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Saturday, July 24, 2004


OK, so I just learnt about Hello from G-Had. Finally, a decent way to put pictures on a blog. I read absolutely NO instructions, and was able to upload a picture within 30 seconds of starting the install for Hello. Of course, I'm pretty good at instictive software use, but still I like that kind of stuff.

At some point, I'll figure out how to put images from Hello into the sidebar, etc. But that might require reading instructions..

Thanks G-Had..


just testing Hello...

Thursday, July 22, 2004


K.  Brace yerselves.  Prepare to have your shivers timbered.  Or vice versa. 

I haven't blogged for a good spell now, so this could get wordy.  Also, I'm drinking a moderately large martini.  I have this thing where if there is some food or drink item that other people like alot, and I don't like it, I eat/drink it until I begin to enjoy it.  I was this way with red wine.  Didn't care a bit for it the first time I had it, but I kept at it, and now I like it a good deal.  Same with whiskey/whisky.  Same with martinis. Same with grapefruit.  And onions. 

I do my martinis Hemingway-style.  He called the martinis he made 'Montgomerys.'  Because you use a 15:1 gin to vermouth ratio.  He said that was the ratio of British tanks to German tanks Montgomery required before he would attack.  Hemingway ruled.  I know doodley-squat about warfare, except that it's unnatural.  So that's the recipe I use for martinis.  Approximately.  That is what is known as a dry martini.  Nobody sensible would use vodka and citrus peels, and call that a martini.  (maybe that will be my next forced assimilation - wrong word, but I forget the right one).

My gin preference is Bombay Sapphire.  But that is expensive.  So, based on a recommendation by William Least Heat-Moon in River Horse, I use Barton's.  A good workingman's gin.  I doubt if that slogan has ever been used to sell gin.

William Least Heat-Moon is one guy I think I'll probably meet at some point in my lifetime.  I don't know why I say that.  It's as arbitrary as, say, liking Indiana. 

Someone sent me a link with a parody of This Land is Your Land by Woody Guthrie, but with cartoon likenesses of John Kerry and that other guy.   The guy that lives in the White House now.  Singing about the election.  And stuff.  Those of you that know me well probably know that This Land is Your Land is my all-time favorite song.  It may surprise some, since I sometimes poo-poo on folk music.  My second favorite song of all-time is Love in Vain by Robert Johnson.  It's so haunting..I don't know about my third favorite song.  Possibly it's God Only Knows by The Beach Boys.  That one is in the top 10 for sure.  I'm too lazy to do the mental gymnastics required to list my top 10, all-time favorite songs.  It would certainly include Inuit Promise by Hum, and one other Hum song, probably Apollo, but it would depend on my mood.  And Wilco/Billy Bragg's version of Remember the Mountain Bed - words by Woody Guthrie.  There would be an Eels song in there.  Maybe Uncle Tupelo.  I doubt if I could get away from at least one Nirvana song. 

Like I said, I'm too lazy to come up with a true top 10 list.

Just back from 4 or 5 days (I forget which) up in the mountains, doing field work.  Almost done.  A few times ago, we had just finished coring trees at a site, and were sitting in the truck eating lunch, when a U.S. Forest Circus employee pulled up.  Here is pretty much what happened:

Ranger Rick: What are you doing!?
Me: Eating lunch.
Ranger Rick: What are you doing!?
Me: Eating lunch.
Ranger Rick: What are you doing up here!?
Me: We're working on my thesis research.
Ranger Rick: Doing what!?!
Me: (explain stuff about grass and trees, then get to the part about coring trees..)
Ranger Rick: Coring trees!!!?!?
Me: Yup.
Ranger Rick: Did you get the OK from the office to core trees?
Ranger Rick: What are you doing with the cores?!?
Me: Keeping them, so we can count them.
Ranger Rick: What are you doing with the holes?!?  Are you sealing them?!?
Me: Nothing.  The latest work says it's better not to seal them.
Ranger Rick: Shove a stick in there!  Bugs get in!
Me (aside, to Jen): I'll show you where you can shove your stick..

It was bizarre.  That dude was mad at us when he pulled up.  We were on a public road, which went through public land.  We were in a place with lots of logging going on.

For some reason, it made me think of the beginning of every episode of Scooby Doo.  You know, how they're on their way to visit Daphne's uncle, or whatever, for a nice vacation, and it turns out that Daphne's uncle has been taken prisoner by two old scallywags, who have him tied up in the basement.  And the bad guys are all...."those nosy kids...they'll ruin EVERYTHING!"  And then they dress up as monsters and stuff to try to scare them off.  So it was like, the Forest Service guy was all sneakily selling off all kinds of timber, and then two nosy scientists show up and start poking their noses where they oughtn't be.  That's how my brain works.  That's dumb.  I wish my brain could do something useful.  Like adding and subtracting fractions.  Or remembering numbers for more than 3 seconds.  I'm pretty good with names, I never forget a face, and I can recall lyrics to songs I haven't heard for 10 years, but tell me a number to remember, and I turn in to Mememto Man.  My wife, on the other hand, is like Rain Man with numbers.  If I want to know what page Braised Sesame Pork Tenderloin is on in Joy of Cooking, all I have to do is ask her.  And she's never cooked it.  Or even seen the recipe.

I like the word 'scallywags.'

I am offficially old.  Since I started my field work, I have added to my list of camping equipment:

-folding camp chairs with fold-out side table AND beer holder AND detachable 6-pack cooler bag thing
-a solar shower

OK.  That's not much stuff, I guess, but it's enough to make the point.  Oh, and my hair seems to be falling out.   But maybe that's just the Eucalyptus-based bug spray.  That stuff burns my throat and makes me not hungry.  I doubt if it's really much safer than DEET, which I'm pretty sure is just DDT, with a new acronym.

My garden rocks.  You know.  For a garden in Laramie.  We will actually have bountiful tomatoes this year, barring a mid-August killing frost.  The turnips are kicking arse, beets are standing tall, pole beans climbing high, etc. 

The 9/11 report.  I like the part where it recommends sub-offices on stuff like WMD, drugs, the Middle East, and then...Russia!  Uuhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.  We already beat them.  They have enough problems.  Let's just leave them alone, K?

I can't even make fun of any news items, since I haven't read the news for so long.

I'm sure some dumb stuff happened, and some dumb people said dumb stuff about it. 

Still reading Zen..  During the first part of the field season, we were all lazy, only working like 8 hours a day. So I had plenty of time to read.  But then we realized we'd never finish in time at the rate we were going.  So now we pretty much work morning til evening, and I'm too tired, or too busy swatting mosquitoes for 6 hours, to read.

I like the book.  I'm annoyed that I've had this hiatus in reading it.  I think you should read books all at once, if possible, or at least in big chunks.  That said, I seldom have time for that.

MMMMMM....Chicken and Rice and Urine.....

I'd trade my good looks for the ability to play stringed instruments like Doc Watson any old day.

My dad: "I wish I was born rich instead of so darned good-looking!"


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