Thursday, October 23, 2014

OOPS - wrong blog

balderdash contacted me and asked if I was still alive and I said . . . I THINK so - but then I looked and I posted this on a dead blog by accident.  No wonder people were still talking to me!!

Anyway - it's in the past but . . . . WHY NOT REPOST IT!!!

I spent an amount of time this past week (last week) shielding myself from an  attack from a Facebook page called Columbus Speaks who was pretty much like Columbus Underground (worse actually) and Truth in Columbus Politics combined.

The problem was that since the creator of the page had a hidden agenda and refused to tell anybody who she or he was there was no trust and I refused to answer questions on that page.

However the big complaint (among many) were about Enerpac and how we should have let Enerpac move to Sun Prairie instead of giving the 1.5 billion dollar a year company a sweet deal to stay in Columbus.

I think my views on this situation are different then some other council members.

First of all I don't blame Curt Hanson for getting a great deal, this would be like saying"oh, I don't need THAT big of a raise, you can pay me less".  And I don't blame Enerpac as they are a world class company that can do whatever they freaking want.  If ANYONE is to blame on anything it's the previous administration.

But blame?  Was this really a bad deal?

If Enerpac would have left Columbus would it really be a bad thing or should we said don't let the door slam behind you?

The average property tax in Columbus is $3,620,  If there are 100 Columbus residents that have those high paying jobs which Enerpac offers and they moved away from Columbus the city would lose $362,000 a year in property taxes.  Enerpac has been in Columbus for 58 years and if they would have stayed for another 58 years that is 21 million dollars in lost property tax alone.

The average rent in Columbus is $632 a month.  If all those employees rented that is $758,400 a year in lost rent to landlords or 43 million dollars in lost rent for 58 years.

I'm not saying all those employees would move but you get my point.

And this does not count the high pay income these residents bring to Columbus, the millions in bank deposits, the hundreds of thousands in retail sales they bring over the lifetime and lets not forget utility sales, water, and electricity and so forth which are all for-profit organizations in Columbus. More water and electric sales mean it's cheaper it is for residents.

The sweetheart deal Enerpac got HURTS right now - no doubt about that.  But are we only concerned about the short run? It seems so.  This isn't like letting a low pay grocery store slip through our fingers.  Enerpac is the kind of company Columbus wants and needs they held all the cards.  We let them go and we lose ten's of millions over their lifetime.

So you can get mad at me all you want but I feel the long run is more important and while I am also a little pissed off at the current pain and secrecy of the past administration, it's in the past, nothing anybody can do about it. Let's look at the future.    

And we all know that if everybody agreed with everybody else, Facebook would be a pretty boring place.

I had a wonderful opportunity last night to attend a special Columbus Library meeting at the High School and could listen incognito to a combination of our Hispanic community and other residents of Columbus talk about Columbus and it's problems.  NOT what I expected to hear at all.

Besides the normal complaints about the heavy handed Police Department hurting Columbus (they REALLY have a community likability problem) were concerns with a communication gap.

The lack of or the need for more English courses (more and longer) in our schools, the lack of knowing about what is going on in Columbus because of a language barrier. They have no clue when there kids can join soccer leagues or anything that happens in town (the meeting had an interpreter).

The group was concerned about business downtown and they REALLY wanted more bike paths. Oddly in the 30 things wrong with Columbus, roads were never mentioned.  Things that were brought up were the same concerns I have, more things for youth, more multi-generational activities (perhaps a community center?) a plaza where people can hangout downtown and mingle (something the whole world does but not America) a brand for Columbus (who are we ???  Discover Columbus - Celebrating Small Town America).

It was great listening to people talk so casually.

I do not believe people fully understand how our Library is becoming more and more of a bonus to Columbus with it's many many programs.  The Columbus Library is becoming something of a big deal across America and I'm sending images today about Columbus that will be on the American Library Association website (3 million views per year), print media and newspapers around the country . . . . somewhere.

The Columbus Library is not just a room of books.

My friend in Madison, Elwood, is the caretaker for a few condo's and he had me take some images of one of his building last weekend that he is pretty proud of.  He is looking into becoming a Master Gardner but I believe he is already - just not certified. Sort of like a Rainman master gardener without the official badge.

Drives me NUTS sometimes.


On the Dan Patrick Show they offered special "Aaron Rodgers says R E L A X" tee-shirts.  They had 300.  In 24 hours they have orders of over 900 now.


And this is awesome.   I flipped past this 4 minute video six times before I decided to watch it and OMG - this is a MUST watch and is amazing.

What incredible things happen when you reintroduce wolves into Yellowstone not only with species but with the actual physical nature of Yellowstone - AMAZING!!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Friday stuff

Inside of my eyeball
You, me and most people can see about 6 million colors because our cones in our eyes have a 3 cell structure.

There is a woman with tetrachromat which means she has a 4 cell structure and she can see 100 million colors!  Is that a good thing? I can't imagine what the difference would be. What color am I missing???

She's like a color super hero but I can't think how she could fight crime this way.

The weird thing is her daughter is colorblind!  But wait - it seems she is an artist that teaches painting and has color blind students and she says they actually have a very good appreciation of color. Just not what WE can see!!!

There are many people with tetrachromat but do not know it because they have never trained their brains to notice it. Fascinating.

OH - that image is of the inside back of my eyeball. The black dot is actually the very center where everything goes into my brain.  The focus point is the bright area with the nerves and so forth.  I guess off center is the norm.


Yesterday at The Workshop  I gave some "demonstrations" on digital photography to kindergartners.

They were fascinated with turning horses pink.  Oddly pink was the most required color for almost anything.

I tried to teach them layer masking but they were more interested in turning horses into different colors.    

Seems Aaron Rodgers is better then we thought.  In fact Rodgers is 2nd only to Peyton Manning in 4th quarter comebacks between 4-8 points.

But unlike Manning it's when the team is down by 9 or more where Rodgers fails.  15.6% of Mannings drives end in interceptions BUT - he wins 28.6% of those games. (14 out of 49 chances) Rodgers drives end in interceptions 8.1% of the time  but he has NEVER won a game ( zero for 21).


Played 2 rounds of disc golf yesterday - Beaver Dam and Columbus.  Note to self, when jumping across the creek in Columbus, that far side might be farther then anticipated. Had my best round ever in Beaver Dam, no wind!!   Then got back to Columbus and that course is very wind dependent. Not many trees to hit but it's all about air movement.  The long holes are also into the prevailing westerlies making them longer.

Here is my average scores for each hole so far.   I play the course 3 times to get in 18 holes and so far there is no statistical advantage in that 3rd time around.

4.0 3.6 3.7 3.2 3.9 2.3

Right now Beaver Dam is easier then Columbus and I have an 814 DGCR Player Rating (maybe like a 16 handicap in ball golf).  I was using a new driver disc, a Nuke and I think I was getting 10-15 more feet out of it.  I can fling about 235 feet now with a variety of accuracy. but mostly forward.  Not bad for an old dude.


Saw a wolf in a field just going over the HWY 73 overpass going to Madison, he was munching on something.   Saw 4 vultures munching on something in the woods by the truck driving school yesterday.  Probably a dead deer or something. They looked happy.


What is faster on average - multi line checkouts of single line.

Obviously the single line is fastest - HOWEVER - one thing to remember is with multi-line you have a chance to make a decision.  Do you know the cashier?  Do you know the people in front of you?

There are some people that I see are coupon freaks that EVERYBODY hates.  They are a hideous group that slow the entire world down and raise prices for the rest of us by giving all their deals away or just throwing them out.  They buy $500 of groceries for $100 and give most of it away BUT, slow the whole checkout to a crawl.

Sorry - I experienced this the other day.  

OK - wasted enough of your time.

See ya 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Don't get in front of MY dream!

Russell Wilson "There will always be things in the way your dream"

What?  There are things in the way my dream? The only thing in the way my dream is if I have to go potty!  "No this, no that, no the other".  Wait, what are we talking about??  I'm so confused.  Being confused is my comfort zone.


I have to do something really scary today. Two things actually.  One is take down my desktop computer and set it up at The Workshop (I have no laptop). And the other is give a demo to a bunch of kids.

In other news I had lunch at The Shamrock Bar yesterday which is a bar in Madison I normally do not go to.  I believe the patrons had their straigh-dar beepers going off. I could hear whispers "that guy is overly friendly and over compensating, I bet he gives a big tip".  I did
I ordered a burger and really?  What temperature do I want it cooked?  sigh.  151 please.

A good friend of mine who does frequent to bar said they have a wall with artwork and I should see if I can get my stuff displayed because people there actually buy artwork.  Its not like a gym that wanted me to put art on their walls saying maybe I could sell some.  Yea - I'm sure people pumping iron are looking to buy artwork on the walls.

But inebriated people? That is a different story.


Almost done with my Civil war book about the Overland Campaign and people who believe Gettysburg had the most casualties (51,000) are correct . . . .but there are other battles that are much more gruesome and horrifying.   Knowing what really happened at Spotsylviania and Cold Harbor and The Wilderness is crazy bad and when the Union blew up a hill and then sent thousands into the crater who were then trapped.  OMG

Oddly the British did the same exact thing in WWI with the exact results!

I'm at a point in the book now where confederates are crossing the lines in winter to get warmed by union fires and then going back across the lines by daylight.


Looks like some disc golf this afternoon as it warms up a little.


This ebola thing - blame the media for getting everybody all worked up.  They gotta sell their wares.

There is NO problem in America. Yea - there has been stupidity but it's a learning process. When was the last time America dealt with a real plague.  Think if this was 200 years ago when washing hands was a new thing. Ebola is an amazing killing machine but it sounds like Canada is close to a vaccine. It's working on animals with human testing soon. Contain and control.  So far it's working.

And remember only 4,000 people have died.  200,000,000 died of the Black Plague, 75,000,000 died of the flu in 1920.


WOW - lots of death stuff in this blog today.  hmmmmmmm

OK - here are 17 American foods that foreigners think are really gross.

Cheese Whiz - “It tastes like plastic and cancer.”
Velveeta Cheese
Hershey's Chocolate
Red Vines - I'm not even sure what those are. Supermarket Bread
Root Beer Floats
Twizzlers - They don't even taste like red liquorice. They taste like cardboard.
Pop-Tarts - They were revolting. People actually eat them for breakfast??
Snow Cones - Ice and syrup actually pass for food??
Beef Jerky - It tasted like plastic and had the texture of worn shoe sole. Impressive how they took a bit of cow and made it entirely inedible.
Corn Dogs 
Biscuits and Gravy 
American Bacon 
Meatloaf - Why would I want a loaf of meat?
Breakfast Cereal - No wonder why many kids struggle with obesity Read more: