Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Road Trip #4 -- Boulder, Colorado

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Boulder, Colorado for a visit with Tina and a stop at the Terrapin Care Station. I changed my travel plans to do some investigation into cannabis dermal patches. If you're interested here is the Alternet article from last week that led me to make this side trip. First-hand report to follow plus some other sacro-information I received just before departing Berkeley.

A forty-hour stopover here in Boulder before continuing on to my next layover in Shakopee, Minnesota.

Day 16 (Sept. 28th): 235 (trip to date: 1635)

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Road Trip #3: Rawlins, Wyoming

Google Maps is being cranky, click the minus sign in the lower right corner.

Rain, rain, rain and a couple of rainbows. Wish I could magically send all of this moisture out West to the snow pack in California. Today I got myself close enough to Colorado that I can cruise in tomorrow and get on with some personal medical investigation. Full report to follow. Right now it's time for back stretching and a hot shower followed by back exercises and opiates.

Day 15 (Sept. 27th): 525 miles (trip to date: 1400 miles)
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Friday, September 26, 2014

Road Trip #2 -- Elko, Nevada

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Day 14 (Sept. 26th): 500 miles (trip to date: 875 miles)

On the road again after two weeks near Mt. Shasta. A most interesting visit with a fire evacuation, a flood via melting glacier and finally the first rain of the season. I arrived to 90+ degrees and the barest Mt. Shasta anyone has seen in many years, hence the melting glaciers. But on my final day the rain clouds cleared to reveal snow down to the tree line. More white than locals have seen in three years. Hopefully, a beginning to a wet winter.

To avoid more interstate time, I meandered through the high desert of Eastern Oregon. Morning temperatures hovered in the high 30s with lots of tule fog in the low valleys. But tonight I find myself back on the interstate. Ah well, this too shall pass. Somewhere in Utah or perhaps Wyoming tomorrow evening before arriving in Colorado on Sunday.

On a slightly sour note. I have abandoned my plans to drive the Northern I-90 route to Minnesota. New medical information requires a stopover in Colorado. So I am once again traversing I-80, a highway I have driven too many times and had hoped to avoid. I will get to see my friend Tina in Boulder, so there are compensations.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

As Requested

Prior to hitting the road, several friends and regular blog readers requested that I include more photos from this trip. Including but not limited to the actual humans and near-humans I encounter along the way.

Today I begin to fulfill those requests. Above you will observe Midnight and I discussing keyboard access.

These humanoids are Gary & Cyndi Blevins, my friends who reside in Lake Shastina, California where I have spent the first two weeks of my journey in fire, glacial flaking and now heavenly rain. Here in California we never disparage precipitation.

Finally, from the wilds of Northern California the fourth member of the household, the latest creature to emerge from the wilds to adopt the Blevins -- meet Socks, the terror of local birds, bats and lizards.

The road trip heads East tomorrow with a small change in route, which will be explained at a future date.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

National Football League Fans

What does watching the National Football League say about you?

Maybe you should ask your wife or your daughter.

Domestic Violence is everyone's problem.


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Mother Nature Squared

First there was fire. Now the unmentionable combination of drought and [wait for it!] climate change or perhaps Global Warming has melted a glacier on Mt. Shasta. McCloud and Highway 89 are threatened, not to mention the low-lying islands of Tuvalu.

Either I need to get out of here before the earth opens and swallows us all or I had better warn the rest of the country -- I'm on my way and disaster seems to be following me and I don't mean Mother Nature is my facebook friend.

Road trip continues in four days.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Calling It What It is

I was listening to a program the other day about the Supreme Court of the United States. Specifically, the program was about the Hobby Lobby decision on health coverage and birth control.

The two commentators suggested that the Justices were out of touch with the reality of the world most of us live in. They cited the recent decision in striking down the Voting Rights Act as another example of this isolation the Justices have in their lives. The point was they were making sweeping legal decisions based on a perspective that does not reflect the reality of where most Americans live their lives.

My reaction was that here were two well educated, thoughtful, liberal commentators making excuses for the Justices. These are members of the U.S. Supreme Court, they don't live in isolation, they aren't being lulled into some sense of false security in the protected bowels of Washington D.C. Don't make excuses for them.

In the Hobby Lobby decision, as well as the Voting Rights evisceration; what we have are five republican, catholic males making the law of the land based on their religious  and political beliefs. The only thing worse than having a conservative, religious cabal deciding how we live our lives, which they are; the only thing worse is progressive voices letting them off with a reprimand.

These are not isolated men doing their best to interpret the constitution. Open your eyes, these are religiously motivated bigots. Five members of the U.S. Supreme Court are bigots. They are making laws that have far reaching effects on the lives of hundreds of millions of people based on religious bigotry. As such, they are in violation of their swore oaths before that god they so solemnly bend knee to. The words you are looking for are not isolated or privileged or out of touch. The word is bigotry in its rankist form. The lives of hundreds of millions of citizens are being infringed upon by Vatican bigots.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Social Media on the Internet

"A quiet party full of people I like." -Birrell Walsh

Funny how the millennials have already abandoned Facebook and Twitter for faster more immediate social media. What could possibly be faster than Instagramming a photo of your lunch, you ask?

Sorry, but if you have to ask, the swirl of social media has already passed you by. You probably still have a landline and watch TV on an actual television.

On the other hand, for us old slow folks; social media connects us 24/7/365 to people we no longer see in real life or at least not often enough. Old college friends, distant family, even ex-spouses are now with us whenever we power-up the iPad.

So, here is my continuing endorsement of social media in all it's forms, including even the absolutely latest app the kids won't explain to us. I like being in touch with people I knew 50 years ago. I enjoy "continuing the conversation" after the real world gathering is over.

My conservative friends love sending me outrageous distortions of the truth, I mean cogent well-researched arguments, for their insane positions. My liberal friends go crazy when I explain why they can't vote again for their "really good" congresswoman because even she is just another brick in the wall.

So despite facebook mining your posts for ad revenue and the NSA watching your every photo, comment and purchase -- I find social media to be a much bigger positive than it is an annoyance. If you don't agree, I'm going to unfriend you, right after I write a nasty comment on that last picture of your granddaughter and her new puppy.

p.s. the travelogue will recommence when I continue my road adventure in about ten days.

Monday, September 15, 2014


TUESDAY: I'm back at the house. Cats accounted for. But there's still a only partially contained fire about 7 miles away. Will keep the car loaded and watch for smoke plumes.

MONDAY: A fire broke out earlier today in Weed. Although my friends home is eight miles out of town, the fire is spreading out of control. The drought has made everything in the state more like tinder than foliage. I have evacuated North to Yreka and got one of the last motel rooms in town. I-5 the main North/South route up here has been shutdown in both directions, including the southbound lanes closed right where I am. Fingers and other appendages are crossed for the winds to die down and the fire to be stamped out.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Big Roadtrip!

Yes, I'm on the road again. It's been five years since my last great driving adventure. This time I have not given up all earthly roots but I will be moving about the country for several months. The first leg pictured above is by now familiar move, at least for regular readers. I have headed up to Mt. Shasta/Weed/Lake Shastina to visit my good friends and their animals. But this is just the first stop on a very long journey.

I will be making several visitations in the Midwest before venturing far South before the winter chill sets into the lands of my upbringing. After warming myself in sunny Florida, I will traverse the Gulf Coast, skim across the Southwest before traveling the spine of California and returning to my skyview apartment in Berkeley near year's end.

For blog purposes I will be going travelogue for much of the rest of this year. Not that politics, the economy, human nature and ephemera will not creep in as they always do.

Day 1 (Sept. 13): 275 miles
Day 2 thru 15: 0 miles (hanging out near Mt. Shasta)

Monday, September 08, 2014

You Want Us to Buy WHAT?

A few weeks ago a friend of mine posted on facebook that he had purchased a 64 oz. bottle of Welch's White Grape Juice, a product I have consumed in the past. When he got home he read the label, which stated: "100% grape juice plus added ingredients." We'll just let that complete lack of mathematical reasoning stand on its own merit.

That same evening I saw an ad on the boob tube that told me Panda Express was "for a limited time" offering Orange Chicken with Bacon. Again I have no arterial clogging comment.

The third and final part of this edible commerce infused rabbit hole came when I went to make dinner in the form of an avocado and sprouts wrap. There were no labels on the sprouts or the avocado I had bought at the farmer's market. But there was a list of ingredients on the "Garden Spinach Herb" wraps. Enriched flour and < 2% spinach seasoning. What exactly was in the "spinach seasoning" was not disclosed. But the green hue of the wraps came from a healthy blend of blue and yellow dyes.

All together now! USA! USA!  GMO! G! M! O!

We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming. The Mercury Theatre on the Air thanks you for listening.

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Around and Around the Social Media Cycle

Facebook took me to a TED talk, which bumped me to Alexa Meade's TED talk, which dumped me onto her website, which is a better place to watch her TED talk. Oh and that's her self portrait above, block off the righthand side and it becomes all the more stunning. Visit her site for artwork in milk, not to mention the egg on egg painting.