John Belushi's tombstone is cool!
From the book I'm currently reading (I'm in the year 1926): Ronald Reagan and the number 7. Also, Ban the Bra! (Not quite what you think.)
Yard sales were disappointing. I went to about eight of them, but there was nothing I wanted. One woman had an add-on device for an iPod that looked mildly promising, but I balked at the $40 asking price. That's not a yard sale price. The micro-economics of getting a book, CD or VHS tape for fifty cents to a dollar is one of the fun things about yard sales. If I'm going to pay more than, say, $20 for any one thing I'll go to a store!
One of the curious things about yard sales is that every now and then you find somebody who thinks that he or she has a valuable collection of goods that demands premium prices. Ha! Wrong! Yard salers expect yard sale prices.
It's funny. Buying goods frequently at yard sales changes one's sense of value and cost. For instance, in May I attended what I thought was a yard sale at my church but was, in fact, a give-away. I got a fairly tall stack of perfectly good and listenable classical and semi classical CDs for free. Am I then to turn around and buy one for $18 retail? Not very likely. Or I can get great hard cover books for $5 and under. Will I buy one, then, for $30 retail (when I can check it out of a library for free)? Probably not.
I saw the latest Harry Potter film Saturday night ($10.50 each!); I thought it was pretty good. Thank goodness they put some humor back into it. That last movie ("Order of the Phoenix") was grim and just workmanlike, and, so far, my least favorite in the series. Yes, this latest installment is pretty hormonal, as described in the reviews. The various teenage love interests are given equal weight with the Voldemort story line. And I got a kick out of Ron Weasley's Quiddich cap... it looks exactly like a modern day scrum cap, except made of leather. Anyway, this installment sparkles again - which the franchise was in need of.
When I get the DVD I'm going to have to do a screen capture of one overhead shot of the Thames River - the sequence when the Millennium walkway bridge is getting busted up. I want to see if it's in enough detail to show a bus stop that Meredith and I waited at one evening earlier this year, near the OXO Tower... It appeared to be pretty detailed.
I visited my friends Don and Rodger yesterday; both are mild (not fanatical) model train enthusiasts. Rodger gets a couple of train magazines, and I was thumbing through one, glancing at the articles. (Bear in mind that I have little knowledge of model railroading.) I see an article, "Build your own plastic waybill holder." I ask, "What's a 'waybill holder?'" "A thing to hold waybills," comes the reply. I ask, "What's a 'waybill?'" "It tells the schedule for what's getting transported," is the reply. I am stunned. "Model railroaders actually write on little paper forms what small bits of plastic and wood are getting transferred from one part of the layout to another?!?" I ask. Indulgent smiles follow.
They try to point out that's it's akin to the level of obsession in reenacting that attends being concerned about what color of thread to use on seams on, say, frock coats in Civil War reenacting, but I'm not having it. This is a level of nerdliness that surpasses reenacting, I think.
So I turn to another article, "Build your own 1932 CNS Boxcar." I ask, "Do you mean to tell me that model railroaders would, say, reproduce tiny hobo graffiti in chalk on the boxcar and then quibble about whether or not said hobo was riding the rails in 1932?" Oh, yes, I am assured. Arguments get generated about more minor bits of trivia than that.
Can you imagine one middle aged guy creating a likeness of North Bank Fred - bottle of wine in hand - lying in a scale model ditch next to a scale model rail yard and another guy quibbling that Fred never drank Ripple wine, that he prefers Thunderbird? Whew.
Rodger's other magazine was certainly for railroad professionals, as it had a little advertisement box describing "Ten Tips for Using Derailers." Now, I would have thought that something called a derailer would have been a major no-no on a real railroad, but apparently not, and there are ten tips for their use.
The world of human endeavor... so many things to know...
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