Something to Dream About Tomorrow

From (NOT) Neil deGrasse Tyson's Tumblr account

Nativity Play

The stream from the National Library of Ireland is the best on the Commons, if you ask me. This is the cast from a Nativity play from 1930. Can you map all the players to a character from the traditional Nativity that you're familiar with? I cannot.

Dirigible over Tamarama, 1908, Hall & Co.

I promise this blog won't become all indicommons all the time, but I wanted to move my rant off the top of the page.


I still think that the lack of a process for pseudonymity -- this fear of anonymity that's rampant in the community -- does more to quash open and honest discourse than anything else I can think of. Usually it's because of philosophy, but sometimes it's because of the scale of the technological stumbling blocks placed in the way.

Or maybe I'm just a grump.

I like to think I'm a fairly tech-savvy guy. I am a software developer working for a SaaS company, so I do a lot with web-stuff all day long. Except when I'm doing people stuff. At any rate, I tried to ask a question about the environmental impacts of the gasifier project over on Yubanet. It might be a worthy project. I might want to give it money. I wasn't trying to be negative; I was seriously considering adding money to the pot. I don't care if the environmental impact is a wash, I just don't want to support something that adds to our air problems. So I asked.

The problem is that Disqus, the commenting system over there, decided my name was Anon. When I went back to see if there were any responses, I saw that it had done this. I also saw that this was against the site's policy. Well, so, I tried to add another comment with my name properly in there. Disqus decided I was still Anon. So I pointed that out and left.

Today, all my comments are gone.

And so I'm too irritated to try to add any more comments. Why waste my time if their system still might not take my comment? If the problem is mean comments, then delete mean comments. With anti-anonymity, you still have a human having to read the things to decide that "Reinettesenum" is a name. If I have to put my name down as "Alan Smithee," does that really make your system work?

North San Juan

I went over to North San Juan yesterday. A little over a week ago, I went over to celebrate my cheat day at Toki's Fountain, but the whole town seemed to be shut down without power. It was a stormy day and we are only talking about a block or so of a town, but still. So I was hoping to make up for it yesterday, but when I got there, Toki's had its metal shutters drawn down. There was no sign or notice. Is Toki's gone?

I sure hope not.

On the other hand, it looks like Peterson's Corner might have reopened.

Tubby in a Hoodie

I put Tubby in my hoodie. He is not happy.

Maybe he's afraid he'll be shot.


A Million Monkeys Typing described this ad as "hilariously sad," which pretty much sums it up.

Have you looked into the request for donations to the GEK project, yet?

No. 13. Hotel and Railway Station at Topeka (1873)

Another picture from the indicommons project. The station looks a bit different from the one an early Wee Toaty Explorer visited.

Commitment in Boulder

This one is an inside joke for me. This is supposed to be a Marine Corps Drill Instructor holding a burndown chart.

People who come across this on the streets of Boulder will have no more idea what he's doing sitting on top of a bear's head than you do.

But there he is, waiting to be found.

Room With a View: Boulder, CO

Side by Side

I went back to find some pictures of the Independence Trail from drier times after the recent post about checking out the rain-enhanced falls. Here are two stops along the trail. I recommend clicking to get a bigger view. The left is from December 2009; the right is from March 2012.


Well, I guess I was wrong about dodging the snow. Hope I can get down to the airport tomorrow.

After the Rain

Well, I guess we dodged the snow. There was a break in the rain today, so we ran over to the Independence Trail to see what the extra water did to the waterfall. One thing it did was make the flumes do a rare bit of work:

There are more pictures after the break.

It's Like Rain

Everything. Pretty much everything is like rain here in beautiful Nevada County. I am trying very, very hard not to complain, because the weather every other week this winter has been simply stupendous.

It does seem, though, that Mother Nature decided to deliver this winter's ration of precipitation all in a single storm instead of spread out over several months. I've not seen our creek running this high before. Apparently, we've gotten more than seven inches in this one storm, and it still hasn't stopped. It might be turning to snow, soon, too. I just hope that it's getting caught in some of the reservoirs and in the snow pack up the hill to make it a better summer for the flatlanders.

Results of the rain:

I think the power in North San Juan was out. At least, when I went over to Toki's for cheat day, today, it was shuttered, and all the businesses in the block across the street (the pizza shop, the bar and the organic whatever-it-is) all had their lights out. The gas station had power, though.

Along 49, there were several lovely run-off waterfalls. Our water is reddish brown.

Just on the other side of the South Yuba River, 49 was partially covered by a mudslide. Be careful out there, people.

And, finally, there's this. I can't blame it on the rain, but if you start to think that this weather has been even slightly apocalyptic, consider the future these folks are breeding:

Room With a View: Grants, NM

Sniffle Sniffle

Well, there won't be any wee toaty explorers from this week's trip. In addition to some bad weather in the middle, I came down with a cold. The symptoms of my cold are: headache, congestion, coughing, whinging, complaining, sniffling, moaning about and generally feeling sorry for myself.

Room With a View: Lone Tree, CO

I've Been Memed

2003 called and gave me 11 questions to answer.

(Thanks, Coyote Rose)

  1. You have one week to live. What do you do first?
    Maybe get a second opinion? Gosh, I've been thinking about food an awful lot lately, so I'd probably go on an eating binge. One week doesn't seem like enough time to really go nuts. I think maybe I'd jump in a car and drive the Kerouac or Travels with Charlie trip. Or maybe combine the two (food and writing) and eat at all the places in a Calvin Trillin or Jane & Michael Stern book.
  2. Saturday or Sunday?
    Oh, Saturday for sure. Sunday has that melancholy last-hurrah feel of the last days of a summer vacation.
  3. You can go back in history and stop one thing from happening. What do you choose to stop and why?
    This is like the Proust questionnaire on The Next Chapter. Since I've gotten my time machine, I've been so tempted to go back and stop a particular car accident in June 1993, but that would remove so many other things since then that have been good and I don't know what today would look like. So I think it's best not to go too far back because the ramifications would be too hard to predict. So I'd just go back and pick something different for lunch.
  4. How long do you wait to show someone you're dating your blog?
    I don't think my blog is terribly personal or revealing in an embarrassing way. I'd probably never talk about someone I was dating on this thing. (Mostly because then the Brunette might find out!)
  5. Favorite Disney princess and why?
    Oh, honey, all of them! Disney released Howl's Moving Castle in the US, so can I pick Sophie? We just babbled about her in the podcast.
  6. Whose commercials are worse: the Old Navy Modelquins or Flo at Progressive?
    Modelquins, I guess. Flo is kinda cute.
  7. Tell me your first memory
    Standing at the screen door of my grandparents' house while my parents went off to a Redskins game.
  8. A Genie gives you three wishes but you have to use them on other people. What do you wish for?
    Peace, Understanding, Unity. I don't know. I'm pretty lucky with my health care, but I'd love it if we could find a way to remove the concept of healthcare from the free market economy, or at least aspects of it. At the very least, the health of our nation should be a defense issue, especially communicable disease, really, but all forms of illness. I'm afraid as we get closer to treating gene-listings as intellectual property and we haven't yet figured out a sane way to handle intellectual property in an age where it is more prevalent and basic to the structure of our economy than ever before that with testing and whatnot the future looks grim. I'd go back and edit that sentence but it was intended to be a rant, so it should scan a little crazily.
  9. You get cast to be on the Amazing Race- who do you pick as your partner?
    Can I take the gnome? I suppose I'd like Stephen Fry or Michael Palin, because they know something about travel and I'd be stuck with them for long periods of time, so I want someone interesting to listen to.
  10. Tap dancing monkey or penguin?
    Oh, gosh, monkeys are inherently funny, but I always wanted to be Dick van Dyke, so I have to go with Penguins. Oh, does Mary Poppins count as a Disney princess?
  11. You're having a bad day, what drink do you get at the bar to make you forget?
    Lately I've been into Godfathers and (while pretending to be James Bond at casinos) martinis, but my go-to drink is always amaretto and Coke Zero.

It's From a Book

This is a scene from my favorite book.

The green thing is supposed to be a punt (a boat).

This is another in the continuing series of wee toaty explorers, a project to keep me busy while I'm on the road. A nice summary is here.

Room With a View: San Mateo, California

Shame about the weather. This time there would have been mountains to see (unlike Mountain View) if it weren't for the low clouds and drizzle.

I might have missed the only significant snow at home this year!