Geri 2014
I was all set to watch the Hugo finalists announcement on the U-Stream feed, but time is not my friend and it turns out I'll be away from my computer and an internet connection when it happens.

I'd love it if someone in the room for the Hugo announcement at Minicon could call me on my cell phone when the announcement is starting, hold the phone up, and see if I can listen in that way. (It's the same cell number I've always had, the one with a 612 area code.)

It doesn't have to be someone at Minicon. It could be someone at Norwescon or even Satellite, but Minicon is the Easter convention of my heart and it would be fun to "attend" it briefly this way.


P.S. I've left a voicemail message for Diane Lacey on her US mobile number. So if you see this and see her before 2:30pm Minnesota time, please tell her to check for it. I think she's at Minicon. In my head, she always is.

On this Minicon Easter weekend...

...I'm glad I took a moment to stop, reflect, and remember that it is sometimes better to miss out on a chance to build friendships and community in order to avoid the appearance (and perhaps action) of mocking the religious beliefs of the very people you're trying to build friendships and community with.

And that's why the mini Easter basket of seasonal treats I took to the folks at the transfer station this morning had three yellow chick Peeps, two standard marshmallow bunny Peeps, and nary a single Cthulhu Peeps. And the same will probably be true of the basket I plan to drop off at the neighbor's house in another hour or so.

But thanks to Andra, who taught me how to make Cthulhu Peeps way back at...Minicon 34, I think...the bowl of Easter treats I'm taking to share with friends I'm having dinner with tonight? That bowl will be amply protected by minions of the Elder God Himself.


RIP Milo. Nameste.

Geri 2014
Why yes, I do know how to pose for the camera
Milo in my office, right next to my desk chair, smack dab between me at work and me being anyplace else.

Sentry Milo, redux
Milo at Conant Brook Dam. Our favorite place for walks.

On April 8th, Marc Abrahams tweeted "Many of you who met Milo, our improbable, socially-challenged-yet-charismatic dog. Milo went peacefully, today." Marc shared the sad news in email, but I missed his public mention of it, and held off on making my own until I checked with him. It was a bit my news, but it was totally his and Robin's.

I treasure rich memories of Milo's three years of vacations here at Toad Woods, from his trial visit in 2008 to week-long stays while Marc & Robin were traveling, typically overseas. Milo's vacations here ended three years ago when Tillie and Jinx moved in. Cats were squirrels as far as Milo was concerned. Their purpose in life was to be be his prey, to get impossibly excited about as only Milo could. Or so I'm given to understand. We never tried to introduce them.

But Milo continued to greet me joyfully during each visit to the Improbable Research headquarters in Cambridge and there was never any doubt that he would have gleefully jumped in the Cardis for another vacation at Toad Woods, never appearing to hold it against me that we didn't do that any more.

So now I miss Milo as well as Baskerville, Willow, Brandywine, and Kachinka, all dogs I've loved over the past, urk, 42 years. Oddly enough, I don't miss Wags, the dachshund of my childhood. Well, maybe a little, but Wags was clearly Daddy's dog. I had closer relationships with the parakeets we had throughout the years of my childhood than I did with Wags.

Nameste, Milo. You were an energy-generating joy to be around.


Woodturning: Acts of Creation

Geri 2014
Last Saturday at this time, we just finishing up the first day of the woodturning class I took at Snow Farm. Shortly after arriving home, I was talking with Nate Bucklin on the phone and he sang the following chorus:

You can tell it on the mountain, in the valley far below,
But you needn't tell the craftsmen what they already know,
From the author at her keyboard, to the woodwright at his lathe
Every act of creation is an act of faith!

Later than night, carbonel sent me more information about "Acts of Creation," the song the chorus is from. It's by Cat Faber, and one Kathy Mar sings.

A bit of web searching turned up the lyrics and a video of Joe Bethancourt performing it. Recommended.

And so it was that I returned for the second day of class with a fitting song in my heart and head. Joy shared is joy magnified. Thanks, Nate! Thanks, Carbonel!

In follow-up woodturning news, on Wednesday night I went over to West Springfield for the monthly meeting of the Western Massachusetts Woodturning Club. Annual dues are a mere $25, so I joined. I also invested $6 in their wood swap and walked away with 9 pieces of wood, 8 of them ready to be turned into woodshavings in pursuit of my developing more comfort with lathe tools. They're a mix of maple and cherry, some dry, some green. 3.25-4.25" square and 5-10 inches tall. A bargain, I think.

The club has a couple of lathes as well as other useful powertools. I don't yet know how it works when it comes to using them, but they did mention needing to schedule a "fun day" where they bring in some more lathes and folks spend the day making things together. I'll find out more along the way, no doubt.

The meeting itself was very interesting. There was a show & tell portion where a few club members showed some of their work, and a lengthy, detailed demonstration about various texturing techniques. The overall quality of work was remarkable and inspiring. There were about three dozen people at the meeting; five women ranging in age from what looked like early 20s to late 60s. A couple of the women were clearly there with their husbands, but they were equally clearly acting and seen as individual members. The other women may have been there on their own; I couldn't tell. During the business meeting part of things and the demonstration, there was frequent mention of talented female woodturners, so the group felt welcoming in that regard.

Dick, the 92-year-old from the Snow Farm class, was also at the meeting. He'd mentioned that he'd just joined; last month was his first meeting. I asked him about maybe coming over to his house sometime, seeing his workshop, and getting his help with a non-woodturning project I have in mind. I want to make a small table/plant stand from one the wood patterns I brought from Battle Creek. It's two half-rounds; I think some decorative hinges and some sort of hook'n'eye mechanism would join the pieces in an attractive manner while still making it possible to open it up and see the inside of the pattern if one wanted to. Or, technically, even take it apart and use it for its original purpose, though I doubt that I'll ever find anyone needing to cast machine parts or even that particular shape.

That sounded good to Dick. We exchanged contact info and I hope to get over visit him within the next couple of weeks.

Anybody need a candlestick?
Geri 2014
Sunday brought another wonderful day at Snow Farm. The wood turning class sped up as we all worked as quickly as we could to finish our projects. There were also fewer "everyone gather around the instructor's lathe" sessions, though there was one highly instructive "everyone gather around this student's lathe" moment while Rick demonstrated why that lathe had been quickly turned off and wasn't going to be turned back on before removing the incomplete cherry bowl being worked on. More on that after the pictures and under the cut.

I am thrilled beyond thrilled with my finished cherry bowl. Yes, I see all the things I'd try to do differently turning a third bowl -- foremost on that list is not using a 10" blank to create a 7.25" bowl. Yes, I see the learning, and what I would have done with this bowl if I hadn't run out of time to work on it. But it's entirely possible that if I'd had that time, I would have ended up without a beautiful bowl at all -- two of the five students ran into problems that damaged their cherry bowls. Two of the students accidentally destroyed their ash bowls. And only two of us went home with two finished, undamaged bowls. Curiously enough, we were the two whose cherry bowls didn't at all match the profile of what we set out to make...and both of those bowls came out completely different flavors of remarkably beautiful, especially in light of our inexperience.

So. The pictures. My cherry bowl almost done, and both bowls finished showing the tops and the bottoms. The first two photos are taking under flourescent lights, the third under 5000K daylight CFLs and whatever daylight came in from outside.

AlmostDone_UnderFlourescentWorkshopLights_2014-04-06 10.34.42
FinishedBowls_atSnowFarm_2014-04-06 15.34.28
BowlsAtHome_Bottoms_2014-04-07 16.13.34

Yes, I made those stripes with the smaller of the ancient tools that came out of the workshop at 22 Grand Blvd. My sister Sue pointed out that Great-Grandpa Charles A. Squier was also quite a woodworker and did lots of carving on the tables and other items he made. It's possible those two little tools came from his workshop rather than Grandpa Waldo Fitzgerald's. It's unlikely I'll ever know, but I know enough and that's good. What happened to that one student's cherry bowl and other tales from Sunday at Snow Farm.Collapse )

I left the class with more information about the woodworking clubs in Worcester and Springfield. At this point, what I'd most like to do is make a lot of wood shavings in the process of developing true comfort and competence with lathe tools. I don't know enough to do it safely on my own, but in the company of others who know considerably more than I do? I think I know enough to give it a try.

I also came home with a couple of Snow Farm course catalogs to share with friends and the intention to take a winter workshop class every year or two. And maybe some longer classes if any ever fit with both my budget and available time. Most of those fall during my super-busy season with work.

"Acts of Creation" post coming separately. I think that will wrap up my Snow Farm woodturning adventure. For now, at least.

Woodturning Day 2: Placeholder

Geri 2014
I'm thrilled with how the cherry bowl turned out. Pictures and more woodturning natter after I've met immediate work deadlines and slept for more than 4 consecutive hours. Monday, I hope.
Geri 2014
Decorated in woodshavings_2014-04-05 18.31.05
CherryBowl_Outside_2014-04-05 17.53.32
AshBowl_withStarterRound_2014-04-05 18.12.55

35 more photos in my Snow Farm Scrapbook Album. Clicking on embedded images doesn't automatically take you to the album anymore; there's probably a setting for that that I'll discover later. More photos to be added Sunday...or as soon after as I manage.

There are a kazillion memorable, fun moments from Saturday. "You're being...creative." AKA the instructor's kind way of saying "that's not anything like it's supposed to look like." I wasn't the only person he said it to, but I was the first. :-)

Much more woodshop natter under here.Collapse )

One last note for tonight: I didn't deliberately save any lathe tools from Daddy's extensive supply because I didn't anticipate ever using them. But two ancient, small, short-handled tools found their way into the Cardis and thus followed me home to Toad Woods. Rick is going to sharpen them up a bit for me and tomorrow I plan to add a couple of decorative cut stripes in my cherry bowl using those tools. They're obviously older than any of Daddy's woodworking tools. They were most likely Grandpa Waldo's handed on to Daddy when he was young, and maybe even a generation older than that.

AKA More Bliss. And such happy, happy memories.

Life is brighter here at Toad Woods

Geri 2014
My subject line can be attributed to the burned-out lightbulbs I replaced in the mudroom hall, kitchen, basement stairway, and living room.

Life's brighter on other fronts, too, most immediately the fact that I'll be spending Saturday and Sunday in the woodturning class at Snow Farm. I haven't made anything on a lathe since I was 12 or 13. Time spent in Daddy's workshop in the basement of 22 Grand Blvd. rank high in the fondest memories from my childhood. The deep, emotional joy permeates my life -- the aroma of freshly-cut wood, sawdust, and just plain being in a workshop...especially a wood-working's my crack. There's the high, the sense of well-being...and no downer follows. Visiting Mike Anderson's workshop in Marathon, WI, back in 2010 brought that flood of joy. And now I get to spend two days in a workshop where a dozen of us are making turned objects from wood. Heck, just sitting there listening and breathing would be sheer bliss. The learning and making are pure lagniappe in this case. But both learning and making are also lifelong sources of joy for me.

So, yeah, life is bright, indeed. And *now* I'm going to bed, so as to have some real sleep before driving and operating power tools. Will wonders never cease?

The benefits of blogging

Zeppelin Hangar
Thanks to the fact that I opened my LJ account in 2003 and thereby has a useful place to natter about things, I have the definitive answer to the question of what exterior colors were used to paint the Zeppelin Hangar ten years ago. Yes, the old cans in the basement provided some clues, but I tested several before deciding. It would have been Wales Gray, but I think that one was too dark, or too brown. Adagio? Rocky Coast? And what was that blue? That burgundy? Thanks to LJ, I know.

After years of dithering over colors to use when I finally got around to the now-overdue repainting, spending just a few minutes with my painter Stu Perry, pointed me at a brilliant small change that's likely to do the trick. The house is currently Adagio grey with Evening Sky trim and Classic Burgundy shutters and doors. As you can barely see in the icon, the deep blue Evening Sky trim lines are very narrow. They're more like pin striping around the windows and door frames.

I like the burgundy shutters and doors a lot. Don't want to change them. It's the PROmote Communications color, or as close as I could get before they started making Pantone paint. I've been somewhat bored by the gray, but after years of looking at house colors while driving around, haven't found anything else that speaks to me strongly. Not for this house, anyway. There are lots of house colors I love on different houses in different settings. But the grey works well with the roof and green trees all around.

Keeping the grey will be more economical than changing the color. Some places clearly need two coats of paint, but other areas will do well with one. Stu suggested I could change the trim color. Oh, yeah. I'm totally all over that. The dark blue brings out the blue in the Adagio. And it's boring. Clean, fine, boring.

Purple, on the other hand....

Purple pin striping, burgundy shutters & doors, oh, yeah. If there were a lot more trim, purple would go too Painted Lady, and this house isn't shaped for that. But the narrow lines of pin striping, and not a lot of it? I'm all over that. Because purple.

So when I was picking up interior samples for the stairs and hallway I'm finally having painted (a mere 10 years after elaine_brennan and I started peeling off the wallpaper), I chose some likely chips for the exterior trim.

I still need to do a test swatch, and look at it more under different lighting conditions, but the top candidate as of this afternoon is Purple Rain.

I did live in Minneapolis for 25 years, including the pertinent ones. And I'm a total sucker for names.

Back to work. More painting excitement to follow.

So it goes

It started raining Friday and continued raining all but non-stop through Sunday night. There were a couple hours of quiet with grey skies in there, but mostly there was rain. Enough to prompt a flood advisory.

So what did it start doing at dawn?

Yep. And it hasn't stopped snowing since.

In other trivia that hasn't been willing to leave my hind-brain, I was reminded of the importance of good proofreading yet again when thumbing through a 208-page, full-color, glossy "Destination Planning Guide" to promote Denver as a convention site.

On page 9, the introductory copy claims "The user-friendly Colorado Convention Center has only two levels: all 100,000 sq. ft. of meeting space, 50,000 and a 35,000 sq. ft. ballrooms; and 5,000-seat theatre on one level; and 584,000 sq. ft. of contiguous exhibit space on the other."

Pages 36-45 have the floor plans, starting out with the statement that "The Colorado Convention Center consists of just three levels." The 584,000 square feet of contiguous exhibit space is one one level, one floor up from street entrances. The street level has the 100,000 sq. ft. of meeting space, and access to the 5,000-seat theatre. And sunken below street level are the two ballrooms. The maps bear that out.

Alas, my main takeaway is that they don't even know how many levels their convention center has. And if they don't know that, why should I believe any of the other numbers in the guide? Why should I believe they'd be able to pay the necessary attention to the details of my meeting or event?

It's harsh of me, I know. It's an error in the copy that didn't get caught in whatever proofreading they did do. Everyone working on the guide is human, and, Ghu knows, I've made plenty of publication mistakes of my own. It's printed, it's done, move along. Yet the guide certainly made an impression on me, and it's far from the one they wanted it to make. I wonder how many other people that's true of.

Pepsi Max UK...

Geri 2014
...seems to be helping London prepare for the upcoming Worldcon with their Unbelievable Bus Shelter.

With a tip o'the link hat to lsanderson.



Goodyear has developed a new airship for the first time since Minneapolis in '73 became the bid it is today.

It's a combination blimp-zeppelin with a maximum of speed guessed it...73 mph.

Hey, they're even having a name the blimp contest with a day's exclusive use of the new airship to the winner! Deadline: April 4th. I suspect they're looking for something more universally recognizable than Zyx W. Vuts. Hmmm....

Anonymous quote du jour

Geri 2014
"I used to believe the ice cream truck would only play music when it was out of ice cream. Thanks, Dad."

Cracked me up.

Two pictures, two days apart

Snowstorm Gargoyle
Plow Mountain, Wednesday

It's starting to melt, but has a long, long (long) way to go. I especially like the icicles over toward the left. This is after the terraforming with the front-end loader pushed the snow (and sand) back enough (and high enough) to let the Cardis out of the garage and up the driveway.
Plow Mountain_2014-03-05

Showing off my new haircut, Friday

Selfies are hard

AKA "Selfies are hard." Note the spiff (if out-of-focus) Periodic Table of Typefaces and So You Need a Typeface flow chart behind me. And the Kansas City in 2016 hat on my head.

Happy Friday!

Y'know how cats sometimes...

Snowstorm Gargoyle
...leave their kill for their human family members?

I'm not sure I really want to know what wild animal around Toad Woods has decided I'm family. Or what other reason it had for leaving a gnawed-off deer leg at my door sometime on Monday night or Tuesday. And some other bone, too, a scapula or something similar.

When I found the deer leg Tuesday evening, I moved it and the other bone to the far side of the driveway, underneath the shrub-like tree at the outside corner. I figured I'd take some more pictures and do something more permanent with the deer remains in daylight.

But whatever left it, one of its kin, or some other scavenger removed it overnight. I suppose I should be grateful for that. Mostly, I'm just plain curious.

Coyotes seem most likely, either scavenging bones from a dead deer or actually taking one down. But bringing its food right up next to the house? Close enough that the hoof and the lower part of the leg was on the doormat?

The deer wasn't killed here -- there's no blood and I only found those couple of parts. There are lots of animal tracks in the snow across the front yard, some more than usual, but then it's not usual for snow to stick around for so long.

Mostly, I'm grateful that I noticed there was something by the door as I pulled out of the garage to run an errand Tuesday evening, then checked it out when I returned home. That was much less startling than opening the door and just finding it there.

Yes, it's March...

Snowstorm Gargoyle
...but it's also 1 measly degree friendly Fahrenheit here at Toad Woods. The lions and lambs would both be frozen solid here. Thanks to the heroine who fills my oil tank even when I haven't managed to clear a path to the back of the house (or even carved a way through the plow ridge along the drive), I'm not frozen. So long as I stay inside, that is. Fortunately, I've lots of work and more to keep me busy and then some. Now if only keystrokes and mouse clicks generated heat....

C'mon, spring! You can do it! We are SO ready for you.
Seuss character
Look what happens when you turn engineers loose. This terrific article about both resurrecting and reverse-engineering the F-1 rocket engines that powered the Saturn V is from last April, so I'm well behind the times, but, hey, the thrill never ends.

This fills me with joy. It's the perfect counterpoint to seeing Saturn Vs on display at Kennedy Space Center 13 years ago and my sadness that their time was past. Kudos to Nick Case and Erin Betts, the two liquid engine system engineers at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, AL. They spearheaded the effort to get an F-1 engine out of storage and into their workshop. Kudos as well to Tom Williams, their boss, and to everyone working on the project.

This is just the gas generator. One of the gas generators....

With a tip o'the link hat to dalesql.

What a great week

Snowstorm Gargoyle

Boskone 51 Science Speaker Bill Higgins came home from Boskone with me. The original plan was for him to stay a couple of days, spend a couple of days visiting a friend in Woods Hole, and maybe a day or two in Boston before flying back to Chicago on Sunday (as in today). Then Brother Guy and Guy's friend, Dennis, gave Bill a tour of Boston on Monday before we left, filling Bill's hope of spending some time there. Shortly after we arrived at Toad Woods, Bill picked up email from his friend in Woods Hole and learned Al's mother-in-law had died and Al understandably expected to be in North Carolina during the time he and Bill were scheduled to spend together. Bill's visit to Woods Hole turned into a day trip and even that came as a surprise as it seemed like he wouldn't get there at all. Sorry though I was to hear Al's sad news, I totally lucked out on the necessary change of plans. Bill was here for the whole week, and it's been utterly delightful. Much as I know he's glad to be heading home and Kelley, he's the sort of guest I'd gladly have stay another week or three, and I'm not just saying that because he cheerfully shovels snow. Repeatedly.

Bill's one of those friends I've liked since the moment we met, oh, who the heck knows how long ago, but also a friend I don't see all that often and didn't know all that well. Fast forward through a week filled with conversation upon conversation upon conversation, a few brief road trips, shared meals and stories, talking so much under the stars in the living room that we never did watch The History of Future Folk.

I had a fairly big work deadline and a few other projects to keep moving on, too, so the shortened week was filled with long hours at my computer. Friday afternoon, my schedule cleared enough that Bill and I headed over to Framingham for a fun visit and dinner with Mark & Priscilla Olson. Saturday Bill and Gavi met as he came along on a frame shopping expedition Gavi and I scheduled before I headed to Boskone. That was fun, too, and, as Gavi wrote in email as the Cardis was bringing Bill and me back to Toad Woods, "It was lovely seeing you, and meeting Bill. He seems like one of those rare individuals of whom the unironic phrase 'a very good sort' can be meaningfully spoken." Ah, yup.

I love it when something I expect to be a joy turns out to totally knock my socks off with how much better it is than the good time I already knew it was going to be. Bill's company this week falls into that realm. What a fine, fine time. My only regret is that it passed so quickly.

C'mon back anytime, beamjockey. Bring Kelley, too.

It's warming up...

Snowstorm Gargoyle what sayeth Accuweather?

"Warmup to Bring Flood, Roof Collapse Risk Midwest, East"


"Increasing Temperatures Turn Skyscraper Icicles to Flying Daggers"


Followed by....

"Frigid Air to Clutch Midwest, Northeast Again Next Week"


"Winter is Alive and Well Next Week"


"Blizzard to Blast Minneapolis, Upper Midwest"

That latter one is for tomorrow.

Plow guy was just by again. I went out and asked about terraforming plow mountain as it's at the point that I'm not sure we'll be able to back out to get up the drive the next time that needs doing. The next couple days of melting will probably help with that, but once the snow is piled into a mountain, it takes a major melt to shrink it away.


RIP: Blue Petal

Indian Pipe
Minneapolis fan Blue Petal's Caring Bridge page reports he died peacefully a few hours ago.

Sympathy to his family, loved ones, and friends near and far.


Snowstorm Gargoyle
And Boskone 51 Featured Musician Bill Roper, too. And pleasant as Bill's company was (as it was, indeed), I hadn't known Dave was here...and hadn't seen him in Far, Far, Far, Far Too Long. Okay, it was actually just a bit under 2 years as we were both at Minicon in 2012. But I've only seen Dave something like 3 or maybe 4 times in the last decade and the last I'd heard, he was unexpectedly in the hospital in Baltimore and while it was probably just dehydration (which it was), the last I knew they were running a few more tests and...and...and...I don't remember when we last shared a meal. More than that decade, I think. In other words, simply forEVER.

Seeing him here just made the first two months of my year. A year that's been off to something of a hard start. Color me oh, so very, very happy. Happy and well-hugged.

OMG. Dave's here.

Once a Cardis, Always a Cardis

Improbable Research Stinker
I made an unexpected trip over to Cambridge Saturday. My destination was the soon-to-be-thoroughly-renovated offices of Improbable Research. The purpose of my trip was to pick up extra issues of the Annals of Improbable Research (AIR), the magazine I've been the designer for since the beginning of 2008. Yowser, 6 years already. Neat.

Anyway, I have Intentions of sharing the treasure trove with fans at Boskone, Detcon1 (where I'm running the fanzine lounge), and FenCon XI (where I'm the Fen GoH this year – w00t!). I'm confident we can put the back issues to a multitude of improbable uses.

Chief AIRhead Marc Abrahams has seen the Cardis several times over the past 6 years, but he's never seen it in action, never witnessed how it earned its name. What happened nextCollapse )

Those of you who have seen the Cardis when fully loaded, or have followed my previous tales here about it, know there's got to be more to the story. Simply putting several heavy boxes of magazines is so SOP that it hardly merits mention, let alone any build up. But as I said, it's new to Marc. He cautioned me several times to drive carefully, allow extra braking room and such. And when he reads this, I'm confident he will shake his head in that bemused way of his as he learns what happened next.

I headed over to the NESFA Clubhouse where a pre-Boskone worksession was going on. Before I pitched in at the end of the badge lamination session or helped confirm the ribbon order was complete, I rearranged a few of the boxes in the Cardis, then added the big cooler that accidentally stayed at Deb & Mike's for the year before Rick Kovalcik took it to Arisia so James Bacon and crew could use it during the Loncon 3 and Dublin in 2019 parties. It was back at the NESFA Clubhouse, waiting for me to take it home. That wasn't all, of course. There was an 18 gallon Rubbermaid bin, and a 14 gallon one, too, both filled with Loncon 3 supplies plus kettles, trays, and more I'd loaned to James from the overflowing party closet here at Toad Woods.

Of course all 3 large items fit in the Cardis. No worries.

As I was leaving the Clubhouse, I called Deb & Mike. We've been aiming to get together for the last couple weeks, and I'd left a message on my way into town, but we hadn't connected yet. My timing was fortuitous, much as that wasn't apparent at the start of our brief conversation. "Can I call you back?" Deb asked. "We're cooking."

"Uh, sure. I'm just leaving the NESFA Clubhouse..." I'm pretty sure I paused long enough to hear things click at Deb's end before continuing "...what'cha cooking and who's coming to dinner?"

"Truly evil Welsh rarebit and asparagus" and, yes, there'd be enough for 3. With no hesitation, I said I was on my way. I might have even said that before Deb mentioned there was enough to share. Delicious food, excellent company. What's not to jump at?

After our yummy dinner and catching up a bit, I headed for home. I would have arrived shortly after 11pm if I hadn't remembered that Wegman's is open until midnight...and just how empty my own refrigerator was.

The Cardis swallowed 3 bags of groceries and 3 12-packs of soda without pause. I resisted the opportunity to go back in and by 2 more bags of groceries. There was easily room for them in the back seat....

I love my car.

Now if I only had a house of equal capacity.


9 inches so far

Snowstorm Gargoyle
Plow Guy is here making his second pass. There's an official Plow Mountain out front. At least it's not a Plow Mountain Range. Not yet, anyway.

Guess I'll find out what my snow blower is up handling soon. The "wait until it melts" strategy that worked so well a month ago doesn't appear to be an option this time. Not if I want to get to Worcester and Cambridge tomorrow, which I do.


Yep, it's snowing

Snowstorm Gargoyle
Right on schedule. I wonder how much will be on the ground when I wake up.

A personalized advertising disconnect

Snowstorm Gargoyle
Yes, I've recently used Google to search "Toyota Matrix." But that's no reason for the BBC homepage and numerous other sites to throw up Toyota Matrix ads at every opportunity. Especially ads telling me "Great deals available at your local Toyota dealer."

Toyota discontinued the Matrix here in the US with this model year. My local Toyota dealers don't have any in stock, not even any 2013 models. Great deals may well be available, but not on the car being advertised. All the ad is telling me is that its hopelessly out of date.

Canadians can still buy them, though I expect they have better options at this point. Much as I adore my Cardis, another Matrix wasn't on my list even when they were still selling them in the US. Toyota changed the model a bit a few years back and the fuel efficiency fell a few MPG in the process. There's no way I'd buy the same model with lower MPG a dozen years after buying the first one.


Geri 2014
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