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Design and execution

It’s a tent for your vent! Mike and Jen have four cats and a dog. One of the cats was ill over the winter and she took to peeing down the floor heat/AC vents. The smell is noticeable. The cats were banished to the garage. Everyone’s miserable. I thought up some solutions. Then I went to bed and dreamt up the one solution I think will work. I built a mock up, got it approved, and then built the thing. Unfortunately, they did not tell me the cats had peed down all eleven vents. Oh well. The construction took a bit of time. The mosquitoes greeted me with a warm welcome. (I had to work in the garage.) But, done.  I am counting on the fact that the cats won’t just back up over the angle. They’ll find something easier. Right? I hope. Anyone else need a catproof vent?

Epilogue: Banned again! The vent covers worked. Hurrah! Now they pee on the floor, rug, and desk. Oh my!

Epilogue to the epilogue: It’s been a while – the cats are in and out. One peed in the planter in front of owner and guests. But! … not down the vents! Yay! There was a political coffee for state candidate for attorney general. Her campaign manager asked. I was credited with the (original) work. No one is asking for me to make any more.

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Amelia

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Back in 1994 before I knew what would happen, Jules named a dove who nested in her window box, Amelia. No ready water for plants, the window box had long been abandoned and was facing the street. We had plenty of pigeons. No doves. Amelia was fearless. She seemed to know the glass was protective against the humans on the other side. That little bird hatched clutch after clutch. Maybe it wasn’t the same bird, but, how do you argue with a ten-year old girl? I can only say that multiple births of one or more babies occurred across multiple years. My kids were careful to severely admonish me against scaring or annoying the birds. They stared back at me through the glass and never budged. She merely hatched another brood.

And then one day in August, 2006, the doves had a family reunion on our deck. The multiple generations gathered for that one time and quietly roosted anywhere and everywhere. There were more than twenty? Obviously, they remembered. I never saw them gather again. But on that one day, the doves that met reconnected with a memory of their birthplace. I was lucky enough to be there when it happened. It was an honor. I commend my kids for being so conscientious and caring. There are moments when you are proud of their kind and gentle souls.

Not that anyone will look, but, I posted this idea back in November 2011. Since I scanned my slides once more, I still think that this is a touching story. It bears repeating.


No harm, no foul

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This is an old slide. Okay? I didn’t bother to correct the color. It’s the content that counts. I did not let Jules choke Dave… for long. No kids were harmed in the making of this slide. Ha! One might question whether I should have intervened immediately? As I said no one was harmed. One might argue that there was subliminal psychological scarring. As you can see from my previous post they grew up and remain close.

To that I say, “Fake News!” Hey! No joke. The Newseum shop in Washington DC pulled their “Fake News” T shirts when they got complaints. Ummm? They made money for the museum. Oh! It’s a museum devoted to the “News!” Controversial? They kept the make America great hats. I suppose there is only so much one can do. Are we too numb anymore?

 


It’s about the bag?

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Paris fashion? Paris in the springtime – it was a song. “I love….” There are a few photos of me going back in my archives. It’s interesting to see me before I was gray haired. It’s fairly obvious that I handed over my camera to document myself. That grey Domke bag was actually used completely. You know? Like I actually wore it to death. There’s something to be said to wearing your jeans until they wear out instead of having been manufactured “worn out.” I wore my signature khaki pants and fleece jacket. Not much has changed except that now I use a black camera bag and have gray hair. Me worry? Nah!

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Big baby

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I must admit that I lack sympathy. I am in agreement. The big baby Trump blimp is quite appropriate. I’m passing this photo along. This is my means of telling the world. I am not proud of this man. He does not represent anything good. He has supporters. I do not understand how they can stand with him. Their time is limited and the end is near. The world is onto him now. We also have an electorate that gets it. The minority will not prevail when the wheel turns around once more. Thank you London, England.


Cast of characters

There is an odd mix of craft that is accepted for entry at the fair. It’s not just sheep. Brooms, wood turning, music, there were vendors of all sorts from source to finished products. You could get elaborate finished wool and fresh off the lamb fleece. There was an odd booth which had products made from old silverware. Nice. The craftsman cut off the handles of spoons and forks and made napkin rings. We were short (only got six last year) and able to get the four more we needed. This year he made a one fingered salute of a pickle fork. Yeah, it kind of reflects the mood of the country right now. Use your imagination; this one doesn’t have a picture to explain. Just hold up your middle finger and look in the mirror.


Shame

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From the NY Times. I’m frankly ashamed. We have sunk to the low of blaming infants and children for our immigration problems. We have separated children from their parents. We have made children political pawns. We have pulled out of the UN Human Rights Council. However you believe, it is not fair to blame and hold kids hostage. It’s a neat trick to blame the other side. The opposition is responsible when you (Donald Trump) have the power? You separated the families and have no plan to reunite them. You never had a plan. You don’t have one now. There is no evidence that any child has been in contact or reunited with their parent.

I will vote. And you will be gone. The sooner the better. Go live in a tent. You’re not living under a foil blanket. And to the rest of America: Whatever you believe whatever your politics, if you have a kid or know one, you can’t agree that kids should be treated this way. They are neither gang members or criminals. They are innocents.

PS – there are some (few) kids who have been reunited and others that were not taken from their parents. For the sake of clarity, I amend my post. Unlike our fearful leader, I do not try to tell lies. I’m not as low as he goes.


De Blasio Proposes Changes to New York’s Elite High Schools

  • New York Times

“In the face of growing pressure to tackle New York City’s widespread school segregation, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Saturday a proposal that would change how students are admitted to eight of the city’s specialized high schools, a group of highly sought-after institutions where students gain entry based on a single test.

Black and Hispanic students, who make up 67 percent of the public school population, are grossly underrepresented at the specialized high schools, which include Stuyvesant High School and the Bronx High School of Science.”

It’s another conundrum. The specialized schools are the best in the city? You can’t get a better education in any other high school? It’s a choice. You take a test and then if your score is good enough, you may choose to go. Or not. Level the playing field or dilute the talent. Even in a school like Stuyvesant you have a hierarchy. There was a student (whom I knew) who was number 708 in our class. Is it about status, or about education, or the ability to move with a faster crowd? Talent? Opportunity? Equality. A level playing field you say? I went to Stuyvesant. We were average guys (all male student body then). There was talent. Nobel? Ummm, no, I don’t think so. Better teachers? No! There was more incompetence because with seniority, a teacher could become assigned to Stuyvesant where the students were pre-selected and motivated self learners. Auto pilot! And in many cases we were – left adrift. We were once graded in English by writing our own grade on a piece of paper. Yes, you pick. like strawberries. I don’t know the answer. But, it ain’t easy. And politics should not be a measure of trying to make things better. There are quotas. They exist at Harvard. They existed at my NY state medical school. It’s unspoken. Legislation will always be circumvented. I count myself lucky that I survived education and benefited in spite of it all. Right place right time and darned lucky. At my last glance, Asians dominate the student body. When I attended (’60’s) it was Jewish. The conundrum is how to make a level playing field. Should we mandate that basketball teams have short players too? Or we should truly have overweight beauty contestants? The road to hell is paved with good intentions.


Fog

The funny thing is that less than half a mile away on US 1 it was bright and sunny. We went down to say “Hello” to the ocean. I haven’t really realized how much this means to me until now. Thanks.

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And there was fog. It’s like London without the crowds. Okay, so don’t fall down laughing. I can’t think of another analogy. But, it’s neat. I’m glad we went.

 


I don’t tweet

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I’m a democrat. Even if I weren’t I would be now. What’s this asshole doing? I am ashamed that he is president. I am ashamed that he has a forum. I am aghast that he has an avid following. The rest of the world shakes a collective finger (middle) at his antics. Enough is enough. Vote! Vote to impeach his sorry ass. I’m not very conflicted. You were an ass before you were elected. You are still. It might be better to remain quiet and let history disgrace you. Infamous? You bet. No more neutrality. You know where I stand. And, no, you don’t get to break the law!