Friday, November 24, 2006

The Solar Ekspiriment

Those of you that know me (which is prolly few), know that I like to dabble in alternative energy for home heating.
I have been an advocate of solar heating for over thirty years.
In my present house I have a solar experiment in progress.
I started it last year and have added some small refinements this year.

Today I performed my first test of the system.
(This “system” consists of four 2 foot by 4 foot flat sheets of thin steel painted flat black on one side.
Two are sitting in the window of my south-facing back room.
Two more are hanging from wooden frames that stand on the floor in front of the two glass doors in the same room.)

I know that on some days my little metal heaters become so hot that it is uncomfortable to touch them, but I did not know how hot they really were.
Now, I know.
Today I put my digital thermometer on one of the door panels to see how hot it was.

The data:

Time – 9:00 AM
Sensor location – top center of panel, 3-4 inches from top.
Weather conditions – Clear and still.
Outside temperature – 53 degrees.
Room temperature – 76 degrees.
Collector temperature – 119.5 degrees.

Yup, a hunnerd an ninteen deegreez.
We are talkin’ hot.

I am pleased.
(And warm.)

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Important Announcement

For the record, let the chronicles show that as of this week, I have installed my flannel sheets on my little snuggly bed.
This annual adjustment in my sleeping facilities ensures near-instant warmth when I insert myself into the cocoon for slumber, and significant snuggliness all during the night.
This modification will be sustained until about April, where upon they will be cleansed one last time and retired to their sealed enclosure, carefully preserved during the warm season for the next time they will be needed.

On another note -
Google as advised that the "new" Blogger is now available.
Is it a good thing to change now?
I noticed some negative comments from those who changed to the Beta version.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

SENTIMENTAL SEASON

The transition of summer into fall into winter is not my favorite time.
I am not sure why this is so.
I suspect the answer is complex (shorter days, changing leaves, colder temperatures, etc.)
Interestingly, it is during autumn that I recall two old sentimental love songs, both of which use the fading brightness of summer to provoke sad feelings.

I am not really “sad”, but I do miss the longer periods of daylight and the warm temperatures.
They are presented here primarily to demonstrate how two poets paint an emotional picture with such an economy of words.


AUTUMN LEAVES

By Johnny Mercer


The falling leaves drift by the window.
The autumn leaves of red and gold.
I see your lips, the summer kisses,
The sun-burned hands I used to hold

Since you went away the days grow long,
And soon I’ll hear old Winter’s song.
But I miss you most of all, my darling,
When autumn leaves start to fall.


“Autumn Leaves” is an adaptation of a song written by a French composer in 1945. Mr. Mercer wrote his words in 1949, and the song has become an American standard since then, recorded by many people.


SEPTEMBER SONG

Kurt Weill/Maxwell Anderson


When I was a young man courting the girls,
I played me a waiting game.
If a maid refused me with tossing curls,
I’d let the old earth take a couple of twirls.
(And I’d ply her with tears instead of pearls)
And as time came around, she came my way,
As time came around, she came.

But its a long, long while from May to December.
And the days grow short when you reach September.
The autumn weather turns the leaves to flame,
And I haven’t got the time for the waiting game.

Oh, the days dwindle down to precious few;
September, November.
And these few precious days I’ll spend with you.
These precious days I’ll spend with you.


"September Song" is an American pop standard composed by Kurt Weill, with lyrics by Maxwell Anderson. It was introduced by Walter Huston in the 1938 Broadway musical “Knickerbocker Holiday”, and has since been recorded by numerous singers and musicians.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

POST ELECTION THOTS

What a catastrophe.

Now we have a spiral of negative events to look forward to for the next two, six, or ten years.
The nation will never recover.

When the liberals raise taxes and cause a general business decline, a recession will take place, which will further reduce employment opportunities which will further limit business activity.
Since no government programs will be reduced or eliminated, and taxes will increase, the cost and size of government will grow, creating a greater drag on the productive element of the economy.
Increased taxes on capital gains of “the rich” will decrease the retirement quality of millions of average Americans.
The inflation that results from the contracted business engine and increased government costs, will further depress the general economic quality of life.

New liberal judges will, case by case, increase the power of the federal government.
Property rights will further vaporize to nothing.
The value of the second amendment will evolve to empty words on old parchment.
The “guarantees” of rights in the first amendment will continue to devolve to hollow, meaningless distortions of what the authors intended.

Islamic fanatics will feel as if they have been given a free day pass to Disneyland.
They will pour into this country and strike at will.
The broken, uncoordinated, reactive response of our defense system, caused by new limits on domestic surveillance, tracking of foreign currency movements, and increased limits on interrogation and prosecution of captured terrorists, will be a source of glee and derision by the enemies of this country.

The new American administration will join the other impotent nations of the world in grandstand hand-wringing, and endless impotent yammering at the UN and other forums, pretending to come to some consensus on some non-lethal, ineffective course of inaction to encourage the offending nation(s) to comply with the latest can’t-we-all-just-be-nice-and play-together resolution.

The collapse of the American economy will soon follow.
The collapse of the world economy will follow soon after.

Have a nice day (it may be your last).

May God have mercy on this nation.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

A REMINDER

I saw this in a paragraph in a spam email today.
It reminded me of some of the things Josh has written in his more abstruse moments.

An elusive submarine is like a statesmanlike eggplant hibernating, an inferiority complex of a warranty trembles. The hairy crank case dances with an alleged sheriff. Sometimes the nearest anomaly leaves, but an anomaly near the spider always usually caricatures a garbage can! Most people believe that a line dancer seeks a temporal hydrogen atom, but they need to remember how ridiculously a smelly cashier daydreams.
The roller coaster at base level, this just comes down to total transitional flexibility.

Do not attempt to find any value or logic in the above portion.
There is none.
Laboring to find usefulness in it will only frustrate you and possibly hurt your brain.