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The Son of a St. Louis Federal District Court Judge (The Honorable William Hungate, notable for presiding over school desegregation cases) Plays the Bass January 31, 2008

Posted by Michael in Music.
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The header refers to a comment I made in a thread below.

The One Guest Everybody Hoped and Prayed Could Make It January 31, 2008

Posted by daveintexas in Crime, Ducks, Literature.
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Arrived safely today with Dave.


Puddle of Mudd – Psycho January 31, 2008

Posted by Pupster in Music, Science, Women Ranting.
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It’s got a nice beat.  You can listentothevoicesinyourhead to it. 

UH-60 Randomness January 30, 2008

Posted by daveintexas in Food, Sports.
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A flight of eight Blackhawks from Ft. Hood just buzzed by my office window, about 200 feet away. 


Gave me a hard on.

Did I say that out loud?

Public Art in Central Ohio January 29, 2008

Posted by Michael in Travel.
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Who says we got no culture? Huh?



“See the Weenie” January 29, 2008

Posted by skinbad in Science, Sex.
Tags: , , , ,
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That’s what a section heading in this book I’m looking at says. It’s an old book on “skits and stunts.”

Most people are fascinated by this simple little-finger stunt. You can use it anywhere–from a situation in which a group of friends are clustered around after a meal, to one in a large auditorium where hundreds or thousands of people are seated. Each person checks himself.

What you do is simply raise your hands to eye level, put the tips of your forefingers nearly together, and focus on a distant object. An illusion of a frankfurter, floating in space, [between your fingertips] is created. The closer the fingers are to the eyes, the larger the weenie. To see it the eyes have to be focused on a distant object, not on the fingers themselves.

Frankfurter.  That’s a word we’ve given up on too easily. I tried it and it worked. I’m quite relieved to have found this. I’ve been wondering what I could do if I had to entertain a group of strangers in an awkward social setting.

I have to get me a few o’ these for my remodeling project January 29, 2008

Posted by composmentis in Humor.
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The designer of this switchplate could use some ‘sensitivity training’ . . .


Golden Years January 29, 2008

Posted by Michael in Science.
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Have you noticed that Retired Geezer seems like a relentlessly cheerful fellow? He is so darn good-natured that you just want to smack him sometimes.

Well, I do anyway.

A recent study suggests that this may be age-related, and that middle age tends to be depressing world wide. Fifteen years ago, Geezer was probably just as crabby as I am.

LONDON – Middle age is truly miserable, according to a study using data from 80 countries showing that depression is most common among men and women in their 40s.The British and U.S. researchers found that happiness for people ranging from Albania to Zimbabwe follows a U-shaped curve where life begins cheerful before turning tough during middle age and then returning to the joys of youth in the golden years.

Previous studies have shown that psychological well-being remained flat throughout life but the new findings to be published in the journal Social Science & Medicine suggest we are in for a topsy-turvy emotional ride.

You start pulling out of the middle age funk in your fifties. Whew. The worst is over for me. That’s good to know.

The report only speculates regarding the reason for this.

“It happens to men and women, to single and married people, to rich and poor, and to those with and without children,” Oswald said. “Nobody knows why we see this consistency.”

One possibility may be that people realize they won’t achieve many of their aspirations at middle age, the researchers said. Another reason could be that after seeing their fellow middle-aged peers begin to die, people begin to value their own remaining years and embrace life once more.

It seems to me that the researchers have overlooked the most obvious hypothesis that would explain this phenomenon.

You look in the mirror one day and see someone your parents age. That bums everyone out.

Middle age is truly depressing, study finds

Lead Poisoning January 28, 2008

Posted by skinbad in Music.
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Lots of talk about armament in the thread below. I think careful readers have all learned something–namely, no sudden movements around Russ. Michael has been trying to keep what he’s bringing to the pistol party under wraps. I did a little digging though and figured it out:


Travels with Charlie January 28, 2008

Posted by Pupster in Ducks, Economics, Personal Experiences, Travel, Women Ranting.
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Instead of his usual Sunday afternoon Jeep wash and vacuum party, Charlie Wrangler and I went to The Powder Room, site of the soon to be held Innocent Bystanders Pistol Party. I wanted to see how busy they were around 1:00 on a typical Sunday. Charlie and I were somewhat surprised to see the parking lot very full.

I didn’t have to wait for a shooting lane, someone was just checking out at the counter in front of me. The 10 position range was all full when I took up my station. I shot 100 rounds through my Bersa .380, and 50 with my .38 special. I was terrible. There was a lady in the lane next to me raining down hot .40 shell casings over the partition.  She was very good.  I was nervous.

I (again) talked to the owners about the Pistol Match on Superbowl Sunday. They suggested that I call before we arrive, and they will start grouping the shooters to one side of the range. They won’t reserve any lanes in advance, but I was assured that most of the time, Superbowl Sunday is not busy. We’ll see.

I asked about ammunition, and was told that the main rules are no magnum loads, and full metal jacket.  You can read some of their additional range rules and fees here.  I stopped by a Walmart on the way home, and compared ammunition prices:

100 rounds           Powder Rm            Walmart

.380                           $31.00                       $26.00

.38special                    33.00                         26.00

.45ACP                        41.00                         29.00

9MM                            24.00                         16.00

I plan on a Walmart run on Saturday before the party, so if any of you shooters want me to pick up some ammo, let me know.  I would also echo Russ’ suggestion that you bring ear protection and eye protection if you have it, to save the rental fees. 


Kennedy To Support Obama January 27, 2008

Posted by Michael in Politics.
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I truly despise Ted Kennedy. I admit that my attitude is irrational, but I just can’t stand the man. Once, Cathy and I had dinner in the same Boston restaurant as Senator Kennedy, and I was disconcerted by the fact that he appeared to be a normal human being. I prefer thinking of him as a loathsome toad.


If this report is true, Kennedy’s opinion, all by itself, will confirm for me that Obama is unfit for the office.

16 minutes ago

MACON, Ga. – Democratic Sen. Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts will endorse Senate colleague Barack Obama for president, party officials confirmed Sunday.

The endorsement will be announced Monday in Washington, said the officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak for the record. An official close to the senator said the announcement will be made during an Obama campaign rally at American University, where he will be joined by Sen. Kennedy and his niece, Caroline Kennedy, who also has endorsed Obama.

Mary Jo Kopechne was unavailable for comment.

Kennedy to endorse Obama, officials say

Maybe an excellent music selection will calm me down.



No [Dave in Texas], that music selection will not work.

This shot will


Scared White People — Part Trois January 26, 2008

Posted by Michael in Personal Experiences.
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The video below reminds me of Cathy and me going to the Moose Lounge in a rough area of North St. Louis. This was about 30 years ago.

See, back then St. Louis had these identical twin brothers, the Bosman Twins, who both played saxophone with their band. They were extremely talented. We had seen them at some predominately white bars. We decided to go see them at the Moose Lounge with a couple of friends.

We were the only white people there. When we walked in, everybody kind of looked at us, wondering what the heck we were doing in that part of town. We were kinda nervous.

After we sat down, I made the funniest joke of my life.

I said, “Don’t order a drink with an umbrella.”

OK, you had to be there, but that was the funniest thing I ever said in my life. I’m never going to top that.  Call it situational humor. We practically died laughing.

The folks at the Moose Lounge turned out to be very friendly. I also learned something that night that has since proven to be consistently true — you get a much more generous pour at black bars than white bars.

The Bosman Twins were unbelievable on their home turf. They actually stepped off the stage and walked across the table tops in the crowded club while they played. They could play two saxes each at the same time. During breaks, they walked around the room and talked to the patrons, and they made a point of greeting us.

Anyway, this video reminds me of that night.