Jeff Duntemann's Contrapositive Diary Rotating Header Image

Odd Lots

  • How about a steampunk Segway? It’s self-balancing as long as its rider is self-balancing, I guess–and certainly burns more calories.
  • Or (while you’re pretending to be King Edward VII) a steampunk snowboard? Are there any steampunk types who are my age, or is it all a twentysomething crowd? I recently saw an antique foot-powered dentist’s drill machine circa 1890. Nice ornate cast ironwork and bronze–and made me very glad I’m 120 years away from it.
  • If you use Linux, staythehell out of Boston. It’s considered prima facie evidence of criminal activity. Damn, those people need another invasion of the Mooninites. (Thanks to Bruce Baker for the link.)
  • Ah, the price of increasing popularity: There is now a Mac botnet launching DDoS attacks. (Or…I wonder…could Symantec be about to launch a new Mac security product?)
  • Our TV Guide listings stopped working on Comcast basic analog cable a few weeks ago. We thought it was our TV–and the Comcast people were less than helpful–but apparently it’s a consequence of the big move to digital TV. The TV Guide listings data rode in on an analog sidecar to the analog PBS signal, and now that PBS has gone all-digital, there’s no sidecar anymore. (Thanks to Bill Roper for digging this one up–he has a similar problem with his DVR.)
  • There is a pizza place in San Diego called Killer Pizza from Mars. (Thanks to Pete Albrecht for the link.) Interestingly, my best friend Art and I did some brainstorming about opening a pizza place in Rogers Park called Tranquility Base when we got out of college in recession-year 1974, but nothing came of it. (He would have been the cook. I would have been the waiter; probably the one thing that paid less than fixing Xerox machines.)
  • They do things big in Nebraska: The last full week of September sees the Nebraska Junk Jaunt, in which ten midstate counties hold a collective garage sale along a 300-mile route, with 500+ vendors participating, and that’s only the ones they know about. Start early, see them all! (Damn, I’m tempted!)
  • Finally, it’s April 17, and we’re in the midst of a blizzard here in Colorado Springs. The carpet cleaners had to postpone the job, and we had to cancel our gym session today. We may get a foot or more between here and Sunday, and peeking out the window I already see 3″ or so. This has been the damndest coldest, longest winter in our six years here. Has Al Gore been sneaking around the Springs somewhere?


  1. Aki says:

    “I recently saw an antique foot-powered dentist’s drill machine circa 1890. Nice ornate cast ironwork and bronze–and made me very glad I’m 120 years away from it.”

    In the seventies foot-powered dentist’s drills were used by the Finnish peacekeeping forces. Reminds me about Spanish Inquisition.

  2. Aki says:

    Everyone knows anorexia, but how about Geneorexia nervosa?

  3. Rich, N8UX says:

    We used to make a run through the 127 yard sale, but because of the increasing popularity, it is quickly becoming a log jam of people going nowhere. Like trying to see everything at the Dayton Hamvention in a day.

    1. Ha! So it’s not something the Nebraskans invented. I wonder how many others are out there–certainly I’ve heard of nothing like that here in Colorado.

      I need to get back to Dayton. I was last there in 1986, and bought my first synthesized HT that visit, but because I flew in I could only buy a few relatively small things, though I saw a couple of 6M tube rigs that tore mightily at my heart. The trip was notable because my local friends there took a bunch of us over to the Air Force museum, where I got to lay hands on the last intact XB-70, which I still consider the coolest, meanest looking air-breather in human history.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *