Makin’ Progress

Yeah…the title says it all. We been makin’ progress on the house but still have some to go…but we’re sort of in a hold pattern until we get the stuff from our storage unit up in VA. As I write this Monday morning…the spare bedroom still looks like a warehouse and the office looks a bit less like one…we’re waiting on our roll top desk to be able to finish the office and waiting on the bed for the spare bedroom until we get all the boxes from VA unpacked.

We’ve had a busy 10 days in the house though…working some every day to get things organized and the master, kitchen, and living room are pretty much done although there will be some minor changes when we get the storage unit stuff. We’ve also headed out to the Elks a couple of times, ate broasted chicken at Steve’s Place one night…and grilled on the lanai a bit.

The past couple of days it’s been a bit cool…lows in the 40s and 50s and highs in the low 70s but starting tomorrow weather will be more normal with low 60s and high 70s to low 80s. On the other hand…we are heading out early Wednesday morning to catch our flight to Richmond via Dulles in the DC area…weather up there for our visit will be lows in the high 30s to mid 40s and highs in the 50s…but it’s not supposed to snow while we are there so that’s good. After arriving on Wednesday…we’ll spend Thursday and Friday sorting out the storage unit to see if there was anything termite damaged besides the table we already know we lost and piling things to be tossed out to one side. Saturday morning…we’ll take Bryan’s stuff over to his house and then load ours…although we may load it all at once and put his near the door if we decide the truck is enough for that…and once his stuff is dropped off we’ll have pizza with our loading crew, say our “until next times to the kids and Alex”. Sunday morning we’ll start the trek home in the U-haul truck…it’s about 900 miles straight down I-95 to Jax then down US-301 to I-75 in Ocala then to home. We’ll take our usual bypass route around the Jax beltway to miss the traffic there and the construction on the short portion of I-10 we would have been on…we’ll overnight somewhere between Savannah and Brunswick GA before continuing on home on Monday. Tuesday morning will be truck unload day…our friend Jeff is going to come over and help with the stuff Connie can’t lift easily…we’ll unload all the boxes into the garage and spare bedroom warehouse and put the heavy stuff (all furniture) in place where it needs to be.

Yesterday after Mass…Connie went out on the lanai to sit in the sun for a few minutes as she was cold and it was warmer outside than in…and just as quickly called for Neil to come out with the camera as we had a visitor in the pond besides Ragnar. Sure enough…he popped out and discovered a male Snowy Egret with his mating plumage about half grown out hunting lunch out there. He snuck out the side door, setup his tripod and grabbed a few…well, 200…photos of the critter. I’ve sorted ‘em down for ya so there are only 14 below. I coulda cut it down a bit more…but Snowy’s are such beautiful birds, especially when it is mating season…so I didn’t do that.

He spotted Ragnar near out side of the pond before he focused in on the Snowy.

D75 5180

Looking at his rear end and the back of his head…you can see the mating plumage…composed of really wispy light feathers rather than the normal flight feathers like the wings have or the body feathers.

D75 5184

This one shows why this bird is also known as Golden Slippers…the brightly colored feet are actually the normal feeding mechanism. Slight aside here…how come some long legged wading birds are called herons and some are egrets…and what’s the difference. They are both members of the same biological family but are basically divided into the two based on several characteristics. Egrets are primarily white, have much greater amounts of mating plumage than herons, and the name egret is derived from the French word aigrette which means plumage feathers as these feathers are used for hat decorations. Egrets also fly with their neck extended whereas a heron retracts it. Herons are also generally larger and more colorful. Anyways…back to Snowy feeding mechanism. Most wading birds are what one would call ambush predators. They stand very still in the water and move slowly around by lifting one leg free or almost free of the water when moving it then putting it straight down to the bottom…essentially waiting on their prey to come to them then striking downwards to grab it. Snowy egrets use a completely different mechanism normally. They shuffle their golden feet along the bottom string up prey from the bottom and/or using the brightly colored feet to attract their prey (thinking it is something for the prey to eat). They then strike down and grab the prey. This one however…seemed to have a different mechanism than we’ve seen before…rather than the slow walk it mostly flew 8 or 10 feet to pounce on top of something. It must have done that a dozen times while we watched it.

D75 5185

From the above shot…it went about 10 feet and landed then almost immediately came back to the original location. You can get a good sense of the 24 inch or so height and 5-6 foot wingspan in both of these shots.

D75 5193

Ah…gotta scratch that itch…which gives another great show of the breeding plumage.

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A short flight series ending in head underwater grabbing whatever it was he was catching…it was swallowed too quickly to get any idea of what it was.

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D75 5263

D75 5264

D75 5265

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Followed almost immediately by another back to the right.

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D75 5343

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All in all…a pretty decently spent 20 minutes or so.

On to interesting stuff found on the net.

I thought the detail in this was pretty incredible for a marble sculpture…carved 19 inch bust of the veiled Virgin Mary by Giovanni Strazza in the 1850s. Pretty amazing detail in the folds of the veil and how it slightly obscures the face…and he did all this with a hammer and chisel.

Strazza VeiledVirgin

NotSureWhoThisIs

PeeOnTheFence

MedicineSideEffect

Seniors will appreciate this one.

WhyAmIHere

ItsABeer

OldCarGuySentToNursingHome

And married men will appreciate these two.

UsedAgainstYou

Celibacy

And let’s not leave out the married women.

MenAndBabies

Don’t ferget…Daylight Savings Time starts this weekend.

StonehengeDST

Cyas.

Posted in Critters, Homebody, Nature | 2 Comments

Makin’ Progress

Yeah…the title says it all. We been makin’ progress on the house but still have some to go…but we’re sort of in a hold pattern until we get the stuff from our storage unit up in VA. As I write this Monday morning…the spare bedroom still looks like a warehouse and the office looks a bit less like one…we’re waiting on our roll top desk to be able to finish the office and waiting on the bed for the spare bedroom until we get all the boxes from VA unpacked.

We’ve had a busy 10 days in the house though…working some every day to get things organized and the master, kitchen, and living room are pretty much done although there will be some minor changes when we get the storage unit stuff. We’ve also headed out to the Elks a couple of times, ate broasted chicken at Steve’s Place one night…and grilled on the lanai a bit.

The past couple of days it’s been a bit cool…lows in the 40s and 50s and highs in the low 70s but starting tomorrow weather will be more normal with low 60s and high 70s to low 80s. On the other hand…we are heading out early Wednesday morning to catch our flight to Richmond via Dulles in the DC area…weather up there for our visit will be lows in the high 30s to mid 40s and highs in the 50s…but it’s not supposed to snow while we are there so that’s good. After arriving on Wednesday…we’ll spend Thursday and Friday sorting out the storage unit to see if there was anything termite damaged besides the table we already know we lost and piling things to be tossed out to one side. Saturday morning…we’ll take Bryan’s stuff over to his house and then load ours…although we may load it all at once and put his near the door if we decide the truck is enough for that…and once his stuff is dropped off we’ll have pizza with our loading crew, say our “until next times to the kids and Alex”. Sunday morning we’ll start the trek home in the U-haul truck…it’s about 900 miles straight down I-95 to Jax then down US-301 to I-75 in Ocala then to home. We’ll take our usual bypass route around the Jax beltway to miss the traffic there and the construction on the short portion of I-10 we would have been on…we’ll overnight somewhere between Savannah and Brunswick GA before continuing on home on Monday. Tuesday morning will be truck unload day…our friend Jeff is going to come over and help with the stuff Connie can’t lift easily…we’ll unload all the boxes into the garage and spare bedroom warehouse and put the heavy stuff (all furniture) in place where it needs to be.

Yesterday after Mass…Connie went out on the lanai to sit in the sun for a few minutes as she was cold and it was warmer outside than in…and just as quickly called for Neil to come out with the camera as we had a visitor in the pond besides Ragnar. Sure enough…he popped out and discovered a male Snowy Egret with his mating plumage about half grown out hunting lunch out there. He snuck out the side door, setup his tripod and grabbed a few…well, 200…photos of the critter. I’ve sorted ‘em down for ya so there are only 14 below. I coulda cut it down a bit more…but Snowy’s are such beautiful birds, especially when it is mating season…so I didn’t do that.

He spotted Ragnar near out side of the pond before he focused in on the Snowy.

D75 5180

Looking at his rear end and the back of his head…you can see the mating plumage…composed of really wispy light feathers rather than the normal flight feathers like the wings have or the body feathers.

D75 5184

This one shows why this bird is also known as Golden Slippers…the brightly colored feet are actually the normal feeding mechanism. Slight aside here…how come some long legged wading birds are called herons and some are egrets…and what’s the difference. They are both members of the same biological family but are basically divided into the two based on several characteristics. Egrets are primarily white, have much greater amounts of mating plumage than herons, and the name egret is derived from the French word aigrette which means plumage feathers as these feathers are used for hat decorations. Egrets also fly with their neck extended whereas a heron retracts it. Herons are also generally larger and more colorful. Anyways…back to Snowy feeding mechanism. Most wading birds are what one would call ambush predators. They stand very still in the water and move slowly around by lifting one leg free or almost free of the water when moving it then putting it straight down to the bottom…essentially waiting on their prey to come to them then striking downwards to grab it. Snowy egrets use a completely different mechanism normally. They shuffle their golden feet along the bottom string up prey from the bottom and/or using the brightly colored feet to attract their prey (thinking it is something for the prey to eat). They then strike down and grab the prey. This one however…seemed to have a different mechanism than we’ve seen before…rather than the slow walk it mostly flew 8 or 10 feet to pounce on top of something. It must have done that a dozen times while we watched it.

D75 5185

From the above shot…it went about 10 feet and landed then almost immediately came back to the original location. You can get a good sense of the 24 inch or so height and 5-6 foot wingspan in both of these shots.

D75 5193

Ah…gotta scratch that itch…which gives another great show of the breeding plumage.

D75 5203

A short flight series ending in head underwater grabbing whatever it was he was catching…it was swallowed too quickly to get any idea of what it was.

D75 5262

D75 5263

D75 5264

D75 5265

D75 5318

D75 5331

Followed almost immediately by another back to the right.

D75 5342

D75 5343

D75 5344

All in all…a pretty decently spent 20 minutes or so.

On to interesting stuff found on the net.

I thought the detail in this was pretty incredible for a marble sculpture…carved 19 inch bust of the veiled Virgin Mary by Giovanni Strazza in the 1850s. Pretty amazing detail in the folds of the veil and how it slightly obscures the face…and he did all this with a hammer and chisel.

Strazza VeiledVirgin

NotSureWhoThisIs

PeeOnTheFence

MedicineSideEffect

Seniors will appreciate this one.

WhyAmIHere

ItsABeer

OldCarGuySentToNursingHome

And married men will appreciate these two.

UsedAgainstYou

Celibacy

And let’s not leave out the married women.

MenAndBabies

Don’t ferget…Daylight Savings Time starts this weekend.

StonehengeDST

Cyas.

Posted in Critters, Homebody, Nature | Leave a comment

We’re Moved Into Our House

We’ve been working our butts off the past week or so moving stuff…it is amazing how much stuff you can actually have inside your RV. Between waiting at the house for deliveries and making 2 or 3 trips back and forth with bins of stuff in Li’l Red…and then unpacking said bins and putting stuff away…we’re tuckered out but we do have everything we need to move in over to the house and put away. There is still a bit of stuff we need to haul over…and then we need to finish cleaning for our sale but we’re officially living in the house now.

Stuff is pretty much just stuck someplace in the kitchen because Neil really can’t organize it until we get back from VA with the stuff from our storage unit. The master bedroom and closet are pretty much done…we bought some in-closet drawers and shelves from the custom closet people at Home Depot and at this point we are waiting to see if we need anything additional for clothes storage. The living room area is pretty much done until we get the storage unit stuff, the office is likewise waiting on storage unit stuff although we do have our new computer desk and iMac desktop to serve as our new file server up and running.

The spare bedroom…well, that’s just a warehouse currently but once we get back from VA we need to get some bookcases and then put all of that stuff away.

We’ve signed up for pest control services and all our utilities are done…we’re so happy we have a 2nd fridge and deep freeze in the garage to alleviate space issues…we had both of those back in our sticks and bricks in Fairfax back before we started full timing and they make life so much easier.

We’ve another concert up in Sarasota tomorrow…nothing really spectacular on the program but you pays your money for season tickets and takes your chances…sometimes it’s music that’s either new to you or something you don’t care for. On the other hand…we drove up to just outside of Orlando last Sunday for a performance of the Saint Saëns #3 Organ Symphony…it was the symphonic debut of their new organ which has 5,000+ pipes and is newly built and installed in the Basilica of the National Shrine of Mary, Queen of the Universe…longest church name ever I believe. The concert was by the University of Central Florida orchestra…they were the best college orchestra we’ve ever heard and better than some of the professional ones we’ve heard. The concert was pretty spectacular…opening with a couple of von Weber pieces including his Concert for Bassoon and closing with the symphony after the intermission.  The only drawback was that the organ needs…in our opinion…a little fine tuning of the pipes to get a little more of the high notes coming through. Nonetheless…a pretty outstanding performance…and now that we’re not in the RV any longer we’ll be able to schedule more trips to hear one of our favorite pieces.

Neil grabbed a few shots of the wildlife in our pond…none of them are spectacular as he was taking them through the lanai screening and didn’t have the tripod from the car to assist with camera shake as they were just after dawn and the light was still pretty dim. He’ll try harder and get some better ones…but we wanted to share these anyway.

Ya know…Connie has always wondered why Neil has such a superior attitude and today she found out why…he is descended from royalty. Yes…turns out that he is directly descended from Charlemagne…yeah, the famous King of the Franks, King of Italy, and Holy Roman Emperor. Turns out that His Excellence is Neil’s 33rd great grandfather…so at least we know why he’s so demanding and thinks he should be emperor. He asked her to figure out if he was descended from the legitimate or bastard side of Charlemange’s progeny but she ain’t done that yet. After all…in the years of 700-800AD…most men, especially royalty…had many wenches on the side and the pill had not been invented yet. She thought his 5th or 6th great who was the translator for the original treaty with the Ojibway Indians back in the day was a big deal…but hey…Charlemange…know what I mean.

A couple of shots of Ragnar when he was out in the pond instead of across the other side on the bank.

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Great Blue Heron…about 15 minutes after sunrise.

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Cattle Egret…again just after sunrise.

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Interesting things found on the net.

RoughWeek

This was taken last year on 5/22/19 by a climber on Everest and it shows the traffic jam getting up to the summit…the summit itself is just about the size of 2 or 3 ping pong tables so not too many can get up there at one time…and this is the only way up and down so there is a lot of waiting around and shuffling around the line to get back down after reaching the summit. All of this is up in what’s known as the death zone on the mountain where supplemental oxygen tanks are required for all but the most foolhardy and best physical capabilities climbers…not to mention it’s 30 or 40 degrees below zero standing around and if you slip it’s along slide before you go off the cliff to your death.

Nah…not on our bucket list.

20190522EverestTrafficJam

Formulas

Twins

GovernmentAndGuns

MeAndEveryCampfireEver

NeedGlassesForNews

And finally…

NigerianManDies

Cyas.

Posted in Homebody, RV, Travel | Leave a comment

Rig For Sale

Connie and I have completed…well, almost completed…our move out of the rig and into our new sticks and bricks home in North Fort Myers Florida so our 2012 New Horizons Majestic 39 foot fifth wheel and RAM 5500HD tow vehicle with Classy Chassis hauler bed are for sale. We’ve greatly enjoyed the lifestyle…but it is now time to move on to whatever comes next…likely some international travel for a month or so at a time.

If you’re looking to get into the full-time lifestyle…or are already there and are looking to upgrade your experience…New Horizons makes the best custom rig on the market for the full-time lifestyle. They don’t come up on the used market very often but the build quality and features makes them very attractive compared to other used rigs.

I’ve posted a page here on the blog at
Majestic
 with details, pricing, photos, and contact information. Please pass this along to any of your friends or neighbors looking for a top quality rig…unless you grab it for yourself first. I’ve put a teaser photo below but there are many more along with full details at that link.

Thanks.

IMG 8654

Posted in RV, Travel | Leave a comment

Just When You Think Politicians Couldn’t Get Any Stupider…

…but that would be an oxymoron because…sure they can because let’s be honest with ourselves…they’re politicians and you can tell they are lying if you see their lips moving.

First up on the hit parade this week…the Iowa caucuses to determine the state’s delegates to the respective Democrat and Republican presidential nominating conventions.

On the Republican side…the President was unopposed except for a couple of fringe candidates…and they used the tried and true method of after the second round of caucusing the precinct captains recorded the votes on paper and called them in to state party officials…and the President won. None of that was surprising.

On the Democratic side however…things went awry. First up…back in 2019 the state party officials decided to build themselves an app for a phone to send in the votes electronically. There was paper involved at the precinct level but the primary way to report results was this app that was specially written for the caucuses. Let’s count the ways that things went wrong with this app.

  • The app was written by a company named Shadow Inc…a bare boned coding operation owned and operated by the folks that ran Ms. Clinton’s IT back during the 2016 election…ya know, those brilliant programmers. According to the company bio page…some of them had actual IT experience and a bit more of them worked on her campaign but at least one was a teacher and another worked recently at Starbucks. The company’s founders and backers are directly linked to a progressive non profit named Acronym. Nothing wrong with any of that on the surface until you see the other things they did wrong.
  • The app was still being coded Sunday…the day before the caucuses.
  • No security audit was done on the code…and it was written for the Android operating system which has known software bugs and security holes.
  • No full functionality testing was accomplished…you know…something on the order of “get all precinct captains to try and report a full set of test results in the same hour”…in order to see if the back end of the system actually worked.
  • Numerous precinct captains were not a able to download the app until they were…at the caucus site
  • No training was done for the users
  • No verification was done that the precinct sites actually had…ya know…phone signal which was required for the app to work.

So…when the app failed…the precinct captains tried the backup report via phone method…and where then left on hold for 2+ hours before they gave up, hung up, and went home.

As of this moment…Friday after the caucuses…full results are still not available.

Not to be outdone though in stupidity though…there are some Republicans claiming that the “failure” was actual a “rigging of the results” by the Democratic National Committee…but then they clearly want Mr. Biden to win as his changes of winning the November election are likely better than the far left candidates who will get little support from the majority of the country’s citizens who are in the political range of center right through center left. Since…by the partial tallies so far released…he came in 4th place…this alleged rigging didn’t work very well.

Nonetheless…Mr. Biden’s campaign is being touted by the media as “dead and buried” or “on life support”…despite the fact that he was never expected to win either Iowa or next week’s New Hampshire votes…but is heavily featured in the following week’s primary in South Carolina.

Also…the death of the Iowa caucus process is already being also touted by the media. Now I have no idea of how the process works…but I’m guessing that the caucus can’t be replaced by a primary (which the state would pay for) without some sort of legislation in the state. I’m also not sure that the date could even be changed without approval of the state. Sure…the DNC would get a vote on it but whether they get the only vote is too far down in the weeds of things I care about to make a guess.

Moving along chronically…Tuesday night was the State of the Union address by the President. Naturally…the Republican side claims it was the greatest speech in the history of SOTU speeches…and the other side claims it was a “reality show speech” or “campaign address”. Setting all that aside though…because that happens every year where the non presidential party says it sucked and the other side says it was great…there were several examples of stupidity involved.

  • On arrival at the dais…Ms. Pelosi offered her hand to the President to shake which he ignored. Not really surprising as he’s really not a politician and clearly doesn’t like her but he didn’t shake hands with the VP who sat next to her either so maybe he just thought it unnecessary.
  • Ms. Pelosi ignored the traditional “I have the high honor and privilege of introducing to you the President of the United States” greeting. I’m surprised that a smart politician like her…even though I don’t like her politics she is usually a pretty good politician…did something like that.
  • When the President talked about prescription drug prices…numerous Democrats started chanting HR3…which is a bill for free prescription drugs sponsored by the late congressman from Baltimore. Not surprising…anymore than the Republican yelling “you lie” during one of the previous SOTU addresses. However…at least one congressman sitting in the speaker’s box was involved which put the disrespect on national television
  • The father of one of the Parkland shooting victims jumped up and protested when the President talked about the 2nd amendment…granted he was not a congressman but he was invited by one.
  • Ms. Pelosi ripped up her copy of the speech before the president left the dais afterwards…again on national television.
  • Numerous Democratic women wore white to the speech in silent demand that the ERA…which was recently ratified by the reburied 38th state and they are furious that it is not part of the constitution now…despite the fact that two different deadlines for passage passed 30 years ago and the Supreme Court has ruled that the ERA is dead unless the proponents start over.
  • Awarding the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Rush Limbaugh…this is usually reserved for persons of more impact on the country and not given as a political sop to one of your supporters. It is the Presidential Medal of Freedom though…so the President was within his rights to do so…but it was not a smart political move…but then as I said the President is most definitely not a politician.

What are these people thinking? One would expect that at least some of them would demonstrate some political savvy and not do or say stupid things.

Moving along to the final political event of the week…the conclusion of the Senate trial of the President’s impeachment articles…but these comments are about the process…not the actual articles…although the actual charges do deserve a few words. Let it be known that (a) we are not real fans of the President ‘round these parts, (b) but he did win despite the fact that he says and does things that are not politically smart or even always correct/true, and (c) the Democrats have never accepted the outcome of the 2016 election but as the previous President famously said…”Elections have Consequences.” While we think his actions were dumb and not a good political idea…they were not illegal. The Constitution does say that he can be impeached for “bribery, treason, or other high crimes and misdemeanors”. While later political writings by the founding fathers did offer reasonable assurances that they intended it to be a political process and that an actual crime may (or may not, depending on who, which writing, and how you interpret what they actually wrote) or may not be required. However…the actual words in the Constitution…which in our view are the only ones that count…and also in our view the Constitution says what it says and not what you want it to say…they seem to indicate to me that an alleged crime is actually required and in most previous federal impeachments not to mention both Presidential ones…an actual crime was alleged in the articles. Nonetheless…the comments below are more about the process and political stupidity involved and not the actual articles.

Essentially the charges come down to the President wanting the Ukraine to investigate Hunter Biden and his father the former VP and current presidential candidate in return for military aid. The previous administration refused to provide them military aid…and even went so far as to demand the firing of one of their prosecutors that…according to the previous administration…was corrupt and refused to investigate corruption in the Ukraine. The view that the prosecutor was corrupt is substantially correct…but the nuance is a bit finer than that and I’ll admit that I’ve not investigated it fully myself…but the fact remains that the previous administration successfully bullied a foreign country to do something the administration wanted. In the end…what the President did was largely equivalent to that…he tried to influence a foreign country to do something he wanted…just like Presidents have been doing ever since we because a world power since at least the first world war. And…according to the law as Neil understands it and he used to be in that business…the aid was released before the end of the fiscal year which is the legal requirement…so the administration did not break the law as the GAO claimed. However…what the it comes down to is that the President tried to pressure a foreign country. The fact that the pressure also might benefit him politically…well, despite the claims of the Democrats and media…isn’t actually against the law. In fact…neither of the articles of impeachment charged him with anything actually illegal…distinctly different from the previous two presidential impeachments.

So…what is impeachment anyway? You have to remember that under the Constitution it is not a legal process…it is a political process…and that view by the founding fathers was further explained in numerous writings by them outside of the Constitution back in the 1700s.

So…under this political process…the House conducted what one can only describe as a hasty impeachment…because he needed to be removed from office immediately before he rigged the 2020 election. Never mind that House and Democratic leaders have been saying they would impeach him since the day after the election in 2016 and have never accepted the fact that he won. Never mind that a year ago Ms. Pelosi said that an impeachment was doomed to failure unless there was…bipartisan support for it. Never mind that the House didn’t bother issuing subpoenas for witnesses they wanted to hear from…and never mind that it was a pretty one sided process in the House. Remember…it is a political process and the House majority is Democratic. 

Once the “we have to impeach him now” process was concluded…the vital speed that was “urgently needed” came to a complete halt as Ms. Pelosi sat on the articles for a month before sending them to the Senate. Supposedly this delay gave her”leverage” over Mr. McConnell to force him to ensure that the Senate would hold a “fair trial”…and the only definition of fair trial the Democrats were willing to accept was to allow the House managers to call witnesses but not the defense team. The Republicans who control the Senate…and remember this is a political process…determined to use the same trial rules that were approved 100-0 before the Clinton impeachment and determine the need for witnesses after the presentation of the case by the prosecution and defense teams.

Naturally…and obviously…her leverage was zero and the trial was conducted as a political trial by the Senate just as the indictment was politically conducted in the House. Democrats raged frequently the past 3 weeks about how the Republicans were putting party over country by voting in block…even though the Democrats in both the House and Senate likewise voted in a block…but at least according to the Democratic leadership that was principled resistance and recognizing that the overwhelming evidence and proven guilt was the reason for their votes.

Speaking of overwhelming evidence and proven guilt…the demand for new witnesses was rejected…it is a political process after all. The chief witness…Mr. Bolton…who the Democrats wanted to call was going to prove that the President pressured the Ukrainians…but then he already admitted that in the transcript so no new evidence there. Mr. Bolton was going to quote from the new book he is flogging…which is incidentally been classified by the White House and the March publication date is in doubt to prove this point. No new evidence other than “I said it in my book” was to be presented…and let us not forget that until a month ago the Democratic Party thought that Mr. Bolton was the devil incarnate.

Just in case you have any doubt that this whole impeachment thing was a political process…here are a few statements that were made in the past month or two

  • We need new witnesses.
  • We do not need new witnesses…we have 28,000 pages of evidence and have the transcripts of 20+ witnesses who testified to the House to review.
  • It is the House’s job to indict and investigate…not the Senate’s job. Their job is to evaluate the investigation completed by the House and pass judgement thereon.
  • Each Senator takes an oath to do impartial justice…and unless you vote to convict you’re not impartial.
  • Every Senator has an open mind
  • Every Senator already has his/her mind made up…but those on my side are impartial and convinced by the overwhelming evidence that he is guilty and those on the other side is just partisan
  • Every Senator already has his/her mind made up…but those on my side are impartial and convinced by the overwhelming evidence that he is stupid and foolhardy but it doesn’t rise to the level of impeachment so they voted innocent and those on the other side is just partisan

If you go back and look at the Clinton impeachment then all of these same statements were made by many of the same people who made them these past 2 months. The only things that changed was the party of the President, who had the majority in each house of Congress, and the people who said them. While I did not do an exhaustive level of research on it…Mr. McConnell and Mr. Schumer could have just swapped their speech notes from 20 odd years back because they both contradicted what they said back then.

As I said…a political process…and now it is done. Except that it is not done and the House is going to continue to investigate and is likely (according to Mr. Schiff) to file new impeachment charges “if the President is reelected”.

Ms. Pelosi’s words about a bipartisan impeachment from a year back proved prophetic…if only she had not let her more rabid left wing anti-Trump members railroad her into doing something that was (a) doomed to failure and (b) likely will cost her party in the 2020 election.

Post acquittal…Mr. McConnell had a press conference as did Mr. Schumer. Mr. McConnell called a spade a spade and said it was political, touched on the testimony and evidence that was presented, talked about the 90 times the charges were “proved” or the evidence was “overwhelming”, asked why if that was true then why did the other side demand more witnesses which would indefinitely delay the matter, stated that Mr. Schumer had admitted that the primary reason was to stall things in the Senate as long as possible for political gain. Mr. Schumer sounded like an even more so than usual Grumpy Bernie Sanders and whined about the overwhelming proof and proved…again…while deriding the Republicans for voting as a block while defending his side voting as a block. 

Dumb…and their other brother dumber…and mebbe their twin dumbest as well.

Interesting things found on the net.

OldWolf

MemoryFoamInsoles

I’m not trying to downplay the latest coronavirus…which is actually just the flu but a family of viruses that has spikes around the edge that look like a crown so the family is named coronavirus. Anyway…it is just a version of the flu…and while it is fatal in some cases…the overall death rate is (depending on which article you believe) either half of the normal seasonal flu death rate or up to about 1.7 times that rate…but it is only in the low single digits. Caution is needed…but the hype in the media is just that…hype…and the overly aggressive quarantines are probably not really needed.

TheDutchAreVeryAfraid

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LockedOutAgain

Cyas.

Posted in Homebody, Reality Based Blogging | Leave a comment

Long Time No Type I Guess

Actually…I know since our last post was on 1/18 just after we closed…and I gotta tellya…this movin’ out stuff is hard. We been pretty much running ourselves ragged getting furniture, deliveries, internet and cable, and schlepping stuff from the rig over to the house. We’ve hardly had a day off since we closed and there’s still a lot to go.

The good news though…is that we’ve made significant progress on getting the new digs setup. We have received our new Sony 65 inch OLED TV and sound bar and gotten it configured and setup with cable. We’ve got our internet connectivity active…we sprung for the gigabit ethernet and I gotta tellya again…after the limited speed and monthly bandwidth we have dealt with in the rig…speed of 1 gigabit (Neil got 900 MB when he measured it so it’s not quite gig speeds) and a monthly bandwidth limit of 1 terabyte is really nice to have. He downloaded the latest macOS version over the the other day and the 5.8 GB download took about 3 minutes instead of the 25-30 it would have taken in the rig on our MiFi connection. 

Our bedroom is completely setup…we ordered some built in cabinets for one side of the walk in closet in there and are still thinking on whether we might need a dresser in addition to those. Our recliners are due to be delivered this week hopefully and once we get those we will have enough over at the house to move in and sleep there instead of in the rig. Still need our TV stand but it’s coming the end of this month and it can just sit on the floor where the stand will eventually be in the meantime. Our garage second fridge and chest freezer will also be in late this month.

The spare bedroom will need a bed and furniture but we’ll handle that later once we get moved The office computer desk and chair are in and assembled, our new desktop computer to serve as the home file server is on order, and we’ve got a trip to Midlothian to get the stuff out of our storage unit the first week of March.

We’ve tentatively scheduled the Big Move© to start on Presidents Day weekend Feb 15 and since we have that whole week pretty much unscheduled on our calendar it should be enough…although realistically we expect to be done by about Tuesday.

We’ve discovered a lot of wildlife in the pond behind our house…should be able to get nice pictures once we get moved in. So far, we’ve found the obligatory gator like pretty much every water hole in southern Florida has, turtles, various herons and other wading birds, and an osprey.

This is Ragnar…he (or maybe she, you can’t see any reproductive organs and it’s not legal to wander around to that side of the pond to look anyway…and bull and female gators look the same externally.

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This is our dining room set…we went with the glass top and rattan-style chairs as being much more Florida like than the heavier stuff you would have up north.

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And naturally…we got matching counter height chairs to go at our bar where we’ll eat most of the time unless we’re in the recliners.

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Our new bed…a soft sided waterbed. It’s not quite as comfy as the old hard side one with just a mattress cover over the bladder but with the pillow top, soft sides, and about 1/4 of the water of the old hard side style it is the second nicest place we’ve ever slept…better than our Sleep Number air mattress and way better than a standard spring and foam mattress. The nightstands and headboard are from the same set in the local furniture store and the lamps look like Royal Palms…again very Florida looking…we got 3 of them at Bed Bath and Beyond…two for the bedroom and the third for the chair between our new Lazy Boy recliners.

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This rattan bench will go behind the table between the recliners and sorta behind and in between the recliners. We had one like this in our house in Fairfax and it is the best option we’ve ever had for storing laptops and iPads.

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A better image of Ragnar…he/she is about a 6 or 7 footer I reckon.

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Tom…our neighbor two doors down and the self declared “Mayor of Long Pond” since he was the first one living on the street…gave us this patio furniture. Still in great shape and that’s 500 bucks we don’t need to spend right away.

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We saw this bamboo sailboat art in the Lazy Boy store and all agreed that we needed to have it.

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Let’s see…what else is new?

Father Tom who has been the pastor at our local St. Therese parish ever since we started going there retired this past weekend so we went to a dinner honoring him at the Herons Glen country club (the next housing development north of Magnolia Landing) last week. His replacement Father Jan arrived this week and I guess we’ll meet him next Sunday.

We went to Sarasota for an orchestra concert yesterday and have another one on Thursday…we didn’t like one of the concerts in the Masterworks series we get season tickets for so utilized their ticket swap process to get evening tickets to a Beethoven Eroica Symphony #3 this week. We normally go on Sunday afternoons so we don’t get home so late…by the time we get out of the concert hall parking and drive back to Seminole it will be midnight. We did that the first two years we were season ticket holders but switched to Sunday afternoons as just a better idea all ‘round.

We have tickets to the Valentines Day soiree on the 8th…it’s a week before the holiday but I’m not responsible for the scheduling.

OK, on to interesting stuff found on the net.

ClassyPeopleWine

This mathematical formula is correct.

FormulaIsCorrect

Definitely not PC…but funny nonetheless.

YouAreHomeEarly

GinAndTonicDiet

WifeOfTheYear

SmallBoobs

CleavageIsLikeTheSun

And a few more winter related ones for those readers who are stuck up in the cold northlands…which by Neil’s definition is (a) anyplace where there is ever non liquid water falling from the sky and/or (b) anyplace where the low overnight temperature starts with a number lower than 5.

CatWhoDidThis

GiveMeMyArms

CoalDigger

SnowJob

HotFlash

OfCourseTheyreFake

Cyas.

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And We Are Homeowners Again

Actually…we were homeowners already…it was just that our home had wheels underneath it and a really big back yard consisting of North America…but that’s another discussion. What I’m talking about is that as of yesterday we are the owners of a normal house…what RVers call a sticks and bricks or S&B…we closed on our home in the Magnolia Landing development in North Fort Myers. The good news is that it is a really nice house in a gated community and St. Therese where we attend Mass is just across US-41 maybe a half mile from home. The…well not bad but not as good I guess is the best way to put it…is that it isn’t any closer to the Elks or Legion than we used to be…although both are pretty much a straight shot down US-41 from Magnolia Landing and driving wise it is a little quicker and with less traffic to deal with.

I am sitting here in the living room in my zero gravity recliner…the house is not furnished yet with the exception of our waterbed headboard which arrived today. The waterbed itself shows up tomorrow and Neil and Connie will be heading off this afternoon after her Ladies of Elks meeting to see about rectifying that little problem.

Our current plans are to start moving stuff from the rig over to the house and coordinate that with furniture deliveries and cable/internet installation and we’ll probably shift sleeping and main occupancy to the house sometime in mid to late February…we still need to run up to Richmond to pick up the stuff in our storage unit and the will happen in early March we think.

We also need to get with the spa company to get ours installed…get new grills…get a freezer and second fridge for the garage and various other moving in stuff…along with some new computer toys of course and the 65 inch OLED TV we picked out.

Here’s what it looks like currently…

Front view with Li’l Red in the drive. The house is concrete block with stucco over it in construction and has a tile roof for maximum hurricane protection.

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After entering the front door the office and second bedroom are off to the left in a separate wing and the main living area is straight ahead. This was taken from the right front corner of the dining room area looking across to the lanai door. The living room is on the right and the entertainment center will be on the wall in front of where the recliners are currently sitting with the master door between where Neil was standing for this shot and the TV which you would be looking at the right side in profile if (a) it was there yet and (b) if he had turned slightly to his right. Inside is drywall with stone tile in the living area and carpet in the bedrooms.

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Turned to his left to get the kitchen…Neil is going to love cooking in here. The only problem is that because the house has 10 foot ceilings the cabinets are pretty hard to reach the top shelves…so we’ll just keep infrequently used stuff up there. The white door is the pantry.

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This is the front bedroom in the left side wing…we’ll use it for our office. The third bedroom is immediately to the right of this one with the second bath in-between them.

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Looking out from the corner of our lanai…the grills will be on the wall to the right and the spa in one of the two outside corners.

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The view out to our pond from the lanai…going to be a great place to have coffee in the mornings and watch the sun come up.

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I’ll post some more shots as we get stuff delivered…I’m posting this on Saturday and we got our new soft side waterbed installed yesterday…looking forward to sleeping in it as it is far and away the most comfortable bed we’ve ever had. The Sleep Number is way better than a normal mattress but still is lacking compared to a waterbed. The nice thing is that waterbed tech has improved considerably since 1976 when we bought ours…no more hard side and just a sheet and mattress pad over the water bladder. Now they have soft side ones that sit on a metal frame above the floor like a standard bed and a pillow top covering over the water bladders…yup, two separate water bladders, heaters, and thermostats so Connie can keep hers at sauna like temperatures while Neil goes for a bit below body temperature. We still need to attach our headboard…the “standard” bracket they delivered doesn’t fit our headboard but we talked to the dealer today and he’s got extender plates for the brackets that will solve the problem. He’s up in Port Charlotte about 30 miles north of the house…but we’re headed off to Sarasota tomorrow for a symphony concert anyway and he’s open on Sunday afternoons so we’ll stop in on the way north and pick them. Neil had a plan to solve the problem but it sounds like bracket extenders will solve the problem more easily.

So far…we’ve bot the bed delivered. Thursday we get nightstands, dining table and chairs, counter height stools for our eat-at bar, and a table to go between our recliners. The TV stand won’t get delivered until mid February so we’ll also order our new 65 inch OLED TV in time to support that delivery as well as our cable and internet hookup…which will be significantly cheaper than what we’re paying in the RV. In the rig we are paying 160 a month for DirecTV and another 65 for our Verizon MiFi internet device…our Premium channel package and gigabit internet will run us just 110 a month.

We also ordered our new recliners…and can anybody tell me why the leather ones are so much more comfortable to sit in than the fabric covered ones? I’m not talking about the smoothness of the leather vs the texture of the fabric…but the chairs themselves outside of the covering are just so much more comfy in the leather ones. We found one that had motors in it to raise the footrest, recline the back, elevate the head rest, and also for the lumbar support area…Connie says it is the most comfortable chair she ever sat in. We decided that the motors were just more stuff to break and they were $2500 apiece anyway. We ended up with standard LazyBoy recliners, rocker style with manual raise and lowering of the footrest upholstered in burgundy leather…less than half the price of the super duper one. They’ll get delivered next month as will the TV stand as I mentioned above. With all of those in place…we’ll have enough furniture to live in the house so will probably move our base of operations over to the house in late February or early March.

Our new neighborhood is going to be nice…we’ve already met Tom the self declared Mayor of Long Pond Road who lives 2 doors down (he was the first owner on the road so he appointed himself)…quite a character as is Lennie who we met walking his poodle-something mixes, two females who clearly didn’t like each other. Connie has already decided we’re going to get our door modified with the leaded glass insert…there is a company in town that makes them for $1200 and then they come out, cut the door and insert the glass panel…she saw Tom’s and said “I want one”.

We spent most of Friday afternoon sitting out on the lanai waiting on the waterbed assembler to arrive…we can see that we’ll be spending a lot of time out there in the future.

I would give you an eagle update…but the baby E14 died this week of unknown causes. The folks from CROW, the local animal rescue/rehabilitation organization came and picked up the carcass with their bucket truck and will be doing a necropsy (which is just like an autopsy except on animals instead of a human) to figure out why. While the other egg never hatched, I don’t think anybody has a guess on why that happened but E14 seemed pretty healthy and was eating well but it obviously had something wrong with it.

Interesting stuff found on the net.

MarinesArrangeMeeting

Good idea.

PotholesAssholes

It turns out that 99 squared is a number that has some neat properties…or at least its reciprocal does. Take at look…and for single digit numbers like 0 through 9 just consider them as 2 digit numbers 00 through 09.

99SquaredReciprocal

MoppingRain

Prostate exam

NoBrains

Cyas.

 

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