Big messy page today with ten tons of stuff. A little flu-talk, but it’s historical - the old cold comfort of past calamities. Some amusements and some random information.

We made it another week - the last of the bad three, I said a while ago. I misunderestimated. I think we can do this through April, but barely. The idea we can to it through June seems ruinous.

We’ll see.

Wife had a successful week working at home. I make a point of going to her office in the sunporch at 6 PM and blowing the Bedrock Quarry whistle. She goes running, and we make dinner. Thursday I went to a local fish & chips place for take-out, and it was frustrating - GAH I AM TOUCHING EVERYTHING, the tartar sauce cups, the pumps - I used the bleached towel, still felt contaminated. The clerk had gloves. He seemed cheery.

It was delicious, but I held the sandwich with a napkin, because I felt contaminated. Which is stupid, I know. But you get in that mood.

Anyway: week’s done, we’re all fine, there’s food in the fridge and beer in the storeroom, plenty of toilet paper. Rotaria is handling it all excellently; chats with parents outside sitting in the sun. Daughter took online classes in cosmology and journalism today. Hope she gets to go back to Boston some day; hope we have jobs and can afford it!

But we’re good now, and that’s better than fine, it’s great, and I’m grateful. There are some times I spin up the worst-case scenarios, but I have become adept at saying: perhaps. We’ll see. Be grateful for what we have.

But do not, I repeat, do not become complacent. About any of this.

Hey, I promised a site update, and I am here to give it to you.

Believe it or not, I scanned this 12 years ago. Put it in the hopper for Future Updates. Marked it as "done" a year ago, scheduled it for 2019. Opened it today and found it was only half-written. Finished it! Finally@

This is from two weeks ago. Wanted to clean out everything from March. Sign on a bar:

It just reminds you that there's never anything good going on when there are lots of pieces of paper taped to a door.

Here's some clippings from Davenport, Iowa, October 1918.



Arrest the coughers who don't muffle, but only warn the spitters?

  Always this. Always these guys doing this.

Davenport is part of the Quad Cities, and would have 270 deaths. Rock Island had 114 - but the source says that's probably undercounted.

Given that people were self-reporting with postcards and letters, I'd say, yeah, probably.

  Hero. Private, but that was enough .

Makes you wonder what Letts was like, eh? I know what it's like now.

The bank looked better when the hero's body came home for good.

From my vast collection of things with almost no monetary value whatsover, I bring you this week's entry.

The EEC, the European Economic Community, helps the Congo! How nice of them.

Looks like they gave them Homer Simpson's BBQ pit, though.

Blackey Ward? Is he being shaken down by William F. Buckley?

Dude could do a better job of feinging innocence, I think.

Solution is here.




This is the most sustained example of two old familiar performers attempting to hold it together I’ve ever heard.

“Grandpappy Spears” and “Cedric” are played by the same actor, Chester Lauck. When Abner enters the store, accompanied by the usual sound effect, it seems that someone on the set knocked over something - you hear the thump, and the sound of it being set right, I think. Norris Goff, who plays Abner, calls Lauck “Lum” by mistake, and that sets it off.



Around 1:18 you can hear Lauck go off script. Goff loses it at 2:00, and there’s the real sense they could lose it completely, but they get it back - for a while, until Lauck says something at 3:30, and that undoes them again even worse.

I love these guys, as you might have picked up over the years.





I'm not a great fan of the pre-rock male-vocal groups, but when they got the right song and the right arrangement, it's nice.




Wikipedi says they stared in 1959, and are "still active." Good for them, if that's still the case.





1976: Fly United!

And we made it. Another in the bank. How long? Who ever knows? Enjoy whatever your Shackleton Moment might be.




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