Saturday, April 19, 2014

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Old Cemeteries And Good Intentions

You would hardly know from a casual look that this hilltop in rural Hamilton County is a cemetery.  The last burial that we find in records was in 1915, and it hasn't been too many years since it was wrecked.  The intentions were good.

Rawl's Cemetery had eastern red-cedars growing all over it, and someone had the idea that if they sold the trees, they would have money to take care of the cemetery.  The sale was done, the trees were cut, and the care was hiring someone to mow the cemetery with a  tractor and bush-hog.  The destruction began, and continued until the money was gone.

Stones were knocked down by the tractor and mower.  Some stones landed on the corresponding grave and were pressed down by the tractor, but most were broken and moved from where they belong.  The 
 good news is that the person mowing this cemetery didn't heave the stones into the adjoining woods, so 
many of the stones can still be located for record-keeping.

Graves can be found this time of year by the flowers planted generations ago at the headstones, and many of the graves are sunken, so the markers can be found, such as they are.

Little Dora Manchester is one that we have a photo of from the 1970's.  Her headstone was intact, and standing at her grave back then.  We found her again, but pieces are missing.  She died in 1863.  Daylilies have covered most of the cemetery now, and that seems to be keeping the ground fairly clear, except for oaks that are migrating out from the nearby timber.  We can beat the trees back with no impact to the stones but restoration of this cemetery will be difficult due to the heavy damage that occurred after the cedar trees were removed.  What a sad mess.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

And, We Are Almost Out Of Firewood!

Country Boys Learn This Lesson Fast

Tractor tires are great grippers, and they will really pull you in lots of different soil conditions.  The angled lugs also have great mud-moving ability that you won't appreciate until you see it in action.  Once is enough for most of us, though I did see one boy from Chicagoland who stuck a borrowed tractor to the axle twice in one day, and couldn't understand why.  Study the picture of this old Case tractor....

Click The Pic To Enlarge

Note the 1/2 of the wheel has the lugs packed with mud.  When your load stops you in a muddy field and those wheels begin to spin, the lugs are pumping mud out from under the tire.  Figure about 1" per lug.  These tires have about two dozen lugs around the circumference, so the 1/2 turn dropped the tractor one foot.  You can't fight it by gunning the engine; you have to shut down.  This tractor is hitched to a pull-type disc without wheels and hydraulics to lift it, so it will have to be unhitched, and then the tractor should jump right out of the holes that it made.  If the driver had let the wheels spin he would have had the rear end of the tractor flat on the ground in another turn.  It doesn't take long to wreck your day, and many farmers have been hurt or killed over the years trying to extricate tractors from this predicament.  One farmer I heard about chained a fence post to each wheel, thinking that the tractor would lift itself up and out of the situation.  He paid for his inexperience with his life when the tractor flipped over backward instead of going forward.  Listen to the old-timers if you fool around with old equipment.  It will save you a lot of trouble, and might save your life.

Nobody Knows...

This song came around in my head today, and it's the right time of year to share it again.

Here's The Dirt On Microstamping

This NRA video lays out the facts on microstamping, and shows it as the fraud it is.  I saw this first on Ruger's website, and Ruger CEO Michael Fifer does a great job explaining the problems with the concept.  Basically, firearms are not metal-forming machinery, and the technology does not exist to make it work.  Even if it did work, the criminal elements would have a variety of methods available to avoid being caught by microstamped casing evidence. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Ruger's Aucton To Benefit The Light Foundation

This week Ruger is auctioning a revolver that is still in the current catalog.  It's a Blackhawk in .30 Carbine, with a 7 1/2" barrel.  This revolver was manufactured in 1977, and has been residing in Ruger's safe for all these years.  I remember visiting with a Korean War vet about forty years ago, and he was overjoyed when talking about Ruger making a gun in .30 Carbine, because he had carried an M1 Carbine when he fought in Korea.  It's a popular caliber with many Blackhawk owners, and you will like it if you buy it.  100% of the proceeds go to benefit the Light Foundation, so Click Over to read all about it and place your bid.        Update:  Sold for $905!

Do You Remember The Joyful Feeling... felt as a child, when you returned to school, and smelled the hallways and the school kitchen, and saw your schoomates, after several days at home with the mumps, measles, or other childhood malady?  That feeling came to mind last week when I returned to work after three weeks off, and felt none of that joy.  I've worked for over 48 years with only two weeks of unemployment, and I guess that I am losing my enthusiasm.  Going back to work brought this poem to mind.  I heard it first from Cliff Arquette (as Charlie Weaver) and the author has never revealed himself.  It's timely for us old dudes.

    My Get-Up-And-Go Has Got Up and Went

    Old age is golden, or so I’ve heard said,
    But sometimes I wonder, as I crawl into bed,
    With my ears in a drawer, my teeth in a cup,
    My eyes on the table until I wake up.
    As sleep dims my vision, I say to myself:
    Is there anything else I should lay on the shelf?
    But, though nations are warring, and Congress is vexed,
    We’ll still stick around to see what happens next!
      How do I know my youth is all spent?
      My get-up-and-go has got up and went!
      But, in spite of it all, I’m able to grin
      And think of the places my getup has been!
    When I was young, my slippers were red;
    I could kick up my heels right over my head.
    When I was older my slippers were blue,
    But still I could dance the whole night through.
    Now I am older, my slippers are black.
    I huff to the store and puff my way back.
    But never you laugh; I don’t mind at all:
    I’d rather be huffing than not puff at all!

      How do I know my youth is all spent?
      My get-up-and-go has got up and went!
      But, in spite of it all, I’m able to grin
      And think of the places my getup has been!
    I get up each morning and dust off my wits,
    Open the paper, and read the Obits.
    If I’m not there, I know I’m not dead,
    So I eat a good breakfast and go back to bed!

      How do I know my youth is all spent?
      My get-up-and-go has got up and went!
      But, in spite of it all, I’m able to grin
      And think of the places my getup has been!
       Well, I'm still a wage slave and can't go back to bed, but the sentiment of this poem is right.  Every morning when I wake up, it's like Groundhog Day.  I just went straight from reading glasses to tri-focals, tinnitus has been my constant companion for twenty years, and I don't walk a 40 as fast as I used to.  I guess I need to get out and burn, cut, or shoot something.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Pop A Pair Of Postals, and Send Mr. Completely Get-Well-Wishes!
 If you have been checking Mr. Completely's blog you know by now that he is in the hospital because of triple bypass surgery.  Because of that, he hasn't posted the March scores yet, so I want you all to show Mr. C some love and send him more targets to score when he is up and around.  I know nothing would make him happier than getting a bunch of Well-Wishes in his In Box with target scans attached.  So, head over to his blog, roll down the page to his March e-Postal instructions and print your targets.  Do it this weekend, because he will be up and around soon, ending the March contest by posting the scores.
While you are making preparations to head to the range be sure and print out the April target from the Couserveative UAW Guy's blog, and shoot that contest tool  These monthly contests are great for honing your trigger skills, and you will enjoy the fellowship with bloggers and blog followers.

Not My Victrola

Cobblestones is a nice little fox-trot by Ted Lewis in 1927. The slide show is a great bonus.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Tree Planting Payoff

Crabapple trees are a common landscape tree, and most are planted because they fit in restricted spaces, and they have showy colors from both flowers and fruit.  The fruit is more important than most of us realize.  Northward bound robins feed on these trees, and this week I saw a flock of Cedar Waxwings feasting on the colorful fruit. 

These trees can be used in urban or rural settings.  Plant them away from sidewalks so folks don't track the little apples into homes.  Expect to see robins and turtledoves nest in these trees.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Walking The Plank

 We put up a couple new Wood Duck boxes this spring, so we have a total of three around the pond now.  This one went up on a cypress that is out in the water, and I had to walk the plank to get up in the tree.

It was a bit awkward, but I didn't lose any tools in the pond.

There is a pair of Woodies that just moved into a box we can watch from the house.  The female likes to land on top of the box and crane her neck around to look inside before she goes in.  We've been reading about these pretty little ducks, and predators really hit them hard.  Snakes, squirrels, coons, possums and turtles all prey on the little ducklings, and it's a wonder that any of them survive.  I hope ours get lucky.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Looking For A Hero

This cute little Studebaker would be a fine, rare vehicle for restoration, and it might get lucky, since it sits along a state highway in rural Wabash County, Illinois. 

Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation

The collectors are piling on for this week's Ruger auction.  The firearm is an early (under 1000 Serial Number) Number 1 rifle, made in 1967, and used by none other than Mr. William Ruger.  This rifle is in the versatile and useful .308 caliber, so it's a gun you can use for hunting and recreational shooting.  Click over to Ruger's GunBroker page and read all about it.  This fine, desirable rifle will sell mid-day, Wednesday, April 9, 2014.  100 % of the proceeds will go to benefit the Light Foundation.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Tuesday Turbo Boost

I've enjoyed this song for many years, and now I see that It was featured in a movie way back in 1945

From "Bring On The Girls," 1945.


Good comments make blogging and YouTubing worthwhile, and on a little blog like this one, the mailbox ususally echoes like Charley Brown's.  But today we got a good one.  My little brother shared one of the cat bite slide shows with a friend who just agreed to cat-sit.  Here is what he had to say after seeing the results of a cat bite:

Here are photos of the progression from Day 1 to Day 15. Surgery was on Day 7. The picc line will come out this week, and then I can go back to work.

I have handled the cat that bit me since I've been home....with WELDING GLOVES! I sure don't want to repeat this experience.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Not My Victrola: Peel Off Those Long-Johns And Have A Good Soak!

Here is one of my old favorites again, this time, performed by Vaughn De Leath.

e-Postal Tactics

Trying for the big points on an e-Postal target can be a challenge.  The March target had these little 25 point bullseyes in the corners, and I didn't even try for them with my iron-sighted pistols.  The Mk III has a good red dot sight, though and I made a couple attempts.  The sight is dialed in for 25 yards, and the target was set up at 25 feet, so an allowance for elevation had to be figured in.  Using the taco grip on the gun, I placed the bottom of the crosshair in the circle, and was a bit high.  Only one bullet touched the circle, for 25 points.

For the second attempt I put the bullseye between the cross and the bottom of the crosshair, and made three touches, but boy does that require some concentration!  For my third attempt, I went for the easy points.

The ten-ring is not too difficult when you are using a good red-dot sight; that allowed me to relax a bit too much, and I pulled off one shot to barely make a 9.

These monthly contests are good practice for all of us, and they will remind you how each of your pistols shoots, so be sure to join in the fun.  Mr. Completely will not be posting the results of March until some time next week, so feel free to shoot the March target and send your scans in to him.  The April contest is Right Here, so you can shoot them both in one range trip