No blog today.

This is not our house. This house is two blocks away, however. We had a storm last night, a big one. So we have no electricity and no Internet and this is being voice dictated to my phone, uploaded via cell towers.

A substantial crew was trying to cut this monster apart, and a substantial line of neighbors was watching them do so. Some had brought picnics. They said no one was hurt, which is good.

I will leave you to the weekend and I hope you all enjoy it. We will see what the country looks like on Sunday. I hope I have electricity by then.

Posted at 7:22 pm in Uncategorized |

83 responses to “No blog today.”

  1. Dorothy said on June 11, 2020 at 8:04 pm

    I am so glad that’s not your house, but I feel really bad for that family. That looks like a team of trees decided to jump out of their roots and stomp on that roof. One week ago our next door neighbor had some dead trees cut down, and one large branch that, when it was heavy with walnuts, hung too perilously close to his roof, so he had that one big branch cut off the tree.

    Fifty four weeks ago we had tornados come to town, and each time I drive through the neighborhood just about 1.5 miles from my house, I see the devastated trees there. They’re green now with new growth, but for the past year it was always still shocking to see what Mother Nature did to that part of town. The stripped, jagged branches pointed toward the sky – not to mention the houses all through there that were so assaulted. I never take storm warnings for granted anymore. The visual proof is enough to set you straight on that subject for the rest of your life.

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  2. Peter said on June 11, 2020 at 8:27 pm

    There but for the grace of God go my house….

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  3. Sherri said on June 11, 2020 at 8:46 pm

    If you’ve been hearing stories about scary things happening in Seattle with anarchists taking over, know that the police department has been spreading lies about what is happening.

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  4. David C said on June 11, 2020 at 8:59 pm

    Geez. If cops don’t want people to think they’re crazy assholes, maybe they need to stop doing crazy asshole shit.

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  5. beb said on June 11, 2020 at 9:25 pm

    I didn’t last night’s storm was that bad but you never know when a tree decides it’s time to go. Sad. It looks like not over is the roof a total loss but the second story looks like to sliding off the side.

    We have lived in our house for 30+ years and over that time have had more than our share of power-outages. Way more than our share. The fun (not ha ha funny} is that every time we lost power the people on the other side of the street kept theirs. Our side of the street must have been in one grid while theirs was on another. Late last night me noticed that the people across the street had, for the first time in 30+ years lost their power. While we continue to have ours. Pardon me while I laugh hysterically.

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  6. Mark P said on June 11, 2020 at 10:52 pm

    We live on top of a mountain with 12 homes. Our power comes up on a line strung up a high-tension power line right of way. We have been fortunate not to lose power many times, and usually not for long. The last time was a bear. It was out for hours, and not only did we not have lights or refrigeration to keep the food good, but we didn’t have water — we have a well.

    I might have mentioned before the time I flew into the Hunstville, Al, airport after a couple of weeks on travel. A huge, tornado-laden storm had trashed northeast Alabama. Everything at the airport was normal, but when I went outside I could hear the roar of the big diesel generators that were keeping it running. That was the last place there was working electricity until I reached the Georgia state line. I drove about 80 miles to the border, and it was like scenes from an end-of-the-world movie. No one was driving, no traffic lights were working, service stations were closed, fast food restaurants were closed. I probably didn’t pass 10 cars the whole way. But once I reached the Georgia line, everything was OK.

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  7. Heather said on June 11, 2020 at 11:01 pm

    Is that ONE tree???

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  8. Julie Robinson said on June 11, 2020 at 11:17 pm

    That storm came through here yesterday afternoon and it was pretty scary for half an hour, but the big winds ended up a little further north. My husband, downtown in his boarded up office, wasn’t aware of it at all.

    Our power stayed on thanks to buried wires, which is rare around here. Mark, you took me back to my childhood, when no power also meant no water. We’d pack a bag and go stay with my great aunt, who was a big dear and wonderfully fun. I wouldn’t want to live that way now. Give me city services and I’ll happily pay for them.

    As if in recompense today was the perfect combo of sun and low humidity. I groomed all my little pots and ran out of outdoor jobs, so just sat there and soaked it in.

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  9. Dexter Friend said on June 12, 2020 at 2:25 am

    Sandusky, Ohio had the roof ripped off a theater and then the walls collapsed. Marion, Ohio had severe storms that did tornado-like damage…as of Thursday afternoon the experts were still confused as to what happened.
    A mile east of us my friend’s neighborhood had huge hail and even stronger winds than us. His neighbor’s fence collapsed flat and blew a long ways away.
    I have had damage like nance’s neighbor has, twice. Once I was nearly killed when a huge maple tree fell atop our house and cracked it like an egg, which I detailed here when Brian’s house was flooded a few years ago. 5 years ago, my garage was destroyed by limbs from both a big oak and another fucking maple tree. On the first tree attack, we were stuck in a shitty motel for like 7 weeks. So best wishes to the neighbor of nance & Alan; it’s gonna take a lotta patience and time to fix that. We lost power but these days we have a crackerjack utility company force and we were down only an hour. Two advantages to living in Bryan, Ohio: quick power restoration and just about the best damn water in the world, right through the pipes.

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  10. ROGirl said on June 12, 2020 at 5:01 am

    Wow. That storm brought heavy rain in my area, but last week an enormous tree limb across the street came down over some power lines and knocked out electricity and my internet. They removed the tree and got the electricity back the same day, but I didn’t get my internet back for 2 days. I had to get an appointment for a technician to come out and restore the wires that run from the pole to my house.

    There had been plans for us to start returning to the office next week, then that was amended without a date for going back. Yesterday they decided that we will stay at home until July 6th.

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  11. ROGirl said on June 12, 2020 at 5:32 am

    This was allegedly written by an ex-cop. It’s worth the read.

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  12. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 12, 2020 at 7:28 am

    I kinda wondered about this at the time.

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  13. alex said on June 12, 2020 at 7:44 am

    One of the things I loved about my house when I bought it was the canopy of oaks surrounding it. Realizing the danger, we have been removing them as time and money allow. One left to go. We rented a lift last fall but soon realized the task was beyond our abilities, so we’re going to entrust that one to the professionals. It’s particularly close to the house, and near a point where a gas line runs through the ridge of the roof.

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  14. Connie said on June 12, 2020 at 7:55 am

    For close ups of the damage to that house and of the cleanup:

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  15. Colleen said on June 12, 2020 at 9:59 am

    Julie, I am with you on city services. I grew up in a house with a well and septic. NEVER. AGAIN.

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  16. LAMary said on June 12, 2020 at 10:17 am

    I had a huge Deodar cedar, dead from 5 years of drought, removed last fall. Very expensive to remove, but the guys who did it were amazing. We had a sizable neighborhood audience.

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  17. LAMary said on June 12, 2020 at 11:03 am

    I have a question for the group. I clicked on the link Connie gave for more pictures of the fallen tree. In the upper left side of the screen there was a live feed of the local news. I didn’t have the sound on, but from what I saw some guy was talking and looking sort of jolly and in the split screen a woman was laughing at what he said. The same thing with different people was on my TV local news. A guy, who actually isn’t very funny says something attempting to be funny and the woman laughs. Is this a requirement for local news? I notice it on all the local news stations (I am not loyal or a regular viewer of local television news) and I find it interesting that the guy always plays the “witty” role and the woman always is the one who laughs. Anyone else notice this? It grates because there is little wit or cleverness going on that warrants laughter.

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  18. 4dbirds said on June 12, 2020 at 11:38 am

    I read the comments in the last posting on JK Rowling. I found and read her open letter. Here is what I don’t understand. She says she fears if men can simply dress up as women they could then come into safe spaces for women and do them harm. There are safe spaces for women? I would like to find one of those.

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  19. Deborah said on June 12, 2020 at 11:48 am

    LA Mary, I hadn’t really noticed that phenom maybe because I don’t watch local news programs, but it doesn’t surprise me. My ex had a lousy sense of humor, he thought he was hilarious and would get mad at me if I didn’t laugh at his “jokes”. My husband now is funny and makes me laugh a lot.

    We have a couple of big trees on the lot of the condo building in Santa Fe. I worry about them, it can get very windy around here.

    My allergies have kicked in again after a couple of weeks of relief. This isn’t juniper allergy because I’ve been in Santa Fe most of the time, not Abiquiu. I’m taking Benadryl, medicine head.

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  20. Deborah said on June 12, 2020 at 11:53 am

    When we get phase 2 built out in Abiquiu it will have a well but we’ll have solar so won’t have to worry about power outages (as much).

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  21. Julie Robinson said on June 12, 2020 at 11:57 am

    Remember Erma Bombeck’s book The Grass is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank? Yup, we also had a septic tank, as well as LP gas. My folks would generally wait until too late to get the one emptied and the other filled. Good times.

    We also didn’t have trash pickup, so we burned. Tin cans were saved for a trip to the dump, which cost money, so there were always bags of them in the garage.

    Then there was snow removal, or lack thereof. The county roads snowed in quickly and were plowed infrequently. Our very long driveway (gravel, natch) had to be plowed out with a scoop attached to a tractor, which had to be borrowed from the brother.

    You couldn’t pay me to move back to the country.

    The follow up interviews with Jo Rowling have suggested she is frightened of transgender women coming into locker rooms, and that she had sexual trauma in her childhood. I’m sorry about that and hope she is in therapy. She’s rich enough to have a private gym of her own. The comments made by Dan Radcliffe and Emma Watson as they distance themselves from her have been profound and eloquent.

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  22. Deborah said on June 12, 2020 at 12:11 pm

    This story doesn’t put Melania in avery good light

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  23. Sherri said on June 12, 2020 at 12:20 pm

    4dbirds@18, depending on how conservative or liberal the person wanting to exclude trans women is, the safe spaces range from bathrooms and prisons to sports. The bathroom bills that pop up are the scare-mongering end, but the bills that exclude trans women from competing in sports are the same spectrum.

    There is an assumption at the core of all of them that trans women aren’t women, that they are men who are just pretending to be women for some advantage. If you actually know anyone who is trans, you recognize that this is bullshit, but that hasn’t stopped even people who normally think of themselves as quite liberal from falling for it.

    I know someone who is quite passionate about civil liberties, but is also a huge TERF. He thinks it’s about protecting women’s rights.

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  24. LAMary said on June 12, 2020 at 12:59 pm

    I know one trans person and there is no way the motive for going trans has anything to do with bothering/attacking/having an advantage over women. It’s about knowing since he was about four years old that he was more comfortable dressed as a female. This guy, who’s in his twenties, was trying on his sister’s dresses when he was in preschool.

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  25. 4dbirds said on June 12, 2020 at 1:01 pm

    I was only commenting on JK Rowling’s perception that there are safe spaces for women. If someone wants to invade a bathroom, a locker room or work as a prison guard to abuse women, they will find a way. I found her argument especially weak in this regard.

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  26. Sherri said on June 12, 2020 at 1:06 pm

    The trans woman I know the best is Christina Kahrl, who is a baseball writer for ESPN. I knew her before she transitioned, but obviously, transitioned to a woman in a male-dominated field is hardly an advantage.

    I’ve never met Christina in person, but I’ve known her online for over 25 years. We just recently had a chat about the differences living life as a woman vs as a man (she transitioned as an adult.)

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  27. 4dbirds said on June 12, 2020 at 1:13 pm

    25 years ago, there was petition at work, to not allow a certain person to use the women’s bathroom. When the organizer of the petition came to me and asked if I would sign, I didn’t know what she was talking about. That’s how naive I was at the time about such things. Then when she made known to me who it was, I was surprised because I never would have guessed. I told her no, I wouldn’t sign because the focus of the petition was a lovely person and I’d shared the bathroom a few times with her and never had a problem. I never heard what became of that petition as I left that company a year later.

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  28. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 12, 2020 at 1:26 pm

    Friends, I submitted my 60 days notice at the congregation where I serve as pastor. There’s just enough real world overlap here I thought I’d put it out there officially. My wife and I were trying to find an apartment or condo last week for her to live in as she goes back and forth to Indy caring for her 91 year old ailing but living “independently” father, and I was still out and around in ministry work, when it occurred to me: this is stupid. And with Dwight Schrute, I realized the wisdom of saying “Whenever I’m about to do something, I think, “Would an idiot do that?” And if they would, I do not do that thing.”

    So I’m stepping out of parish ministry. There are other complicating factors that make this the least complicated solution (coughTrumpianscough), but for my family, this is the best answer. Or as Buzz said, “Bonnie will be okay.”

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  29. Sherri said on June 12, 2020 at 1:29 pm

    I understand that Rowling has trauma from abuse, as do other people. But claiming a right to a safe space from trans women because of that abuse seems little different to me than claiming a right to a safe space from black people because you were a victim of a crime by a black person. We rightly don’t allow the latter, nor should we allow the former.

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  30. nancy said on June 12, 2020 at 2:22 pm

    The late Maggie Jochild had some things to say about trans women on this very blog, five years ago.

    Scroll down to the comments.

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  31. alex said on June 12, 2020 at 3:18 pm

    Part of the reason some cannot empathize with or understand LGBT people is because they cannot empathize with or understand anyone whose motivations aren’t exactly like their own, especially when their own are purely selfish and devoid of altruism or are perhaps twisted by some sort of pathology. (See Donald Trump.)

    For instance, I’ve known controlling and jealous men who think that gay men are faking it and it’s all a ruse to steal their women. Why else would a man want to be friends with a woman if he wasn’t getting sex out of it? A man who would suffer talking about art and fashion and books or anything women are interested in couldn’t possibly be doing it without a payoff. I’ve been accused a few times by some toxic males.

    Disappointed in J.K. Rowling. Not that I was a big fan of her books or anything, but what a stupid hill to die on.

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  32. Deborah said on June 12, 2020 at 3:21 pm

    Forgive me if I’ve already mentioned this here, but a couple of weeks ago on a drive out to Abiquiu I listened on NPR to a segment of Ted Radio, called “The Biology of Sex”. It was fascinating. There is soooo much we don’t know because we’re steeped in our own societal bubbles. I tried getting a link to it, but ran into some issues, but you can Google it. Well worth the listen.

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  33. Suzanne said on June 12, 2020 at 3:34 pm

    Here is the TED program

    I heard part of it. There was something about certain people’s bodies not reacting well with the hormones that their bodies produce to match their biological sex, like a male whose body reacts well to estrogen but not testosterone. Or something like that. I only heard bits and pieces. But it was interesting.

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  34. Deborah said on June 12, 2020 at 4:34 pm

    Suzanne, there were a number of segments, one was about an intersex person who lives as a woman, has all of her life, has gone through hell and back. There was a segment interviewing a neurologist who studies brains related to sex and the last segment was about a trans woman scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratories doing research on epi-genetics. There was other information in there too about X and Y chromosomes. It was all very interesting.

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  35. Sherri said on June 12, 2020 at 5:04 pm

    I think this tweet is relevant.

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  36. Julie Robinson said on June 12, 2020 at 5:17 pm

    Jefftmmo, as you would say to anyone of us, may grace and peace go with you. We await your next chapter.

    I hope what I said about JK Rowling wasn’t construed by anyone as supportive of her vile comments. We have a young man in our church who is trans, and chose to announce it in front of the congregation. He received a standing ovation and was bowled over by everyone who wanted to hug him. There were a few who objected, but when aren’t there?

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  37. LAMary said on June 12, 2020 at 5:35 pm

    I’ve mentioned here a brother of mine who recently went through chemo and radiation for cancer of the esophagus. This brother, one of four, is the closest to my age. He’s eight years older than I am. He was very helpful to me when my father died and I was broke and homeless at 19. He helped me get through college and he’s been very generous to my sons. He never married and the only woman he’s been involved with was in high school. For years I’ve assumed he’s either asexual or gay. He’s also very right wing and ridiculously unwilling to do anything that is considered immoral or illegal. He would not accept any THC or CBD meds while he was going through cancer treatment and was losing weight too quickly for his health. Even though he lives in Colorado where weed is legal for medicinal and recreational reasons he still worried that it was illegal federally and was genuinely concerned that he would be arrested. His doctor couldn’t change his mind, I couldn’t, his nephew the oncologist couldn’t. He would get very angry at the suggestion. We were all criminals. He’s wound that tightly. In the time when he was in the worst condition he frequently mentioned a “friend” who had been killed in a car crash. My brother is a dry alcoholic but he kept this guys favorite wine in the house for his visits. The friend helped out with handyman type things and seemed to be around the house a lot from the stories my brother told. I think that if I asked my brother flat out if he was gay he would be so angry it could end our relationship. I’ve talked to my oncologist nephew about it since he speaks to him often and he agrees. We both find this heartbreaking. The life my brother could have had if he just could feel free to be himself would have been much happier. He missed so much.

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  38. Jim said on June 12, 2020 at 6:34 pm

    I watched and mostly enjoyed Jason Segal’s surreal show Dispatches from Elsewhere this Spring. He and Sally Field were very good, but the real star was Eve Lindley, a trans actress and model. She was amazing. The really cool thing was that she is trans in the show, and her character and Segal’s are a romantic pair.

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  39. Sherri said on June 12, 2020 at 7:31 pm

    A federal judge has issued a TRO against the Seattle PD.

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  40. Sherri said on June 13, 2020 at 12:12 am

    Fox Propaganda, complete with Photoshopped images!

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  41. beb said on June 13, 2020 at 3:13 am

    I finally had to goggle TERF. I still have no idea what that means. Somebody hates somebody because they hate somebody

    Without knowing what any of it means, I agree with Alex that this is not a hill some should consider dying on.

    ROgirl’s link @11 Confessions of a bastard cop is well worth the read. The tl;dr is that all cops are rotten apples. They are trained that why and the rot goes all the way to the top so there is no way to reform a police department.

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  42. David C said on June 13, 2020 at 12:49 pm

    Times are strange when I’m having a just delightful day having a Twitter argument on the metric system versus customary units. I think we know we’re just trolling each other but it’s pleasant trolling and it’s making me so happy.

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  43. Deborah said on June 13, 2020 at 2:09 pm

    Let me guess David C, you’re on the metric side? I’ve had to do design projects using the metric system and found it’s much easier to do. The only problem I had was when I had to convert, I don’t remember why I had to convert, it was probably to facilitate my own visualization because customary units are so ingrained.

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  44. Deborah said on June 13, 2020 at 2:36 pm

    This is just vile

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  45. David C said on June 13, 2020 at 4:47 pm

    I’m on the side of customary units, Deborah. I use metric at work but for usefulness customary units beats metric. They’re human scale. A foot is about as long as my foot. If I want a rough measurement of something all I need to do is go heal to toe and I have it. An inch is about the length of the second joint of my finger. A meter is 1 ten millionth of what they thought the distance between the North Pole and the equator was. It’s handy if you want to quickly know what they thought that distance was but on a human scale it’s worthless. It is neat that with metric you just have to move the decimal place but in reality you don’t have to do that very often. For small things you use mm for medium things you use m and for distances you use km. I haven’t had to care what the distance between Chicago and Springfield is in meters since school. It’s the same with customary. Inches for small stuff, feet for medium stuff, and miles for distance. You seldom have to convert between them except in school. Temperature is the biggest hot mess in metric. The increments are too large. And anyway, US customary units are now all derived from metric measurements. So we have actually converted to metric. It’s just a soft conversion that allows people to use units they’re comfortable with.

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  46. Jim said on June 13, 2020 at 5:04 pm

    Agree with David C for folks in the US who grew up with English measurements. However, if you start learning with metric there are intermediate units we seldom teach much here in school that work the same way.

    The main advantage for metric is in science and math. Scientific notation (similar) allows for easy conversion between measurements on vastly different scales, and the formulas that work in all theoretical math and science are far easier in metric.

    Here is how bizarre our US “transition” has been. In around 1984 we lived on Kensington Blvd. and owned a Chevy Chevette. You laugh, but it was a much better car than my Chevy Vega.

    Battery died dead in a huge cold snap and snowstorm. Hitched a ride To Hires, and bought a battery to replace it. In the midst of that nightmare in the cold under the hood was when I learned that Chevrolet had made the mounts with some parts in English measurement, and some in metric. Guesswho only had English tools?

    I was not thrilled, even though could use that as a teachable moment in later math classes.

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  47. susan said on June 13, 2020 at 5:04 pm

    David @45 –
    What does this mean: And anyway, US customary units are now all derived from metric measurements.

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  48. beb said on June 13, 2020 at 5:11 pm

    Before I retired I was required to take a test to become a water plant operator, which was silly because I was not a water plant operator or would ever be one (different departments) Part of the test required all sorts of conversions. How many pounds of this to add to how many million cubic feet of water, to create a concentration of parts per million. For that you need to know how many gallons in a cubic foot and them how many pounds in a gallon. Whereas in the metric system one cubic meter weights one metric tonne. It would be all so much simpler.

    That said, like Deborah on day to day things I think in “Imperial” units because I am so much more used to them.

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  49. Jakash said on June 13, 2020 at 5:52 pm

    Good luck, Jeff (tmmo) @ 28. I’ll second Julie’s remark. Uh, I’m slow on the uptake — does this mean you’re moving to Indianapolis?

    Jim @ 46: “… owned a Chevy Chevette. You laugh, but it was a much better car than my Chevy Vega.”

    We have a medalist in the “damning with faint praise” competition! Having gone from a Pinto to a Pontiac T 1000 (essentially a Chevette with a red arrowhead on the grille,) you ain’t wrong, however. 😉

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  50. Deborah said on June 13, 2020 at 5:56 pm

    Huh, interesting David C. I found using the metric system much easier when it came to drawing in scale. It’s much easier to calculate. 1” equals a foot scale, is so much harder for me to calculate. Also anyone who has given birth knows that 4cm dilation of the cervix equals 4 fingertips wide. It’s similar to your foot and Second joint of a finger inch reference.

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  51. Jenny Derringer said on June 13, 2020 at 6:06 pm

    i’m so glad you got your big oak tree cut down prior to this.

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  52. Deborah said on June 13, 2020 at 6:35 pm

    Renaming the Edmund Pettus bridge after John Lewis is totally something I will get behind

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  53. Jakash said on June 13, 2020 at 7:39 pm

    A declining empire, in two headlines:

    “L. A. schools will return grenade launchers, but keep rifles, armored vehicle.”

    “‘I am a scavenger.’: The desperate things teachers do to get the classroom supplies they need.”

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  54. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 13, 2020 at 9:02 pm

    Jakash, not moving to Indy, but spending some quality time shuttling between here (east of Columbus, OH) and both Indy & Valparaiso in Indiana. Selling a house after cleaning 57 years of life out of it, and caring for a father-in-law & mother respectively.

    We are fortunate; my wife has both the insurance coverage, and the job that can be done 92% from home/online. Which can mean online from her dad’s home, too. Meanwhile, our son’s student teaching in the fall is still in limbo . . . sandwich generation for sure!

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  55. beb said on June 14, 2020 at 1:27 am

    WE had a Chevette, two actually since the first was totally in an accident. I thought it was a nice car, didn’t do a lot of repairs so never ran into that English / metric tools problem. The worst was that windshield was not properly sealed when it was made and had a lot of water get in during storms. Had a Vega, too, didn;t have a problem with it but then I heard that the engines died around 50,000 miles so when I got to around 48,000 I traded it in for the Chevette.

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  56. Sherri said on June 14, 2020 at 1:44 am

    So some more SWAT officers have resigned from their SWAT duties in some town in Florida, which raises the question for me, how many SWAT officers do we need, anyway? Does every single town need SWAT, and why is SWAT used to serve search warrants, anyway? (Serving search warrants is about 80% of what SWAT is used for.)

    I’ve been reflecting on a police ride along I once did. More on that tomorrow.

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  57. Connie said on June 14, 2020 at 6:08 am

    I don’t remember any major problems with my Chevette, the first car I ever boughr now. I replaced it with a Pontiac 6000, the loudest car I have ever owned.

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  58. Connie said on June 14, 2020 at 6:09 am

    Bought new.

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  59. LAMary said on June 14, 2020 at 11:08 am

    Darryl Gates, the former chief of police here in LA took credit for the idea of SWAT teams until they were criticized and then he denied it. It was while he was chief here that LA got the first SWAT teams and the LAPD became very militaristic. Darryl Gates also thought that community policing was a big mistake and that police officers should not engage with the community. He had a lot to do with Rodney King getting beaten and with the post acquittal riots in 1992. Tom Bradley was our mayor at the time and Gates refused to speak to him. He resigned/retired/was told to get the hell out of the office after the riots. When his successor was leaving office Darryl applied for his old job and assumed the city would jump at the chance but he was wrong.

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  60. Sherri said on June 14, 2020 at 2:46 pm

    So, my ride along.

    There was nothing dramatic about my ride along, but I think it’s reflective of several issues relevant to the discussion about policing today.

    In around 2002 or 2003, as part of a community leadership program in Mountain View, I did a ride along with a MVPD officer. Most of the ride along was consumed by one minor traffic stop and its ramifications.

    When I met him at the station, the first thing we did was head over to the high school. He set up near a 4 way stop during morning drop off, and within minutes, saw someone fail to come to a complete stop making a right turn. He turned on the lights, followed the car to the high school, where the car stopped, the passenger got out (she was the student) and was allowed to go into the school.

    The mom driver remained in the car. She was Chinese, still wearing a robe. The officer explained, in English, why he pulled her over, and asked for her license and registration. She didn’t have her license with her. She didn’t speak much English, and refused to sign the traffic citation.

    Soon multiple police cars arrived, not because my officer had summoned them, but because he had made a stop and they had nothing going on. He did summon the sergeant when he was getting nowhere with the driver, who adamantly refused to sign anything. The officer kept trying to explain that it wasn’t an admission of guilt, but she was having no part of it.

    All of the officers were calm, but frustrated. They believed the woman understood more English than she demonstrated, and was just being uncooperative. Eventually, she was allowed to drive home with my officer following her, to retrieve her license.

    But she still wouldn’t sign anything. I don’t know why they needed her to sign the citation, but they absolutely required her signature. The end result was that this woman was arrested, out in the back of the police car, taken down to the police station, where she would be fingerprinted and processed.

    All for rolling through a right hand turn.

    Sure, if she had just signed, it might not have been a big deal. But how was she, an immigrant, to know that? And I well know that affluent suburban cities really get upset about drivers near schools, but do we really need armed force to enforce traffic safety near schools? (An aside – maybe if we designed suburban school campuses so that they were more pedestrian and bike friendly and less car friendly, that might make more of a difference…)

    A really minor situation escalated not because police officers behaved badly, but because the system was designed to escalate inappropriately, but in ways invisible to dominate culture. That never would have happened to me, had I been the driver. I would have understood my rights, and even had I refused to sign, the officer would have been more likely to back down to me rather than take a upper middle class white woman to the station for booking. He would have known it wasn’t worth the trouble, that I would have access to lawyers, likely access to higher ups in his department, council members, ability to make my voice heard in various ways.

    Much of this didn’t occur to me at the time. At the time, I was impressed by how calm and polite the officers remained. It’s only as I’ve learned more and listened more and began to realize what the world looks like from different perspectives that I can rethink this experience.

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  61. Suzanne said on June 14, 2020 at 3:23 pm

    This is my cop story. My husband & I were on the interstate, probably 30 years ago, driving home from a football game in Bloomington (Go Hoosiers!) I was driving, husband asleep in the passenger seat. I saw a state trooper in front of me and decided to pass him. I hesitated because it seemed like a bad idea, but I had my cruise control set for the speed limit so I didn’t think there would be an issue. There was. He turned on his lights and pulled us over. When he asked me if I knew why I’d been stopped, I answered honestly that I did not. He told me I was speeding. I said that I certainly was not because I had the cruise control set at the speed limit. He then asked me if I had thought it was a good idea to pass a fully marked State Police cruiser. I replied that I did not think there would be an issue because I had my cruise control set AT THE SPEED LIMIT, no higher. I said I absolutely was going the speed limit.
    He gave me a ticket with instructions to get the speedometer checked within 7 days, and if it was off, the ticket would be dismissed.
    I did get the speedometer checked, it was about 5 miles off, the ticket was dismissed, speedometer fixed, and all was well. Had I been anything but white or had my husband not been with me, I truly believe the outcome would have been much different.
    I also have never passed a fully marked State Police cruise since then on the highway, no matter how slow it is going.

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  62. Deborah said on June 14, 2020 at 4:22 pm

    This happened in my former life, early one morning before work our dog started yelping painfully, she had broken her leg somehow, playing around on the swingset we had in the backyard. It fell on me to take the dog to the vet, my husband (ex now) said it was very important that he get to work. I had an MG and I had a hard time getting the dog in, she immediately crawled down into the area where your legs go when in the passenger seat. We went to the vet, got her fixed up with a cast. Then I was in a big hurry to get her back home so I could get to work. I didn’t realize I was speeding (if I was) until I was stopped by a cop. This guy was rude as could be. When I rolled down my window and handed him my driver’s license he leaned down and yelled at me, 6″ from my face, with spittle flying and bad breath too. The poor dog was whimpering in her hiding place. In the end he didn’t give me a ticket but I was rattled. I was astounded how unpleasant the guy was, I think that was the first time I was ever stopped by a cop, which is probably why he ended up not giving me a ticket.

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  63. Jeff Borden said on June 14, 2020 at 6:05 pm

    Two quick things:

    My buddy Doug in Charlotte used to tell women in bars he “drove a ‘Vette.” Then he added, “A Chevette.” It always made me laugh.

    Meanwhile, the humor-deprived and pop culturally clueless goofs at Fucks News get played again courtesy of “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.” Too funny.

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  64. Deborah said on June 14, 2020 at 7:08 pm

    After a trip out to Abiquiu, LB and I stopped at a grocery store back in Santa Fe to buy provisions. I don’t like going to this particular store even though it’s the closest one to us. Sure enough, there were a number of men shopping there wearing no masks. Every other place I shop, everyone, and I mean everyone wears masks. All of these guys at that grocery store were white, between the ages of 35 and 55 I’d guess, and they were either shopping alone or with a family and the rest of the family wore masks. I swear I’m not ever shopping there again.

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  65. David C said on June 14, 2020 at 9:19 pm

    I had the same sort of experience going into our local hardware store. I was the only one with a mask. I don’t know if it was just me feeling self-conscious or if it was real. I just don’t remember getting so many side-eyes and sneers. I’m not going back there. Even Menard’s is better than that. All the employees wear masks and most of the customers do to. John Menard is one of the biggest right wing fucks in Wisconsin and he gets it. I don’t know why it’s this hard.

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  66. beb said on June 15, 2020 at 4:01 am

    Good Ol’ Monty Python. It’s hard to express how brilliant they are. I’m sure Fox News didn’t around to reading the bit about “some watery tart” was no way to select a ruler.

    Sherri @56 mentioned the officers of a SWAT team resigning from the team (but not the force) because of the criticism of the town’s vice mayor. The article I read said this was a small town, which only raises the question of why does a small town need a SWAT team.

    Detroit’s ’67 riots were started by a sort of proto-SWAT team. And we’ve had people (a little girl) killed by SWAT teams breaking into the wrong house. After a time it makes you wonder why we need a squad like that. No city, not even Detroit is that violent.

    I wonder if Nancy has her power back yet. I would have thought she would have dropped in longest to say so. I thought DTE (electric) had all the power restored by now.

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  67. David C said on June 15, 2020 at 6:09 am

    Oh, Grand Rapids. Don’t ever change. Maybe I should say, Grand Rapids you’ll never change.

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  68. Julie Robinson said on June 15, 2020 at 9:09 am

    The Menard’s here in the Fort is requiring masks, and if you don’t have one, step over to the counter where they will sell you one for $1. They are also not allowing anyone under 16. Costco is also requiring masks, but they got all kinds of blowback. Menard’s, not any that I know of. Menard’s is run by a right winger, Costco has not been politically active but has great employee wages and benefits. I find all this curious.

    Meijer is not requiring masks in Indiana. I went to one and maybe 25% were wearing them, so I contacted the store and asked them to consider requiring masks. I pointed out that other local stores were. Their response was corporate nothingness–that masks were required in Michigan and in other states they were requesting customers wear them. Then they asked how likely I was to shop there again, 1-10. I told them 1, cold day in hell. So we went back to Costco and Kroger pickup, with hubby stopping at Aldi on the way home for a little produce here and there.

    And now with the new week, states that were reopening are having to retrench because of a rise in cases. I think the pertinent expression is No Shit, Sherlock.

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  69. Deborah said on June 15, 2020 at 9:27 am

    This is an interesting Twitter thread by a defense attorney about how cops play the system for overtime pay and other scams that end up hogging municipal budgets

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  70. basset said on June 15, 2020 at 9:38 am

    “Newsrooms are in revolt. The bosses are in their country houses.”

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  71. Sherri said on June 15, 2020 at 12:34 pm

    SCOTUS just ruled 6-3 to outlaw employment discrimination against LGBTQ people! Even transgender! Gorsuch and Roberts joined the liberals.

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  72. Suzanne said on June 15, 2020 at 12:41 pm

    Last time I shopped at Meijer was a couple of weeks ago on a Sunday afternoon and there few people there so I wasn’t concerned that there weren’t that many wearing masks. My sister says she won’t shop there anymore because they don’t require masks and the one near her is frequented by Amish, who I never see wearing masks. Amish in my area are not now, and never have, followed guidelines from everything I hear.
    I am disgusted with the number of people who refuse to wear masks.

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  73. Sherri said on June 15, 2020 at 1:16 pm

    It’s just unreal to me to hear from the rest of you the resistance to masks in your areas. When I go to any of the grocery stores here, almost everyone is wearing a mask. I can usually count on one hand the number of people not wearing masks. The only social distancing measure I don’t see routinely followed in grocery stores are the one way aisles some stores set up. People don’t seem to grasp that. But lines to check out are distanced, stores that need to limit the number of people in the store at once don’t seem to have any problem with people complaining about lining up to get in, and when I go on walks outdoors, while people don’t wear masks then, everybody gives each other space.

    But then, we’re also just barely open. Most restaurants are still only doing takeout, because the restrictions on opening make it not worth opening for sit down dining. Salons can open at 25% capacity. Retail is open at limited capacity, limited time in store.

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  74. Sherri said on June 15, 2020 at 1:39 pm

    The FDA has pulled the emergency use authorization for Bunker Baby’s favorite drug.

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  75. jcburns said on June 15, 2020 at 2:54 pm

    Just got back from a visit to a Target in midtown/little 5 points Atlanta. Pretty good mixture of class, race, gender in early afternoon on a Monday.

    Impressive % of mask usage, maybe 4-6 guys without masks, maybe 4 women without masks, all employees masked. A handful of people had the unhelpful mask down on your chin configuration. Not bad. As we left one young woman staggered out of the staircase without a mask, but she was covered head to toe in tattoos, so…ok?

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  76. Deborah said on June 15, 2020 at 3:10 pm

    I haven’t had a haircut since Feb 25th, I normally go every 6 weeks or so and I have no idea when I will be able to get one, not just because of the virus but because I haven’t found a place I like in NM and I’m probably going to be here until mid Sept. My hair looks super shaggy, especially around my neckline, I hate it.

    Really, Santa Fe is mostly good about mask wearing, just that one grocery store. It took me a number of visits to stores before I figured out the oneway arrows on aisles, duh. Most of the stores around here no longer have those anymore for some reason, they still mark off 6′ apart spaced tape though. Even though a lot of people wear masks around here, I’ve noticed a lot of people don’t cover their nose with them, maybe they just droop momentarily but it drives me crazy when I see it.

    I’ve gotten so used to lining up outside of stores, I don’t even give it a second thought. The lines usually go pretty fast. If I had to wait in the rain or hot sun I’d be unhappy, but most places that don’t have portales usually have some sort of temporary shade devices set up. This is New Mexico after all and the sun can be intense, and portales are a traditional feature on most buildings in NM for just that reason.

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  77. susan said on June 15, 2020 at 3:40 pm

    Deborah @76 – Those cretins who wear their face masks like that probably wear their underwear that way, too.

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  78. Dorothy said on June 15, 2020 at 4:10 pm

    Here in Dayton we always wear a mask at Kroger or Meijer when we grocery shop. I am unsure the percentage of wearers vs. non-wearers, but I’m guessing it might be 50/50. A cashier at my Kroger admired my mask I made with my Democrat fabric, so I made one for her and dropped it off in a zipped baggie for her. She was delighted! I had a haircut a week after the salons reopened. I go to a Super Cuts down the street from my office. It’s a requirement to wear a mask and of course the stylists wear them. I’ll be ready for another cut in 2 or 3 weeks as I wear my hair really short, and frequent cuts are a habit. When we pick up take out food, we wear a mask. We bought wood for our back deck project at Menard’s, and they require masks as you walk in. However, I did see several people in the store who must have removed their masks after they walked past the employee who checks guests as they walk in. There’s always going to be those rebels who think they ‘got one over’ on management by bypassing the rules.

    If someone feels claustrophobic or has asthma and the mask makes their breathing difficult, I’m all about supporting that. They should not wear one. But honestly I think the out and out defiance is just a big “F you” from those who refuse to wear one. I find them rude, ignorant, selfish and willfully ignoring facts. It’s such a small thing to do with a very large impact on virus transmission. The rate of infection in this country and the subsequent deaths is just going to be a constant until a vaccine is developed. And guess who’s going to push their way to the front of the line to get the vaccine?

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  79. Julie Robinson said on June 15, 2020 at 4:42 pm

    Yes, it is an F you, and I was giving all the maskless shoppers F you’s with my eyes, but somehow they didn’t get it.

    I hadn’t had a haircut since before Christmas; had trimmed my bangs but was going to get one in March after we came home from Orlando, and of course didn’t. This weekend I watched a couple of videos and we did his & her haircuts. They are…acceptable. Mine’s a little shorter than I wanted, but who cares, no one except family is seeing me anyway. If I keep it short like this my gray will be grown all the way out soon.

    Good news from the Supremes today for once.

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  80. Sherri said on June 15, 2020 at 4:56 pm

    I like this reaction to the SCOTUS ruling.

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  81. Mark P said on June 15, 2020 at 5:16 pm

    I’ve mentioned about mask wearing here in Rome, Ga. Essentially no one wears a mask. I would estimate at Walmart it’s under 10%. Lowe’s is no better. Employees are supposed to wear masks, and most do. Many, however, don’t cover their nose and I often see them with the mask hanging from one ear.

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  82. Sherri said on June 15, 2020 at 5:40 pm

    In the “you never know where you’re making an impact” category:

    Last week, I was contacted out of the blue by a woman I met once at a powerlifting meet. We had become FB friends after that, and I remembered her because she was originally from TN, but we’ve had no interaction since that first encounter.

    She sent me a message, saying she knew from FB that I was involved with civil rights and local politics, and that she wanted to learn more about police issues in light of George Floyd. I sent her a few resources, and now she’s contacting her local officials and state reps about changing things! This was not someone whose FB page was full of politics.

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  83. David C said on June 15, 2020 at 6:29 pm

    We got our hair cut too. I was a little reluctant until I read about the two hairdressers in Missouri who tested positive and none of their 140 clients tested positive. They and their customers were required to wear masks. After we read that we felt comfortable enough to go. I imagine there are quite a few things that could be done safely with proper precautions. Without widespread testing and contact tracing we’ll likely never know.

    That’s really great, Sherri. I tend to keep my politics down low. Even though Oshkosh is a blue oasis in a read area, I don’t feel comfortable dealing with crazies.

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