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She’ll be comin’ ’round the mountain when she comes

Alright, you guys, this is it. A month ago, I mentioned I had a cousin coming to visit. I have spent essentially all my free time since then tidying up the problem areas.

You know. The Problem Areas.

That leaves our main living quarters still to go. I have about three days. Folks, I have vacuumed my guts out (which is every bit as horrible as it sounds). I can’t fail now.

Forgive me, I’m going to leave this as an open thread for the whole dang week. I’ll drop in from time to time and break up any brouhaha, fisticuffs or shenanigans but otherwise…knock yourselves out!

I’ll see you on the other side. Of the week. Not, like, the Other Side.

September 3, 2018 — 9:19 pm
Comments: 103

Terms and conditions may apply

ancestry
 

 

Okay, I don’t know if this applies. I got this (^^^) in the mail this afternoon, but I can’t find a similar offer on their website. So maybe they’re just mining people who have been members and quit. I’m not sure how you take advantage if you’re not one of those people, though there doesn’t appear to be a special code or anything.

Have you done the ancestry.com lark? It’s the best of the for-pay genealogy sites. But it’s incredibly expensive, per month or per year — especially if you’re an American or some other flavor of colonial and you need access to international records. On the order of $30 a month or more.

This is cheeky of them, because your human brain sifting through their records transforms their raw data into something big and important and far more valuable. You are building their commodity for them.

But here’s the thing: they know that. So when you drop your membership, they don’t delete your data. All your family trees are still there and you can look at them all you like, you just can’t add to them while your membership is lapsed.

So you can join for a month, beaver away at it like a bastard, and then drop it before you get charged for another month.

Even better, you get two weeks free to start. I signed up over my birthday, when I knew I would have free time, and pecked away at it for fourteen days and then canceled. I got a lot done and it ain’t cost me squat. I shall probably take advantage of this free weekend, too. And why not?

August 26, 2015 — 9:20 pm
Comments: 12

Uncle B’s new camera

Actually, this is a lousy way to show off his new camera. There was so much foliage in the image, the filesize was huge and I had to squeeze the .jpg down to stupid lossy.

Suffice it to say it’s awesome, and the first picture he took was this handsome shot of Jack.

August 12, 2014 — 9:40 pm
Comments: 13

‘ello?

Oof. Sorry. Got jammed up dealing with Pa Stoat on his iPad tonight. I know he’s feeling better, because he was poking all the buttons and knobs to see what they would do. Mostly, they disconnect things.

As a bonus, Uncle B got to hear a man say “dadgum it” unironically.

Pa Stoat had a series of ear infections as a child, in the days before antibiotics. The treatment then was to puncture the eardrum to release pressure, else it was possible the infection would burst inwards — nearly always fatal. I promise you, I could describe this process in MUCH more cringeworthy clinical terms.

And so, when he was fourteen, his left eardrum exploded while he was practicing for the state cornet championship. I shittest thou not. He still thinks he coulda been a container.

In his thirties, he underwent an experimental surgery to replace the most damaged eardrum with a piece of vein from his arm, extracted and scraped thin. It didn’t work all that great, but I have an awesome childhood memory of him propped up in the hospital with his head wrapped in about a mile of bandage, looking like a spaceman. Or a swami.

So he’s always been deaf, and now he has an advanced case of ARG — age-related goofiness.

But, hey, he did offer to send me some porn. So. There’s that.

September 17, 2013 — 10:41 pm
Comments: 14

Five years ago today…

…I posted this nude pic of my mother.

No, I look like my dad. Why do people always ask me that?

December 11, 2012 — 11:24 pm
Comments: 34

Paging Meester Bunny, Meester Bugs Bunny

You ready for this? This is the contents of one ten-inch pot. Huh? Huh? Any closer together, and I reckon these carrots would have facets.

Uncle B spent a lot of years in an upstairs flat smack in the middle of London. That’s where he developed the ability to grow whole fields of waving wheat in little teeny pots.

We’re going to fire up the chimenea, sit under the stars and get quietly snockered. It’s Friday. Have a good weekend, all!

July 9, 2010 — 10:03 pm
Comments: 21

Rumbled.

magneto

Well, that’s just swell. Using his awesome Google-fu, my nephew has discovered my blog. That means I can’t say bad words any more. Like shit. Or nipple. Or pillock. It’s a fambly friendly weasel from now on.

So, we took the gang out to our favorite chish and fips shop on Tuesday. I was twiddling the silverware waiting for our order (as you do) and I discovered my knife and fork were moderately magnetized. We went around the table, and all of our silverware was magnetized. Can any Professor Smartypants out there tell me why? Something to do with industrial dishwashers, perhaps?

It was fucking fascinating, is all I can say.

Have a good weekend, everyone!

September 4, 2009 — 5:45 pm
Comments: 23

Mad old bats in stereo

winchelsea

Uncle B’s mother is in the hizzouse. Okay for me; I get along with her just peachy, but I think the poor bastard feels like he’s in a mad old bat sandwich, and he’s the olive loaf.

Today, we all drove to the beautiful, haunted town of Winchelsea in East Sussex. Old Winchelsea was a large and important medieval town, until it was swept into the sea by a massive flood in 1287. Edward I ordered Winchelsea rebuilt on the hill above. A newfangled planned town, with the streets built on a grid.

The new Winchelsea was likewise a thriving port. But it was sacked by the French and the Spanish a few times and especially hard hit by the Black Death of 1348. When the harbor silted up in the 16th C, that was pretty much it. Winchelsea today is tiny and spooky and lovely and full of terribly, terribly rich people.

The surviving church — actually, the surviving chunk of the surviving church — is at the center of the grid, and it’s spectacular. For two months in 1855, John Everett Millais stood about where I’m standing inside and painted L’Enfant du Regiment, a wounded little girl asleep on the tomb of a knight (from a fictional story about an orphan adopted by her father’s regiment).

Well, he painted the tomb on this spot; he painted the little girl later in his studio. And a damn fine job he made of it, too. Millais is hit or miss — when he’s good, he’s very, very good and when he’s not, he isn’t so much. This one is very fine. It’s oil on paper laid on canvas mounted on board. It lives in Connecticut at the Yale Center for British Art.

And tomorrow? Dunno yet. Presumably, two old bats and Olive Loaf hit the road again…

August 25, 2009 — 6:55 pm
Comments: 2

Help me out here, Mother

raccoon

Is there any sight more heartwarming than an old lady and her coon?

Yeah. I have done exactly jack shit today (that’s bugger-all to our British friends), so here’s a photo of my mother and friend that I ran across unpacking. That’s the last in a long series of pet raccoons she raised. It’s no longer legal to keep them on account of the rabies risk, but it was then.

My mother was extremely good with animals, but a raccoon makes a dangerous pet (and she had the scars to prove it). They’re very smart, very bitchy when they grow up and they have opposable thumbs — or as near as dammit.

They also like to shit high. After Mother died, I discovered the architectural high points of the house (the balcony, the sills) were a rich treasury of dessicated coonshit.

Who says I didn’t inherit anything?

April 14, 2009 — 7:35 pm
Comments: 18

Things that are ugly…

nan's chest

Isn’t this lovely? Why no, it is not. This is the ugliest scrap of ancient Weasel family legacy kitsch I own (and that’s saying a Very Great Deal). My heart clenched when I opened this box tonight. It’s bumblebee yellow and black…did I mention?

This handsome item was hand painted by my cousin Nan, who — as far as I know — was neither epileptic nor had a metal plate in her head of any kind. She was actually my grandmother’s first cousin, which makes me related to her only below the Mason Dixon line. Grandmother was a great friend to Cousin Nan, despite the terrible dark blotch on her past. How disappointed I was to learn Nan’s dark secret was a youthful d-i-v-o-r-c-e.

Cousin Nan was hot shit.

For most of her life, she was a seamstress nine months of the year, sewing fine gowns for rich ladies and saving her pennies. Then in the Summers, she would hop a banana boat for points South. That was back when freight boats always carried a few passengers (do they still?). She loved South America.

By the time I remember her, she had retired to California, very old and very deaf and unprepared to accept either. When she came to visit, she was a total liability in public. She would lean over in a movie theater and shout in your ear, “oh my god, would you look at that big fat woman in the next row?” Eh. Bless her.

By an odd coincidence, my dad and stepmother were in her home town for some kind of function and dropped by to visit her one day in the mid 1980s. First time ever, I think. My stepmother swears she looked up as they left and saw the curtain twitch.

At any rate, Cousin Nan was raped and murdered by a stranger later that day. It would be flattery to call her attacker a serial killer. He was an animal who had himself a brief, nasty spree…savaged a few women and got caught within the week. My dad was called to testify about the timing. Murderous asshole’s probably out by now.

Anyhow, we all took turns sticking each other with examples of Cousin Nan’s art. Because it’s horrible, but what are you going to do?

March 6, 2009 — 8:23 pm
Comments: 18