Monday, August 23

Driving In Utah County

I don't know what it is about driving in Utah County, but I have a real hard time with it. Maybe it's the overly-engineered traffic patterns in parking lots. Or maybe the over-abundance of traffic circles. Design a friggin' traffic light that works. Something. Anything.

So I see on the news this morning that a rare traffic design is about to make its debut in, of all places, American Fork. God help us:

We already have a continuous-flow intersection (CFI) in Utah at 35th South and Bangerter. That was a pain getting used to, but damned if the thing actually works. There are a couple more in progress.

Then of course we have SPUI's galore - Single-Point Urban Interchanges.

Now in American Fork is the Diverging Diamond Interchange, similar to the one shown above. Great - it makes a driver go on the left-hand-side of the road.

Hell, Utah County drivers can't drive on the right side correctly.

Friday, August 20

Ear Worms


No, we're not talking about something akin to that thing that oozed out of Chekov's ear during that one Star trek movie. THAT was full of ewwww.

No, ear worms in this context are those songs that stick in your head - a good friend had the theme song for The Beverly Hillbillies stuck in his craw yesterday.

PsyBlog has an interesting post about ear worms here.

Hey, at least it wasn't Green Acres.

Thursday, August 19

Mandy and Felix

Mandy & Felix turned three years old this month. These two have been up for adoption since they were kittens. Please help spread the word, let's get these two a home!

'Mandy & Felix were so happy when they were rescued in the fall of 2007. Although a bit nervous about their new surroundings after living as ferals, they quickly showed their appreciation for a warm & comfortable home with plenty of food. They absolutely love each other and are seen snuggling, grooming and just enjoying one another's attention, they would never want to be separated. However, Mandy & Felix can not understand why nobody has come to offer them a forever home after years of waiting, showing at adoption events, and wondering when their turn will come. Their sensitive souls are hoping for that one person who will overlook the fact a cage is scary and loud noises will startle them. If that one special person will take them home, they will show their grattitude by snuggling next to them while they watch television and gaze at them appreciatively while being petted. Mandy & Felix would be happy to share a home with other cats, they simply want a loving home where they will be safe and cared for.'

Adoption fee is $80 for both cats. They are spayed/neutered, microchipped and vaccinated. For more information go to or email

Tuesday, August 17

ADHD Becoming More Prevalent In Classrooms?

Oh, I've heard this one before - "Leave him alone, he's just being a kid". If only that could be true.

In today's USA Today is an article regarding the prevalence of kids to be misdiagnosed with ADHD, when in reality, those children are just the youngest in their kindergarten class.

As if that were the only reason.

Here's a fact that not many of you may know:

At least half of those children who are diagnosed with ADHD - boys, specifically - are later found to have a condition known as Klinefelter Syndrome, a condition also known as 47,XXY. While much has been said about the sexual implications - an extra X chromosome - it's what Klinefelter Syndrome (KS) does to the brain. The symptoms are EXACTLY the same as those found in ADHD.

While the mechanics of a boy having KS are known - it happens during meiosis, or at the first cell division at conception - the event is totally random. But while random, it's more likely to happen with mothers of advanced age, after 35 years. And considering many women now having children have waited to start a family, for whatever reason, the chances are now even greater for multitudes of boys to have not ADHD, but Klinefelter Syndrome.

More can be found here (PDF).

This post isn't bs.

Saturday, August 14

Amazing Grace - Only The Black Notes

My cousin sent me the link to the following Youtube video. When first I saw "Amazing Grace - Only The Black Notes", I had this vision of a song within a song - that Amazing Grace would somehow sound different, played with only the black notes - on a piano.

Although that wasn't the case, you WILL be amazed at this:

Friday, August 13

When Time Didn't Continue If Not For A Mainspring

Well, this has had me stymied.

Of late, I've been noticing that either folks really don't read instruction manuals any more, or they don't understand the intricacies of fine craftsmanship. More likely the latter.

OK, so maybe that's a bit too harsh.


Dear readers, I don't know who you are. For the most part, anyway. Sure, I know who reads my blog on a regular basis. But there are those who find my blog via other means, namely search engines. Those I know, since Clicky tells me so. A couple of weeks ago, an interesting search came from somewhere in Texas - specifically, the search was "changing battery on Stauer 1930s Dashtronic".


I'd mentioned this to Mike "from work"; he said maybe whomever this was had gotten it as a gift sans original packaging, or even maybe from a pawn shop. And did not know the watch had to be wound.

I'd kept that incident in the back of my mind, but decided not to comment on it since it likely would be a one-time deal.

That is, until very early yesterday morning.

Someone from Modesto, California did a search for "dashtronic stops running".


From the instruction manual at Stauer's website is this:

"Before the watch is worn for the first time, wind the crown, by hand, 15 to 20 cycles by rolling the crown clockwise (away from you) while in the “0” (zero) position."

Beyond that, interestingly enough, the watch is self-winding. I say "interestingly enough" due to that information not being expressly mentioned anywhere other than as "automatic" in Stauer's literature. My Dad had a self-winding Waltham watch - which I still have to this day - that would always be wound, as he (and I) were always driving for work. I imagine someone with a desk job would find the watch would "run down" if not for some occasional wrist movements.

For me, my Dashtronic needs to be wound first thing Monday morning, but due to all the motions during the week, I don't again need to "jump start" it until the next Monday.

It's a ritual I don't mind in the least.

So, dear readers, the Dashtronic needs to be wound. It doesn't have a battery. And it being automatic, you need to move your wrist.

...from time to time.

Tuesday, August 10

Mia and Frisbee

Ever since we brought Mia home from CAWS, we knew immediately we had a winner on our hands. Having excellent house manners, coming when called, sitting on command, you know, all the basics, we were happy.

But then, finding out that she could also not only catch a Frisbee but also return it, well, we knew we couldn't pass her up. We officially adopted Mia as well.

Besides, she gives Bowser something to chew on.


Sunday, August 8

Why Can't Mormons Send Flowers?

Found on Facebook:

Friday, August 6

Cats vs. Treadmill

You KNOW you need a smile this morning. Enjoy:

Tuesday, August 3

Architecture... On Acid

OK, I'm not sure what the architect was going for in this house's design:

...maybe he was going for "Shock and Awe".

Shock as in "I hope the neighbors like it".

Or "Aw sh!t, it looked better on paper".

Near Fort Bragg off Highway 1.

Sunday, August 1

5 Minute Red Light

Friday night, class was out an hour early, so Marilee and I took advantage of the extra time to go out and 1) get photos of the Golden Gate Bridge from what I knew would be a great vantage point, and 2) get dinner from a typical San Francisco eatery.

The photos were easy - if you haven't seen those yet, they were in my Saturday post. But the dinner? That was an adventure in its own right.

After stopping for the Golden Gate photo-op, Marilee asked if there was a Popeyes Chicken nearby. There was, but due to the nature of the area - finding parking on a Friday night would have added to the problem, we decided instead to find something else with a bit of Bay flair.

I knew Sausalito was nearby, so it was north that we headed.

I'd been to Sausalito on my last trip, but only as a turnaround to go back over the bridge - and pay the southbound-only bridge toll of $7. Jill did well to direct us to a likely-sounding restaurant; alas, the place was no longer there. With that in mind, we decided then to just drive around a bit and hope for the best. As it was indeed a Friday night and all available parking spaces were full, we decided to try our chances further north.

We figured heading back to US-101 was the way to go - that was unfortunately not the case. Sign posts in California are for Californians who traverse those highways and byways on a regular basis, not for those who are used to a pair of mountain ranges on either side of the valley and streets laid out like bombing coordinates.

Upon realizing we were about to head back south over the bridge, I made what approximated an illegal U-turn and headed up a mountain road I'd traveled last time, but kept going. And going. And since the fog had started to settle, it was going to be a crap-shoot whether we ever were going to see the light of day, let alone Dublin or even Utah again.

Admittedly, it was some drive. Probably a drive that non-locals don't get to do, unless they, too, made an illegal U-turn sometime further back. But at one point, a U-turn wasn't an option, once we saw the following sign:

(Yes, it really does say that.)

An additional caveat would have been nice, something like "one-lane tunnel ahead". After going through the aforementioned tunnel, I told Marilee I had to know about this route upon our return to Utah - this post is the result of that search.

More at Caliber.

Oh, and dinner was at McDonalds.
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