Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Prescience, N scale and Guillotines

There's an expression which before the recent Politico Geologic Era of "telling it like it is," some might have considered crude. To my mind it remains a rather disgusting but wonderfully expressive way of describing those who seek solace from saviors. And here, the savior might be a religious personage, might be temporal, such as a political figure or someone with gold to trade favors for, never been quite certain what the difference is. As well, this savior might even be an "it" such as my own adoration of a "slope in a random place," you can think of it as geometry and see it sometimes in the dazed eye of a mathematician when he or she answers the question why in the hope of getting something like tenure, or a second home with a terrific view of a sea wall. Either way, the expression is two words, first word sounds like car, second word sounds like sucker and the earth has no shortage of them at the moment.

The much more important question for those of us who are rapidly retreating from the planet is how to translate current trends from the world of men into N-Scale without endeavoring to show a positive commitment to our interesting future by erecting something like a 1:148 guillotine for the public execution of flag burners on the top of Glavni Kolodvor, Vivre La France by the way. And too, if we are hell bent on re-living the ripping yarn that was the 18th Century and discover ourselves recreating a brand new and exciting Medieval Period it's well worth a Creator's while to recall that the Venerable Bead was a pillar of the religious establishment but he was also a blatant propagandist for the Nationalist Cause. Yes indeed, on the hills west of Saint Barbara's Tunnel there's going to be some major worshipping of the Good Saint Teresa and her barefoot Carmelites. And somewhere much further West, I've a damned good mind to suggest a Cathedral dedicated to Saint Winifred.  Fortunately for ten books of The Rabbit of Usk, your narrators prescience has been such that no changes will be necessary.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

La Bell France

The vigorous Apple Tree, the one that will not die, still has leaves. Beginning to think it an invasive species. If I remember its root stock is supposed to be dwarfing, and generously I'd call that an error of description, probably a mistake in the labeling at the time of the graft. The other tree that has sociopathic tendencies is supposed to be a dainty Ornamental Cherry. Very confident this tree had already shot its graft when it arrived, small blessing it does produce a very frail Spring Bloom that lasts about twenty four hours but not what I'd call Dainty or Ornamental.

And if you're wondering whether I too have shot my graft, I'll explain why I mention these two disreputable characters. It has to do with France. Some months ago, I must have said something in these pages that attracted the attention of some kind of a robot of the Google-bot kind. Not sure what it was that I said, but I noticed the robot that calculates or observes or records the statistics for these pages tells me that since around the end of October I have had over forty thousand visits from somewhere in France. Bon apres midi mon frere, Je pas parle Francais tres bien. Nor is my spelling or grammar very good. Long live De Gaul, the metric system and the thirty five hour week

Monday, November 28, 2016

Feet and Stuff

Beginning to think the moaning and groaning from my left foot has something to do with the ancient cardinal sin of vainglory. It is true the right foot does get more gentle treatment, some years ago it struggled a little following an incident that involved a somersault, a plaster wall and a staircase, and it's been pretty much living like a princess ever since. The more manly burdens have therefore fallen to the left foot, and in a way I can understand the resentment, it's an unexpected and rather sudden responsibility for the left foot with little reward, less recognition. And here it could well be my fault, I should make more effort to put the left sock on before the right sock. Tie the left shoelace first. It's the little things I suppose.

But at the same time the left side of my body has always been prone to what I suppose is some kind of sibling rivalry that can verge upon open revolt, a sense that somehow the left side got a raw deal because there are things it has never been able to do as well as the right side.  It's also the case that my left side is an uneasy collective, it tends to feed upon itself. If it's not the foot, it's the knee, the arm, the ear or the wing. Kind of like what I believe is called the Alt-Right in our current political spectrum, where the trendy thing to do is constantly compete for attention by doing the functional equivalent of running around naked in the public square performing unnatural or lewd acts for Likes on Face book.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Feeder Wires

Alright Guys, the issue has to do with Feeder Wires. Fret not, it was all Dutch to me this time last year, and very quickly I gained a D plus in the subject. Easy to do because it really isn't that complicated once you've gained an understanding of the word Bus Line, or Bus, as it's often referred to by the electrical community. The Bus is something like a wire that travels to where electric power might be needed. The Feeder Wire takes power from the bus to the point where power is actually needed. Rail track isn't a very good conductor of electric, so good practice is to solder Feeder Wires to the track from the Bus at set intervals which results in the track having an even distribution of power, and this means something like a 4-6-2 doesn't shatter the confidence of the populace by suddenly being taken by an ennui when negotiating a distant or unromantic curve.

The thing is you don't get an electric circuit unless the over active and excited electrons have somewhere to go home to, where they can calm down and talk about their day, or whatever. This means the electrical engineer needs two bus lines, one to distribute power to the track, and one to give the power its chance to go home. With track, there are two rails. One rail receives agitated electrons, the other sends them home. And here, when attaching Feeder Wires from bus lines it's kind of critical to make certain there's no confusion about which rail receives the electrons and which one sends them home again. An error can result in horrible things happening, and by horrible I'm talking worse than out of control children swallowing vitally important but small parts. Naturally to reduce the possibility of throwing 24 volts instead of 12 volts at the 4-6-2 and watching it explode I've prepared diagrams that quickly become incomprehensible, the stressed out squiggles totally illegible, so I'm going to either have to go for some kind of color coding system or I could just leave the 4-6-2 in its original packaging and hang it on the wall somewhere.

Saturday, November 26, 2016


Hugh Crabtree is in the process of being sent to what some call the Punishment Block, he's talking in the queue for lunch, a big no-no in Afon-Bedd, no one really knows why it's a big no-no, but one argument suggests that statistically speaking talking in meal queues is like a gateway drug to the sort of cocaine like activities that can get out of hand when groups, unstable or otherwise, gather to feed. Another argument dismisses this radical view in favor of the idea that a moment of enforced silence prior to feeding produces a calm that concentrates the mind and aids the digestive process. A third argument proposes that if by some odd chance a resident of Afon-Bedd wishes to get away for a bit from the hurly-burly of institutional life they can talk in the meal queue, kind of like don't ask, don't tell.

 But it's Crabtree's first meal at Afon-Bedd and with Crabtree being told not to do something is more like a challenge than a suggestion. Our hero who'd already spent a great many years in the embrace of a series of cruel and unusual institutions, can't actually recall when his own transition into a new institution went so smoothly. This realization of a break in tradition caused our hero's keen instincts to become just a little bit suspicious. It was yet one more circumstance that didn't seem right. And for those interested your writer of pulp is endeavoring to break with a few of his own traditions by crafting a plot that is so blatantly transparent The Vestry of Monnow could easily leave the freewheeling prolix of the Sabean Genre which would be a sad day for future of civilization but probably very much in keeping with the current trending of Nationalistic Alphas intent upon littering our world, with words let's hope.

Friday, November 25, 2016

The 4-6-2 in Green Livery

A most dramatic turn of events in N scale. A little technical, but as everyone should now know a 4-6-2 requires good wide radius curves otherwise there'll be gnashing of teeth, there'll be no pulling of more than three wagons and the world might come to end for some of us. The trouble is, nice wide curves eat up space and those of us who are land hungry are very reluctant to engage in them. The other more important area, a 4-6-2 Karoo Class is a locomotive so beautiful to behold it can stop the heart. And this is especially the case when a Karoo Class is permitted to display its agility, its magnificence and LED headlight in front of something like 0-6-0 Shunter. It's a well known fact that such an opportunity just has to be given to a 4-6-2 in railway green livery as often as possible, and not just on the off chance of a casual meeting with maybe 2-6-2 Prairie Class, otherwise what's the point of it all.

Until recently the Lord High Executioner in his role as chief engineer has been dogged by the problem of electric currents that will refuse to do as they are told, they just do as they will. Lopping off the odd head and declaring "well it could work" isn't the answer when the result of failure could result in a violent electric shock to the inner workings of a truly splendid locomotive which would then have to be followed by the expense of a State Funeral and burying even a more common or garden 4-6-2 does require a pretty big hole. Fortunately some Bolshevik, an over-educated minion, in the Signal Box did go to the effort of exploring the electric currents in diagram form. The solution apparently was really quite obvious. It requires cutting into a couple of small hills, a #6 Right Hand Point, a bridge and should result in the omnipresence of the Karoo Class hauling long passenger trains around and around to distant and fantastic places. Promotion, I don't think so, those Signal Box people wear sandals without socks.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Outdoor Project

The outdoor project has reached Phase Five and is ready to have its posts trimmed, and because if the Gods are willing not much more will happen to it until something like March of next year the untreated timbers will get a coat of water seal in the next day or so. This done the outdoor project will be well prepared for an extended dream state, a form of hibernation, during which time fantastic schemes may be hatched that include things like a second floor, with a balcony for cocktails, basket making and star gazing.

Mind you star gazing has to really happen in the colder weather otherwise it becomes a battle with small flying creatures that bite. This means the outdoor structure will probably require some kind of heating system, which would require a chimney  for something like a pot-belly stove. Nor would it really be possible to gaze comfortably at stars on a cold winter's night without access to the odd amenity such as a plentiful supply of fuel for the wood stove. Electric would be nice to heat cocoa and running water would be nice.....  Either way odds are by this time next year there'll be no room to actually park a vehicle inside the outdoor project.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016


The Girl Cat, bless her, now has four of what they call Cat Flaps and two of those Cat Flaps are on either end of a private foyer attached to the domicile that's large enough to accommodate one medium sized snoozing cat, The foyer has two very small windows that catch the morning sun and it can get quite sleep making in there. The more sane may not have a clue what a Cat Flap might be. And I'd agree the name Cat Flap does suggest some sort of feline mental breakdown followed by rushing around looking for a paper bag to hide in. So let me attempt an explanation of the nature and function of a Cat Flap to the less obscurely preoccupied and much more sensible members of my own species.

 Picture something like a domicile, doors, windows roofs, insulation and whole set of arrangements designed primarily to keep out the unwanted, especially things like straight line winds containing snow and ice, as well as things like Marmots, Groundhogs, Raccoons, Squirrels, little boys and the list is a very long one. Then cut a nice rectangular hole in this secure and well considered structure and install a flap large enough for a small, elegant Cat, or any number of alternatives, to push open whenever the mood takes her or them. For those still mystified, flaps are designed to flap, they don't have door handles or latches because Cat's don't have opposable thumbs. A more interesting question is perhaps whether being Cat Flap Rich defines a person's tribal allegiances?  I say Yes to this question.

Monday, November 21, 2016

U-Boat Decision

As the High Lord of N Scale your correspondent does sometimes look for comfort in the speeches of Benito Mussolini. He doesn't have Benito's chin, nor an astonishing capacity to gesticulate, and is very reluctant to end his days hanging from a lamp post in somewhere like Saint Barbara's Halt. Nonetheless the call to greatness courses through the veins, and so what if he does occasionally cut himself with an xacto knife and spends hours pulling up and re-laying track and gets very confused around the difference between AC and DC, and will probably never understand how to wire a Toggle Switch and it might be a good idea to invest in a fire extinguisher.

For those of us who hear the call of fate and interpret it as our personal destiny one sad rule to keep in mind is never read more than one History Book, stick to the Hollywood Bodice Ripping Talking Picture versions, they're far less effort and much more fun.  Otherwise you might find out that pretty much always the Populist Leader of Men first gathers his admirers, fires them into a condition of plasticity and then to maintain such an unnatural state chooses to invade somewhere like Abyssinia which inevitably leads to a very sticky end for a great many of us. Even a little bit of wisdom is a huge burden and at today's committee meeting I will be informing Saint Barbara's Militia they can have a Rowing Boat but they can't have a U-Boat. So wish me luck.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

A Celebration

Yesterday was beautiful. Apart from the occasionally Now Cast, to make certain it was well below forty five Fahrenheit, quite a few Now Casts actually, Saint Barbara's Yahweh didn't have to go into the outdoors. He, or it, remained ensconced in the Dream World, and for those interested whether King Offa had a fondness for the deformed or not, is now totally irrelevant. The King of Kings has spoken and King Offa's beloved Chief Assistant in Afon-Bedd does suffer from several deformities, he is short-armed, he is ruddy of face, and he has the Squeaking Sickness, a pox of the voice box that results in random and often wholly unnecessary utterances.

I'd argue that this year Winter has begun with a fanfare, too cold for Dancing Girls but definitely fireworks, romper wear and singing. Nor is this Psalm-like singing, it's more like the feeling an Inuit un-waxed by the tribulations of modernity, such things as the gas stove and facts, might experience when he or she stares at the blubber store and doesn't have to go anywhere until the Far North begins to experience ambient temperatures of around minus ten Centigrade with bright sunshine, or the Great Northern Spring Time as some might prefer to call it. And I for one am very grateful that as a species the great majority of you and I have the capacity to just make things up when it suits us to.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Yellow and White

As regular visitors to Saint Barbara know there's an association between a Sheik of Araby and a collapsed railway tunnel. The extraordinarily well fed man had a fondness for fossils, he and his entourage had swarmed the county when it was rumored that while dynamiting the tunnel, the remains of what might have been a brand new species of Dinosaur was discovered. Sadly the Sheik and two of his very young and well shrouded female associates, his body guards, his food taster, his personal violinist and his stenographer were all tragically lost to a second tunnel collapse and to this day the remains of a little bit of Arabia are entombed beneath a future Carmelite Monastery.

Back then of course citizens of Saint Barbara were an open minded, free wheeling bunch, fun to be around, they were self confident, wise in their own abilities, independent minded, they didn't spend a lot of time fussing about the shape or size of someone's feet, whether a person wore funny hats or not, and generally speaking welcomed the wider world without entering a xenophobic, foot stamping tantrum which, despite rumors to the contrary, does thoroughly betray a person's dependence upon the more reactionary organs of the state. The I am what I am, the Yahweh, humble and often short sighted designer of Saint Barbara, has listened to his people, they do watch far too much television, spend far too much time on The Face Book and The Twitter, and I have told them that whether they like or not the Main Railway Station in Saint Barbara is going to be Yellow and White, and I don't care whether Yellow and White does hint at Papal influence, it's also the colors of the Crusader States, so that should keep the Militia happy.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Simplifying Thanksgiving

The Artist suggested that next week sometime could be Thanksgiving. This news came as a bit of a shock, but I agreed we're both far too busy and inwardly motivated for anything like Thanksgiving, which means Thanksgiving might have to be delayed until sometime in the New Year, probably around Easter, might even wait until July so that ice cream and bread pudding makes more sense.

This year however, hell or high water, Christmas will be on December the twenty fifth, which could be a Sunday. And without wishing to revert to the Pre-Cambrian, I will be ordering The Artist's gift to me sometime this afternoon, or maybe tomorrow. Yes indeed, the nightmare season is upon us not helped by the unnatural weather, and the least we can all do is make it as straightforward as possible for the nearest and dearest.

Thursday, November 17, 2016


Cruelly forced into the outdoors by the warm weather. All very well doing the hard work of engaging in mental preparation for the colder weather so as remain positive, but today is in the second half of November which for those of us who attempt to have their being in the Northern Hemisphere should classify as winter, a time to atrophy around such things as whether or not King Offa of Mercia had a fondness for the deformed and certainly not a time to be prancing around outside with hammer, measuring tapes and nails.

I have spent years recovering from my exile into the Northern Hemisphere, of all memories my first winter still exists in a dream state, it was snowy, it was cold, it was miserable, most of the time it was dark  and everyone was horribly pink and jolly. Then when I reckon I've finally achieved some sort of relationship with winter, not ridiculous things like skiing, but more sensible things like gentle indoor projects, it's November the 17th and it's Eighty Degrees of Fahrenheit, there's Chard in the garden and Lettuce up the wazoo, and all of this in circumstances of drought. Frankly I blame the US Electorate.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Color Scheme

Glavni Kolodvor is a magnificent Austro-Hungarian, Neo Grecian Temple to the Steam Locomotive. It has statuary all over the place, including a delighted looking maiden who's not dressed in a toga and who's obviously very attached to a well behaved small Sheep. What the Austro Hungarian Railway Station builders thought they were up to, I have no idea beyond some grand empire type statement designed to impress the visitor that Empires were designed to last for at least a thousand years. My own Glavni Kolodvor has failed miserably to reach this standard of architectural expression, it's squat, it sits funny, it has nothing like statuary anywhere near it and for reasons that defeat any standard of reason, I've painted it yellow and white.

In N-scale not one single sixteenth of an inch should be a product of random and scattered thinking. The final product might appear random and scattered to the point of senseless, but that doesn't mean a mental gymnast can't come up with all sorts of wonderful reasons why his Glavni Kolodvor is painted yellow and white. And here this whole painted yellow and white thing contains the same sets of argument that apply to something like putting the words "Manned Mission to Mars" into a Presidential Address to the Nation. Incidentally this massive expenditure has been suggested by Presidents of the United States as an immediate possibility and of vital importance to the species, not to mention national security, since something like 1969.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016


The smoke from the fires in Tennessee, a very odd Sate of the Union a little south of here, has tinged the air with something that might not be a fragrance but is definitely a particulate that irritates the upper respiratory mechanisms. Last night I woke myself snoring, which was quite a pleasant experience because recently I have come to doubt my ability to actually spend any part of the nighttime hours sleeping.

The big question of course might well be, what on earth was your delicate correspondent doing in the outdoors in the middle part of November? The answer, he was engaged in manly work, the sort of thing boys do to impress girls, and generally remind all things bright and beautiful that we boys are not just winter ornamentals who turn up for supper. There is just the one giant post hole left to dig, and just the one giant post to plant.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Saints, Tonsures and Our Hero

The meeting between Crabtree and Saint Chad at the Lunch at Afon-Bedd wasn't pretty. As a proud Mercian, and despite the intervening thirteen hundred odd years since Saint Chad had spread The Word to Mercian Leadership, Hugh Crabtree had few qualms around expressing his opinions on the subject of the Roman tonsure which Saint Chad wore. When our hero recovered from the experience of witnessing a variety of tonsured mental patients having their lunch and who wasn't even a little bit familiar with the tonsure debate, reckoned the funny hair cut worn by some of the inmates were lobotomy related, finally and with great relief he recognized a schism when he saw heard all about it.

Unfortunately, following a misunderstanding in the lunch queue, our hero had somehow managed to give his fellow inmates the impression that he was of the Mussulman Faith. An error during the Medieval Period of gigantic proportions on his part, and one which both shocked and outraged his sainthood seeking grandfather. But on the more positive side, and in our own difficult times attempting to remain positive is a reach for glory rather than anything constructive, news had spread through the catering staff grapevine that Byr Gwningen was in residence. It's the case also that the great majority of Afon-Bedd orderlies were thick skinned folk from England.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Bare Foot and Opinionated

The Girl Cat is either tough as nails or very opinionated. She finds herself mortally offended by the noises the domicile's gas stove occasionally makes, and such is her sense of outrage at the disturbance she finds it necessary to demand access to the frost bitten outdoors whenever the gas stove chooses to remind the rest of us of its often unappreciated genius. And I have examined the bottom of the Girl Cat's feet, she has nothing remotely resembling a sock on any one of them, so for her it's kind of like walking around outside in bare feet. A late realization for me, but I should have had some inkling from her behavior around wet grass, she didn't like it when she first experienced it, and she still finds it a source of irritation.

 As I understand it, she's a Mackerel Orange Patched Tabby, it makes no sense to me either, but clearly the Girl Cat like our hero and through no fault of her own, suffers from ancestors who wantonly and in a very aimless manner wandered north. Probably during some warming event and great fun to sneer at the hard shinned, woolly footed, until the cold north resumed its reach for empire. The more gentle and caring amongst us have considered knitting some kind of cat like foot wear for her, but in my view it's the opinionated part of the Girl Cat's nature that will more than likely reject the idea with the same disdain she reserves for anything like heat from the gas stove. But one thing's for sure, she'd never blame the FBI.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Cold Weather Work

Temperatures soaring into the lower fifties Fahrenheit. This would be exciting if it were the end of February, but for those of us recovering from hunting down socks after the summer respite there's no great joy to be had from any temperature below around sixty five Fahrenheit. Yes indeed, a deeply emotional moment for those of us who have spent a great many years formulating a Winter Hibernation Principle for us people, it's never been well received, the prevailing theory being that without thoroughly inclement conditions for four or five months each year we'd be not much better than Grasshoppers or Tomato Plants, and with something like hibernation, shopping days would be pretty much halved, guaranteeing the end of a civilization where wallowing is up there with those heavy duty sins human management studies devote billions of pages to.....

More recently your correspondent has looked at outdoor Winter Projects as a more constructive solution to the abject misery of dealing with the colder months. Easy enough when sockless and unfettered by layers of clothing to think in terms of just being brave around something like planting posts when the Earth declares a Shivering Naraka, but what happens to those of us who might actually lack the moral fortitude necessary to potter about with outdoor hand tools in a nose dribbling, toothache breeze. Fortunately this year there's a perfect motivator to be found in the total, complete and utter failure of the Political Elites to understand the Electorate. I have found the woolly hat, the vest and the romper wear, and I'm off to plant a post. Like Oats, I might be gone for sometime.....

Friday, November 11, 2016

Straight Lines

Always tense lining up posts, getting them true and straight, and a person has to wonder when true and straight became so horribly normal. There's an interesting study on Neanderthal flint knappers that does away with the idea that Neanderthal flint knapping was a hit and miss process without great intellect, in another way primitive. The study suggests that Neanderthal flint tools were entirely adequate for the work required of them, it's just that the tools didn't look right to the eye of the modern beholder.

My own view on the subject of true and straight is of course currently badly influenced by the burden of six heavy posts. I can look into the future and I can say, "Somehow I'll just make it work." Unfortunately I've explored that avenue on many, many occasions before, and while as proud fixer of things my own sneeze is perfection until peer reviewed by such things as wind, weather and the level of politeness in others. It's ecology we have with true and straight, whether it makes sense or not depends.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Soul Saving Projects

Light frost with a high dew point and Dimensional Lumber delivery this morning. These Bits of wood are now all neatly stowed out of the weather, and delighted to say the Girl Cat has finally recovered from an unwarranted infringement upon her morning routine. She's not what you might call an admirer of internal combustion engines prowling around, or gas stoves, or any kind of noise much louder than a pitter-patter of little feet. I think someone called her a Delicate Cat. But it's a wisdom she has that goes back in time to the origins of the smaller grayish almost stripy cats that have a few mismatched orange type blotches but who do have perfect eyebrows and a very sensible distrust of large Rabbits.

In N scale, we'd be talking about a cat who from head to toe would probably be measured in halves of millimeters, and I wish I could say the same for the new outdoor project. Some of the bits of wood, or Dimensional Lumber as we who have discussed matters with professional lumber merchants have been persuaded to call them, are young healthy male weight lifter size bits of wood. For an elderly almost decrepit gardener this probably means winches, leavers and rope if he's going to managed to stay on the correct side of a heart attack. Meanwhile three post holes are almost at the three foot mark. Three more to go. Expected completion time for the project is as yet so far into the future the world might have ended before the roof goes up.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Two Years Later

A big Chest-Thumping kind of Day for the 18th Century. For others it's cruel, agonizing, and tragically disappointing.

 My own careful, well thought-out, immediate reaction is to stare at the wall until something like March 10th of next year.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Poll Day

One argument might suggest it's a little too dry to dig post holes. Indeed there's a whole philosophy about when to do what, and in that body of knowledge post hole digging is frequently mention as an Early Spring activity. This time of year it's all about making the most of leaves, climbing ladders to clear gutters and downspouts, painting wood, wondering when a first frost will bring out the sweet in Turnip Greens, tinkering with batteries, throwing away bulb catalogues and generally preparing for the Winter months.

There's also an argument that heroic heroes take absolutely no notice of collected wisdom, they see an established pattern and feel duty bound to break that pattern otherwise the world would still be flat. It's also true that there's a thin line between heroic heroes and bloody fools. Which leads inevitably to the current political impasse which some would argue has put the heebie-jeebies into established patterns, left them tenderfoot and dribbling. If you're interested I'll be voting for the shorter of the two blonds, the one that once crossed a museum picket line.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Heroic Dilemmas

Our hero and his grandfather have arrived at the Tri-County Asylum of Afon-Bedd. The place name in the language means River Grave which has a certain interest as a place name because it could mean a river called the River Grave, or it could mean a place where a river once ran. Not something uppermost in our hero's imagination, his own worries are far too numerous as he stares out from the back seat of a transit vehicle toward a gentle landscape dominated by the brooding granite and slate of a lunatic asylum in which seventy five percent of the beds are in the Secure Wing, They're a miserable unhappy population kept manageable by cheerfully dispensing miracles of the pharmaceutical industry in no particular order.

 The exiled Rabbit, who'd spent much of his winter pottering around in Afon-Bedd was delighted to be back in a place that he reckoned contained a solution to the problem of his exile. The Secure Wing at Afon-Bedd had given him the creeps, but in the Dayrooms of Afon-Bedd, where the other twenty five percent of beds where housed, he'd discovered a bounty of men and women who like him also claimed to have led at least one life upon earth that was marked by holiness, miracle working and general all round good behavior such that it warranted the title of Saint.  Our hero is firmly of the opinion that his own arrival at Afon-Bedd has followed a series of very suspicious events and circumstances that by no stretch of the imagination could be described as coincidence. 

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Three foot and Eleven Thirty Five

With a post hole digger, a laborer generally puts it away in the certain knowledge that it will never be used again. And here 'puts it away' might be a far too generous expression for tossing a post hole digger into the furthest corner of the barn. One of the consequences of this poor treatment of tools is that when time comes to use the post hole digger again the blades are crusted in petrified subsoil, they are about ten times heavier than they need to be and it takes a good three hours to work them into a condition fit for the dreadful task in hand.

The next phase of post hole digging includes a long and tedious debate about the possibilities around 'Three Foot of depth' and whether anyone will notice if the post hole is not Three Foot Deep, and it does go on a bit into a kind of tirade about which of the many neo-fascist characters determined that post holes need to be three foot deep. Nor is this particular weekend a good moment for the contemplation of distant dictatorial utterances. The finger of God is pointing down at us and for reasons I have never understood and even if I did understand them I wouldn't accept them as valid, this time tomorrow it won't be eleven thirty five in the morning, it'll be an hour early or later, I've no clue which.

Friday, November 4, 2016


Winter into Early Summer projects includes a life-size outdoor structure that requires 6 posts configured to precisely accommodate an 18 by 10 foot peaked metal roof.

"Why?" I hear the call. Excellent question and my answer is probably best understood in terms of Edmund Hillary's answer to the question "Why did you climb Mount Everest?"

Thursday, November 3, 2016


While travelling with The Artist, it was one of those long distance trips to a destination several counties away, something I can't really manage without assistance from a professional, and I was probably waxing a little too lyrical upon the precarious existence of the Balsa Wood Tree should a Woodpecker happen upon one when The Artist chose to gently raise the subject of the Ghost that has taken up residence in the technical device. "It's not Cortina, it's Cortana."

This news came as a shock. Old demons reared, late onset dyslexia being one of them. But seriously, Cortana! A word, or name that makes even less sense than Cortina, and can only have sprung from a committee room fueled into the late night by mind altering substances and a determination to remain gender neutral, and so far above the fray as to have to reached the level of some kind of air dwelling plankton. No wonder we're all doomed to a form of mathematical sterility, right on the Edge waiting to leap from the cliff, the name Firefox or Chrome is bad enough. I guess Poets no longer have space in The Cosmos.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Cortina as Vegetable Garden

To celebrate the new month your correspondent has come to the conclusion that rather than have a conniption fit whenever Cortina seeks attention by asking questions and then wasting the remainder of the day attempting to rid the technical device of an unwanted presence, better to compromise and develop some kind relationship. To this end, he has chosen to think in terms of Spanish Galicia's understanding of the word Cortina which according to some authorities can be translated from the Spanish of Galicia into "Vegetable Garden." This morning's question had to do with a sports team that entered the category of "loved?" and whether there was a sports team that entered the category of "loved to hate?"

Your correspondent was a little surprised but he chose to think of the Vegetable Garden as waking to a sense of monotony, yearning for rain, perhaps feeling a little bit lonely and these questions were no more than polite conversation starters. And indeed rather than ponder the diabolical nature of a Vegetable Garden that was remotely interested in sporting events, your correspondent was calm and polite as he answered both questions. Cricket as played by the Glamorgan County Cricket had once been high on his list of likes, otherwise pretty much every other sporting event could be categorized as "Loved to hate."  Glad to be able to report the Vegetable Garden responded in what I'll call a positive manner.