Faltkajak Pionier 450 S Assembled!

Forgot to mention this in my previous post, but this last weekend I found the time to complete assembly of my new Pionier 450 S.  My goal in the next week or two is to affix the keelstrip provided by the manufacturer back in about 1962.  The keel’s worn in some places, but not completely through the skin which I hope will remain serviceable for the next couple of years.  Assembled, this boat is beautiful and lightweight.  I love precise way in which all the parts fit together.  The gunwale or “thele” boards/stringers are a bit fiddly to attach fore and aft, but that was the most difficult part of the process.  This kayak comes with a very interesting spraydeck, and the wooden seat-bottom attaches interestingly.  Below are some rather bad-quality photos of the boat I took over the weekend.

Anniversary and Other Interesting Life Events

Today marks the 11th anniversary of my marriage to Caution-Lady.  Far and away the most surprising grace vouchsafed me by the Almighty.  An icy wind blew a dry, small, sparkly snowfall briefly this morning, in honor of the blizzard-like conditions we endured all those years ago.  Photographs show my young bride seated with a friend working on her wedding hair, her shell-shocked look declaring her sense that her perfect day had ruined by the wintry visitation of frozen water from above.  Siberian conditions forced us to cancel music, reception, and romantic getaway cottage; many of our guests were unable to attend, and we will forever remember those who showed up.

For the first time ever, instead of spending the day celebrating the anniversary of an admittedly terrific nephew’s birth, my wife and I spent the day doing something as a family with our son.  Took off to Chattanooga mid-morning, ate lunch at one of my wife’s favorite restaurants there, and spent several hours with our little boy at the Discovery Museum. I know, not very romantic, but we love that little boy, and he’s only a toddler once.

Back in early December (’09) we attended an agency Christmas party and got to see some Nashville friends.  Later we had lunch together at the Farmer’s Market downtown.  Jon, in a stage whisper, informed us of the presence of “the mayor (of Nashville) over there” seated behind me and to my right.  Having coffee with a buddy, apparently.  I thought it would be rude to snap his picture, so I left him alone.

Nashville Farmer's Market

Not exactly a Roman basilica, but a lot of windows up there to admit sunlight to the building's cavernous interior

Tennessee capitol building skyline

A bad picture of the Nashville skyline shot from the farmer's market parking-lot. That's the Tennessee state capitol building at right.

I got from my wife for Christmas a couple more gigabytes of RAM for my aging scratch-and-dent bargain dual G5 Power-Mac.  Legacy apps, and those available at the time of the machine’s production are more interesting to overburden now that my computer has the extra memory.  Artmatic 1.1 is a particular favorite – animating the designs can be accomplished with or without sound.  If sound is employed, the animation can be made to respond to sound-in, to an audio file, or to the animation’s mathematics in any of several ways, one of which is pleasantly melodic and is represented as a selection graphically by a line of four or five miniscule notes.  The program’s current version can be found here.  An early version Groovemaker froze while still generating and playing a complicated house-synth loop and had to be closed by Force Quit.  A current version of Groovemaker can be found here.

Artmatic 1.1 Saved Pict

I've been monkeying around again with an OS 9 legacy app, Artmatic 1.1. Extra RAM makes old progs more interesting, even when running in Classic.

Octagonal Window

Frozen world beyond the pane

I took a few days off work, and we drove into the frozen north for a visit with my wife’s family the week before Christmas.  Almost the entire extended family gathered the day we arrived.  We exchanged gifts, ate a lot of really good food and desserts.  The following Monday, the more immediate family exchanged gifts.   One of the things I’d asked for this year was Amanda J. Fields scholarly analysis of the Basil Rathbone – Nigel Bruce Sherlock Holmes films produced by Twentieth Century Fox and then by Universal Pictures.  While the scholarly, research-paperesque style of prose is tiresome, the subject matter covered is interesting enough the mind of the reader filters out the tedium of academic convention.  If you’re at all interested in motion pictures as wartime propaganda, genre films, and the work of those two now deceased actors, as well as the work of those who directed them, you should read the book.  Click on the image for the volume’s Amazon sales and review page.

England's Secret Weapon by Amanda J. Field

I read this book while indoors in the frozen north the week before Christmas

I did manage to keep my feeding mostly under control except for a few days in the frozen northern heartland.  I wasn’t prepared with fitness togs appropriate to the climactic conditions, so stuck around the house for a few days, watched a lot of television, and read.

Snowy Woods

We took Seventy-Six for a farm-truck ride into the snowy woods. No wolves, nor hunters, nor deer did we meet.

Seventy-Six was pleased he got to switch the truck over to four-wheel-drive

Our little Seventy-Six seemed to enjoy his gifts.  His favorite toy was a Fisher-Price vacuum cleaner manufactured in about 1986 and purchased from Ebay for a total, including shipping, of about $15.00.  It requires no batteries, and when pushed uses friction (or magic of some sort) to produce electricity needed to light a small bulb.  Also, the roller motion pushes air into the handle that moves around the colored particles imprisoned therein behind clear plastic.  Current iterations of this legacy toy require batteries to operate fully, and look a lot cheaper and less like ‘real’ vacuum cleaners.

Seventy-Six putting his new toy to good use

Now that the Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year holiday seasonal activities are finished, our household is getting back to normal.

An unsuspecting populace

Seventy-Six and I are building more elaborate towers now, and still knocking them down. This unsuspecting city-state little knows that Kidzilla's about to visit.