Bettie Page Fanboy and Other Things

Hope you guys all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We had a pretty low key one but that was alright with us. No need to get all stressed out and all that. We kept it pretty intimate between just the two of us and, of course, Carson. The main fixings we all had prepared for us but we did make the LadyDoc’s signature green bean casserole and she also made an baked apple crisp of which I did most of the preparation of ingredients. I think we actually work well together in the kitchen and I even find it a little enjoyable I also finally put the outside grill into storage for the winter marking the end of our outdoor BBQ season..

The Christmas tree, or holiday tree, if you prefer that phrase, was finally put up. We quickly added the lights, decorations, and everything else. By now, we are experts at it. This year, to give it a more classy look, we chose to use only white lights, and also the fact that the usual lights we use seemed to have shit the bed. Why can’t they make any of those that can last? Of course, we also retrieved Peng, a large penguin, from storage that we like to think Carson makes friends with.

If you’re wondering about the photo in today’s entry, here’s the quick story behind it. I found this shirt in my closet recently which must have been hanging there for years featuring one of my favorite models of all time, the legendary Bettie Page. I always liked Bettie Page. Nearly 60 years after her modeling heyday—which made her the most-photographed model of the 20th century—Bettie Page continues to fascinate fans worldwide. The so-called Queen of Pinups tied with Einstein at No. 8 on Forbes’ 2013 list of top-earning dead celebrities, and Time named her one of the 100 most influential people on fashion; her impact is so enduring that Madonna, Beyoncé, and Katy Perry borrow style cues from her (they’ve all donned the U-shaped “Bettie bangs”). It’s interesting to note that her fan base is not just men as it was originally. Such an iconic look. she had a pretty interesting life too, and in many ways, a little tragic. There’s no denying her style or signature look. LD thinks this picture of me looks a little trashy, but I don’t know, I personally thought it was actually a pretty good picture of me. What do you guys think?


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A Bettie Page fanboy

I finally downloaded the Libby app to my phone so I could take out books from the library right from my smartphone now that I signed up for a library card after having a defunct one for years. Not sure how much I will like reading off the small screen. The app itself is pretty cool though. very well thought out and intuitive. I didn’t mind the Kindle I had but I do find something satisfying about having an actual book in my hands to read, Anyways whenever you want a book you usually have to put a hold in for it and then when it gets freed up you can read it for a limited time. I currently have two holds on a couple of books I think I want to read. Empire of Pain about the Sackler dynasty and their peddling of their products which led to the opiate epidemic. The other tome I’m interested in reading is Caste, about the unspoken caste system in America. Looks like that one I’ll be reading first.

Watched a show on Netflix last night called Stutz about Jonah Hill and his therapist. It was actually pretty good, Check it out if you think you might be interested in something like that. I also watched a thing on King Tut on PBS, a two episode presentation about his allies and enemies in honor of his tomb being discovered 100 years ago this month, Everyone loves the boy king. Besides him and the pyramids that’s probably how most people get interested in this sort of thing. For me, it was the pyramids and the enormous structures and intricate artwork. And of course the mystery of it all.

I know this entry is kind of all over the place but that’s the way I roll sometimes. And remember! Mark Bethoney Photography to check out some of my artwork for sale. Might make a good gift for you or someone you care about that digs things New England and likes to look at pretty pictures.

Simple Tasks, and Remembering Old Somerville Peeps

I finally got around to and finished a number of things around here that I’ve been meaning to do. After my shifts, there were a number of small duties that required my attention. We probably won’t be sitting outside on the patio under the umbrella for the remainder of the year, so I finally put the patio umbrella in storage. Maybe a firepit outing, but I don’t see us seated by the table. Three bags of oak leaves that I had been planning to bag eventually got filled. I reasoned that now was a good time to complete that because it was sunny and not too cold outside today. I brought in the sage plant, I think I might want to try to keep that one going over the winter, Most of the other plants that are still out there are pretty much done for the season. Sad. I also threw a bunch of the pumpkins that had been being eaten by the squirrels out onto the lawn for them and to decompose naturally.

I switched the propane tanks putting the almost empty on into the grill and the mostly full one into the outdoor patio heater. It might come in handy on a fire pit night, if we decide to have one, with or without guests. I may store the grill tomorrow but I decided to hold off a bit on that task for now. I also relocated the power washer from the shed to a warmer location to store it for the winter. First and foremost, because doing so was instructed, but also so that there would be more room in the shed for additional storage of items.

The accomplishment I’m most proud of is that I finally finished hanging the curtain string lights that LD had purchased quite a while back. To create a cozy atmosphere, I hung them up in the sunroom near the big glass doors. These are replacement lights that dangle across and down for a really attractive look. We had similar lights there for a year or two before they ultimately died. The wonderful thing about this specific model is that it has 8 various settings, so you could do wave, or slow glow, or strobe, etc. I believe she purchased these from Target months ago. I would never use some of the settings but I like either the solid or the wave and slow glow settings. I’ll see which one LD likes the best and go with that one.

I’m almost done reading the book I bought a few weeks ago about the reign of Akhenaton and Nefertiti. I think I’ll be giving it four out of five stars, it’s a pretty good read, especially if you’re at all interested in the 18th dynasty, The duo definitely made a lasting impression! We’re still talking about him today! The first monotheist, Tut’s father, a heretic to many, and what’s up with those hips? The portrayals of Akhenaten himself greatly differ from the depictions of other pharaohs. Traditionally, the portrayal of pharaohs—and the Egyptian ruling class—was idealized, and they were shown in “stereotypically ‘beautiful’ fashion” as youthful and athletic. However, Akhenaten’s portrayals are unconventional and “unflattering” with a sagging stomach; broad hips; thin legs; thick thighs; large, “almost feminine breasts;” a thin, “exaggeratedly long face;” and thick lips. Could be just symbolic though, he did radically change the traditional art style from thousands of years times past. Fascinating individual. Still, wouldn’t it be funny is they could come back and tell all these scholars, “Uhmm, You guys are way off! it wasn’t like that at all!”


Ok, I got a fairly humorous story to relate. It’s from back in the days when I worked at a pizza place. It was an interesting time in my life, I’ll need to try to remember and perhaps share some more of my experiences from that time, just being a 20 year old kid still learning about himself and his place in the world. Anyways there was a store next to the place where I was working at the time. Sort of like a 7-11 but smaller. It’s a place called Q’s Nuts now, but I digress. Anyways, back in the day, there was this woman that used to work there behind the counter. Her name was Cindy. She had pretty eyes and looked a little bit like Lynda Carter, but not as great really. Everyone almost always commented on that. A few houses down from the store lived this guy. I think he might have been from Portugal or something. Married, a few kids, yadda yadda yadda. Well, Cindy was being a bad girl because she had the hots for this gentleman. She would physically leave the store and stand out on the corner of the sidewalk looking for this guy. She used to think he looked like Elvis Presley. Now, I’ve seen this guy, and I can tell you this, he ain’t No Elvis Presley! It was like she was crazy about this dude! So, she’d be out on the corner, slowly turning her hips from left to right (I think she was trying to impress anybody driving by by showing her butt. Very peculiar now that I think back on it), spinning on her red high heels (which quite frankly didn’t look that good on her.) And that’s all she would do. Left-to-right. Left-to-right. S-L-O-W-L-Y turning on the corner. You could go into the store and just pig out or whatever and she wouldn’t care. I guess now that I’m reading this story back to myself it isn’t that funny, it’s just another one of those you-had-to-be-there deals I suppose. Oh yeah, she used to have this rank station wagon that ,uhmm, has a few stories to tell. Someone told me that one night, she was in it naked in the back, awaiting Elvis, splayed and all, and then later that evening, well, let’s just say when the station wagon’s a rockin’, don’t come a knockin’ – IN THE GUY’S OWN DRIVEWAY NO LESS! I felt sorry for the wife. However I am more sorry for just the thought of those two doing the horizontal bop – gives me the willies! *Eeep!*

I was reminded of these characters by going back through the old ancient website when I was much more introspective if also a bit immature, not realizing at the time that these people might have had problems so keep that in mind as I relate this next tale. It brought to mind another character. There was this one guy called Artie. Good customer, sort of looked like Art Garfunkel, but every now and then he would come in the store and be all screwed up, like drunk or high or something. He was a child of the 60’s so basically at least half of his brain cells must have been fried. Every night , or almost every night, he would come in and buy a slice of pizza. Maybe that was his dinner or something, I’m not sure, but he had one almost every night. Always just one slice, that’s it. Nothing else, ever. One night he strolls in, all messed up, and buys a slice. Then he starts acting like he’s in ‘Nam or something and get, like, all weird. He runs out of the store onto the middle of Highland Avenue, which is a fairly major street and has quite a bit of traffic at times. He stops in the middle of the street and his slice falls, *plop* right on the center line. He’s so screwed up, he bends down, picks it back up, eats it right there quick as a whip, and almost gets hit by a car. And it’s as though nothing ever happened. I was scared there for a minute because this dude almost really did get hit! But that was Artie for you. I haven’t seen either Artie or Cindy since I left that place. God, it must be over 30 years by now. Wow! I hope they found happiness in life and are doing ok. I don’t think they’d remember me or I them if we saw each other but maybe if I see a woman who looks eerily a bit like Lynda Carter…

A Little Update to Appease the Masses

I grilled up some flat iron steaks the other night. Seasoned with just a bit a salt. LD said they came out great, so that’s what we had last night. Tonight I think I’ll grill us up a bit of turkey burgers. I actually prefer beef burgers but she like the turkey so…

I updated the iPad to iPadOS16. One thing I noticed that I really like is the new weather app. I wonder if there’s something similar for Android? I’ve been running Weawow which I found to be pretty good, but I’m digging the way Apple’s version looks and feels.

Updated the website under the hood, Shouldn’t be any issues hopefully, Let me know if you see anything weird though.(Would any of you really do that?)

I’ve been playing around with some design elements, such as this post with a gradient background and and rounded image that cuts the gradient over to the right. What do you think? It looks best on a big screen like a laptop or tablet, on mobile the picture just goes small and doesn’t look as impressive. Hey, I’m learning new things on my own! And speaking of playing around, I decided to play another Powerball ticket. I mean, come on, how could one not with the stakes so high? When I do play I only play one ticket (and only when the jackpot is super high) – all you need is one.

I ordered a new book to read that just came out. Egypt’s Golden Couple: When Akhenaten and Nefertiti Were Gods on Earth. Yeah, King Tut’s parents and they have quite an interesting story that I’m interested to see what these authors take on them are. So look forward to my review on that.

The plumber came over late this afternoon, I was expecting him at some point although not really today. Anyways, he put in some new line that will go right into the new oven. Speaking of which, the appliances are supposed to get delivered tomorrow morning early, so that’ll be some fun.

A Couple of Rainy Day Activities

Castle Hill Light, Newport, RI

Going through some of my archives and I came across this picture I took of the Castle Hill Lighthouse in Newport, RI that I thought was pretty cool so I thought I’d post it up and see what folks think of it.

Heading over to the supermarket this morning I noticed some chips that I had seen mentioned on the Phantom Gourmet the other day in my channel surfing. They are Lays chips but with flavors taken from other snacks, such as Lays chips with cool ranch Doritos flavor, and one with Cheetos. I picked up those two. They also have Funyuns and Fritos flavors but I didn’t see those. These are supposedly only available for a limited time. I’ve thus far tried the Doritos flavored and it’s pretty good, especially if you like cool ranch flavor.

Like I mentioned in the previous post I started reading a book about the two kids really (at the time) who created Doom and basically started the first player shooter sensation. It’s a pretty amazing read and I highly recommend it. It came out in 2003 so it’s not pricey. Having lived through and experienced many of the same things at the time growing up that these kids did made me really soak up this book. Brought back memories in the 80s of buying computer magazines at the time that had program code in it’s pages that you’d have to type in in order to play the games. And of course, I’d always make a typo somewhere so it wouldn’t work and I’d have to painstakingly try to find where it was, and the code was always a confusing mess of letters and numbers. Anyone remember that? I had totally forgotten all about doing that back in the day!

Birthday Shenanigans in a Treehouse

Nubble!

Too many things to say about my birthday getaway right now. But the highlights were hanging in an Airbnb in Dover NH that had an actual treehouse overlooking the scenic Piscataqua River, watching baby robins being fed by their mother in another tree in the back yard, getting clean in the shower that had two showerheads almost opposite each other which was really cool, grabbing burgers at the BRGR Bar in downtown Portsmouth, getting some shots over at the Nubble, hanging out and swimming at Long Sands beach, eating clams at Bob’s, and getting a gravity chair that I wanted and a book about Rumi that I also wanted to read! It was really hot outside but it is Leo Season as they say! Naturally I must thank LD for making my birthday amazing and every day, as always!

I’ll need to expand upon this at a later date, but all in all, totally amazing!

Hiking the Coastal Trail to a Scene of Beautiful Paradise

What did we do this morning? After a quick dip in the pool, we went over and hiked the Eddy Trail, probably one of our favorite locations to hike of all time. As an added treat they had the story of The Lorax all laid out along the trail, a page or two every so often along the way. The finale (well, really the half way point since you have to walk back) is ending up upon the cliff face. It just so happened to be high tide, so we got to see various boats floating along the flats. We even got to see a baby bunny along the trail. Of course it was scared but very cute as we said hello and went on our way.

Currently Reading: From a little library in Chatham by the lighthouse: Hell’s Half-Acre: The Untold Story of the Benders, a Serial Killer Family on the American Frontier. I think I might have heard bits of this story before but not really sure. You can look it up on Wikipedia, talk about a strange family.

In case you missed it, I decided to add my shot Where Time Has No Meaning to the shop as well. A nice relaxing Cape scene I think I captured pretty well.

Reading List

Currently Want to Reads

I mentioned that I’ve been looking for some books to read so I went through my Goodreads list and thought it might be interesting to see what I’ve been wanting to read lately. Some of these books are pretty new and aren’t out yet, and some are old and just hard to get a hold of. Of course I could buy the books but I prefer to find them in Little Libraries. I prefer non-fiction so you may see a common theme in my selections. I won’t list every single book on my current list, but most of them. So without further ado, let’s get to the current list and if you have read any of these or have more suggestions, let me know!

How to Speak Whale: A Voyage into the Future of Animal Communication – I always had a fascination with whales and have read a bunch of books about them. Leviathan was one of the better ones. They are pretty much the only reason I wanted to visit Nantucket a few years ago, which reminds me that I need to get back there one of these days.

Reading allows us to see and understand the world through the eyes of others.

– Chris Riddell

Split Decision: Life Stories – A book by Ice-T! We all love him as Finn on SVU and he has a pretty good and controversial music career as well. Anyways this book looks interesting to me as it details his life but also parallels it with one of his friends growing up and how they ended up in different places and that he could have ended up there too if certain decisions were made.

Are All Lives Equal?: Why Cost-Benefit Analysis Values Rich Lives More and How Philosophy Can Fix It – I’m not totally sure why I added this one? It just seems somewhat fascinating that someone somewhere can decide mathematically what they think a person is worth?

Rogues: True Stories of Grifters, Killers, Rebels and Crooks – Well, I watch a lot of crime documentaries and this book looked interesting in that vein to me.

Blood Orange Night: My Journey to the Edge of Madness – A do love a good memoir now and again, and this one seems to deal with a woman and her addiction to benzodiazepine.

For everyone, a book is a search and hopefully a discovery.

– Shelby Foote

Been There, Done That: A Rousing History of Sex – “Explorations into age-old questions and bizarre trivia around birth control, aphrodisiacs, STIs, courtship rituals, and more establish that, when it comes to carnal pleasures and procreation, there’s never been a normal, and sex isn’t something to be scared of.” That was enough of a teaser to get me interested in reading this.

Unmasked: My Life Solving America’s Cold Case – As I mentioned before, crime docs are all the rage and cold cases seem to really grab us. A lot of work goes into solving things like this and I think this book describes that.

The Gift of Rumi: Experiencing the Wisdom of the Sufi Master – I love the quotes I’ve seen from this guy. Someone who is so eloquent with words like that is someone that I can learn from. So I think it would be interesting to see who this person actually was and how he saw life around him.

Birds and Us: A 12,000 Year History, from Cave Art to Conservation – Along with whales, which I’ve liked for a long time, I also grew to like birds, although I got into birding a lot more recently. It all started with noticing different backyard birds and there’s something thrilling about noticing a bird you haven’t seen before, at least that’s how I feel.

Silent Invasion: The Untold Story of the Trump Administration, Covid-19, and Preventing the Next Pandemic Before It’s Too Late – I was more interested in reading this when it first came out. It’s kind of dimmed on me now but it still might be a good read just to see what a clown show that was going on.

Funny Farm: My Unexpected Life with 600 Rescue Animals – We’re going to somehow visit this place in Jersey someday. LD and I like to visit the rescue animals at the farm and this book details some of what it takes to run places like that. It’s a lot of work and a labor of love, I am sure.

Cults: Inside the World’s Most Notorious Groups and Understanding the People Who Joined Them – Cults I find fascinating. Like, what makes people just join them and get blinded by whatever it is? Vulnerability I suppose could be one reason. A need to belong? The book also looks closely at the lives of some of the most disreputable cult figures and tell the stories of their rise to power and fall from grace, sanity, and decency. Sounds like it’s up my alley.

One of the best things about reading is that you’ll always have something to think about when you’re not reading.

– James Patterson

Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty – They are one of the richest families in the world, known for their lavish donations to the arts and sciences. The source of the family fortune was vague, however, until it emerged that the Sacklers were responsible for making and marketing OxyContin, a blockbuster painkiller that was a catalyst for the opioid crisis. I’m interested in learning that story.

The Memory Thief: The Secrets Behind How We Remember—A Medical Mystery – Memory is such a fickle thing. Hell, I know that from my own recall of memory.

Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents – a fascinating subject that I think would benefit me to learn more about.

And Party Every Day: The Inside Story of Casablanca Records – A bet there’s a lot of crazy stories in this book, from a record company that housed the likes of KISS, Donna Summer and George Clinton, to name a few. A banquet of hedonism and self-indulgence that sounds like a good read.

Well, that’s my list so far. I hope to get to read some or all of these over the next few months. Once again, let me know what you think about my list and if anything on it interested you.

Visiting King Tut: The Immersive Experience

Finally got a chance to check out the Immersive King Tut Experience over at the South Boston Sowa Power Station. It was interesting, definitely focused more on the religious afterlife beliefs that the ancient Egyptians had, after you learn a little about the Boy King’s life you watch him go on his journey through the Afterlife. We went with another couple friends of ours. Afterwards we hit a famous Quincy restaurant with has great views of the Bay and had lunch there on the deck. It was a beautiful day!

Currently reading: For One More Day by Mitch Albom. A little library find from a visit to some of them a few days ago. In a bit, I’ll list a series of books both new and old that I’d like to get a chance to read over the summer and maybe why I’d want to read it.

Playing with Old Laptops, Bunny Crossings and Harvard Square Losing All It’s Character

Bunny X-ing!

I was so impressed with the experience of converting that old Windows 8 laptop over to Chrome OS Flex that I decided to do it to my old laptop that crapped out on me. My intention was to just have another machine around for backup and it would never replace my new Windows machine, but I like to tinker around. Anyways, it wouldn’t install which leads me to believe that the disk drive in there is really crapping out. For fun I may decide to see if I can replace it if I can get my hands on some really cheap hardware, but probably not. Anyways, it’s good to know that I really did need a new laptop, and I have the Windows 8 machine that I converted to Chromebook the other day, and that one is working like a charm. I even used it today to print some things and help LD out with some work she was doing.

Before I took on that task however we took a trip over to pick up some groceries and decided to check out a new Little Library that was on the way. I ended up getting a new book to read that was there – Johnathan Living Seagull: A Story printed in the early 70s. Looks like an easy read and I needed something new to read and occupy me. Apparently all my jabbering was getting LD annoyed as she was trying to read her books. Sheesh!

Anyways on the way to the location, LD noticed this very cool traffic sign of a Bunny Crossing. Probably not a real traffic sign, but cute and apropos nonetheless.

We grilled some salmon outside on a cedar plank this evening. It wasn’t that hot for me to do it and I didn’t mind. There actually was a rather nice breeze blowing as the sun started to go down. It went good with some fruit salad, both items obtained from the earlier grocery run.

I learned that Harvard Square’s “pit” was being destroyed. Like the Garage, which I discussed a week or so ago, here is yet another piece of Harvard history that is vanishing into oblivion. I can tell you some tales about the pit, but perhaps I’ll save them for another time. Although I used to frequent Harvard Square frequently in the 1980s and 1990s, I now only go there rarely, if at all. Although the original character of the square has essentially vanished or is in the midst of doing so, change seems unavoidable, and so it’s kind of a bummer to see those iconic places go away.

Plant Day

We started out the morning getting some plants from the get together the town garden club puts on once a year. Got some really good specimens this time too, including a gorgeous hanging pot of flowers and vines in the same pot, really spectacular looking. I’ll definitely need to take a picture of it once it’s set up. Just a bit too windy right now. While at the shindig we got to see some of the members that we know, so that was cool, but it was windy and cold as heck. Not May like weather at all, although it’ll be in the 80s by Friday. In fact, it was so windy today that the outdoor heater tipped over and bent the top reflector panel a little bit, which bummed me out a little because I pride myself on keeping those things like new. I have since secured it better so the wind won’t do that again. I believe I can bend it back into shape, it’s just a small bend.

Then we headed to the office to get some mail. While there I hit a local little library and got a new book to read, pertinent to what’s been going on in the news these days, as a coincidence. The Story of Jane: The Legendary Underground Feminist Abortion Service will be my next read. I can remember an old Cold Case tv show episode that delved into this a bit. Then we visited Volante again for some more “special” phlox that has some really cool patterns that we’d never seen before and are using to enhance the landscape around the driveway. Finally we went to Home Depot for some mulch but they were out of the kind that we wanted, so we’ll have to wait a little for that. Maybe go to Lowes and see if they have any of it later on. We also need to start trans planting the flowers currently growing in the hydroponic garden as they’re starting to get too large for it and I want to start a new batch of plants there. Might also be time for the lavender seedlings on the windowsill to get transplanted as well.

Industrious for a Sunday

Before Noon:

Today I’m feeling quite accomplished! I finished assembling the hose box we got yesterday before noon (I didn’t realize it needed to be partially assembled, but I figured it out). Instead of laying strewn around all over the place, the hose is now neatly wrapped and placed inside a fashionable looking box. I trimmed and disposed of some weeds that had been growing under the patio. I dumped the ash from the firepit that had accumulated over the course of the previous couple of social outings. I took down the outside lights from the back deck so that I could power wash it clean later and trash any lights that were no longer functional. I’ll rehang the working lights once everything is done to that section. Finally I air blew some leaf detritus off the decks and patio for a cleaner look. Like I said, feeling pretty accomplished! I also learned how Square works a little bit!

Afternoon:

We went out to Home Depot to pick up a pressure washer, which we’ll use to clean the decks early to mid-week. Then it was over to Staples to get a three-hole punch so we could punch holes in all the recipe cards we’d gathered and placed into a binder. Also started putting away some of the winter things that were outside live the shovels and the reflective poles in the ground.

Evening:

Winding down with some television and to begin reading an old book that was laying around, You Just Don’t Understand: Woman and Men in Conversation. Looks a little outdated but still could be interesting and enlightening. I’ll give it a shot.

A Love Affair to Remember

Stairway to Heaven

I awoke early again to head on down and catch the sunrise as the morning looked to be much clearer than it was yesterday and with a lot less wind. I grabbed a few shots on my cell, the geese and ducks just sitting atop the water gliding by. Walking along the shore there were a couple of wooden stairways, access points for the owners of the properties that lie along the shore. They’re private and you’re not supposed to use them but no one was around and I was respectful and only climbed a couple of them and took a few sunrise shots, one of which is above, which Boston Fox 25 news station shared on their own Insta feed this morning, so thanks guys for that! I’ve included some of the shots on my Insta stories so you can see them there if interested for next 15 hours or so.

Sitting there on the stairs awaiting for the sun to rise really made me think about how fortunate I’ve been in life, and lucky to have finally found a love that is everlasting. Every new day just reinforces it all more and more although with the hectic schedules of life we sometimes neglect to appreciate it. It takes me moments like these to quietly reflect on things, how I arrived here, and just take it all in. I found a quote that pretty much summed it all up and how I was feeling. “The morning bids me to linger a moment before the sun proclaims the day as having arrived. And it is this silent space hewn from a day not yet on its feet that tenderly and at times abruptly positions me to better face the arriving day. And I am utterly amazed that there has never been a single day in the whole of my life where the day showed up without this gift. Rather, it’s that I have too often shown up too hurried to accept the gift.” This trip was a little getaway to celebrate LD (it’s going to be a year of celebrating!) and she needed some getaway time to reset and recharge. I hope she was able to do that with me. We both have a love affair with the ocean and eachother and to be appreciative to be near both whenever we can.

After cleaning and packing up we went to the Sparrow for some last minute things, spent a few minutes on Nauset Beach and watched the waves crash for a while and then headed to Sandwich for lunch right by the Cape Cod Canal before heading back home to Carson. The rest of the day was just hanging out on the sofa and giving that boy all the attention he wanted. He even napped with us. I believe he was truly happy to have us back.

Currently Reading: Two Old Women: An Alaskan Legend of Betrayal, Courage and Survival. I found this book in a little library down in Orleans while we were dropping off some old book of our own and this one looked intriguing to me and also a pretty easy read.

The Fix

Today’s watch was How to Fix a Drug Scandal on Netflix, which describes the Massachusetts State Drug Lab Scandal that happened a few years ago. I knew of the story but not the total scope. Pretty interesting. And I’m off to my next book read, Dopamine Nation: Finding Balance in the Age of Indulgence.

Thanks for the Repost!

You may notice that I’ve moved this site over to a https URL instead of the less secure http that I’ve been using. So you may need to update your bookmarks but probably not. I’m not collecting any information from visitors, not doing e-commerce or anything like that, it’s just a prudent thing to do.

I just heard my New Years Eve skating photo from a few days ago was featured on NECN. Pretty cool. For some reason they don’t seem to be notifying anymore, just showing on tv. I wouldn’t have known about it but a woman I used to work with back in my AutoCAD drafting days saw it and commented the news to me.

I just picked up and finished reading Fauci: Expect the Unexpected. Easy read. That’s my first book on 2022. Hopefully I’ll be able to do more reading this year. I was horrified to learn that according to my Goodreads I had only read 5 books in 2021. Is that right? My average is around 25-30 books a year.

Pics on Acorn Street or It Didn’t Happen

Acorn Street in November

Yes friends, it’s that time of year again. The time when we dig out the tree and begin decorating things. Our tree went up fairly quickly this year and, I think, came out rather well. I also set up the lighted wreath on the door and set the timers for the various lighted things. We also went looking for a bookcase but ended up coming home with a large terra cotta cute-looking penguin, which LD has named Peng. Carson already had his picture taken with it and may end up on this year’s holiday card. I still need to set up the outdoor reindeers and such but I’m going to wait until later in the week when the temperatures are supposed to be better.

I picked up a new book from a little library we passed on the way back from where we found Peng called Automating Inequality. I’ve heard about this thing before where computer algorithms basically make decisions and tend to penalize certain populations. I’ll give it a go and see how it is.

Blue Mouthwash

Moonstone beach again.

Had a dentist appointment yesterday morning early so the night before I kept waking up so as not to miss waking up on time, if you know what I mean. Everything checks out fine but he did prescribe me this mouthwash to use for my gums. While I was waiting at the pharmacy to pick it up their computers went down and I had to wait even longer for that to get back up before I could get my prescription. All in all I’d say that whole process took about an hour, something that usually only takes 10 minutes.

Later in the afternoon I took my mom’s cat Hardy to the vet to get his nails trimmed. He was pretty good this time, got into the cage easily and was quiet the whole time, whereas he usually cries a bunch.

I started back around 3 o’clock and I can tell you that traffic is back to it’s awful pre-pandemic self.

We finally got around to setting up some more streaming services on the new tv. Prime video and HBO/Max are ready to go. It is nice to have so many options. This should increase our movie and series watches for entertainment.

I grilled up some burgers before nightfall. It was getting a little windy and it looked like it might rain, but it never did. Annoyingly the wind would ever so often blow out the burners so I had to relight it a few times. I hate when that happens. I did notice while I was waiting that one of those day lilies from the garden lady bloomed and nearby were Shiloh the baby bunny and what I think may be it’s mother Gracie. Nice to see them around.

Currently Reading: Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family

A Little History

Carson
Oh, Hello Carson!

I see that according to my records, this website is going to be 20 years old in November. Now mind you, that’s just this website with this URL. I started blogging a few years earlier, first on Geocities in 1998 (!), and then through my ISP at the time. I can remember I would have to code the HTML and then upload it through FTP, and then check it. If there was a mistake or an update I’d have to re-edit the HTML, re upload the file through FTP and check it again. It made archiving a real pain. Nowadays it’s all automated and I can just focus on the content. I wish I could find the Geocities HTML. It was so terrible but I was teaching myself how to make web pages. I think it does exist on an old Zip Disk somewhere (remember those?) but even if I could find it, I’ve no way to read it. The old ISP one can be found on the Internet Archive WayBack Machine in bits and pieces.

Over the rainy long weekend we went over to LD’s old landlady for a little inside BBQ, we picked up the air fryer (haven’t tried it out yet though), we got through just about everything we had ever DVR’d including finally finishing every season of 21 Jump Street, went to the Sanctuary to drop off some carrots and apples for the animals, and did a shitload of meal prep. I also finally got around to setting up the SmartTV but when I turned it on the screen was all cracked. Going to have to figure out a way to return that since it’s been a while, plus after seeing this one I think I want to get a better and slightly bigger one.

Everything in the garden appears to be doing well, and today I noticed the lupines are starting to blossom. I see LD also obtained some more blub plants from the gardening club lady today while I was over at Earth-1. We’ll put those in tomorrow. I also ordered some Simple Green grill cleaner because I want to do a deep clean soon on the outdoor grill and a 512GB microSD card for my phone to store all the wonderful cell photos I plan on taking with this new device.

A few weeks back in Marshfield by the beach I happened upon a Little Library which had a book written by Anderson Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt. That’s now next on my reading list.

The Loss of Rango

Rango

We left late morning into the town of Wellesley because LD had to pick up some things. While there we perused the local bookstore and I got a new book to read, The Gardner Heist. It’s been back in the news lately because there’s a new documentary on it out but I’ve been looking for something to read and this sounds up my alley. I was surprised to discover that I actually haven’t read a book since December. My Goodreads reading statistics for this year are woefully behind.


After that we decided to go the sanctuary to drop off some food for the animals. It’s something we like to do every now and again and LD loves to pet the goats. The place has been closed for most of the winter and spring but the owner seems to like us and lets us have somewhat of a VIP status for which we are eternally grateful. We were saddened to learn however that Rango, a Nubian goat with very soulful eyes had passed away from a heart attack just last week and so sudden. What makes it even sadder is that Rango was one of LD’s favorites, if not her favorite, goat there of all time.. We did learn that some of the other goats did get to say their goodbyes though. We saw pictures of Rango wrapped in a shroud and some of the goats would pass by or sit with it for a while, to pay their respects, just like in a human wake. They just know things we think they don’t, but they do. We could probably learn a lot from them if we only took the time to listen. We did get to brush the goats that still remain there. It’s been a tough several months for the sanctuary.

It sucks not to be able to have said goodbye to Rango, and LD and I and everyone at the sanctuary is pretty devastated by the news. But as Queen Elizabeth said, “Grief is the price we pay for love.” And we cannot and will not stop loving. Fully, deeply, and courageously. Rest in peace Rango. You will be missed.


When we came home I decided to mow the lawn out front. The rains the other day was really making the blades get long so I chopped them down.

Wednesday Vibes On

Rockport Motif No.1

Tried Wendy’s $5 Biggie Bag for lunch yesterday. It wasn’t bad. I would get it again. LD also set me up for a vac appointment for this coming Saturday but it was for the J&J and soon after booking they announced a halt on those. I would prefer to get an mRNA vaccine anyway, preferably Pfizer but Moderna as a second choice. Even though the chance of a problem with the J&J would be most likely rare for me, I’m not going to get that one. If they don’t switch it out I’ll just cancel and try to find another opportunity. LD did find me another appointment for Pfizer but its up in Amesbury, I’ll probably just do that.

Fun little article on Little Libraries in the latest edition of the Somerville Times. I’ve been to a few of these in the past. I need to go revisit them, since I haven’t really read anything since the end of last year. Jonesin’ a little bit for something good to get into.

Today was the first day of the year that I mowed the front lawn! Might have a guest or two over the weekend outside so it would be good to make it look nice and neat. Took a little longer than usual because I had to charge up the edger, but it’s done so we should be good to go!

The site is being upgraded to PHP 7.4 on 4/21 so hopefully everything will still work. It should, but we all know how computers can be, Keep your fingers crossed!

A Cold Day for Old Things

Gooseberry Island (click for larger version – it’s worth it)

Looking through some older photos I took this year and played around with this one from the time we visited Gooseberry a couple of months ago. Sometime in the future I would like to just spend the day there exploring all the terrain and rocky shoreline. Maybe next spring.

General consensus is that this particular 8mm bulb I’m looking for does still exist, but the vendors I found that carry it want a hundred bucks for it. Not sure if I’d be willing to spend that much for such a little bulb, but then I think to myself, can I put a price on watching the memories? I know there’s places that will convert the old film to transfer to CDs and other media and whatnot, but like some old codger I’ve come to actually like to putter with these old technologies. I mean, all the songs in our jukebox times ten can all fit on a tiny microchip, but there’s just something about the couple hundred pounds of mechanical behemoth that appeals to me.

I feel it was really too cold to do much of anything today dealing with the outside. I’ve started reading a book on the iPad that LD got through the library so that’s my current read: Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man by Mary Trump. Nice family and childhood, no wonder the guy’s whacked. Also would someone please tell him the train has already left the station. Pul-eeeze!

Visiting Zen on Gooseberry Island

Zen on Gooseberry Island

What a long but beautiful day. After spending much of of it at a friend’s house (for some reason whenever we hang we mean it to only be a hour or two but somehow it turned into 5 or 6! – time flies apparently, it’s nice to be able to hang and get some social time) we headed out to a place in Westport called Gooseberry Island. I took of bunch of photos of which the above is one. There were many rocks stacked up on each other which I believe symbolizes some kind of Zen thing. (yes!) I wouldn’t mind spending more time at the place at another time – I found it to be quite scenic. We even saw a couple of young deer on a beach trail there just in front of us watching and frolicking around – maybe I’ll post that picture tomorrow or so.

Currently reading (from a Little Library in the area): American Catch: The Fight for our Local Seafood. Written about 6 years ago, looked interesting so I figured I’d give it a shot.

Tonight I prepared and cooked up some creamy lemon butter chicken with parmesan zucchini rounds and scallion couscous. It’s actually pretty easy dish I find to create.

Heart Shaped Rock is now available if anyone is interested.

Egret Duo and Little Library

Two Egrets

Here’s a picture of two egrets from the other day. I took a lot of shots but here’s one for now.

Here I am visiting a little library on the Lexington/Lincoln line. We happened to be in the area this afternoon to visit an acquaintance for a quick socially distant get together and decided to check this out on the way back. What’s neat about this one is the cat is supposedly animated when you open and close the doors. It didn’t happen for me but maybe it needs to be dark out or something. Anyways, this place was cool because it looked like they also had this killer tree house and erecting another building on the property to match the current house. You have to see it in person to really appreciate it.

Love to Whaleback Light

Sailing off to Whaleback Light

Off to go renew my driver’s license today. I believe I have all the documents required to get my Real ID. I could’ve waited but I figure, eh, why not just get it out of the way. I’m a AAA member so I’m going to a AAA branch to get it done, way way better then waiting at the RMV. This time around you had to make an appointment and the wait is 2 weeks out or so. Well, my time is now arriving so here goes! I’ll let you know how I did when I get back and the whole process and stuff.

I’ve been closely following the Tufts reopening plan developments in my hometown, the campus itself is not far from my family’s home. Lots of residents in the area have serious concerns about their plans on how they would contain the students and their possible behaviors. Personally I don’t see how it’ll last more than a couple weeks maximum before changes happen, if it even gets that far. We’ll see.

Update! I’m back from the AAA but I didn’t get a chance to renew. I had everything but the bills I decided to bring with my info were not within 60 days. It would have been nice to know that ahead of time! It’s my own fault I suppose, when I got all my docs together I just chose the ones I had on hand at the time. So, basically I have to make another appointment. No big deal. I already made an appointment online – you have to keep clicking to try to get in and get a time but I just got one. Two more weeks and I get to this all over again – hopefully next time everything will be in order! What a pain in the ass.

In my down time I’ve taken to re-reading a book I purchased ten or so years ago entitles The Pyramids: The Mystery, Culture, and Science of Egypt’s Great Monuments, I forgot how good this book actually is! The author describes not just the big 3 pyramids, but all of them, along with their significance in religion, science and culture of the time they were built. Really fascinating stuff, but I’m into that. I’ve chosen to reread it mostly because I’m out of new stuff to read at the moment.

The story behind the photo: You may see this picture up top of sailing to Whaleback Light on NECN. I’m honored that they choose to highlight so many of my shots! Well, anything to get the word out helps I suppose! This particular shot was actually taken by me from land zoomed in. I saw this sailboat in the water and in the distance Whaleback Light so I tried to juxtapose the two and this is what I came up with. I also lightened it up considerably from the original snap. I find I prefer ship or boat scenes surrounded by white – just a preference of mine. I wished that the boat would have its blue sails unfurled as that would have looked great, but it was just not to be. Also, I love lighthouses and learning about their history and their keepers and Whaleback Light has a great one.