Friday, December 31, 2010

Pictures for the end of year...

Events from 2010:
The top picture is Summfest in Stayton from last July.
The next picture is my successful tomato I grew upside down this summer.
The third picture is an asteroid heading out way but missed us.
The bottom picture is the recent eclipse.
More pictures coming in 2011.

The End of this year


The end of 2010 is here. I am not doing anything tonight, except for drinking a glass of Scotch.

I will finish reading The Emperor's Tomb tonight. It is a page-turner and I need some time to sit down to finish it in one reading. Everyone is now in the tomb of the first emperor of China. He is the one who created all of the terra cotta warriors, whom I saw on first trip in Xi'an.

What are your plans for 2011? I do not make annual plans for the coming year. Just because a new year is coming why make new plans?

Happy, happy and happy New Year to everyone who reads this blog.


Thursday, December 30, 2010

Pictures for H

Hi again:
The top picture shows a Santa problem.
The bottom picture show a part of the eclipse from the other night.

Cold, cold day here


It is getting colder every night for about four days. It will be in the teens tonight, I am sure.

My fudge is almost out.

I slept 10 hours last night so some reason. I will stay up later tonight reading than in previous nights.

Everyone is leaving for the New Year. I am staying here by myself.

I will spend the next few nights reading my books.

Not much else is happening here.


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Pictures for U

What else???? Two feet of snow....


Snow expected tonight or tomorrow here


I see from the weather person we may get snow here tonight and tomorrow. I take some pictures if we do, indeed, get snow.

If you are a new reader to this blog, you see I post a written missive then post pictures. I do this because this site like not to separate paragraphs when pictures are added to my written posts.

I am watching The Scarlet Letter now, the movie from 1995. At the beginning of this movie, it said it was "freely adapted" from the Hawthorne book. I have the book in my Kindle and I may read it again soon. I read this book the first time in grade school. Since I went to St. Mary's Grade School it was a surprise to see this book in that library.

The Emperor's Tomb is turning into a page-turner now. I need to set some time to read it through the end soon. Steven Berry is an excellent mystery writer and I read all of his books over the past few years.

Off to do some errands now.


Monday, December 27, 2010

Picture for this Monday

A couple of AARP cartoons that explain themselves.
I must admit I like the Village People songs.

Monday of the last week of the year


I changed the fonts on my computer, so this is bigger.

It is raining here and has been raining here all day. I want to go the bank but not until it stops raining.

I am enjoying reading The Emperor's Tomb. Now the author is mentioning Kunming China. I was there for a trip from there. He has the characters going to Xi'an, where I was for six months. Nice to read a novel of China where places I have been in China.

I have 3 more books coming to the library very soon. I have another book I want to read first, The Civil War of 1812. This was our second Civil War, with the Revolutionary War being the first and third being the big one in 1860.

I am watching the weather outside closely.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Feast of St. Steven today 12/26


Today is the feast of St. Steven. I don't believe it but like I said I don't believe much of what the church teaches.

In whomever wrote Luke must have been on drugs too. The christmas myth he creates about a census where everyone has to go their home town to be counted. Not true in any sense. Why would Rome make people go back to hometowns of ancestors to be counted? Some people had not been back to the hometown for over 100 years. This is a false story.

The story in the New Yorker from last week says only the mark gospel, but mark did not write it. Whomever wrote mark did not write the last part of that tale. Even the catholic church admits this. No virgin birth and no resurrection in that story. It is the first one written so the closest one to the truth, but again I don't believe what is it either.

This will be the end of this rant on xxxxxxx season.

I am now reading The Emperor's Tomb by Steve Berry. Part of this novel takes place in China where I was at one point. Part of takes place at terracotta museum. I was there with my new camera to see the thousands of soldiers dug up from there. The pictures I took there disappeared from my computer once I tried to send them to it.

I used chocolate chips in my latest batch of fudge. Not as dark as when I used Baker's chocolate.

Rain all week is coming, I see. During a rain break today I rode my bike to Safeway to get the paper.
The picture here is what James Fallows, a senior writer for The Atlantic, saw in his back yard in Washington D.C.

Enjoy this last week of 2010.


Friday, December 24, 2010

Picture for Friday

Pictures taken six months apart.
The top one, taken last June, shows some rodies in full glory. The rodie is good only for about 3 weeks when it is bloom. I don't care for rodies for that reason.
The bottom picture, taken just two weeks ago, shows the $1.1 million damage to Aumsville during the tornado that hit there. Ten business and 50 families were displaced by damage here. The $1.1 million seems low for that reason.

The Eve of XXxXX day


As you know from reading this blog I don't believe in the xxxxx myths. They are good stories with good lessons, but not a word of truth in either of the two main stories. Why none in the book who wrote Mark (Mark certainly did not write it)? Why none in the acid-induced story of whomever wrote John?

Even the two main stories do not agree. Read them again to see the major differences.

xxxxXXX is day for family but not a celebration of a birthday of him or her. We know which month or which day she or he was born.

I posted both on Twitter and Facebook about my lack of faith. No one has seen to comment on my remarks.

I no longer go to the Catholic church here even though it is only two blocks from this house. Why go with no faith?

The story in The Sherlockian is two: one set in 2010 and other in October to December 1, 1900. The story set in 2010 thinks someone has found the missing diary of Sir Arthur for the exact period of the other story set in 1900. In the 1900 story Sir Arthur seeks the murderer of two young ladies who were active in the women voting. But it is soon apparent that the 1900 story is the diary that is missing for it takes place to Sir Arthur during the missing diary time.

Sir Arthur killed off Sherlock in 1983 and resurrects him in 1904, but he publishes a novel on Sherlock in 1901, The Hound of the Baskervilles. He explains nothing about what happened to him in 1893. He waits until 1904 to reveal what happened to his apparent death in The Adventure of the Empty House.

Reading tonight and tomorrow.

Have a great holiday.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Picture for today

Art made of car parts.
The bottom picture shows yet another but this time with the artist. He is from Argentina.

H of xxxxx week


I am doing nothing on xxxx day on Saturday. No great one was born on that day, certainly not jc. The church hijacked a pagan holiday to make a Catholic holiday.

On a related matter, how did we end up with our current calender? Dennis the Little, in the 10th century, was instructed to start a new calender to set a more exact time of easter. So he set Easter as the first Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox (the start of spring). This lives on to this day.

Why do I have no faith? I wonder why....these two examples are but part of my lack of faith.

I visited my cousin today. Marlene had a stroke about 10 years ago. She cannot talk very easily nor can she walk. I pushed her around the garden area outside, but not much to see this time of year.

Reading my book on Sherlock. It is an excellent novel.


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pictures for Wednesday of xxxxx week...

Seattle at night.
What some people think of Spam. I last ate Spam when I was in high school and none since.

Wednesday of xxxxx week


Imagine you are in London in early December 1893 and you get your Strand magazine. Opening it you see yet another story from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle on Sherlock Holmes. This is how stories of his were distributed in the late 19th century.

You are a little worried about the start of this story, called The Final Problem, as Watson writes:

"It is with a heavy heart that I take up my pen to write these last words in which I shall ever record the singular gifts by which my friend Mr. Sherlock Holmes was distinguished...and to have said nothing of that event which has created a void in my life which the lapse of two years has done little to fill..."

That causes some concern in your mind, but the story starts out like many of his musings.

But by the end you continue to read so fast and you react in horror. Sir Arthur has killed off Sherlock. You don't know how glad he is kill off his creation. Even his mother had called him to ask that he sign one of his magazine articles "Sherlock Holmes" for a friend of hers. Not Sir Arthur but of his fictional character.

Years go by, but Sherlock is never far from the public mind. Sir Arthur continues to get accosted on the street.

You go out in the street and see others who have read the story so fast.

In the next few days it is big news in the main papers of London. People and others, including you, start wearing black arm bands.

You hear reports that Sir Arthur is attacked on the street every where he walks. He is called "killer" and "assassin." Yet he says nothing.

The uproar continues for years.

But in early 1904 you open your Strand magazine to see another story narrated by Dr. Watson. Sherlock has returned with a somewhat reasonable explanation of what happened at Reichenbach Fall in Switzerland. You are happy once again. Stories continue for many more years, the joy of you and the terror of Sir Arthur.

Amazing what I can find on the internet.

Also the fiction book The Sherlockian tells two stories, one set in 1893 and other in 2010.

Interesting stories...


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Pictures for Tuesday of xxxxx week

On this, the shortest daylight of the year, a glance at what is to come in just a few months in the top picture.
The bottom picture shows a big guy in a small car.

Tuesday of xxxxx week...


I refuse to the word chr....... and instead will use xxxxxxx as I don't believe in the xxxx myths that show up in only two of the gospels. The stories showed up in those to counter the theory that he had no father and was hence a bas****. That is why these two stories were made up as fiction.

I put together my gifts today for my dad and my brother.

I do not celebrate chr...... so I plan to do nothing on the 25th as it holds no special significance to me.

The church stole a pagan holiday to make chr...... We know nothing of when jc was born and what time of year he or she was born.

Find and read The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ by Phillip Pullman. That book makes as much sense to me as anything in the bible. This author said there were twins and this makes as much sense as anything else.

I picked up two more books at my library today. One is novel called The Sherlockian and the other is a nonfiction book called As China Goes, So Goes the World: How Chinese Consumers are Transforming Everything. Both books are good to read this coming weekend.

Have a good week and enjoy your holiday.


Monday, December 20, 2010

PIctures for Monday of xxxx week

Both pictures are from China, although the top one looks like a picture from Oregon.
The bottom picture shows a panda handler with panda baby. Of course pandas don't walk the way he is walking.

Monday of the week...


As you may know, I don't believe in the christmas myth of the stories in just two of the gospels. As again you may know, I don't believe any part of the what is in the bible. All good stories with good lessons but no truth to any of it. None of it is true; it is all fiction. How could it be true, it would be like any one of you sitting down, with no notes and no Internet and no library and telling everything you know about Prohibition. It happened sixty years ago. What do you know about it? Not much as I don't know much about it. How could anyone 2,000 years ago know about what happened 60 to 100 years ago? That is good argument and good enough argument for me. Not one bit of truth in it.

This is why I don't want to go to Church on Saturday. Why listen to the fiction of his birth as if it were true? It is not true, but the priest will say everything is true. It is fiction. Pure fiction and nothing else.

End of this rant.

An eclipse of the moon later tonight. I want to see it, but it may be too cloudy here to see it. I will go out at 10:30 pm to watch it if the clouds are not in the way.

It is a full eclipse of the moon later tonight.

I am reading Eels, a good book on the eels of the east coast. They all migrate to the middle of the Bermuda Triangle to breed.

What are you doing this week?


Saturday, December 18, 2010

Pictures for Saturday

I am going back to two posts every day I do a post.
Yesterday's post with more than one picture caused the text not to separate paragraphs.
The top picture is from Holland, showing the tulip fields and a windmill.
The bottom picture shows pencil leads as the alphabet. Look close at the tips of these pencils to see the letters there.

Saturday eve now...


The Blind Side is a very good book after all. Michael Lewis is the author. I read Moneyball, Liar's Poker, The Big Short--all by this same author. Each of these books are all excellent books.

I put a towel outside yesterday to dry outside. It got wetter during the night. I brought it inside today to dry here instead of outside. I think the time for hanging clothes outside has passed until later this spring.

I will finish The Blind Side tonight and then must chose another book to read once I finish that one.

I have three choices to make: one is The Book of Fate, a novel by Brad Meltzer; the second is Eels: An Exploration, from New Zealand to the Sargassso, of the World's Most Mysterious Fish by James Prosek; the last one is Running the Books: The Adventures of an Accidental Prison Librarian by Avi Steinberg.

I am leaning to the novel as my next book.

This is the season to read books as it is raining and raining and raining outside. Plus it gets dark well before 5:00 pm these days.

Hope your weekend is going well.


Friday, December 17, 2010

Friday afternoon here...

It is cold here, 20 degrees early this 3:15 am. when I arose.
Another bifurcated night, up at 3:15 am and back to bed around 5:30. I just do not know why I wake up in the middle of the night. I went to bed after 11:00 pm last night.
I did finish Hell's Corner last night. Yet another great novel from David Baldacci.
I am now reading The Blind Side. I saw the movie a month ago and wondered about the truth of the movie. Michael Lewis wrote this book. I have read three other books by this author and now this is the fourth one. The book is nonfiction. I am about 100 pages into it, and it more detailed than the movie. The only factual difference between the book and movie so far is that the father first contacts Michael Oher, not the children or the mother as the movie shows.
I was debating about reading this book as it is like making sausage. Too much detail on football dynamics. I do not watch football on TV (except for my Number 1 Ducks); I have not watched a professional game in decades, probably since the mid-1980's.
I don't watch basketball on TV either. I do watch an occasional baseball game where I can read during the non-action parts of the game.
Have a great weekend.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Pictures for today...

These are pictures of a replica of the ark that man built according to the prescriptions of the bible.
He thinks it literal bible.
Me, I don't believe anything like this. I don't believe any stories in the bible are real. All are good stories but have no basis in fact. Nothing in the bible is true. You can have your beliefs and I can have mine.

3rd time is charm...


I made fudge for the third time today. My first batch had too much milk in it so it did not set. My second batch I forgot to cook the first four minutes, so it taste with sugar. This is my third time and is very good.

I am still reading Hell's Corner; it is really good book. I will finish this book today.

It is Thursday today. has video of the tornado and a lot of people to see it.

I am watching a movie called The Fourth Kind, about aliens who came to abductions. A good movie with no aliens showing up in the first 2 hours.

Have a good weekend.


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Day after...

All of these images are from Aumsville yesterday, showing the damage done by the tornado that touched down in part of this town.
I am starting with the bottom picture here. This was Nichols Plumbing, a business that has been here since 1962. Notice, however, the empty jars still on the two top shelves of the wall. Amazing the destruction of this shop but those jars did not fall down.
The next picture up shows again the absolute destruction of places in this town.
The third picture up (the second picture down) shows how selective this tornado was as it touched down in places in Aumsville. The weatherman yesterday that this tornado acted like a bouncing tennis ball, touching down in places then going up, then touching down again.
The top picture shows again where the tornado touched town in one place, destroying this business.
The newspaper today said four businesses were destroyed and 50 homes severally damaged.
But no one died and there were only two very minor injuries.
These pictures I got off The Oregonian's website,
Not much else happening here.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Tornado near here...

Around noon today a tornado touched down in Aumsville, about four miles to the west of here in Stayton. No injuries but many homes and businesses destroyed. We did not lose power here but the it did go off just about noon here for one second, then back on.
Tornadoes are not common here at all. In fact I cannot think of another tornado here. We had a hurricane here in 1962.
I got these pictures from The Oregonian website and the website of TV station in Portland.

Pictures for Tuesday

The top picture is Fox News, which is absolutely true.
The bottom picture is desk overload.

U here now...


Not much happening here.

Reading Hell's Corner by David Baldacci. He writes the best mystery novels, much better than King, or others of same kind. I will finish this book tomorrow.

I dried some persimmons a few weeks ago. I will dry two more later today. They are very good dried.

I was up at 5:00 am this morning again. I don't know why I am getting up so early. I will try to stay up much later tonight to see if I can get a few more hours of sleep during the night.

I do have some big news to announce but I will wait a few weeks before doing it. I will remember to do it before I leave.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Picture for today...

My new look with something missing from my face.

New Fudge today...


I made fudge again today, this time following the recipe to the exactness. It turned out perfect this time, not the liquid fudge I made a few days ago.

I am now reading Hell's Corner, a David Baldacci book. I like reading all of his novels.

I did finish Bloody Crimes yesterday. Jefferson Davis was captured in Georgia and was imprisoned for two years, when the federal government released him to live out the remainder of his days (24 more years) in the South. He was popular there but faded from history rather quickly upon his death. The other big story was the death train of Lincoln from Washington, D.C. to Illinois. It took a circuitous route, going northeast then south and finally west. Millions of people watched as the train passed by. It stopped at many large cities where a memorial was held for the fallen leader. If you are going to read this book, first read the same author's book Manhunt, the search for Lincoln's killers. Bloody Crimes is a sequel to that book, as it fills in what was happening in the country as Lincoln's killers were caught and quickly brought to justice, with four of them hanged.

It has been raining here since about 2:00 pm today. I made it to Safeway to get my fudge ingredients around 1:00 without rain. I ride my bike so today I rode with no rain.

I was up at 4:15 this morning again. Wide awake so I got up to listen to NPR programs I was behind on for the past few days. I watched 3 episodes of John Adams today. I recorded it from HBO a few months ago. I have four more to go. I have John Adams on my Kindle so I can read his book again any time I want.

Hope your weekend was good.


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Pictures for Thursday

Spring flowers and spring trees coming up in just a few months.

raining all day today...

Hi again:

It has rained all day today.

I made fudge today, but it did not set up. I was not paying attention to the recipe where it called for 3/4 of cup of evaporated milk but I added 15 oz of it instead. It is like a thick soup so I put in the refrigerator to see if it sets up there.

I am watching The Pacific that I recorded earlier this year. It is 10 parts and I am now on Part 3.

I do not know if Jefferson Davis will be captured. I am reading Blood Crimes, the combined stories of the Lincoln train ride back to his home after being killed with the story of Jefferson Davis and his effort to continue the Civil War and escape he makes across the South.

Not much else happening here.


Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Pictures for Tuesday

More pictures from Xi'an.
The top picture shows one of the identical twins reading a poem for me.
The bottom picture shows Jason singing a song in Japanese to me.
All of this happened at the party this group of kids threw for me when they found I was leaving this school.

U here now..Tuesday afternoon is not here


I am surprised how much affection was given to the Lincoln train that traveled through the few states it went from Washington D.C. to Illinois.

They had a service in every major city of each State the Lincoln train went through. President Lincoln became Father Abraham to Saint Abe on this journey. All of this comes from Bloody Crimes. At the same time as this was happening Jefferson Davis was trying to figure out how to continue the Civil War even though his armies have all given up and gone home.

I picked up seven books from the library today. Good reads through Christmas. Not much TV so reading is my Christmas avocation.

Tomorrow I am making fudge....and reading....


Monday, December 6, 2010

Pictures for the day....

Pictures from Xi'an China.
The top picture is a party one of the classes gave me when I announced I was leaving. The entire class sang and danced only for me.
The bottom picture is the teaching group from Xi'an when we all took the day off for a hike up a tall mountain.
Steve good to me....

Hi again:

I am not feeling very well today. I don't know what is wrong with wrong with me.

I sure glad the Number 1 Ducks are in the Championship Game on Jan. 10. I do believe the Number 1 Ducks will beat the lowly Auburn team. Auburn is a one-dimension team, whereas the Number One Oregon Ducks has the greatest depth.

I enjoying reading Bloody Crimes, the sequel to Manhunt. I like reading history books.

I now see I have seven more books waiting for me at the library. I will go there tomorrow to get them as long as it does not rain.

I do plan on making fudge later this week. I have everything I need to make it, so finding the time to do it is all I need.

It is after dinner now; I did not each much. I know I will be better tomorrow.


Saturday, December 4, 2010

Pictures for this great day...

Great day for my Number 1 Ducks but not such a good day for the beavs. The best kind of day for me.

My Number 1 Ducks are 12-0 and the lowly beavs ended as 5-7 and not going to any bowl. I am so glad of this latter fact.


P.S. This picture I got from The Oregonian webpage online. I want to credit them for this picture.

A most wonderful day...absolutely wonderful...


This is a great day, the greatest day so far this year. My Number 1 Ducks won again today. This time against the hated beavs. 37-20. Big enough for me, although I wanted the Ducks to score every time they had the ball. A win is a win and a loss for the beavs feels great. I never favor the beavs no matter whom they play.

My Number 1 Ducks are 12-0 and the beavs are not going to a bowl with a record of 5-7. Good for the beavs. Each gets to stay home to watch all of the bowl games. Good for them.

My brother Randy is going to the Championship Game in Glendale. Cost of the tickets are $345 each. Too much for me...but Randy is a donor to the Duck Fund so he gets preference in getting tickets.

I am now reading Bloody Crimes: The Chase for Jefferson Davis and the Death Pageant for Lincoln's Corpse. It is a sequel to Manhunt: The Search for John Wilkes Booth. Both are great books. I read the latter book earlier this year and now reading the former book.

I am now caught up on The New York Times, reading two days worth today. Now the big one comes tomorrow.

A tea day today, this time my favorite, Earl Grey tea.


Friday, December 3, 2010

PIcture for Friday

A mint field just west of Stayton, taken this summer.


the weekend is here now...


I do not know what my plans for this weekend are yet. Garage sales are over for the year as far as I can tell.

I did make a chocolate cake for myself yesterday. I put half of a cup of chocolate chips into the cake, to make it taste even better.

My dad gave me a fresh marion berry pie. It is my favorite pie.

I spent most of the day yesterday reading. I did not work much on my birthday.

I am reading At Home but slower than I would like. It is a long book and I may take a week to read it now.

Have you heard of a story that a 10th planet is coming at us during 2012? I have only one friend telling me this, but nothing in the paper or other news. I think he listens to Glenn the Idiot too much.

Hope your weekend goes well and you have some fun now.


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Pictures for this special day

Spring flowers that will be coming here soon...not soon enough....but soon.
Azaleas and lilacs, two of my favorite flowers.

H, Dec. 2 today


Yesterday I was 60 years old, and today I am 61 now. Not too bad of a day then...

I certainly do not feel like 61, more like 41 instead.

The first part of the house that the author talks about is the Hall in the book At Home. By hall he means the one room house that first appeared thousands of years ago. A fire in the middle of the house caused it was very smokey.

I am getting ready to publish Redemption, an Epic Poem on the Kindle page. This is the second poem we have published on the Kindle page by the late Raymond Geraths. The first poem is Creation, an Epic Poem. If you have a Kindle look for Creation on the Kindle page. It is a good story of how God created the world and how she created Adam and Eve and their subsequent fall. Like I said a good story but I do not believe any of this happened. Good story with good lessons but not true in any sense.

What are your plans for the coming weekend?