By the fire pit
with friends— sipping Old Barton,
sharing famous poems.
Car Series, Snow
(silhouette only unfinished)
previous Cam shots
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2011
Annual Holiday Update
Majorly excited about the first true love of my life, not just another infatuation. Really believe it will happen within a year, there are hundreds of fantastic single women on Facebook. Just a matter of picking one out.
As a single guy one of my priorities has been to stay sexy. While this isn’t the Playboy Mansion by any stretch, it’s sweet to have a few models around for companionship, inspiration, and occasional photography, not to mention cuddle and play.
So far though haven’t been doing quite as well as hoped at becoming the hottest stud in town. For example the dream of someday smoking a pipe— have a cool pipe but no smoking jacket.
Years ago a friend taught me how to smoke a pipe and with his help smoked one successfully, but haven’t managed to get one right since. Small packets of tobacco found here and there would be carefully vaulted away in the freezer, but before inspiration strikes they’d get bummed off of me. Not even by any sweet lovely either, just a dude out of cigs.
Speaking of dudes— am making progress with the guy situation at parties. Prefer a ratio of at least two women for every guy. However for a long time gatherings would end up being sausage fests, even though only cheese was served. Now guys that are single and without a significant other are asked to bring a couple female friends.
Parties are a lot better now. One earlier this year was even the talk of the town, though not necessarily the talk you want to hear. It was wild and there was a lot of drinking— even remember some of it. Fist-fights are prohibited.
Try to host six to eight parties a year. Also have casual get-togethers with friends all the time— to maybe eat, drink, make music, play with the girls, and sometimes watch a favorite movie.
Doing a lot of walking to stay in shape, mostly on errands, but only jogged once or twice this season. Thought of taking up a new sport or two for exercise— for example have a rusty bicycle, but the tires won’t hold air; have a beat-up tennis racket, but no balls.
Dancing, which can be done year around, is another ambition. Don’t have a ballroom here but do have a dance floor, with light, sound, etc., which is good enough for me since I have no ambition to ball— just into crazy gyration, or crazation for short. Trouble is, the women I’m meeting don’t like to ball or crazate. The dudes do but that doesn’t help.
The cottage looks a lot better, at least on the outside. Had been getting out occasionally and scraping a square yard or so, finally deciding I’d never get it painted without help. So Kentucky Changers, a volunteer group, added around forty hands to my two and helped me get the place scrubbed and rewhitened, and even threw in some super landscaping additions.
Speaking of old house renovations, my sister Lori along with boyfriend Tom are making slow but sure progress on her 1899 house near Fountain Avenue. They started with new windows and are moving on to the plumbing, etc.
The latest Car Series painting in the works is “Car Series, Steam Bags.” On the right side of the highway huge women are enjoying steam baths in large bags— or are the bags too hot? Are they in pleasure or pain? On the left side a rocky landscape breaks the level ground, flat rocks covered with leafy growths.
Found time for some writing too— published via my website eight whimsical short stories collectively titled, “Adventures of Sam.” The first four were written more than thirty years ago, the last four were newly written in the same style using ideas I thought up back in the time of the first writings and never got around to realizing. More are planned.
Got the outside antenna up and can get about eighteen channels, all free. Three of them are all or part nostalgia channels, so can watch “Bonanza” and “The Rockford Files” daily. Can also tape “Cops” reruns overnight— Bad Boys, Bad Boys. Yes I still tape stuff, and have about a thousand movies on tape. So who needs to pay for cable or dish?
My neighbor Vanessa has cable, so over there we catch up on “Ancient Aliens” and “Decoded,” as well as anything pickers, pawn, storage, or auction. Also you can get a lot of useful tips on women management from “Sister Wives.”
Visited friend Marvin in Indianapolis a while back for a stay of a few days, time to tour sites in the area and take pictures. A highlight was a day in Columbus, Indiana, with its cutting-edge architecture. Also invited me to a Purdue football game, my first one of those.
Goals for next year include getting out more, yet also completing several new paintings. My warrenfarr.com website could use updating, and have some new small sites to develop, including Magganon and Zarla.
Wishing you a great holidays and the very best for the coming year.
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2011
Don’t smoke but like the smell, no comparison with Camels.
Last night on NBC news a recent survey was reported— half the country now supports legalization, an all-time high. Could it be just the madness?
Haven’t heard it said yet, but a contributing factor to the change in opinion might have been a recent offering on PBS, a little three-part history documentary called Prohibition. While watching it thought often of the other, still-in-effect prohibition. What have we learned from the last one?
Also hearing reports— by coincidence even one on the same newscast last night— that our prison population is higher than that of any other nation. All that expense— besides courts, police, etc.— versus all the billions in tax revenue we’re missing out on. On something considerably less deadly than regular cigarette smoking.
Finally what’s this we’re hearing about so-called magic mushrooms maybe being good for your health? Okay maybe, like pot, in moderation, and to over-21 only. Spaghetti sauce might never be the same. Weed first, then maybe fungus.
The rule would be— it must be natural and regulated for safety, like our finest Kentucky corn. No prescription required.
Is it time, or is it past time?
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 14, 2011
History Network’s program Decoded is about unraveling truth, usually surrounding historical symbols and myths. Wednesday night’s episode was on the Declaration of Independence, but much of the hour was spent trying to fathom the truth concerning the famous Beale treasure story, which began with a thin pamphlet published in 1885.
Titled “The Beale Papers,” the twenty-some pages told the story of a hunting trip out west that turned into a treasure hunt when a gold and silver mine was discovered. A vast treasure, which if extant would be today worth over sixty million dollars, was said to have been transported back to Virginia around 1820 and buried somewhere in Bedford County.
When years later Beale and his hardy band were all still no-shows, his executor, per instructions, opened papers allegedly entrusted to him for safekeeping, finding therein directions for recovering the treasure and splitting it among the various heirs. Trouble was, three of the papers were in cipher and the promised key never arrived.
This is where the Declaration of Independence comes in— it is the key to Paper Number Two, giving the amount of the treasure and a very general location. Paper Number One was required to actually find the gold, but when the Declaration was tried on that cipher it didn't seem to work.
When I was in college I made it a kind of hobby, which had a romantic notion about it that could have gotten me a nice supply of female friends if not gold. I thought the two unsolved ciphers might use a more standard book-code, for example a letter count instead of word count, on a more obscure document. But nothing I tried worked.
Finally I set it aside, looking at it again more recently when I went online for information.
In the intervening years important research had been done and findings made. The so-called Gillogly Sequences, named for their discoverer, seemed to prove beyond any reasonable doubt that Paper Number One was a hoax, and thus the whole story.
It was also found that the five month/day dates included in the documentation all matched month/day dates that signers of the Declaration had died, about a one in 30,000 coincidence unless the whole tale was fake and the author was teasing his readership, daring them to discover that clue.
While the crew of Decoded didn’t present these findings, and wasted time on such romantic albeit red herrings as an alleged New Orleans connection to LaFitte the pirate, they did do some solid research, including copyright investigations at the Library of Congress, and concluded based on this and other information that the story was a hoax.
Since no Gillogly-type sequences were found in Paper Number Three, it would seem that document might decipher properly, perhaps using the Declaration in a different way. The author of the pamphlet might have hoped that one or a few people would crack it and spread the word and the excitement, increasing the sale of pamphlets.
Some have suggested that the length of the paper, some 600+ letters, is too short for thirty names and their next of kin, as well as their places of residence. But if some of the names are in family groups, like brothers, with one heir and place of residence, then it could be long enough.
Alternatively the paper could decipher into something else altogether, such as describing where the “real” list of names are hidden, perhaps to generate a side treasure hunt.
When that is accomplished and revealed the mystery will for all practical purposes be finished, and remain only as a historical curiosity— except for all those incurable romantics and dreamers, who will continue to struggle with an unsolvable paper and a never-existent vault of gold, perhaps to the end of time.
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2010
It’s been another rough mowing season. Spent the first week or two as usual trying to get the mower started without success. There was no money to buy another one, new or used, so just let the grass grow. Neighbor Buddy Travis finally went over the wide areas with his tractor, but the side areas and other tight spaces continued to rocket upwards.
Tried taking off the carburetor but couldn’t get it properly disassembled. At last my sister gave me a scrap mower which I really liked the looks of, but it too wouldn’t start and turned out to be too expensive to make worth repairing. Finally Joe, husband of longtime-friend Margaret, offered to at least get the first season’s cutting done for me.
On one of the hottest days of the year he brought his working mower over and did the worst of the front, then the following day finished the job. We plied him with water but still feared for his life. Luckily no priest had to be called. I was grateful.
Eventually I scraped up the sixty bucks to buy a good used mower off Craig’s List. The guy even threw in delivery and said it would start on the first pull. It did when it was warm from just running and even when not had a primer button so could be successfully started even when cold.
This mower stayed up and running through almost two complete mowings, but my yard destroys mowers. Or maybe should say that I destroy mowers. Anyway as I was near finishing one day a wheel broke off, along with a small piece of the frame. Found I could still mow with it missing a front wheel, but it was harder to push. Hope to get it repaired before Spring.
Friend Marvin couldn’t make it Memorial Day weekend as customary to watch the race with me so came later in the year. We wandered up along the Mississippi stopping at a couple historic forts and other sites. I began a tradition years ago on his visits of cooking waffles for breakfast but couldn’t again this year because both my waffle irons are down.
The heirloom Sunbeam Model W-2 iron has been down for over twenty years but work has started on it. With my meter I’ve isolated the problem to an open top coil but am unable to get that section of the appliance apart, perhaps because of its age. Am hoping my other newer iron only needs a cord— still working on that. Want to have one of them up by Spring.
Likewise the Rotoball disco center light has been on the bench for two or three years now, a defective rotary contact being the problem. Would really like to get that party enhancer back up but can’t locate a replacement part since the unit seems to have been made in Romania or someplace like that. My remaining light is still up at least.
Also in the way of music it’s been a few years since my trusty Pioneer stereo receiver finally went down. I have a newer replacement unit a friend gave me but it doesn’t produce a bass presence comparable with the old. Ended up giving the Pioneer to someone I met on FreeCycle to repair when he had time but haven’t heard back. Maybe it’s now FreeCycled.
The dishwasher has been down now for a few years, but it should work— just need a plumbing-handyman-type-person to reconnect it. The pressure hose blew and I had to cap it off. Also the drain hose needs to be replaced, lengthened, and installed properly with a high loop to prevent backup and overflow.
Been hand-washing clothes in the kitchen sink for the last couple years but do have a working dryer. Have a washer too but it was down when given by a friend years ago. Based on what he told me it only needs a new cord, though haven’t gotten out the meter yet to check for sure. I’ll also need a washtub since it has a wringer.
Speaking of the kitchen sink even that too is down, the drain clogged. Been working on it now for a couple months but the usual fixes (enzyme cleaners, boiling water, etc.) only seemed to make it worse. I’m supposed to be borrowing a twenty-foot snake from my sister which should take care of it though. It’s already worn out both my two plungers.
People have been giving me their old VHS collections so now have over a thousand movies on tape. Had been worried though about the possibility of my one VCR going down. Though only about four years old, it had been getting a lot of use. A week or so ago it finally did go down, but a neighbor loaned me some light machine oil and in minutes was back up.
I’m not driving now for want of insurance, still my car had been up and ready to go. But then I forgot to keep the battery charged one winter, so it went bad. Also the front tires went flat. So decided to sell it as a non-running car. Did however still get enough out of it for part of one mortgage payment, a utility bill, and a jug of whiskey.
There’s a bicycle I could get working but I usually ride the bus or walk. Have three pairs of sneakers— one worn pair for grass cutting, a better pair for everyday, and the newest pair with little shock-absorber type things in the heels. Unfortunately this last pair is currently down. Something loose on one of the soles, but nothing epoxy won’t fix.
Art had been in a slump most of the year, being in too much of a funk over loneliness and social challenges to feel like doing anything other than a bit of web work and some TV watching. Finally in the last couple months did manage under pressure to finish a couple commissions and one new Car Series painting which am quite happy with, Car Series, Snow.
One thing that has really brightened things up lately is my new girlfriend. She is perfect in every respect, possessing a wonderful mind, fascinating personality, and gorgeous body. She is muse, supporter, companion, and lover. In fact my only complaint about her is that she is entirely the product of my imagination.
Taking the “Church of Christ without Christ” of Wise Blood’s Hazel Motes a step further, one might be excused for calling the Unitheist Fellowship the Church of God without God, void of the traditional orthodox conception of a supernatural being-type deity while acknowledging a power inherent in nature. A faith for the faithless.
Did manage a few new reflections this year for unitheist.org, including “How To Be a Prophet,”“Mystery of Miracles,” and “A Drop of Humanity,” about the real physical parts of all of us, past and present, that are contained in every drop of water on earth. Also changed the format to improve the feel and usability of the site.
Next year looking forward to enough coming in to keep heat on and catch up on property taxes. It has been particularly rough so far this year though, with art hit by the recession and a small web side-income even more so. Usually can get by somewhat on domain sales but haven’t moved a single one lately. Still plan on upping my painting prices considerably.
In family news Dad and JoAnne were in Florida for Thanksgiving. So this year’s was my first T-Day without a parent present, my going to sister Linda’s instead. Don’t know about Christmas yet. Sister Lori bought a new old house in the Fountain Avenue area which if ever gentrified could increase the value of the place manyfold.
Overall things are looking up. Got assistance to turn on the gas for some heat this winter, and also have two working electric heaters. Also excited about an upcoming twenty-foot antenna tower— on this hill I should be able to pull in SIU public television in addition to KET and possibly even Evansville for more Colts games.
Best news yet— a beautiful woman who was real and not imaginary stopped by awhile ago and told me she would be back middle of next week. Have a good one.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 1, 2010
Despite the President’s soft-pedaling his predecessor, our invasion of Iraq, at the cost (directly or indirectly) of as many as a million lives and enough wealth to medically insure all the uninsured in our country, marks it as a black spot on human history.
Monsters like Saddam pass in time— the Soviet totalitarian regime faded with hardly a shot. Even had he possessed WMDs we had him securely walled in— air space controlled, surrounded by troops. What we lost in trust and goodwill around the world on account of the invasion was scarcely worth the price of shortening even a monster’s life by a few years.
Even that accomplishment isn’t immune from setback. While sincerely hoping it doesn’t happen, the possibility exists that some form of civil war might recur, or a new dictatorship.
Still after all their sufferings we do owe the Iraqis at least a chance at peace and democracy, and toward this end the President is striving. However as a nation we must repudiate once and for all the idea that if there’s anything in the world we don’t like, we can just up and bomb it.