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The House

 

On the plans, it’s called the “Twenty-four Hundred Series Four Bedroom Trilevel”, built on Lot 10, Block 7 of the Town and Country Subdivision. It was completed in the summer of 1958.

My parents bought it in September 1968, just as I was starting first grade. A nice big corner lot, and lots of room for a family with five kids. A creek ran between the boulevards on the east side of the yard. The neighborhood was filled with kids our age. The grade school was a long block away, with woods behind it to explore.

Kodachrome

 

There are only two things I know for sure about this picture.  According to the calendar on the wall, it was taken in December of 1957.  And I found it in the collection of Kodachrome slides that I scanned after my Aunt died a few years ago.

I have one educated guess – it was taken during a hunting trip in northern (?) Wisconsin, presumably by my uncle who died more than 25 years ago.

Member Post

 

My mother died last Wednesday evening of injuries sustained in an automobile accident earlier in the day.  She was 94 years old.  She was unresponsive at the accident scene, and died at the hospital a few hours later.  My sister and her husband and I were with her when she passed.  As far as we […]

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My 2020 Reading List

 

A few years ago my brothers and I started keeping lists of all the books we read during the year and sharing them with each other at year’s end.

Since I’m unlikely to start and finish a book before midnight, here’s this year’s list:

Member Post

 

Apparently I have way too much time on my hands. In addition to watching all 23 movies of the Marvel Cinematic Universe series in order (two movies every saturday with my wife and sister-in-law between July and October), I managed to watch 101 movies this year (more than half were first time ever views, plus […]

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Member Post

 

My family has been discussing for a few months the possibility of getting a dog.  Now it’s suddenly gotten real.  A litter of purebred Golden Retrievers was born late last week.  We can lock in one of them, for possession sometime in early-mid January. I haven’t had a dog since we had the family dog […]

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Whistling Past the Graveyard

 

Is it possible this election result is exactly what we need to get past some of the divisiveness in our politics?

Work with me here. As things stand right now, it appears we’ll have a President Biden/Harris, with a Republican Senate and a narrower margin in the Democratic House (and a hopefully reliable Supreme Court).

“Gee, I’m Really Sorry Your Mom Blew Up, Ricky”

 

Better Off Dead was released 35 years ago tomorrow, on August 23rd, 1985.

I love this movie so much! It has everything — John Cusack before he became annoying, Diane Franklin at peak cuteness, a psychotic paper boy, Curtis “Booger” Armstrong, an antagonist named Stalin, Asian drag-racing brothers who talk like Howard Cosell, a claymation hamburger performing Van Halen, an appearance by Barney Rubble, homages to Rocky, Harold & Maude, The Graduate, and several other films that I’ve probably missed.

CNN’s Tendentious Trump Coverage

 

This headline story on CNN.com is not labeled as “analysis.” It appears to be a “news” story. Here are the opening paragraphs, with emphasis added.

President Donald Trump on Friday made an impassioned appeal to his base while in the shadow of Mount Rushmore instead of striking a unifying tone, railing against what he called a “merciless campaign” by his political foes to erase history by removing monuments some say are symbols of racial oppression.

1984 Was Supposed to be a Warning, Not a How-to Manual.

 

The following is a quote from 1984 by George Orwell:

Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.

Remember the Good Old Days, Way Back in March 2020?

 

From an editorial in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal. Emphasis added.

The latest data from a monthly survey of small businesses comes as a jarring reminder of what life was like back in the halcyon days of … March. On Thursday the National Federation of Independent Business will release last month’s polling of 627 of its members. A majority of the responses, the NFIB says, arrived before the coronavirus clampdown.

A Child Finds Out About Santa Claus

 

My ten-year-old son figured it out this week. The Easter Bunny too. At our house, we do family Christmas presents on Christmas Eve, then Santa delivers overnight. And on Easter Sunday, the Easter Bunny hides a basket for each kid. That Bunny is sneaky too – I think last Easter it took about 30 minutes of looking before one of the kids found theirs.

He’s been suspicious for a while, but we’ve held him off by saying, “C’mon, do you really think Dad would spend that much on Christmas presents?” – which is a pretty convincing argument in our house.

Member Post

 

A few years ago my brothers and I started keeping lists of the books we read, and shared them with each other at the end of the year. In 2019 I decided to keep a list of movies I watched too. They didn’t, so instead of sharing with them, I’ll share with Ricochet. Preview Open

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Visiting Bastogne – Battle of the Bulge

 

Tomorrow marks the 75th anniversary of the beginning of the Battle of the Bulge.

In October of 2015 two of my brothers and I traveled through parts of Europe retracing WWI and WWII battlefields, including two nights in the Bastogne area. The following are some pictures from what we saw in that part of the trip.

Member Post

 

The following is from a display in the Visitor Center at the American Cemetery outside of Luxembourg City: Nico Schroeder was born in Luxembourg City in 1934.  He had just reached elementary school when Hitler’s troops invaded and occupied Luxembourg in May 1940.  The Nazis tightened their control of the country in the following years, […]

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Member Post

 

The “OK” hand gesture is now a hate symbol, according to a new report by the Anti-Defamation League. The ADL added that symbol along with several others on Thursday to its long-standing database of slogans and symbols used by extremists. https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/26/us/adl-new-hate-symbols/index.html Preview Open

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Baseball Needs a Pitch Clock. Change My Mind.

 

Baseball is going to die a rapid death if they don’t do something drastic about the pace of play.

I’ve had full season tickets to the Milwaukee Brewers for 25 seasons. Before I got married and had kids I always went to 70-plus games a season. I’d even take half-day vacation time to go to the weekday day games. My best season in 2001 I attended a total of 85 games (two pre-season, two road games, and all 81 home games), and I only left one game early, it was a weeknight that it went into extra innings and I was the ride for a friend who couldn’t stay any longer.

I’ve sat through to the end of 16-1 blow-out losses (“Hey, three or four grand slams, we’re right back in this one”). One of my favorite baseball memories is attending double-headers on consecutive days in July 1997 – in the first game, Steve Woodard made his major league debut against Roger Clemens, gave up a lead-off double to Otis Nixon, then proceeded to strike out the side, set a league record by striking out 11 (or was it 12?) in his debut, and won the game 1-0. In the second game of that doubleheader, the Brewers turned their first Triple play in something like 17 years.

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