Intel's Ronler Acres Plant

Silicon Forest
If the type is too small, Ctrl+ is your friend

Wednesday, November 28, 2018


Furnace Troubleshooting: Hot Surface Ignitor

Messing about with our furnace I got to wondering about the ignitor (Blogger wants to spell it with an e, not an o, but o is correct). I kind of sort of thought that it was a spark ignition device, but when we pulled ours out, I could see that it was not. It's just a resistance heating element. Okay then. So it must get pretty hot, but we use resistance heating in toasters and small room heaters, and you need to careful with them because they can set stuff like clothes and curtains on fire, so sure, you could use a resistance heater to ignite the gas in the furnace.

Hot Surface Ignitor

So how hot does it need to be in order to ignite the gas-air mixture?
Natural gas has a high ignition temperature, approximately 1163 degrees Fahrenheit. - ERPUD
That's a little warm. Paper, as we all know, thanks to Ray Bradbury, ignites at Fahrenheit 451. So our Hot Surface Ignitor (HSI) must likewise get pretty hot.
The HSI heats up to around 1,800°F to 2,500°F and glows red-hot. - The Spruce
That's almost hot enough to melt steel (2500 degree F). So what are these things made of?
In 1993, the furnace industry moved away from the standing pilot light ignition system in all furnaces. One of the most popular styles of ignition used today is a Hot Surface Igniter (HSI). The first HSI’s looked like a “fork” and were a silicon carbide material. While this type of igniter is very dependable, they are fragile. The newer style HSI is made out of Silicon Nitride, which is a more durable material. This is the type of igniter that our technicians stock on their trucks. While they are more expensive to purchase up front, you can expect a longer life out of them. - Santa Fe Air

Efing Whirlpool

Water heater flamed out again this morning. Fine, time to see if Whirlpool has a solution for this problem that has been going on for years. Call customer service and the first thing Robo-cop wants me to do is tell them my phone number. WTF? Everybody and their dog all over the world has caller ID and these clowns can't figure out what my phone number is? This isn't good. I get to a person in short order, who transfers me to 'water heater technical support' where I get to listen to some horribly distorted muzak. Why do they do that? Is it because they are too cheap to buy a decent radio? Or is it a deliberate attempt to drive people away?

Whatever. After a few minutes Robo-cop comes back on the line and asks if I would like to have them call me back instead of just waiting. Sure, that would put a stop to the noise coming out of my phone. And hey, it appears Robo-cop knows my phone number after all. Bozos.

A few minutes later I get a call back and the operator starts interrogating me: name, rank, serial number, address, blah, blah. I answer her first couple of questions, but then I tell her no more, I want to talk about the water heater. We exchange a bit more and then it becomes apparent that they still don't have a solution for this problem. Call me when you have one.

I suspect there is a 'weak' electrical connection somewhere between the controller and the sensor and any little change in temperature causes the connection to fail which causes the controller to flag the sensor as bad. Then I come out and glare at it, and the connector contracts in fright, contact is restored and the water heater lights up again.

I could be wrong about all this, but I can't imagine what else could be causing these intermittent failures. I suppose it's time to get out the soldering iron and make some new connections.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Norman at Nor-Mon

Failed Furnace Igniter Control Relay
I've had a spate of electrical problems recently. The hot water heater I replaced a few years ago has gone out and I had to relight it three or four times in the last month. Since it seems to work fine most of the time, I suspect a connection in the wires that lead to the temperature sensors is at fault. The weather turned cold about a month ago, the water heater is in the garage, so it's going to feel those temperature changes. The best I can imagine right now is the change in temperature caused the metal in the connectors to contract just enough to lose contact. I unplugged the sensor wires from the the controller today and then plugged them back in. This might have dislodged any insulating oxide that had formed (i.e. corrosion) that could affect this connection. Remember these are very low current, very low voltage circuits so even the slightest barrier to conduction could easily cause failure.

Reliability has always been a bit of a black art to me. To make a machine is a pretty straight forward business. There are numbers and laws for strength and pressure and power, so if you do your math right you can make a machine that will run. How long that machine will run is another matter.

According to one theory of business, reliability is a key feature for gaining sales. If the business leader subscribes to this theory, at least some money is going to be spent on investigating reliability. The longer a product is around, and the more popular it is, the more it will improve. It may take a while, but electro-mechanical devices have been around for 100 years now, and I think they could do better with electrical connections. I am a little aggravated by this, I had to take a cold shower this morning.

A few days ago I fired up the furnace for the first time this fall. It didn't turn on. It's not a big deal, we use the gas fireplace for most of our heating. We only use the furnace when it gets really cold. But if we're going to have a furnace, we should keep it in working order. We might really want it one of these days. The furnace has failed twice before. Both times I called a furnace guy to come take a look at it. Once the only problem was that the filter was clogged. Cost me $100. That was embarrassing. The other time the igniter had burned out. This time Osmany and I opened it, poked around and discovered that the controller was kaput. Specifically the relay the supplies current to the igniter had failed. If I could have found a relay with a 24 VDC coil and 10 Amp, 120 VAC rated contacts, we could have replaced it ourselves. But I looked on Mouser and Digikey and couldn't find one. Maybe I wasn't holding my mouth right.

I looked on the Internet for a 50A50-112 furnace controller, but didn't find anything. Found an outfit in Pennsylvania selling something similar, but when I called them the couldn't find anything that would work. So now I look for furnace parts in Portland and I find two. I think this tells you something about the reliability of furnaces right there. Everyone has a car and there are hundreds of repair shops in Portland. I think furnaces might be a tad more reliable than cars. Of course, furnaces are much simpler than cars.

I called Nor-Mon with my part number and he tells me to bring it in and he'll match it up. So today Osmany and I drive into Portland and visit with Norman at Nor-Mon. The man talked incessantly about everything under the sun, his family, vacations, furnace controllers, devices you strap on your shoes that let you walk on ice (they have little carbide studs, kind of like studded snow tires for your car), the hardware business. I had to drag Osmany away or we might still be there.

There used to be thousands of different furnace controllers. Imagine with a population of 330 million people, we probably have somewhere in the neighborhood of a 100 million furnaces. If a production run of furnaces had 10,000 units, and each production run had their own unique controller, you would need 10,000 different controllers to control all those furnaces. A lot of them were probably minor variations of previous models. Somebody wanted a new feature, or they wanted more or different connection points, or they just wanted it to look different. Anyway,  a few years ago, White-Rodgers saw all this madness and decided to do something about it. They figured out what difference were and made a controller that can be configured as any one of a hundred different models. Now they only need a hundred different controllers to ensure that they will have viable replacement on hand to cover the 10,000 different controllers that have been deployed all over the country. (All these numbers are just supposition on my part.)

Anyway, Norman looked in his file of index cards. He had hundreds, maybe even a thousand, all arranged in cardboard trays and taking up six feet of valuable counter space. He looked in his file and found a replacement that ought to work. It has the model number of my controller, along with about a hundred others, printed right there on the box.I bought it for $200, which included a 5% surcharge to cover whatever tariffs are going to be coming into effect as part of Trump's trade war with China.

Monday, November 26, 2018

All I want for Christmas

Gifts for the Handyman

Shopping for new tools is one of my favorite pastimes. It's kind of pointless though if you aren't actually going to buy anything. Just about every day that I work on my son's house I find I need another tool, which gives me an excuse to go shopping, so I've been having some fun. Even picked up a garden hose at Harbor Freight. It wasn't the combo model with the built in extension cord. Too bad, that would have been exciting.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Pic of the Day

Steam locomotives of the Chicago & North Western Railway in the roundhouse at the Chicago rail yards (December 1942)
I haven't been reading much, mostly, I suspect, because I haven't been sleeping all that well. But when I sit down for lunch today I pick up a book that's been sitting on a pile that's due to be sold to Powell's and it pretty much captivated me.

The books is methland by Nick Reading and it is about the methamphetamine craze (epidemic) that swept the nation, especially the way it has affected small town America. The first town he focuses on is Oelwein, Iowa (I'm still reading the prologue.), which has a roundhouse. Cool! I like roundhouses, so I go looking for pictures, but I don't find much. The photo above is the best of the lot and it has a tenuous connection to Oelwein: The Chicago & North Western Railway extended to Oelwein Iowa.

Looking at Google Maps, it looks like there is still a big rail operation there. There is a big yard with 100's of cars. Looking at the Open Railway Map, you can see that the only active line goes to Des Moines, all the other tracks heading out of Oelwein have been abandoned. I suspect the only reason they are keeping the track to Des Moines open is that Oelwein has a big yard where they can store a large number of railroad cars.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Pic of the Day

UN Building from a 1950 advertisement in Glass Digest
Construction of the United Nations Secretariat Building started in 1948 and was completed in 1952.

Scanning introduced artifacts that are not visible in the original printed image. Scanning at a higher resolution didn't help, made it worse actually.

Via Dennis.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs | Official Trailer [HD] | Netflix

Joel & Ethan Coen are at it again, or perhaps I should say they are still at it. Six stories from the Old West. The scenery is wonderful, the dialog is spectacular, the stories generally end grimly. Released earlier this year and already on Netflix.

Cuban Doctors

Cuba-Brazil: The Battle of the White Coats
Posted on by
Cuban doctors who stay in Brazil will be forbidden entry to the island for eight years. (14ymedio)
14ymedio, Yoani Sanchez, Generation Y, Havana, 19 November 2018 – We saw the conflict coming. From the moment Jair Bolsonero won the elections in Brazil, Cuba’s official discourse increased in rhetoric against him and prepared public opinion for the rupture that was imminent.
The straw that broke the camel’s back for the Plaza of the Revolution was the statements by the president-elect in which he warned that he would change the conditions of the agreement under which more than 8,300 physicians from Cuba work in Brazil’s Mais Medicos (More Doctors) program.
Last Wednesday, tensions escalated to their highest point when the Cuban Minister of Public Health announced that he was cancelling the contract and removing his professionals from the South American country. The official notice, read out on all of the island’s the news programs, repeated that Bolsonaro’s threats would not be tolerated but deftly ignored some of his words. Particularly those where the rightist leader insisted that the Cuban doctors should receive their full salaries and be able to bring their families to stay with them while they were in the program.
The Cuban government has made medical missions a lucrative business. With professionals deployed in more than 60 countries, the money raised by this practice is Cuba’s largest source of foreign currency, estimated to exceed $11 billion annually.
In the case of Brazil, Havana pockets 75% of the 3,300 dollar salary Brazil pays for each doctor, while the health professionals only receive a quarter of the total. On the Island, in a bank account which they do not have access to, their “Cuban” monthly salary of about 60 dollars accumulates, which they can only collect if they return to the island.
Those who leave the Mais Medicos program under their own will are considered deserters and are banned from entering Cuba for eight years. During the time the Workers’ Party (PT) was at the head of the Brazilian government, the doctors who escaped from their contracts were pursued by the Brazilian police and could be returned to the Island if they were arrested. None were allowed to bring their family members to be with them during their missions, and they were often housed in overcrowded hostels shared with other doctors, nurses and hospital technicians.
Despite so many difficulties and the low earnings, the missions were very much desired by the doctors because they were able to buy goods that are not available in Cuban markets, and to make contacts that would later allow them to return to Brazil privately, with a contract to work in some clinic.
Beyond its ability to provide healthcare for many Brazilians in the poorest areas of the country, the Mais Medicos program hid a political operation to build support for the leftist Workers’ Party and guarantee it the votes of the lower classes. It was clear that Cuba’s interest in this outcome was not going to continue with Bolsonaro in charge, thus it was only a matter of time before Castroism removed its healthcare professionals from Brazil. It only remains now to ask how many of them will actually return to the island.
The president-elect of Brazil has announced that he will grant political asylum to all Cuban doctors who request it and it is expected that a considerable number will benefit from this offer. Those who do so will lose the right to return to their homeland for many long years, they will be called traitors and, most likely, their families on the island will be under pressure. The battle of the white coats has barely begun.
Stole this article from Generation Y. My daughter's father-in-law is a doctor working in this program, although he is in Venezuela, not Brazil. He's been there two years and has another year to go before he can return home.

I find it curious that even though Cuba is essentially impoverished, they are still able to produce more doctors than they need. Or maybe they are just providing medical services to those who can pay for it and their own people will just have to do without, which makes them just like us imperialist running dogs,  whom they denigrate and despise.

Pic of the Day

Nothing more American than this (1942)
. . . thrilling days of yesteryear . . .

Monday, November 19, 2018

Catching a Lyft back home

Tonight's driver hails from Basra, Iraq. He got a degree in English (British) Literature from an Arabic teacher. He spent a few years working as an interpreter for the US Navy, which means he got preferential treatment when he applied for a Green Card here in the US, it only took him two days. He had high hopes when he came to the US, but he's been here several years and has become resigned to his lot which is working as a security guard 3 days a week and driving for Lyft the other 4.

When I asked him which were crazier, the Iraqis or the Iranians, he said "that is a good question", but there is no answer because they are equally crazy. 90% of the population of Iraq is Muslim, half are Sunni's, who get their direction from Iran, and the other half are Shiites, who get their direction from Saudi Arabia. Or maybe it's the other way around, I can never keep it straight.

When I read the news reports about all the refugees trying to get out of the middle East and into Europe, I am thinking why don't they stay at home and fix their own problems. And then I run into a guy like this and I realize that a few rational people have no hope of bringing law and order to any of these insane-i-lands. Maybe if we put Chevron in charge things would change. Maybe even for the better.

Saturday, November 17, 2018


Mission: Impossible - Fallout (2018) - Official Trailer - Paramount Pictures
Tom Cruise is at it again. The stunts are spectacular and true to the Mission Impossible tradition, totally over the top. I wouldn't be surprised if he gets killed making one of these movies.

The fight scene in Paris was amazing. The helicopter chase scene in Kasmir would be more amazing except it's a little hard to follow. It's going so fast and they are going through such contortions that it's a little hard to tell which way is up. The cliff hanger at the end is an amazing progression of bad to worse to no-way. But you know our hero will save the day, and he does.

There are a couple of bits of philosophy that might be about anarchy, but I think they are just some gobble-de-gook that the screenwriters came up with because it sounded cool. Any similarity to Scientology is just coincidence. or is it? Come on conspiracy buffs, get those mental gears going and give us a theory.

$20 pay-per-view on the big screen TV in our room at the Fairmont Kea Lani on Maui.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Catching a Lyft to Hawaii

First time taking Lyft on our own today. We took Uber when we were in San Francisco a few years ago, but one of our kids arranged that. SWMBO installed the Lyft App a couple of days ago and arranged for a ride to the airport. $50 more or less. Last time I checked parking at the Economy lot at PDX was $10 a day, so it’s going to cost us a few bucks more, but no schlepping bags onto the shuttle bus, nor driving for miles to the back of beyond to find a parking space, plus I don’t have to remember where the heck I parked the car.

The Lyft driver was entertaining. Born and raised in St. Johns, he’s lived in Seattle and Las Vegas and now lives in Cornelius with his brother and two yappy dogs. He trained as a chef and a front-end software developer, but he makes more money driving for Lyft than he can make in either of those two occupations. He rents his car ( a Mazda 3) from Hertz for $209 a week, but Lyft gives him a rebate of $180 if he gives 105 rides a week. Lyft takes 25% off the top of the fare plus $2.50 per ride. He puts 50,000 miles on his car every year.

When he was a kid, it was a popular sport with street racers to go up on the Fremont bridge in the middle of the night, like 3 or 4 in morning, block off all lanes while one guy would do donuts in the middle of the bridge. Eventually thiis activity made the national news.

Lombard is popular with street racers because it is a long straight section with no traffic lights and, so far, no cameras. Street racing has dropped off recently, possibly because the police take a dim view of it.

I sometimes wonder why it took Uber and Lyft so long to get going, but now that I think about it, I realize thay depend on their customers having smart phones, so they had to wait until a sizable percentage of the population had them.

Taxis are really a criminal racket. Don’t know if all cities follow New York’s model, but New York is (was?) a real mess. To operate a taxi, you needed a medallion, and medallions cost $70K. The vig on that is going to be a couple hundred bucks a week, which really cuts into the amount a driver can earn. So I am glad taxis are going the way of the coffee cartels.

Our flight left PDX around sunset, so there was absolutely nothing to see, not that there would have been anthing but water anyway. There were two babies on the flight. One was pretty quiet, the other screamed and cried about half the time. Some of his rants sounded like ‘I bite you’. There was a child sitting behind us who sneezed a few times and whenever she did, it sounded like a shreik.

Where does all the noise come from? We’re cruising along at 500 knots and the noise level in the cabin is a dull roar. You can’t understand someone speaking quietly unless they are right next to you. Yes, jet engines are very loud, but is all the noise coming from the engines? Or is some of it coming just from the air rushing over the fuselage at 500 MPH?

They distribute tablets to people who want to watch movies. The seats have USB outlets on the back for charging your phones. The pocket on the back of the seat in front of you is now made of coarse netting instead of solid fabric.There is also a second pocket near the top that holds the magazine, menu, air sickness bag and safety card. This pocket has a single support strap to hold the materials, so it isn’t really a pocket either. The seats only recline about two inches. Not hardly worth bothering with. The headphones they distribute with the tablets are disposable. Can’t be bothered with cleaning and sanitizing them I guess. One overhead luggage bin appears to be dedicated to small oxygen cylinders.

How did Captain Cook discover the Hawaiian islands? The big mountain is 3 miles tall, so from the top of the mast of a sailing ship you should be able to see it from 150 miles away, which means there would be a 300 mile wide window where they would have been able to see it. But what are the odds? A few miles north or south and they would have missed it completely. Weird, man.

Monday, November 12, 2018

The Man in the High Castle

The Man in the High Castle Season 1 - Official Comic-Con Trailer | Prime Video

We just finished season one and it just occurred to me why conservatives are such stick-in-the-muds. It's because they realize how fragile our civilization is, how easy it would to be to tip it into darkness and destruction and how bad that would be. So anything new and different needs to be measured against whatever upsetting effects it might have, and since there is no way to tell what those effects might be, the conservative approach is to go slowly.

A comfortable life is a rare thing. We look around at our neighbors and community and everything looks fine. But for a good portion of the world things are not so good. Famine, murder and mayhem are the order of the day for a zillion people every day. Having a comfortable life is the gold standard for civilized people.

This show is very annoying. The lead couple (Frank & Julianna) are not your cool, calculating secret agents, they are a young couple that have gotten drug into maelstrom and are trying to cope as best they can. Stir in conflicting loyalties, double agents and double dealing and I began to see how they might be a bit confused as to just what to do. James Bond never has this problem. Of course, James Bond gets to rid the script, so he knows who the bad guys are from the beginning.


How To Draw Mushrooms On An Oscilloscope With Sound

Yet another obscure subculture of people who draw pictures by feeding audio signals to an oscilloscope. A post on Reddit got me started, a comment pointed to this page, where I found this video. This one gives a pretty good overview of the basics. Creating a signal that is pleasant to listen to and generates some sort of image is a bit of a trick.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Armistice Day

Anthem Veterans Memorial
I've seen a bunch of posts about Armistice Day today. I wasn't going to say anything, but then this picture caught my eye. Wikipedia has the details.

WW1 was a disaster of epic proportions. I suspect that it was at least due in part to the population explosion of the 19th century. I suspect that the violence we see everyday is due to our natural propensity for hate. It would be nice if we could eliminate that, but it is part of our nature and no doubt played a large part in getting us where we are today. So maybe it's just something we are going to have to live with. The best we can do is to channel that rage and aggression into non-destructive endeavors, but even that may backfire on us. Keep building new things without destroying any old things and pretty soon you are going to be walled in on every side. And then what are you going to do, Bucky?

Saturday, November 10, 2018


X-bracing inside garage
If I have been a little light on posting lately it might be because I have been busy helping patch up younger son's garage. It really needs a completely new roof and siding, but we don't want to get into that until the house has been brought up to snuff, so we are just patching up the garage enough to get through the rainy season. Plus we raised the 'ceiling' by replacing the ceiling joists with some X-braces. Biggest problem this week is getting the dumpster load of debris certified as 'asbestos free'. Criminently, it's going in the landfill. Who cares if it is full of asbestos?


Kinescope Recording of Big Shot-2 Satellite Balloon Suborbital Inflation

Back in the early 60's, NASA's Project Echo put a couple of very large balloons into orbit. Echo 1 was 100 feet in diameter and Echo 2 was 135 feet in diameter. I remember looking up at the night sky when I was a little kid and seeing them sail by. Dots of light is all they were. Or maybe that was Sputnik. Whatever.

Before they launched these giant mylar balloons into orbit, the launched a couple of balloons 250 miles into space to test their inflation scheme. Low earth orbit, which is where the International Space Station is, is about 100 miles, so they were well up there. This was back in the 60's, so putting something into orbit was a real stretch. Launching something straight up was much easier. Putting something in orbit requires accelerating to around five miles per second. Sending something 250 miles straight up only required reaching a velocity of around two miles per second. Much, much easier.

The first one (Big Shot 1) failed when "the balloon was torn apart due to rapid inflation". The second one (shown in the video above) was a success. This video comes to us through a Rube Goldberg combination of technology:
A Kinescope is a film recording of a television screen. It really is that simple: a film camera aimed at a TV. But why? Primarily because early videotape was unreliable, expensive, and low quality. Many early television broadcasts were recorded via Kinescope before videotapes became available. NASA used Kinescope to record live feeds from space off of video monitors. - The Unwritten Record
The balloons themselves were pretty amazing.
Unlike Echo 1, Echo 2's skin was rigidizable, and the balloon was capable of maintaining its shape without a constant internal pressure. This removed the requirement for a long term supply of inflation gas, and meant that the balloon could easily survive strikes from micrometeoroids. The balloon was constructed from "a 0.35 mil (9 µm) thick mylar film sandwiched between two layers of 0.18 mil (4.5 µm) thick aluminum foil and bonded together." The balloon was inflated to such a level as required to slightly plastically deform the metal layers of the laminate, while leaving the polymer in the elastic range. This resulted in a rigid and very smooth spherical shell. - Wikipedia
I think what this means is that they used enough pressure to slightly stretch the balloon material. For a big balloon like this, you would need a great deal of pressure to stretch the whole thing. On the other hand, you have an enormous volume of gas doing the pressing, and the material is very thin (.0007 inches, less than a sheet of typing paper), so maybe they only needed a small amount of pressure. In any case they used enough pressure to stretch the aluminum so it stayed stretched (kind of like stretching a slug of aluminum into a beer can), but not so much that it ripped the mylar film.

Morse Code Decoder

I tried decoding the beeps in the video. They sound like they could be Morse Code, but I couldn't make much sense of it. Seems to be something like N-R-F-R-E-0 repeated over and over again.

Via Indy Tom

Friday, November 9, 2018


Paradise California
I thought fire season was over. Guess not. Paradise was wiped out.

Flying over Paradise California
Notice the clear view of the ground on the screen

Picking up water to fight the Woolsey fire
Not Paradise, but still California
Zuma Beach is near Los Angeles. Paradise is in the Sierra Nevada mountains.

Polarized tape Art

Polarized tape Art by Dino Tomic

I sort of knew that Scotch tape polarized light, but I've never made use of this property. I am surprised by all the colors. I can see (imagine) that you could get different shades of gray by altering the orientation of the tape. (Tape that runs vertical would be white / clear while tape that runs horizontally would be black / opaque. I don't know where the colors are coming from.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Hot Glue

Glue Gun Stanley
This is for my friend Jack. His go-to solution for fixing anything is hot glue.

Via Reddit.


Ballot Boxes in storage

I didn't vote because, well, nobody is talking about any of things I think are important. It's all just noise. Jeff Deist sums it up pretty well:
By any objective measure, the ideological and policy disagreements between the national Democrat and Republican parties are not significant. Both accept the central tenets of domestic and foreign interventionism, both accept the federal government as the chief organizing principle for American society, and both view politics simply as a fight for control of state apparatus.

Similarly, differences between policies actually enacted by Mr. Trump and the existing Congress and those likely to have been enacted by Mrs. Clinton and the same Congress are fairly small. While Mr. Trump alarms the Left with his tone and tenor, his actual views on taxes, spending, debt, trade, guns, immigration (the "Muslim ban" was neither) and war (unfortunately his good campaign rhetoric is largely abandoned) plainly comport with the general thrust of Clinton's neo-liberalism.

Today's ugly midterm elections are about style rather than substance, party rather than principle, and power rather than ideas. Americans do not much argue about whether we are governed by DC, and only slightly over how we are governed by DC. But we argue viciously about who governs us from DC.
Via Bayou Renaissance Man

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Motorcycle of the Day

1939 Jawa 350 OHV
Take a sparse functional design, realize it using some steel, aluminum and red paint, add a healthy serving of chrome plating and I'm in love.

Jawa was started in 1929 and is still in business in the Czech Republic.

From a 2012 classic motor vehicle show. Via Posthip Scott.

Saturday, November 3, 2018

The Fifth Head of Cefberus by Gene Wolfe

The Fifth Head of Cefberus by Gene Wolfe
An engaging story. A mix of a Victorian explorer's journal, mystic crystal revelation and Franz Kafka.

We have a pair of habitable worlds orbiting a common sun and perhaps orbiting each other. One world may have had some aborigines who were able to change their appearance to appear like humans.

We have some people, but for the most part they seem to be devoid of human warmth. Gangsters and cannibals, mostly.

There are three separate stories that are thinly linked. It's an engaging story but it doesn't go anywhere and left me feeling disappointed.

Friday, November 2, 2018


Oh Henry 4:25 Candy Bar

Rumor has it that 4:20 was the time a group of stoners would get together to get stoned. Getting stoned sometimes results in getting the munchies, and Oh Henry is capitalizing on our restored freedoms.