Friday, August 31, 2012

A rant. I just love how the word "liberal" is a dirty word for some people. It was the fucking douchebag liberal scum who got you your 40-hour work week, Social Security, Medicare, civil rights, women's right to vote, gay rights, and so on. And what have the conservatives given us lately? Hatred of science, hatred of Mexicans, hatred of gay people, hatred of education, hatred of sex, and lots of other fucking bullshit. They seem to think that they shouldn't pay any taxes and yet money will magically fucking appear to pay for the military and the healthcare benefits of Congress people, which, by the way, are so much fucking better than the healthcare benefits you and I will ever, ever have. So go ahead and call me a liberal. And while you are at it, call me a faggot too. Because I am that liberal faggot who isn't going to sit around and let some fucking scumbag Republicans tell me that I can't get married, can't work this job, can't serve in the military and all the other fucking bullshit that fucking conservatives who believe in "smaller government" keep babbling on and on about because they are so fucking filled with hate and fear. End of fucking rant.

This was after reading something written by a Republican woman accusing all liberals of being douchebags who call people names and hate rich people.

Just for the record, I don't hate rich people. I know some very rick folks. I read Martha Stewart's blog and admire what she has been able to accomplish. But I do think that rich people should pay their fair share of taxes. The fact that Mitt Romney supposedly pays 13 percent on his $20+ million annual income, solely because it is "capital gains" is just bullshit. Just pay your fair share. I do, and I don't mind my tax dollars going to do the things I don't know how to do (military, medicine, etc) or want to do (sewer maintenance).

Things I like: My new "old" Asiatic Pheasant brown transferprint serving bowl.

Asiatic Pheasant.

It dates to before 1891. Exactly how old, I can't tell (the maker's mark is blurry). I bought it for $29 at the antique store near Evan's new place, that was a bargain.

I'll have to pull out my other antique serving dishes and show them off too.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The sunsets in Flagstaff are pretty, the clouds are so close to the ground.

Along Interstate 17.

I spent much of Saturday in an anti-histamine haze. I did awaken enough to make a delicious strawberry cake. I didn't have enough white sugar, so I replaced 1/2 cup with brown sugar. I'm definitely making this cake again.


The next morning we went looking for wildflowers.


The distant fields were bright yellow.

Evan and Homer.

Evan stopped the truck so I could go say hello to four young pigs. They were so happy to see me, they ran over to the fence and snorted hello. They wanted me to scratch their little heads. Pigs are just like dogs, I really, really don't see how people can be wicked and eat them.

Me and two of the pigs.

At 11:00 I hopped in the Fiesta and drove to the Phoenix airport and hopped on an airplane and flew to Albuquerque and then drove a rental car to Santa Fe, where I checked into the nicest hotel I have ever stayed in. It would have been perfect except I was by myself and I kept thinking how much I wanted Evan to be there.

The next morning I drove east to Pecos National Historic Park. I climbed down into the kiva.


The Pecos Pueblo ruins are enormous and I wandered along the trail, admiring the occasional wall poking up and the sherds of pottery lying everywhere.

I did not see any snakes.

The Spaniards came and built a church, which was destroyed in the 1680 Pueblo Revolt. They later built another church and stayed for a while, and the last of the Pecos people walked away in 1838, decimated by European diseases.

Second Pecos church.

The Park Service has to maintain the adobe ruins, which otherwise would melt away in the rain and wind.

Arched doorways.

The museum inside had interesting exhibits. My favorite pot was a reminder that people once lived at the site.


I drove east on Interstate 25 and visited Fort Union. Back in 1987 and 1988 I worked as an archaeologist at the other Fort Union, in North Dakota.

Fort Union, 1861-1891.

The fort served to protect the area and as a supply depot. Scraps of adobe walls and brick chimneys remain.

Sunflower and ruins.

Park Service employees, paid with our socialistic tax dollars, were busy maintaining the adobe walls.

Quartermaster buildings.

A walk around the site gave you a good sense of the scale of the fort. What was missing were the hundreds of soldiers and civilians who once lived and worked there. I was the only visitor.


I drove back to Santa Fe, gave my talk (which went very well, as unusual). Later I went downtown Santa Fe and walked around the expensive shops, most of which were closed by 7 PM.


I hate eating alone, and the restaurants were so fancy and expensive. I eventually went back to the hotel and had a fancy and expensive meal there. The vegetarian entree was mediocre.

At least the soup was delicious.

I got up very early Tuesday morning, drove to Albuquerque, flew to Phoenix, drove to Tucson, went to work, came home, slept, woke up with a migraine. Next time I go to Santa Fe, Evan will have to come with me to keep me company.

Monday, August 20, 2012

My clothes smell like gunpowder, I guess because I was standing close to the cannon both times it was fired. The City of Tucson was formally established 237 years ago today. An Irish man employed by the Spanish government selected the location, which happened to be located on prehistoric Native American villages, some of which I have documented through the years on this blog. Patrick and I went to attend the festivities. This year it was held at night, for the first time, and the crowd was much bigger.
Big crowd. 

Many people showed up in period costumes- from the Spanish, Mexican, and American Territorial periods.
Three hoop-skirted Confederate ladies.

I was sweating up a storm in my vest, bowtie, and tophat.

Patrick and Homer.

I showed Patrick around the park and he admired the buildings, artifacts, and the large mural.

Good doggy.

The ceremony began with the firing of the four-pound cannon.


And as ceremonies tend to do, it lasted a long, fretful time. I think to make it more exciting, there should be door prizes.
The girl is a Yaqui deer dancer.

I looked up and admired the pretty sky. Several times I thought it was going to rain, but it didn't.

Beautiful sky.

After the flag ceremony, Pledge of Allegiance, National Anthem, reading of the founding document in Spanish and English, Proclamation, and additional flags, the cannon was fired again.

The fuse is lit and waiting to be applied.

Once again, the cannon roared, and the sulphuric smoke filled the air.

Segundo Boom.

I'm going to buy a gray tophat to replace my cheap black one. It was alright as ceremony goes, and the cake was delicious. I was glad to see so many people (hundreds) at the Presidio Park. Of all of the work that I have done here in Tucson, this is probably my proudest achievement.

Monday, August 13, 2012

We made tie-dye t-shirts for our Arts and Crafts Interlude. I had never participated in this messy hippy subculture phenomenon. First we purchased the necessary items. Then we rubber banded the white t-shirts.


Then I poured water into the applicator bottles and only got a little dye on my hands. The dye was then applied to the shirts.


Ready to sit overnight.

 When completed the shirts were brightly colored. We wrapped them in plastic overnight. The next morning Evan washed them in the washing machine, and Voila! new shirts.

I actually remember the 1960s.

We also went on a drive through an area that had been burned a few years ago in a forest fire. We paused and looked at an archaeology site.

 Evan and me.

Don't leave your camp fire with embers, of I will come and beat the crap out of you.
Burned side of road.

The monsoon rains have been heavy up north and the wildflowers were blooming everywhere.

Unburned side, see all of the nice, unburnt trees?

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

I stopped at the Farmer's Market and the cute farmer had pickling cucumbers for sale, so I bought some.

Six pickling cucumbers, two leeks, five small yellow squash, miniature peppers, a clove of garlic, and a container of jalapeno soft goat cheese (with vegetable rennet).

I sliced up the cucumbers, leaks, and a red onion and soaked them in salt water overnight. Then I rinsed them well and cut up half a yellow pepper and a whole red pepper. Then I put 7 cups vinegar, 3.5 cups sugar, spices (cinnamon, cloves, pickling spice), and the chopped up veggies to cook to a boil while I got the jars and lids ready.

On the stove.

I have never made bread and butter pickles before, so it was an experiment. I felt clumsy putting them in the jars. A clove of garlic and a small hot pepper went into each jar. I ended up with six pints.

Bread and butter pickles.

The last jar wasn't quite filled, so I got to put that one in the fridge to cool. They turned out great, perhaps a little too spicy for my mother.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

So yesterday was Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day and today all of those protest meals are coming out as shit. Very appropriate.

Supposedly this grand event was a protest for First Amendment rights or some similar nonsense. It is strange then, isn't it, that so many of the protesters were willing to openly state that it was all a big group hug for faggot haters. A visit to Mike Huckabee or the Chick-Fil-A Facebook page was sufficient to prove this point. The anti-gay remarks vastly outnumbered the First Amendment remarks.

So lucky that no one I knew ate there yesterday. First of all, I really don't approve of eating chickens. Remember Henny Penny, the bestest chicken in the world? Why would anyone want to eat chickens? They are full of personality, curious, interesting little creatures that sometimes poop on you.

Unfortunately, some of my friends discovered that their friends and family members marched down and had a hate sandwich with a side order of bigotry. Many posted pictures of themselves proudly eating this breaded piece of factory meat that would never rot if left outside in the sun. And some of these people had the balls to say out loud, "Why, I have gay friends! Gay friends that are going to hell and shouldn't be allowed to marry, but friends nonetheless."

Really? I argued with a couple of women online about this. One of them was foolish enough to say the Bible bans gay marriage. I told her to find the specific phrase. Of course she couldn't, because there isn't a particular phrase that specifically bans same sex marriage. She changed the subject, but not before telling me I was not a friend of our mutual friend. That particular mutual friend who called me today because he was so upset that these very same people supported hate. I'm sorry, but it is not possible to be someone's friend and then state openly that they are not your equal in terms of basic civil rights.

In many ways, this was a good thing to happen. We gay folks got to wake up a bit and see that there are a huge number of fundamentalists who simply hate our homo guts. It was a virtual lynching at a fast food restaurant. The culture wars are ongoing, just like the racism that has broken out into the open as white people become the minority in America. These people will likely never change, their resentment will grow and grow as courts and northern states legalize same sex marriage. It will be Roe V Wade II.

At the same time I got to hear from numerous straight friends telling me how disgusted they were and how much they support me. Although I didn't say this to them, I appreciate this more than they can ever know.

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