On the Road and In Your Backyard

Good Morning All,

Have a wonderful day, and enjoy the pictures!

I’m clearing out submissions.

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Monday Morning Open Thread: Hot Hot Hot

I understand that the heat wave has broken for some of you lucky Jackals in the upper midwest, but here north of Boston, we’re still trying to breath warm steam. Not to knock other peoples’ lifestyle choices, but triple-digit heat indexes are among the reasons I chose to move to Massachusetts instead of Florida!

Hot takes, on the other hand:

More hot takes:

The crowd of 800 roared when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi took the stage Friday at the Young Democrats of America’s national convention in Indianapolis.

Pelosi spoke for about 20 minutes, drawing standing ovations multiple times, including for the House’s likely futile passage of a $15 minimum wage bill, defending abortion rights, for saying Democrats would hold President Donald Trump accountable and for saying Democrats would sweep the House, Senate and White House in the 2020 elections…

Whatever its flaws, she said, she believes there is no institution in this nation that has come up with better ideas, more creative thinking and been more willing to meet challenges than the Democratic Party.

She noted that 60 percent of House Democrats are women, people of color or part of the LGBTQ community.

“That’s a beautiful thing,” she said. “The beauty is in the mix. Our diversity is our strength. Our unity is our power.”…

“We do understand the urgency of the challenge to this country that we love … and to the Constitution,” she said, suggesting Democrats must defend against “those who would degrade our beautiful land from sea to shining sea, those who would disrespect newcomers to our country and those who would undermine our values.” …

Maybe, just maybe, the future *is* female…

Sunday Evening Open Thread: Kamala Brings The Funny

Focused, intelligent, strong and decisive…and a great sense of humor.

Hope everyone had a good day. Let’s face the week knowing we are not alone in our kindness, our determination, and our belief in what is decent.  Every day seems to be a new fight, but each fight seems to reveal more and more good people fighting beside us. Take time off when needed (did me a world of good this past week and I’m repeating it this coming week), but don’t despair. Despair is what they want.

From the Penzys Spice email this morning Kindness can’t sit down simply because anger has stood up….What the Republicans are doing right now isn’t just designed to rile up their base, it’s also there to demoralize those who would otherwise stand in their way. There was a time that rilling up their base was enough, but not anymore. As long as we stay standing, the next election will be in our hands.

Open thread

Scotian’s GoFundMe

*** UPDATE ****

We blew past the mark, and I can not thank you all enough.


Hey folks work out the details for with Scotian and is significant others, and here it is:

To cover medical and death costs from sudden pancreatic cancer diagnosed 2 weeks after spending the prior 18 months caregiving for father while his cancer killed him. 2 weeks before he died I was diagnosed stage 4 pancreatic cancer that already was in my liver meaning I was terminal, not curable. I found out at the end of May, dad died 2nd week of June, so it hasn’t been 2 months since I got this news. I have at best the rest of the summer if I am really really lucky. I and my wife are long term disabled, and lack resources. Ideally I am trying to raise enough to cover my end of life costs, arrangements, and leave some for my wife to be able to grieve for both dad and me. Anything anyone is willing to give for that end would be truly appreciated.

I set the target as a minimum from what I know for the cremation fee and such, I simply do not know the real costs well enough to do more than that. In a few days I will more completely fill in my story, be warned, it isn’t pretty. Over the last 26 months if it wasn’t bad luck I was having it was no luck was so true it is scary.

Thank you all for your time in reading this, and especially to those who wanted me to set something like this up so they could help, it is hard to ask for this kind of help, but needs must when the devil drives.

i wish there was something I could say or do that would change this.

Weekend Leftovers Open Thread: Space, the Final Frontier of Bad Takes

FTFNYT, with the Hottest Take:

America’s Premier Leftist Publication: Hold our Tang!

A very *American* hero…

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And Now We Wait for it to Rot

Chopped up the five heads of cabbage, weighed it, measured out the salt, and threw it all in the crock:

As you can see, I just cut it by hand because I like a variety in the size, and my expensive food processor I bought a decade ago died last year and I never replaced it because it’s just easier to do things by hand with a knife or a mandolin and cleaning the damned thing was more of a pain in the ass than anything else. Plus, I just like using a knife. Then we kneaded, mashed, pounded (I had fun punching it, tbh), macerated, and rotated the cabbage until the salt did its magic and pulled out the moisture:

It’s about halfway through the process of here, and when it is finished with a plate on top and weighed down, there should be a good bunch of liquid covering it:

Two quick tips- make sure you don’t use too much salt. I don’t do anything exotic, we just made it with cabbage and salt when I was a kid, so there is none of that juniper berries or caraway seed or other horseshit those soft Germans in Bavaria do. Fuck you with your sugar in sauerkraut. But too much salt can kill the fermentation process, so make sure you measure carefully.

Second, I found doing all five heads of cabbage at once to be unwieldy, so I used a 2 gallon crock to prep and the then dumped it in the 5 gallon crock to ferment, then just repeated. Also, the five gallon crock was the right size for a dinner plate to push down the kraut and keep it submerged with the stone.

We’ll see how this turns out in a few weeks.

Lost Puppy Update: Popcorn Is Home

Popcorn. I about died laughing when his person told me that. I only talked to him on the phone, but I am so picturing this big burly guy and his three-pound pup name Popcorn. He is out of town and the pup snuck away from his “grandparents”. I now have everyone’s names on file – he doesn’t live far from me…but too close to a busy street for him to keep wandering off. They need to figure something out. Although he is pretty old, so odds have been with him so far.

Now that he’s settled, we are off to hike.

Here’s another open thread.

Respite Open Thread: Serena Brings the Joy

This made me smile so much!

Respite open thread

***I know some are looking for an update on the little white ball of fluff – who btw, is a grumpy old man despite his sweet looks. I’ve filed a report with the Humane Society, but he’ll stay here as long as I can. He’s up on the neighborhood boards. He ate a bowl of wet cat food (did I mention he’s old and all I have for dog food is BIG crunchies, so I worried about his teeth) and is settled in my front yard, under a big tree. In case his people are driving around looking for him. ***

Sunday Morning Garden Chat: California Xeriscaping

From commentor Jerzy Russian:

Here are some pictures of my front yard in San Diego. About five years ago, we decided to replace our grass lawn with California native plants. The state of California was offering some sizable rebates to people who put in low-water landscaping, so we went ahead and made the change. We went to a local community college nursery and met with a landscape architect for a free consultation to get some ideas on what plants to use and how to arrange them.

The transition was relatively straightforward, but lengthy with some labor involved. We first had to kill the grass. This was accomplished by covering it with black plastic for six months, during which time the Sun cooked it to death. Next, we rented a sod cutter from the nearby Home Depot and cut up the dead sod. After that was hauled away, we were ready to begin.

At top: We decided to put a dry river bed running diagonally down the yard. We put down landscaping fabric down over the whole yard, and arranged stones of various sizes to make the banks of the river bed and the bed itself. All of the other parts of the yard was covered with mulch.

We have a lot of succulents that were just pups when they were planted. They have grown quite large, especially in the last six months with the relatively wet winter we had.

This one (google tells me this might be sempervivum) came from a single small cutting.
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Lost In The Rain…Again

So April 2018, I found this guy wandering in the streets and posted his story here:

I found this little guy walking in the rain not far from my house yesterday. Weighed all of 3-4 lbs, wet.  No tags, no chip, no idea where he came from, I let him sleep in my car (wrapped in a blanket sitting atop a puppy pad) all day while we searched for his owners. I thought it was less stressful than a crate and/or bringing him anywhere near my  pups. It was warm enough that I wasn’t worried about him.

I let the Humane Society know I had him, put notices on the local message boards, drove around the neighborhood. Around 5 pm the HS called and asked me to bring him in for intake and I agreed. I’d felt like I ran out of options and he really couldn’t stay with me overnight,  but told them to call me if no one claimed him.

He was a little grumpy old man – my guess part terrier, part Chihuahua – but sweet as could be.

Around midnight last night got a message from the neighborhood message board about a missing dog. It was him. They were successfully reunited this morning.

Happy ending. I on the other hand got absolutely NOTHING done yesterday.


So tonight my niece – the same niece who was my accomplice when we rescued Mabel and Maddie from the park- and I turned onto my street after a day of driving to find this little guy once again wandering down my street – the complete opposite end of the street from where he was last time.

He still has no tags with his name or owners’ phone number. He does have a city license. So I’ll call the Humane Society tomorrow and see if there is a number on file. I don’t want to turn him in again because I think the fine is double the second time.  I know last time he slipped out of a small opening (he weighs all of 3lbs, it doesn’t take much for him to get out, I’m sure) and they were worried sick. I’m sure something similar happened this time, too.

It was once again, pouring rain. He’s safely tucked in my garage in a crate. I’m headed out to get him a blanket for the night.

But how the heck we found each other again…well it is one of the mysteries of the universe.

Meanwhile…open thread.

Saturday Night Open Thread

Busy day- processed a bunch more summer apples into applesauce (got 4 quarts out them), rubbed down a brisket and got it in the fridge for tomorrow, processed a couple more gallon bags full of tomatoes and got them in the freezer (gonna make sauce all in one day when my basil is ready), got the fermenting crock cleaned so I can make sauerkraut tomorrow, planted beets, put in a last four tomato plants that I found just shriveling up and dying at a greenhouse (so I said what the hell, might as well give them a chance and maybe I will get some late, late fruit), got in a bunch of cucumber plants underneath the tomatoes that are currently fruiting that will be done in a week so I can start to trellis them, and got the beets planted.

Tomorrow I am smoking the brisket (I got it already marked down in a buy one get one free deal, so it was only 12 buck for ten pounds!!!), pickling the first run of okra, and making the sauerkraut. Really excited with how much I am able to get out of a few beds- next year I want to try to plan it a little better and maybe put in two more beds.

Also, I was able to reach Scotian, and we chatted via text for a bit, and will talk tomorrow about setting up a gofundme. Which means that you all can STOP EMAILING ME, FACEBOOK MESSAGING ME, TAGGING ME IN FACEBOOK POSTS, TEXTING ME, AND CALLING ME FER THE LOVE OF CHRIST YOU PEOPLE. You all are so good. Just decent people. Well, a couple of you suck. You know who you are

Baud/Cole 2020.

Respite Open Thread: To the Moon, Google!

Bonus: Buzzfeed has assembled a batch of contemporary news photos that may not “Change Your Perspective Of The Moon Landing”, but that certainly have nostalgia value for those of us who can remember the original event!

Countertops Are In – Open Thread

The kitchen is functional again. The only thing that has to be done is that the drawer under the cooktop needs to be cut down a half-inch or so. I think I can talk a friend into doing that. The kitties and I are taking the day easy.



And a helper in between:

Open thread!

Seriously: A Disgrace Before All the Nations

If you wrote this scene for the cartoon villain in a genre movie, it’d be rejected as ‘too broad’. If your grandfather reacted this way during a serious event, you’d be looking at assisted living facilities with memory-care components. I don’t know if this event was scheduled well in advance, or if the Oval Office Occupation slapped it together to reassure the Talibangelicals that Jeffrey Epstein’s friend Trump still had their backs. But as an American, I’m genuinely ashamed that this is the face we’re showing the world.

When President Trump this week met human rights activist Nadia Murad, an Iraqi who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2018 for speaking out about her agonizing torture and rape while in Islamic State captivity, he seemed unaware of her story and the plight ofher Yazidi ethnic minority.

For several minutes in the Oval Office on Wednesday, Murad stood beside a seated Trump, who mostly avoided eye contact with Murad, and implored the president to help her community return to Iraq. She explained that the Islamic State, or ISIS, may be gone but that Iraqis and Kurds are fighting for control over Yazidi lands…

Murad, who lives in Germany, told Trump that she never wanted to be a refu­gee but that ISIS murdered her mother and six brothers.

“Where are they now?” Trump asked.

“They killed them,” she repeated. “They are in the mass grave in Sinjar, and I’m still fighting just to live in safety.”

“I know the area very well that you’re talking about,” Trump responded.
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Open Thread: Lindsey Boylan US Congress Candidate

Have we highlighted this campaign ad yet? I’ve been offline most of the last few days.

I’m on the road all day. Keep a good thought. At least this time I’m not driving with the Big Dogs. Bixby hates the heat, so even in the winter, when I drive long distances with him, the car has to be freezing or he gets carsick. Scout and I have to bundle up to survive.  With these triple-digit temps, no way he’d be comfortable. So he’s at home snoozing in front of not one, but two fans. It’s a Bixby-life.

What’s on your Saturday agenda?

Open thread