Tuesday, March 30, 2021

The Cheapest Vacation – Reflexology

The unraveling of stress I feel after a session of reflexology is intense and can last for a few days.

I sit in the chair and drift into a state of metaphysical concepts as my feet are poked and prodded.

I know I will be useless for productivity after such a session.

I tip about 40% because the immigrant doing the work likely has a tough life and ultimately the price is low compared to the benefit I immediately receive.

I am lucky to have found this ace in the hole for when serious relaxation is needed.

Monday, March 29, 2021

Mocking West Bank Sanctimony

“Hashoter Hatov” or “The Good Cop” is an Israeli situation comedy about a fictional police station. The humor is slapstick and sometimes puerile, but surprising, if not downright bizarre.

The main character, a police officer named Dani, is played by Yuval Semo, a deadpanning everyman who is never alarmed about what his job brings him.

In one episode, one of Dani’s comrades, a Palestinian policeman, is kicked in the head by a donkey and awakes to believe he is Jewish and a religious Zionist living in a settlement in the West Bank. He is so overbearing and sanctimonious Dani buys a donkey to kick him in the head again so he doesn’t have to suffer such pompous righteousness.  

In another episode, the worst possible assignment for a policeman is explained as the Jewish enclave in Hebron, protecting the Jewish settlers in the extremist settlement of Kiryat Arba.

I admit I am not a frequent viewer of Israeli television, but I am pleasantly surprised to see the settlement enterprise openly mocked in popular culture.

Keep the jokes flowing!

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Saturday, March 27, 2021

The Kid Is Growing Food

The kid is interested in sustainability, self-sufficiency and growing food, so much so he attended a community lecture on the subject. 

As it is still March and cold he is starting his plants in his room. I remember buying the seeds but have forgotten what types of vegetables they are. 

I salute his initiative!


Friday, March 26, 2021

This Is My Snack Food

 When let loose in the market for ultimate snacking, this is what I come up with.

The canister contains honey-roasted peanuts.

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Hot Dam!

Bonneville Dam driving west from Hood River

Driving anywhere in the Columbia River Gorge is a pleasure almost as great as recreating outdoors in the Gorge.

Views I've seen many times often strike me in new ways as light and weather bring a new perspective.

I proclaim stoke!

Monday, March 22, 2021

Some common questions about cats explained

What the hell is the cat doing?

The cat is vibrating due to neurological stimulation from brain activity. The purpose is uncertain, but it does seem to be associated with activity that angers humans. Some believe that the frequency of the vibration can be associated with greater psychic power. This vibrating is not to be confused with purring, which reinforces peoples’ anxiety about not spending more quality time with the cat.

Why is the cat on my pillow?

As predatory animals, cats are hard-wired to hunt, chase and roam. These activities, whether directed at a Pepsi bottlecap or at a new feather toy in your living room, consume a large amount of energy. To make up for such a fierce theoretical lifestyle, a typical cat must spend 15 hours per day sleeping. Also, because cats are crepuscular and thrive off surprising their humans, they are most active during the twilight hours of dawn and dusk leaving most of their day directed at storing energy and Minecraft.

What does ancient Judaism teach us about the cat?

Cats are not mentioned at all in the Bible, which gives them great leeway in directing scholarship to further undermine dogs. For such efforts, dogs are generally understood to be held in contempt in Israelite society due to their penchant for dining on blood and carcasses (I Kings 14:11; 16:4, 21:19, 24, and 22:38). They were regarded as real pains in the asses for roaming about at night, barking and howling, in search for food (Psalms 59:7, 15).

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Bike Repair Philosophy

Top of the bike repair toolbox.

Years ago I used to spend hours changing out parts of my bicycles, repairing and adjusting, endlessly fussing around. I had the feeling that no bike was ready for my use and customization would always be required.

As I aged I rode less and whatever strong opinions I had dissolved under the onslaught of time. 

Middle of the bike repair tool box

I used to know how to adjust my derailleurs, tune wheels, remove bottom brackets and headsets. After a while I realized that I wasn’t doing these things enough to remain competent. Several years might go by between these tech sessions.

About 10 years ago I decided to become an ABC bike mechanic – air, brakes, chain only. I can’t say I’ve ever regretted it. The phrase comes to mind, “the cheapest money you can spend.” Instead of putzing around for hours, doing a half-assed job, I can get a professional adjustment/repair and have fun riding the bike instead of watching how-to YouTube videos.

Bottom of the bike repair tool box.

Keeping up with just these three things can keep me out of the bike shop for years. “Air” includes replacing worn tires as well as maintaining proper air pressure for riding; “brakes” mean replacing the pads when worn (the hydraulic fluid adjustment and replacement I have the shop do); “chain” maintenance includes cleaning and lubrication and checking for excessive stretch.

Bikes today are stronger and components last longer than in the past. No need to be a renaissance bike mechanic – just go ride.

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Therapy Cat Objects To Any Therapy Other Than Himself

Therapy cat is hard at work ensuring proper sink drainage.

My son and I started working on a complex lego model. He does the assembly and I try and sort the tiles into color-coded piles. The model we are working on has many hundreds of tiny pieces.

We worried the therapy cat would object to any type of therapy that didn't directly involve him, so we covered our work with first a towel and then a blanket to try and disguise our project. Here is the result:


Sunday, March 14, 2021

How to Tell If Cat In Office

Always look for a twitching tail -- this is the first sign a cat has infiltrated your work space.


Thursday, March 11, 2021

The Important Pieces of My Productivity Mill

1) These implements are still needed. They include pens of various colors, letter opener, box cutter, scissors. The crucial piece of gear is the mug decorated by a small child.

2) I always surprise myself at how many pieces of paper need to be stapled.

3) Tea is the most popular beverage in the world. `Nuff said.

4) This attractive wooden base allows me to put my phone on speaker and use both hands to type or drink tea. 

5) Yes, for productivity I prefer a desktop computer with a dual monitor setup rather than a fancy laptop or a tablet.

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Sunday, March 7, 2021

More Grease Cuck Art

I like designing CD or album covers for music that might never get made. This is my latest idea for a concept album, "Get your elk on." 

For those who don't live in Portland, the elk statue was the site of many BLM protests in 2020. The elk was eventually taken down by the city and a post-modern hell-elk took its place. Now the hell-elk has also been removed.

I'm well suited for designing punk images as fine line work, delicate shading -- basically artistic nuance of any kind -- is impossible for me.

This lack of traditional training doesn't deter me from enjoying my fanciful pursuits. 


Saturday, March 6, 2021

Gump on the stimulus bill

 Again we see the GOP as a post-policy party, voting against anything the Democrats support.


Friday, March 5, 2021

This Is How I Feel

I’m in a class about Jews of the Mideast and North Africa. The above is a still from an Egyptian film from 1949. I haven’t seen it.

I imagine a befuddled father overwhelmed at how the modern world has subverted his expectations. This is me.

Sometimes art is timeless. 


Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Blithe Optimism: COVID Continues to Recede


Multnomah County is now in the lightest shade of the NYT color map – whooo!

Average daily cases is down to 43, which is a 5.3 cases per 100K of population.

Combined with the good vaccine news, I’d like to think this summer will be more social than the last. A guy can always dream.

Shooting positive post-pandemic vibrations out into the universe.


Monday, March 1, 2021

Photo Opp

 Sometimes the desire to take a photo overwhelms other consideration.