Thursday, October 27, 2016


Spreading God's Love: ARE YOU IN DESPERATION?

Found on Facebook

I thought this was interesting:

Did you know????
Some Clinton connection I just discovered. 
So Chelsea is married to George SOROS nephew. 
Also, about 6 months before the Iran deal went through, John Kerry's daughter married an Iranian Muslim; meaning his daughter is now in Islam and their grandchildren will be Islamic. 
Hillary's three top aides are Muslims and two are connected to the Muslim brotherhood. 
Are we getting the picture yet and what will happen unless Trump is elected?
The Clinton - Mezvinksy - Soros Connection
Edward Mezvinsky was born January 17, 1937.
Then you'll probably say, "Who is Ed Mezvinsky?" Well, he is a former Democrat congressman who represented Iowa's 1st congressional district in the United States House of Representatives for two terms, from 1973 to 1977. He sat on the House Judiciary Committee that decided the fate of Richard Nixon.
He was outspoken saying that Nixon was a crook and a disgrace to politics and the nation and should be impeached.
He and the Clintons were friends and very politically intertwined for many years.
Ed Mezvinsky had an affair with NBC News reporter Marjorie Sue Margolies and later married her after his wife divorced him.
In 1993, Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky, then a freshman Democrat in Congress, cast the deciding vote that got President Bill Clinton's controversial tax package through the House of Representatives.
In March 2001, Mezvinsky was indicted and later pleaded guilty to 31 of 69 counts of bank fraud, mail fraud, and wire fraud. Ed Mezvinsky embezzled more than $10 million dollars from people via both a Ponzi scheme and the notorious Nigerian e-mail scams. He was found guilty and sentenced to 80 months in federal prison. After serving less than five years in federal prison, he was released in April 2008 and remains on federal probation.
To this day, he still owes $9.4 million in restitution to his victims.
About now you are saying, "So what!"
Well, this is Marc and Chelsea Mezvinsky.
That's right; Ed Mezvinsky is Chelsea Clinton's father-in law. Clintons staying at Soros Family home during Chelsea’s wedding Now Marc and Chelsea are in their early thirties and purchased a 10.5 million dollar NYC apartment (after being married in George Soros' mansion).
Has anyone heard mention of any of this in any of the media? {And now you have a brief insight into how the Committee's billionaire elite control the politics and direction of nations - Ed.}
If this guy was Jenna or Barbara Bush's, or better yet, Sarah Palin's daughter's father-in- law, the news would be an everyday headline and every detail would be reported over and over. And yet liberals say there are no double standards in political reporting. 

94 Years Ago Today

Click image to enlarge. granddad, at Parkersburg, West Virginia (his home) sent this card to my grandma, visiting at Pennsboro, WV. This is NOT the Blennerhassett Mansion of folklore, but a farmhouse that was built on the island at some point.

Just Sayin'!

I fully understand that no-one, male or female, wants to be thought of SOLELY as someone for sex. And yet I have to wonder about people like Megyn Kelly saying that women are NOT sex objects. If she really believes that, why does she go to such effort to make herself physically attractive? Wouldn't it be better to forego the make-up and dress like Chairman Mao?

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Crystal's New Book (a link)


18th Century Home Weaving Looms (a link to pics)

A Woodsrunner's Diary: 18th Century Home Weaving Looms.

Worth Fighting For (a link)

Kentucky Hollers: Worth Fighting For

A Not-Quite Wasted Wednesday

I didn’t sleep well the first part of the night, so when I took the dog out at 3:30, I stayed up an hour-and-a-half on the computer so as to get a little sleepier. Not surprisingly, when I woke up at 7:30, I didn’t feel much like getting dressed and heading to the chiropractor as I’d planned. So, the NEXT time that I woke up, it was 10am.

I then went downstairs and got back on the computer, while the missus fixed a VERY early lunch (brunch?). She wanted to rest a while and watch a couple shows before she headed to the chiropractor with me (just for the ride) so I didn’t get there until 2pm. The doc gave me a full twist and shout, so I was there a bit longer than I expected. We then stopped at the greasy arches restaurant and got a 50 cent ice cream cone apiece for us and the Mighty Dachshund, who was in the back seat. The missus then wanted to take the long way home, via the small town up the river. During all this, my water pill, which I’d taken late, was working all too well. In the two hours that we were gone, I had to drain three times, plus upon leaving and returning home.

I’d originally hoped to put the wheels on my chainsaw mill frame, which is stored on the bench below the house, and pull it up here to finish it. I knew that would involve getting my battery drill and bits located, along with a jig to help me drill straight holes, so the 5/8ths bolt axles would be set right. So, I just aired up the tires and called that project good enough for the day.

The small end of a small wild cherry treetop that has been hanging below the edge of our yard for 4-5 years recently deteriorated enough that it broke and hit the ground. So, I rounded up three chains and connected them to the treetop and gingerly gave it a pull with the truck. I knew that it was still somewhat attached, but it broke and pulled up the grade easily up to my wood rack, where I’ll try to cut it up tomorrow or the next day. I’d thought the treetop was dead, and that the leaves around it belonged to the tree next door. I was surprised to see that not only were the leaves attached to the treetop, but that MOST of the treetop was still alive.

By the time I got the chain all disconnected, the missus was calling from the door that our leftovers from lunch were warm, so I called it a day. Oh well, I didn’t get much done today, but at least there was a little progress. They’re calling for rain tomorrow, so I don’t know if I’ll be outside or sorting things in the basement but I’ll try to do SOMETHING at least. © 2016

105 Years Ago Today

Click image to enlarge. granddad, at West Union, West Virginia, sent this to my grandma at Parkersburg, WV.

107 Years Ago Tuesday

Click image to enlarge. grandmother at Parkersburg, West Virginia, married only a few months, was sent this card by her brother, Albert, working with my granddad at Griffethsville, WV.

108 Years Ago Monday

Click image to enlarge. grandfather at Griffithsville, West Virginia, was sent this card by his sister, Gussie, at Parkersburg, WV.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The Bully Party (a link)


I Knew America Was Lost When

…Bill Clinton was elected the second time. I understood that he was a likable sort, at least from a distance, but his TOTAL lack of morals was clearly evident by the time that he ran again for president. Still, the majority of voters seemed not to care. I knew that the country could easily survive four more years of his quasi-leadership, but I also knew that it could NOT survive an electorate that had lost all moral discretion. Later, I liked “Little Bush” better than his dad, but I was no a great admirer of him.

Then, America once again showed its lack of morals, or at least common sense, by electing an Arab president, when we were basically at war with some Arab countries. That was just as insane as it would have been to elect a Japanese or German president during World War II. Such individuals might have been good men, but our voters had sense enough back then that they would NEVER have taken the chance. Obama pretended to be black, though, so every liberal nutcase in the country voted for him, mainly for that reason, along with those who simply hated all republicans.

Four years later, American voters AGAIN showed a total lack of morals by re-electing that same Arab, despite him having proven that he was grossly immoral, and either unbelievably incompetent, or completely treasonous. Now, the same folks who supported Obama a second time (and would for a third, if they could) are rooting for an obviously and thoroughly communist liar of unimaginably amoral character. Only time will tell if enough folks have come to their senses to slow down our descent into political hell.

One thing about this election is that it’s clearly illuminated the voting blocs in this country. For Hillary, you have mostly hell-bound heathens, and I’m NOT exaggerating. Hillary stands FOR everything that Almighty God stands AGAINST. The day has long passed when you can be a Christian and vote democratic.
The other main bloc is made up of pragmatists; they may love Trump or loathe him, but they fully understand that he is America’s last hope to avoid a quick demise.

The third group is small, but might make a positive difference if they would join the pragmatists, but they won’t. This small group, however, is actually made up of three even smaller groups—those voting for Hillary to spite Trump, those voting third party because they are just too “righteous” to vote for either major candidate, and those poor deluded souls who honestly think a third party has a chance of making a difference in this country at this time. The latter are basically Peter Pan types. The first two, at one time, would have been said to be cutting off their nose to spite their face. They are apparently unaware or uncaring of the fact that they are helping the hell-bound heathens to sell their children into full communist slavery.

Personally, I continue to believe that our country is doomed, just as I did back in 1996, when Billary was re-elected. All that remains to be seen is whether we go into the sewer madly paddling with the current or slow our descent by paddling against it. © 2016

And Now It's Happening HERE!

This was on Facebook:

As a very young man I traveled to England.
I remember very clearly a discussion with a man at breakfast nearly 50 years ago in a cafe at the Carlton Tower Hotel in Sloan Square, SW1... "silk stocking row," the best part of uptown London.
He was an entrepreneur with a big company.
I was close friends with his son, and he'd invited us (my first wife and me) to visit there.
The man had a wonderful residence in that very hotel, plus a magnificent mansion on a huge estate in the country and a spectacular beach house. He drove a Bentley convertible. He lived the life of royalty without any annoying royalty obligations such as waving at throngs of people from the back of a car.
I had no idea whether I'd eventually run my own company, but I looked up to him because I aspired to be like him some day. He was obviously very, very smart and for some reason he seemed to enjoy talking with me. I clung to every word.
He predicted many things that came true, so his vision in 1971 of where Britain and Europe were headed was very accurate.
He was concerned about what he called "creeping Socialism" and the resultant erosion of our freedoms.
He said England would follow Europe into a Socialistic quagmire because the "one person - one vote" democratic system would allow voters to eventually figure out they don't have to personally produce very much to sustain a comfortable life if they can get their government to drastically redistribute wealth and to redefine what their rights are... if they could get the government to declare they have a right to a certain standard of living (whether they produce or not) then their motivation to produce would diminish, and likewise they would largely quit producing and simply vote for whichever leadership promised the greatest benefits.
He predicted the rise and fall of Socialism because it's unsustainable. He likened the economy to a bus traveling along with passengers, driver and engine. The public are the passengers, the driver is the government and the engine is business. He said it would take several generations of beating up the successful, milking businesses and borrowing money to pay for social programs to eventually cause the collapse of the country's economic structure, and like an overcrowded bus, it would eventually fail to proceed. Business people who are demonized, overtaxed and forced to provide more and more ancillary services, vacations, etc., will eventually fail to proceed, one by one, until the "overcrowded bus" has no workable engine. The government can steer all it wants, but with no engine it's not going anywhere. The passengers, who would have had a rather nice ride for a while, would eventually be afoot.
He said our freedoms would be under attack more and more as socialism crept forward... we would be told how to think, how to speak, and that successful people and businesses would be in the direct center of Socialism's cross hairs...
And that the bus would gain a lot more momentum as it rolled downhill, people happily riding along, mindlessly hitting and destroying the very thing that created it... the economic business engine that got it up the hill to begin with...and that it would be headed for disaster in the end.
I guess he was right.
We're a nation standing at that very bus stop.
All aboard?


Snope's Still Lying For Hillary (a link)


Monday, October 24, 2016

You Won't Hear THIS On The News! (a link)


An Almost Profanity-Free Visit To The Veterinarian

I had a less than complimentary post on here a year or two ago about the vet clinic where I’d done business for 46 years at the time. I’ve learned that most vet offices are similar though, so I continue to deal with them, since they are the closet to my home. The pooch was a little late on her distemper and rabies shots and her heartworm meds so, unfortunately, I had to take her there today. I didn’t bother making an appointment because the last I knew, such things weren’t needed just to get a dog’s shots. Times have changed. They now tie an exam to the distemper shot and insist there’s no charge for the exam.

I asked when the first open slot was, and they told me that the little red-headed %$#@*&(+ who was willing to let the Mighty Dachshund die the last time that I was there (for lack of $100 in my wallet)  had a 9:30 open (it was almost 9:30 then). I managed to bite my tongue and not tell them that I’d drive my dog clear to California rather than let him ever touch her again. I DID ask if the doctor was available who I’d dealt with for many years, but he was off. When asked if any other doctors were available, they mentioned that a lady doc who’d we’d had before was available “right now.” I told the girl at the desk that would be great. “Right now” turned out to be 45 minutes later. The whole time, the Mighty Dachshund was a shivering, shaking, leg climbing, whimpering jumble of nerves. She’s not so mighty at the vets; after all, nothing good ever happens to her there.

Interestingly enough, the distemper shot with the “free” exam cost me $47, as opposed to $22 for the rabies shot. Free exam my _$$! THEN, they charged me $4 for a “Biohazard Disposal Fee!” I got a real break on her heartworm meds, though; they would have been about $156 had I bought the six-month supply a month at a time. Lucky me, I got them for ONLY $111.86! My total bill came to $184.86. The $50 that I’d planned to give the tire shop was GONE. So was the few dollars of mad money that I’d saved in case we made it to Amish country this month. And, naturally, so was the $100+ I’d allowed for the vet. I had $10 in ones left in my wallet when I returned home.

Once upon a time, veterinarians would come to the farm for large animals. Now, farmers have to be their own vets, since the “good doctors” prefer to stay in the office where the small animals and the good money are found. And it IS good money anymore. They’ve apparently decided that they should be paid as well as people doctors, and who am I to say they shouldn’t. Most used to go into the profession because they loved animals, though; today’s vets seem to go into it just for the money, like most medical doctors of this era. Understandably, my respect for both has taken a giant nose-dive.

We won’t be having any more pets after this one passes; we can’t afford to properly take care of this little pooch the way it is. I blame that both on the vets and the pet med companies. I wonder what they’ll do if most people begin feeling that way and their business goes to hell in the proverbial hand-basket? Hopefully, we’ll both outlive our pooch; I’d hate to think what would happen to her if we didn’t.

I spent $8 of my $10 this evening buying my own meds. The co-pay went up from $7 last month. That’s only a dollar, but my wife keeps telling me that she’s seeing stuff on TV saying that they’re going to quit paying for meds. I certainly can’t afford them on my own, so if they do that, I guess it will be strictly up to the Lord whether I live or die. Truth be known, it’s actually in His hands as it is, and I’m pretty contented with that idea. © 2016

Stumbling out of the Starting Gate - another installment from a WW II rationing re-enactor

Kentucky Hollers: Progress Report: Stumbling out of the Starting Gate

Sunday, October 23, 2016

A “Sort Of” Visit To Lowe’s

I took the missus to “the other” Chinamart today, to get a few things we forgot or couldn’t find at “ours” yesterday. Since we had the Mighty Dachshund with us, we picked up a plain double cheeseburger from McD’s for me to hand feed her as my wife shopped. After leaving my wife at the far door of Chinamart, I drove to the Lowe’s next door and parked. There, I stood at the open rear door and tore off one little bite at a time for the pooch. After she finished, I gave her a good combing and brushing, and then I put the leash on her and headed for the entry to Lowe’s.

It makes no sense to me, but the handicapped spaces at Lowe’s are beyond both the entry and exit, rather than between them, as would be the best way to actually benefit the handicapped. However, since all those spaces between the doors were filled with “non-handicapped” vehicles, I did end up using one of the outlying handicapped spaces. At least the electric carts were reasonably close the door inside. (No, Grammar-Check, I meant CARTS, not CARS!)

The Mighty Dachshund had never been in the store before, let alone in the basket of a cart, and it was obvious that her courage was waning fast. Finally, I took her out and let her walk, but I had to watch closely, as she just didn’t seem to know how to heel with an electric cart. After a couple minutes, I put her on the cart, between my feet, and she seemed better. She was still a nervous wreck, but she was comforted some by feeling my feet at each end of her little carcass.

My reason for going to Lowe’s was to pick up a couple spare bow saw blades that their website mentioned that they are supposed to carry. When I asked a couple young female employees standing in the front aisle just where I might find the blades, they directed me to their “Tool World” section. Needless to say, the girls didn’t know their backsides from a mole hill. Not only were there no blades for bow saws, there were no “outdoor” type tools of ANY kind—no shovels, no rakes, no axes, no mattocks, no pole saws, no nuthin’. There WERE, of course, multiple electric tools and manual “inside” tools, like hammers, squares, chisels, etc. I knew there had to be another section somewhere that contained such tools, but the Mighty Dachshund was acting far from mighty by that time, so we left. Maybe I can go back another day when she’s not along (or leave her in the ventilated truck now that weather is cooler and not tell the missus).

After THAT little fiasco, we went to a far corner of the lot, and I backed the truck up to the curb next to a grassy area. Then, I put the harness on the pooch along a retractable 25 foot leash, put down the tailgate, had a seat and let her roam and sniff. For about half-an-hour, she wandered around, watched the traffic and the people, barked at those returning to their cars at Bob Evans (until I reminded her that it wasn’t her turf), sniffed incessantly, pooped once and peed thrice. When she finally came and sat down to my left, I knew that she was done, so we went over and checked out their plastic tool sheds, a few feet away. Then, I returned her to the back seat and drove over next to the door where my wife went in and waited until she returned.

Incidentally, I was both shocked and amused at the prices for their plastic tool sheds—$299 for a 5x2 and $429 for a 5x4. I’ve seen children’s toy-boxes almost as big for a whole lot less. © 2016

Saturday, October 22, 2016

For Want Of A Nail

“For want of a nail the shoe was lost,
For want of a shoe the horse was lost,
For want of a horse the rider was lost,
For want of a rider the battle was lost,
For want of a battle the Kingdom was lost,
And all for the want of a nail.”

The above English parable has been around since at least 1640, since that’s when it was first published. My maternal grandmother used to quote the parable to me when I was little, trying unsuccessfully to ingrain morals and good sense into my developing mind.

Nails were actually a precious commodity in the early days of this country, when they were still handmade. Old, unused houses and barns were often burned down just to salvage the nails from the ashes. Poor folks often salvaged nails whenever possible over the last couple centuries to avoid having to buy them. I know that anyone who grew up during the depression was so inclined, including my father. We NEVER threw nails away when I was a kid, but saved them and straightened them for re-use. If my memory serves me correctly, there were a few salvaged nails used in my own house as we built it many years ago.

When we tore the back ell off the farm house where I grew up, to replace it with new construction, I saved some of the old square nails, The house was started in 1865 and finished in 1866, so I know the age of the nails precisely. No doubt they were made upriver at Wheeling, West Virginia, then the nail capitol of the world. I’d originally planned to make rustic crafts and primitive furniture as a hobby in my old age, so that was my reason for saving them. I’ve kept them in two buckets in the basement these last 20 years or so. There’s perhaps a gallon-and-a-half in each bucket.

I really need to clean and organize my basement workshop, and will probably try to do so this winter. Maybe that will keep me from going stir-crazy on cold windy days when my ears and old bones can’t handle it outdoors. It was wet, cold and windy outside today, so I gathered up some empty plastic fruit and nut jars from items purchased at Chinamart the last few months and headed to the basement. I sat the first bucket of nails on an overturned mud bucket and began sorting. I knew that I’d have three sizes of cut nails, but I found that I had even more. As it turns out, I’ve got 3d, 4d, 6d, and 8d nails, and a few 20d spikes. I also have a small duke’s mixture of more modern wire nails and spikes from patches and repairs over the decades since the original construction.

The framing was under-sized pine post and beam with in-filled studs inserted into shallow mortises. The frame was held together with oak pins, but an occasional 20d spike was used here and there. (For those who don’t know, the “d” stands for “penny,” and the number is the cost in pennies for 100 of that size nail back in fifteenth century England.) The 3d and 4d nails were used to nail the lath to the inside of the walls for plaster. The 6d and 8d were used mostly on the tongue and groove flooring, if I remember, and on any original sections of siding.

Burning the houses in the old days left most of the nails still straight, but I didn’t have that option, since we were saving the front of the house. Instead, we had to pry the boards loose with mattocks and wrecking bars and pull the nails manually. That put a bend in many of them. From past experience in reusing square nails, I know that they have a crystalline structure to the steel, unlike modern wire nails. As a result, they break easily when you try to straighten them. That was probably another advantage of burning, as it would anneal the nails (make them softer). I’m thinking that it might be wise to put these nails through a fire before I try to straighten them.

One thing is for sure, I’ll have a lot of time invested in these nails before I can ever use them. It will take time to anneal them and time to straighten them, but first, time to sort them. The time will be compounded by the fact that there are many more 3d and 4d’s than I remembered, and each one must be looked at separately. Oh well, what’s time to a retired old geezer (especially when it’s cold outside)? © 2016

109 Years Ago Today

Click image to enlarge.
... "Grace" (probably a Boone or Robinson) at Parkersburg, West Virginia sent this card to my great aunt, also at Parkersburg. They were both living at Red Hill, I suspect, and my aunt was only five at the time. I don't know how old Grace was. These cards with little attached envelopes seemed to be popular at one time.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Another Day, Another Grump

Two times recently, I’ve stopped by my regular doctor’s office to get a blood draw that my heart doctor wanted. Both times, the paperwork had yet to arrive. Yesterday, I called the heart doctor’s office and spoke with his nurse, who admitted that the computer showed that the request had never been sent out. She promised to do it as soon as we hung up. When I got to my MD’s office this morning, for a scheduled check up, the paperwork STILL wasn’t there.

Both times that I’d been there before, it was when they’d just opened, and I hadn’t eaten yet, in case they wanted a fasting draw. I told them that they should ask my doctor if HE was going to want a blood draw for my appointment, and if so, that they could do it while I was there. They must be scared of the likable little fella, because they wouldn’t do it. My appointment this morning was at 10. I hadn’t eaten since supper the night before and was starved. SO, on the way, I made the decision to invite my wife, who was along just to get out of the house, to a cheap breakfast at the home of the fallen arches. I figured if they wanted a fasting blood draw, they could just wait a few days.

I had gone inside a few minutes early to give the phlebotomist time to do the blood draw for my heart doctor, but of course, that wasn’t to be. The office was packed and it was 10:50 before the doctor finally made it to the exam room. He didn’t need to see the bag of pill bottles the nurse had told me on the phone to bring. He DID say that he knew what the heart doctor would be testing for and that I could go ahead and have the draw, which I did. I’d been inside an hour-and-a-half when I rejoined my severely irritated wife.

The rest of the town visit went a little better. I took the missus to the mall to take a round and she found the calendar of country scenes that she buys every year, so her mood improved. Then, we went to the Chinamart on the far side of town, and I snuck over to Tractor Supply and found two small pneumatic tires that I needed for the frame of my chainsaw mill, so MY mood improved. I didn’t get anything done outside today when we got back, due to the weather, but hey, you can’t have everything!

Oh, while I was waiting in the doctor’s office, a former co-worker sat down beside me and visited a few minutes. He was saved while we were still working at the factory and now visits Chinamart nearly every day and subtly witnesses to the employees that he now knows by name. He also visits a couple nursing homes every week with cookies and bananas and visits and prays with anyone who’ll let him. He says that some call him “the banana preacher.” He also fills an empty pulpit now and then. It was really good to see him. Few of us manage to serve the Lord so well in our “retirement.” © 2016

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

A Day In The Life

I had to get up early (for me) today, so the missus and I could be at the bank when it opened. There, I withdrew my grossly inadequate monthly stipend, gave my wife her cut and headed to the DMV, so that she could renew her license/registration. The crowd at the DMV was pretty light today, possibly because it was raining. I think my wife was the fourth person in the door and we were out in 10 minutes. THAT’S never happened before. I’ve always noticed that there are only 2-3 folks out front when the door opens, but gradually, more women drift in. On days when the wait has been long, I’ve seen them still drifting in a half-hour after opening. I don’t know if they purposely schedule them that way, or if they just come in when they feel like it.

Afterward, we went to Chinamart, where I got a little stainless steel cooking pot for “camping.” I actually got it for cooking foraged items, including sassafras tea. (In reality, there’s a second, smaller pot that nests in the big one that I’d use for teas.) I HATED to buy the $10 off-brand Chinese version, but the $25 American brand was made over there, too.

When we got home, I took the pooch out and kept her with me while I put a tarp over the lawn mower, in case it rained again. I also broke the handle out of the brush hook that I mentioned the other day, to prepare for making it into a bill hook. As I looked at it, I decided that I could probably save the stamped steel socket and cut about 3-1/2 inches off the lower end and make a light axe for trimming and carrying in the woods. I think there’d still be more than enough blade to make a bill hook. That way, I’d get TWO tempered tools out of one.

I also stood the old grubbing hoe under the deck out of the weather. I sort of dread cutting a hickory tree for a handle, since I don’t have that many hickories around. (Grammar-Check tells me that last sentence is a fragment, but it lies all the time, so I usually ignore it.) Since the Emerald Ash Borers are in the area, I might be wise to settle for an ash handle, before they're all ruined, but they aren’t as strong as hickory.

After a nap, and watching The 700 Club with my wife (I’m not Pentecostal, but watch it anyway), I took the pooch out again and sat on the porch with her until the mosquitoes finally found me. Then, I came in and did a few things on the computer. From the sound, I can tell that the missus is watching “The Little Floosies Women of LA” right now for lack of anything better to watch. Things get desperate sometimes, I guess.

I tried to find my phone a little while ago, to make my usual evening call to Mom, but couldn’t locate it even after checking the truck. I had the missus call my number and was soon reminded that it was charging at the wall socket beside the chair where I was sitting. Yup, senility, thy name is Gorges! Guess I’d better wrap this up and get it posted so you folks can thrill at all the excitement in my life. Hope your day was more productive than mine! © 2016

Monday, October 17, 2016

The Useful And The Useless (pic)

Click photo to enlarge.

In today’s photo, you’ll see two severely neglected tools. In the foreground is an antique grubbing hoe that was my father’s, and probably his father’s before him. I’ve used it a lot myself, when I was young. It was used for cutting light brush and heavy weeds in the pasture and elsewhere, in those out-of-the-way spots where the cutter-bar of the tractor wouldn’t reach (corners, steep hillsides, etc.).

If you look up the term “grubbing hoe” on the internet, you’ll get all kinds of pictures of round-handled eye hoes. I never really considered a common eye hoe a grubbing hoe, even when made heavy-duty, as some are. For one thing, they’re cast or forged as one piece. The grubbing hoes of my youth (and I’ve seen many) were made in TWO pieces, so the heavy blade could be replaced by cutting or grinding the heads off the three rivets holding it and putting another piece of tempered steel in its place. Most blades were 5-6 inches long and 4-5 inches wide. I’ve seen the thickness vary from that of a recycled plow coulter to nearly a half-inch. It DOES have to be tempered though, or it won’t keep an edge or last very long.

Also, the eye of all the grubbing hoes that I’ve ever seen weren’t round, but were a modified rectangle—full round on the bottom and with the corners rounded on top, and taller than wide. The handle was like that of an axe in the hand, including a swell at the end of the 4’ handle, but it still slid in from the top of the blade, like a regular eye hoe. It was also swung full overhead like an axe when cutting really heavy stuff, but it could also be used like a regular hoe in the garden. In fact, most folks back then much preferred a grubbing hoe in the garden, as the weight made the work easier. The handle in this hoe was getting to the point of replacement long before I forgot and left it under a pile of salvaged lumber that I’d brought up from the farm when I sold it. It definitely needs replaced now, which means that it will probably take at least a couple years, since I’ll first have to find a good hickory (or MAYBE ash), cut it, split it, dry it and then make the handle myself. I’ve never seen these sort of handles in the stores, even back when I was a kid. I hope I get it done someday, since there’s been many a time over the years when I could have used it.

Behind the grubbing hoe in the photo, you’ll see a brush hook. I bought it new many years ago, used it a few times, stood it in the barn and never bothered with it again. Maybe I just don’t know the proper way to use it, but I always used it in a chopping motion, like an axe. The only thing is that I found an axe to be ten times better. The one thing that it WAS good for was slapping me in the head with half-severed brush, briers and vines. I think I’ll throw the loop away and put a one-handed handle on the end of the blade to turn it into a bill hook, also known as a fascine knife. Small ones are good for corn and weeds and brush THAT YOU ARE HOLDING WITH THE OTHER HAND. They’re still used a lot in England to lay hedges and for other agricultural purposes.

In times past, some were made with handles from four to ten feet long for orchard and forestry use, before the idea of pole saws came along. They were also used in war with devastating results. For both tree and battlefield use, they were generally hooked behind a limb (or a chink in someone’s armor) and pulled quickly downward, or forward. Halberds are closely related, and are still carried by the pope’s guards. One thing is for sure; I don’t plan on getting whacked on the head anymore. © 2016

Sunday, October 16, 2016

My Front Yard Wood-Yard (pics)

Click images to enlarge.
Viewed from the porch.

In these photos, you’ll see my wood-yard and “workshop” beneath the big white oak in the front yard. The shop is composed of a 20” chunk of wood for a stool, and a 12” chunk for my workbench. It’s mostly just axe-work and hatchet work that I do there. The stool also gives me a place to catch my breath when I’m cutting and splitting firewood. There’s a big white oak in the back yard that would serve just as well for such a workshop, but it’s at the edge of the woods and tends to be a bit mosquito-ridden. Besides, the wood rack needs to be near the drive-way so that strangers can pull alongside to load their pickups. I’ve had the rack there for a couple years now, but I had to refurbish it this year.

First, the runners on the ground (one white oak, one bitternut hickory) had deteriorated just enough that the bark was loose and bug infested. I used my eye-hoe to cut any grass growing around them and scrape off the bark and remove it from the area. Then I swept the poles with a broom to remove any loose material. Following that, I poured a mix of about ¾ cup of Twenty Mule Team Borax and one gallon of water over the two poles to make them less susceptible to fungus and insect damage. I don’t know if that mix was the right strength, it just seemed adequate to me.

Secondly, the rather puny stakes that had been at the ends of the stack rotted off this past summer. I found a couple reasonably straight saplings in the nearby woods that were a bit bigger than what I’d originally used and cut them off at double the length of my cane. The poles ended up being 70 inches long, and about 1-1/2” at the small end. One was a dead black gum and the other a live red oak. I gave them a long point on the small end with my trusty little Boy Scout hatchet (one of my favorite tools). Then, I made holes with a crowbar where I wanted them to go by raising the bar over my head and driving it into the soil. Following that I’d ream the hole a bit, then repeat the process until I felt that the hole was both deep and wide enough to accept the pole. I tapped the poles home with a few blows from my 14 pound sledge until they were even heights. (Incidentally, no country place is complete without an old-fashioned crowbar. Mine is an inch thick and 54” long. The tempered bar was forged to a point on one end, and flat on the other. It appears to have been made from an ancient drive shaft. I’ve used it to move logs, stones, buildings, and timbers and have set many a tomato stake and bean pole with it, the latter not too deeply, of course.)

Thirdly, the baler twine from post top to post top had gone bad on me. I looked around for more baler twine, but I’d apparently used up the few pieces that a neighbor gave me when I first made the rack. Growing up, baler twine seemed like grass and autumn leaves, one of those things in life of which there would always be aplenty. Even though I used it for dozens of purposes, there were times that we would accumulate so much used twine that we’d have to load it onto the farm trailer and dump it somewhere to get it out of the barn. These days, I’d dearly love to have a few barrels full of used twine. It’s strange, sometimes, the things that can become valuable to us. I could probably still buy a two-roll bale of the new stuff at a farm supply place, but I have neither the money, nor a good place to store it. I looked in the basement for something else that might work, but found nothing, so I ended up buying 50 feet of American made camo parachute cord, found in the sporting goods section at Chinamart for about $5, just to get the eight feet plus that I needed. I found a bundle over in the hardware section for a dollar less, but it was made in China, so I paid the extra dollar.

It’s eight feet between the posts of the rack, so I made a mark four feet up on each post so that it would show the needed height to make a face-cord of firewood. (Actually, I made them at 4’1” so no-one could complain that I was shorting them, plus I always round the top of the stack slightly, for the same reason.) For 50 years, my grandfather and father sold such a measure as a “cord rick,” a common term in this area at one time. However, the term was gradually replaced by the modern term “face cord.” I quit using the old term when some dufus with a dictionary tried to argue me into selling him a full cord for the cord rick price. He stopped just short of threatening to take me to court. I told him that I’d buy every full cord of wood that he could find at that price, then easily resell it to folks happy to pay the price at which I had it advertised. He finally hung up on me.

It took me a few minutes of three different days to get this tiny task completed. In the old days, I’d have had it done in one hitch. Times have changed. At least my wood-yard is ready for business now. At the rate that I have to work these days, I’ll do well to get a face cord every couple of weeks, since there will be brush to stack and briers to cut. But, even if I AM that slow, that will buy me a tank of gas when it’s sold. Who knows, maybe I can get out a load a week; that would be a lot better. The missus will soon start telling me how ugly my little wood-yard looks there in the front yard, but that’s okay; I’ll be outside and enjoying myself! © 2016

Friday, October 14, 2016

Wouldn’t It Be Great?


Wouldn’t it be great if voters would start treating this presidential election as having the life and death importance that it has for our nation, instead of like it’s some junior high school popularity contest? Wouldn’t it be great if people looked at a candidate’s past performance, business success, voting record or other proof of competency, instead of just whether that person has some phony smarmy, bland, “harmless” personality? Wouldn’t it be great if voters quit voting for one person just to spite another? Wouldn’t it be great if people took Christ seriously in noticing the beam in their own eye, before they get all apoplexic about the splinters in the eyes of the candidates? Wouldn’t it be great if some folks quit living in the fairy tale world where third parties matter? Wouldn’t it be great if voters considered which candidate would provide the best future for their children and grandchildren, instead of whether they find them perfect enough to meet THEIR “high” moral standards? Wouldn’t it be great if everybody just grew up? © 2016

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Another One Bites The Dust

I hadn’t been out of high school for a year, probably, when the first of my classmates passed away. Since then, quite a few others have done the same, along with many, many other people that I knew from other places. While talking to my mother on the phone this evening, she told me that my ex-brother-in-law passed away Monday. I hadn’t seen him for 35 years, or longer (when I got divorced), and had wondered where he’d ended up. It turned out that he still lived here in town and was co-owner of a bar that I drive by a couple times a week.

He and his mother were the only two people in life that I ever hated. My feelings were due to the way they treated my ex before we were married. I finally figured out that my feelings were hurting no-one but myself and got a handle on my emotions. However, I never developed any respect for either one of them, but once married, I managed to get along with him and his mother for my wife’s sake. Sometimes, I wonder if the reason she married me was a subconscious desire to get out of a bad home situation.

He was one of those rare individuals who could do anything he turned his hand to doing. He was an excellent brick and block layer, could do ANYTHING related to construction, was a very talented mechanic and a pretty good guitar picker from what I remember. He wasn’t afraid of hard work and supported his family well enough from all I’ve ever heard. Unfortunately, when he was young, he liked to spend his spare time smoking weed and running around with his friends, or staying home drinking and beating his wife. I don’t think that marriage lasted long. I don’t know if he had any others. He DID have a fiancée when he died.

He left behind his sisters, a son, three grandkids and a deceased daughter, I think Mom told me. I closed that chapter of my life long ago, so I won’t go to the funeral or even send a card, but I still feel bad for the family. Like me, he was 61 and had weight problems, so I suppose his heart got him.

The saddest thing is that I doubt if he, OR any of his family ever accepted the Lord. © 2016

I Give Up

I believe this presidential election is the most important election in the history of the United States. We have a choice between a candidate that is literally serving Satan, and one that is talented, patriotic, and savvy, but who sometimes has all the charm of a bull moose. And then there are the “also rans”—the third party candidates; even their names don’t matter.

The intelligent folks long ago realized that there really WAS no choice if they valued the future of their nation. The haters, of course, are continuing to serve Satan, like their leader in the White House, and the one who is running to replace him. The third parties, for better or worse, are so minuscule in numbers that they serve no purpose, except to pull votes away from the patriotic candidate.

Amazingly, there are a huge number of folks out there who just can’t make up their mind about who they’re going to vote for; I call them “the mindless middle,” and I think that’s being overly kind. Now I’ve been reposting a LOT of political stuff that I see on Facebook, hoping that some of it will reach those poor mindless souls and get them to thinking. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be the case.

Even more interesting to me are the Christians, who somehow think that deliberately allowing Satan to win (by not voting, or going third party) somehow makes them more moral. I’ve had discussions with a couple of them lately and it seems to me that they like to cherry-pick Bible verse to back up their warped views of morality. I believe that God gave us a brain because He meant for us to use it, but many don’t seem to look at it that way.

Yes, I know that I don’t have the corner on the market on either morality or intelligence, but this election is so day and night that there’s no excuse for indecision or self-righteousness. Still, I’ve grown tired of the insanity. I’m old and in ill health, and this election is making me older by the day. I give up. I’m going to do my best to post no more candidate-oriented posts from here on out, though I may slip up on occasion and do it before I think.

This world is going to hell on a banana peel anyway (and is supposed to, temporarily, if you read Revelation), so let it go. From here on out, I’m just going to try to sit back and let the Satan-servers, the mindless and the self-righteous go skipping off to tribulation hand in hand. One last thought for the self-righteous, though, I was raised being taught that the church is raptured BEFORE the tribulation, but the more I study Revelation, the more it appears that just isn’t so. I might croak before it comes, I hope so, but guess where that leaves YOU! © 2016

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

So Disappointed

Life has held a lot of disappointments for me, but I can’t complain much about most of them, since so many have been my own fault. There is a GREAT disappointment, however, that is NOT my doing, and it’s the most heartbreaking of all. That disappointment is seeing what this once-great nation is becoming. The “American Dream” was still viable when I was a kid but, looking back, I can see how the decline was already starting. When I was in high school, and maybe before, the “dumbing down” of America’s future voters had already begun in the schools. That means that three generations have now fallen under the brain-washing of the communists and socialists that quietly took over the field of education long ago, though most of the third generation isn’t quite voting age yet.

A perfect example is the support of Bernie Sanders among young folks. While it’s good that most of them loathe Hillary Clinton, they still support socialism, completely ignorant of the fact that socialism automatically turns to communism and that communism is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of millions of people during the 20th Century. Globalism (world-wide socialism) is the newest worry, though it’s not “new” at all. Old Man Bush was the first president to actually mention the NEW WORLD ORDER in a positive way. Eisenhower and Kennedy had spoken against it; most since then have just pretended that it didn’t exist.

This election, we have vast numbers of people who just can’t bring themselves to vote either for Trump or Clinton. They’re just too righteous, to hear them explain it. Many fully understand that the election of Clinton, after eight years of Obama, will be the final nail in America’s coffin, but they don’t care. Others really are so stupid that they don’t realize. Some say they simply won’t vote; others plan on throwing their vote away on one of the third party candidates. One is no better than the other, nor any nobler.

I actually have more respect for the gun-grabbing, sodomizing, baby-killing heathens that openly support Hillary than I do for the pseudo-righteous idiots who are literally selling their own children into globalistic slavery. They just can’t bear to dirty their hands voting for a talented, proven leader who, sometimes (unfortunately), has all the charm of a bull moose.

I’m VERY disappointed in those people, some of whom I know personally or online. Most KNOW better, that’s the irony. Sadly, if they get their way, I’m sure that the day will come when their enslaved children and grandchildren curse their very names. I’ll probably be gone. Unfortunately, many of them will be also, thus their delicate sensitivities will never have to see the death and destruction that they are wreaking on their heirs. What a pity. Nothing would be more fitting for them than to have to live in the hell-on-earth that they are ushering in for their children. © 2016

How I Sharpen An Axe Or Hatchet

Axes were always a big part of my life growing up. My dad raised beef cattle, so we were always either expanding the pasture and hayfields a bit around the edges, or working to keep the forest from reclaiming them. Sometimes, this meant cutting trees with the chainsaw and then limbing them with axes. Other times, it meant using the axes to grub out sprouts and saplings that were invading the field edges. We cut some timber in our woods, too, using the axes the same way there, plus using them to split firewood, as well. Most of the axes that I remember when young were about half worn out, but Dad was so good with them, that it didn’t seem to matter. I was probably in my teens before he got two or three new ones. We used nothing but double-bitted axes, incidentally.

Dad showed me early on how to sharpen tools, so even before I was big enough to off-bear at our sawmill, I’d pass time there by keeping Dad’s axes sharp. He had a round carborundum stone (maybe five inches across) with a coarse side and a fine side. You could sharpen the axes dry, but we always preferred to put a little water on the stone every minute or two to keep the stone from loading up with ground metal and stone dust, making the stone less effective. You’d use the coarse side in a circular motion until it was sharp. Then you’d switch to the fine side to polish it and perfect the edge a little. (I don’t recommend the little “pucks” sold to sharpen axes today, unless they have a holder to keep your fingers away from the blade, otherwise, I think they’re dangerous.)

I didn’t have “hair” on my arms then, but I had some peach fuzz. During the summer, when I was off from school, it mostly disappeared though, as I used my arms to see if the axes were sharp enough to shave. (Can you imagine modern mothers allowing such “dangerous” practices? I never cut myself once, though.)
One blade was saved for chopping and was kept a little thinner, so more time was spent grinding away on the blade body, further from the edge. The other blade was kept for grubbing and was left a little thicker, so it would be stronger and more resistant to chipping, should we hit a rock. I never bothered trying to sharpen out nicks on either bit, though, as that would have required removing too much metal. They wore off with use anyway. I always sharpened the chopping blade first, since it was the most important. The sharpening angle was steeper on the grubbing blade but, if I had the time, I’d even get it to where it would shave.
Those old axes may have started out with either curved or straight edges but, by the time I was old enough to pay any attention, the edges were VERY curved and Dad sharpened them from corner to corner. Not surprisingly, I did the same.

By the time we got the new axes, I was the official axe sharpener. Dad ran the chainsaw and kept it sharp, but he never needed to sharpen an axe anymore. The new ones were strait-edged eastern style, so we could use the heel of the bit as a pickeroon or log hook if we wanted, to move or roll logs. Being “the man in charge” of the axes, I decided to sharpen them “my way.” That meant that the stone never touched the last quarter-inch or so next to the toe of the blade. That way, the blade would never get that rounded look that had a tendency to make the axe glance back at you endwise, if your stroke wasn’t centered well enough. It you always stood correctly, in relation to the swing of your axe, there was no problem; but I figured why not alleviate the problem altogether? I kept the heel as thin as I dared, and as square as possible, so it would dig into the wood easily when moving logs, and I usually kept it sharp clear to the corner. Still, I tried very hard not to over-sharpen the heel, so it wouldn’t get rounded.

Generally speaking, on the chopping blade, I spend a WHOLE lot more time honing on the metal BEHIND the edge, rather than on the edge itself. That helps keep the sharpening angle lower and helps prevent you from having a chisel edge. Just like sharpening a saw, you need to stop the second the shine on the edge disappears.

I think I saw an article somewhere once that listed 12 different ways to sharpen an axe. I’m sure some of them left something to be desired. I’ve ground axes on grinding wheels and belt sanders a few times, mostly when salvaging used axes that I’ve picked up (old axes usually have better steel). You can’t grind too much at a time, though, or you’ll draw out the temper.

A couple times after Dad passed away, I got lazy in zero weather and didn’t build a fire to keep my axe warm. As a result, I busted a pretty good chunk out of one blade on both axes. The missing chip was so big that I couldn’t even continue grubbing with those blades, so I had no choice but to grind them. Otherwise, I still use the old round stone that Dad used. Not only does it do a perfect job, it’s outlasted a thousand files. Sometimes, the old ways are still the best. © 2016

Monday, October 10, 2016

The Danger Of “Cute Little Movies”

This week, my wife and I watched a couple of what used to be called “B-grade” movies in the old days. They had mostly lesser known actors and actresses and both were supposedly about Christmas. (My wife LOVES anything about Christmas, while I bite my tongue, since I no longer believe that Christians should celebrate it.) She picked the movies up a few years ago in Chinamart’s $5 bin. They’re those basically clean little movies you see that many Christian parents get to watch with their kids, since most of what’s in the theaters is filth.

The first was about a couple of journalists at competing newspapers that get into a battle in print about the pluses and minuses of the Christmas season. The interesting thing is that I remember no mention of God, Jesus or even wise men in the story. There were a couple lusty, but discrete characters and maybe a Santa Claus or two, plus a half-decent plug for “family.”

The second movie was about a couple kids who are shacking up in New York City. The boy takes his fiancée and her parents to somewhere in small town America, where Christmas is an insane obsession. The girl and her parents are Jewish, while the boy and his parents are “Christian.” You can tell the movie was written and directed by big city snobs, as the locals were portrayed as bubble-headed idiots, while the Jewish New Yorkers were basically normal.

The movie had several predictable little subplots, which made it a bit less one-dimensional, which was good. There were the expected social conflicts arising from such a match up. The Jewish traditions were portrayed reasonably well, but the “Christian” part was centered at a typical small church Christmas program where the boy’s ex-girlfriend (playing Mary to his Joseph) tried to seduce the guy into leaving his fiancée to come back to the village and “the people who knew him” (meaning mainly her, it was obvious). The take off of the movie was that the young couple would forge their own “new” holiday traditions (after he accepted her vegan, anti-gun, anti-hunting ways, of course).

The problem was that if either of them had taken their religion seriously, they would have understood that their traditions shouldn’t have been about “what worked” for them, but about what God expected. Incidentally, you got the impression that there was going to be a lot more Judaism in the new family than Christianity.

SO, if Christian parents show these films to their kids because the movies are “decent,” they are subtly brain-washing their kids into believing that Christianity is just a “tradition” that can be accepted or dropped as desired, and that “what works” for them is all that really matters. I doubt if many parents stop to think about that. © 2016

Sunday, October 9, 2016

A Geezerly Sunday Afternoon.

We forgot a couple things at Chinamart yesterday, so we went to the one on the other side of town today to finish our shopping. Well, actually my wife did the shopping, I stayed at the truck with the dog, my preferred place, now that the weather is cooler and we can take her along.

I found enough change in the truck to get her a double cheeseburger with an “extra” slice of cheese at the neighboring Burger King. The second slice used to be included, until they started raising their prices and shrinking their product. Of course, they messed it up and put everything on it, so I had to take it in and exchange it for what I’d ordered in the first place. Because someone couldn’t take the time to look at the screen long enough to tell what they were seeing, a sandwich got trashed. What a waste!

The mighty Dachshund used to actually prefer Burger King burgers, until they started making them of rubber and paraffin, or whatever the stuff is. She ate it today, since I put the extra slice of cheese on it and hand-fed it to her a tiny bite at a time. She still didn’t want it, but the hand-feeding was just too much for her to resist. After eating she took a long drink of water. Then, I put the retractable leash on her and sat on the truck tailgate while she wandered around, sniffed, sat watched traffic a few times and left her “mark” here and there. Finally, she came and sat a couple feet to my left and watched the traffic for a while. Eventually, she walked over to the driver’s side and prepared to climb down the curb and go to “her” door. That was her way of saying that she’d had her fill of the outdoor life and was ready to get back in the truck.

When my wife came out, she was irritated that I’d fed her a Burger King sandwich, knowing that the pooch now prefers McDonald’s. Besides, she insisted that the burgers are so puny that she’d just be hungry again later. (She turned out to be right, but I’m not sure it had anything to do with the minuscule burgers.) A bit of ice cream seemed to fit the bill. (Nothing spoiled about THAT dog!)

My wife had forgotten potatoes, so she wanted to go to the other store and get them. All the way there, she complained about how crowded the store was and how rude the people were. I keep telling her that folks are more tolerant of people on handicapped carts when they see a cane in the thing, but she’s too vain to be seen with one any more than absolutely necessary.

When she came out of the second store she was again complaining how crowded IT was and how rude the people were. I asked her if they were as bad as the folks at the other store, and she said no, but they were plenty bad. There really is a difference from one side of town to the other. I’ve got a theory as to why that is, but there’s no way to prove it. I think it’s because they average poorer, and haven’t had as good a raising, plus, a lot more of them over there come in from the back counties. I know that sounds pretentious, but I don’t know how else to explain it.

I took a nap when we got home, then went out looking for a sapling to make a sturdy six-foot pole. I already had one, but needed two. I need to start bringing in a few dollars for gasoline money, since the grocery costs rise, literally, on a weekly basis. I need to cut a few small trees around the place anyway, so I thought I’d sell a little firewood. The two poles will be at each end of the stack, with a couple pieces a baling twine from top to top to keep them from spreading outward. With a couple poles on the ground, my system makes a surprisingly strong but unobtrusive wood rack. I have another income plan for later, but I’ll discuss that another day. © 2016