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Vivaldi!

No, not this guy (although I love him!  Sang this in the (award-winning) high school choir!)

In my ongoing search for a stable, secure, fast, user-friendly browser (come to think of it, this applies to my ongoing search for a woman, as well!  :-)  )  I came across a new browserVIVALDI.

From the same folks who brought us the now-defunct browser Opera, it claims versatility, speed, stability and low memory use.

What more could a gun blogger want?

I’ve been using and tweaking it for a little over three weeks now, and am still impressed.

Will advise if any major ‘bumps-in-the-road’ appear.

(FTC – this is FREE, they give me nothing.  Go suck eggs, or something!)

Taking Care of Business

Some of you may remember I often wear a built-up shoe, due to my leg disability.  ( AKA ‘Ed’ – the really big shoe!)

And I wear ‘diabetic’ socks (because I’m diabetic) and use a ‘sock thingy‘ to put them on (because some ‘normal’ body bending is prohibited.

In recent years, because of my various limitations, I’ve discovered I prefer the use of a raised toilet seat.  When it is necessary for me to, uh, sit.

I had one at the old house, but it was made for a round toilet.  J’s home has the elongated model toilet.  So, when I moved in here, it was necessary to purchase a properly-sized version.  Which I did, at a pharmacy in East Phoenix.

Time has passed, as has much bathroom use.  And, in spite of repeated attempts to keep the new device clean and sanitary, it has become worn and not-so-much. (I know – TMI!)

It became time to purchase a new version.

Of course, this is not as easy as it sounds!

First, a visit to the many (five) local drug stores didn’t work.  Either they only stocked the round models, or none at all.

AHA!  How about Amazon or Ebay?  The purveyors of all things via shipping to one’s home?  Numerous choices, brands, models and prices abounded.  Some marked ‘may fit some elongated seats’, others round only.  And some cleverly worded to advise they fit the round models, but may fit some elongated with some modification.  Further research was required.

And the current seat wasn’t getting any cleaner! 😦

I spent many hours reading purchaser commentary.  Many of which were of no help.

And pricing, unfortunately, was also a consideration.  I am on disability, and spending over $200 to raise the whole commode with a shim was not an option!

But, my patience and research skill were finally rewarded!  We received the new, properly-sized (and clean!) seat yesterday!  Obtained at a reasonable price.

I will just have to be more diligent about keeping it clean…seat

Phteven

Because I’ve not guffawed in a while, and need to…

77b5468af296a7c49458

h/t Wirecutter

Doctor Visit And Internet Aftermath

A couple of weeks ago, I made one of my semi-annual doctor visits.  Having many maladies including diabetes and neuropathy make this a requirement.  To see ‘where I am’ with regard to my overall health and make certain my medications are up to date.

My numbers were ‘okay’ (same weight as 6 mo. ago (maintaining my lowest weight in years!), low bp from meds, good A1c, good fasting blood sugar, low PSA), but my doc did ‘recommend’ taking fish oil supplements, as my bad cholesterol number was up.

I had taken some before, but stopped because they made me belch what tasted like aquarium water!

But, I found a non-belching version on Amazon, and am now taking it!  Thus far, success!

So, I was feeling pretty good about myself.

And, I was doing my bit, looking at stuff online (always dangerous).

And found THIS:

Español

Standard Measurements View Metric Measurements
Your Height:
(feet) (inches)
Your Weight:  
(pounds)
Your BMI:
BMI Categories:
Underweight = <18.5
Normal weight = 18.5–24.9
Overweight = 25–29.9
Obesity = BMI of 30 or greaterThe BMI TablesAim for a Healthy Weight:
Limitations of the BMI
Assessing Your Risk
Controlling Your Weight
Recipes

And according to this, I remain OBESE!  (Just barely)

Sigh.

Gov’t Just CAN’T Leave Well Enough Alone!

As recently posted by the lovely and talented Tamara

The .gov giveth and the .gov taketh away…

So, with the brewing industry having finally (mostly) bounced back from Prohibition, and small craft breweries having sprung up all over, you just knew there was some way the feds could screw up a good thing, didn’t you?

Small breweries will have to spend hundreds of dollars per beer to analyze the nutritional value of each type sold.

“A good analysis [will cost] probably somewhere between the $500-$1,000 range of what I’ve seen. Then multiply it across the styles that you have,” said Lawinski.

And at a thousand dollars a pop, that could keep unique and seasonal brews from making it to your favorite watering hole.

I’m thinking the BATFE is seeing the handwriting on the wall, and we’ll see a sharp upturn in revenooers chasing moonshiners as well!  After all, Eliot Ness & Co. wants to keep their jobs!

Yep.  Government.

It continues to be all about control…

S***** Shootings

There was yet another s***** shooting Thursday morning at Northern Arizona University, in Flagstaff.  One student was killed.  Three injured.  For once, a suspect was arrested.  Turns out, it was the result of dispute between frat boys, not some random wacko as we are getting used being directed to hearing about.

And this is my point.  WHY is this being reported as another s***** shooting?  Would it have had the same reportage off campus?  Or if they were simply young men who were NOT in school?  And WHY are ‘we’ (the media) focused on s*****s, in particular?  And shootings altogether?

There are certainly more potential victims in shopping malls.  In hospitals.  OH, the age factor – innocent (college) youth.  How about day-care centers?

And other physical assaults.  Knives.  There have been numerous knife assaults on people in China.  And knife crime is rampant in the U.K.  Bombs?

These are in no way suggestions.

Is it the mass murder possibility that draws our attention?  Gun free zones (like Fort Hood – NOT a school)?

In many jurisdictions, possessing a firearm on a school campus is verboten.  Except by the ‘authorities’, of course.  We have seen how well that system has worked.

Using the moniker s***** is much the same as the term g** violence.  It draws attention to a specific venue and tool, to exclusion of all others!  Skewing the statistics.

And, recent FBI statistics show that a large increase in legal firearms ownership has decreased crime.  (I put ‘legal’ in there to exclude Chicago, wherein there were many more shootings and fatalities over the past XX weekends.  Involving gangs and stolen firearms.

Pick a weekend.

And most of those involved B**** on B**** violence, as long are we’re being exclusive.

But, ‘we’, ‘the media’ are reluctant to mention that…

I guess it’s considered racist.

The Great Escape

(Sadly, not the exceptional book by Paul Brickhill, nor the film based on it by John Sturgis)

I rent-a-room from my ex-gf J.  We dated a few years ago for about four years, and have remained friends.  Hell, she offered me a room in which to land when I lost my home!

The point being, we have been acquainted for going on eleven years(!)  And I with her menagerie – a smattering of chihuahuas and cats.  Some of whom have passed on (Mike was a terrific boy kitty!).   Others remain, and continue to age.

Fooling us into complacency.

The drill used to be to make certain the gate from the back yard into the parking lot was secure, because DYLAN could escape.  And has.

When I first met Dylan (which I privately spell Dillon – gun folk will get it), she was three, and very animated and active.

And she did get loose a couple of times, running willy-nilly, constantly checking for pursuers over her shoulder and laughing.  She was a rescue dog, and had probably lived on the street for some time.  Of course, the main fear was she’d run into the street and get killed.

Now, she’s going on 15-years-old, and has an arthritic back leg.  Spends most of her time sleeping, sometimes with one eye pealed for the cats or the puppy.  She moves kinda slow.

We were alerted by the (evil) HOA to keep our back gate unlocked (an impossibility, due to the spring-loaded lock) lest they need access to make ‘authorized’ repairs and improvements.  For a specific three day period.  And we were used to the gate being closed and secure.

So we had to leave it ajar for the three days.

I wasn’t worried.  Dylan could barely walk, and D.J. (the happy boy idiot dog) wouldn’t leave, regardless. And Lola (the puppy) generally used paper inside by the back door.  (She was a showgirl, ya know!)

Part of the morning routine was to check the backyard for maintenance folk, close the gate, THEN let the critters out.  But the habit, based on years of programming, was just let them out.

You can see where this is going, can’t you?

I let them out, then looked up to see the gate still ajar about a foot.  I wasn’t worried.

Then, Dylan looked at me and bolted out the gate like a shot!  I quickly ran (well, relatively quickly) and called to her.  There she was, as if she were again three, running away, looking over her shoulder at me.

And laughing.

I let D.J. back inside, secured Lola in her kennel and yelled to J that Dylan was loose.  She ran out back with her car keys.  I searched the opposite direction on foot.

J. is asthmatic.  Going to her car is her best bet.  I’m crippled.  Hobbling slowly after a very fast puppy old lady dog is the best I could do.

Dylan did her best to stay about 60 feet ahead of me, even taking time for a ‘rest stop’ – just to mock my pursuit!  J. drove around the parking lot slowly, searching.  After about 15 minutes, I chased her to Judy, who scooped her up into her car and went home!

She ended up running a few hundred yards.  Which I ended up walking.  Slowly and painfully.

The important things are Dylan is back home safe, Judy is breathing okay, and I have additional pain medication.

Here is Dylan, after her little ‘adventure’.

20150922_191529

BITCH!

Love Of Lovecraft

JDZ (Never Yet Melted) waxed on (and off) regarding (H)oward (P)hillips Lovecraft, dark science fiction/fantasy author, bigot extraordinaire and photophobe.  Below:

H.P. Lovecraft: Too Popular to be Ignored, Too Un-PC to be Acceptible

, , ,

HP-Lovecraft-by-Lee-Moyer
H.P. Lovecraft by Lee Moyer.

Philip Eil, in the Atlantic, contemplates with unease the posthumous rise to fame and pop culture ascendancy of the visionary horror pulp writer H.P. Lovecraft.

Lovecraft, you see, was not just a pulp writer. He was a passionate, nearly hydrophobic racist and anti-Semite, whose letters are absolutely filled with expressions of distaste for the presence, appearance, physiognomy, and even the odor, of Jews, Negroes, Asians, and persons of Southern European origin. The sight (and the smell), when encountered on city streets, of the result of 1900-era mass immigration could make the Mayflower-descended Lovecraft literally physically ill.

Hence, the dilemma troubling Mr. Eil: today’s American establishment culture faithfully worships at the altar of fame and success, but it simultaneously wants to cast out and obliterate anyone or anything incompatible with its own fanatically egalitarian ideology. Some pretty serious chin-stroking is in order here.

[N]o tale of posthumous success is quite as spectacular as that of Howard Phillips Lovecraft, the “cosmic horror” writer who died in Providence, Rhode Island, in 1937 at the age of 46. The circumstances of Lovecraft’s final years were as bleak as anyone’s. He ate expired canned food and wrote to a friend, “I was never closer to the bread-line.” He never saw his stories collectively published in book form, and, before succumbing to intestinal cancer, he wrote, “I have no illusions concerning the precarious status of my tales, and do not expect to become a serious competitor of my favorite weird authors.” Among the last words the author uttered were, “Sometimes the pain is unbearable.” His obituary in the Providence Evening Bulletin was “full of errors large and small,” according to his biographer.

Nowadays, it’s hard to imagine Lovecraft faced such poverty and obscurity, when regions of Pluto are named for Lovecraftian monsters, the World Fantasy Award trophy bears his likeness, his work appears in the Library of America, the New York Review of Books calls him “The King of Weird,” and his face is printed on everything from beer cans to baby booksto thong underwear. The author hasn’t just escaped anonymity; he’s reached the highest levels of critical and cultural success. His is perhaps the craziest literary afterlife this country has ever seen. …

My feelings on Lovecraft—as a bibliophile, a lover of Providence history, a Jew, a fan of his writing, a teacher who assigns his stories—are complicated. At their best, his tales achieve a visceral eeriness, or fling the reader’s imagination to the furthest depths of outer space. Once you develop a taste for his maximalist style, these stories become addictive. But my admiration is always coupled with the knowledge that Lovecraft would have found my Jewish heritage repugnant, and that he saw our shared hometown as a haven from the waves of immigrants he saw as infecting other cities. (“America has lost New York to the mongrels, but the sun shines just as brightly over Providence,” he wrote to a friend in 1926.)

I haven’t made peace with this tension, and I’m not sure I ever will. But I have decided that perhaps he’s the literary icon our country deserves. The stories he conjured, in many ways, say as much about his bigotry as they do his genius. Or, as Moore writes, “Coded in an alphabet of monsters, Lovecraft’s writings offer a potential key to understanding our current dilemma.”

Indeed!

Eventually also, we shall dissect Charles Beaumont, assuming I can get my soul essence back above ground, from whence Mr. Lovecraft’s character’s liked to dwell.

All hail Cthulu!

Personally, I like dark.  I like intense.  I like Poe.  The works of Charles Fort.  I don’t read as much as I should.  And currently, I’ve been sticking to history and politics.

Now I will leave you, with homage to H.P. here in this Phoenician Sun, I remember the cool air… 

A Last-Ditch Knife

My roomie’s birthday was recently.  Last year, I had no funds, so we went out to dinner, and I grew a beard (she’s a hairdresser).  (NOT in the same night!)

I didn’t know what I was going to do this year – then I saw THIS on Gearhog!

mantis2

It’s a Mantis Cyclops knife.  Worn on a neck chain, it’s deployed by putting a finger through the center and pulling.  The separates the knife from the chain, and opens the hawk-shaped blade!

mantis3

The circular sheath is aircraft-grade aluminum; the ‘key’ (attaching the knife to the chain) is titanium!  It is quite strong, and very light.

And stealthy…

FORTUNATELY, my roomie collects knives – she always has two or three in her purse (along with the tac flashlight and Nighthawk, of course!)

This could add another option.  (I got one for myself, as well!)

AND, it’s made in Taiwan, not the PRC!  :-)

(FTC – look elsewhere.  I paid for them both.  Gearhog and Mantis have given me bupkis.)

Browsers, Again (Sigh)

Well, it must be that time of year, again.

Or of the month.

I’ve having difficulty with my browser.

AGAIN!

I did find I was having ‘issues’ with Comodo Dragon, and Comodo Ice Dragon, and FireFox.

(FireFox is my favorite.)

SO, I’m back to using Opera, which is iffy, at best….

But, it is working better than the others, currently.

It’s always something.

Sigh.

I cannot afford a new machine, have a good router, like Windows 7, and have good malware and security software.  But simply cannot stay ahead of the grade school kids who like messing with ‘the system’!

(The GOOD NEWS is I can leave comments on Laginappe’s Lair again!)

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…

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