Sunday, August 31, 2008

Monopoly Game and WWII

A special tip of the hat to my friend Richard for sending this bit of WWII history along via email. Reprinted exactly as it came:

Starting in 1941, an increasing number of British airmen found themselves as the involuntary guests of the Third Reich, and their own were casting-about for ways and means to facilitate their escape.

Now obviously, one of the most helpful aids to that end is a useful and accurate map, one showing not only where-stuff-was, but also showing the locations of 'safe houses', where a POW on-the-lam could go for food and shelter. Paper maps had some real drawbacks: They make a lot of noise when you open and fold them, they wear-out rapidly, and if they get wet, they turn into mush.

Someone in MI-5 (similar to America 's CIA) got the idea of printing escape maps on silk. It's durable, can be scrunched-up into tiny wads, and unfolded as many times as needed, and makes no noise what-so-ever. At that time, there was only one manufacturer in Great Britain that had perfected the technology of printing on silk, and that was John Waddington, Ltd.

When approached by the government, the firm was only too happy to do its bit for the war effort.

By pure coincidence, Waddington was also the U.K. Licensee for the popular American board game, Monopoly. As it happened, 'games and pastimes' was a category of item qualified for insertion into 'CARE packages', dispatched by the International Red Cross, to prisoners of war.

Under the strictest of secrecy, in a securely guarded and inaccessible old workshop on the grounds of Waddington's, a group of sworn-to-secrecy employees began mass-producing escape maps, keyed to each region of Germany or Italy where Allied POW camps were located. (Red Cross packages were delivered to prisoners in accordance with that same regional system.) When processed, these maps could be folded into such tiny dots that they would actually fit inside a Monopoly playing piece.

As long as they were at it, the clever workmen at Waddington's also managed to add:

1. A playing token, containing a small magnetic compass,
2. A two-part metal file that could easily be screwed together.
3. Useful amounts of genuine high-denomination German, Italian, and French currency, hidden within the piles of Monopoly money!

British and American air-crews were advised, before taking off on their first mission, how to identify a 'rigged' Monopoly set ----- by means of a tiny red dot, one cleverly rigged to look like an ordinary printing glitch, located in the corner of the Free Parking square! Of the estimated 35,000 Allied POWS who successfully escaped, an estimated one-third were aided in their flight by the rigged Monopoly sets. Everyone who did so was sworn to secrecy indefinitely, since the British government might want to use this highly successful ruse in still another, future war.

The story wasn't de-classified until 2007, when the surviving craftsmen from Waddington's, as well as the firm itself, were finally honored in a public ceremony. Anyway, it's always nice when you can play that 'Get Out of Jail Free' card.

Gustav Progress Sunday August 31, 2008

Folks along the Gulf Coast might want to pay close attention as Gustav churns its way toward landfall. I snatched this image from the local radar station at KPRC a few moments ago.

We actually got a small shower this afternoon here in Houston as it moved east to west, the farthest reaches from this ugly bugger’s tentacles. I listened to the birds in the trees this afternoon as they were chattering a different song, noticeably different; wildlife seems to know in advance when something nasty is headed this way.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Second American Revolution

I got this YouTube video after watching it on my Facebook page; thanks and a tip of the hat go out to my friend Carollyn Scott for posting it there. Isn’t it time we listened to Common Sense and Thomas Paine?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Obama doesn’t want you to see this ad

I read the link on Michelle Malkin’s website where pressure is being applied to keep a controversial advertisement from being broadcast, one which supports the idea that Presidential candidate Barack Obama and unrepentant terrorist William Ayers had a close relationship, something which would damage Obama’s image.

“Barack Obama is friends with Ayers, defending him as, quote, 'Respectable' and 'Mainstream,'" the group's ad states. "Obama's political career was launched in Ayers' home. And the two served together on a left-wing board. Why would Barack Obama be friends with someone who bombed the Capitol and is proud of it? Do you know enough to elect Barack Obama?”

I can see how such an ad would be inflammatory; however, little red flags go up in my head when I see attempts to trample the First Amendment of the Constitution. The information being presented is either true or it isn’t; if it isn’t true there’s one heck of a lawsuit. This sounds more like an attempt to keep the truth from reaching the voting public, the same kind of truth which put a monkey wrench in John “Swift Boat” Kerry’s machinery when he tried to slime his way into the White House.

There are two takes on the term “swift boating”; one goes along the idea that a lie is just as good as the truth if you say it often enough while the other holds that the truth will set you free. John Kerry could have provided the answers and made the swift boaters out as liars and frauds; but he never came forward with those answers.

There is a way to bring the questions being raised to a conclusion, was there or is there more of a relationship between Barack Obama and William Ayers than “he’s a neighbor”. Here’s a line from Jim Kuhnhenn’s original article which makes sense:

“The campaign's aggressive tactics could draw more attention to a subject the campaign wants to go away. On Tuesday, the University of Illinois at Chicago will make available records of Obama's service on the board of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. The group was set up to improve the city's schools. The documents could shed further light on whether Obama and Ayers had a relationship.”

Why was the information at the University of Illinois at Chicago locked away? In the event that Obama does get elected, are we going to have four years of avoidance like the Clintons, “I can’t recall”, “I don’t have my notes in front of me”, “I don’t remember” and the list goes on until you get tired of asking. Just open the files, files which fall under the open records act, and be done with it.

Monday, August 25, 2008


There was a program on the other evening, a glimpse at folks who displayed remarkable, if not super human properties, unexplainable variance from limits associated with “normal”. It was presented as a scientific adventure although at time there was a circus like hawking to draw attention, like a “Ripley’s Believe It or Not” freak show; just not quite so demeaning. They had a fellow who could endure extreme cold for long periods and there was a talented artist, a man born without eyes and blind from birth who could paint quite well, almost as if he could see. One fellow had a mind which was more like a human calculator with the ability to extrapolate incomprehensible numbers in mere moments.

The topic which most caught my attention had to do with “synaesthesia”, a word which my ears couldn’t pick up and which I looked up later on the internet. A young woman explained how her natural senses over lapped; sight, sound and taste acted in concert creating an interesting quality of experiences. She would hear a word or combination of words while at the same time various colors were triggered in her mind. A similar cross over occurred with her taste buds; they being set off by words or sounds.

I don’t claim to see created colors floating across in front of me, connected somehow with what is being said and the only time my taste buds savor plump blackberries is when I’ve actually placed one in my mouth; however, there are times when I close my eyes and enjoy wonderfully rich displays of vibrant color. I’ve never viewed the Aurora Borealis, at least not first hand, and yet that sort of all encompassing ribbon presents itself now and then when my eyes are closed.

Sometimes the manufactured vision looks like the gentle flat sands of a beach as a thin layer of an ocean wave scurries in its retreat leaving a ripple of reflective green, interspersed on that patchwork are iridescent bright green and aquamarine puzzle pieces on an ever changing kaleidoscope. The feeling associated with the general green reflection is one of peace and tranquility. Once in a while, instead of a pleasant green, the colors center, more or less, around a curtain or large rectangular object, an intense deep red with contrasting shadows of black extending to the farthest reaches; no doubt a foreboding or warning.

Are these “visions” meant to correspond with thoughts currently contemplated; maybe, perhaps and I really have no clue. What’s the line from the psychiatrist, “You need to come back for treatment until you run out of money; then and only then are you cured.”

Folks don’t go around in general conversation about such things; perhaps everyone enjoys such distractions when their concentration powers are not engaged in making a living or maintaining the most basic supports of life while those with advanced stages or those who’ve learned the finer points of appreciation are permitted the extra indulgence of having words trigger color and taste while going about their daily chores. Some folks see rain while others see the rainbow, isn’t that how it works?

It occurred to me that the manner in which information is stored by our brain, each of us having unique experiences and associated emotions that are triggered by those experiences; that our filing system for data would determine our varied responses and provide a glimpse at why some folks laugh while yet others would find nothing funny at all with the same circumstance. I do know that the sense of smell is a powerful emotional trigger, one which is able to transcend time momentarily, transporting individuals many years into the past and across great distances.

Once in a while upon entering a building, one which has aged to some degree, there will be a slight odor caused by years of dust that might have accumulated in a corner, been mopped and left to dry again and again. The familiar scent finds a nerve as it passes through the receptors in my nose and goes in a flash to a memory folder tucked away deep inside, back where it hardly ever sees the light of day. Instantly my eyelids close, having been alerted by the flash of memory circuits now in a frenzy to enjoy the moment, as I’m taken hundreds of miles away and back to when I was a young boy standing in the stairwell of my grandparent’s apartment building; that’s where I first became aware of the particular odor. I’m only guessing; but most folks wouldn’t associate such an odor as pleasant and desirable.

Yesterday while attending one of my meetings we were discussing the process whereby an individual is “reborn”, that change of heart and mind associated with the conversion from the natural man into a saint. Several scriptures had been read as we came to Alma 36, as Alma testifies to his son, Helaman regarding his miraculous conversion.

“Yea, I say unto you, my son, that there could be nothing so exquisite and so bitter as were my pains. Yea, and again I say unto you, my son, that on the other hand, there can be nothing so exquisite and sweet as was my joy.” (Alma 36:21)

The point was made that the exact same words explained both the worst and the best feelings; how could the same words be used in such a way? I thought of the combination of words, “great and terrible”, used throughout the scriptures as a means of expression.

Somehow, in my file boxes of memories, the movie City Slickers came to mind; more specifically, the scene where the “boys” are comparing notes about their best day and their worst day as a means of entertaining themselves while out in the middle of a cattle drive. “The worst day was when they found a spot on my wife’s breast x-ray; all the worry and fear that goes with the possibility of it being a malignant tumor. The best day was when we found out nothing was wrong; same day.” I may have taken liberties with the exact quote; but you get the idea.

As pertain to the idea of “great and terrible”, the movie City Slickers had one of the best analogies that came to mind; however, the moment I mentioned “City Slickers” the rest of the room dismissed the possibility of anything which followed as having to be a light hearted joke rather than consider the information yet to be shared. In their minds, file boxes of memories if you will, City Slickers was a comedy and nothing more; interesting how that works. I did manage to blurt out the remainder of my thought, which may or may not have hit the mark; and left me with the notion that perhaps the open discussion wasn’t nearly as welcoming as I’d hoped, a cold reminder that my sense of humor, coupled with my sense of what is serious may not coincide with those around me.

When the meeting was over one of my friends came over with a smile on his face, holding his index finger as an exclamation, yet another reference to the movie City Slickers, “I thought you were going for the ‘real meaning of life’ for a minute”, followed by a laugh as we both replayed Curly’s gloved hand scene. No, that had never entered my mind, at least not until later. I guess my file system works differently.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Harry Potter and the Mother of All Wars?

What kind of stories would J. K. Rowling have written were she to have been brought up in a military environment? Just a thought as I glanced over some photographs posted by my friend Jahn on military humor. There are several posted, go take a look. I took the liberty of naming this one. There’s one in the mix showing the latest stealth fighter; Wonder Woman must have shared the technology with Uncle Sam.

“For That Which We Are About To Receive . . .”

“…We are truly grateful.” I’m not sure how that translates; but I’m pretty sure that’s what the crocodile said just before he ate the young man who waded out in the water to ask for a blessing from the ancient carnivore; … another entrant in the Darwin Awards competition.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

That’s Just The Way It Is

In the movie, Babe, the little pig who thought he was a sheep herding dog; there’s a line sung by three little mice at the close of a scene that got my attention, “That’s just the way it is.” The shrill voices laughing in harmony as Babe learns a lesson about life, pigs don’t get to eat inside the house; only dogs and cats get to go inside, “That’s just the way it is.”

Thought I’d share a few things that fit into that category, little observations as I went about my business. It’s been raining here in Houston for several days; an inch one day, two the next and again today a light mist saturates an already soggy turf. One of my regular small car lots called this morning wanting me to make some duplicates and fit keys to some cars, “repo units”, out behind the fence.

Most times that’s a reasonable request and I’d be out the door and on my way; not today. I reminded him how it’d been raining and that anything behind the fence would be sitting in a mud hole; that I wasn’t taking my truck anywhere near that mess, “That’s just the way it is.”

Then there was the young man who told me he’d lost the only key he had to a Lincoln Navigator. He’d gotten my name from the car dealership as knowing how to make and program a replacement key. Upon arriving I noticed “Slim Jim” type marks near the edge of the window on the driver’s side. The owner, standing on the other side points inside the vehicle and tells me, “Well I’ll be, the keys are right there. All you need to do is get it open now.”

I hardly ever use “Slim Jims” or, for that matter, any other car opening tool when opening a Ford/Lincoln/Mercury product. I fit a door key; it accomplishes the most important thing, obtaining a working door key which gets me that much closer to completing my job of restoring a lost key. Another benefit of fitting a key as opposed to “popping” the lock comes in my knowing that it’s the safest and smartest way to get in; can’t do any damage to the linkage or electrical systems inside the door cavity.

I “felt” the tumblers in his door lock, wrote down each cut and then clipped a perfect factory key which did absolutely nothing to open the door; oh, the key turned just fine except all the linkage rods had been unhooked by whoever worked on it prior to my arrival. The best part was the look on the customer’s face; a cross between, “Wow, I didn’t know a key could be made that way” and “Darn (substitute a more common expletive if desired), now I can’t blame the locksmith for breaking my door; something I knew had already been damaged all along but wanted to get a free repair job.”

I walked around to the tailgate and unlocked it, permitting the owner to climb in and retrieve the keys which had been sitting inside all along. I smiled and gave him a short course in door panel repairs technique as he forked over the cash payment we’d agreed upon; a discount provided since I didn’t have to supply a transponder key or the programming.

If times were tighter I might have taken the opportunity and suggested a price for repairing the damaged door; but that would have taken all the fun out of walking away from that slime ball and knowing he’d have to bite it, “That’s just the way it is.”

I’ll share one more and then get back to watching the Olympics; that’s where the judges pick their favorite and then figure out a way to justify lopsided scores awarded; I know, “That’s just the way it is.”

A week or so back, before the rains came and turned the oven into a mud hole, I got called out to make keys for a ninety “something” Chevy Geo Prism. The car had been sitting up for quite a while under a big Oak tree and the fellow wanted to get it back to running condition; having a key would help.

As soon as I opened the door I became aware of a couple of wasps hanging around, agitated when the door swung open. A careful inspection pointed to a large paper wasp nest which had become part of the car right next to where I needed to work.

I could have sprayed it with a can of wasp killer; but having a friend who works at the GM parts counter is easier. I make keys for their used car department so his company has a copy of my license and bond as well as my open account which makes such transactions possible. My thirty years of experience indicated the best way to fit a key near a wasp nest was to obtain a key code; you don’t have to do it the hard way all the time, “That’s just the way it is.”

Friday, August 15, 2008

Cyanide Death Is No Threat From Terrorism

The Houston Chronicle buried a story; must not have considered it important since it was given only a blurb on page A-12, “Canadian died of cyanide poisoning”. The Canadian just happened to be in Denver where the Democratic Convention is being held, a pound of cyanide was found in the room, not exactly what you’d expect for someone considering to “take out” only himself. The misdirection that he was from Canada might also be of interest since he actually was from Somalia and only recently became a Canadian citizen.

We can all rest easy because, according to the FBI, there’s no “apparent connection to terrorism”; well isn’t that just perfect. No need to worry folks, just your average everyday suicide.

You want to know what was on the front page of the Houston Chronicle? “Rice student called streets home”, all about a college student who wanted to fade out of view so he just took a powder; just not the same kind of powder that Saleman Abdirahman Dirie “accidentally” inhaled, touched or ingested causing his “apparent” suicide.

There was a big print headline, “Jury Vote Lands On Osteen’s Side”, earth shattering in every way as the wife of Lakewood pastor Joel Osteen exclaimed, “Thank you, Jesus!”. It’s nice to know that a minor assault which may or may not have occurred on an airplane was resolved and that the ministry will not suffer monetarily.

“Texas sun kills 2 boys here over 24 hours”, a real news event since the boys were accidentally left inside vehicles where they succumbed to excessive heat. “Time to go shopping”, we all needed to be reminded about Texas’ tax free weekend at the beginning of the school year. “Gates forecasts new Cold War”, Russia’s invasion of Georgia could chill bilateral cooperation, and no disrespect intended; but why is a huge portion of the front page being used as an obituary? “Medical Center Loses pioneer in pediatrics”, Ralph Feigin passed away; as did Salenan Abdirahman Dirie way back on page A-12.

Which of these stories has the potential to be a real newsmaker, the death of a wonderful doctor due to an illness which eventually took his life or the possibility of a terrorist bent on killing as many folks at the Democratic National Convention by exposing them to deadly cyanide? I forgot, according to the FBI, there’s no “apparent connection to terrorism”; well isn’t that just perfect. I’m so glad that was cleared up; where are the funny papers?

Thursday, August 14, 2008

How to Recognize a Persian Cat

In this age of being Politically Correct sometimes you just have to say, “What the ….” I know the Spanish Basketball team caused an uproar this past week when they posed for a picture, all of them holding their eye lids pulled as if to mock the host country in the Olympics.

I got this picture of a suicide bomber from a friend who’d found it on the internet, obviously a Persian Cat. I understand the ACLU has been hired to represent slandered species of animals after seeing commercial exploitation based on racial bias.

Tidy Cat had to drop a new line of self cleaning cat litter boxes after it was learned that radical Siamese cats planned to enhance the formula and wipe out a family of Russian Blues. There was no proof what so ever the Siamese cats in question had ties to Islam and sanctions by the UN have proven useless; they have their own litter box to clean up.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Retired HPD Officer DUI

That’s what the headline would be in tomorrow’s Houston Chronicle if I were to go about my normal business today. I took some medicine last night to relieve pain caused by a nerve pinch and again this morning. There’s a warning pasted on the side of the prescription bottle to avoid operating heavy machinery; that it might cause dizziness.

I didn’t think much of it, having taken it before; but for some reason it reacted differently this time. My first clue was that I felt tired, even from the moment I got up; as if I’d never been to bed. I showered to shake off the feeling of being sleepy and went out to take care of a couple of locksmith jobs.

On the way to the first location I called my friend Steve, who also has regular back pain issues, just to keep in touch. We talked for only a few moments and he asked if I’d been drinking, telling me I sounded a bit “schloshed”, if there is such a word. I don’t drink so that made me laugh; but I do take pain medicine once in a while. Maybe my bad hearing heard it wrong; in either case it fit the way my head felt and I made sure to pay extra attention to my driving until I got home.

The news media would have a field day in the event I got pulled over for DUI and as the day progressed I recognized the medicine was making me even more groggy with each passing hour; glad I decided not to drive anymore and rescheduled locksmith calls for tomorrow. I slept most of the day; waking up around three to get ready for Temple night.

My daughter came in the front door a little while ago after a day of doing math problems in her third semester of Calculus; and no, I have no idea how to help her do homework if she has a question. Anyway, I’d asked her how her day had gone; Bonnie looked at me and said, “Dad, you’re drunk, you can’t work at the Temple like that”.

I figure if it shows that easily I’d better not try to drive or even work my regular assignment at the Temple. I didn’t expect the need for a last minute replacement and had no luck going down a list of Temple volunteers. I called the Temple Coordinator and explained how it wouldn’t work, my showing up intoxicated on prescription drugs.

Much better to stay home than drive in my condition; instead, let the Chronicle talk about the Osteen trial where the flight attendant claims to have been assaulted so she can weasel a chunk of change out of them. If the jury decides in favor of the flight attendant I hope they award her one whole dollar; a just reward for attempting to use the civil courts system as a means to extort money from folks and then make the flight attendant pay the legal expenses for both sides. “Jury Lotto, step right up and see if it’s your lucky day.”

Appreciation for Gymnastics

I’ve had a chance to watch a bit of the Olympic Games from Beijing; my attention focused primarily on the gymnastic competition. Lucy was up late the other night and had the television going while she was in the other room fine tuning a map with the locations of each family in our Ward, a map which would help in the event of some natural disaster.

I’d turned in earlier and wandered into the den, our big screen television lighting up the room. There was a fellow doing a very difficult routine on the still rings, moves that required considerable strength and agility. I was impressed with the smooth transition between each deliberate position.

Thinking back to my limited experience with gymnastics in college, almost forty years ago; that can’t be right, can it? I’d convinced the coach to let me take gymnastics instead of one of the other mandated physical education classes by performing a very simple tumbling routine. I had no delusions that I was good at it; just wanted to do something different that would require more than showing up for a grade.

We warmed up with light hearted competition drills on the ropes that hung from the ceilings. I can hardly believe how quickly we’d climb; “full bite” pulls with our arms drawing up the rope without the use of our legs, they being in “L-seat” the whole time. The idea of being afraid of heights didn’t have a chance to kick in since the races were so fast as to remove that aspect of the challenge.

I had a beginner’s level floor routine, nothing that would qualify for competitive gymnastics; but enough “B” moves to show a rudimentary grasp of the sport; flexibility, composition, fluid motion and use of the space. I never did figure out how to do a back walk over; finding out in later years that my spine had an extra vertebrae reduced certain flexibility, the walk over was not to be.

The coach challenged me to put together a parallel bar routine; again, nothing spectacular by Olympic standards. I was able to do all the requirements; mount, change of direction, strength, flow and dismount. I attempted the pommel horse, high bar and still rings with only marginal success; never achieving a passable routine. I did surprise some of the others when I pulled off an Iron Cross and held it for several seconds.

I came away with a greater appreciation of the necessary discipline each gymnast must have in order to compete. Thinking back, there wasn’t a day when I wasn’t bruised or banged up from trying to nail down some new move. I practiced for hours and hours in order to obtain a passing grade and with all my effort and improvement it was clear how much better the gymnastic team members were.

When I have a chance to watch Olympic level gymnastics, routines which include moves I could only dream about doing; I tip my hat to these athletes knowing the price they’ve paid in bruises and bumps, sore ankles from landing awkwardly while learning a dazzling dismount, torn calluses from twisting and turning on the high bar, the mind control game to overcome fears and everything else that goes with gymnastics competition. They are all winners for having applied their efforts, even knowing that at the end of the competition, only one of them will take home the gold.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Houston Police Property Room Lost Even More Stuff

According to an article in the Houston Chronicle, the Houston Police Department Property Room lost more than pistols that were supposed to be held as evidence; this time they’ve misplaced $50,000 worth of sex toys. No, I’m not making this up, talk about an abuse of the system.

No doubt the person in charge of the property is screwed. You have to wonder; at least with the loss of the pistols from the property room you can visualize how those items might be applied by the criminal element out on the street.

I know, the loss of property from a secure area is no laughing matter, especially since batteries were not included. I hope there’s a proper investigation, wouldn’t want anyone going off half cocked.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Visit the Temple of the Lord

I borrowed the video from Mary over at By Study and By Faith. If you’d like to know more about the sacred nature of the Temple and why the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints builds them, here’s a link.

Too many folks have little if any idea of their purpose here in mortality. If you don’t know where you came from, how can you know where you’re going?

Monday, August 04, 2008

Harry Reid Said it; Must be True

This interview with Harry Reid explains how a Liberal Democrat can justify robbing Peter to pay Paul; the government isn’t forcing you to pay income tax, it’s voluntary. The video has the following quote attached to it:

“When you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit. Idiot Harry Reid maintains that paying income tax is voluntary in the U.S.. Harry Reid is the Majority Leader in the U.S. Senate. He's obviously not very bright. But then again... he is a politician.”

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Lucy’s Wholesale House and Emporium

I can almost see the living room floor, at least as much as I’m ever going to see. We still have boxes stacked along one set of book cases; fancy electric wheat grinders next to “supply your own energy” hand crank grinders, the last few ham radios and power pack units and a case of “So Easy to Preserve” instruction books. Lucy get’s these things at a reduced cost when purchasing in bulk and then let’s folks have them at her cost.

I’ve tried to explain how the free enterprise system works; you know, cost of goods sold mark up and profit for time spent. Lucy isn’t in it for the money so it’s a break even proposition where lots of folks get things they can use at better than reasonable prices.

The UPS drivers must have a betting pool wondering what it is we do for a living. I had one of them off load a large box of stuff, something he was going to leave on the front porch; but instead I’d already opened the front door. He was kind enough to go the extra few feet and leave it next to the piano where he had a chance to see all the sacks of wheat and rice stacked against the front window there in the living room.

He didn’t say a word; but I could see the little gears in his head turning as he shook off the thought. The only reason that stuff is still in burlap bags is because the heat sealer unit ( that’s what’s inside that wooden box the one with the steel carry handles ) needs a replacement element; otherwise it would all be stored away in Mylar pouches by now with all the other food storage.

Lucy’s about finished distributing yet another case of ham radio equipment complete with “J Pole Antennas”. The north side of Houston will have better coverage whenever the next tropical storm or hurricane hits with all the jibber jabbering ham radio operators outfitted in the latest gizmos.

Just after we got home from our trip up to New York I worked up the courage to drill a hole in my house for the coaxial cable to hook up on the back of Lucy’s radio. There’s a light switch box convenient to where Lucy wanted to set up shop so I drilled the hole through the back of that box to the outside and ran the cable through the face plate. We went out and got a do it yourself kit at the local IKEA store; not much, just a few pieces of cut wood and screws to make a shelf unit. It’s been stained and sits in our bedroom atop an antique chest where Lucy can talk to her heart’s content.

It’s a good thing all that stuff is being cleared out with Autumn just around the corner; that’s when the Chocolate Order and the San Francisco Herb order start. The best part of that is how the house smells with all that stuff scattered around the edges. That’s life here at Lucy’s Wholesale House and Emporium.