Everybody wants to save the earth, nobody wants to help mom do the dishes.  --P.J. O'Rourke

Friday, July 3, 2009

Apropos of Nothing

Not that you asked, but there will be no posts for the
next 7 days while I enjoy a well deserved respite from
the rigors of unemployment.

Happy 4th of July -

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

It's Over in Minnesota, Franken Won.

It's about frigging time. It really is the Al Franken Decade !
Link: Talking Points Memo

Goggomobil Dart

There are plenty of obscure cars, but few can match the Goggomobile Dart for sheer improbability. The original Goggomobil was a post war German microcar with a 2 cycle 250cc 15hp motor. So what about the Dart? Well, believe it or not the Dart originated in Australia,by way of Dingolfing Germany.
At the time, Australia had prohibitively high import taxes imposed on foreign cars. Bill Buckle of Sydney discovered that he could circumvent the tariffs by importing the chassis and mating the chassis to an Australian made body. Apparently Goggomobil maker Hans Glas was the only manufacturer which would go along with this scheme, and Buckle Motors became the sole purveyor of fiberglass bodied Goggomobil clones down under. Not content with the rather pedestrian Goggomobil Sedan & Van, Buckle also had a sports car body designed for the tiny Goggomobile chassis by a race car engineer. The result is the Goggomobil Dart, the knee high 750lb door-less Micro Sportscar pictured above.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Battleship Massachusetts at Battleship Cove in Fall River, MA

I took my daughters and their cousin on a day trip to Battleship Cove in Fall River MA last week. When I was a kid in the 1970's I loved going there, but after 30 or so years, I wasn't sure what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised. More... In addition to the battleship and it's long time neighbors the WWII submarine Lionfish and the Vietnam era destroyer Kennedy, they had two complete WWII PT boats displayed in a covered shed and an Eastern Block missile corvette from the 1980's, very cool. The place was also hopping and all the boats were mobbed with people. The Massachusetts was a bit worse for wear topside than it was 30 years ago, but there was a lot of restoration work ongoing, so hopefully they have a handle on it. The ship made a trip to the huge drydock #3 in Boston for a thorough reconditioning below the waterline (photo above). The most impressive thing as an adult visiting the ship, is the sheer complexity of it. The engineering spaces and fire control rooms boogle the mind. In the digital age we are used to sensors and embedded processors doing all work for us. One may as well be on an alien space ship, and ultimately as an adult, that is the best part, trying to piece together the whole of the ships pieces, how did it work? That and trying to imagine what life was like for those aboard in the 40's.

13 Year Old of Today Uses a 30 Year Old Walkman for 13 Days

From the BBC:
Money Quote:
"It took me three days to figure out that there was another side to the tape. That was not the only naive mistake that I made; I mistook the metal/normal switch on the Walkman for a genre-specific equaliser, but later I discovered that it was in fact used to switch between two different types of cassette."

Here's the Link