A Salubrious Spring Equinox

Travels With Oso con Migo

Odyssey In America

Skinny Dipper Sigh

OAE Off and On and Off The Road Again — A Salubrious Spring Equinox

2022 Spring Equinox — Greetings Virtual Travellers and Pen Friends:
Where's Hazel? Pet Hazel. Hazel needs her dreadlocks trimmed.
World Famous Male Banana BreadMade my world famous Male Banana Bread for breky. YUM! Been so long since the last one I had to look up my recipe! Rhubarb Pi for New Year's Dinner is next to go in the oven. There will be at least one palindromic date this year in every month save one and one palindromic date will appear twice. My mother's birthday is a palindrome this year.

I’m starting out this year exercising my curmudgeonly obligations: As far as measurement of vision is concerned 2022 is not as good as 2020. Astickmaism is rampant! What corrective lens might be applied to improve the odds? About the only good I see is that the Sunspot Cycle is on the upswing. 

“Curmudgeons get credit for wisdom for the high hit rate that comes with hostility to easy optimism; and being old, and thus not really counting, they, like children, have a privilege to say what would constitute an offense if said by a fully responsible adult. And like children, the curmudgeon is considered cute for it, but unlike the child, he is also considered wise for it. To the extent curmudgeonism suspends the rules of mandatory polite comments, and indeed substitutes a rule of mandatory harrumphs when these complements are given, the curmudgeon gets credit for seeing the truth, or for telling it the way it is, and that counts as wisdom, even though this wisdom lies in everyone's knowledge that the polite complements or obligatory upbeat statements are inane.”      --William Ian Miller, Losing It (2011)

2021 Annual Precip:

1.21+.01+.19+.05+2.82+1.1+1.99+.36+1.67 = 9.40 year to date
jan     feb   mar  apr   jul    aug   sep    oct   dec    Missing months had Trace only.

2nd January The Days Are Getting Longer Now

33f here at dawn. A skin of ice on the bird bath. Cozy enough inside The Cat Drag'd Inn but I have to keep my shirt on.

13 January Talking About Food

A correspondent wrote: “Where do you cook everything, in a stove on the bus ?” Good question. Gives me paws to reflect and remember and dig through the photo gallery...  The Cat Drag'd Inn has a well appointed galley and a one steak barbie on a milk crate on the patio. The photo to the Late GalleyEarly Galleyleft is the galley from about when I started into this Odyssey In America in November 1997. The photo on the right is from about 17 years later after I replaced the microwave and washed the dishes. In all that time I was still using the same blue Melita Coffee Filter Holders. That glaring white rectangle on the right is the front of the new microwave; the fridge is to the right but will not pose for pictures. The green string clothespin holder in front of the microwave is one of the two Official Strings--the other was orange--that we used on the drink mix bags during the Troop 55 50 Miler in 1970.  The copper samovar --Sammy The Samovar-- used to sit on the three-burner stove just inside the left rear door of the 1967 yellow Chevy G-10 van, Willshedoit, 1967 to 1985, my Residence Vehicle that preceded The Cat Drag’d Inn. Sammy has had his nozzle replaced and rebuilt (...would that mine could be so well cared for...) and still makes hot water for dishes. Thanks for asking.

Word of the day: /þetta reddast/

...can be translated to "it will all work out okay".

Built a raven feeding platform today. A place to put roadkill and other leftovers otherwise going to the dogs.

Thanks to Bizzarro--Thank you very much.Catsider this

“ preferred medium is clay.” ...get it? Okay if you don’t, I had to think thrice.

Stand By Your Ham

Stand By Your Ham, by Beth, K1XKRecorded at The Cat Drag'd Inn Studio by ajo, K1oiQ (with a little help from his friends) on 22i27 in the early morning sun. This was a dress rehearsal of Stand By Your Ham by Beth, K1XK, for a production staged later that day at QuartzFest, Mile99, RoadRunner Camp, Quartzsite AridZona.

Half A Loaf Is Better Than None

Lightning blitz run to Quartzsite and back yesterday[28th January, Friday]. 198 miles round and about 8 gallons of petrol to deliver half a loaf of my world famous Male Banana Bread to A.C. one of my fan club members at Mile99. On Tuesday NU7DE Desert Circle Amateur Radio Club held their annual meeting via Zoom. Wenzday was Food Bank and visitors from Pie Town and Maine.

2022i31 Monday—Attack of The Covid

Negative fever and chills this morning after a cold shivery night. Felt better by mid day but at supper my oral was 100.6f. Took an ibuprofen and by bedtime temperature was normal. Busy day anyhow with my usual End Of The Week/Month housekeeping.

Febter 1st Feeling Strange

Covid Test StripTemperature OK but wrote PCP about fever yesterday: “ should get tested...” Fancy that. Only a few days ago the “iHealth COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test” arrived in the mail. So I broke into that package and to make a long storey short, tested POSITIVE! Messaged that result to my PCP and they immediately scheduled me for a professional test on the 2nd. By wenzday after noon that result was also positive and I am now under house arrest in the care and authority of Hurricane Hazel-Rah for the next five days.

Insufficient words supra. Some further detail...

Yesterday, Wenzday, 2222...

After a two hour drive to 3rd and Earll Streets (the traffic was horrible-slow-stop and go with construction delay and rerouting...) my nose was professionally swabbed by a masked man wearing a white hat. Subsequently, later in the afternoon, a nurse from my PCP called to tell me I am indeed POSITIVE and should maintain isolation for at least five days, maybe longer depending symptoms. So what should I do in the meantime? “Enjoy the ride. As long as you are in no distress there is nothing to be done. Similar to any cold or flu. Drink water, take naps.” Trying to keep my sense of sanity and humour... No silver bullets forthcoming.

The CDC says that

... infectiousness peaks one day before symptom onset and declines within a week of symptom onset. And the incubation period is anywhere from 2-15 days after exposure. Lots of wiggle room there. So I could have picked up this bug anywhern and been infecting all over the past week or I could have picked up my case from anyone of  a dozen people in the past week. I'm quite happy that I have been vaccinated and boosted. All somewhat vague and problematical. So I made a list of people I've been to within handshaking distance over the past week and wrote to let them know about my status. Please sanitise this message before reading further... One correspondent replied:
Masked (young) man...
> Recent data indicate that you are 78 times more likely to suffer
> serious infection (or die) if not vaccinated.
>   Why can't the nay-sayers understand that?

Because for the same reasons that engender such quotations as: "War is where the young and stupid are tricked by the old and bitter into killing each other."
                        --Niko Bellic
Conservatives say teaching sex education in the public schools will promote
promiscuity. With our education system? If we promote promiscuity the same
way we promote math or science, they've got nothing to worry about.
                     --Beverly Mickens
 “Most people would sooner die than think; in fact, they do so.”
                ― Bertrand Russell

...and because such analogue concepts as common sense and round clock dials are no longer taught in digital school nor imbued by parents. Even such concepts as Black or white (why is one capitalised and the other not?) are misleading and divisive. Granted "free range kids" are making a comeback but without common sense to bolster the movement the idea will amount to little more than chicken feed or a way to pasture goats.

One good thing about all this is that the "nay-sayers" are by and large people from Red States and come the next election there will be fewer Republicans around.

Thursday, Febter 3

I'm feeling OK. About like any common cold. 5-10 days of isolation won't be any much different to my usual hermitic living. Perhaps the vaccine is doing some good. The main question is: Where--from whom--did I contract this plague? But the answer to that question is dependent upon the incubation period and that seems to be a bone of contention in the medical literature and folklore. Someone I know or brushed close to in the past 10-15 days is sick, or at least a carrier. Time for to wash my dishes and then another nap before lunch.
Wear Mask Poster
The worst effect of all this may be the deterioration of my spelling.

I can’t help but reuse these already old clichés:   Half of us are going to come out of this quarantine as amazing cooks. The other half will come out with a drinking problem.


May we discuss cultural semantics without your being offended? What is the matter with us and our language that we have such difficulty saying “Thank You”? Instead we say “I’d like to thank the”... then they don’t. When I hear that phrase I think So why don’t you just say “Thank you for” and get on with your speech. Or would you like to say thank you but you’d rather not and so I listen for that "but". Or we say “I’m sorry to hear about”... When I hear that phrase I think: Well, I’m sorry you’re sorry so I won’t tell you next time. I mean, after all, you did ask.

And the part about taking offence. If you want to take offense over anything I have said or done then that is your problem, not mine. If you want to be offensive that is also your problem for I will not be offended any more than I can offend. That concept is not in my reality.
   Abbot Anthony taught Abbot Ammonas, saying: You must advance yet further in the fear of God. And taking him out of the cell he showed him a stone, saying: Go and insult that stone, and beat it without ceasing. When this had been done, Saint Anthony asked him if the stone had answered back.
   No, said Ammonas. Than Abbot Anthony said: You too must reach the point where you no longer take offense at anything.”  --Saint Anthony of Egypt
  "Be who you are and say what you feel,
 because those who mind don't matter
 and those who matter don't mind."
                    --Dr. Seuss

Pavlov's CatPavlov's Cat

 Certainly not a failure as far as the cat is concerned. Except perhaps for Pavlov failing to appreciate the intelligence of his cat. Even Hurricane Hazel knows better than to fall for that trick.

Considering an Electric Pickup

My other friend Mike recently bought an electric motor Fiat. Enough range for running around town--post office and shopping--but insufficient for doctor visits all the way to the other side of Phoenix and back. So he keeps his old petrol motor X-90 and says a car that has range is worth two that need charge.

How Am I, Doing?

I've been under the bed (water pump failure thrice), under the table (looking for cat toys [playmates she brings in--Look Daddy what followed me home; can I keep it?]), under the bus (serious oil leak from rear main seal of the big diesel), under the toilet (flush valve leaking--not repaired yet), under the computer (looking for bits and bytes of files lost in a disc crash), and under the weather (the attack of the dreaded COVID plague). See above: “Attack of The Covid” in case you skipped over that part.

The Water Works!

Distressing how so many parts are no longer available or out of stock. But saved by a young clerk at Buckeye's Home Town Hardware who could "think outside the box" and kludge together a solution. All set now. The water works!

Final Exit?

Thank you anyway. I had this sciatic pain a few years ago and ended up in a pain clinic and some sort of drug the dosage of which had to be ramped up over the course of a week and then could not be stopped at risk of death until ramped down. All I have read from Mayo Clinic and other sources says that Sciatic Pain goes away eventually (or one just gets used to the debilitation...?) but now is up to about 7.3 on the Richter Scale. And overdoses of Ibuprofen cause liver damage.

Off to the eye doctor today.

And then I must needs commiserate with a friend whose eyesight is failing and is contemplating his Final Exit before he can no longer see to pull the plug.

Almost March

I wrote this paragraph yesterday and somewhere in the middle my email client said "Unable to save draft..." That was the first warning I ignored. When I pressed Send the client said "Send Failed". Checked my connectivity. The internet is rather flaky here and often goes and comes. Connectivity was good. Could not save a draft. Could not send. I copied and pasted all the text into my Scratch Pad.txt but could not save that file. That got my attention so I took a screen shot and could not save that. This is getting serious. Took a photo of the monitor screen with my handy oblong and proceeded to shut down all applications and reboot the machine. Reboot failed. Thus began a day the storey of which will take all day to relate; a nightmare I care not to revisit. Still cleaning up after. Eventually I emailed my self the 9MB photo and found OCR cannot make sense of the image so herewith I transcribe the text. At least I didn't have to reinvent all my thoughts.

Recovering nicely from another computer crash. Distressing how much I have become dependent upon this time and labour saving contraption. The operative word hidden back there is "trap".

22iii04 Marching To Spring-Ahead

Yesterday morning whilst measuring the weather I tripped over a profound question; at least I thought my question was profound. Still is for that matter. In the course of sorting out the monthly Weather Summary I count the occurrences of twice a day observed wind directions so as to determine the prevailing direction for the month. The cardinal points: North, East, South, West, and the ordinal points between them: NE, NW, SE, SW. [And therein is the first inkling of my question.] Then there is the circle of half-wind points between the cardinals and ordinals: NNE, ENE, ESE, SSE, SSW, WSW, WNW, NNW further increasing my puzzlement. I record the observed wind on a 16-point compass rose. An hundred years ago in Scouts one had to memorize and recite in clockwise order the 16-point compass rose. Who originated that format, that naming convention? Why do we not say East-North-North or West-West-South?

"Daylight Slaving Time"

...coming soon to a clock near you. Business as usual otherwise. One of the salubrious effects of living here is that AridZonans don’t screw around with the clock twice a year.  Walkabout yesterday secured two bags of trash from the outback and three more Ajo Lily plants were seen. Two were those I had previously surveyed and one was new. No stalks or buds yet but lots of leaves.

Rain In My Fridge

New problem. Not fatal or even serious this time. Over the past few weeks I have noted an increase in the wetness of stuff in my fridge. Initially chalking the effect up to increased humidity--unusual for this part of AridZona but not unheard of--but when this morning water cascaded out when I opened the door and the pressed-card egg carton fell apart I just knew something was awry.

Found the water collection tray under the cooling fins full. The drain tube plugged. I pulled and pushed a bit on the internal fan power wire that snakes through the drain tube and got a slow drip going. Seems the sheath on that red/black pair nearly fills the collection tray drain so not much of a crumb of debris or a dead fly creates a clog. Eventually I removed the sheath from the #22 wires and reinstalled the red/black pair to the drain tube. Drains better. Fridge is dry. Not sure where the debris came from in the first place. Dust from the air? One of Mikey’s pet flies from the egg factory across town drowned in the drainage? Some ort escaped from a leftover left too long? I'll try to keep a closer watch.

 3^4=2022?Tonopah Pilot, Sigh...

I asked for some suggestions for an 81st theme song. The results are in. My choice is: CANDY & THE KISSES - The 81 suggested by Laura Zurlo. Thanks Laura! Runner up: "Eighty-One" by Miles Davis suggested by Rick Stutsman. Thanks Rick! Thank you all who sent suggestions; I’ll keep them all on my list in case I come round this way again some day.

Pi Day!

The price spread caught my eye at the Pilot in Tonopah then later noticed the anagram.

Saint Patrick’s Day

The letters I am using to type this; this is their first time ever being used, they are still green!

Whose Face is This?Inquiring minds want to know:

Whose scowling bearded face is that to the right of George?

Spring Equinox

Have you read Nothing By Chance by Richard Bach? The "Have fun" you wrote had mixed results. Plus or Minus remains to be determined. Mike was up on time and finished his long arduous morning toilet so we could get on the road by 13 o'clock. Plan was that he would drive an hour and a half into the big city so we could attend a concert of the Phoenix Boys Choir at the Central Street Methodist Church for which I'd bought tickets for Preferred Seating. We were six miles along when the shit hit the fan.

Whap Clunk Judder-judder and his little X-90 coasted to a halt in the gore of i10x109's eastbound get-on ramp. Safe enough place to be actually; we had a clear lane to either side between us and the speeding traffic. Initial inspection showed the radiator was empty. This happened to him once before. Slow leak, no indication on the temperature gauge, engine seized; cost him a rebuild. This time the motor would crank but not start. He started to add water--here in the desert one always carries a gallon or three in the Desert Survival Kit--whilst I watched. Orange juice dribbled out from under the motor and it was not Tropicana. Looks like a burst hose. So much for getting to the church on time.

I called Paul for help. Could have called Triple-A I suppose but that goes on my record and I'd rather have a favour debit with a friend. Turned out two friends and a grandson. Paul wasn't home where he would have to go to get chains and towbar so he called Rick who lives closer to our breakdown and has a car-carrier trailer. In the meantime me & Mike are sitting in the hot car with traffic screaming past on both sides. We decided to visit the verge instead and stand in the breezy shade of a billboard.

A 22-wheeled milk wagon tanker stopped to offer aid; Mike thanked the driver, told him we had a rescue on the way, so we continued through the cans and bottles and assorted detritus of diverse drivers to the shady spot. Mike suggested we could pick up some trash whilst we waited to be rescued. At first, against my usual nature, I didn't want to; we didn't have any of the big orange AZDOT sacks I keep in my truck nor the official highway hazard vests with reflective silver stripes. But then I thought, what the hell, I do have one or two of those T-shirt grocery bags in Mikey's X-90 on the hook?my To-Go pack presently slung over my left shoulder (Never leave home without a To-Go pack.) so I could at least pick up the aluminium cans. There's maybe twenty-thirty cents worth within a couple hundred feet here. So I wandered around crushing cans and examining other things, wondering what an amber ICC marker light and a rusty front wheel bearing have in common with an item of soft luggage about the size of a laptop. Ooh! That item of soft luggage is sort of heavy. I wonder what's in there?

Before we could get too seriously involved with that the cavalry arrived. Two pickups, a flatbed trailer, various tow chains and tiedowns, and a husky grandson. In short order we had Mike's little X-90 winched onto the trailer and tied down with the cargo straps. I rode off with Paul back to The Cat Drag'd Inn and a well earned ale. Mike went with Rich and company to haul his car to the garage next door to where he lives. No ale for him. No concert for either of us.

A Salubrious Spring Equinox after all.

Bill The Caaakt

Be Well, Do Good, and Please Write.Pavlov's Other Cat

Love, ajo

I do not know what I may appear to the world; but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.
Sir Isaac Newton

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