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Get it together, Germany!

More Adventures at Ebay. I don’t know how this…object showed up in my search stream, but it’s a latex fetish mask of some kind. It’s already sold, but listing is still up, if for some perverted reason you wanted to see it in color.

It’s from Germany. They’re always from Germany. Germans are the world’s highest per capita consumers of sex toys (I read that in a true crime book once).

I meant to link to some of the scarier and sillier examples, but honestly…it’s just gross. I couldn’t do that to you on a Friday night before the week before Christmas.

Hit the link and check out the ‘similar sponsored items’ if you gotta know.

Good weekend, everyone!



December 16, 2022 — 7:32 pm
Comments: 8

Adventures in Ebay

Always on the lookout for a nice statue of Bast, I was trawling Ebay and…yikes! What is this? Here it is in full color.

Is that supposed to be a dead cat? It’s not. It’s, like, squirrel colored. And it looks like its front legs are missing. And the tips of its ears. Is it a taxidermy? Is it supposed to be a mummy? Did he wrestle this desert squirrel for the little Bast statue?

Here’s a video where he seems to be pretending to find it in the sand next to the unfortunate beast. He’s wearing dish gloves.

Here’s the description:

You Are Bidding on Rare Antique Ancient Egyptian Statue God Cat Bastet since God Bastet Was Strongest God for protection for person also protection for his familey , home land since they worshipped God Cat to protect them while down you can see Goddess Isis Standing as women while goddess Isis was goddess of Good Health cure medicine while over her their is Winged Scarab which was Symbol of Good Luck Happy Life Wealth since these is very Rare Statue For God Cat ( Goddess Bastet) shown as cat which was made for king to worship her since they Have mAde Such Statue for God Cat to protect king also to protect his familey , castle also land of egypt since they saw cat was always protecting homes from mice Rats snakes scropions so they too her as goddess of Protection while you can find down goddess Isis shown as women as they put her to bring for king hood health cure medecine while up their is scarab which was used to bring good luck happy life wealth such statue was made during king life he wirshipped it also was taken to Grave After Death.

I think we’ll take our chances with scropions.

December 15, 2022 — 7:53 pm
Comments: 6


We did the tree tonight. And a lovely, smelly tree it is, too.

Our wifi router is definitely going. We’re having to reset it several times a day. Worse, something about it has jiggered the wifi card in my desktop machine – I keep having to restart it to get wifi back even if the modem is working.

In short, my connection is tenuous at the moment. I’m typing this on the little laptop I usually use to read Kindle books. We’ve ordered a new router, but god knows if it’ll get here before Christmas. The Post Office is striking periodically over Christmas (as are the train companies). Including Christmas Eve. Aren’t unions wonderful?

Anyhoo, I may lose comms. If that happens, I can at least check in with my phone and tell you so.

December 14, 2022 — 7:47 pm
Comments: 2

Doesn’t exactly strike terror

Armet with Mask Visor in the Form of a Rooster
ca. 1530
German, probably Augsburg
metmuseum collection

I mean, it’s a miracle of steel sculpture – and far be it from me to impugn the courage of roosters – but it’s hard to see this as anything other than a helmet with a lil’ chicken face.

They also have one with a lil’ people face, that’s apparently more common. It has a kind of Simpsons look about it, don’t it?

Our router has been flaking out on the regular today, so I’d better hit ‘publish’ before it goes again.

December 13, 2022 — 8:15 pm
Comments: 7

It snew

Not sure where the picture was taken; I stole it from this netweather article. BTW, I finally broke down and subscribed to the pay-for version of Netweather. I use the site so much – seeing a satellite image is a gazillion times more helpful than a weather forecast – that I wanted the additional tools.

Like, I can make the satellite picture animate for a period as long as 24 hours. This was a real eye-opener. I’m used to weather that proceeds sedately West to East. The occasional hurricane coming North up the Atlantic coast. The occasional winter storm coming South from Canada. That’s about it.

Britain’s weather goes where it pleases. This particular storm consisted of a chain of small clouds moving counter-clockwise around the island, hugging the coast. Damn thing looked sentient. Wild!

We got a little of it, but again and again I watched the clouds dissipate just as they reach us. I see that pattern a lot. We’re in some kind of microclimate here.

Snow in England isn’t unheard-of, of course, but it’s pretty unusual before Christmas. As are these freezing temps. Sure is pretty, though.

December 12, 2022 — 8:21 pm
Comments: 4

Behold, I have found it!

The ultimate redneck song title: Heart Like a Truck.

I got a heart like a truck
It’s been drug through the mud
Runs on dreams and gasoline
And that old highway holds the key
It’s got a lead foot down when it’s leavin’
Lord knows it’s taken a hell of a beatin’
A little bit of love is all that it’s needin’
But it’s good as it is tough
I got a heart like a truck

Though for the ultimate redneck song lyric, I’d go with Garth Brooks: “Papa loved Mama, Mama loved men/Mama’s in the graveyard, Papa’s in the pen.” (Heard that when I was driving across Nashville years ago and almost went off the road).

Yes, I’ve been listening to country music radio lately. Our kitchen radio is tuned to Classic FM, which is middle- to low-brow light classical. (“They play movie music,” sniffs Uncle B). Lately, though, they’ve been playing lots of mawkish tinkly piano music – the kind of thing they use as background music for mindfulness meditation apps. No thanks.

Radio 3 has got a more sophisticated playlist, but they’re also the station most likely to indulge itself in the occasional hour of atonal mood music on the Peruvian nose flute.

Thanks to the Internet, I have choices! There was a country station in Providence I really liked. I’ve been frustrated trying to find it again, but I have just found it at last: WCTK-FM Cat Country. The fun part of that is trying to remember all the places in the traffic reports and all the stores in the ads. It’s fading fast, y’all.

Oh, but I have even older braincells! Been streaming one of my favorite old stations from Nashville: 103.3 WKDF. Though I have a strong feeling it was a rock station in my youth. I wouldn’t have been caught dead as a 16 year old Nashvillian listening to a country station.

I can occasionally remember some of these places, though Nashville has changed enormously, especially in the last twenty years. The last time I tried to drive there it scared the poop out of me.

Have a good weekend, everyone. Going to be viciously cold in Old Blighty.

December 9, 2022 — 8:16 pm
Comments: 13


I got an email from a friend tonight. She’s got four new hens, all laying nicely – but one of them is now transitioning into a cockerel. It’s the latest thing.

You’ve probably heard of this phenomenon before and almost as surely heard it poopooed as an old wives tale. I got curious one day and chased it down and it’s (kind of) real.

Right. In hens, only the ovary on the left is normally functional. The one on the right is a sort of generic gonad that typically doesn’t develop. Nature is weird. If something happens to that left ovary – let’s say a cyst – the one on the right might wake up.

And it wakes up mad. It becomes a frankengonad – or, to use the real word, an ovotestis. As you deduce from the name, it’s a maybe ovary, maybe testicle. It doesn’t know. It doesn’t matter. It secretes all kinds of puzzling hormones and that’s that.

So the hen may develop male characteristics – big comb and wattles. Saddle feathers. A cock-a-doodle-doo – but not an actual cock. The changes are all purely cosmetic and my friend has almost certainly lost this hen as a layer.

Links for the curious here and here.

The picture, however, is my proper fine boy Mo. He’s got allllll the secondary sexual characteristics and the ladies love him.

December 8, 2022 — 8:09 pm
Comments: 6

Asneth Jones (1786-1867)

From a site on cartes-des-visites:

A portrait of Asneth Jones of Winchelsea, a carte-de-visite published in 1867 by R. B. Thorpe, 110 High Street, Rye. (The christian name Asneth was also spelt Asseneth or Asenath) Asneth Jones (born c1786) had acquired local celebrity status because she had sat on the knee of the Methodist preacher John Wesley during his visit to Winchelsea in 1790. John Wesley (1702-1791) preached his last open air sermon at Winchelsea on 7th October 1790. Asneth Jones died towards the end 1867 at the age of 84.

At the base of the card itself, it says:

In the year 1790, the Rev. John Wesley preached at Winchelsea his last outdoor Sermon, and was the guest of Mr Jones, Asneth’s father. The chair is the one in which Mr Wesley sat with Asneth on his knee and is always considered as the Preacher’s Chair.

I wonder where the chair is today. I did a quick google in case it had come up for auction, but no luck (lots of cool old chairs called the preacher’s chair, though).

Curious about her name, Wikipedia tells me:

Asenath is a minor figure in the Book of Genesis. Asenath was a high-born, aristocratic Egyptian woman. She was the wife of Joseph and the mother of his sons, Manasseh and Ephraim. There are two Rabbinic approaches to Asenath: One holds that she was an ethnic Egyptian woman that converted to marry Joseph. This view has her accepting the Lord before marriage and then raising her two sons in the tenets of Judaism. This presents her as a positive example of conversion, and places her among the devout women converts. The other approach argues she was not Egyptian by descent, but was from the family of Jacob. Traditions that trace her to the family of Jacob relate that she was born as the daughter of Dinah. Dinah was raped by Shechem and gave birth to Asenath, whom Jacob left on the wall of Egypt, where she was later found by Potiphar. She was then raised by Potiphar’s wife and eventually married Joseph.

A bit of old history and a bit of old, old, old history.

December 7, 2022 — 8:47 pm
Comments: 6

Guess the product…

It is…drumroll, please…a garden gate hook and eye fastener.

It’s to fasten the wonky door on my wonky chicken house. But the door is so wonky, I can’t get the hook to meet the eye. Guys, I’m seriously about to thrown it into the water.

December 6, 2022 — 8:25 pm
Comments: 10

India rubber, uses

The lining of my wellies is coming loose. This calls for rubber cement! Or whatever they call rubber cement over here.

More adventures in finding what the hell I’m looking for in a foreign land.

Ah. Wikipedia helpfully tells me the Brits call it cow gum. Why? Near as I can figure, it was a brand name. As are Marabu-Fixogum and Copydex.

A poetic people.

An enterprising Ebay user calling herself longsufferingwife1 is selling fifty year old vintage cow gum from her father’s gallery. It was always an art studio staple, but I don’t think it’s changed much over the years.

It’s literally just rubber and a solvent. Solvent evaporates, leaves behind plain old rubber. Brilliant for things like fixing my damn boots.

Rubber cement is one of those adhesives that sticks better to itself than anything else. You could always get the best bond by coating both surfaces, letting them dry and then sticking them together.

Which brings us to the very best use for rubber cement: RUBBER CEMENT SCARS! Slather cement on yourself, let it dry, then pucker it up. It makes a long-lasting, truly convincing, seriously disfiguring scar.

On slow days in the art department, the boss would sometimes come in and find everyone at their desks sporting gnarly facial wounds.

December 5, 2022 — 8:05 pm
Comments: 6