, when the other plant has to move inside, i can just switch the lights, and move the clone into the tent to keep it from getting confused.

immediatly post-OCF

microdosing the fair was successful beyond my wildest imaginations!! i took a .25 gram capsule, every morning at 0700 or so, so if i were to have some kind of major psychedelic effects manifest, i would probably be over them by 1100, which was when our “call” was, every day.

i was actually able to relax(!), and have a good time(!!), despite the fact that i avoided the ritz, because of COVID concerns (mine, not theirs)… however, i will say that being, literally, right across the path from a place that makes mac and cheese with smoked salmon in ENORMOUS bowls didn’t hurt anything. 😉

AND i experienced at least two occasions where, absent the .25 gram dose, i would have been SIGNIFICANTLY more cranky and disagreeable afterwards. the first was yesterday, when the guitar player (chris gross) and i conspired to take a cart full of gear to our respective cars, because having two people drag a cart is infinitely easier than having to either drag it yourself, or having to wait, sometimes as much as an hour, for the cart to return… so we loaded up a bunch of gear that we were no longer using, and schlepped it out to the “SCOFlot”, where the “handicapped” people (and marginally-handicapped people, such as myself, who have a valid placard 😈) are allowed to park… only to discover that i had left my key-fob back in camp, three quarters of a mile away… so, i trudged back to camp and retrieved my key-fob, and we unloaded my gear into my car, but in our original schlepp-age, one of the cart’s tires had bit the dust, and we got about halfway to chris’s car when the inner-tube got wrapped around the axle, and ceased moving forward… so we spent 15 minutes untangling the inner-tube and schlepped another quarter mile out to chris’s car. chris unloaded his stuff, only to discover that he had left his guitar back in camp! 🤣 so we went back to camp AGAIN… the second was this morning. naturally, after a glorious, sun-shiney weekend, it rained monday morning, which meant that i had to put the tent away wet. i got everything packed up and moved out to the staging area (on the stage), and slogged out to retrieve my car, but when i got there, i couldn’t get the key-fob to work… like, AT ALL!… and it’s a new enough car that i haven’t poked around and actually FOUND the manual key slot… my comment (to no one in particular) was that it sucks AND blows: all things a good vacuum cleaner should do. 🤣 i phoned moe (thank cthulhu i had cell service) and she gave me some suggestions, and said she would look up a youtube video for me… and then i got the key-fob to work, ONCE, which was all it took… i was able to start the car by holding the key-fob up to the start button, and i was on my way… but when i got to camp, “somebody” (not a part of our group) had parked an ENORMOUS camper, with an ENORMOUS trailer, directly across the opening to our stage/staging area, blocking three cars IN and making it impossible for me to park remotely close to the stage. i started carrying a load of stuff around the camper-trailer-conflagration and i ran into (literally) someone who was helping a kid into the truck, and i asked them how long they were planning on staying there, to which they responded five minutes… fifteen minutes later, they were STILL there, so i got someone from our group to help me move the big, heavy, bulky power cart to a place where it blocked the camper, and went back to loading. 😈

the guy eventually left (after struggling to move the power cart by himself 😈), and i was able to pull in next to the stage, but when i shut my car off, the key-fob stopped working AGAIN, only, this time, because i was already in the car, i was able to get it started again, but it was only after i was in the car, ready to go, and the car said “key-fob not present” that i realised that it was the battery in the key-fob, and not something more serious… and, when i got home, i took the fob apart and replaced the battery. 😎

the panto is a re-run of one we did a few years ago, “Red Riding Hood and The Three Little Pigs”, and it was together, with no missed cues from either the band OR the actors in record time: by the second day, we pretty much had it down, and the actors were starting to modify the script in ways that will be reflected in the productions this winter.

230706 some random hippie
230706 some random hippie
230707 some random hippie
230707 some random hippie
230708 some random hippie
230708 some random hippie
230709 some random hippie
230709 some random hippie

also,

230709 simon neale
230709 simon neale

and,

230708
230708
230708 i invited her to morningwood odditorium, where we had been pasting googly eyes on everything, but she never showed up
230708 i invited her to morningwood odditorium, where we had been pasting googly eyes on everything, but she never showed up
230709 i asked him if he was the Muffin Man, and he said no, he's a cupcake
230709 i asked him if he was the Muffin Man, and he said no, he’s a cupcake, so i had to mention the line from the frank zappa song about the muffin man: “some people like cupcakes better. i, for one, care less for them.” 🤣 he said he had heard that a few times.

finally,

salamandir and harmonic flute, and sam and fujara

immenently pre-OCF

interesting, informative and educational blurb about the difference between “imminent” and “eminent” goes here.

july 4th (🤢) today. we’re planning on taking a drive in the back country, rather as we did last year at this time, when we came down with COVID. this year, we’ve already got the COVID out of the way, so i have every intention to leave for OCF around 08:00 tomorrow. as i did last year, with some creative ingenuity, i fit everything EXCEPT my foghorn* into the car, so the only things i have to do tomorrow is take a shower, put the stuff from the fridge into the cooler, put freezer-blocks into the cooler, and put the cooler, and the 5 gallon water bottle, into the car, and gather a few, small items — my soap and foot ointment, my tablet, my reading glasses, my phone, my weed, pipes, and vape supplies — into their assigned boxes, and then i can leave. moe doesn’t have to be in to the clinic tommorrow until 10:00, so there’s a chance that i’ll be gone before she gets out of bed… at least i hope so, because she works WAY too hard, and doesn’t take time off as frequently as she should.

230702 salamandir in a kayak
230702 salamandir in a kayak

in the past week, we have gone from having NO boats, to having TWO boats (kayaks), three paddles, PFDs for one human and one dog, and the roof support rack (with “all the trimmings”) to carry one kayak… the other (smaller) kayak needs some foam pads to carry on the roof, because it is short enough that it doesn’t fit… but that’s okay, because it means that i can carry it on the top of MY car, as well as moe’s… this morning, moe took the larger boat out on rattlesnake lake, with the “puppy”, quill (who is now the largest of our three dogs 😒), and he only fell in once (🤣) before he decided that he was going to sit in the center of the boat and be a good doggie…

230703 moe and quill in a kayak in the pond across the street
230703 moe and quill in a kayak in the pond across the street
230704 quill being a good doggie on rattlesnake lake
230704 quill being a good doggie on rattlesnake lake

how we made the journey so quickly has to do with moe’s boss giving us the smaller kayak and paddle, and moe developing an insistent obsession. 😉 i know that goat island has a web site, now, but it seems like everywhere has a web site, so it’s not as surprising as it once was. it makes me wonder what’s happening in what used to be fishtown, these days.

after OCF…

* i have wanted to take the foghorn to OCF for a few years, but i have never been able to fit it into my car, with all the other stuff i have to take to OCF… but, it’s probably a good thing, because i think that it would annoy a lot more people than it would amuse… oh well…

campbell global

we went to the Campbell Global Snoqualmie Tree Farm today, pretty much square in the middle of the humungously vast, unpopulated area surrounded by skykomish, grotto, baring, halford, index, big bend, gold bar, startup, sultan, woods creek, monroe, high rock, duvall, novelty, lake marcell, stillwater, carnation, pleasant hill, fall city, snoqualmie, north bend, riverbend, tanner, ragnar, and garcia. we walked 4.5 miles, 2.25 up and 2.25 down from approximately here (which is where we parked the car), we left home at 0830 and arrived back around 1500. we saw things like this:

230601 campbell global snoqualmie tree farm
230601 campbell global snoqualmie tree farm
230601 campbell global snoqualmie tree farm
230601 campbell global snoqualmie tree farm
230601 campbell global snoqualmie tree farm
230601 campbell global snoqualmie tree farm

as i frequently do when i am hiking in the deep forest, i picked up and packed out litter. one piece of litter i picked up was a rainier beer can that was before they introduced the integrated opening tab (i.e. it had a separate opening tab that would cut your feet if it was encountered barefoot), but after they started marketing “all aluminum recyclable cans!” which, i would guess, places it somewhere between 1970 and 1974… far away from pretty much anything that one might consider “civilized” by any stretch of the imagination, and i find litter from when i was a teenager. 😒

230601 40-year-old litter
230601 40-year-old litter
230601 40-year-old "PLEASE DO NOT LITTER" litter
230601 40-year-old “PLEASE DO NOT LITTER” litter
230601 40-year-old "All Aluminum Recyclable Can" litter
230601 40-year-old “All Aluminum Recyclable Can” litter

pig-tures

apparently ezra has been talking to my father recently.

ezra texted me to say that my father had given him two photo albums that contain mostly pictures of me…

the fact that my father gave them to ezra, and not to me, is one of the reasons i haven’t talked to my father in a very long time, now. 😒

salamandir, age 12-14
salamandir, age 12-14

i believe this picture was taken between 1972 and 1974, and i believe it was taken in new york, before we moved back to seattle… i may be wrong, but the seamless backdrop was something that my father didn’t have room to set up more than a few times, and i don’t remember seeing it after we moved, but that could just be my swiss-cheese brain at work. the closer it was taken to 1972, the more “brand new” the trombone was…

of course, the original photo may have a date on the back, but because of the fact that i have COVID, currently, i can’t rush over to ezra’s place to look. 😒

salamandir, age 62
salamandir, age 62

this was taken on 221024 by someone at the fisher pavilion who wanted a picture of me, and i liked it so much that i asked for a copy of it. this is my current Ballard Sedentary Sousa Band uniform, and i was at the fisher pavilion to play for Festa Italiana, like we do every year… the coat is a new acquisition that i bought at a “purge-o-rama” sale at a costume shop in redmond. i have been looking at that, exact coat, in the display window of the costume shop, ever since i worked in redmond (in 1995 or thereabouts), and i finally went in because i had heard that the shop was closing (it’s not, they’re just moving to a new location… one without display windows), only to discover that they wanted $300 for it, but because of the fact that they were having a “purge-o-rama” sale to prepare for the move, they had reduced the price to $100… so i bought it immediately.

prior to that, i wore a uniform that i got from working for the Floating World Circus, after i graduated from high school. it was also red, but a lot it was also a lot more “normal” for a band uniform…

salamandir parade ?1991
salamandir parade ?1991

this picture, i believe, was taken in 1991, in anacortes, where the band that i was playing in at the time was playing for a parade.

the astute observer will immediately realise that the trombone depicted in all of these photos, is exactly the same. 😉

new art!

230520 actual art for a change!
230520 actual art for a change!
230520 actual art for a change!
230520 actual art for a change!

actual art… actually created… by me! 👍 incredible!

okay, they’re modeled after photographs, which i used as reference, but the artwork is not the photographs.

it’s amazing! 😎

what makes it even more amazing is that i created it on my tablet, with a stylus, the same as i would on paper, except that i can actually FIX wobbly lines, accidental brush strokes, and that sort of thing, WITHOUT having to start over from scratch…

and i can make animated gifs, as an added bonus… 😉

230520 actual art for a change!
230520 actual art for a change!

this may just be enough to start my sketchbook again… wouldn’t that be something?

<sigh>… okay, i’ll update… 😒

we went to the campbell global snoqualmie tree farm, this morning, ostensibly to exercise dogs, but an ulterior motive was to scope out the “firewood” area, which is adjacent to the active logging, but they have logs pulled to the road and stacked, so that (if you’ve got a permit) you can go up there with a chainsaw and lop off firewood-length pieces, put them in your truck, and drive home without having to pay for it… thing is, the permit costs $300, which is about the same as a cord of firewood, but (if you’ve got a permit), you’re allowed to take up to 5 cords of firewood… plus, there’s literally 90,000 acres of trails that NOBODY else hikes on, because you’ve got to have a permit and a key… and, guess what? moe bought a permit when they went on sale, which is a little surprising because the permits sold out within a half-hour of going on sale… oh, and we have a pickup truck now… did i mention that before? we’ve had a ford f150 pickup truck for a little more than a year. it doesn’t get used for much — picking up loads of gravel, wood chips, or, soon, firewood (still got to wrassle up a chainsaw) — but it gets loaned to a whole bunch of different friends who need a truck for this or that…

230513 campbell-global snoqualmie tree farm
230513 campbell-global snoqualmie tree farm

i wrote to the newest member of the IOTM club last week, both from my hybridelephant.com account, and from my new hybrid elephant gmail account (because i’ve been having trouble with email, which is another story), and i have gotten no response, which makes me REALLY suspicious about this subscription… but, at this point, there’s absolutely nothing i can do about it, except to cancel the subscription and refund their money… which, at this point, is a little extreme, since, basically, the ONLY thing they’ve done is make me suspicious… but they’ve made me suspicious, which is very suspicious, and i really feel like there should be more than i can do to alleviate my suspicion.

the email thing is starting to grate on my nerves… fundamentally, there is NOTHING “wrong” with my email, but because of the fact that it doesn’t (by design) go through one of the “big guys” (i.e. micro$lut, yahoo, google, apple, etc.) i am finding that more and more services are either silently blocking my email, or producing more and more convoluted hoops that i have to jump through to get my email to… the people i do business with, my customers, suppliers, etc… 😒 at this point, i’ve gone back and forth with micro$lop so many times that my host provider is no longer willing to fight with them on my behalf, and has recommended that i route my mail through google or micro$hit to solve the problem… but i don’t see why i should have to pay — especially, i don’t see why i should have to pay micro$not — to solve a problem that micro$hite is causing to begin with. at this point, when i suspect that there may be a problem (like when a customer has an address @hotmail.com or @live.com, or something like that), i send them a response from my hybridelephant.com account, and if i think it may have been “interfered with” in some way, then i send them another response from my gmail account, which usually does the trick. but it’s grating on my nerves because it SHOULDN’T be this way, and i SHOULDN’T have to worry about whether or not my emails have gone through… it’s not like i’m running an open relay, or something like that, i’m just not willing to send my email through one of “the big guys” because, to be quite frank, i don’t trust “the big guys”… and it’s behaviour like i have seen from micro$leaze that causes me not to trust them. 😠

i guess that settles that…

i guess i’m a hindu, now…

i guess there was some doubt, considering that i don’t believe in “god”, in the sense of the word recognised by most people… even other hindus… not to mention the fact that i was born in peoria, which is nowhere near the indus river, and “technically” to be a “hindu” means being born on the indian subcontinent, south of the indus river…

Hindus subscribe to a diversity of ideas on spirituality and traditions, but have no ecclesiastical order, no unquestionable religious authorities, no governing body, nor a single founding prophet; Hindus can choose to be polytheistic, pantheistic, monotheistic, monistic, agnostic, atheistic or humanist. Because of the wide range of traditions and ideas covered by the term Hinduism, arriving at a comprehensive definition is difficult. The religion “defies our desire to define and categorize it”. A Hindu may, by his or her choice, draw upon ideas of other Indian or non-Indian religious thought as a resource, follow or evolve his or her personal beliefs, and still identify as a Hindu.

but i got something in the mail, today, that proves, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that there is SOMETHING in me that recognises hinduism as the right spiritual path for me, and i didn’t realise it until i looked it up, when i got the object, this afternoon.

the object i got was a stone. specifically, it is a red “sonbhadara shila”, which, like the shivalingam is the stone that represents shiva, and the shaligram shila is the stone that represents visnu, the sonbhadara represents ganesha, and when it is combined with four other stones, which represent other deities, they become the object of worship for “panchayatana puja“, which was introduced by adi shankara as a way to stop people from fighting over which deity is supreme, but it is apparently a lot older than shankara…

but it’s just one stone, right? how could a hunk of rock make the determination for me that i am a hindu, beyond a shadow of a doubt?… i hear you ask…

the reason is because, without realising it, over the past 40+ years, i have been collecting interesting rocks and crystals, and, again, without realising it, i have now amassed ALL FIVE STONES… the red sonbhadara was the last of them! 😉

230418 Panchayatana puja
230418 Panchayatana puja

the stones, and their corresponding deities, are: shivalingam represents shiva, pyrite, or “swarnamukhi” (स्वर्णामुखी – “golden face”) represents shakti (parvati, devi, or ambika), sphatik or quartz crystal represents surya, shaligram represents visnu, and sonbhadara represents ganesha.

i’m only about 90% certain that the black stone is, in fact, a shaligram. it came, carved that way, as part of a lingam and yoni set that i purchased from india, a number of years ago, and the stone was immediately replaced with a different lingam… however, i learned (again, today) that sometimes shaligrama are carved into lingam-shapes, and the stone doesn’t really resemble a shivalingam, otherwise, however it DOES resemble a shaligram… and, technically, the sphatik is supposed to come from the vallam river in tamil nadu, and the pyrite is supposed to come from the swarnamukhi river in andhra pradesh, and i’m fairly sure that mine don’t, but, from my standpoint, quartz is quartz, and pyrite is pyrite, regardless of where it’s from.

so, i guess that means i’m a for-real hindu now. 😉

also, i got some new, obscure incense: silver oud and mysore sandal, made by <insert fanfare here> shroff channabasappa and company! the company i thought was out of business, but apparently is going… well, not as strong as they once were, but going, none the less… WOO! 👍

moist

gearing up for the moisture festival (starts march 23, i play one show on the 23rd, and then two shows per day on the 24th, 25th, and 26th), AND one of my favourite costume shops is having a “purge-o-rama sale”, in preparation for moving to a new location… so…

230320 - rainbow sequins
230320 – rainbow sequins

😉

SCHENECTADY???

i ordered a CD from france. it’s Sergei Prokofiev’s “Peter and The Wolf”, performed by the Scottish National Orchestra, conducted by Neeme Järvi, with Lina Prokofiev as the narrator.

in my opinion, the only better performance is the one in which Victor Borge is the narrator, but i’ve already got that one.

i’ve been tracking the package (as i often do, particularly when they are from places other than the united stoats), and, according to the web site, it should be out for delivery, today…

in schenectady?????

230317 - SCHENECTADY???
230317 – SCHENECTADY???

🤯

this is the kind of thing i would have gotten in trouble for, when i was younger…

i really want to go exploring in the cedar river watershed.

the place that is surrounded by a fence, with big, dire warning signs that say “NO TRESPASSING – $10,000 FINE!”…

200828 the watershed
200828 the watershed, photo by The Prophet Ian

but, the thing is, there are a couple of “communities” near my house which i really want to go and visit: Trude, and Snoose Junction. if you plug those names into google maps, they exist, and if you plug in your home location, it gives you directions for how to get there.

directions to Trude
directions to Trude

and in the case of Snoose Junction, it gives me two alternate ways to get there!
directions to Snoose Junction
directions to Snoose Junction

alternate directions to Snoose Junction
alternate directions to Snoose Junction

i know there aren’t people living there… legally, anyway… i do know that there are some hold-outs who live on the outskirts of society, who probably live in the watershed illegally, but the state frowns on such things, and i would think that the location of an actual community, even a defunct one, is probably one of the last places such people would choose to live, because of that…

if they don’t want people going there, then why are those places even listed on the map? why does it give precise, turn-by-turn directions for how to get there, if nobody is supposed to go there? it doesn’t make sense to me! 🤨

both of these places are an easy bike ride from my house, they’re both places where people used to live, and i want to go poke around, take pictures, and see what is there now.

i know that they say $10,000 fine for trespassing, but i also know that there are SEMI-TRUCKS that regularly go in and out of the security gate at landsburg crossing (marked “Cedar River Trailhead” on the maps above), and i’ve seen folks with state-owned trucks, traveling on roads that have no trespassing signs on them, so i KNOW that the state makes exceptions to that rule… now it’s just a matter of finding out which strings to pull to have them make an exception for me… 😈

the next phase of operation mindfuck

230131 postcards
230131 postcards

they’re here.

now i have to (once again) pester the web designer into showing me how to make a product that has multiple purchase choices: one postcard, two postcards, three postcards, four postcards, five postcards, multiple 5-postcard packs… that sort of thing… he’s showed me how to do it once, with the jagannath pins that i had a few years ago, but they all sold out, and the item got deleted in one of my “clean up my web site” binges.

new scheme… will it work?

for a few years now, i have been playing around with this app for my tablet called FRAX, to which i was pointed by my friend gunnar, who is a fractal maniac. i find it really easy, and somewhat meditative, to generate an infinite variety (they’re fractals, after all 😉) of magnificently detailed, wildly psychedelic patterns, and i can crank out 4 to 6 images per hour, for several hours, before getting “bored” with it.

i have maintained for some time that “boredom is a state of mind i never visit”, and, while it’s true, from the outside one might presume that it’s boredom, when it’s really something else… but i digress…

the other day, i went through the photostream on my tablet (which i am finally getting organised enough that i can find what i’m looking for, some of the time), and discovered that i have 91 frax drawings in a directory, which started me thinking…

2017-12-26 16.03.22
2017-12-26 16.03.22

what if i made postcards out of these drawings, and sold them on my web site?

2019-03-08 19.08.12
2019-03-08 19.08.12

i’ve got more than enough raw material, and they wouldn’t take that much tweezing to get them to fit on a postcard…

2021-12-31 23.41.06
2021-12-31 23.41.06

and i can buy 100 18 point postcards (the really thick ones) for less than $20, which means that i can sell them for $1.00 a piece and make a profit (assuming that people buy them, about which i am not as certain).

2022-07-29 06.48.09
2022-07-29 06.48.09

not only that, but i can send them out to the IOTM club, which is coming up a lot sooner than i realised.

2023-01-19 18.36.21
2023-01-19 18.36.21

so, yesterday, i ordered 100 of five different fractal drawings (not necessarily the ones depicted here)… we’ll see what happens next.

2023-01-19 18.45.52
2023-01-19 18.45.52

🍄🍄🍄🍄🍄🍄🍄‼‼‼

so, this happened… 😉

230103 Psilocybe cyanescens
230103 Psilocybe cyanescens

at first, i wasn’t completely sure (it’s always a good idea to be skeptical with mushrooms), so i plugged it into PictureMushroom which confirmed that they are, in fact, Psilocybe cyanescens, a “Toxic” mushroom.

230103 PictureMushroom identification
230103 PictureMushroom identification

specifically:

Wavy caps and should be treated as a moderately poisonous mushroom, best avoided. Ingestion of wavy caps can induce symptoms that include vomiting, nausea, fever, psychosis and seizures.”

it goes on to describe almost exactly the same environment, region, climate, and time of year. combine that with the fact that i INTENTIONALLY propagated P. cyanescens spores, and i’ve got about as much confirmation as i need… 🍄😉🍄😎🍄👍🍄‼

🤣🤪

in my attempts to break free of #twit™ #turd™, i have created a reddit profile. i joined the r/incense subreddit, and almost immediately got banned for “spam”. the “spam” i am guilty of disseminating was the phrase “i’ve got resins for sale: pure frankincense, copal, and loban (seperately)… i’ve also got a big chunk of palo santo.” which i posted in response to ONE person.

it’s not “spam”. i didn’t advertise anything, i didn’t include links to my business, and i didn’t “mass mail” anybody: this was in response to ONE person.

nevertheless, the moderator that banned me was disinterested in discussing it, because “we both know what spam is”, and, as i am a “newbie” at reddit, i didn’t feel like arguing about it…

but… 😉

i was searching for other subreddits which may or may not be similar to r/incense, when i came across this post… in r/incense 🤣

someone else's reddit ad in a subreddit from which i was banned... 😉
someone else’s reddit ad in a subreddit from which i was banned… 😉

and it got 14 upvotes! 👍👍😉 this is, also, NOT spam (as it is on my own web site): a link to 999 Lord Krishna Puja Agarbatti, if anybody reading this is interested in purchasing some. 😉

W000T!! 😎

221220 hybrid elephant iphone!
221220 hybrid elephant iphone!

i’ve had this sayagata-pattern iphone case for an iphone that i have never owned, and, probably WILL never own, simply because its got a cool pattern on it. i was showing it off to moe, a week or so ago, and complaining that i didn’t know of anywhere i could get an iphone case with pictures that i want on them, and moe recommended about a dozen places that make custom iphone cases… because, these days, her “google-fu” is orders of magnitude better than mine… 😖

so, i had one made. now my phone exactly matches my car. 😎

snow(pocalypse?) 2022

221201 snow
221201 snow

it’s early enough in the season that i hesitate to call it an actual “snowpocalypse” (particularly since mercer island apparently has no snow at all), but, around here, it’s bad enough that i had to cancel my attendence at the (essential) panto rehearsal, last night, and i’m going (once they open) to have to cancel my attendence at my circus class this afternoon. 😒

moe waited until 8:00 am to go in to work, and, apparently, the “main road” is clear (having been plowed this morning), but i still worry about her ability to get home. yesterday, she left work at 5:00 pm, and didn’t actually get home until 7:30, because of the snow/traffic that had built up in issaquah… and she said the state patrol had just closed down eastbound highway 18 as she was going by.

AND i have four incense orders that have been scheduled to ship out today, and it doesn’t look as though i’ll be able to do it, because… well… moe took the truck, and my car is snowed in! 😠

i hate snow. 👎

BUT… there’s this weird thing happening in the pond across the street, this morning. i THINK i know what is happening, but that doesn’t make it any less weird:

221201 circular hole in the pond
221201 circular hole in the pond

i think that this circular hole in the pond is where there’s something (a branch, i think) sticking through the surface of the pond, and making a place where the snow/ice doesn’t stick… i’m not sure, because i have never seen this kind of thing before, but that’s the only thing i can think of.

both blirgday &c.

on this day, in 2007, i started this blog, as a response to livejournal selling out to the russians, which means that this blog has been in existence for 15 years, in more-or-less the same place. i wonder if it will last another 15 years. 😏 as a result of getting closer and closer to leaving “twit-turd”, i have established a presence at linktr.ee, where i put ALL the links to EVERYWHERE that i might be contacted… which is a little strange, because, as far as i know, it is the first time i have EVER posted, in the same place, links to personalities that i have endeavoured to keep separate, prior to this. it is also a bit strange, because i actually switched my harmonic flute video to “public” from “you can’t see it unless i gave you the link”, because i didn’t want “salamandir” and “rev. deluxe” obviously associated with each other. now, i’m not as concerned, i don’t think anyone of consequence will notice, and, even if someone of consequence DOES notice, it simply doesn’t bother me as much as it did 15 or 20 years ago.

“twit-turd” has become a seething morass of white supremacists, nazis, fascists, MAGAts, drumpf-lovers, vaccine denial, and hatred, ALL OF WHICH is more-or-less unmoderated, because (among other stupid things he’s done), when “ELONgated MUSKrat” bought it (under duress), the first thing he did was to re-instate a whole bunch of people who had been kicked off the service, for violating rules that “ELONgated MUSKrat” disagreed with… which, at this point, includes “Fartgorie Taylor-Greene” (who was booted for spreading vaccine misinformation), and Donald J. Drumpf, himself (who was booted for spreading lies about the 2020 election). how long i stay there is still up in the air, but it’s a matter of days, weeks, or months, and certainly not more than a year, unless some massive change happens. 😒

the first show of 2022 fell yesterday. it wasn’t very much, but it’s enough that i am re-thinking my plans to go to the panto rehearsal this evening, despite the fact that we only have three more rehearsals until the show starts.

221129 - 0930 am
221129 – 0930 am

this was yesterday, at approximately 9:30 in the morning. i PROBABLY could have driven my car in this amount of snow, but unfortunately…

221130 - 0745 am
221130 – 0745 am

this was today, at approximately 7:45 in the morning… i definitely COULD NOT drive my car with this amount of snow… moe says that, outside of our neighbourhood, the roads are plowed, clear, and passable, but… from where i sit, it looks like a skating rink, and i have to get up a hill (which moe said is a skating rink) in order to get out of the neighbourhood… and the only reason moe knows this is because she took the truck, loaded with concrete blocks to work today, because her car needs new tires (which she just discovered yesterday, after having slid around on various streets on her way home from work, yesterday).

weird genealogy

we got a whole bunch of new information about moe’s ancestors, and one family group caught my eye almost immediately: moe’s 4xgreat grandparents were related to each other…

221126 weird genealogy
221126 weird genealogy

the brother married into one family, the sister married into another family, they both produced children, who, then, married each other to produce one of moe’s 2xgreat grandfathers…

her 3x great grandparents were first cousins…

we don’t know, for sure, who the brother’s parents were, but they were born 15 years apart, in the same town, in the same county, in the same region of the netherlands, so the probability is fairly high… 🤣

the license plate in question

221010 BREATH license plate
221010 BREATH license plate

i went to bellingham on saturday. i left maple valley around 10:45, made it to bellingham by 11:30, picked up the license plate and dropped off a bag of weed for darol (i figured he deserves it, considering how many bags of weed he has given me), and made it out to ken and kamala’s new place on hannegan by 12:10, left there around 1:30 and drove down chuckanut on my way home.

and i’m pretty sure that the “old curse of bellingham” (the one where an old indian chief is reputed to have cursed the people that come to bellingham, that they will never be able to leave) is a superstition, because i have no more desire to live in bellingham. i have friends who live there, and it will always be a place i USED TO live, but i have zero desire to move back there. in spite of everything i’ve been complaining about recently, and my state of depression, i would still rather be where i am, than in bellingham.

up. date.

the most recent payment gateway to be tried is square. i checked authorize.net, but they want a $25 a month fee above and beyond the credit card processing fee, and sometimes i don’t make $25 in a month. square seems to be a viable alternative which comes highly recommended by at least one business-owner that i know personally (despite the fact that my web developer says “this one is one of the worse gateways” – he also accuses me of “refusing” to use paypal, however, which just goes to show how much he really knows) and i actually signed up for a square account a few years ago, when i bought a credit card reader for my phone… which i never used because i never needed to. apart from the fact that i have to go through all 323 products that i sell, one at a time, and mark them “sync with Square” (i’m still not certain what it even means, yet, but i’m sure i will find out soon enough…) i’m hoping that this will be the end of my credit-card-processor search for a while, because i’m done with it.

harvested one plant today. i was manicuring it, yesterday and today, and i found a small patch of mold on one of the buds, so i snipped it off, finished manicuring it, and gave it the chop. the other plant still has a couple weeks to a month before it’ll be ready, but, because of the mold on the other plant, i’ve got to be even more aware than i am normally, if i don’t want a moldy mess instead of nice fat buds…

221003 moldy bud
221003 moldy bud
221003 close up of the mold
221003 close up of the mold

however, currently, i have a fine crop of nice fat buds, so i’m hoping to keep it that way. 😉

221002 selfie with buds
221002 selfie with buds
221002 buds before manicure
221002 buds before manicure
221002 buds before manicure
221002 buds before manicure
221002 buds before manicure
221002 buds before manicure
221003 buds after manicure and chop
221003 buds after manicure and chop

surreal 2

220918 this is what i wanted
220918 this is what i wanted

this is what i wanted with #3, yesterday, but i didn’t get the offset right, because i wasn’t working with an extended background, once i extended it, i was able to get the offset where i wanted it.

it looks better the bigger it is… it might be cool as a heroic-size portrait… 😉

surreal

220917 surreal 1
220917 surreal 1
220917 surreal 2
220917 surreal 2
220919 surreal 3
220919 surreal 3

1 and 2 are straight from apple messaging phone. 3 is from the gimp, and is a combination of 2 and the reverse of 2. moe thinks they’re creepy. i disagree.

my “don’t give a fuck” pill 🍄

mushrooms.

mushrooms are my “don’t give a fuck” pill.

when i get cranky, depressed, irritable, out-of-sorts, and tired of doing anything, my “don’t give a fuck” pill helps me survive all of the unjust, inconsiderate, and outright wrong things that are happening to and around me. 😒

yeah, it doesn’t make the problems go away, or even diminish noticably, but what it does is gives me the ability to “not give a fuck” rather than letting them fuck with my brain to the point of incapacity.

that’s what MEDICINE SHOULD DO!

my MENTAL HEALTH PRACTICIONER TOLD ME to take mushrooms. — it still BLOWS MY MIND that i was given this instruction 🤯

she was right. 😉

so, instead of griping about how unjust my life is these days, and how many things have gone irretrievably wrong, i’m going to post pictures of my cannabis plants, and my trip in the forest. 😉

220826 cannabis flowers
220826 cannabis flowers
220826 cannabis flowers
220826 cannabis flowers
220826 cannabis flowers
220826 cannabis flowers

and it’s only the end of august! 😋

i went up road K again, where i saw the bear last year. no bears this year, but plenty of evidence that they had been there. 😉

220826 where i saw the bear
220826 where i saw the bear
220826 bear shit, five steps away
220826 bear shit, five steps away

because of the fact that it has been so dry, i actually went all the way up road K to the place where there isn’t any road, and there’s a sign that says “trail under construction, use different routes”. i could have gone further, but i was tired, and it was uphill. uphill is great when i’m “on my way up”, but by that time, i had reached a plateau, and uphill was asking too much.

so i walked back down to the old homestead, where i meditated for about an hour.

220826 looks like a duck
220826 looks like a duck

looks can be decieving… is something my father would have said. 😒

220826 duck, from the other side!
220826 duck, from the other side!
220826 MUSHROOMS!
220826 MUSHROOMS!
220826 MUSHROOMS!
220826 MUSHROOMS!
220826 i'm in the middle of nowhere, and i'm not really sure why i'm here, but I EXIST, AND I AM IMPORTANT!
220826 i’m in the middle of nowhere, and i’m not really sure why i’m here, but I EXIST, AND I AM IMPORTANT!
220826 intersection
220826 intersection

and the difference in my mood will definitely be to my advantage tomorrow, when there’s going to be game night at the burke’s, and on sunday, when the sousa band is playing at the ballard locks. 😉

what the…?

i don’t know for sure, because i don’t know what it would be like if i HADN’T taken mushrooms a week ago, but i will say that it’s PROBABLY a good thing i took mushrooms a week ago, because the intervening week was depressing beyond belief.

last tuesday, which was also our 24th wedding anniversary, when i was IN THE MIDST of a significantly more powerful psychedelic experience than i EXPECTED (considering how weak and impotent the immediately previous psychedelic experience had been), i got a text from moe, which said that some unknown thing had happened to rye (currently, our most senior dog, at 11½ years), and he was having trouble walking, moving, and standing — quelle horreur!!

220624 injured rye
220624 injured rye
when moe came home (still in the midst of a significantly more powerful psychedelic experience than i was expecting), rye was barely recognisable: he was curled up and bent over like a dog that was in SEVERE pain, he could barely walk, and he couldn’t even manage the two stairs leading from the garage to the back yard. they had done everything they could at moe’s veterinary practice to alleviate his pain, but they didn’t have a clue, and when they sent his x-rays out to a specialist, there was still no clue why he was in pain, so thursday, he had an MRI, and had surgery on his neck THAT DAY, because it was that emergent. 😱

the neurologist said that they were suprised the dog was walking at all. 😟

he came home from the hospital friday, and has been recovering ever since… which, basically, means that his movement is severely restricted: he lives in an ExPen, in the living room, full time, except for 4 or 5 bathroom breaks every 24 hours, and he sleeps in a kennel in monique’s office. it’s going to be two weeks before he will be allowed to go up and down stairs again, so moe has moved all of her stuff downstairs for a couple weeks.

SINCE THEN, i have had to deal with, suddenly, being in the middle of rehearsal season (rehearsals wendesday, sunday, monday, tuesday, wednesday, and so on) which i haven’t experienced AT ALL for two years, AND i’m going to the oregon country fair, for the first time in two years, which TERRIFIES me, even though i really want to go, AND (oh, joy), we’re getting a NEW PUPPY WHILE i will be at the oregon country fair… which means that, when i get home from OCF, we’re going to have a disabled dog, and a new puppy, AT THE SAME TIME

😩😰

i am running low enough on spoons that i actually cancelled busking this week, because i have a rehearsal later that day, and i’m pretty sure that if i went busking, i would be totally useless by the time the rehearsal came around.

quite apart from it being EXTREMELY WEIRD to be high on mushrooms while dealing with emotional people (who don’t know i am on mushrooms), and a severely injured dog, and quite apart from the fact that i am committed to doing something (OCF) that simultaneously terrifies me and is something i REALLY want to do, this entire sequence of events has not been particularly easy or enjoyable for me… 😒

and i’m REALLY not sure how i would have been able to handle it if it were NOT for mushrooms.

snakez alive busking

220511 Snakez Alive, busking at the Pike Place Market
The team of Thaddeus Spae (banjitar) and salamandir (tuba) performing at Pike Place Market, 5-11-22. Thaddeus said he has a street performance badge since 1975, while salamandir has one from 1978

220511 Snakez Alive, busking at the Pike Place Market
The team of Thaddeus Spae (banjitar) and salamandir (tuba) performing at Pike Place Market, 5-11-22. Thaddeus said he has a street performance badge since 1975, while salamandir has one from 1978

photography by david carlos

it’s…

it’s almost a sacrilege to wear this hat with ANYTHING other than an all-purple suit (and even better if it was a matching zoot suit, but they cost too much), and i have such a suit… but i’ll post this because it’s SO cool…

220510 salamandir's purple Tando hat
220510 salamandir’s purple zoot Tando hat

this is the final element of an all-purple suit: coat and pants, vest, shirt, cufflinks, a choice of 3 DIFFERENT shades of long ties, or a bow tie, pocket-square… i’ve even got a purple and black lapel-pin…

i MIGHT be wearing this to busk in, tomorrow… we’ll see. 😉

fitment

220509 fitment
220509 fitment

unless something very unusual happens after this point, this is what my car’s hood will look like, very soon… (except that it won’t be blurry or fuzzy, that’s just the screen-resolution graphic. the finished product will be full colour and crisp lines. 👍😉)

and, to midnight window tinting (the guys who didn’t care about the fact that i couldn’t email updates to them), i say “bleh”. 😛 wicked wraps was able to handle my file without an issue, didn’t require me to save it in a different format, was able to figure out EXACTLY what i wanted with minimal input from me, they’re doing it for less money than midnight window tinting 👍👍, and they even took the finished graphic as a RGB file (which amazed even me), because, apparently, their equipment works better with RGB than it does with CMYK… 👍 they haven’t even seen my car, yet, and, already, they’re doing a far better job than you guys ever did! “bleh” 😛

a long time ago…

229430 hemp stalks for casting  i ching
229430 hemp stalks for casting i ching
a long time ago…

(and i know it was a long time ago, because it was when i put a lot more faith (or whatever) in such things, which i have not done since well before my injury…)

i learned that there was some sort of mystical presence unlocked when, instead of using yarrow stalks, you used hemp stalks to cast i ching hexagrams.

i have always thought it was an interesting idea, and, to that end, now that it’s legal to grow hemp, i have now accumulated 50 appropriately sized hemp stalks which are intended to be used to cast i ching hexagrams.

however, because of the fact that i no longer place much faith (or whatever) in “techniques for divination”, i wonder what i should do with them? 🤷

i understand that i ching, particularly, is used as a valid form of self exploration, as well as a meditative practice, especially when the ancient, and far more meditative form of casting (which uses yarrow/hemp stalks), is used… but i don’t feel tremendously inspired to take up, or incorporate, another ancient practice, along with the ancient hindu, taoist, and muslim practices in which i currently engage.

i could put them up for sale on my web site, but that would seem to imply that i have multiple sets of stalks… and, while i do, there aren’t that many, currently, and only one of them is prepared enough to sell…

🤷

new car, new art

220429 ganesha the car art
220429 ganesha the car art

this may not be the final artwork, but it’s pretty close.

i dispensed with midnight window tinting, despite the fact that they sent me an original graphic, last year, when my cloud drive was vandalised, because the guy refused to talk to me, gave me vague reasons for doing things that i know nothing about, and refused to tell me more, then gave me a screen shot of my artwork that was totally screwed up (despite the aforementioned fact that he actually had a good copy, previously), and, to top things off, his email provider uses a spam detection service that “detected” my email, and refused to deliver my emails to him, and when i texted him to tell him, his response was “don’t care”…

i’m now going with “wicked wraps” — sounds like an east coast thing, but they’re on the west coast… who knows? 🤷 — i haven’t met them in person, yet, but i’ve corresponded with them, and i’ve seen their work, driving on the freeway…

mush room 🍄

i took “the rest” of my mushrooms today, at 12:00 pm. i don’t know how many there were, in terms of “mushrooms”, but it was between 1 and 2 grams (two 00-sized gel-caps, plus a tiny amount) of powder, mushroom bits and detritus at the very bottom of the bag. this trip followed the predictable pattern of ramp up, peak, maintain, and ramp down, but it was a great deal more than i expected, considering how mediocre my recent mushroom escapades have been. i must have been taking the parts that didn’t have the right stuff, before, because this trip made up for it “in spades”. 😉

the fact that i actually logged in here, and am making what i suppose is something like sense, at this point, at 5:00 pm, is somewhat amazing, and is made even more amazing by the fact that i went out and got a prescription refill for moe, a 12-pack of diet ginger ale, and canned salt-free green beans for dog food, an hour ago. i have discovered that driving while high on mushrooms has, apparently, been affected by both the fact that i have been driving NOT on mushrooms for quite a bit longer than the last time i did so (which was in my 20s), and the fact that cars, these days, are a lot more “hands off” than they were fourty years ago… following distance, speed limits, road-center detection… even an amount of steering… are all “automatic” at this point.

“high self”, meet “normal self”. 😉

while i was out walking in the woods today, i saw a fallen branch with moss growing off of it… and it looked just like a lazy duck with green hair.

220209 is this just a fallen log, or...?
220209 is this just a fallen log, or…?
220209 is this just a fallen log, or...?
220209 is this just a fallen log, or…?

i knew those emergency eyeballs would come in handy… 😉

i confirmed that the big tree that has been speaking to me, is a “Tree of Being”… the only other one that i know of is on sehome hill. this one appears to be around 600+ years old. i sat beneath it, today.

this better have some lasting anti-depressant effects, otherwise i’m going to have to do it again. 😉

cirque du soleil

a couple of friends bought moe and i tickets to see the cirque du soleil show “Allegria”, which we used today. i have seen “Saltimbanco”, and “Volta”, and i think i like this one best of all. it is, apparently, “Allegria 2.0”, which is a reboot of the show they did from 1994 to 2013, which, according to moe, was “why there weren’t as many set pieces and why there was a lot more acrobatics…” and, indeed, there was A LOT more acrobatics than i have seen at previous cirque shows. there were stacks of 3 people in several of the acts, and EVERY. SINGLE. ACT. had some variety of “death defying stunt”, from the stack of 3 people that “fell” into a bunch of long poles, which were being held on the shoulders of other guys, and ended up with two of the stack of three people standing ON the poles… and a 4-way “tumble track” that had 8 people bouncing and tumbling over the top of each other… and the guy with the german wheel that started with the wheel flat on the ground, and he got it up and rotating SIMPLY BY exherting momentum with his feet…

220129 cirque du soleil fire baton juggler - photo by moe
220129 cirque du soleil fire baton juggler – photo by moe
and the guy that juggled two fire batons, which he lit by passing the fire from one end to the other with his mouth… and the people that did the 3-dimentional acrobalancing dance, hanging from wires in the ceiling… and the contortionist/hand-balancer that, i think, may have been in the moisture festival a few years ago… and the flying trapeze artists… oh my! i don’t know what the original “Allegria” show was like, but this one BLEW. ME. AWAY!

literally… there was one of the “entr’acte” scenes, with clowns, where they created a literal blizzard of confetti that completely engulfed the people who were sitting close to the stage (which included us)… and then, after they had done a little dance with leaf blowers, to get the confetti off the stage, they had people who ran sheets up, over the heads of the front rows of seats, and they blew the confetti on to the sheets, which were, presumably, gathered up and recycled for the next show… there was A LOT of confetti…

and i got a souvenier collapsible velvet top hat, which is something i have wanted for a very long time. 😉

look, it’s the end of the world!

a VERY long time ago — i would guess somewhere between 1964 and 1967, or thereabouts — i participated in a “market research study” (for which my parents, hopefully, got paid), where, over the course of a week or so, i would try various different dry cereals, and “potential” dry cereals — which they had produced, but hadn’t “hit the market” yet — without knowing anything about them, and rate them according to what i thought dry cereal should look and taste like.

i’m fairly sure i screwed up ALL of their data points, because i was a combination of three things, which severely skewed my personal experience of dry cereal. the first was that, when i was very small, there was a concern that i might be allergic to cows’ milk (which had been proven false, by the time this took place), and so, when i was learning which cereals i liked, i was only given cereals that could be eaten “without milk”… which, for some reason, meant various different kinds of oatmeal and grits… i wasn’t even given “cream of wheat” because it had the word “cream” in it, and, particularly, my mother was CONVINCED that it wouldn’t be good for me. the second was that my parents were “progressive”: not full-blown “hippies” (however, my dad did have long hair and a beard, but it wasn’t until the ’70s) but definitely not the standard fare for the time and place they were from, which was central illinois “corn country” in the mid-to-late ’60s. thus, they were CONVINCED that sugar was “bad”, so, as a result, when it was determined that dry cereal was “a thing”, i was only given ‘bland’ cereals, such as cheerios, kix, chex, puffed wheat, and grape nuts. by the time i was part of the survey, i was eating cows’ milk all the time, but i never liked “sugar frosted flakes”, “sugar smacks”, “chocolate frosted sugar bombs” or anything like that… and the third thing is that, when i was very small, i was forced to eat fruit at a time when i really DID NOT want to eat fruit, and, as a result, i developed a lifelong distaste for fruit, in general, and about 75% of the cereal that i tested was fruit flavoured, in some way or another.

i spent a few days trying, and rejecting about 95% of the “chocolate frosted sugar bombs” they offered me, primarily because they were so sweet that it overpowered any “cereal-like” taste there may have been.

220123 Chocolate Cheerios! 😱
220123 Chocolate Cheerios! 😱
however, there is one thing that i remember clearly, and that was that “they” (the people conducting the survey, who were, according to my interpretation, in a position to know these things) told me that there would NEVER be “chocolate cheerios”. they told me that the makers of cheerios were totally against making their cereal “pre-sweetened”, and if i saw chocolate cheerios on sale, it would mean the end of the world. cheerios was, by definition, NOT a “pre-sweetened” cereal.

over the years, they have come close… the closest they’ve gotten that i know about was “honey-nut cheerios”, which was “pre-sweetened”, but, because of the fact that it was, alledgedly, sweetened with honey, and not sugar, it was, alledgedly, “okay”…

however, when i came across this, yesterday… 😱

so, there’s this…

220112 ΣΩΤΗΡ ΚΟΣΜΟΥ button
220112 ΣΩΤΗΡ ΚΟΣΜΟΥ button
so there’s this, which is a prototype (flong!) of a 1½" button for next month’s IOTM VIP goodie…

however i’m not sure about it. it’s an absolutely delicious double (or triple!) entendre, for those few who “know about such things”, but how many people spent the first 30 years of their lives studying obscure religious facts? and, i’m afraid it could be taken to be VERY offensive to… um… just about anybody else…

under normal circumstances, i wouldn’t care in the slightest, but this is, allegedly, representing my business, and i would be sending them out to people who don’t know me…

[ETA 220114] — it’s an 18th century drawing of what the ancient roman god Priapus might have looked like. ΣΩΤΗΡ ΚΟΣΜΟΥ (soter kosmou) means “Saviour of the World”, and it was usually inscribed below the penis face. however, in a bizarre twist, the figure of “a man with the head of a rooster and an erect penis for a beak” may have also been a representation of st. peter, in which case, ΣΩΤΗΡ ΚΟΣΜΟΥ refers to jesus. it’s one of the reasons a penis is sometimes referred to as a “peter”. 🤣

blasphemy?

okay, this is discounting the fact that gods only exist in the minds of those who worship them… this is a purely practical examination of the aspects of hindu gods, in particular… and to be precise, an examination of their clothing.

most depictions of deities are clothed. there are deities which are naked, and part of the devotion to these deities is dressing, undressing, and bathing them, but i’m talking about the deities that are depicted as clothed.

i wonder…

a depiction of the multiple arms of Kali Maa, in Goa
a depiction of the multiple arms of Kali Maa, in Goa

how is Kali Maa supposed to put on that shirt?

BLEHHHH!!!

day NINE of more than one foot of snow, and it’s currently snowing at this very moment!

i tried getting out to ship out the IOTM orders this morning, and didn’t even make it out of the driveway before getting stuck!

220103 stuck car
220103 stuck car

this is not fun any more. 😒

although, it’s a good thing i got stuck when i did, because i could have made it halfway down the street, or halfway to the middle-of-nowhere post office before getting stuck, which would be even worse…

[ETA] moe came home early, and informed me that there is a tree down across the road, about 150 yards up the street from our house, where it can’t be seen from our house… which means that, even if i had gotten out, i wouldn’t have got far. a lady heavy equipment operator came around and plowed the street in front of our house, all the way to the dead end, in exchange for $100. she said she’s been plowing the roads in our neighbourhood for 4 years.

bleh

blah blah new year, blah blah pandemic, blah blah isolation, blah blah depression…

same as it ever was:

day 5 SEVEN of 1+ foot of snow. keeping fingers crossed, but no power outage yet. at this point, the main roads are slushy, and some of them are bare and wet, but the street in front of our house has few enough tire prints that i can still count them. last year someone eventually plowed our street, but i don’t know who, and they haven’t done it this year. i brushed all the snow off my car, and ventured out today, because i’ve actually got a unicycle class tomorrow, and i needed to know whether or not to admit defeat, and take monique’s all-wheel-drive car (or the truck). as it is, it’s supposed to get up to 42°F, so i will probably take my car to class.

211230
211230

goo dot gl 😒

goo dot gl URL redirect QR code
goo dot gl URL redirect QR code
a few years ago, i got a QR code from google, attached to their URL-forwarder at goo dot gl, that resolved to वृत्तिः from “Unknown Album”, which i promptly had made into a sticker, which i have been sticking to various different things, and handing to strangers i meet on the street, for a few years now.

i INTENDED to use goo dot gl’s analytics to determine how many people had hit the link, and where they were located. apparently that was only a SMALL FRACTION of the information i could receive from the QR code.

what i didn’t know is that they shut down their URL-forwarder at goo dot gl in 2018 and i only JUST found out about it.

fortunately the QR code, and the URL-forwarder continue to work, but…

goddam it, gewgel… when you stop using something important, you should make it somewhat more obvious. 😒

now, admittedly, i INTENDED to use the goo dot gl analytics, but i only logged in to see what was happening for the first time, today, so i really was NOT paying attention, but still… you would think that a company as big as the big G could be a little more public about things like this.

aaarrggghh! it happened again!!

that’s A³R²G³H² for those of you keeping track…

i have discovered YET ANOTHER thing that fell victim to the crack of 2021, and that was the user manual for our fireplace!

particularly, this exact diagram (found, and re-downloaded by MOE, who is the undisputed google-master of this house) which is found on page 28 of said manual:

211111 wood-stove diagram
211111 wood-stove diagram
this shows the position of the flue/damper (labeled “burn rate air control”) and the automatic startup air control for the woodstove. the flue/damper is a thing i am familiar with, but the postion and manufacture of this particular woodstove, plus it’s relative “new-ness” from my standpoint, makes it very difficult for me to remember the correct position, which is VITALLY important when starting this stove, in order to prevent huge clouds of smoke from coming out of every non-welded join in the entire stove and chimney…

and the “automatic startup air control” is something i have never experienced in a woodstove before… it’s got a mechanical timer, and it gradually closes vents at the bottom of the fire, so that it has plenty of air to start with, but not so much air after 30 minutes or so…

and WITHOUT the information in this diagram, i have a very difficult time remembering the correct position for these things, which makes it REALLY frustrating, when i have to start a fire, as i did this evening. 🤬🤬🤬

fortunately, i have MOE to rescue me when technology fails. i now have this manual re-downloaded and stored away in an obvious place on my new cloud server. 😉

my guess is that this sort of thing is going to become, more-or-less, a standard occurance chéz salamandir, so it’s a good thing i’m starting to keep track of it now… i think… 😕

the pond, nazis

200412 first morning
200412 first morning
across the street from our house is a pond. it normally has about 10 feet of water in it. you can see it in this photo of the “first morning”, which was taken last year. the pond started losing water in early spring of this year, and it has been mostly dry for almost four months.

today, after 3 days of rain, the pond FINALLY has water in it… not 10 feet of water, or even 10 inches of water, but it’s a start… and it’s going to have to rain A LOT MORE before we’ll be back to the “normal” 10 feet of water. 😒

but “climate change” and the coronavirus are chinese frauds, and we need to prevent the teaching of Critical Race Theory to junior high school kids in public schools. 😒

211006 the "pond"
211006 the “pond”

seriously, i’ve been removing flyers for patriotfront dot us, and flyers for somebody who is running for school board SPECIFICALLY on the platform of “mask CHOICE, not mandate” and “no CRT in schools”, from the bulletin board at the local convenience store… 😠 i’ve been replacing them with my “ultimatum to world leaders”, with a link to ABillionPeople.org, but it’s been being taken down almost as soon as i put it up, so i’ve been trying to get “creative”…

but it’s really disturbing to me that there are actual nazis living in my community. 😠 if he gets elected (which i hope doesn’t happen, but around here, who knows), i wonder how much actual school board experience he has, because the pandemic is not going to last forever, and once he discovers that public primary schools AREN’T teaching “critical race theory” he’s not going to have much of a platform left… but, by then, he’ll have discovered that the school board buys school books for the district, and i’m pretty sure he’ll have something to say about that. 😒

the 2nd plateau has been achieved!

on 190114 i reached the first plateau, and i’ve been hanging around there ever since.

but, recently, the batteries that completed the first plateau have been acting like they’re on their last legs, not holding a charge, or charging inconsistently, so i decided to get new ones.

unfortunately, the batteries that they made in 2019 are no longer being manufactured, and i really don’t like buying stuff online, where you can’t examine it closely before deciding it won’t work…

which is exactly what happened with an outfit called “slick vapes” (they have a web site, but i won’t link to it, because they’re assholes). i looked through their selection of dab pen batteries and bought 3 “Evolve” batteries… which turned out to be exactly the same as the batteries i rejected prior to reaching the first plateau (they were “pen sized”, wouldn’t hold more than a few hours charge, when they would hold a charge at all, charged inconsistently, etc., etc., etc. 😒). then, i discovered a new type of “coilless” atomiser that looked like it would fit, but i wasn’t sure, because… online… 😒 so i ordered them, and they got back to me and accused me of using a stolen credit card… 😒 and when i got that straightened out, they said they had shipped the product, but the tracking number they sent me said that USPS was still waiting for the package two weeks after they said it was shipped. 😒 and when they FINALLY arrived, wouldn’t you know, they don’t fit any of the vape mods i have. 🤬

210915 the second plateau
210915 the second plateau
i’m still in the process of getting that whole FUMTU straightened out, but, in the mean time, i went to XHale Vapor ‘n’ Smoke, in issaquah, and bought an ELeaf iStick TC40W battery which has controls for temperature and wattage! so now i don’t have to press the button and about 50% of the time get no vapour at all, and the other 50%, get so much vapour that i choke. 😉 it also has a battery life indicator. the one down side that i’ve noticed, so far, is that it uses the micro-USB charging port, but it came with a cable, and the other micro-USB cables i have fit, so i’m just going to have to see how long it lasts. but it’s solid! it’s “hefty”… it’s got substance… not like the batteries from slick vapes, which, honestly, look a lot more flashy than anything else.

see, this is the problem…

210825 woods walk
210825 woods walk
even under the best of circumstances, “microdosing” mushrooms is a hit-or-miss proposition…

a couple weeks ago, i decided i was going to take a “proper” mushroom trip, and, towards that end, i prepared two 00-sized capsules with the oldest of my mushroom stash. by last week, i had decided that i didn’t want to take the whole thing, all at once, so i took the larger one…

and didn’t feel anything… 😞

which was really dissapointing, but i figured the mushrooms were old enough that they’d lost all their potency. despite the fact that i didn’t “feel” anything, i definitely noticed the “characteristic” anti-depressant effects of the psilocybin, and so, this week, i decided to take the other, smaller capsule.

that was at 12:30 this afternoon…

this time, i DEFINITELY feel something…

despite the fact that the capsule was approximately 25% SMALLER than the one i took last week, i’ve definitely had a marvelously melty afternoon, after going for a ≈5 mile walk in the woods, i came home and spent the afternoon doodling and listening to music over headphones…

it’s now approximately 6:00…

210825 mushroom drawing
210825 mushroom drawing

something i haven’t done in a very long time… stupid brain injury… 😒

🤔

this afternoon, i was doing some yard work, and i found this in the gravel between the house and the trailer…

210819 Alaska Yukon Pacific 100th Anniversary pin, quarter for scale
210819 Alaska Yukon Pacific 100th Anniversary pin, quarter for scale

it’s small enough that i’m 100% certain that, if i didn’t already know what it was, i wouldn’t have even noticed it, but…

AS IT HAPPENS… i know EXACTLY what it is, which is a 1909-2009 Alaska Yukon Pacific 100th Anniversary pin, which was given to performers at the celebration, and (i believe) were also for sale to the people who came to the celebration. i know this because, in 2009, the ballard sedentary sousa band peformed at the Alaska Yukon Pacific Exhibition 100th Anniversary… although, for some (now) unknown reason, i was unable to make that gig, so i had liz get me a pin, becuase i have always been interested in the alaska yukon pacific exhibition, and i was really dissapointed that i couldn’t be there… and i THOUGHT that pin was on my red fedora, because that’s the last place i saw it, and it was only last week that i wore that hat…

could i have lost my AYP pin? 😨

so i ran upstairs to check, and… no, my AYP pin is right where it’s supposed to be:

210819 my AYP pin, right where it's supposed to be
210819 my AYP pin, right where it’s supposed to be

so, that raises a new question… was the former owner of my house at the AYP 100th anniversary, and did he/she/they buy a pin? or were they performers? i consider the latter to be EXTREMELY unlikely…

bare bear!

i saw a bare bear (a black one) today, at 47.4336528, -121.9412438 at approximately 1700 hours.

sorry, there are no pictures, i was too busy getting the fuck out of there.

here are some wildlife pictures that aren’t twice my size with four inch claws, even if it was going the opposite direction.

dear deer (i think it's a buck)
dear deer (i think it’s a buck)
super slug!
super slug!

also, some paraidolia, for you religiomus folks. 😉

tree face
tree face

hello, old friend…

i’ve got a lot on my mind… my new car, my old car, monique’s old car, my cloud drive, the data, which still needs A LOT of categorising and sorting. there’s so much of it, and about a third to one half of it is corrupt, but i can’t tell without attempting to read it…

next to my tablet is a cup which contains pens, pencils, permanent markers, a divider, a compass, a bong reamer, several dental tools, a couple of hemostats… miscelaneous things that i need on a regular basis. i was looking for the original gear shift knob for my old car, which involved emptying out a bag of miscelaneous leftovers from when we moved (last year), which i never got around to sorting out. it had a number of things that i had been looking for, like my extra vape battery, an extra container for concentrates, my (ORIGINAL!) fidget-cube, and some extra pens and pencils, which i proceded to put in the cup next to my tablet… but it was full.

so, i decided to get a larger can, from my workshop, into which to transfer the pens, pencils, and miscelaneous tools, which took a while, because i had to find the can that i was looking for. when i’d found the can, i went back into my office, and transferred the stuff into it, in the bottom of the cup, i found this…

miniature citrine ganesha
miniature citrine ganesha

i got this… i don’t know how many years ago… i think it was before my injury… i got it a clear quartz ganesha, and this citrine one, at the same time, but i lost the citrine one almost immediately — like, within the first two weeks — and i have never seen it since.

2 miniature ganesh murtis and 10¢
2 miniature ganesh murtis and 10¢

depression art?

210617 stele progress
210617 stele progress
it has taken a really long time to get this far, and i have been going miserably slow, because i’ve had to source materials (and made some pretty dramatic “compromises” in order to simply get the project started… 😒), and because of other things (read “databases”) taking my attention…

AND because i’m being a perfectionist about it, and not being satisfied with the work that i’ve already done… seriously, there have been a couple of times when, despite the work that i’ve already done, i’ve thought about trashing the whole thing and starting over, because ONE TINY DETAIL is slightly askew, which nobody except the most hard-core thelemite would notice…

but, see, that’s the thing… i’m making this because I AM a “hard-core thelemite” (among other things), and, seriously, i want it to be as close to the original as absolutely possible, while, at the same time, being 40% smaller, and entirely made by hand…

AND, BUT, ALSO… a NEW CAR!! 😒 no, no, no… AND because i have been depressed enough that, even when i am doing nothing else, for EXTENDED periods of time, i have been having difficulty finding the motivation to work on it, and i kind of DON’T want it to turn into “depression art”, it being a spiritual piece, and everything…

what i am doing to combat depression:

  1. taking 100mg of bupropion every day. whether it’s doing anything or not remains to be seen.
  2. taking mushrooms occasionally, but not as frequently as i’d like (the most recent time was last tuesday, three mushrooms). along those same lines, i am still:
    • planning on growing mushrooms in the near future
    • got expert advice on call
    • got the spores
    • got the substrate: “Uncle Ben’s 90 minute rice — 90 minutes, perfect every time!”
    • got a still-air egg incubator
    • still need to find information about how and when to transfer from the sterile substrate to “growing boxes”
    • bought some size 00 capsules. am going to try grinding the mushrooms and putting them in capsules to see if i can standardise the dosage a little better. 😉
  3. read “Wired For Love”, planning on buying the book.
  4. convinced moe to read “Wired For Love” (she starts it this weekend)
  5. going as slow as necessary
  6. being as easy on myself as i can.

possibly other things i don’t recall at this time.

whether those things are actually having any effect remains to be seen. i’m afraid to think of what comes next if they’re not having any effect. 😒

database hell, okay?

i gave the web developer my login to the open support ticket at the host provider. there hasn’t been any obvious action yet, but i’ve emailed with the web developer, who worked out a temporary solution which may work out if his attempts to communicate with the host provider don’t work out… but, as i said, he hasn’t even logged in, much less done what the host provider asked of me, which was to “clearly lay out the issues you’re facing and the solution you need done to resolve this issue”.

210606 screenshot SQL error
210606 screenshot SQL error
the issues are that i can’t add new content (the “not HTML” difficulty and its results), and i get weird SQL errors, which only appear once, and then go away. i don’t get them on a regular basis: sometimes i get them the first time i hit the site, when i boot my computer in the morning, and sometimes i get them in the middle of the afternoon. frequently i get them when i’m hitting the base URI, but i’ve also seen them when i’m hitting deeper content.

i don’t know what the solution is, because i don’t know what is causing it. my web developer seems to think it’s the database engine at my host provider, because he has some sort of advanced tool that tells him when things aren’t working correctly. my host provider says he’s full of shit, that his proposed “upgrades” will break things for everybody else, and won’t even talk to the him unless he logs in as me. unfortunately, i know little enough about database engines that any input i can offer would be totally meaningless.

i feel a little bit better, because, now, instead of "doing this as a courtesy as this is not included as part of your Web Maintenance", they have now, actually charged me money, so i am, actually, paying them to fix my shit, and the temporary work around that he proposed, while not ideal, would certainly fix the problem for at least a year.

but i seem to recall going through another database fiasco last year around this time, and, if this is going to become a regular occurrance, i think i’ll pass, thanks. 😒

ETA: the web developer has logged in as me, and given a detailed description of exactly what is wrong, exactly why he thinks it’s wrong, examples of identical installations that follow his guidelines that don’t experience the problems i’m having, and a variety of different solutions to the problems he’s found. the host provider has yet to reply. because of the fact that they’re on eastern time, there’s a good chance we won’t hear anything until tomorrow.

😲

so, for some time now, i have wanted to make a reproduction of The Stele Of Revealing, and i got started the other day. but very quickly, i realised that, if i want to make it a “good enough” reproduction rather than a reproduction that would only look good if you didn’t look too closely, i would need to know the original dimensions, and have a reasonably accurate idea of what the heiroglyphs look like, and what the other artwork looks like, and i would, then, need to reduce them from their original size to the size that i ended up deciding i was going to make it — approximately a 40% reduction.

because i’m an artist, i know that, usually (in the absence of photocopiers, or proportional cameras), the tool used to make miniature reproductions is a proportional divider. i have used them before, know what they look like, and know that they can be very expensive. i didn’t want a really expensive one, but i also did not want something that somebody (most likely me) made out of plywood, because it wouldn’t be accurate enough, so i went to ebay, and discovered the exact tool i needed — from the picture, i deduced that it was, largely, the same tool i used in high school, when i was first learning about proportional dividers.

210515 proportional dividers
210515 proportional dividers

they arrived in the mail today. they are… um… not what i expected.

what arrived in the mail was a finely machined set of proportional dividers with sharpened tool steel points, and an engraved scale for both circles and lines. it is stamped “J.H.Weil & Co.” and it came in a velvet-lined case with antique gold writing on the outside that says U.S.C.E., which i take to mean U.S. Army Corps of Engineers… my impression is that, under normal circumstances, this could be as much as a $200 tool, but, because of the fact that it appears to be a vintage, military tool, it could be worth a lot more… this is a tool that is, pretty much GUARANTEED to be accurate to at least one thousandth of an inch… and it cost me less than $50!

so, i just wanted to give a shout out to Next Stage Vintage… they suprised the hell out of me! thank you! 😉👍

and i am going to use it to reduce The Stele Of Revealing… 😲

210423 trillia, elk ridge trail

trillium — picking parts off a trillium plant can kill it even if the rhizome is left undisturbed… so don’t. around here, they are T. albidum, T. ovatum, and T. petiolatum. all the ones pictured here are ovatum. 😉

210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail
210423 trillium, elk ridge trail

victory is mine!

210421 repaired magnifying loupe
210421 repaired magnifying loupe
210421 repaired magnifying loupe
210421 repaired magnifying loupe
210421 repaired magnifying loupe
210421 repaired magnifying loupe

i got the nuts that fit the screws, i took the loupe part off the old, broken frames, and mounted it on the new, unbroken frames, with entirely new screws and nuts, and washers from the repair kit the denmat/perioptix people sent me. the new screws are TINY alan-key drive… mcmaster-carr doesn’t have philips-head screws that are 2-64… 😒 i don’t actually have an alan-key small enough to tighten them, but i’m pretty sure i got it tight enough with a wrench on the nut side. 🔧

ETA: it turns out i do have an alan-key that is small enough, and i did get it tight enough with a wrench… HOWEVER in my final look-over before i put it back in the box, i noticed something i hadn’t before, which is that the hinge is completely broken, and, while the repair kit they sent me has a replacement hinge, it’s actually the part of the hinge that is a molded part of the magnifier, itself, which means that i cannot fix it, because it is an integral part of the actual optical piece… replacement parts for which, i already know they no longer make. 😒

210421 eyebrow hole
210421 eyebrow hole

at this point, it’s still in one piece, and functional, so long as you don’t move the hinge around too much, but the hinge has already failed and cannot be repaired. it’s just a matter of time before the whole thing falls apart. 🤬

i also burned a hole in my eyebrow, when i was grinding down the screw so that it wouldn’t poke the wearer in the eye, and i put the frames on to test them too quickly after grinding… 😉

and, in the grand old tradition of operation mindfuck…

i took a hit of LSD today.

it was one of two that have been in the freezer for AT LEAST 20 years, and maybe as many as 30… my recollection is that i actually obtained them during one of my “oh my god the world is going to end any day now, and i’ve got to have an emergency stash, just in case” phases, and has been hanging out in other people’s freezers when it wasn’t in my own, and when neither one was handy, it was on my altar in an airtight bag, in an airtight film canister…

but, it was AT LEAST 20 years old, and i really had no idea what to expect.

and, i just realised that i grossly underestimated how old those were… i think i got them after i lived in mount vernon, and before i moved to seattle, which was in the 1993-4 range…? gawd i’m old… 😒

i dropped at 10:00 am, and by 11:30 i was totally thinking it was a dud. then i got a text from lisa, who wanted to come at 1:30, and get their (well, not exactly “their”, but it’s a long and unrelated story) pressure washer, and, i decided that, if it was a dud, then it would probably be safe for me to drive to 4 corners, and refill their gas can (which i had almost completely drained, in my two day attack on the slime front deck), and i did so, without any perceivable distortion… but by the time 1:30 came around, i was feeling a little something, and i figured, oh, well, delayed release, but it’s something… and by the time 2:00 came around, and lisa actually showed up… well, i had been sitting out on the front deck, talking to the hummingbirds. 😉

after she left, and against my better judgement (but i was high on acid, so pretty much anything i did would be against most peoples’ better judgements), i drove the 3 miles from our house to the back side of taylor mountain TRIPPING MY ASS OFF and wandered up taylor mountain for a few hours.

210413 acid tripping
210413 acid tripping
210413 acid tripping
210413 acid tripping

first, i came across this rock:

210413 aware rock
210413 aware rock

it was by the side of the path, not far enough out to be a hinderence or something to trip over, but about six inches from the outer edge of the path, and as i walked by, i suddenly became aware of the fact that that rock has been watching me, every time i walk that path, ever since i first started going there, about three months ago… that rock is AWARE of me… at which point i had to fight off a strong desire to turn the rock upside down, to see if that would affect it’s awareness of me, but then i realised that it would only make it more aware of me, because i was the person who turned it upside down.

then i went up to the washout, where road “A” doesn’t go through any more, and meditated for an hour or so, and played with the tube…

i REALLY want to get up there with my harmonic flute and electronic doodads, but it wouldn’t help an acid trip, and i’d just watch the lights blink, anyway (this alludes to one of the many, many times i took acid in the early 1980s, when i was in college, and thought i would try to make the synthesizer work… and i ended up hooking it up so that every light blinked in a random fashion, but made no noise, and then turned out the lights in the studio, and… you know the rest 😉).

then i walked up to the intersection of road “A” and road “H”, to the place where the beaver pond washed out road “A” (this is the “upper washout” on road “A”, the one i have been to before, is, apparently, the “lower washout”), where, at 4:30 in the afternoon, on a tuesday, i ran into a random guy and his dog, who were out for a walk…

this is like the time a few years ago, when i was on mushrooms at 5 Mile Lake Park, near our old house, and this random jogger came up and asked me if there were sharks in… the… freshwater… lake… 😕

he looked at his watch, and said that he was shooting for three miles, and he was only at two and a half, and walked on up the trail…

on the way down the hill, i recorded an instance of 4’33” which i uploaded to johncage dot org. you can listen to it here.

i made it back to my car around 5:30 pm, and drove the 3 miles back home. it’s now 7:30 pm, and i’m still high… if experience is anything to go by, i’ll probably be tripping until at least 10:00…

i guess it’s a really good thing i didn’t take the other hit when i thought the first one was a dud… 😉

i prefer the gentle, insistent urgings of mushrooms to the “kick upside the head” of LSD, but, when it comes to getting me “out of my mind”, either one of them will do the trick.

the last of the mushrooms… 🍄

i had one relatively large mushroom, approximately half a gram, or so, and some leftover stems and pieces of cap that, all together, made up, maybe a gram, total… i.e. not very much, under the best of circumstances, and they were, also, at least three years old… so they weren’t particularly powerful, anyway…

… but… 😉

i definitely felt something — a little shimmering and sparkling around the edges of the forest — and the antidepressant effects are plainly evident. 😉

i went for a walk up the back side of taylor mountain. i started out going down the carey creek trail, which hasn’t been open since i’ve lived here. i walked down that for about half a mile, until i got to the edge of a king county park (on the map i found, it’s called “donkey engine”) when i noticed that i had been walking down a railroad grade, it started getting more steep, and i realised that i wouldn’t want to be walking uphill when i was coming down from a mushroom trip, so i turned around and went back the other direction.

where i parked was at the southeast 208th st. “back” entrance to taylor mountain, right across the street from the dire warning no trespassing cedar river watershed signs. after walking down the carey creek trail, i walked up “road G” until i came to the intersection of “road A”, which was closed because of a washout… evidently, a couple of years ago, at least, because there was a fairly well established trail through the washout, that skirted the “official” “road closed” signs and fences. 😉

and, i walked from the washout to the intersection of “road K”, which is when i realised that this end of “road A” connects up to the end of “road A” that comes out at the “front” entrance to taylor mountain, about 5 miles up issaquah-hobart road, just off highway 18.

here’s what i saw:

210406 moss
210406 moss

to my mushroom-induced mind, this moss took the form of a tall, shapely woman with long hair, walking away from me… it doesn’t look anything like that now, but it was startlingly clear enough that i took the picture AND remembered what it was.

210406 20-foot stump
210406 20-foot stump

the tree growing out of this stump is four feet in diameter. the stump, itself, is around twenty feet in diameter. 🤯

210406 trees
210406 trees

i was tripping on mushrooms, so, of course, i had to take a picture of the sky, through the trees… 😉

210406 tree
210406 tree

this could be another “Tree of Being”… i’m not sure, but it speaks to me… 😉

210406 spiral
210406 spiral

this is taken at the end of an overflow pipe that is supposed to sluice water away from the washout… it was, evidently, uneffective, because it is well above the washout. it is a place that, insinctively, i stuck my head into, and started humming to find the resonant frequency. it’s definitely some place that i should return to, accompanied by my harmonic flute and electronic stuff… and, it’s especially appropriate because it’s a spiral, and i was tripping on mushrooms (although, by the time i came across it, i was already mostly down from my trip 😉)

sigh…

one year ago yesterday we closed on our new house.

today, i started pressure washing the front deck, possibly for the first time in 10 years or more. the deck, for the entire time we’ve lived here, has been a trecherous place to walk, when it is wet — and, i mean, TRECHEROUS… even being careful, i have suddenly and unexpectedly found myself on the ground after the frequent rain showers we have around here. i’m not sure, but i think that, at one time, it had been stained a dark brown, but it hadn’t been sealed, and, quite quickly, the dark brown stain started to mask some dark brown mold that was allowed to spread, unchecked, until the house was sold to us, last year.

and i have, FINALLY started to pressure wash it… with a gas-powered pressure washer, loaned to us by monique’s boss. unfortunately, it was stubborn enough that i didn’t finish, and it’s supposed to rain tomorrow, so i don’t know if i’m going to get a chance to finish it until monday.

210327 deck side stairs
210327 deck side stairs
210327 half done
210327 half done

i started around noon, and gave up when monique got home, at 6:30 pm. once i get it pressure washed, a friend who has a deck sander is going to come by and sand and seal it for us, so that it doesn’t turn into an ice-skating rink every time it rains.

that was way easier than it was the last time…

so, i went down to pick up my HPOI this morning.

i didn’t have to spend three quarters of the day dealing with testy customs agents, indifferent import brokers, and recalcitrant shipping managers, and paying almost $500 to various people i had never heard of before, who had practically nothing to do with my shipment…

i arrived, was directed where to go, submitted two documents, had the lady scan my driver’s license, and then she gave me a piece of paper (with my scanned driver’s license on it), and told me to go “down the hall, to your left”, where i walked into a big wire cage. on the other side was a warehouse, full of wares. a friendly-looking guy with a grey beard under his mask, came up, asked to see my paperwork (😉), and then told me to pull around to the sally-port and he would meet me there. i backed my car up to the sally-port, and the guy came with a forklift, carrying three big boxes… i loaded them into my car, and drove away.

total elapsed time, LESS THAN 20 minutes.

total money that exchanged hands, $0.00!

210320 HPOI
210320 HPOI
210320 HPOI
210320 HPOI
210320 HPOI
210320 HPOI
210320 HPOI
210320 HPOI
210320 HPOI
210320 HPOI
210320 paperwork
210320 paperwork

it’s SO! MUCH! EASIER!! when i know what i’m doing, have done “the needful”, and have everything ready BEFORE i show up… 😎

and, i think i may have enough incense, now… 😉

a semblance of normalcy

i am fully vaccinated, which means that i can get out and do stuff without anxiety… and, because of the fact that we moved (last year at this time 😒) i’ve got a bunch of places that are a 5-minute drive (or a half-hour walk along a busy rural highway) away from home, which i have been, more or less, unable to “explore” because of the fact that i wasn’t fully vaccinated.

today i went to big bend park in maple valley, and walked along the old railroad grade. the railroad grade actually cut off a part of the cedar river, which, i imagine, was the original “big bend” that they’re talking about.

here are some things i saw.

210309 old utility pole
210309 old utility pole
210309 old utility pole
210309 old utility pole
210309 bounded chaotic mixing producing strange stability
210309 bounded chaotic mixing producing strange stability

i really like the place we’re currently living, and i REALLY don’t want to move again (ever, in my life, if possible), but if i were to allow that possibility, here’s a house i wouldn’t mind living in, and it’s not even that far from where i live now. 😉

210309 fantasy castle
210309 fantasy castle

and, finally, here are some signs that are posted in this “neighbourhood” park… 😉

210309 what to do when confronted by wild animals
210309 what to do when confronted by wild animals
210309 impossible logs
210309 impossible logs

snowpocalypse 2021

11½ inches of snow in 24 hours.

it’s raining now, but it’s supposed to start snowing again after dark, which is in about an hour…

i walked out to the main road. it’s clear and wet, with patches of slush. the snow accumulation off the road is pretty similar to what we have here… but in order to get out to the main road, you have to drive UP a hill that kids have been sledding on for two days. it’s possible to drive up the hill, but only barely.

#FacesInThings
#FacesInThings

yep, it snowed…

210213 snow and downed trees, front yard
210213 snow and downed trees, front yard

and, because of the fact that they’re there, we also had a couple of downed trees. they didn’t hit anything, and they’re not across the road, but it’s not over yet, and i haven’t been out further than the mailbox — it had come open, somehow, and was three-quarters full of snow, which was on top of the letter that i was hoping the letter carrier was going to pick up — so i don’t know what “the real world” is like… supposedly, we have a “micro-climate” around our neighbourhood, and the weather is substantially different about a mile away, on the main road.

this is the one of the… i’m not sure whether it’s an “advantage” or it’s a “danger”… of living in the remote wilderness.

at this point, it’s not an awful lot different than any other day, during COVID. 😒

but the dogs love it.

210213 snowy kestrel
210213 snowy kestrel

creativity…?

i recorded the tuba part for a collaborative effort to create the panto 2020 “Welcome Song”, but since we can’t actually meet to rehearse, we’re recording the parts, which, presumably, will be together enough that they will be able to be combined together, and then emailed to the people who have come to the pantos in the past.

i experienced the clarinet part, and the “click track”, which was kiki playing the song on the ukulele and singing, along with a metronome. without the click track (which, i’m assuming is the ultimate goal), the clarinet part and the tuba part ended up staying together… mostly… and the times when it seemed like we were going to lose the beat, miraculously, found the beat again in a lot less time than it would have taken if we had been in a live rehearsal.

but it’s really weird playing the tuba part without all of the other parts, only knowing that they will be put together at a later date.

Heirophany
Heirophany
there’s a possibility that thaddeus and i are going to resurrect “Heirophany”, which is me playing the harmonic flute and twiddling with electronic gadgets, and thaddeus playing guitar, and twiddling with electronic gadgets. we released a 12 minute long single — with a fantastic cover, which is a picture of a ‘cello on fire 😉👍 — a couple of years ago, and then didn’t do anything else, but, at this point, we can do it “socially distanced”, and i’ve even been thinking of designing a mask for the harmonic flute, anyway, that will make it so that i can play when it’s windy… only, now, it’s so that i can play while i’m masked… and it’s something where we can play for other people, and, potentially, make some money at it at the same time.

#drumpf still hasn’t conceded, and his lawsuits are getting tossed out as fast as he can file ’em, but, ultimately, i think he’s going to try to make an end run around losing the popular vote and the electoral vote by “declaring” the election invalid, refusing to accept the results, and going to the supreme court (which he has stacked with sycophants) to make the final decision. he has made statements within the past 24 hours that include “just get rid of the ballots”, and “there will be no transition”, and “biden can’t enter the white house without proving that his ballots are legal”, which don’t make it sound particularly like he’s intending to go anywhere. and, while i would like nothing better than to watch as he was dragged out by his heels, kicking and screaming like a three-year-old having a tantrum (which, i have no doubt, would happen, if it came to that), i seriously doubt that any president that comes after that would have any chance of pulling the country back together again any time within my lifetime, i don’t care who he is, or how fast he impliments universal health care and universal basic income.

so…

the fence is (allegedly) being fixed on thursday, by the guy who is the friend of the neighbour who is (still) being a dick about paying for the fence, despite the fact that the dead tree which destroyed it was on his property. 😒

the guy who is (allegedly) fixing the fence has already run down a whole list of (bogus) complaints he had about the current fence — i get the impression that he’s not particularly impressed with the quality or consistency of the fence materials, despite the fact that we had the fence made by a different company than the one which made the gates, and that the whole thing was built during the peak of the first round of COVID…

but i get the very strong impression that the guy is going to do everything possible to get away with doing a halfway job and begging off, never to be heard from again, which is why i’m going to be keeping an eye on the work progress, when it happens. 😒

election day is (finally) tomorrow. in spite of the fact that he was impeached, we managed to survive (barely) four years of #drumpf, and i’m not sure, even now, that we’re going to vote him out tomorrow… and, even if we do, i’m even less sure that he’ll leave without making a BIG fuss, and/or flagrantly cheating… and even if we do manage to eject him into the sun, there’s going to be A LOT of #MAGA #chuds who will be stubbornly unwilling to accept it, and even if we are actually able to eject him into the sun, they’re not going to be so “easy” to deal with, nor will they just “go away”, once the solar ejecting has actually been accomplished.

i keep saying it’ll take us at least a hundred years to recover from #drumpf, and i’m not sure we have a hundred years left, even if we do, miraculously, make him and his cronies just vanish.

in other news, i made a new page for the Incense Of The Month Club, but i can’t figure out how to put the background image on it that i want, so it’s not linked anywhere, yet. i bought a 1½” diameter button press (because why not), and now i’ve got to round up some civic organisations which want buttons for some campaign or something.

also, i never heard back from kent.

good. 😒

1½" diameter buttons
1½” diameter buttons
pins & buttons
pins & buttons

the end of (this) saga

okay, as i reported here, the HPOI arrived on friday, at 1730. i went to WFS, but was informed that i had to get the shipment cleared through US customs, before i could pick it up.

customs operates under “normal” business hours, i.e. 9-to-5, M thru F, so i figured i was going to have to wait until monday.

the “carrier certificate” that WFS gave me said that i had to pay an ISC fee, which worked out to $89 if i paid it online, or $125 if i paid it in person, so, while i was waiting — saturday and sunday — i took the opportunity to pay it online, so that i would have yet another impediment taken care of before monday.

the “carrier certificate” also, CLEARLY said that the date that storage charges started accruing was 201012, which was further impetus to get things rolling as quickly as possible.

note, that THIS ENTIRE TIME i have been getting EXTREMELY CONFLICTED messages about whether or not i would need a broker. at this point, everything i have heard leads me to believe that i would NOT need a broker to pick up my shipment of incense.

this morning, i contacted customs, got their new address (because they just moved, and nobody at WFS knew where), and went down to clear my shipment.

when i got there, i talked with a US customs agent, who told me that, because my MAWB said that the value of the shipment was more than $800, but less than $1,000, i would have to have a broker clear the shipment.

way back when i was arranging all of this, i specifically remember (backed up by email from 200824) arun giving me precise numbers: “USD 7.45 PER DOZENS”, which amounts to $357.60 for 48 dozen boxes. i also specifically remember (backed up by a different email from 200824), arun telling me “Please note Air freight is additional.”, so when he sent me a proforma invoice that said $986.40, i presumed that it meant “$357.60 for the incense, and $628.80 for shipping”… but it wasn’t itemised, and i overlooked that point.

i SHOULD HAVE gotten an itemised MAWB, but i didn’t.

so, i spent some time on the phone, talking with brokers, who quoted me around $400 just to get my foot in the door, and then i connected with lisa, from Frontier North America — a very nice, helpful lady who is going to get my business the next time around — who assured me that, because i was actually paying more for shipping than i was for the actual product, that she would clear my shipment, and provide a surety bond, for $182.22, so i said go for it, and half an hour later, my shipment was cleared through customs.

miracle. 😒

then, i went back to the airport, to WFS, who informed me, because i didn’t have a broker, who could clear my shipment on friday, after business hours (despite the fact that customs was CLOSED for “normal people” like me), that i had to pay a $110 storage fee — which was EXACTLY the thing that i was trying to AVOID by picking up the paperwork on friday, after normal business hours — and then they had a problem charging me the storage fee, because i had already paid the ISC fee, and they couldn’t charge me as a “guest” because the computer wouldn’t let them create two different accounts with the same MAWB number. finally, they told me that their web site wasn’t meant for people with iphones, which meant that i would have to go home to use my computer at home to “set up an account” so that they could charge me a storage fee, before i could pick up a shipment that i was already there to pick up… 😒

 

 

 

 

 

 

fortunately, after talking to two other managers, i finally talked the third manager into waiving the $110 storage fee, and, after scanning my drivers’ license (because my passport wouldn’t fit in their automatic scanning device 😒) they “gave me permission” to pick up my HPOI.

and i managed to get through the whole thing without swearing, losing my temper, or stomping out of various offices, as good as it would have felt.

201012 HPOI paperwork
201012 HPOI paperwork
201012 HPOI
201012 HPOI
201012 HPOI
201012 HPOI
201012 HPOI
201012 HPOI
201012 HPOI
201012 HPOI

now i’ve got a web site to update. 😉

march -> october

we moved in to our new house in march.

in october, approximately eight months later, i saw my first deer in our front yard.

201010 deer in the front yard
201010 deer in the front yard

according to moe, there have been deer in our front yard, and our back yard, before now, but this is the first time i’ve seen them.

FUCK 2020!

our BRAND NEW, not even three months old yet, 6-foot security fence, has been destroyed by a falling tree.

200925 FUCK 2020!
200925 FUCK 2020!

200925 FUCK 2020!
200925 FUCK 2020!
200925 FUCK 2020!
200925 FUCK 2020!

it was a dead tree, on the neighbour’s yard, that fell… it didn’t even have the decency to fall all at once; it broke off about 20 feet up (remember, it was dead), and the broken part fell on our fence… it didn’t hit the shed, and nobody got hurt, which is a good thing, but still…

FUCK 2020‼‼

heksenbotar!

the new house has a slime mold in the back yard!

200806 heksenbotar
200806 heksenbotar
200806 slime-mold
200806 slime-mold
200806 slime-mold
200806 slime-mold
200806 slime-mold
200806 slime-mold
200806 slime-mold
200806 slime-mold

apparently, it is triggered by “over-watering”, among other things… which makes sense, because i have run the sprinkler in or around that location for 4 days, now, including two days ago, when i “forgot” and ran the sprinkler for two or three hours… and last night it rained, so… 😉

200806 heksenbotar
200806 heksenbotar

in dutch it’s called “heksenbotar” which means “witches butter”. in scandanavian folklore, it is referred to as the “vomit of troll cats“. in english it’s called “dog’s vomit”. scientifically, it is called Fuligo septica. more information at Fuligo septica, the dog vomit slime mold.

comet NEOWISE

200719 comet NEOWISE
200719 comet NEOWISE

comet NEOWISE, as seen from approximately 47°18’16.5″N 121°06’07.4″W. the next time we’ll see it is in 6,700 years.

it was visible with the naked eye, but this photo was taken by my wife and her awesome camera which is controlled by her phone… the camera and the phone are separate objects, linked by bluetooth. she can make adjustments to the camera without actually touching the camera, which is essential when you’re talking about extended exposure times. this particular exposure was around 15 seconds…

also, the lack of having to develop the film and make prints before discovering how awesome (or shitty) the picture is, adds A LOT to the whole experience. 😉

which reminds me…

XKCD - Slide Trombone
XKCD – Slide Trombone

a long time ago — probably mid-1970s or thereabouts — i was at the Marrowstone Music Festival at Fort Flagler State Park (which should give those people who know about such things a much clearer idea of exactly when this occurred) for a two week “intensive”, where we learned, rehearsed, an at the end of the two weeks, performed a concert of orchestral works.

a lot of the trombone parts were mostly rests, with occasional blasts of fanfare, or glissandos, or other suchlike “trombone” things. trombones in a classical orchestra have a reputation for being lazy, and jokers, but that’s only because we have nothing else to do! nobody writes for trombones in a classical orchestra setting!

it’s true! beethoven, the quintessential classical composer, wrote NINE symphonies for “full orchestra”, but he only wrote one piece that had parts for trombones, the Three Equale for Four Trombones, which is one of the most beautiful pieces in existence.

for the most part, the classical period was before what we know as the modern “trombone” existed, and, at best, the “trombone” parts that exist are usually parts for serpent or ophecleide which have been transposed.

after one morning rehearsal — where the trombones had rests and didn’t play at all for the 4½ hours of the morning rehearsal — we were all feeling a little punchy as we went to lunch. for some time, i had been warning the other trombonists that, if they left their instruments out, on the stage, when we weren’t there, something bad could happen to their instruments… i was thinking something along the lines of “someone bumped into your horn and now the horn has a disabling slide injury that will cost several hundred dollars to repair” or something like that, and i always put MY horn away, when i was not actively holding it in my hand, but, despite my almost constant, annoying reminders, the other trombonists left their horns on the stage as we went to lunch.

so, i developed a plan…

while the other trombone players were eating lunch, i attacked their horns.

trombones that have “attachments” (i.e. every trombone that is LOWER THAN a “tenor” trombone) have at least one valve, which lowers the trombone’s pitch. when that valve is not activated (most of the time), the trombone plays in B-flat, but when the valve is activated, it plays in F (or some other key, depending on other things). most trombone players that have a valve, only use it occasionally, to play notes that they would, otherwise, be unable to play reliably. the valve section of tubing is like a separate little bit of the trombone, that is only used occasionally. it has its own tuning slide, and, when the horn is being played without the valve, the extra tubing is sealed off from the main part of the instrument.

what i did was remove the tuning slides for the valve sections of their horns, and filled the valve sections with water. then, turning the horns upside down, i replaced the valve section tuning slide, and placed the horn, right side up, on the stand, so that it looked like it hadn’t been touched.

when they came back from lunch, they picked up their horns, blew a few notes, and then cycled the valve, which released the water into the main part of their horns…

BLLLOOOOP!!!

then they “emptied their spit valves”, thinking that their horns just had water that accumulates when they went to lunch… after about 5 minutes of emptying their spit valves, they gave up, and took the slides off and dumped the rest of the water out of their instruments…

all the while i was busting a gut trying NOT to laugh, which, among other things, would have disturbed the rest of the people in the rehearsal, some of whom were actually rehearsing by this time…

and, you know what?

they never left their horns out on the stage after that… 🤣

pitchers

string ball
string ball

this is my current string ball. it’s about 5 years old, and it already looks different because i’ve added string to it. i use a very loose definition of “string”: there’s some metal cable and a fair amount of plastic in there as well… it’s a “string-like” ball, in that regard, but at this point nobody would know unless they actually unwound it… which, under the worst of circumstances, is very unlikely.

in the past, i have been the owner of a couple of string balls that were considerably bigger… one was big enough that, when i was holding it in my lap, you couldn’t see my head. i’m hoping that this one will reach that size, or bigger, eventually. 😉

outside our new house
outside our new house

our new house has a whole bunch of interesting things that were left behind by the previous owners. i get the impression that i would NOT have gotten along with them in the slightest (they were #drumpf-supporters), but this is one of the things they left behind. it’s better that way.

office
office

this is my office. it’s also the music room.

office
office

music & computers
music & computers

this is the music room part. i’ve got my piano and my sythesizer set up, for the first time since i got married (which was 22 years ago), and, because of the fact that i bought a mixer in the interim, i now have it set up so that i can use the synthesizer (a yamaha DX7) as a synthesizer AND as a MIDI-controller. as a MIDI-controller, i’ve got old, familiar Reason on my laptop, and i’ve got a bunch of stuff that’s MIDI-controllable on my tablet, which i haven’t played with at all, because i haven’t had room to set it up. i got the DX7 a SuperMAX+ upgrade a couple of years ago, which was also after the battery died, so i’m going to have to learn how to use it all over again from scratch, and i’ve got to reload all of the stock noises (which i’ve got, thanks to a MIDI-controlled patch library on my laptop), but that’s part of the “fun” of COVID19 lockdown… i’ve got the time to do that sort of thing…

this is the result of the “shakedown-cruise” of the audio studio, called The Diambola Mikado Fun Pack Mix #1*. it’s made from ONE of the samples in The Diambola Mikado Fun Pack by Ergo Phizmiz, which is taken from his work, called The Diambola Mikado.

200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA
200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA

last month i was going crazy, so monique took me to see the National Wild Horses Monument in quincy.

200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA
200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA
200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA
200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA
200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA
200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA

200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA
200607 National Wild Horses Monument, Quincy, WA
it was on the top of a bluff overlooking the columbia river, in eastern washington.

milestones
milestones

milestones
milestones

i don’t know why this photo came out so fuzzy, compared to the other ones… but, unfortunately, it’s the only one i got of this particular milestone, so you might have to squint to see it…

200623 Celebration Park, Auburn, WA
200623 Celebration Park, Auburn, WA

the other day i had occasion to wander through Celebration Park in auburn. when i first lived in auburn, in the early 1970s, what is now celebration park was a huge, essentially vacant lot that had some abandoned businesses on it. nobody wanted it as residential property, because it was in the flight path for the airport. at some point, in the distant past (before 1960) i think the property had been an airfield, or something like that, but, by the time i got there, that was long gone, as well. in the ’90s, when i was in bellingham, the city bought the property and created celebration park, but it still has a lot of the same aspects that made it a vacant lot, including a lot of wooded areas where homeless people camp, and drug addicts shoot up…

which is where i found this… interesting… little tidbit.

200623 Celebration Park, Auburn, WA
200623 Celebration Park, Auburn, WA

200704 Ross Lake
200704 Ross Lake

on the 4th of july, we went on a road trip, so that the dogs wouldn’t freak out because of all the fireworks. we went through the Ross Lake National Recreation Area and saw this waterfall.
BOUNDED CHAOTIC MIXING PRODUCES STRANGE STABILITY!

i have been around the sun 60 times
i have been around the sun 60 times

my 60th time around the sun was celebrated on saturday. never, in my wildest imaginations did i ever think i was going to be 60 years old… in fact, my imaginings never exceeded age 40, which means that i’ve been living new and unimagined territory for 20 years now.

we celebrated by having a “gathering” in our back yard. kiki, sasha, stuart, d. barnes and jesse, his son, and hobbit and lucifer, his… partner? i’m not sure exactly what their status is, but they’ve been together for 1719 years or so… and they all brought musical instruments, and we had a “jam session” in the back yard. monique made the german chocolate cake (my favourite), and cupcakes with raspberry butter cream frosting, made with raspberries from our back yard…

it was good to see those folks, after such a long time, and it was really good to play music with them.

* i am MORTIFIED! i read the title as “The Diambola Mikado” and named my piece “The Diambola Mikado…” and then i find out that the name is actually “The Dimbola Mikado”… i’ve already released my mix, and even presented it to mr. phizmiz — who didn’t say anything, which makes me wonder whether he’s just being polite, or whether he didn’t notice… oh GAWD, whatever am i to do??? 😭

okay, i don’t usually do this, but…

i’ve never seen the movie “Soylent Green” (although i have read the book on which it was “loosely based”, called Make Room! Make Room!), but i’ve heard all the quotes, and seen a bunch of youtube excerpts…

so, when they first came out with a product called “soylent”, i was skeptical, to say the least.

but then, i had occasion to start drinking a “protein shake” on a regular basis, and i discovered that, while ALL the others had “sugar” as one of their first five ingredients, soylent contains NO sugar… yes, it has other sweeteners, but they are not within the first five ingredients.

and it tastes good.

then, they came out with soylent mint and chocolate, in a green bottle… “soylent green”…

i’m sure some executive, in some penthouse office somewhere, is chortling with evil glee at that one. 😼

and it tastes FANTASTIC!

seriously, i could get addicted to this stuff!

Soylent Green - chocolate & mint - YUM!
Soylent Green – chocolate & mint – YUM!

i realise it’s got a name that gives you nightmares, but it’s really good! you should try it… in part, BECAUSE of the fact that it’s name gives you nightmares! 😎👍

creativity… at last!

i finished a sculpture, yesterday.

i’m tempted to call it “Sweet Darling”, because that’s what the first, random person i didn’t know said when i showed it to her…

200625 sculpture
200625 sculpture

but it’s not particularly appropriate, and she was a high school music teacher for 30 years, so it may not be an entirely accurate critique…

200625 close-up
200625 close-up
200625 close-up
200625 close-up
200625 close-up
200625 close-up
200625 close-up
200625 close-up
200625 close-up
200625 close-up

maybe “Bob”-o-phone, or Tele-“Bob”… 😉

in response to the murder of George Floyd by police

200531 Serve and Protect sculpture, Salt Lake City
200531 Serve and Protect sculpture, Salt Lake City

increasingly violent protests have been escalating globally. if we had all listened to colin kaepernick, way back when, we might have avoided this.

meanwhile, drumpf has issued an executive order making antifa a “terrorist organisation” — meaningless, as antifa isn’t an “organisation”, but convenient, because now drumpf can claim anybody is antifa, and have them arrested — and inciting violence on twitter with rhetoric recycled from the republican side of the ’60s-era race riots.

and “when the looting starts, the shooting starts” means the same thing 50 years ago as it does now.

COVID19 has facilitated increasing fascism. it’s just a matter of time before drumpf declares martial law, and/or someone assassinates him.

something that would be supremely ironic, in drumpf’s case: “assassinate” is a word that begins with not one, but two “ass”es…

chops

no, not Chopp’s, chops… the signature stamps that are traditionally used on chinese artwork.

i got some.

chops
chops – one says “SHALEMENDUO” and the other one says “RONG”

the one on the left says 沙了門多 which is prounounced SHĀ-LE-MÉN-DUŌ which is the closest the guy could get to “SALAMANDIR”.

SHĀ-LE-MÉN-DUŌ means “SAND-UP-DOOR-MANY”, which is, essentially, meaningless. it’s just a name chop.

"WRONG" or "DIFFERENT"
“WRONG” or “DIFFERENT”
the one on the right says 蝾 which is pronounced RÓNG, and it means “SALAMANDER”.

and i think it’s kind of interesting that the word for “SALAMANDER” is RÓNG

i made a chop several years ago, that says “CHIGAU” which means “DIFFERENT” or “WRONG”… but it’s backwards.

before the mushrooms kick in…

#drumpf is in the midst of impeachment, but it doesn’t appear to be making a whole lot of difference (thus, the mushrooms), but there have been some good things happening.

i have been getting A LOT of incense orders: 13 since the first of october, compared to 5 or fewer per month from january to september. also, i’ve gotten more orders from england and germany, since the first of october, than i have in the entire year previous. i still don’t entirely know what’s happening, but the end result is that i’ve now got more than $4,000 in my hybrid elephant account… which is somewhat startling…

191102 moe
191102 moe
last weekend, moe and i took a mini-vacation to san diego, for one night. ostensibly, moe had to rack up enough airline miles to qualify for “gold status”, because she has been travelling A LOT recently — mostly because of her newfound notariety as the author of a revolutionary book on animal behaviour — which, naturally, means that i have to stay at home and look after the pets.

seriously, folks… i’m married to a famous author! this week, she’s staying at a hotel in times square! it’s probably about as close to famous as i’m ever going to be! 😎

so moe decided that she would find a pet sitter and we would go off on our own (which i really appreciate). she chose san diego because she has been there before, and i haven’t, but i realised that san diego is the home of not one, but two outlets of the Village Hat Shop, which is where i bought my red fedora, and it is also home to the naval amphibious base coronado, which is a building shaped like a swastika.

i saw where it was when we were flying in, but i didn’t actually see the building because we were at too shallow an angle, and you pretty much have to be directly overhead to actually see that it’s shaped like a swastika…

so we flew to san diego to go hat shopping. i bought a pork pie made out of paper (a paper pork pie), and exhibited a great deal of self restraint becauuse i really wanted to take home about half the shop.

we actually stayed on coronado island

Hotel del Coronado - you see that large, famous, historic hotel over there? where we stayed is right behind it, in the Glorietta Bay Inn.
Hotel del Coronado – you see that large, famous, historic hotel over there? where we stayed is right behind it, in the Glorietta Bay Inn.

we stayed in a hotel room that is so “far above our station” that i almost got a nosebleed. 😉

and we flew home the next day, which was sunday.

i went busking yesterday, which was good, despite the fact that we only made about $20 a piece for 2 hours of busking. today i took two packages to the post office to ship out, and went to the dispensary, where i spent it all on weed and weed-related products.

and no w m y jmushrooms have kikckedk in ahd i heeed to be g oijn go ut for a wal,,k oris oemething lll…. 😁

woooof…

so the feedback that we got from deni, regarding the oregon fair was that we “weren’t colourful enough”…

190902 not colourful enough
190902 not colourful enough

this is a selfie i took on the last day of the fair.

i was wearing my red hat, blue sunglasses, a rainbow tie-dyed hawaiian shirt, a multicoloured tibetan vest, a kilt with a bright purple band, PLAYING A TUBA AND SITTING ON THE GROUND‼‼‼

if this isn’t “colourful” enough for him, i’m sorry, but that’s all i can do… 😒

we’ve emailed deni with our “list of demands” for the yakima fair. he hasn’t responded.

he has until thursday, which is a week before we would have to leave for the yakima fair.

if he doesn’t respond before then, we’re not going, which would be 100% fine with me.

if he does, we’ll have to see what he has to say about our list of demands before we’re going to decide.

i’m not holding my breath.

woof!

i got back from the oregon state fair yesterday. things went as follows:

we left at approximately 10:00 am, the morning of thursday, august 22nd, on our way to salem, oregon. on our way, before we got to the I5-I205 split, just north of vancouver, washington, we stopped to meet deni, the guy who hired us to busk. we picked up a preliminary check for $500, and got some advice concerning our appearances — “shave yer scruff, this is a family-oriented show”, and “be colourful”, were the gist of it. there was no inkling of how absolutely pointless this would be, but we were blissfully ignorant, and pressed on.

we got to the fairgrounds and almost immediately discovered that the guy we had been told (by deni) to contact, was no longer working for the fair, and we should contact another guy, who turned out to be joe, but he wasn’t available, so we proceded to our hotel.

the hotel had two criteria: it had to be “convenient”, and it had to be “cheap”. it was both of those things. we were, literally, less than a mile and a half from the fairgrounds — i walked almost the entire distance the first morning we were there, and didn’t realise it because i decided to go back before the road curved around so that i could see the fairground. it was also “cheap” in that it cost less than $900 for an 11-night stay with two beds… but it wasn’t particularly clean: the kitchenette and the refrigerator had mysteriously consistent yellow stains, the shower-curtain rod looked like someone had tried, and failed, to do pull-ups on it, the shower curtain itself was infested with black mold, the sheets and towels were stained, and the staff that i interacted with, with the exception of the lady who checked us in, and a different lady who checked us out, were surly and inconsistent, yelling at us for smoking on the breezeway outside our room, but smoking, herself, in an area that has a sign designating it as a “no smoking” area. for a hotel that had two criteria, however, it fit the bill adequately, and we didn’t spend much time there, apart from sleeping, anyway.

we were supposed to show up at 10:30 am, friday, for indoctrination an important meeting with joe, where we were going to be shown the fairgrounds, the “green room”, get our ID badges and parking permit, and other important stuff. the GPS told us to take 17th ave. to the “red gate”, but 17th ave. was blocked off with a sign that said “vendors exempt”, and we had been told that we were “vendors”, so i pulled around the barricades and was immediately confronted by a harried woman with blonde hair, who said i couldn’t go that way. i said “we’re vendors”, to which she responded, “you can’t go this way” and proceded to give us directions that took us, essentially “around the block”, so that we were approaching from the other direction. we thought it was a little odd, but we didn’t have our ID badges or parking permit, so i said “fuck it” and drove around the block… and, it turned out, that it was, in fact, to the other end of 17th street, and we encountered the “red gate” almost immediately… but we didn’t have a parking permit, so the drone wouldn’t let us park in the VIP lot, which was where we had been told to park. we parked along the street, and inquired at the “red gate information booth” — it said so, with a big sign that could be seen from the other end of 17th street, which caused similar sorts of confusion for two more days, until i decided not to deal with the situation any longer, and drove around the block without even stopping to discuss the matter with the harried looking woman any longer. eventually, we were told, that 17th street is only one way, during the fair, but there weren’t any signs indicating that, and there were other vehicles travelling the “wrong direction” on 17th, but, apparently, WE were “not supposed to”… which is one of the reasons i gave up trying to get a reason out of anybody…

anyway, we parked, and, eventually, met up with joe and brian, a magician, who had also been hired by deni. there was supposed to be a third guy, pug, but his car had broken down somewhere outside of salem, and he was still trying to get there, so we did the orientation without him. joe piled all of us onto a “gator” — basically a large, motorised, all-terrain tractor/cart thingy — and showed us some places we could, potentially, busk. he also showed us the “green room” which was an unlocked and unguarded room at the back of the stadium, where he said we could store our instruments…

fat chance…

dole whip
and then he took us back to the red gate, and gave us our parking permit and our ID badges, and set us free to decide where we were going to busk for 4 hours. we decided on the last place we looked at, which was across from a dole whip booth, in a place where, we figured, we would get A LOT of traffic, and we were not disappointed… however it was also right behind the big stadium, and about 50 yards away from another stage — the Spirit of Oregon Stage — both of which had EXTREMELY loud bands at what seemed like random times, sometimes overlapping, and, while we COULD busk there, we, literally, couldn’t be heard most of the time…
JIGGLE FOOT!!!
and that’s not to mention the “Jiggle Foot” devices — enormous, brightly coloured feet, barrels, or logs, in which one puts quarters in order to cause a platform attached to a “magic-fingers”-like thing to jiggle, allegedly “rejuvanating” your feet. we had to do some creative re-imagining of how the jiggle-foot devices were plugged in, in order to have enough power for our amps, and for the jiggle-feet. and then one of them broke: first it jiggled REALLY LOUDLY, and then it stopped working at all, which caused many people to complain about it, which caused the fair security guards to come around, discover our creative re-imagining, and summarily unplug our amps, so that, even when there weren’t bands playing, we couldn’t be heard above the crowd noise.

and then, joe disappeared, and was replaced by britanny, until saturday the 31st, when he showed up again.

Howlin Hobbit and Washboard Willie
Howlin Hobbit and Washboard Willie
somewhere in the chaos, hobbit heard some music that he found familiar, which, it turned out, was being made by a fellow named washboard willie, who hobbit busked with at the pike place market, 30 years ago. every day after that, we were visited by washboard willy and his rig, as they wandered by.

we put up with the noise until sunday the 25th, when we requested a different place to play, as we were pushing what we thought was an 8:30 closing time (which turned out to be incorrect, yet another screw-up), and we had only JUST completed our “contractual obligation” of 4 hours of busking. we were given the opportunity to busk under a tree, in the vicinity of a “dippin’ dots” booth and the booth of a hmong fabric artist, and right under the uphill slope of the northwest terminus for the “fair lift”, the oregon state fair’s answer to the “sky ride” from the washington state fair. there wasn’t quite as large a crowd of people constantly going by, but at least we could play without getting blasted away by disco turned up to 11…

Peanut Envy on the Fair Lift
Peanut Envy on the Fair Lift
monday the 26th was a lot more relaxed. we had the pop-up, but we didn’t need it, because of the shade from the tree. i asked, and was informed that they “would allow” us to take our instruments on the fair lift, so, tuesday, we did our first set on the fair lift, which was kind of amusing, although it was more than a little cramped.

Peanut Envy on the fair lift
Peanut Envy on the fair lift
Peanut Envy on the fair lift
Peanut Envy on the fair lift
Peanut Envy on the fair lift
Peanut Envy on the fair lift

by wednesday the 28th, it was pretty clear that we weren’t making ANYWHERE NEAR as much in tips as we could have been making at home, at the market, so we made some signs to encourage people. that was when we found out that, in spite of the fact that we had been assured otherwise, and we had actually submitted a “publicity photo” for them, there actually WERE NOT signs at the gates, indicating our presence, and suggesting that people who encountered us give us money in exchange for us entertaining them. the signs that we made, made the difference between $17 total, in tips for 4 hours of performance — which is worse than the worst day i have EVER had at the market, by a long shot — and $97 total, in tips for 4 hours of performance, which is an adequate day at the market for 2 hours of performance… but it still wasn’t a lot, which was really discouraging.

apart from not making very much in tips (a little more than $500 total, for 11 days, which works out to about $5.96 per hour, per person), the rest of the fair was pretty uneventful. we settled into a routine of doing a half hour set, with a half hour break, and then four 45-minute sets separated by half hour breaks, and then finishing with a half hour set around 6:00 pm… except for sunday, the 1st, when we were feeling rested enough that we had decided to play a 7th set, because joe (remember him) had said that we were okay until 8:45, when all the entertainment crew would be required for a fire show… but we had just started the 7th set, at 7:15 pm, when a different guy showed up and said that if we didn’t pack up and load out RIGHT THEN, that we wouldn’t be able to load out until 11:30, because of the fire show…

and, after that, we never saw joe again, so we don’t know why it happened that way… but it was just another frustration that made me VERY glad to get back home.

and then, on monday the 2nd, hobbit started losing it. i am sure he was tired, and fact that he has the worst case of sleep-apnea i have ever heard, AND his diet (which consisted largely of whiskey and cigarettes) probably didn’t help matters, but, during our first set, hobbit started out playing his ukulele and singing, and then sort of faded out, started singing gibberish, and then went to sleep… THREE TIMES!!! the first time, i thought it was kind of an odd thing that i had never seen from hobbit before, but by the third time, i was seriously concerned that he was having a stroke or something, so i flagged down a roving EMT, who put hobbit through his paces, and tested his blood pressure, which was 180/90. there wasn’t much he could do, and by that time, hobbit was complaining he was really okay, so he went away, and came back a couple hours later to check. hobbit really was okay, but i’ve kind of got a short fuse when it comes to potential brain injuries.

by the time tuesday came around, i was really glad to leave our sleazy hotel and get back to my own bed.

and, if everything goes the way i think it will, we (meaning hobbit and i) will do it all again, in yakima, in a couple of weeks…

whee…

some random hippie, 2019

fair was fair:

i didn’t camp where i wanted to (right next to the stage), because my tent was too large, so i camped where i was last year, which was down in the gully behind the stage; i connected with people i only see once a year, including the bearded guy from the mighty tiny puppet theatre, whose name i don’t remember; we didn’t play at the ritz (again), however i took three saunas and got 4 tokens, one from the hat after the show (i now have 35 tokens);

2019 OCF 50th anniversary
2019 OCF 50th anniversary
i connected with the hat-lady, who said that her life had fallen apart, and then she wasn’t sure i would like my (wonderful, amazing, outrageous) hat, which is why it took her eight months to send it to me… i told her she doesn’t know me very well, and gave her many hugs to reassure her that i do, indeed, love THE HELL out of my WONDERFUL, AMAZING, OUTRAGEOUS HAT — 😍 — i stayed up way later than i should have, multiple days in a row, and i only slept through one cue, i didn’t take any pictures, because, for the most part, they would be the same pictures i have taken since i first started going to the fair, i gave away 60 “Step Into Panto-Land” buttons, mostly to people who have no idea what it meant, the electronics for my harmonic flute decided to malfunction in a way that i have to be at home to fix, so i didn’t play my harmonic flute more than a little bit, although i learned how to play another style of end-blown flute, and i’m really excited to try new stuff with PVC as a result, i was part of the group that was disinvited to the memorial service for dead fair family (the whole Fremont Players troupe was disinvited, after having exchanged numerous emails with the people organising it, which indicated that we would, indeed, be a part of the program, prior to the fair), and i don’t know why, nor will i ever, probably…

nobody knows what happened to the totem pole, that i talked to, and one person told me not to bring it up. 😒

however, barring other, cooler things happening at the same time, i’ll more than likely go back again next year. i’m still open to other suggestions, however. 😉

some random hippie, 2019
some random hippie, 2019
some random hippie, 2019
some random hippie, 2019

Some Random Hippie, 2018
Some Random Hippie, 2017
Some Random Hippie, 2016
Some Random Hippie, 2013
Some Random Hippie, 2012
Some Random Hippie, 2011

interesting? unusual?

approximately 6:30 pm — so far it’s been interesting? unusual?

i have been, and continue to be high, in certain ways (clumsy typing among them), and i continue to “see things” that are there, perhaps in ways that i might not if i were not “altered”, but…

190605 i’m not looking directly at the sun, my camera is! 😜

(also, the previous one was taken yesterday, so it may not count)

190606 three faces

what, you don’t see three faces? they’ve been looking out of my neighbour’s fence for a few years, now…

190606 imagine…

imagine a torso on that pair of legs… 😉

then, when i got home from my walk, i got a letter in the mail from the pike place market foundation…

190606 TINA CHOPP IS GOD!

it’s as “official” as it can be, at this point. they say “This stainless steel Charm will dance and shine on the new MarketFront Plaza for generations”, but they said the same thing about my tile, back in the ’80s, and look what happened there…

i’m “high”, but it’s different. instead of being euphoric, i’m depressed… but high. things “feel” okay, but i know that, when i am not “high”, they’re actually going to be a lot worse than i have allowed myself to imagine, because i am “high”…

it’s not an unpleasant sensation, but i’m not sure a repeat of it would be entirely welcome.

the PHBFH

i saw someone who i believe to be the PHBFH today, at 11:41 am at the folklife festival, at the seattle centergrounds.

190526 The PHBFH
190526 The PHBFH

i’m not 100% sure it’s her, but i’m about 98% sure. i walked past her, on my way to play at the mural amphitheatre, and recognised her immediately. i’m not sure if she recognised me immediately, but when i tried to work my way around to a point where i could take a better picture, she recognised me and ran away, which adds to the probability that it was her. also she did a little ballet pose before she disappeared around a corner, which further adds to the probability that it was her.

when i texted the photo to ezra, he said that he wasn’t able to tell for sure, but that it looked “like her style”. he also said that it is unusual for her to be in the city without showing up at ezra’s home… or in bellingham… i also noticed that she was wearing what looked like leather boots, which is uncharacteristic for the PHBFH that i know, but not entirely out of the question, since it has been almost 30 years since i’ve actually seen her.

it was creepy seeing her… 😱

but she looked healthy, strong, and happy, which makes me glad.

buskingniksub

190511 salamandir, by jon leach
190511 salamandir, by jon leach
when you hang around the pike place market enough, particularly if you don’t look exactly like pretty much everybody else, you will eventually end up having your photo taken by one of the multitude of street photographers who descend in droves on the market thinking that they will get “that shot” which will propell them into the realm of famous photographers like ansel adams or robert mapplethorpe. in this case, it was a chap called jon leach, who has been doing street photography for about 5 years — no clue what he did before that — and he took a photo of me that i like, because when you look at the whole, reduced photo, i look serious, almost frowning, but if you look at the photo up close, i’m actually smiling.
190511 salamandir, up close
190511 salamandir, up close

busking this week has been a mass of contradictions: yesterday, we played two sets, after having been displaced at 11:00 from the place where i had added us to the list at 8:00 because an amplified band (which is “banned from busking at the market”) was setting up to play in a “flower festival” which the market managers had neglected to tell us buskers about until we actually got there — and they posted a new notice regarding the closure in exactly the same place where the “get your new buskers’ permit” notice had been, so the people (including me) who signed up on the list didn’t notice it until it was too late… so we went up the alley, behind the iron stairs, and busked for an hour, took an hour break (because “the official rules” say you have to), and played most of a second set before we got fed up — in the middle of a song — and said fuck it.

the reason we got fed up is because there were probably 20 people, from people taking pictures with their cell phones all the way up to people who had professional camera equipment, taking our photos, which includes a sign in a very prominent, central location, which says, in large letters “TIP FOR PHOTOS”, but NOT TIPPING FOR PHOTOS! 😠🤬

seriously! some of these people came in pairs, one of them standing next to, or behind us, and the other person, with the camera, lining up the shot so that we were both in the frame, with the sign that says “TIP FOR PHOTOS” in the frame as well, and when they were done mugging for the camera, they just turned around and walked off as though we were plastic manequins… and not starving musicians who have a combined total of more than a century of experience playing music.

my understanding is that the problem is partially because of the cruise ship companies which offer fares that “include all gratuities”, and partially because of the common myth that buskers are paid by the market. both are WRONG!! and it make life particularly awful for folks that have to make their living busking when people act like buskers are free.

on the other end of the scale are days like today, when we played 3 sets and made almost $50 a piece, which works out to around $16 an hour… which is not outstanding, but it’s enough that it makes you want to come back out and try it again tomorrow.

and then there’s the pike place market foundation. back in the ’80s, when the market was being renovated for the first time, i bought an inscribed tile, which was originally placed outside of the athenian tavern…

i had a picture of it, at one time, but i can’t locate it currently. 😒

anyway, they had to replace the floor in front of the athenian, in the ’90s, because it was unstable, and they tore out the section of floor that had my tile in it, and replaced it with somebody else’s tile.

when i bought that tile, i was in the tech school, and the price of the tile was in lieu of half a week’s groceries, but when i asked the market foundation about it when i discovered it was missing, in 2016, their response was to say that if it was not there, then it was not going to be replaced, and my money meant nothing. they offered me a “market charm” to be installed in the new section of the market (which they hadn’t even built yet) as a replacement, to which i agreed.

but it was, apparently, never installed. yesterday, i asked the lady custodian of the market charm database to check, and she couldn’t find it. so i filled out another market charm request, and she said it should be installed this fall, and i can check at their database at PikeUp dot org. while i was at the market foundation booth, i also bought a “pig pin” which came with this interesting printed card:

Pig Pin card
Pig Pin card

i noticed a design detail on the card, which caused this conversation between me and the lady at the booth:
ME: this card has swastikas on it! cool!
Lady At The Booth: those aren’t swastikas.
ME: they’re swastikas, they’re just not what you expected to see when i said “swastika”… they’re not nazi swastikas, they’re ORIGINAL swastikas, from before the nazis got hold of it: they’re “little good luck charms”, which is what the word “swastika” means, in sanskrit.
Lady At The Booth: yeah, but they’re not swastikas, there’s another name for it.
ME: the german word for a swastika is “hakenkreuz”. the reason english-speaking people use the word “swastika” is because nobody could figure out how to say “hakenkreuz”.
Lady At The Booth: but there’s another name for them.
ME: the word “swastika” is a sanskrit word that means “little good luck charm”. it’s the perfect symbol to put on the pike place market “good luck token”, and most people probably wouldn’t even realise that it’s a swastika, because it’s not a nazi swastika. the swastika is one of the world’s oldest symbols, and it was around, as a symbol of good luck for, literally, thousands of years before the nazis got hold of it! it’s about time we started taking it back, and making it into a symbol of good luck again!
Lady At The Booth: really? cool! 😊

allegedly, they’re going to snail-mail me when the charm is installed, but they said they were going to install it in 2016, and they didn’t, so it remains to be seen what they’re really going to do.

my wonderful pet, frank zappa the cat

my wonderful pet, Frank Zappa, the cat, innocently playing with a cat toy in a patch of sunlight, like a good kitty...
my wonderful pet, Frank Zappa, the cat, innocently playing with a cat toy in a patch of sunlight, like a good kitty…
my wonderful pet, Frank Zappa, the cat, honoured my presence (and the fact that i had just fed him) yesterday, by waiting until i had a full bottle of beer on my desk, and then jumping into my lap and doing the happy-cat-dance, which involves swirling around and waving his tail in such a way that it impacts the bottle of beer on the desk, spilling the contents into my keyboard.

😒

because of the fact that i have worked in several companies that actually, physically MADE keyboards — they really do wash partially finished keyboards in a household dishwasher before assembly — i wasn’t as upset as i could have been, but, nevertheless, i spent the entire rest of the evening taking my keyboard apart, cleaning the beer (and assorted dust, feathers, cat hair and other detritus) out of it, and re-assembling it…

only to discover that only half of the keys actually work. and not in a normal “right half works, left half doesn’t” way, but in a more random “half the keys in this line sometimes work and sometimes don’t” way, which indicates that some moisture probably got inside the four or five layers of waterproof linings — seriously, keyboards, these days, are practically impervious to spills… not like when i was a kid… — either that, or there was something that didn’t want to get bent, that got bent in the process of disassembling the keyboard: i tried to be careful and not bend any of the parts that looked like they might be upset if they got bent, but i may have bent them, anyway, without meaning to.

in any event, i have an alternate keyboard, just for such emergencies, which is the same model, but different colour keys. i have occasionally ransacked the alternate keyboard for spare parts, like when my “B” key’s spring broke, and the F2 and F3 keys died, so it doesn’t get used for anything, anyway… so i decided to make a frankenkeyboard…

in honour of my wonderful pet, Frank Zappa the cat.

frankenkeyboard
frankenkeyboard

this guy looks like me…

Young O and salamandir, 040619
Young O and salamandir, 040619
i’ve known about this guy for a while: his name is Howard Tayler, he is the author of the web-comic Schlock Mercenary, and he looks like me… or i look like him, or something like that.

originally, it was pointed out that i looked like him when i posted a (now deleted, but reproduced here) photo here, in january, 2006, and when i sent the same photo to howard, he said that it looked similar enough to him that he started going through his photos, trying to figure out where it was taken.

Howard Tayler
Howard Tayler
170307 burlesque show at the substation in ballard
170307 burlesque show at the substation in ballard

eventually he shaved his beard, and we didn’t look so similar any longer.

but, recently, he’s either grown a beard again, or has a very accomplished makeup artist that has fashioned an appliance for him, because, once again, we look similar — except now he looks even more like me… in fact, i get the impression that he may be trying to look like me!

it is very creepy…

Howard Tayler
Howard Tayler
salamandir, 180502
salamandir, 180502

here’s a pingback to his blog. maybe, he will have something to say about this odd coincidence.

warum?

why do the words “FLAMMABLE” and “INFLAMMABLE” mean the same thing?

why?
pourquoi?

ETA: it has to do with some idiot in the 18th century trying to “improve” the english language, and someone taking them seriously around the 1930s. first there was “inflammable”, but then, in the mid-18th century, someone came up with “flammable”, which meant something very similar, but not exactly the same thing, and it died out, fairly quickly, because people were more sensible back then. but then, about the time of world war 2, someone decided that “inflammable” had the same connotation as “invisible” — i.e. “not” flammable — so they came up with “flammable” to convince stupid people that it really was capable of being set on fire. 😒

hell is other people.

420 update

i’m getting closer and closer to divesting myself of all of my web hosting clients. i’m hoping that my last day of hosting anybody except me, and people directly related to me (i.e. my wife and son) will be 190430. i’m still trying to get two domains off my server, and then there will be one, which i don’t know whether they are going to find a new server, or whether they are just going to let it die. either way, it’s SEP and i don’t have to worry about it…

although i am… 😒

we came back from the beach. it rained a lot. i planned on taking mushrooms, but it rained, so i didn’t. i did spent a lot of time sleeping… and other passtimes:

190408 drawing
190408 drawing

like drawing…

190408 picture
190408 picture

although the dog moved by the time i took the picture…

and, given that it’s the first time that i’ve drawn anything other than doodles since my injury, i kinda like it…

then, we came home, and went to a concert by The University of Washington Harry Partch Ensemble, with authentic Harry Partch instruments:

190413 Harry Partch Instruments
190413 Harry Partch Instruments

the instruments are the Cloud Chamber Bowls, the Adapted Viola, the Adapted Guitar III, The Kithara II, the Spoils Of War, the Bass Marimba the Harmonic Canon, the Surrogate Kithara, the Diamond Marimba, the Marimba Eroica, the Koto, and the Chromelodeons I and II

190413 Spoils Of War
190413 Spoils Of War

a close-up of the Spoils Of War, with the Cloud Chamber Bowls in the background, and the Diamond Marimba in the foreground

190413 Modified Viola music
190413 Modified Viola music

it’s STANDARD NOTATION!!! just sub-scripts and super-scripts to define the microtones and the rythmn… i never would have guessed… but, at the same time, when you’re already working with music that is THAT DIFFERENT from what we, in the west, think of as “normal”, i suppose it’s a lot easier to not have to learn a new way of notating that “abnormal” music, as well…

it turns out that the current Harry Partch Foundation is located at the UW, and all of his instruments are housed there. again, i never would have guessed, but… wow.

i told monique, when we walked into the concert hall, that they had not played a note and i was already ecstatic.

i started my third session of my circus class. it’s a “basic circus skills for handicapped adults” class — mostly people with parkinson’s — but, because of the fact that i took to unicycle, i started a unicycle class, as well:

190419 my very own unicycle!
190419 my very own unicycle!
at first, i borrowed a unicycle from one of monique’s co-workers, but it was too short, so i went on craigslist and bought an almost-new, used unicycle, that was exactly the same size wheel but a longer seatpost, that is now my very own, personal unicycle.

i have this vision — my training from the flybottle class would say “fantasy” — of what i want to do with the unicycle: there’s this guy, in portland, who is known as “The Unipiper”. he rides around portland, on a unicycle, playing a flaming bagpipe.

i’ve wanted to make a flaming tuba for a long time. i’ve got all the necessary materials to make a flaming tuba. all i have to do is learn to ride a unicycle, and i can be “The Tubacyclist”.

i hope to be relatively stable on the unicycle by OCF this year. i’m GOING to do this! 🐉

snarl!!! 🤬

one of the down sides to vaping, as compared to smoking, is that, every now and then (even under the best of circumstances), i have to charge my battery. the “newer” battery models (and quite a few of the older ones, as well) have a micro-USB connector that you plug into a micro-USB charging cable — which are ubiquitous — and then plug the cable into a USB outlet, in your computer, in an outlet strip, in a USB charger, or in a brick in the wall.

i don’t have one of that variety.

the variety of battery i have takes a special type of charger. i suspect that it’s just a matter of swiching out the micro-USB connector (which frequently fails anyway) for a “screw-on” charger, but i haven’t taken apart a micro-USB charger (yet) to find out. it looks like this:

screw-on charger
screw-on charger

the problem is that, after a while — usually somewhere between 3 days and 3 weeks — they just quit working. when you screw them on to the battery, the light turns green and nothing happens.

i finally got tired of having to go and buy a new charger every couple of weeks, so, in desperation, i took one of the no-longer-functioning ones (of which i have MANY) apart, to see what makes it tick. what i found makes me want to spit!

what i found was cheap, probably chinese electronics, with two wires coming out of the charging end, which i expected. what i did not expect was that the wires WEREN’T EVEN SOLDERED to the screw-on attachment, which had a hexagonal piece on the end, which locked into the plastic case to prevent it from spinning.

not soldered wires! >8(
not soldered wires! >8(
the black wire was just layed down, flat, and the screw-on connector was laid on top of it, and the red wire was completely disconnected from the connector, which — naturally — prevented the charger from doing anything other than sitting there with a green light, looking pretty.

THIS IS PLANNED OBSOLESCENCE!!! 🤬

they build these things, EXPECTING them to fail, so that people will have to go out and buy a new one! 😠

i don’t have time, right now, but i am fairly good at soldering wires, and you can bet that, when i have the time, i am going to jigger up one of these gadgets that has BOTH wires correctly soldered in place, and take them to local vape shops and see if i can sell them.

’cause this is RIDICULOUS! 😠🤬😠🤬😠🤬

before & after

before
before

before = three notebooks and a file folder full of music, weighing approximately 40 to 50 pounds.

after
after

after = one 8½"x11½" tablet, weighing approximately 2 pounds.

and ALL of that music takes up only a tiny fraction of my local storage… 292.5MB out of 256GB, so there’s plenty of room for more, as well! 😎

when going places with my tuba and/or my trombone, this is definitely several steps in the right direction! 👍😎

although i’m probably still going to take the big purple notebook (on the bottom of the stack) with me, when i go busking, because when i’m playing for nickels and dimes, i don’t want to have a $1,500 tablet on my music stand where anyone can grab it and run off… 😉

FLONG!

a while ago, i came across this word in a web-comic that i read all the time. it was in a joke about librarians who were in the process of being stereotypical stoners, and i thought it was just a joke — and, as “just a joke”, it was a pretty good one — but little did i know…

flong

apparently there is an item called “flong” — sometimes called an “ad-mat” or “advertising matrix” in the newspaper business — which is a paper mould used to make stereotypes… which are called “clichés” in French, because it’s onomotapoetic for the sound produced when they’re made. 🤣

pieces of flong
pieces of flong

i should have known that, even in web comics (possibly, especially in web comics) when librarians make jokes, they make jokes by which even the professionals are impressed. 😎 😉 👍

also, i think i want a refund on this life. i’m almost 60 years old, i have been a typesetter for almost 40 of those years, and i have only recently discovered flongs: this is UNACCEPTABLE! 😠

a step forward

new ipad
new ipad
the fedex package finally arrived, which, of c(o)urse, meant that i went to the fedex distribution centre and forced them to let me have it there, rather than waiting for them to pull their head out of their ass and hire a full time driver who learns where my address is, instead of using a different contractor who doesn’t have the first clue — EVERY! SINGLE! TIME! 😠

anyway, i’ve got it more or less set up. i set it up as a new ipad, rather than transfering all of my old apps to it, which meant that i had — and still have — some finishing touches to add, most notably, the noisepad app, which requires a hard link to itunes in order to upload new sounds, but the version of itunes i have on my ancient macbook pro is several versions out of date and won’t recognise my new equipment, and even if it did, the ipad only has a USB-C plug, and my macbook only has USB-A plugs… so i’m probably going to have to use moe’s machine to get around that.

the big benefit is that i can display full-size, 8½”x11″ pages, which is 90% of my music, and the other 10%, which is more than one 8½”x11″ page, i can get a bluetooth foot-pedal page-turning gadget for about $50.

new ipad
new ipad

AND i’ve already got a fairly substantial portion of my music already “on the cloud” — i.e. either dropbox or my own, personal cloud-server — which means that, under the best of circumstances, i won’t even have to load my 256GB disk down with music files… although i might want to keep files on the ipad anyway, just in case i don’t have network connectivity, as i would (not) at the oregon country fair… 😉

and, after all, loading it down with music is the principle reason i bought a huge-ass tablet anyway… 😉

over it!

friday, 190209, it started snowing:

jovita park, 190209
jovita park, 190209

i was feeling adventurous, and it hasn’t snowed for a couple of years… and i recently bought a bunny suit and a set of steel-toed logging boots, and i have been joking with moe about going freight-hopping for a while… so i figured i’d go out for a walk. it was pretty easy, because there was only about 4 inches of new snow, and it was really pretty, because there wasn’t anybody else out in the park, in the middle of the day.

but the birds were not prepared for snow. the birds have been gearing up for spring early this year, because the weather has been so warm, and once it started dumping snow, particularly the hummingbirds were having a really rough time.

moe took this video of one of the local hummingbirds pecking away at the suet on saturday morning. pretty sad… we’ve been making sure to have enough bird food on hand, and our feeders have been flocked the past few days…

it snowed again today. i’m so over it. 😒 it’s time for more normal weather to come back.

190211 snow
190211 snow

thanks, drumpf. 😠

The PHBFH again

i thought i had a picture of the PHBFH somewhere else in this blog, but apparently i don’t, or, at least, i don’t any longer, since i moved all of my photos out of livejournal, and out of flickr, a while ago, and if it were there, it isn’t any longer… and, to be honest, i did find this picture of the PHBFH in my old flickr folder, with a bunch of other photos that i took on 070515, when ezra graduated from college. ETA: it was here, and i haven’t looked at it for at least 10 years, which is why i didn’t notice when i removed the pictures from flickr and they disappeared.

070515 The PHBFH
070515 The PHBFH

i put these pictures of her on internet, despite her wishes for me not to do so, because nobody has heard from her in at least five years. the last time i know of anyone hearing from her was about 5 years ago, when ezra got a call from the doctors who had been “taking care of her” at the state mental institution in steilacoom, asking if he was in a position to take care of her. when he said no, that was the last anyone i know of heard anything about her. she was never too keen on taking “medication” of any kind apart from “flower remedies” and herbs that she bought from a local herb tea shop, so my presumption is that she refused to take her medications, and thus was ejected from state care.

who knows where she is now? 😕

The Trash Issue

as i mentioned the other day, i found a whole pile of black and white negatives that are between 25 and 35 years old, quite a few of which were taken by my friend randy, for inclusion in an issue of Tina Magazine that never got published. we first started talking about “The Trash Issue” when we both were living in bellingham between 1990 and 1993. it gets sort of fuzzy after that, but my recollection is that randy moved away from bellingham in the middle of 1993 and took all of the writings for The Trash Issue with him.

90s COTC publications
90s COTC publications

i also have a picture of a whole pile of Tina literature that now, strangely, seems to be for sale at Alta-Glamour… in fact, i have narrowed it down to, either randy’s collection (which is more likely), or less likely it is jim’s collection… but, one collection or another, they somehow went from being in a photo that i took with my camera, with very few changes (none of the tracts, and the addition of The War On Drugs Issue, which is the reason i think it is randy’s… and if they have a ritual object, it is one of the bronze ones, because i have the silver one with the mystic emblems on the reverse side), some time between 1990 and 1993 to being for sale (at OUTRAGEOUS prices) at some rare bookseller, a fact which makes me angrier every time i think about it… 😠

but i digress…

anyway, i have a contact sheet which was marked up with indications of which pictures were to be used in The Trash Issue, and if i could think of some words to put with it, i would publish the posthumous Trash Issue on the church’s web site… because the internet was MADE for The Trash Issue.

The PHBFH

salamandir, the phbfh, ezra, 1989ish
salamandir, the phbfh, ezra, 1989ish

i don’t know who took this, or when it was taken, but my impression is that it was taken while i was working at evergreen station organic farm (pulling weeds), which would make ezra about 6. i really enjoy the look on ezra’s face. it’s clear that his parents may not realise it yet, but he knows what’s coming down, and it’s not good. 🤣

by the way, here’s a photo of the PHBFH on internet about which she can do nothing… 🤣

समाधि पीठ

sivaite samadhi peetham
sivaite samadhi peetham

i found a whole pile of black and white negatives that are between 25 and 35 years old. possibly older, as i don’t have a great memory for these things, so i keep a list of when things happened. according to that list, the picture above was taken in 1991 or 1992. it was taken to honour the fact that i had just experienced sabikalpasamadhi (सविकल्पसमाधि) for the first (and only) time, on the banks of the skagit river.

jim robertson
jim robertson

i just got back from picking up 182 4″x6″ prints. there are a bunch of pictures of ezra, the PHBFH, randy, and ruth. there are a few pictures of other people, including me, and jim robertson.

there are also a lot of pictures for the legendary “Trash” issue of “Tina Magazine”, which was never published, as well as several pictures of the Tina literature which is now, suspiciously, for sale at Alta-Glamour.

now i gotta get started scanning them. 😉

"holiday" season

dont fuck with santa claus
dont fuck with santa claus
this would be a good time to re-read the VEWPRF rant that i posted in 2008, because… well, it just is. that’s all.

the panto started last weekend, and it was good. it wasn’t great, but, for the first shows, it was better than average by a few steps, and it definitely has the potential for being great… especially after a couple more weeks of actual “rehearsal” 😉 i actually played most of the notes correctly, played a few notes that i have never been able to play before (low F, E and E♭), and they were audible and (most importantly) in tune, and i only got lost/confused/missed cues a couple of times, and it wasn’t because i wasn’t paying attention, like it usually is… which is good. there are a few physical sound effects: the ratchet, siren whistle, thunder sheet, bar chimes, slide whistle, that sort of thing, and there are a few electronic sound effects: horse whinney, squeak-stomp-splat for the donkey stepping on the ogress/mouse… and i’m thinking that i can probably come up with a better sword fight sound than the one i’ve got currently, which is bashing two metal spatulas together.

pike place market

181120 salamandir & howlin' hobbit
181120 salamandir & howlin’ hobbit

this picture was taken by a guy people know as “kurt vonnegut” — because he looks a lot like kurt vonnegut, apparently. i don’t know, because i barely remember the guy who took the picture, i was concentrating on the music so intently. i think his real name is davey, but i’m not sure.

Joe Desimone Bridge
Joe Desimone Bridge

this is the joe desimone bridge at 7:30 in the morning, before anybody gets there. at noon there are, literally, thousands of people passing through this space… and only a tiny fraction of them seem to notice the buskers… 😕

the "original" starbucks at 7:30 in the morning
the “original” starbucks at 7:30 in the morning

this is what they call the “original” starbucks. it’s not really the original, because the real original is about two blocks away, on western avenue, below and to the south of the joe desimone bridge… but it’s not there any longer, having moved up to pike place in the early ’80s (i think). but they still have the “original” signage and store livery… and, at 7:30 in the morning they have a crowd of 20 or so people inside: the rest of the pike place market, more or less, looks like the previous picture of the joe desimone bridge, but at 7:30 in the morning, the “original” starbucks (which isn’t even the original one) has a crowd. at noon there is a line that stretches down pike place, of people waiting to get into the “original” starbucks…

and they don’t even have that good coffee… 😒

tourists are WEIRD. 😕

ding dong – bush senior is dead!

george bush pin
I knew George Bush was lying from the beginning. Now we’re all stuck with him! READ MY LIPS!
i remember when bushy george was elected. after 8 years of reagan, i was beginning to develop a frightened “i don’t care” attitude about politics in general, but i knew at the time that this was a definite step in the WRONG direction, and several orders of magnitude worse than reagan.

i wasn’t wrong.

I Will Not Speak Kindly of the Dead. Bush Was Detestable.

George H.W. Bush Hagiography is the Elites’ Finest Accomplishment

George H.W. Bush Empowered Atrocity Abroad and Fascists at Home

bullroarer!

181014 bullroarer
181014 bullroarer

finished, working prototype bullroarer.

it “cycles” the way it’s supposed to: it spins as far as it can one direction, and then spins back the other direction automatically, while i spin the whole thing one direction all the time, thus making the characteristic “bull roar” noise. i made it out of plywood, to test the theory. i’ve got a chunk of really dense hardwood that should make a better, louder noise.

SUCCESS! 👍😎

Trump administration sees a 7-degree rise in global temperatures by 2100

180925 odd bodkins
180925 Odd Bodkins by Dan O’Neill

Trump administration sees a 7-degree rise in global temperatures by 2100
By Juliet Eilperin, Brady Dennis and Chris Mooney
September 28, 2018

Last month, deep in a 500-page environmental impact statement, the Trump administration made a startling assumption: On its current course, the planet will warm a disastrous 7 degrees by the end of this century.

A rise of 7 degrees Fahrenheit, or about 4 degrees Celsius, compared with preindustrial levels would be catastrophic, according to scientists. Many coral reefs would dissolve in increasingly acidic oceans. Parts of Manhattan and Miami would be underwater without costly coastal defenses. Extreme heat waves would routinely smother large parts of the globe.

But the administration did not offer this dire forecast as part of an argument to combat climate change. Just the opposite: The analysis assumes the planet’s fate is already sealed.

The draft statement, issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), was written to justify President Trump’s decision to freeze federal fuel efficiency standards for cars and light trucks built after 2020. While the proposal would increase greenhouse gas emissions, the impact statement says, that policy would add just a very small drop to a very big, hot bucket.

“The amazing thing they’re saying is human activities are going to lead to this rise of carbon dioxide that is disastrous for the environment and society. And then they’re saying they’re not going to do anything about it,” said Michael MacCracken, who served as a senior scientist at the U.S. Global Change Research Program from 1993 to 2002.

The document projects that global temperature will rise by nearly 3.5 degrees Celsius above the average temperature between 1986 and 2005 regardless of whether Obama-era tailpipe standards take effect or are frozen for six years, as the Trump administration has proposed. The global average temperature rose more than 0.5 degrees Celsius between 1880, the start of industrialization, and 1986, so the analysis assumes a roughly 4 degree Celsius or 7 degree Fahrenheit increase from preindustrial levels.

The world would have to make deep cuts in carbon emissions to avoid this drastic warming,the analysis states. And that “would require substantial increases in technology innovation and adoption compared to today’s levels and would require the economy and the vehicle fleet to move away from the use of fossil fuels, which is not currently technologically feasible or economically feasible.”

The White House did not respond to requests for comment.

World leaders have pledged to keep the world from warming more than 2 degrees Celsius compared with preindustrial levels, and agreed to try to keep the temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius. But the current greenhouse gas cuts pledged under the 2015 Paris climate agreement are not steep enough to meet either goal. Scientists predict a 4 degree Celsius rise by the century’s end if countries take no meaningful actions to curb their carbon output.

Trump has vowed to exit the Paris accord and called climate change a hoax. In the past two months, the White House has pushed to dismantle nearly half a dozen major rules aimed at reducing greenhouse gases, deregulatory moves intended to save companies hundreds of millions of dollars.

If enacted, the administration’s proposals would give new life to aging coal plants; allow oil and gas operations to release more methane into the atmosphere; and prevent new curbs on greenhouse gases used in refrigerators and air-conditioning units. The vehicle rule alone would put 8 billion additional tons of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere this century, more than a year’s worth of total U.S. emissions, according to the government’s own analysis.

Administration estimates acknowledge that the policies would release far more greenhouse gas emissions from America’s energy and transportation sectors than otherwise would have been allowed.

David Pettit, a senior attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council who testified against Trump’s freeze of fuel efficiency standards this week in Fresno, Calif., said his organization is prepared to use the administration’s own numbers to challenge their regulatory rollbacks. He noted that the NHTSA document projects that if the world takes no action to curb emissions, current atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide would rise from 410 parts per million to 789 ppm by 2100.

“I was shocked when I saw it,” Pettit said in a phone interview. “These are their numbers. They aren’t our numbers.”

Conservatives who condemned Obama’s climate initiatives as regulatory overreach have defended the Trump administration’s approach, calling it a more reasonable course.

Obama’s climate policies were costly to industry and yet “mostly symbolic,” because they would have made barely a dent in global carbon dioxide emissions, said Heritage Foundation research fellow Nick Loris, adding: “Frivolous is a good way to describe it.”

NHTSA commissioned ICF International Inc., a consulting firm based in Fairfax, Va., to help prepare the impact statement. An agency spokeswoman said the Environmental Protection Agency “and NHTSA welcome comments on all aspects of the environmental analysis” but declined to provide additional information about the agency’s long-term temperature forecast.

Federal agencies typically do not include century-long climate projections in their environmental impact statements. Instead, they tend to assess a regulation’s impact during the life of the program — the years a coal plant would run, for example, or the amount of time certain vehicles would be on the road.

Using the no-action scenario “is a textbook example of how to lie with statistics,” said MIT Sloan School of Management professor John Sterman. “First, the administration proposes vehicle efficiency policies that would do almost nothing [to fight climate change]. Then [the administration] makes their impact seem even smaller by comparing their proposals to what would happen if the entire world does nothing.”

This week, U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres warned leaders gathered in New York, “If we do not change course in the next two years, we risk runaway climate change… Our future is at stake.”

Federal and independent research — including projections included in last month’s analysis of the revised fuel-efficiency standards — echoes that theme. The environmental impact statement cites “evidence of climate-induced changes,” such as more frequent droughts, floods, severe storms and heat waves, and estimates that seas could rise nearly three feet globally by 2100 if the world does not decrease its carbon output.

Two articles published in the journal Science since late July — both co-authored by federal scientists — predicted that the global landscape could be transformed “without major reductions in greenhouse gas emissions” and declared that soaring temperatures worldwide bore humans’ “fingerprint.”

“With this administration, it’s almost as if this science is happening in another galaxy,” said Rachel Cleetus, policy director and lead economist for the Union of Concerned Scientists’ climate and energy program. “That feedback isn’t informing the policy.”

Administration officials say they take federal scientific findings into account when crafting energy policy — along with their interpretation of the law and President Trump’s agenda. The EPA’s acting administrator, Andrew Wheeler, has been among the Trump officials who have noted that U.S. emissions of carbon dioxide and other pollutants have fallen over time.

But the debate comes after a troubling summer of devastating wildfires, record-breaking heat and a catastrophic hurricane — each of which, federal scientists say, signals a warming world.

Some Democratic elected officials, such as Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, said Americans are starting to recognize these events as evidence of climate change. On Feb. 25, Inslee met privately with several Cabinet officials, including then-EPA chief Scott Pruitt, and Western state governors. Inslee accused them of engaging in “morally reprehensible” behavior that threatened his children and grandchildren, according to four meeting participants, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to provide details of the private conversation.

In an interview, Inslee said that the ash from wildfires that covered Washington residents’ car hoods this summer, and the acrid smoke that filled their air, has made more voters of both parties grasp the real-world implications of climate change.

“There is anger in my state about the administration’s failure to protect us,” he said. “When you taste it on your tongue, it’s a reality.”

george

i met george today.

i was getting gas in my car, and this tall, weedy, semi-suspicious looking guy came up to me and said “tell me about your bumper.”

inevitably, this means that he’s a “christian” who is offended by the message of my bumper sticker, which says JESUS IS A GATEWAY DRUG, but i feigned ignorance, partially because there was a HUGE line of people waiting behind me. but then he left no doubt, by pointing at it and reading it out loud. i responded by saying that it was a pretty simple message, and what more did he want to know.

so he started to say “i’m a christian, and…”, at which point i interrupted him, saying “i’m a christian, too”, at which point he asked me if i was jewish “because of your license plate” — i guess he hadn’t seen, or hadn’t been able to identify the huge picture of panchamukhi ganesha on the hood — but i said, no. i learned about jesus, and that gave me the opportunity to learn about all of the world’s religions, and i learned that they are all the same, and all point towards the same God.

at that point, i was done pumping gas, and, as i was taking the hose back to the pump, he said something that i didn’t hear, but it started with “no…” so i probably didn’t miss much…

180905 gonowtogeorge
180905 gonowtogeorge
then he handed me a card, and said “this is my web site”. so i handed him one of my own cards — the one that says “Bounded Chaotic Mixing Produces Strange Stability” — which he stood and stared at until i got in my car and drove off.

check out his web site… it’s hillariously “old school” (complete with dark-coloured background and rainbow-coloured font) and is, literally, “George’s Links To The World” in that, if it’s on internet, and george has read it and agrees with it, it’s on his site, somewhere. it’s not quite as single-focused as Time Cube, but it’s just as entertaining.

a few years ago, i was driving through south-of-seattle afternoon traffic, and i saw, on the car ahead of me, a bumper sticker that said “TRY JESUS”, and, immediately, i thought “that guy’s a ‘pusher'”.

then i thought about my own experiences with jesus, jeezis and “christians”, and i thought, if that guy is a “pusher”, then, in my experience, at least, jesus is a gateway drug: i learned about jesus, then i learned about other religions, then i learned that they are all the same… but my initial exposure to all of this was jesus.

thus, the bumper sticker.

i wish i hadn’t been so flustered, because i would have really liked to explain that to george. it is my impression that it would have blown his mind even more than it already was. 😈

Wheel Of Dystopia

180821 sorenson wheel of dystopia
180821 sorenson wheel of dystopia

Wheel Of Dystopia

I’m writing this after spending the day hunkered down indoors next to an air purifier, as I have the good fortune of being in Washington state while it’s home to some of the world’s worst air pollution. For the second year in a row, smoke from wildfires has rendered the normally refreshing air practically unbreathable. My primary source of entertainment these days is checking air quality monitoring websites for signs of ominous red and purple bulges making their way down from Canada. Fires in other parts of Washington aren’t helping.

As if things didn’t already feel apocalyptic enough, there’s something about these wildfire episodes, with their sickly grayish-orange skies and sense of entrapment, that truly give one the sense that the end of the Anthropocene is nigh. Scientists say that warming temperatures plus population growth in burn-prone areas are causing the surge in wildfires; meanwhile, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is, of course, blaming environmentalists. Hard to see how we come back from this brink, since we’re already so far over it.

oh boy, here it comes…

you remember the neighbour lady i creeped out back in march?

🎵 she’s ba-ack… 🎶

😕

soon to be my hat
soon to be my hat

today, i was walking up the street, minding my own business, when i heard the distinct sound of someone trying to be sneaky, and failing miserably, behind me on the other side of the street. i turned around, and saw a very frightened looking lady in a blue dress, with a cell phone; i couldn’t tell whether she was using it to call 911, or as a camera, to document the dangerous terrorist in the black burnous that was walking through her neighbourhood. then i walked behind a commercial vehicle that was parked by the side of the road, and when i emerged on the other side, the lady was nowhere to be seen.

i can just imagine what she must have said to the 911 operator. i can also imagine several ways the 911 operator may have responded to her… 😕

it’s going to creep her out even more when my hat is finished. 😈

new madness from veneta

in sanskrit (the ancient language of india), छेल (chela) means “a devotee”, and मेल (mela) means “a festival”, so छेल मेल (“chela mela”, TWO WORDS) is “a festival of devotees”.

the band of north american kalapuya “indians” (otherwise known as “native americans”) called chelamela is ONE WORD

the following pictures illustrate the fact that, at the oregon country fair, “CHELA MELA MEADOW” is TWO words… well, three, if you count the word “MEADOW”… 😕

chela mela
chela mela
chela mela
chela mela
chela mela
chela mela

i wonder if anyone else knows this. according to their own definition, this is CULTURAL APPROPRIATION!!

oh no… 😕

sombunall of the not-“native-american” artwork at the ritz is back in place, but the totem pole is nowhere to be found, and nobody knows what’s going to happen to it. the “archaeology” group (which was behind the lady who raised all the fuss last year) is still there, and still thinks we shouldn’t even have an oregon country fair, because it’s on “indian ground” (seriously, they’ve excavated a 10,000 year old camas oven from the bank of the long tom river, so there have been humans around that area for a LONG time) but the lady behind all the fuss last year was nowhere to be seen, as far as i could tell, and nobody was talking about indians feeling put out by the fair.

we didn’t play at the ritz. they didn’t make new tokens this year, so i only got one — last year’s design — in lieu of hat money, on saturday.

the fair was fun, and i’m not giving up on it, but it’s definitely time to find another therapeutic gathering in which i can get involved.

this year i took four pictures to make up for the fact that i missed a few years previously:

some random hippie, 2018
some random hippie, 2018
some random hippie, 2018
some random hippie, 2018
some random hippie, 2018
some random hippie, 2018
some random hippie, 2018
some random hippie, 2018

these were taken in order, on thursday, friday, saturday, and sunday. i also wore a djellaba and a red kufi (to piss off the cultural appropriation crowd), but i didn’t take pictures of that

Some Random Hippie, 2011
Some Random Hippie, 2012
Some Random Hippie, 2013
Some Random Hippie, 2016
Some Random Hippie, 2017

the mac
the mac
there is a new “pirate ship” next door to the morningwood odditorium, called “The Mac”, which produces macaroni and cheese in ENORMOUS bowls. i ate there four times. they also had smoked salmon mac&cheese, and bacon brocolli mac&cheese. yum.

tiny frog with a big attitude
tiny frog with a big attitude
tiny frog with a big attitude
tiny frog with a big attitude
tiny frog with a big attitude
tiny frog with a big attitude

sunday afternoon, i found a tiny frog trying to get into my tent.

on the way home, i drove up highway 101, and stopped in newport, where i got the business card for the company that made moe’s kite that broke. now all i have to do is find the stay that broke, measure it, and send them the measurements, and they’ll make a new one for it.

when i left the fair, i ran “off the map” with my GPS, almost immediately. i tried using waze, as well, but i didn’t have reception or connectivity until i got to lincoln city. then, when i got to astoria, i turned left, instead of following the default GPS and turning right, and i got the “return to the route” message no less than TEN TIMES, before it figured out where i was going… it’s a good thing one of us knew where they were going. 😉 on the other hand, waze looked at where i was going, and figured out a new route almost immediately.

it’s weird that this post is allegedly about OCF, and the parts that i get the most amusement out of are the parts where i have left the fair. oh well… 😕

i was forced into a fecesbook moratorium, because of the lack of connectivity. it was partially deliberate — i didn’t take my tablet, and couldn’t use my phone for anything except a camera, pretty much all week — and i’m thinking very strongly that this is a good excuse to abandon fecesbook all together. it’s awful, it doesn’t do anything to improve my mood, and the only reason i was there, to begin with, was because it’s the only way to get booked at the ritz… but now that job has been foisted off on someone else (or not, i don’t care), and there’s no obvious reason to continue wasting my time with it.

comings and goings

we got back from hawaii on friday, the 22nd. this morning, at 9:00 am, i took moe to the airport so she could fly out to las vegas, where she will be until wednesday. i think the dogs may have an inkling that she will not be returning today, but when they know for sure, they’re going to be PISSED OFF!!

we got to o’ahu on the 13th:

180613 first honolulu sunset
180613 first honolulu sunset

our plane landed, we were met by micah at the airport and whisked away to dinner, which was poke and pork chops. then we proceded to the Diamond Head Beach Hotel & Residences, on Waikiki. the next day we went to the honolulu zoo and were given a private tour of their veterinary facilities, and went to kaimana beach, which was on the same block as the hotel, which is where monique took a picture of me on the beach:

180614 salamandir on kaimana beach
180614 salamandir on kaimana beach

the bright green rash guard would come in handy in the next few days. we went snorkling at kaimana on friday, and i was still getting my feet under me (figuratively speaking), which meant that i was pretty exhausted when we went in, and wasn’t particularly ready to take on an activity that was guaranteed to exhaust me even further. i didn’t do too badly, but i was glad to have a piece of clothing that differentiated me in the water, so that i could be rescued more easily, if necessary.

after we went snorkling, we went on a dolphin swim at dolphin quest, which was exciting, but kind of sad at the same time. i’m sure that if i (and, by that, i mean moe) weren’t so educated about animal behaviour (and dolphin behaviour, specifically), it would have been a lot better, but, as it was, there were a lot of cues that weren’t followed through on, and the dolphins were basically offering behaviours that weren’t getting rewareded enough that they were getting confused. we did get pictures, though, and most of the other people didn’t even notice.

180615 salamandir and dolphin
180615 salamandir and dolphin

also, friday was my friend, and long-time band-mate Howlin’ Hobbit‘s birthday, so i went out and bought a postcard, and sent it to him.

180616 kahalu'u
180616 kahalu’u

180616 waiahole poi factory
180616 waiahole poi factory
on saturday (which, coincidentally, was International Sea Turtle Day) we went to the “north shore” to see “the property”, which, if everything goes the way micah has planned (which is still quite questionable), we may actually be living there one day in a few years. it’s all pretty much a secret, now, though, so i may have to take this photo down. we also visited the waiahole poi factory on king kamehameha highway, just north of “the property”.

we, then, proceded to drive around the north shore, where we saw the coincidental sea turtle. the photo tag says that it was at wahiawa, but i don’t think it was there, and i’m not sure where it was, because i was totally lost at that point.

180616 sea turtle
180616 sea turtle

on sunday, moe and micah took off to do some veterinary-slash-“property”-related stuff and i was left on my own to wander through downtown honolulu, and buy an authentic hawaiian aloha shirt:

180618 salamandir aloha shirt
180618 salamandir aloha shirt

naturally, i bought the most seizure-inducing colour pattern i could find. 😉 so, on tuesday, moe made me go out and buy shirts that weren’t so seizure-inducing. but before then, on monday, while i was wandering around in honolulu, a valet from some fancy hotel, out of the blue, asked me if i knew where he could get dimethyltryptamine, which, he said, was because i looked like a hare krishna devotee…
180619 salamandir waikiki
180619 salamandir waikiki

180618 diamond head hotel from kapiolani park
180618 diamond head hotel from kapiolani park
180618 kapiolani park from diamond head hotel
180618 kapiolani park from diamond head hotel

i wanted to mark up the following pictures with “we stayed here” and “here is where i took the picture from” circles and arrows, but, once i looked at them, it seems pretty obvious. this is the diamond head hotel & residences from kapiolani park, and the park from our hotel room.

figure it out for yourself. 😉

on tuesday, i went out and bought four other aloha shirts that were not so seizure-inducing. i paid $65 for the seizure-inducing shirt, which, apparently, was a pattern that they don’t produce any longer (big surprise), which increased its value. on the other hand, i bought four shirts for $35 from a thrift store (savers, also known as value village), including three “vintage” shirts that were actually made in hawaii (one was an original “Hilo Hattie” shirt with coconut shell buttons), which should have increased their value, and one that was made in korea.

on wednesday, we tried to go snorkeling at hanauma bay, but, even at 9:00 in the morning, it was so crowded with tourists that we were turned away even before we were able to drive into the park, so we went down the road a few miles to waimanalo beach, which was totally deserted…

180620 waimanalo beach
180620 waimanalo beach
because of the stinging jellyfish
180620 waimanalo beach
180620 waimanalo beach
but there were a few kids who had ignored the signs and were going in the water anyway. we were too smart for that kind of jazz, though, so we went back up the road a couple miles, not quite to hanauma bay, to the HURL facility at the Makai Research Pier, where we actually were able to get in the water and snorkle around for a couple of hours. i did a lot better, this time, and didn’t scare moe so much. 😉

although we did have an unfortunate incident at the end, involving a pile of shit that was not-very-deeply buried in the sand in the same vicinity that we left our non-snorkeling clothes which disturbed us a fair amount when we discovered it… 😠

thursday was our 20th wedding anniversary. we checked out of the hotel, and went to micah and shaya’s place, hung around for a while, and then went to the Honolulu Museum of Art, had a beer at the BeerLab on university street, had dinner at the sunrise restaurant, and came home.

i didn’t sleep very well on the red-eye that we took (approximately 5½ hours, with approximately 1 hour of actual sleep). we arrived home on friday, had a “recovery day” on saturday, and then, this morning, i drove moe to the airport so that she can fly out to las vegas.

Rule 3

an example of Rule 3, spammers are stooOOpid…

at 3:24 pm, today, this happened:

180501 stupid crack attempt
180501 stupid crack attempt

at 3:26 pm, today, i blocked 88.99.0.0/16 from accessing my web site.

you may not fit the definition of a spammer, but you are definitely stooOOpid. is it possible that you are a machine? you have not done your owner a favour, you know.

HPOI have arrived!

and there was much rejoicing…

180423 75kg of incense
180423 75kg of incense

it actually doesn’t look like that much incense, but remember… 75kg = 165.3467lb — these boxes are dense

180423 package numbers
180423 package numbers

they have weird packing in india… all of them are labeled “CNT:NO1/3” but each of them have a different CNT:NO… i would have thought that CNT:NO1 would be labeled CNT:NO1/3, and CNT:NO2 would be labeled CNT:NO2/3… but i have never shipped anything from india before, so who knows. what i do know is that i had to pay ANOTHER fee before i was able to pick them up, which brings the grand total cost to $1,815.75, or $1.12 per package…

which is still pretty respectable, considering that, as far as i have been able to tell, nobody else in the united states sells these incenses online, and i can probably retail them for $4.00 a piece, or wholesale them for $25 a dozen. 😉

180423 contents
180423 contents

i haven’t opened them all, yet, but i opened this one because it’s one of my favourite incenses. they used to make 999 Lord Krishna Puja Dhoop, but they don’t any longer. fortunately they use the same recipe to make sticks, so i’ve got my supply. 😉

i understand why mr. joy wanted to send me more incense. the three boxes didn’t even fill up one pallet, and it would cost pretty much the same to ship three boxes or thirty boxes. i can see that, now… of the $1,815.75 that i paid for it, only $771.00 went to MSDF, and $1,044.75 went to various different freight companies. it would have been much better for me to order twice or three times as much incense, because i would have had to pay the same amount to ship it…

next time…

or not… 😕

the residents

180409 The Residents
180409 The Residents

i saw the residents a few years ago, at neumo’s on capitol hill. at the time, randy (the lead singer) said that carlos, the drummer, had decided that, after 40 years, the “rock-and-roll” lifestyle wasn’t doing it for him, and he quit, which was why there was only three of them.

they seem to have found a new drummer, as well as a mysterious figure dressed in a cthulhu mask who sat there for the entire show and didn’t do anything.

they did a lot of their “Elvis” and “Two American Composers” songs to the tune of a lot of their “Train Wreck” and “The Ghost of Hope” songs, and there was some weird stuff about dreams with fabulous animated graphics displayed on a huge ball, so that they were even more distorted.

The Dream, part 1
The Dream, part 1

it was REALLY loud, but, unlike most of the other “rock” concerts i have attended, it wasn’t so loud that i couldn’t hear the lyrics (except when they didn’t want me to), and my ears weren’t ringing after the show, which impressed me.

take-away from the 2018 moisture festival

here’s what i want:

i want a tablet that has a USB interface (or not, depending on its disk size) that is approximately 9″x12″ or thereabouts, on which i can store ALL of my music (and, potentially, music for everyone else in the band, as well). if it has a USB interface, then i can have different bands on different flash drives. if not, different bands go in different directories or suchlike. my understanding is that there is an “automatic page-turning” app that one operates with a remote using their feet, but my impression is that most PDF readers switch pages with a swipe, which is pretty much what i do already, anyway…

that way i won’t have to carry around 40 pounds of music, as well as my tuba, music stand and chair…

180325 tom noddy and the littlest gymnast
180325 tom noddy and the littlest gymnast
the second week of the moisture festival — the one that i played in, with the fremont philharmonic — is over. it went really well, i played a majority of the right notes, didn’t drop my music, or lose tunes, made a majority of my cues, kept ALL of my music in alphabetical order, except for the tunes that were “officially” part of the show, so i could find things instantaneously when things changed abruptly without warning…

which they INEVITABLY do at the moisture festival.

hacki and möppi were there, tom noddy was there, sandy was there, frank olivier was there, peewee and joanne (barry and yvonne, couple #69) were there… i saw people that i only see once a year, at the moisture festival… it was the 15th anniversary of the longest running comedy/varieté showcase IN THE WORLD (and my 15th year as a performer in the moisture festival), and hardly anybody mentioned the fact that the palladium is up for sale, and there’s a possibility that whoever buys it will not honour the contracts that events like the moisture festival (and the panto) have with mike hale… but, at least for now, things are happening in a more or less normal, for the moisture festival, way. who knows what’s going to happen next year… apparently somebody does, but it’s not me, and whoever it is, isn’t saying anything.

you’re creeping me out

you are the lady who lives on the west side of 37th Ave. S., between S. 378th and S.376th, who came out of her house after i walked past this evening, and yelled “you’re creeping me out!”

i am the guy who walked past your house in a cloak and hood (it’s actually called a burnous), like this:

180319 you're creeping me out
180319 you’re creeping me out

without looking back, i yelled “i’m sorry”, but i wanted to give you a more complete explanation.

i’m sorry you’re “creeped out” by me, but when you yell at me like that, i want to come back and reassure you that it’s just me, and i’m not dangerous. in fact, i am a human being, with feelings, and it hurts me that you would think of me in that way. i also think that, perhaps, you should critically examine the things that “creep you out”, because they may be steering your life in the wrong direction. i’m not hurting anybody, and the fact that i don’t dress like “normal people” shouldn’t be an issue, as long as i’m not hurting anybody. it’s reactions like yours that make me afraid to walk in our neighbourhood, despite the fact that i’m not dangerous, and i never hurt anyone.

at the same time, you should not expect me to change my habit of dressing strangely and walking through our neighbourhood at dusk, because it’s my right, regardless of how much it creeps you out. 😡

inventory

new and replenished dhoop selections, a new nag champa, and a couple of new things to play around with: black copal resin and palo santo, which set off my new smoke alarm before i had the chance to adequately evaluate it. 😉

inventory
inventory
coming soon, A LOT of incense from MSDF: 33 dozen 999 Lord Krishna Puja (the sticks, not the dhoop. apparently they don’t make the dhoop any longer), 63 dozen 7 African Powers and 40 dozen 909 Three Roses. 🙂

wononskopomuc

Thonotossasa, FL 160530
Thonotossasa, FL 160530
i got an incense order, today, from lakeville, connecticut. lakeville is in the vicinity of two lakes which rival puyallup for odd native american place names: wononskopomuc, and wononpakook.

for a long time i was under the impression that puyallup was about as strange a native american place name as you could find anywhere… then i encountered thonotosassa, florida, and now this

wononskopomuc
wononskopomuc

otamatone! オタマトーン 😊

i’ve wanted one for a long time: pretty much ever since i first read about them on internet, a few years ago. but i’ve never bought one, because it seemed too frivolous… and i’ve read some really negative reviews of them, that made me think they are not very well built, and so forth.

but this a gift, and it is from my lovely wife, so, of course i want it… and, actually, it plays pretty well — for a “novelty” “toy” that doesn’t have notes marked on it… it will definitely be an honoured member of my sound-effects collection, if nothing else… 😊

otamatone オタマトーン
otamatone オタマトーン

not only that, but the guy on the package (who, i assume, is Novmichi Tosa, the inventor of the otamatone), is wearing a wrist watch with an old-school telephone dial on it:

wrist watch with a telephone dial... what does it do?
wrist watch with a telephone dial… what does it do?

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.

WOL!

i went for a walk. when i returned, he was sitting on our gate post as i walked up. he flew up into a tree…

170922 WOL
170922 WOL
170922 WOL
170922 WOL

monique sez that either it’s a dumb baby bird (possible), or he’s not feeling well (also possible). if the latter, he’s chosen the right place to do it… although i don’t know how we’d go about catching him to give him whatever care he might need…

170922 WOL
170922 WOL

ETA: it’s probably just a dumb baby owl, ’cause it caught a rat and was eating it in the tree, about an hour later. nice owl. we’ll feed you lots of rats if you stay here… 🙂

so, anyway…

i got back from OCF, which, apart from the fact that my email was screwed up when i left, and nothing had been done about it by the time i came back, was excellent. i left on tuesday the 4th, and returned on monday the 10th, got bit by at least 50 different mosquitoes. they were huge and ravenous this year, pretty much the same as always, but they definitely dissappeared by thursday. i don’t know whether or not it had to do with the incoming throngs of people, but there was a definite difference between the clouds of mosquitoes surrounding me on wednesday, and their dissappearance on thursday.

chela mela
chela mela
the big conversation this year was around “cultural appropriation”, specifically the “cultural appropriation” perceived by a few, very vocal, “native american” (or not) people who aren’t even associated with the fair, when The Ritz (one of my favourite places about the fair) after 5 years of carving this EXQUISITE “story pole” outside the ritz, in a very public way, decided to raise the pole.

that’s it…

the “native americans” (or not) decided, after 5 years of public carving, without saying a SINGLE WORD, that the ritz raising their “story pole” is “cultural appropriation”.

first of all, i don’t actually know anything (which is the way 90% of the fair is run, from the beginning). all i pretend to know is what other, very passionate, people, some of whom actually do “know”, have told me. but what they say is:

the lady that’s behind the cry of “cultural appropriation” is a “troublemaker” and has been for many years. she may or may not be native herself and she has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the fair, but she has made an “anti-story-pole” web site and invited other “native american” groups to rally behind her standard. a small number have actually done so.

the ritz, in response to this lady’s blandishments, have COMPLETELY REMOVED ALL of the “native american” art from the premises, taken down the boiler that had native american artwork on it, that was prominently placed at the entrance, flipped over a fence that had native american style carvings, and replaced it with “vanilla” art, taken away 90% of the T-shirts, tote bags, bandanas and other merchandise that had “inappropriate” artwork, and minted new tokens this year, as well as taking the story pole off site for the fair.

at the same time, elders from a variety of northwest tribes, including the native kalapuya tribe, and elders from standing rock, have blessed the ritz, said that the artwork, and the ritz itself, HONOURS native traditions, and that this whole “cultural appropriation” fiasco is totally unimportant, considering how many actual issues of grave importance there are facing native americans, and society at large, these days.

finally, my own opinion is that ART IS CULTURAL APPROPRIATION. people like picasso (or was it banksy?) have said “IMMATURE ARTISTS IMMITATE. MATURE ARTISTS STEAL.” ever listen to “jazz”?

not only that, but having studied, and tried to imitate, northwest native artwork, i can tell you, from personal experience, that it’s not easy at all. the guy who carved the story pole wasn’t native, himself, but he obviously had experienced and expert native assistance, as well as YEARS of personal experience, to make a story pole that looked as authentic as it did, despite having elements that would NEVER HAVE APPEARED on an authentic native pole…

which it was never presented as being in the first place! 😕

so i was intrigued when i read a blurb that was posted in “Xavanadu” (what used to be called “The Craft Lot”, outside Morningwood Odditorium), concerning why the fair decided not to raise the story pole this year. it said, among other things, that there were a band of the kalapuya tribe called “chelamela”.

i haven’t yet met anyone who knows for sure, but it was always my impression (and the sign above supports the idea) that “chelamela” was a sanskrit compound word: छेल (chela) means “a devotee”, and मेल (mela) means “a festival”, so छेलमेल (chelamela) is “a festival of devotees”.

the idea that there may have been a band of kalapuya indians called “chelamela” is intriguing to me — suspicious, but intriguing — especially considering all of this “cultural appropriation” furor that is currently going on.

apparently, it’s true… who knew? 😉 so, the next question is, who “culturally appropriated” who, here?

there wasn’t a single day in the week that i was there, when i wasn’t involved in a PASSIONATE discussion about this issue, with MANY people. it made for a REALLY INTERESTING fair…

😕

north trotter's
north trotter’s
above, is “north trotter’s” on wednesday. it’s about a mile from Morningwood Odditorium: to get there, i had to walk through fields called “Xavanadu”, “Miss Piggy”, “North Piggy” and “Kermit” to get to the “Cabal Crossing”, which is where i signed in. by friday, this ENTIRE FIELD was filled with cars. near the center of the photo, in the background, you can see a structure that marks the beginning of the exit road. on the other side of that structure is another, similar sized field, “The Dead Lot” (named for a Grateful Dead performance that happened in 1989(?) in the lot), and beyond that is another similar sized field called “Outta Site”… which is where i parked my car this year. there is a shuttle, called “F.A.R.T.S.” (Fair Area Rapid Transit System) which i had to ride if i didn’t want to walk.

bird
bird
this was the bird that was over the dead lot, one of the times i decided to walk.

anagrams of Oregon Country Fair
anagrams of Oregon Country Fair

a huge load of hippie crap
a huge load of hippie crap
on wednesday, someone delivered a huge load of “hippie crap” to “xavanadu”. they eventually assembled it all into this. at night, the “roots” lit up with rainbow crawling LEDs.

Godfrey Daniels
Godfrey Daniels
he was my next door neighbour. 😎

more huge loads of hippie crap
more huge loads of hippie crap
more huge loads of hippie crap. at night it lit up with rainbow colour-changing LEDs.

some random hippie, 2017
some random hippie, 2017
what’s wrong with this picture? 😉

Some Random Hippie, 2011
Some Random Hippie, 2012
Some Random Hippie, 2013
Some Random Hippie, 2016

March 26, 2000

March 26, 2000 - Kingdome implosion
March 26, 2000 – this took place right down the street from where we were living, at the time. i went, set up my (still) camera, and a tripod, and took 30 photos, in rapid succession, with the intent of making an animated .gif of the process… now, 17 years later, i have actually completed that task. go me.

space queen

one of my favourite strains of medical cannabis is space queen.

a year ago, i declined to pay $420 an ounce for space queen at a dispensary in auburn. in fact, after they told me how much it was, i walked out without saying another word. $420 an ounce is WAY too expensive! 😡

six months ago, i was able to buy space queen at another dispensary, in tacoma, for between $280 and $320 an ounce… the upper end of which is verging on too expensive.

i’ve been going to commencement bay cannabis for about three months now. at first, they didn’t have space queen at all. then, when they got it in, i was paying $180 an ounce — with a 10% discount, because i am over 55 years old… *(BONUS!)*

two days ago, i went to commencement bay cannabis, and bought TWO ounces, for $90 a piece, with a 10% discount, making them $81 a piece…

THIS is how competitive pricing works!

space queen
space queen

blast from the past…

Perceptual Motor Rhythm Skills - Teachers' Edition
Perceptual Motor Rhythm Skills – Teachers’ Edition

where do i start?

quite a number of years ago… maybe 35 or 40… i used to entertain myself by calling radio preachers and saying bizarre stuff. after a while, i started recording these conversations arguments, particularly with one specific radio preacher, Bob Larson, and playing them for my friends. i also sent a copy to a friendly person named Matt Jasper, who ran a little company called Tray Full Of Lab Mice Publications, who combined it with other sound sources and released his own tape, which was called “Tina Chopp vs. Bob Larson”… in spite of the fact that “Tina Chopp vs. Bob Larson” was only a small part of that tape, which included other people interacting with bob in a similarly strange way.

at some point, someone at Bananafish Magazine got hold of matt’s tape, and combined it with a bunch of other, nominally musical, sources, and, in 1992, released a 7" EP vinyl album, called “Perceptual Motor Rhythm Skills – Teachers’ Edition” which was released, as a pressing of 1,500, with issue #7.

and i FINALLY had to BUY my copy, a couple of weeks ago, from the River Street Beats Shop, because i didn’t even know the album existed until a couple of weeks ago… 😎

pictures

the

moclips

so, i’ve had this idea for a bumper sticker:

it says “‘ana last earbia. ‘ana last arhabia. tawaqqaf ean aizeaji.”, which means “I am not an Arab. I am not a terrorist. Stop harrassing me.”

if i made it, would anybody buy it?

M&Ms

i’m not particularly concerned about whether or not my food contains GMOs… i’d rather that they not, but it doesn’t concern me an awful lot if they do, it’s just one of those things…

so, i was intrigued when i saw, on the back of the costco-sized package of peanut M&Ms that i bought recently, when i saw a notice on the back of the package that said “PARTIALLY PRODUCED WITH GENETIC ENGINEERING”…

GMO M&Ms?
GMO M&Ms?

so, i called the customer inquiry line that they posted on the back of the package, and this is the story i got:

they are required, by law, to label potentially GMO products. however, suppliers of some of the ingredients — i.e. NOT associated with the M&M/Mars factory — may OR MAY NOT use genetically modified organisms to produce the raw material that gets sold to M&M/Mars, AND

get this…

THEY DON’T HAVE TO TELL M&M/Mars whether they do or not.

because of the fact that M&M/Mars DOESN’T KNOW whether or not their suppliers use GMOs, they HAVE TO label their products, whether they contain GMOs or not.

in other words, by law, M&M HAS TO notify us, even though they DON’T KNOW THEMSELVES!

THIS IS WHY I AM VERY SUSPICIOUS OF FOOD LABELING! 😡

zoinks!

so i “gave up” on my indoor grow project a few months ago, because of recurring issues with pests. i planted my four weedy, pathetic remainders outside and left them to fend for themselves.

they’re doing fantastically well outdoors… 😕

160925 plants
160925 plants
160925 plants
160925 plants
160925 plants
160925 plants
160925 plants
160925 plants
160925 plants
160925 plants

ho hum, default new entry title…

returned from OCF yesterday. logged into farcebook this morning and was immediately confronted with political stupidity and people making fun of human failure. we weren’t able to play at the ritz this year, despite my being in contact with the booker through farcebook for two years now. i’m seriously wondering whether or not this experiment with “social media” is worth the hassle.

however, interestingly, i only went to the ritz twice, because it rained on saturday, but, in spite of not getting booked to play this year, i ended up with three ritz tokens, and actually got to play one song with stuart’s band, choro loco. i played cuica:

cuica
cuica
cuica
cuica

i went to OCF last tuesday. the mosquitos were ravenous, and numerous… and HUGE! i got bit a lot tuesday and wednesday. thursday they calmed down a bit, and by friday they were all concentrating on the tens of thousands of other people who had just arrived. wednesday i slept for most of the day, which was luxurious, but somehow i wish there had been more activity.

there weren’t as many pictures, but they were memorable.

there were also a few pictures, not included, of daylight, close-up shots of the pedal-powered scroll saw i want to make.

2016 some random hippie
2016 some random hippie

other years:

2011 some random hippie
2011 some random hippie
2012 some random hippie
2012 some random hippie
2013 some random hippie
2013 some random hippie
Morningwood Odditorium, with the back of David Barnes' and Julia Kingrey's heads
Morningwood Odditorium, with the back of David Barnes’ and Julia Kingrey’s heads
my tuba, at Morningwood Odditorium
my tuba, at Morningwood Odditorium
Strangely stole my phone
Strangely stole my phone