I thought yesterday was Friday for a bit. I posted a selfie on Instagram with a tag line echoing my thoughts.

Today is Friday. And that makes me happy.


The holidays are approaching. I know this because we were in Target the other night and “Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree” was blaring from the intercom speakers in the ceiling and there were Christmas decorations strung about. It’s weird to see displays of snow and other frigid weather and hear things like “oh the weather outside if frightful” when I’m in shorts and the outside temperature is in the 80ºFs. Since moving to the desert I never really know what time of year it is.

I wish I could say I get worked up with joy when thinking about the approaching holiday season but to be frank, I’m not really that excited about it. I don’t know if it’s just that I’m older or the end of the year responsibilities that kick in at work or the crass commercialism of it all, but I’m just not hyped about tinsel and garland moments. Do people still use those things? I miss tinsel. I will admit that.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year and aside from eating too much food, there’s not a whole lot of other things associated with the holiday. I like sitting around the dining room table with our family and talking to friends in far away places and nearby too. I like that stuff.

We have a vacation planned for mid December and perhaps I’ll find some time to relax and reflect on the approaching holidays. Maybe that’ll kick something into a higher gear for me.


While making my way through the workday today I decided to throw on a Youtube video or two. I’ve been in a nostalgic mood lately. I ended up dialing up a 1947 film which was basically a 30 minute infomercial for an electric range by Westinghouse.

In this film, a couple has invited their rich uncle over to convince him to help pay for their daughter’s tuition at the community college. They’re dependent on cooking the perfect meal for him, and when their old oven door blows off, their neighbor comes to the rescue with her new electric range by Westinghouse.

A special nod to the uncle’s nurse play by Margaret Hamilton, also known as the Wicked Witch of the West.

I really enjoy these old presentations. People dressed nicer, folks seemed friendlier, and the appliances they’re showing off are built to last a generation. And the knobs on the stove are real knobs with a color indicator as to the heat setting for the burner! What will they think of next!

You can be sure … if it’s a Westinghouse.


Today is Election Day in the United States. It’s an off year, so the focus is on an assortment of local elections. Here in Tucson we were given the opportunity to vote for a mayor (the incumbent is a Democrat) and there was a couple of propositions including determining the salary for the mayor and the city council.

I voted by mail last week.

Pundits, pollsters, and the screaming media are watching elections across the country to try to get a read on the pulse of the nation. Will the local elections swing blue? The media has been pushing polls for the 2024 presidential election, trying to narrow the gap between Biden and Trump as much as possible so they can ramp up the drama and get more ad revenue. In my honest opinion, both choices are bad but there’s one choice that’s much worse than the other so there’s that. I’d vote for a third party if it made a difference but the machine in Washington makes sure there isn’t really a choice for the average American. Just screaming and empty promises and power hungry idiots and profit seeking grifters and people that have been in office for too many decades. I’m discouraged with this whole democracy thing, but I’ll still vote and I’ll always try to cast a vote that will actually accomplish something.

So little choices. I hope the local elections go well, though, with plenty of pleasant surprises.

It’ll give the media something to scream about.


I just read a tirade (that I won’t link to) of a person upset that Daylight Saving Time starts and we use this time to SAVE UP DAYLIGHT FOR SPRING.

I have no words.

  1. Daylight Saving Time has ended for the year. We don’t do DST in Arizona; we are on Mountain Standard Time year ’round. Right now we are two hours behind Eastern Standard Time. During Daylight Saving Time we are three hours behind Eastern Daylight Time.
  2. We do NOT “save up daylight” during standard time to use during daylight time. To even think that someone believes that is mind boggling to me. The tomfoolery is Daylight Saving Time is pushing the clocks forward an hour to make you THINK you have more daylight in the evening, but you don’t. It’s just the government messing with the clocks and you thinking you have more daylight because the clock shows a later sunset than it really is. It’s all smoke and mirrors.

But in no way is anyone saving up daylight in a bank or something.


Truman’s sleeping habits continue to follow the sunrise, so he’s sleeping in a little bit these days. This is nice. He decided enough is enough though a little after 8:00 a.m. and came up to give us a good morning greeting.

He just wanted extra kibble and lots of pets. There were purrs.

Gracious, Part 2.

So it’s been 10 days since my friend Chris gave me a computer he was intending on sending off to the recycling center. The computer in question is a Microsoft Surface Laptop 2. The specs on this machine are impressive. I’ve been running Ubuntu Linux 22.04.3 LTS since obtaining the laptop. The experience has been very good, in fact, it’s been an unexpected pleasure.

Now, because of my history with Apple products I tend to compare today’s computer hardware to that released by Apple. The Microsoft Surface Laptop 2 is dang close to the MacBook Air experience. The hardware is light to carry, the display is gorgeous, and I really like the fabric covered keyboard area.

I usually stick to LTS, or Long Term Support, releases of Ubuntu because it’s usually the most stable. 22.04.3 LTS has not disappointed in any way. I needed to do a couple of things to modify the experience, but that mostly based on personal preferences. For example, I like my “dock” to be along the right hand of the screen, regardless of the operating system I’m working with. If I can change the default fonts of the interface I usually change it to something like “GE Inspira“.

This experience thus far has been flawless and I’m enjoying the computer very much. Not bad for a computer destined for the recycling center.

If you’re looking to give new life to old equipment, I highly recommend Linux, especially Ubuntu Linux. It’s not overly fiddly and the paradigm presented for the user experience feels familiar.


I recently picked up an analog wall clock from a school in North Dakota. It’s rare for these clocks to be on ebay these days, because the Lathem Time Clock Company didn’t make their “Airtime” line of clocks for very long. These clocks are controlled wirelessly from a little master clock I have elsewhere in the house. The master clock pulls in the clock signal from the Atomic Clock in Colorado and rebroadcasts the correct time to all compatible clocks. As far as I can tell, only Lathem Airtime clocks are compatible with this particular system.

Lathem had a few different styles of clocks available in the series, including a digital clock that I had hanging in this space prior to today, and a solar powered model that boosted its battery power by ambient light in a room.

The whole thing is very clever. And my family is happy I haven’t pulled wires through all the walls to power an older style clock system.

Scary Fast, Part 2.

On Monday I noticed in the credits of the Apple “Scary Fast” event that the entire 30 minute production had been shot on an iPhone 15 Pro Max.

I find this impressive.

Apple released a “behind the scenes” video showing how this was done and it’s amazing to me that an iPhone can be used to film an entire promotional video. This area of technology is moving forward quickly.

This has further inspired me to use my iPhone as my primary video device when storm chasing. At the moment I’m still using an iPhone 13 Pro, but I’m sure the next iPhone in my pocket will be the “Pro Max” version of whatever is the latest at the moment.

I wonder what Hollywood productions are being shot on iPhone (outside of the current actors’ strike). I imagine the days of miles of film and large cameras on top of a rig are long gone.

Just for fun I took a random shot on my iPhone 13 Pro just prior to writing this blog entry. It’s the corner of my work desk.

To my amateur eye I find the quality of this two year old iPhone to be amazing.