A.

Prior to the return of ABBA earlier this month, the closest we could get to new ABBA song was from Agnetha Faltskog’s 2013 album “A”. Though it wasn’t really promoted in the states, a few of the tracks did fairly well in Europe.

From 2013, here’s “Dance Your Pain Away” by Agnetha Faltskog.

https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/JBboaz9Jgqo

Installed.

After a week of testing my little Raspberry Pi standing in for a grandfather clock sized master clock, I pulled wire through my office wall and properly installed this 1939 Standard Electric Time Company school clock. The clock never missed one click the entire week. This makes me happy.

We have insulation in every wall of the house. I will not be pulling wire through many more walls and instead will come up with a different plan for the placement of each clock.

A small accomplishment. I am pleased.

Saturday Morning.

Around this date in 1975, my sister and I were hyped up on ”Super Sugar Smacks”, stationed in front of our black-and-white Zenith TV in the family 10×50 mobile home with 8×40 addition. We would always tune into ”Shazam!” and “The Secrets of Isis” as we chowed down on the cereal with milk from the farm down the street.

In this screencap from “Funny Girl”, Cindy Lee, Rick, and Andrea have a picnic lunch on the front lawn of their high school. Cindy Lee brought egg salad sandwiches and Andrea brought along fried chicken. Rick didn’t bring along anything because he figured the ladies would provide the lunch. It was the ’70s. When Andrea called him out on this, Rick said he’s going to marry a woman that looks like Isis but can cook like Andrea. Andrea gives him a look, and tells him he’s going to be a very old bachelor.

She then gives a quick side glance to the camera to thank the audience for keeping her superhero secret. She did this often throughout the series and I always liked that as a kid. It’s hard to see in the second screen cap, but this was a few decades before HD video.

As a quick aside, even in 1975 at age seven I had a crush on Brian Cutler as Rick Mason.

Joanna Pang as Cindy Lee, Brian Cutler as Rick Mason, Joanna Cameron as Andrea Thomas/Isis.
A little wink to the camera from Andrea. Thanks for keeping the secret of her secret identity!

20 Years Later.

Our country changed forever 20 years ago today. Though I was writing in my blog at the time, I did not write a blog entry that day. I did, however, write a short entry on 9/12/01.

Here’s a link.

Our nation has never really recovered from the events on 9/11. The events of that day, aside from the horrific loss of life, touched each and every American and markedly changed the course of our history. To think there is now an entire generation that’s never known anything but war.

No Chat Cat.

I sat down to have a conversation with Truman. He likes hanging outside my office door, so I thought I’d sit down on the floor next to him and discuss his thoughts on it being the end of the week.

He showed a typically feline air of disinterest.

Apparently something farther down the house was grabbing his attention at the time, because he wanted nothing to do with having a conversation with me. I shouldn’t be surprised. Perhaps I should have carried kibble in my hand or something.

Thanks?

I saw a political ad put out by a Republican Super PAC thanking Senator Kyrsten Sinema for her continued support of the Republican agenda in Congress.

Of course, Senator Kyrsten Sinema is a Democrat, but that apparently was just a ploy to ride coattails or something. She was voted into office before we moved to Arizona. When her term is up I’m really, really hopeful something challenges her in the primary and gets her off the ballot. She hasn’t done much of anything good for society. She voted against a federally minimum wage, she didn’t show up to vote on the January 6 commission, and she continues to side with the Republicans when it comes to the filibuster.

But she dresses up in hip wigs and cool skirts, so we’re suppose to think she’s edgy and hip.

She’s not. She’s just another corporately sponsored politician in Washington and she’ll do what she’s told to do by the highest bidder.

2 Comments

Out and About.

We had dinner with Homer and Matt tonight. They introduced us to a small Mexican restaurant on the other side of the 10. I had vegetarian Cuban Tacos that were excellent. The conversation was a delight. It was nice to be out and about to and visit with Homer and Matt for a little while. We have common friends in the blogosphere. It’s funny to think that we’ve both met people that maintained blogs at one time, even though we’re all from different corners of the country.

The more I get to know Tucson the more I like it. I already knew I liked this big little town, but getting better acquainted with our surroundings is a good feeling. Even if we have to maintain our social distance or make sure we’re all vaccinated.

I didn’t take any photos. I’m deficient at my attempts at being a social media influencer. I don’t even know if people still read this blog as I never look at the traffic stats, but it’s still fun to write in it like it’s 2009.

Restless.

It’s probably from my extended tour of midlife crisis or middle-aged syndrome, but I’ve been feeling rather restless lately. Social media feeds have pretty much moved to screaming in an echo chamber, I feel impeded about going out, what with this pandemic raging on and whatnot, and most weirdly, I can’t shake the feeling that there’s another shoe somewhere and it’s waiting to drop. I feel like it’s a big shoe, something that’s going to really rattle society again, and honestly, I don’t know if society can take something like that.

If I take a 50,000 foot view of life, it’s good! We’re all healthy, we live in a beautiful home, my job is going very well (I’m a team leader again!), and we’re getting things done. Yes, we’ve had some ups and downs with getting the house ready for the next monsoon season (contractors are coming later this month) but it’s all manageable. We have friends coming in to visit next month and the holidays aren’t really that far off. (It’s too soon for Halloween decorations, let alone Christmas decorations, so don’t do that yet).

Yet, I’m still feeling restless. It’s probably boredom. It’s that whole “who is a walking incubus of pandemic that refuses to get vaccinated as they walk among us?” thing I have going on in my head. I wish people would just do the right thing for society and stop being so selfish.

Tick Tock.

When we moved from Upstate New York to Chicago in 2017 I donated much of my school clock collection to family and the local Historical Society. The Historical Society is located in one of the old elementary schools in my home school district and they’ve installed the clocks but they’re not running yet. The next time I’m back east I’ll get them running. Apparently several visitors to the building have commented about the old clocks.

I had a few clocks that made the move from storage in Chicago to our home here in Tucson. Running wire throughout this house is not an option, as we have no attic or basement. However, there are a couple of places when I can pull wire without too much destruction so maybe I’ll get one or two going.

When the clocks were in the old house they were initially run by a master clock (the type of which would be found in an office of a school or commercial building) from 1957. That clock gave up the ghost and parts were hard to come by, so I ended up writing some software to run on a 1996 era IBM PC (Pentium III) that ran the clocks for about eight years. A terrible energy hog, I was determined that if I ever had the opportunity to get the clocks running again, I’d do it with 21st century technology.

Today I started up one clock with a Raspberry Pi 3 and relay board. Less than 100 lines of code and this 1939 Standard Electric Time slave clock is running flawlessly and synced to the Atomic Clock in Boulder, Colorado courtesy of a WiFi Internet Connection.

To give you a sense of the size of the computer running this clock, here it is, in a temporary box, next to a standard pair of scissors.

I’m very pleased with this setup, which I’m keeping in “temporary mode” to make sure things are working properly for the next week or so.

By the way, the clock in question is originally from Cassadaga Valley Central School in Sinclairville, New York. They were doing some major renovations in the school in the early 2000s and replaced the clock system. I had been in the school a couple of times in the 1980s and knew they had the same type of clock system I collected. They were happy to let me have one or two clocks for my collection, as they were just getting thrown away.

Perhaps they needed a little Raspberry Pi that fits inside a small box to get things going again.