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One that got away


I’m going to propose a law — let’s call it Weasel’s Law — which states that the very first time you look for something on eBay, you will find a splendid example of that thing, better than any subsequent example you will see, even if you look and look. And the Corollary: it will go for reasonable money and, like an idiot, you won’t buy it.

When I was grinding up old watercolors over the weekend, I got to wondering how much mullers were going for on eBay, and I found this beautiful little object. It is a tiny Georgian hand blown blue glass muller, about three inches high. In the days of powdered wigs and beauty spots, it was used to prepare makeup at m’lady’s dressing table.

Here’s the description from the seller:

This little glass muller is two and three-eighths inches high and the base is just under two inches in diameter.

It was hand blown from Bristol Blue-Glass and dates from 1700s England. The dead-flat base is honed to create friction during the grinding, and the top where the pontil was is simple cut off and polished.

Some types of pan make-up were made in the household of the lady who wore it, and the ingredients (often containing white lead!) would be put onto a small glass or marble sheet. The muller would be placed on the ingredients and spread with downward pressure and circular movements until it formed a fine paste with the base medium, which was some type of fat. The make-up could then be applied immediately.

This would go nicely with the patch-stand already in your collection!

Yes, you may see it in color. Isn’t it a pip?

When I first spotted it, the price was hovering around £14. Later, though, someone must have put in a pretty high bid, because every time I upped mine his automagically topped it. In the end, I let it go for £27. I just couldn’t see paying so much for a tiny, precious object I’d be terrified to use. Even though it’s less than most brand new ones.

Okay, that’s enough art sperging for one week. Tomorrow, we have Dead Pool Round Whatever. Back here, 6 sharp, getcher favorite soon-to-be stiff!

I leave you with this picture of Cornellisen’s painting grinding room back in the day:



Comment from Ric Fan
Time: September 7, 2017, 10:06 pm

No masks in the grinding room. I wonder what color were there nostrils? Watched Edwardian Farm and they ordered pigments from Cornellisen to make pastels. They wore scarves over their faces while mixing it. I doubt artists who order and use pigments wear masks, do they?

p.s.: Really starting to worry about Florida, et al. Someone here said they were going to ride it out. 🙁

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: September 7, 2017, 10:23 pm

I never did. It really didn’t kick up much dust, if at all. I was making paint in very small quantities, though.

Yeah, Irma’s looking rough. I have family in North Carolina that are worried about it making landfall in one of the Carolinas.

Comment from Deborah HH
Time: September 8, 2017, 12:03 am

Weasel’s Law. I like it. I’ve been trying to buy a Hermes typewriter on eBay for ages, but: Weasel’s Law.

Comment from Pablo
Time: September 8, 2017, 12:49 am

People still do actual auctions on Ebay? Well, then:

Feed it the auction that catches your fancy, your max bid, and set it to launch just before the auction ends.

This takes all the drama out of the process, and keeps your competitive spirit from making you pay more than you’re really willing to.

Comment from Bob
Time: September 8, 2017, 12:54 am

One of my sisters is on hurricane staff for one of the hospitals in Fort Lauderdale. So she’s pretending to be brave. She survived Andrew, mostly by being out of it’s direct path.

Comment from Durnedyankee
Time: September 8, 2017, 1:37 am

We’ll get Carl to pick Irma, problem solved by Saturday morning.

If only.
I have never wanted a storm to take a right turn as much as I want Irma to.

And that picture…a r e you sure that’s safe for work?
And I don’t mean inhaling paint pigment.

Comment from ExpressoBold
Time: September 8, 2017, 1:37 am

Chooks… They’re alive!

Comment from OldFert
Time: September 8, 2017, 2:20 am

Fertville is about midway between Savannah and Monday’s 2PM eastern time hurricane projected position.
Governor has directed evac for east of I-95, but I’m west, so I guess we’ll hang around and see what happens.

Checked hotels to go to, but they’re pretty much full for quite a radius from here. (Prior planning prevents poor performance, yeah, I know, but I’m a devout procrastinator.)

If it gets real bad, we have a full tank of gas so we’ll hop in the car and head out 100 miles in some direction, hang around a Huddle House or something for a couple of hours, then come back since it’s supposed to be pretty fast moving.

Comment from Deborah HH
Time: September 8, 2017, 2:55 am

@Bob—she’s pretending to be brave.
I’d say she’s doing a good job of it.

Comment from Bob
Time: September 8, 2017, 3:32 am

@Deborah HH
Courage is when you’re scared and you do it anyway.

Comment from Ric Fan
Time: September 8, 2017, 4:05 am

Who here said they were staying in Miami with their elderly mother?

Comment from Janna
Time: September 8, 2017, 5:18 am

Ric fan
Xul’s fedora is in Miami with his mom
The fritz is hunkered down with booze and food

Comment from Uncle Al
Time: September 8, 2017, 6:17 am

I’m on the fence here in Sarasota. The past two days have been…interesting. Forecasts and models keep seesawing Irma’s likely path a little east, then a little west, then back. Right now it looks rideable out, FEMA says we should expect winds in the 45-55 MPH range with gusts to 65-70, and a puny storm surge of 2-4 feet. I’ve had to hunker down in heavier weather than that.

But who knows what the forecasters will say tomorrow?

Best of luck to all in Irma’s swath.

Comment from xul’s fedora
Time: September 8, 2017, 1:53 pm

Hi all. I’m hunkered down with my mom here in N Miami. Tried to get as many valuables as possible into the sturdiest part of the house. Shutters are up. We have food and plenty of water. I’m trying to stay brave but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a bit afraid. I’m hoping the wind speed maps they’ve been showing are accurate– that we’ll be getting up to 125mph max. Dunno if that’ll happen, but that hope is keeping me from a complete freak out. We can at least handle that. 145mph would blow us away I think. Any of y’all inclined to pray, I’d be thankful.

Comment from Ric Fan
Time: September 8, 2017, 1:59 pm

xul: No chance of you leaving or at least going to a shelter? After it hits, there will be radio silence for a long time and no way of knowing you are okay. I’m not inclined to pray, but I will for you.

Comment from Timbo
Time: September 8, 2017, 2:48 pm

My daughter lives in Miami, out west of the airport. My son and family are visiting her at the moment. They have tickets to fly out on Sunday. Something tells me that ain’t gonna happen.

So, all the inheritors of the family debt in one place and sitting in the path of Irma…

Comment from xul’s fedora
Time: September 8, 2017, 3:59 pm

Ric Fan: I live in a fairly sturdy house, concrete block and 2×10 roof beams built in the 50’s. It’s probably sturdier than the shelters they’re sending folks to. I think S Miami, Homestead, Cutler area is going to get the worst of it again like with Andrew. They’re projecting storm surge almost to Miami International Airport. I hope the eye wall misses us. Looking at the latest tracks, it looks like it’s tracking west of us.

At this point, it’s pandemonium on the highways and the gas situation is sketchy all the way up the state. Best to stay put and hope for the best.

Timbo: no one is gonna be flying out on Sunday. 😉 They were already turning people away today because of cancelled flights.

Comment from Timbo
Time: September 8, 2017, 4:18 pm

Just spoke to my kids in Miami. Things are tense; between them that is, as she has been through four hurricanes and this is his first. It started yesterday when he came back from Sam’s Club with trays of ground beef and chicken legs. Now the hunt is on for coolers and ice and marathon cooking sessions before the power is cut.

Early onset cabin fever.

Comment from Ric Fan
Time: September 8, 2017, 4:23 pm

xul: Good to hear. What about flooding?

Timbo: Oh, man! Maybe, it was the only food left. Are they in a safe building?

Comment from Timbo
Time: September 8, 2017, 5:07 pm

Ric, yes fortunately. Second floor in a new condo. Hurricane proof windows etc etc.

We’re in Spain, feeling hopeless.

Comment from xul's fedora
Time: September 8, 2017, 5:11 pm

Timbo: I get on my mom about having too much meat and stuff in the freezer during hurricane season. Trying to use stuff up right now before it spoils should the power go out for too long. We’ve been freezing containers of water, so ice shouldn’t be a problem at least for a few days.

Ric Fan: I live in one of the highest areas in Dade County. It has never flooded here. 🙂

Comment from LesterIII
Time: September 8, 2017, 6:00 pm


Comment from Ric Fan
Time: September 9, 2017, 10:42 pm


I take this with a grain of salt. Also, they say after the winds die down is the most dangerous since that is when the surge happens.

Comment from Timbo
Time: September 11, 2017, 7:53 am

Post-Irma family update. Even though downtown Miami was turned into Venice, the water never reached my daughter’s building. The power didn’t go out either. Plenty of trees and branches all over the place and reports of looting. Hope they throw the book at these people.

Comment from Ric Fan
Time: September 11, 2017, 9:05 am

I’m amazed your daughter has power, Timbo.

Comment from Timbo
Time: September 11, 2017, 2:15 pm

So was she. She was preparing for Irmageddon, so now has four big bags of ice, large quantities of chicken legs, burgers and hotdogs to consume. As soon as her friends return it will be party time.

Comment from Ric Fan
Time: September 11, 2017, 4:30 pm

I keep hearing people say it was over hyped. I dont think so. It hit Cuba as a cat 5 which weakened it. It hit Key West as a Cat 4. By the time it got to the mainland it was a Cat 3. Still, very dangerous. People’s preparedness really helped.

Comment from Durnedyankee
Time: September 11, 2017, 6:52 pm

I don’t think they can over-hype 185 mph winds.
People should recognize when the bullet gets dodged, for whatever reason, and thank whatever higher power (aside from Hillary Clinton) they believe in.

People who go hit by the full fury probably don’t think it was over-hyped.

It does lend itself to pointing out how much guessing is involved in weather forecasts – even if Al Gore CAN predict man-bear-pig will destroy us all 40 years from now.

And Timbo – I think they should throw high speed lead at looters, “Pour encourager les autres”.

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