Thursday, October 31, 2019

Thumb On The Scale

It seems that social media giant, Twitter, is putting its thumb on the scale by restricting all political ads beginning November 22.
In a series of late afternoon tweets Wednesday, Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey announced the social media giant will be banning all paid political ads, minus voter registration campaigns, effective Nov. 22.
I've never used Twitter myself, finding it hard to make a cogent political statement in 280 characters.  The platform seems to limit itself to cheerleading and snark, rather than reason and logic.  I admit that some folks manage to use it effectively, but it's not my platform of choice.  I use this platform for politics and use Facebook for snark and keeping up with the grandkids.

But, it's no secret that President Trump is a master-user of Twitter, and it's also no secret that he's been hammering his opponents on Twitter for years.

However, one of the most evergreen Tweets ever is credited to Jim Treacher, who  said:
Modern journalism is all about deciding which facts the public shouldn't know because they might reflect badly on Democrats.
It appears that Twitter is follwing in that same mold.

Net CO2 Emmitter

We've all heard the trope:  CO2 is bad, causes global warming climate change.  And, forests are goo, they use CO2 to make oxygen through photosynthesis.

According to an article in Forbes magazine, California's forests are now net CO2 emitters.
This is California’s big secret: it’s not climate change that’s burning up the forests, killing people, and destroying hundreds of homes; it’s decades of environmental mismanagement that has created a tinderbox of unharvested timber, dead trees, and thick underbrush.
And, when all that crap catches fire, as it so regularly does, it creates massive amounts of CO2.   So, not only is California's regulatory regime causing massive property damage and loss of life, along with rolling electrical blackouts, it's also advancing carbon emission.  This is an example of well-meaning regulation gone horribly wrong.  It should be a cautionary tale for the rest of us.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

No, Senator, It's Your Politics

Senator Kamala Harris believes that sexism ad racism are responsible for her poor showing in the race for the presidency.  Yeah, really.

No, Kamala, it's your politics.  There are lots of failed politicians in the United States, (and I count myself in that population).  Sour grapes is never a good reason to show your ignorance.  America is not ready for a socialst who engages in race-baiting.  America wants strong, positive leadership and you haven't shown any.

There are several black women I would vote for, and I hope that I get the chance to do so.  I"d vote for Condoleezza Rice in a heartbeat.  In another cycle or so, I'd be tempted to vote for Candace Owens.

The one thing that Senator Harris forgets is that she's not trying to cinvince me.  She's running in the Democratic primary, and I don't get to vote in the Democratic primary.  She's trying to convince fellow Democrats, ad she's undetectable.  Evidently, he message is all wrong, even for Democrats.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Hunters Are Conservationists

It's true, but it bears repeating.  The majority of American hunters are staunch advocates o wildlife conservation.  And, most America hunters work to preserve the land, the habitat, and the animals that they hunt.  Large organizations like Ducks Unlimited, or the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation play a part in conservation, and their members are in huge part, hunters.

Locally, at least in this part of the country, we have small individual clubs, called "leases", where hunters band together, lease a tract f land, and make improvements t the land so that they can enjoy the outdoors and hunting.  Many of these clubs have been around for generations, and have more restrictive rules on the taking of game than the state regulations.  They invest time, money, and effort to insure that the game populations are healthy.  Many leases that I know about have fies for members who take game that are outside of their harvest rules.

Politicians should remember this.
Almost $1 billion each year goes to state wildlife and natural resource agencies courtesy of checks written by firearms, ammunition, and related manufacturers. It is the result of an 11 percent excise tax on firearms, ammunition, and related goods known as Pittman-Robertson, or the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act of 1937.
Hunters are often vilified in the shooting -related press as "Fudds", bu the hunters do more for wildlife conservation than any group of "environmentalists" groups than I've ever seen.

Monday, October 28, 2019

C'mon Joe

Our racist ex-vice president says that white girls don't get puled over by the police.  Yeah, really.
During the Second Step Presidential Justice Forum at Benedict College, a historically black college, on Saturday, Joe Biden was asked by an African American woman in the audience, “If I were your daughter, what advice would you give me the next time I am stopped by the police?”
 “If you were my daughter, you’d be a Caucasian girl and you wouldn’t be pulled over,” he said.
Really, Joe!  Cops don't conduct traffic stops on white girls? That would come as a surprise to a lot of women I know.

One of two things in play here:  Either he's so out of touch with common Americans that he doesn't know what the hell he's talking about, or he's a stone-cold racist that doesn't understand that he's a racist.    Or, a third choice.  He's an idiot.  Take your pick

Friday, October 25, 2019

Only In Louisiana

Only in Louisiana could we have a cold front move through on the same day as a tropical depression. Sure enough, we had a cold front move through this morning.  A tropical depression (TD 17) came out of the Gulf and slid along the cold front, increasing both the drama and rainfall from the cold front.

Hurricane season will be over next week.  Thank God.

Busted My Ass

Coming out of the shop today with an armload of gunfighting gear, I slipped in mud and went smooth t the ground.  Mud is soft.  The gear is okay and I believe that I'm okay too.   Just wet, and muddy.

There is a big gunfight in Texas tomorrow, and I've been so busy over the past six months I haven't been to any out-o-state gunfights.  Belle and I will get up a the butt-crack of dawn and head out.  The gunfight is only 3 hours away, but it will still make for a long day.

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Great Advise

Great advise from a sitting Sheriff.

Do you carry every day?  If not, why not?

What is Schiff Doing?

That nitwit Dem Congress-critter from California.  Evidently he's holding some sort of sooper-seckrit show trial in the House, where news media and Republicans are not allowed, It reeks of Stalin, or Mao's People's Courts, where dissidents were convicted secretly, without benefit of counsel, and taken away to re-education camps.

Schiff's way of doing business is decidedly un-American.  It reeks of unfairness, ad I'm not sure what his end-game is, but it has no basis in American law.  It's absurd theater.

Ben Shapiro said that the only thing the Democrats needed to do to beat Trump was to not go insane, and it appears that they are unable to project the illusion of sanity.

Monday, October 21, 2019

Pot Roast

Evidently, it's been two years since I made one of these.  It was a family favorite for many years, indeed, my grandfather made one every Sunday for a couple of decades.  It took center stage at this table on Sunday.

I decided that it had been too long, and stopped at the butcher's today to get a five-pound chuck roast.  Came home and pu it on at noon, let it do it's thing until 4:00, when I put on a pot of rice.

Now, my belly is full, and the boys have pushed away from the table.

The recipe is here!

Beto's Conundrum

Recently, ABC News aired footage of what it called a slaughter in Syria, but had to retract it because it was actually footage of range enthusiasm at a legal range in Kentucky.
"CORRECTION: We’ve taken down video that aired on “World News Tonight" Sunday and “Good Morning America” this morning that appeared to be from the Syrian border immediately after questions were raised about its accuracy," the network tweeted. "ABC News regrets the error."
Those of us who love the 2nd Amendment were mirthful  that ABC knew nothing about Knob Creek.  However, halfwit presidential hopeful Beto has had a moment of clarity.

If we were the problem, Beto, you'd know it.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Fonda Arrested

The traitor Jane Fonda was arrested yesterday in Washington D.C. while protesting global warmening climate change.  It seems... I dunno... that the ice caps are receding or something.  Maybe it's about the polar bears.  I can't keep track anymore.
A day earlier, the actress appeared with Waterston in a video focused on a discussion of a Green New Deal, a Congressional proposal for comprehensive legislation about climate change. 
So, she's going to protest climate change after flying across the country, burning hundreds of gallons of jet fuel?  If she wanted to make an impact, she could have walked across the country to the protest, rather than the craven hypocrisy of burning fossil fuels to protest the use of fossil fuels.

I'll start believing it's a problem when they start acting like it's a problem.

Friday, October 18, 2019

Bonded Whiskey

In the mid-to-late 19th century, there were weird things going on in the whiskey industry in the United States.  There were these folks called Rectifiers who took whiskey and did things to it to make it different.  Some of what they were doig was pretty sketchy, like adding tobacco, or arsenic, or other vile substances to give the whiskey a particular flavor.  Even today, the license required to product alcoholic spirits is the Distillers and Rectifiers Permit.

In 1807, Congress got enough of this nonsense and passed the Bottled in Bond Act.  This was one of the very first consumer protection acts, and predates the Food and Drug Administration by a goodly margin.  This act required that if a distiller wanted to take advantage of this law, that several things must occur.  1) The whiskey must be distilled by one distiller, 2) during a single distillation season, 3) be aged at least four years, and 4) all under the supervision of the US government.  This law gives the consumer confidence that the product in the bottle is legitimate whiskey.

Bottled-in-Bond is quickly becoming my go-to house whiskey for mixing with coke.  At 100 proof, it holds up well to mixing and it is very inexpensive.  Just this morning I was at my local retailers and picked up this 1.75 liter bottle of Evan Williams for under $30.00.

It's pretty good hooch for not a lot of money.  Evan Williams is a product of Heaven Hill Distillery our of Louisville and Bardstown, KY.  It has a mash bill of 78% corn, 10% rye, and 12% malted barley.

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Chicken Bowls

KFC makes one, but the boys and I were plundering around this afternoon and found some chicken nuggets in the freezer.  We heated the oil, then got out a box of mashed potatoes and cooked them while the oil heated.  Fried those chicken nuggets, then opened and heated a can of corn.  Then, I took out a skillet and made a quick cream gravy.

Layered it all in a bowl, and sprinkled it with cheese.  The boys got really quiet, because they were eating.

It was pretty durned good for a throw-together supper, if I do say so myself.

Whoa: Cummings Dead at 68

The news is everywhere.  Elijah Cummings, the powerful Maryland Democrat and chair of the House Oversight committee, is dead at age 68.
Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee and a key player in the ongoing impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump, died early Thursday of complications from longtime health issues, his office said in a statement. The Maryland Democrat was 68.
That is unexpected, although it's a trip we will all eventually take.


It finally feels like autumn around here.  The weather has moderated, and today promises to be just exactly the kind of day that never lasts long in these latitudes.

I have a few errands to run this morning, but this afternoon, I'm going to open the big roll-up door and let the shop air out.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019


So there's this genre on YouTUbe called Reaction video, where someone who has never hared a song watches it on YouTube and reacts to it as it's being viewed.  One of the most powerful I've seen is Brroks and Dunn's Believe.  It's been a favorite o mine for a while, but watching people who have never seen it (or don't know about country music) is fun to watch.  Like the reaction of this young lady.

Personally, I believe that this is a powerful video, and it's one of mmy favorites (along with two dozen others).

Campaign Finance

I've spent all morning wading through campaign finance reporting.  I think, and fervently believe that I have met all the requirements for campaign finance reporting as required by Louisiana law.  I was running a one-man campaign, and even though I have a degree in Business Admin, it was a exercise in accounting, a subject I've always abhorred.  I know how to do it, I just don't like it.  I was never cut out to be a bean-counter.

Yet, there are ethical campaign requirements and I believe that I have fulfilled my obligations to my contributors, my voters, and the State Ethics Board.

I can't imagine what the other candidates are doing, especially those with small campaigns.  Yeah, I can imagine it.  I just went through it.  It cost me approximately $6.19 per vote I garnered in the primary election.  That might be a good estimate on what a campaign has to spend to get one vote.  So, if you are thinking about running for office, do your homework.  I ran a shoe string campaign, and if I'd had to pay rent on a campaign headquarters, the per-vote cost would have gone way up.

Nothing New

The Army Times is reporting on a proposal to align National Guard units into division-sized units to provide deployable divisions to the US Army.  This is nothing new.  We've been doing this for years.  During my career, I was variously assigned at one time or another to the below units.

90th Infantry Division - Comprised of various units from Texas and Oklahoma, it was first activated during WWI and has been serving ever since.

95th Infantry Division - Activated, but not deployed during WWWWI, the division saw combat in WWII and earned the nickname Iron Men of Metz.  It is currently a training division of the US Army Reserve, headquartered at Fort Sill.

256th Infantry Brigade - probably the most storied unit of the Louisiana National Guard, it traces it's lineage back to the War of 1812, where it served Jackson at the battle of New Orleans (Washington Artillery).  Various infantry units were combined during the Civil War and assigned to the Army of Northern Virginia. Known as Lee's Tigers, the unit has battle streamers colored both blue and gray.  I am retired from this brigade.  At the time, the brigade was a mechanized infantry brigade and I was assigned to 1st Battalion, 156th Infantry (Armor), a unit outfitted with M1A1 tanks.  It is now designated as 2nd Squadron 108th Cavalry.

This same thing happened in virtually every sate in the union, and the point is that the Guard and Reserve formations have long been assigned to division level units.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Daddy's Maybe

There is an old saying:  Mamma's baby is Daddy's maybe.

Insty talks about a story where a father bought is now 15-year-old daughter a DNA test and they found out to their shock that the daughter is not biologically related to the father.
Earlier this year, after buying his now-15-year-old daughter an AncestryDNA test, Christopher found out that he is not her biological father. His wife had an affair.
That's a problem, but it leads us to the question of fatherhood.  If a man raises a child from birth, doe it make him any less a father than if he had biologically conceived the child? Or, is a step-dad who marries a woman with children any less a father than the fellow who abandoned her?

It's an horrific tale, but DNA testing is a genie that can't be easily put back in the bottle.  From a prominent senator who's DNA test invalidated her ancestry claims, to the nameless, faceless people who find out that they are not related to the people that raised them.  The revelation must be a terrible event, with aftershocks of betrayal and self-doubt.

Still, it's not the child's fault, and The child is blameless in any of these scenarios.  We've gotta love the children that they bring us, regardless of the science behind the conception.

Monday, October 14, 2019

Red Beans

It's Monday, historically a day to do laundry.  The weather is cool and clammy outside, which screams for comfort food.  True to form, I'm doing laundry this morning.  Back in the old days, when a harried housewife was doing laundry with a rub board, or even an old wringer washing machine, she was busy.  Today, as a layabout stay-home husband, I have more time on my hands.

But, red beans and rice is still an easy meal.  In the old days, that harried housewife could walk past the stove occasionally and give the beans a stir.  It was an easy meal that didn't take much work.  Even today, it doesn't take much work.  I have two grandsons here that will get home from school about 3:00, and I generally have a hot meal ready.  Belle and I quit eating supper many years ago, preferring to eat lunch, and maybe a snack in the evening, but grandsons eat heartily.  We keep hot pockets, frozen pizza, and other quick foods available for them, but a hot meal in the afternoon tends to keep them out of the freezer foods.

When they get home this afternoon, I'll have a big pot of red beans on the stove, along with a pot of rice.  The recipe is here.

Now, f you'll excuse me, I do believe that I heard the dryer buzz.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

That's A Wrap

The election is over, and it's int he record books.  I didn't win.  That's actually an  understatement.  I didn't even come close.  I garnered a few votes, and I appreciate those who pulled the lever for me, but it was not in God's plan.

I'm in good company.  There are five other very fine police officers who are also not in the run-ff for Sheriff.  I'm not discouraged, I'm not depressed, it is what it is, and I'm okay with American democracy.  I learned a lot about the election process, and I met a lot of very good people.  For those faceless voters who voted for me, I appreciate the show of confidence.

Belle and I slept in this morning, after a long day yesterday.  I'll sup this cup of coffee and then start dismantling the campaign.  In the coming days, I'll finish the accounting and reporting that the law requires.

Politics is interesting, and this was my first (and probably last) foray into the process.  I learned a lot, and it was a great experience.  I have no regrets.  The past six months transitioned me from a workaday cop into retirement.  It was a lot of fun, but now, it's time to turn the page.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Election Day

It's Election Day, and I'm running for office.  I've done everything I can do, made the rounds, talked to everyone I can talk to.  I don't need luck, but I'll take luck.  This is American democracy at work, and I can't complain about the outcome.

But, there is one ting I can do.  I can throw a little party for those folks that gave me support, gave me courage, gave me the will to put myself in the rings.  I love those folks, and win, lose, or draw, I'm going to say Thank You.

So, we're hosting a little get together at the campaign headquarters tonight.  We're going to eat, and visit, and tell stories, and watch the election returns.  And we're going to eat and have fun.

I cooked a brisket yesterday.  12 hours at 250 with Datamation Rub in the smoker.

We're putting on a pork butt, and we'll have 'tater salad, pulled pork, brisket, Cole slaw, Ouida potatoes, peach cobbler, and Belle made a bodacious cake.  Plus, whiskey, beer, and wine.

Today is Election Day.  It all comes down to the numbers.

Friday, October 11, 2019

Extinction Rebellion

Evidently, there's this movement in Britain, Extinction Rebellion, that's causing chaos in London.  Big protests disrupting traffic and disquieting business.

There is a lovely clip at Townhall that shows the hypocrisy of these people.

Piers Morgan, who I generally disagree with, makes exactly the point.  If you believe that an individual carbon footprint is the problem, why don't you make those individual changes that you want to impose on the rest of us?

I'll start to believe that climate change is a problem whe the advocates start acting like it is really a problem.

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Rare Whiskeys

So, we've all heard of Jack Daniels ad Old Charter, and Jim Beam.  Not rare at all, with great distribution.  Basically, those bourbons, ryes, or malts that can be found at any liquor store and many grocers shelves.  We know about those.  Some of them are great whiskey, and deserve our attention.

Bourbon, (over the last several years) has undergone an explosion in demand.  Many of the huge producers are struggling to keep up with demand, because bourbon requires a long lead time.  At least two years in the barrel.  And, because of the bourbon explosion, it's driven many more whiskeys to be in demand.  As a result, others are getting into the game, and that's good for whiskey drinkers.  We're getting to try a bunch of very interesting whiskey that wasn't available ten or twenty years ago.

For example, when we talked about bourbon the other day.  Dave, in comments, pointed me to two that I had never heard of.  Leadslingers, and Horse Soldier.  I've never heard of them.  Believe me, as both a retired Cavalry officer and a hobby gunfighter, if I had ever seen either of these brands on the shelf, I'd have picked them up simply out of curiosity.  They are not locally available and their distribution is limited.  That's not a bad thing, necessarily.  If they are selling all the whiskey that they can produce, they're doing fine.

But, when someone mentions a whiskey I've never heard of, or tired, I simply go to Google and dive down the rabbit hole.  Evidently, both of these companies are veteran owned the making really nice whiskey.  One source that I always click on is The Whisk(e)y Vault.

Here's the review for Leadslingers:

And here is the review for Horse Soldier:

If you guys can find these bourbons, give them a try.  Evidently, they're doing some really interesting things .

Here's to fighting, stealing,and drinking.

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

Well, Hell.

California Weirdness

I was listening to this story on talk radio this morning as I was running errands.  I thought it was odd.  California (bless their hearts) are under threat of fire because of hot dry winds.  Really horrible fire conditions, and their power supplier , PG&E, is threatening to cut off nearly one million customers because high winds break limbs off of trees, knock down the power lines, and start fires.
Pacific Gas and Electric said power was shut off to 513,000 Northern California homes and businesses early Wednesday. Another 234,000 Pacific Gas and Electric customers will lose power at noon local time, and 42,000 customers in the southernmost areas of the company's reach could also go dark, the state's largest power company said.
That is complete and utter bullshit. The solution is simple.  Hire crews to cut limbs along power lines.  We do that all over the South.  If a limb gets too close to a power line, let the crew trim the tree.  But that's too simple.

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

You Go, Girl

Great video from some celebrity named Ellen.  Yeah, I know, she's a liberal Hollywood type, but it's a great message.  You go, girl!

It's a great message.

Bourbon, You Ask?

Mark D asks in comments:
Lately I've also started on bourbon, I find I really like Jim Beam Black. As a bourbon corner sewer, do you have any other recommendations?
In my opinion, (and this is just my opinion), there are several bourbons that should be on any bar cart, in o particular order.

Wild Turkey 101.  Don't laugh.  It's a lot better bourbon than most people give it credit for being.  Hereabouts, I get it for about $20 a bottle.   At 101 proof, it mixes well with cola, or it can be consumed neat, or with ice.  Really a very versatile mixing bourbon at an economy price point.

Evan Williams Bottled in Bond.  It's a four-year old bourbon bottled at 100 proof.  Very versatile mixer, also good neat (although I drink it with Diet Coke).

Buffalo Trace.  Originally, the Buffalo Trace distillery didn't have a signature bourbon, making a variety of brands, but the resurgence of bourbon made them re-thing that option.  Nowadays, Buffalo Trace bourbon is a very nice, nearly upscale bourbon at a very attractive price point (mid -20s hereabout).  I like it neat, or with just a single ice cube.

Maker's Mark.  It's a wheated bourbon that I like to drink neat.  But, the make a variety they call Makers 46 that I am currently exploring.  Very nicely finished, a small step up from the basic Makers, and not overly expensive.

Those four should be on every shelf.  After that, the sky is the limit.  Buffalo Trace makes a bottom shelf that they call Benchmark.  Great mixing whiskey.  They also make the Weller's line, an upscale ($50-ish) that is very nice in a couple of varieties.

Elija Craig Small Batch is a favorite, as is Jack Daniels, (not technically a bourbon, but I quibble).   I also like Knob Creek (we really love sucking the Knob), and Bullit.  I recently bought a bottle of Four Roses Small Batch, and I'm having fun exploring that bottle.

That should give you a starting point, but those first four should be in any collection, and won't break the bank.

Get Woke, Go Broke

Our local TV station linked a story from CNN today.
(CNN) - Dick’s Sporting Goods has destroyed more than $5 million worth of assault weapons, according to CEO Ed Stack, who made the announcement in a recent interview.He said the company turned the AR-15 rifles into scrap metal to keep them off the street.
They destroyed a bunch of AR-15s, but they didn't destroy a single assault rifle.  They were all semi-auto sporting rifles.  Either the Dick's chairman doesn't know the difference, or he's playing to the media in an attempt to get his company.  I don't know how a company can destroy $5 million i inventory and still keep investors happy, but it looks like he pulled it off.

I'll never darken the door at Dick's but he's not counting on me to be in the core consumer group.

Dry Week

It's Dry Week.  My readers know that I like my whiskey, and enjoy sampling various distilled spirits from around the world and the US.    But, I follow the Magnificent Bastards at the Whiskey Tribe.  One of the things they do is to establish a Dry Week, one week per quarter where  we abstain from alcohol.  It gives us a chance to rest, to give our liver a break, and allows us to double-check, just to make sure there is no problem. 

I started Dry Week at 1800 hrs, this past Saturday.  However, we're planning a party for this Saturday to celebrate Election Day.  We'll have supporters in the shop, where Belle is planning a scrumptious repast, and we'll enjoy each others company as we watch the election returns.  My bourbon collection is respectable, and we will have an assortment of wines.  I have a bottle of Jameson's for those who might like Irish, but my Scotch collection is rather shabby.  I have an old bottle of J&B that someone left over here, ad a bottle of Monkey Shoulder, but I wanted to pick up a single malt.  Scotch prices locally are a bit higher than bourbon.  I can pick up a variety of very nice bourbons in the under-$30 range, but yo'd best add $20 to that when we start considering Scotch.

However, I was lunkiing through the aisles yesterday and found a bottle of Glenmorange that seemed rather nice, and found it at the $30 point.  Reviews from the Whiskey Vault ad from Ralfy seem to indicate that it is a very respectable Highland malt.  10 years old, bottled at 43%, I'll have it on the whiskey cart for the party.

Because it's Dry Week, I can't sample it.  Indeed, I haven't even taken it out of the box.  I think I only have one Scotch drinker coming to the party, and he normally drinks bottom-shelf swill, so there is that.  My Dry Week is over at 1800 hrs Election Night, and I believe I'll start with a dram of this, just to see what Highland Scotch is all about.

Monday, October 07, 2019

Computers - Gaah!

Several months ago I bought a computer for the shop.  Something to edit videos on, to keep books for the club, and as a general record-keeping system and a place to keep match scores.  I bought a little solid-state device, brought it home, updated it, and took it to the shop.

I went out this morning to input some scores, and Excel wouldn't accept input.  It worked last week, but this morning, it won't work at all.  So, I brought it inside to see if I could get it to work.  Evidently, Windows needs to check in with the mother ship once in a while.  Now, it's going through some sort of interminable update cycle.

There are a very few of us who don't acre if a particular device ever connects to the internet.  We might want to take it to the woods to download game-cam photos, or to keep in the shop for light record-keeping.  Someone should make a nice little computer that can be a stand-alone device that does't feel an  overwhelming compulsion to update every time a new feature comes along.

I am coming to despise the connected world.  I don't want the cloud, or whatever OneDrive is.  I simply want to store things on a flash drive and update records occasional.

Sunday, October 06, 2019

A Tale of Two Skillets

I've been cooking on cast iron for as long as I can remember.  I learned at my Momma's knee, who learned at her Momma's knee.  It's versatile, holds heat well, and is basically non-stick.    There is a lot to love about cast iron.

I've never owned a Griswold or Wagner, although when Belle and I married she did bring some old Birmingham Stove skillets into the collection.  I used to have a pretty good selection of Lodge skillets and other cast iron goods, but between moving, a divorce, helping launch kids and the travails of life, I don't have nearly the collection I used to have.  Still, I have enough. 

Belle and I started out with a collection of smallish skillets, but as the grandkid population grew, we needed a bigger skillet, so we bough a new Lodge 12" skillet.  It was "pre-seasoned" and felt like pickup truck liner.  But over the course of several years we managed to get the surface to a point where we could actually cook in it.  (Yes, I know the sand-it-down trick, but never got that motivated.)

Last year, Belle asked me what I wanted for Christmas, ad I told her that I wanted a really nice cast iron skillet, so she bought me a 12" Stargazer.  She ordered it, and the company had hell scaling-up.  I finally took delivery in May.  Yet it has become one of my go-to skillets, the other being that bi Lodge.  We used both of them today.

Belle wanted to cook chicken fried steak with cream gravy, so I used the Stargazer while she used the Lodge.

Belle dropping steaks in the Lodge, my cream gray in the Stargazer on the right
At this stage of the game the difference between the two is the difference between eenie and meenie.  At this point, we've had the Lodge a decade longer, but the Stargazer is holding up its end of the bargain.  The question becomes; s the new skillet worth the additional money?  Well, I have pride of ownership and that's one thing, but they cook exactly alike and cooking in each of them is a joy.

Lodge, left - Stargazer, right
I have it on good authority that the Field skillet very closely approximates the weight and handiness of the old Wagner skillets, but at $125, I don't know if I'll be buying any more high-end skillets.

However, there is a large cast iron chicken-fryer at the flea market I've had my eye on. 

Saturday, October 05, 2019

Saturday Night Music

Haunting melody, profoundly sad song.

And yeah, I passed on the official video.  I like this rendition better.

Opening Day

I slept in until 7:00 this morning, not having the interest or compulsion to go to the squirrel woods.  Belle was already moving around, so I grabbed some coffee and walked outside to greet the day.  We live in a subdivision near a wooded area.

As I sipped my coffee, I watched two squirrels come out of the wooded area, cross the road, and climb a Bradford pear tree in the neighbors yard.   The tree is still in full foliage, and the squirrels disappeared immediately. 

Well Done, fellows.  You're safe until dark.  Hang out in the Bradford pear and you should be fine.

Friday, October 04, 2019

Squirrel Day

Tomorrow is the opening day of squirrel season.  Traditionally in Louisiana it marks the beginning of the upland game season in Louisiana.  Many times, the weather has moderated (but not this year) and the hunters are ready to get out in the woods.  School administrators know about this tradition and work with it, often with good humor. 

My grandson, Zach, goes to Buckeye High School, and they had their traditional Friday night football game The Squirrel Bowl, last night.  Yeah, on Thursday.  This morning, I find that the student council put up a video explaining Squirrel Day in a humorous way.

Happy Squirrel Day, everyone.

Thursday, October 03, 2019

Absolute Silliness

I see that the city of Portland has banned urinals in a remodel of a town building.
The City of Portland has banned urinals in the $195 million remodel of the Portland Building, which houses administrative offices for the city. While urinals use less water than toilets, they are a relic of a bygone era when men and women were recognized as biologically different.
On reflection, Belle and I own four gender-neutral bathrooms.  One in the master suite, one in the hallway, on in the little pool house and one in the shop.  I built two of hose (pool house and shop) with my own hands, drawing inspiration from Belle's sense of style and function, but I don't own a single urinal.

Still, in public buildings, urinals save space and water.  They are efficient.  If the city of Portland wants to embrace inefficiency, that's on them.  They are the government, after all, and governments are not known for being efficient.

But, there are only two genders.  Men and women are different, and I applaud that difference every day.

Biden On Gun Control.

He's gone fill left-wing liberal.  Lets not worry about the guy who wants you to shoot the shotgun off the porch, Lets's worry about the guy who wants full-scale registration.  They're the same guy.

He's talking licensing and registries.  He's talking about extending the NFA to include semi-auto firearms.  He is an existential threat to the 2nd Amendment.

Wednesday, October 02, 2019

That $15 Minimum Wage

One of the dearest dreams of the socialists is to increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour.  Like most socialist dreams, it's proving disastrous.
Gabriela’s isn’t alone. In a survey of 324 full-service restaurants, the New York City Hospitality Alliance found that 76.5 percent of respondents cut staff hours and 36.3 percent eliminated jobs, including whole layers of middle management, in response to mandated wage increases.
You can read the whole thing at the link, but wage controls cost everyone money, not just the management.  People lose jobs, businesses close, and cities lose tax revenue.  The newly jobless are a burden on programs already stretched thin.

Tuesday, October 01, 2019

Irish Drinking Irish

I suppose if you were going to make a video about drinking whiskey, you 'd actually get people who liked whiskey.  Not so much these folks.

That is not your standard whiskey review.

Public Health

My son, who now lives in Los Alamos, NM, sends this photo.

With the caption; "This was in our yard this morning."

I told him that Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever are real things, and he'd best watch out for ticks in the yard.  He agreed.  Hunting is not allowed within a certain distance of residences, but deer in the yard ain't a good idea

Still, I believe that if I saw hat in my yard, I'd be mighty tempted to poke it with a sharp stick.  You know, like comes with an 80 lb compound bow.  Those sharp sticks are very sharp.  But that's just me, and I taught my boy to comply with all game laws.  I'm just saying.

That Dallas Case

You may or may not have heard of the case in Dallas where a police officer goes home, mistakenly thinks she is in her apartment (but she is not), and shoots the resident of the apartment in the mistaken belief that he is a burglar.

The jury heard the case and came back with a verdict.  Guilty.
A Dallas jury has found former police Officer Amber Guyger guilty of murder for fatally shooting a neighbor who lived in the apartment directly above hers last year. She had testified that she entered Botham Jean's unit after a long day at work, thinking it was her own home and that he was an intruder.
That's probably the correct verdict.  Guyger was relying (as I understand her defense) on the Castle Doctrine, and I though that was a stretch.  How do you walk into an apartment and not immediately realize that what you are looking at is not your furniture?
The jury took five hours to decide Guyger had committed murder, rather than a lesser charge of manslaughter. Jurors were to begin considering sentencing options Tuesday afternoon. Guyger faces a possible punishment of five to 99 years in prison.
By all accounts, the victim was sitting in his apartment on his couch, eating ice cream when Guyger came i the door.  The mind boggles.

Paying Attention

I admit that I haven't been paying much attention to national politics recently, immersed as I have been in local politics.  I am running as a local candidate, after all, and most of my attention has been focused there.  But, reading the papers this morning, I am a bit confounded at the news that Speaker Pelosi has decided to move forward on impeaching the President without a formal House vote to do so.
It’s also true, however, that Mrs. Pelosi has no precedent for what she has done, and by eliminating a House vote, she has denied the House minority the opportunity to be heard before Congress begins exercising its most formidable constitutional power short of declaring war: the process of removing an elected president.
I would think that before moving forward, Madam Speaker would first get a feel for the actual vote, but I'm sure that she has vote-counters on her staff.  I would like to know how individual Congress-critters voted.  Still, this sounds like an awfully fascist move on the Speaker's part.  Impeachment by fiat can't be a good idea.

I also see that Mr. Douthat, in another paper, is imploring Republican senators to go along with this farce.
That competition would be the next phase of our fast-forward: With Trump gone, everyone from Haley and Carlson to Marco Rubio and Josh Hawley could jump into an accelerated primary campaign against the unloved Republican “incumbent,” Mike Pence. The result would be, in effect, the 2024 G.O.P. primary four years early — with the possibility of either pre-empting a President Elizabeth Warren or preventing a Trump second term’s likely demolition of the G.O.P…
The thought of a Trump second term scares the living hell out of these people.  Just like the thought of a second Obama term scared the hell out of me.  Yet, we lived through it and I'm sure that the Democrats will live through a Trump second term.  They won't like it, but by-God, they'll get over it, and perhaps not field a candidate in 2024 that isn't bat-shit crazy (which is what the current crop of Democrat wannabees is shaping up to be).

Not one of their smears has taken hold, not one.  And, they are becoming increasingly strident in their demand that something, something, must be done to save the country.  Yet, not many of us out here in flyover country are interested in being saved.  We're simply content to lead our lives ad go about out business.

The Democrats have still not accepted the fact that Donald Trump won the election, fair ad square.  They are simply livid that they failed to resonate with huge chunks of the American people.