Sunday, July 31, 2022

"It's only a model!"

We've got a couple of real MG TD's you can occasionally spot flitting around the neighborhood on nice sunny days.

This isn't one of them.

The dead giveaway, other than the contours of the boot being slightly off, lurks underneath the rear bumper...

The lateral muffler and dual exhausts are dead giveaways of the Beetle chassis lurking under the roadster bodywork.

Other cars of the type don't require as much sleuthing.

For instance, if you see a vintage Bugatti Grand Prix car tootling around in traffic... don't really need to take the time to closely examine the front suspension or exhaust. It's a lot safer to bet on a kit car than someone taking their million-dollar baby to the grocery store.

Besides, the whimsical front license plate lets us all in on the game.

Time Machine

I've remarked before what a fan I am of MeTV, and it turns out that Tom Nichols is, too. He wrote a pretty decent essay about why he likes it over at The Atlantic.
"I sort of miss the clean, direct dialogue of the time before postmodern irony. Today, every line is a jaded observation or a tired smirk. I am reminded of a great moment in a 1996 episode of The Simpsons, in which two kids at a music festival are waiting for Homer to come on stage. “Oh, he’s cool,” one says in a deadpan. “Dude, are you being sarcastic?” the other asks. The first one hangs his head and says: “I don’t even know anymore.”

MeTV is television before all that. I love shows like The Boys and Stranger Things, but sometimes, it’s nice to visit a time when the characters just speak in completely ordinary sentences. “Peggy, get Lieutenant Tobias on the phone. Tell Adam I’m on my way.” “Be careful, Joe.” That’s all you need to know. It gives your brain a rest from peeling back layers of meaning. Joe’s going to meet Adam, and they’re going to do something dangerous, and Peggy is worried. That’s it."
It's worth a read and you should.


Friday, July 29, 2022

Automotif CCCXXIX...

Here's an attractive mid-'80s Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce.

The North American smog motor version of the 2.0L Alfa Twin-Cam motor put out 115 SAE net horsepower, so the Spider was no bolt of lighting. It'd do zero-to-sixty in ten seconds or a bit less. It also had typical Alfa reliability issues... 

But it was fun to drive when it was running right, and when it wasn't, you had something gorgeous to look at while waiting for the tow truck to arrive.

Photographed with the Canon EOS 1D Mark III & EF 24-105mm f/4L IS.

Triggered by memories.

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Not Great, But Not Terrible

I don't get the people who run around rating books or movies with all five star or one star reviews. 

I mean, to me, a five star review is for award-winning stuff: "This movie deserved its Best Picture Oscar!" or "This book is a future classic of its genre and will be on recommended reading lists in decades to come."

Conversely, a one star book better have hit the wall on the far side of the room at least once before I finished it...assuming I gritted it out 'til the end in the first place, and a one star movie should be too wretched even for MST3K to roast; utterly devoid of redeeming qualities.

Heck, in my personal rating system it's an unusually good author who can maintain four star quality across any kind of lengthy output. Staying in my genre-fiction bailiwick, even Pratchett or Bujold occasionally phoned in a three star contractual obligations novel. 

Three stars is where the bulk of entertainment lives anyway; the movie you watch or the book you read only once, feel you've gotten your money's worth, but don't really feel any need to revisit in the future. Two stars is the bad stuff that you steer people away from.


I mean, the Duffer Brothers did edit past episodes in order to fix a continuity error, as mentioned in the article. But the original Reddit feces-fest about a deleted scene? That was just the internet being the internet.


Wednesday, July 27, 2022

"We can fix it in post..."

Like, way, wayyyy in post.

Specifically, the Duffer Brothers have been doing a bit of retrospective editing in earlier seasons of Stranger Things, and some on the internet are seething.

Apparently the only way to see an unedited Season 1 in its original form now is on DVD or Blu-Ray.



Some riders are like "Are you taking my picture?"

Others get totally into it.

Canon EOS 1D MkIII & EF 24-105mm f/4L IS.

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

QotD: You're Only Human Edition

This Shay Khatiri quote is money.

*taps toe impatiently*

We're about a month out from the latest episode of the Frontlines series*, Centers of Gravity, automagically showing up on my kindlemaschinen. Tapping my toe faster doesn't seem to be causing it to show up any sooner.

*My suggestion for a name for the series, "Plural Noun of an Abstract Noun", went over like a lead balloon.

Monday, July 25, 2022

Automotif CCCXXVIII...

I'd seen this classic roadster zipping around the neighborhood last October and got some photos of it tooling past on 54th, but when I saw it pull into the Fresh Market parking lot yesterday while I was eating lunch, I scooped up the Nikon D800 and jogged across the street.

You can see how tiny this thing is relative to the parking space. It's about the same length and height as an original Miata, but almost an entire foot narrower.

It's a dictionary-definition real roadster, too. My BMW Z3 may claim to be a roadster (it actually says as much on the scuff plates in the door sills) but it has a built-in folding top, which makes it a convertible by definition.

The TR3, on the other hand, is a true roadster: an open car with only rudimentary weather protection. Namely, it has a sort of pup-tent apparatus of bows and sheeting that can be erected and snapped down in order to, notionally at least, divide the world into the part where it's raining and the part where it's raining a little less...provided you don't drive too fast and have the whole thing blow off the car. 

The driver of this one made it out of Fresh Market and motored off just in time to not wind up wishing he hadn't left the top at home. Well, it might be stowed in the boot, I suppose.

Ah, the towel in the passenger seat! A standard roadster accessory, usually slightly redolent of mildew. It serves a variety of uses, from drying off the driver's seat after an unexpected sprinkling, to emergency backup windshield defogger, to privacy screen for stuff you leave in the passenger footwell while running into the store.

Note the driver snapping cell phone photos to the right!

These pictures, by the way, are all extremely embiggenateable, should you wish, since they were snapped with a 36MP DSLR...


Sunday, July 24, 2022

"Meaningless Increments of Precision"

Don't blame the ad copy writer; they have to put something in there...
[C]arrying a firearm for defense involves selecting a firearm and ammo, which generally involves a gunmaker and ammunition manufacturer having to sell you product. Selling you their product means having to convince you it’s better than the other guy’s, and that usually means numbers.

For handguns intended for concealed carry, this often involves measurements of weight or thickness. Everyone knows that a lighter gun is easier to carry, after all, and a thinner gun will “print” less through a cover garment. But, it’s definitely easy to get lost in the sauce of all the associated marketing hype.

“The Blastomatic 2000 is the slimmest 9 mm double-stack subcompact on the market!” or “The GatMaster Chihuahua is the lightest pocket magnum revolver you can buy!” These are things that make great ad copy—and good filler for a lazy reviewer in a hurry—but how much difference, really, do a couple tenths of an ounce make in a pistol’s concealability? Would you notice the difference .36 ounce makes on your belt or in your coat pocket over the course of a day? But, it’s a number that’s easy to quote and so people will use it to justify a choice.
Picking a carry load because the box flap says that Brand X is 30fps faster than Brand Y is kinda missing the point...

Automotif CCCXXVII...

Here's a 1977 Coupe DeVille in Sable Black.

'77 was the first year of the downsized DeVille, being ten inches shorter and a thousand pounds lighter than the gargantuan '76 models. Careful juggling of dimensions and raising the roofline meant that the smaller car actually had more head- and legroom and a larger trunk than its predecessor. You could still stuff three or four Hoffas back there if you packed right.

The engine was downsized, too, from the old 500cid V8 to a 425-cube motor that put out 180bhp, or 195 with optional fuel injection. The 500 had been so choked by reduced compression and restrictive exhausts that horsepower remained pretty much the same, anyway.

A hot mess.

"Not satisfied with forcing law abiding citizens to play “Am I A Felon yet?” hopscotch while walking down the street, the proposed legislation would also make any private business automatically off-limits for a concealed carrier, without a sign explicitly allowing such. Given the litigious state of the country, and the inherent potential risk of liability, one can easily conclude that this would be a blanket ban in all but name."
The hasty, spiteful legislative clapback rushed to Governor Hochul's desk in response to the Supremes dunking on New York in the Bruen decision is garbage. Fortunately big chunks of it are unlikely to hold up to any legal scrutiny. I guess the state of New York just likes blowing citizens' tax dollars on unnecessary legal fees.


Bring the (statistical) Noise!

When reading poll data, remember that the Lizardman's Constant is 4%.


Saturday, July 23, 2022

Hey, look!

RECOILweb has my most recent piece from Concealment magazine up in its entirety...

Overheard in Front of the TV...

During Saturday morning cartoon time, great attention is paid here at Roseholme Cottage to the copyright date in the opening credits, as something of an augur or portent for the quality of the cartoon to follow. As an example, this morning...

RX: "'67..."

Me: "A time filled with hippies. And communism."

Friday, July 22, 2022

Automotif CCCXXVI...

This all-electric Volvo C40 has 402hp, and sprints to 60 in 4.2 seconds on its way to a 12.9 second quarter.

The only car I've ever owned that would come close to those numbers needed ether squirted down the carb to start on any morning cold enough to need a jacket and idled like a paint mixer. This thing, on the other hand, is invisible in the Fresh Market parking lot; just another grocery getter.


Thursday, July 21, 2022

Automotif CCCXXV...

Here's a 2010-2012 Saab 9-5.

The second generation 9-5 was pretty much the end of the road for Saab Automobile. Built on the same long wheelbase variant of the GM Epsilon II platform as rental fleet stalwarts like the Chevy Malibu and Buick LaCrosse, its Swede-ness is only badge-deep.

Hard to believe Saab's been gone a whole decade now.



The weatherman was promising some thunderstorms yesterday around evening rush hour time. I was convinced enough to tote my umbrella along on my afternoon perambulations, thereby ensuring that no rain would materialize, unfortunately.

It was blistering hot, as predicted, and plenty humid, but none of that humidity deigned to fall on the garden, meaning my morning started with the ceremonial lugging of the watering can again. (It's a one gallon can, and I fill separate gallon jug at the same time, so I can halve the number of trips in and out the door.)

It's been a hot, dry summer, but next week is supposed to be pretty rainy. Only a few more days of water lugging and then maybe Mother Nature will pick up the slack for a bit.


Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Monday, July 18, 2022

That’s not how any of this works.

Actually, neither the bad guy nor the citizen who cut his rampage short brought a gun into the mall illegally. 

Carrying a gun into the mall is not a violation of any Indiana law nor any local ordinance in Indiana, no matter how many “NO GUNS“ signs they post.

I would suggest that Zionsville, IN resident Ms. Watts avail herself of one of Guy Relford's Indiana Firearms Law classes.

Those gullies needed washin'.

Good Guy With A Gun

So a dude walks right past the "NO GUNS ALLOWED" signs and into the food court of a mall in a suburb on the south side of Indy with a rifle and a bunch of loaded magazines and opens fire.

Instead of a horrific double digit body count, there were only four fatalities, counting the asshole, because some good citizen also ignored the signs (which have no legal weight in Indiana, anyway) and capped his ass before he could empty his magazine.

Unbelievably, one of the local newscasters actually said that they'd contacted law enforcement to see if they'd arrest anyone for violating the "NO GUNS ALLOWED" policy of the company that owns the mall.

Honey, even if such a thing were legally possible, no prosecutor in their right mind would do such a thing, unless they were just dying to lose their next election.

Oh, and nice shootin', Tex.


Sunday, July 17, 2022

Automotif CCCXXIII...

Here's an extremely rara avis, at least here in the U.S.A.: An '89-'91 Nissan Pao.

Only about 31,000 were made, and sold exclusively on the Japanese domestic market, the entire production run sold out within three months of the time they started taking orders.

It's got a carbureted 1.0L inline four, putting out 51bhp to the front wheels through either a 3-speed auto or 5-speed manual.

Photographed with a Canon EOS 1D Mark III & EF 24-105mm f/4L IS.


Saturday, July 16, 2022

I'm stuck in a kookocracy.

There are people who think the James Webb Space Telescope is a secret Illuminati orbital mind control laser or some crap like that because of course there are.
If it makes a splash in the headlines, you can bet someone will be there to say that it’s actually a Freemason plot or that it's a false flag or aliens or whatever else.
The worst thing about social media is that it allowed idiots and assholes to heterodyne in ways not previously possible. 

Instead of these wacky loners having to physically find each other to exchange mimeographed newsletters of kookery, face-to-face and hand-to-sweaty-hand, they can gather in throngs in virtual auditoriums and try and outdo each other by concocting dumber and more outlandish crap and expounding it more sincerely than the kooks around them.


QotD: Audience Participation Edition...

"Great photographs don't happen simply because you point a box somewhere." -Thom Hogan


The Need for Speed...

One thing I noticed when I was shooting the D1X last month was how quickly the buffer filled up. I popped off several shots at that Caddy as it rolled by and the camera made me stop and let it catch up at something like seven or eight.

This confused me as all the media about the camera, even when it was new, claimed the D1X could shoot three frames per second for 21 consecutive shots before the buffer filled. 

The sports-oriented D1H had less resolution but could blaze away at 5 FPS for forty shots before it bogged down. That's a full eight seconds with the shutter button mashed; enough time to cover an NFL play from the snap.

The disconnect, as I soon figured out, was that I was shooting in RAW, which was not as often done in the earliest days of digital. That buffer that held twenty-some JPEGs only holds six or seven .NEF files (Nikon's proprietary RAW format.) You can count "two Mississippi" and then you're done until the buffer's flushed out, or has room for another image.

From a retrospective on the D1X's predecessor, the original D1:
The super fast speed was partially hindered by the settings. While JPEG processing was really fast and almost instantenious, switching to RAW cause the camera to crawl. Storage time went sky high, 45 secs per photo not uncommon. People complaining today about slow CF/SD cards shoud respect that a microdrive could only deliver 0.5 MB/sec and the D1 electronics limited the fastest CF Cards (12x Lexar) to data rates well below 1 MB/sec.
I was using a 133x Transcend 2GB card, probably capable of receiving data a lot faster than the old D1X could send it, so at least the buffer probably cleared faster.

(Cross-posted at Digital Fossils.)

Friday, July 15, 2022

Automotif CCCXXII...

Continuing the yellow convertible theme from the other day, here's a nice clean Volkswagen Thing.

The similarity to the Kübelwagen of the World War II Wehrmacht is no coincidence, as the Type 181, sold in West Germany as the Kurierwagen, had been developed as a runabout for the Bundeswehr. Like the Kübelwagen, it relied heavily on Beetle mechanicals. Also like its forebear, and unlike the contemporaneous Willys Jeeps, it was rear wheel drive only, counting on light weight, ground clearance, and the engine being mounted in the rear to make up for some of the difference in offroadability.


How far is it?

If you play the web game "Globle", the "Draw A Circle On A Map" tool is turbo useful...

Also, I guess, if you're a military history nerd and wanted to see what the action radius of a Q-39 Sky Dominator squadron operating out of an airfield on Vanuatu would have been.

Thursday, July 14, 2022

Automotif CCCXXI...

The neighborhood TR6 was out and about again the other day. Check out those smiling faces! These folks are clearly living their best lives.

Photographed with the EOS 1D Mark III & EF 28-70mm f/2.8L

Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Wholly Hole-y.

The Mechanix gloves I've used for years to haul the trash cans to and from the curb as well as for general yard work are finally too hole-y to countenance any longer.

Fortunately Amazon's got a Prime Day deal on all kinds of Mechanix gloves (even the tacticool ones) running for the rest of the day for as much as half off. Bought two pairs this time, just in case.

Automotif CCCXX...

1965 Ford Galaxie 500 ragtop in Vintage Burgundy with the 250bhp 4-bbl 352cid FE big block. The '65 and '66 were clean-looking cars and Ford sold a mess of them.


Tuesday, July 12, 2022

Speaking of knives...

I've mentioned before about how blunt trainers for the Spyderco "waved" Endura and Delica are discontinued, uncommon, and expensive when you can find them. They're so uncommon and expensive that literally the first piece I ever wrote for Shooting Illustrated Online was on how to make an improvised "wave" for a regular Spyderco trainer.

Well, good news everyone!

Kershaw is making an Emerson waved trainer and they're seventeen bucks on sale at BezosMart right now.

It's obviously not the same as a waved Delica, but it's roughly comparable in size and shape and, most importantly, deploys identically from a pocket or waistband.


Just Walk Away

In a video clip shared by Chris Fry of MDTS which I'm only going to link rather than embed for obvious reasons, there's a good lesson in how quickly an altercation can turn deadly.

You'll notice that one group of dudes is trying to walk away, while the other is just not willing to let it go. Even after a dude draws a knife, you've got that one big guy striding right at him with his chest thrown out in the posture of someone who's used to things going their way because of size and strength.


One quick flick of the knife guy's hand and next thing you know, homie is bleeding out on the pavement. The thing that gets me is that he had to walk over to the guy in order to get hisself killed.

Ugly and completely avoidable. In the words of the great Warrior Poet, Humungus...

Such a deal!

Amazon's got a Prime Day deal running on the Canon EOS M6 Mark II mirrorless camera, bundled with the kit zoom and detachable electronic viewfinder (normally sold separately for, like, two-fitty), for under nine bills for the whole kit.


Poking Holes

So Caleb shot some Federal 85gr .32 H&R Magnum jacketed hollow points into gel. In bare gel he got a little bit of expansion, but through cloth he got bupkis, with the bullet not expanding at all. It clogged up, yawed through a hundred and eighty degrees, and continued on bass-ackwards until it came to a rest.

I could have told him it would do that. In fact, I did.

This is why I carry Federal 95gr LSWC in my S&W 432PD. There's nothing magic about expansion. As far as I'm concerned, its most important function in CCW pistol ammo is moderating excessive penetration in service calibers. I've seen unexpanded Winchester Ranger-T 127gr +P+ penetrate clean through two sixteen inch blocks of clear gel.

Monday, July 11, 2022

Range time...

Gonna do some chrono testing on a few different JHP loads from the High Power today. Winchester Silvertips, Hornady Critical Defense, and Underwood JHP loads are on the docket. Something tells me the Underwood is spicier than the box flap claims it is...



Despite getting a good inch of rain between Thursday night and Saturday morning, we're still way short for the season. They're saying we might get a small bit of rain tonight as a front passes through and then there's nothing else in the forecast for at least a week.

The lawn's gone dormant and even the catnip that's now growing rogue in the flowerbeds along the front of the house is looking a bit down at the heels. Only the mint seems unfazed.

Lugging gallons of water to the flowers and veggies is going to be a twice daily chore for a bit.


Sunday, July 10, 2022


You know how there are those occasional missing person stories with a gruesome ending, where they find the person weeks later behind some heavy piece of furniture where they'd fallen and suffocated? This is worse.

This reads like something that kicks off a Stephen King short story* from way back in his more tightly-edited, way-scarier days...
Duncan Alexander Burrell Gordon, of Greer, was reported missing in early May from the recycling plant where his father is a supervisor.

Spartanburg County Coroner Rusty Clevenger said Gordon apparently fell into the plastic shredder where he was working May 5, the last time he was seen, news agencies reported.

*I'm referring, of course, to the creepy-ass story "The Mangler", which was originally published in Cavalier magazine and can be found in the collection Night Shift. Apparently it got a godawful movie adaptation which, despite being an absolute box office flop and panned by critics, spawned a pair of straight-to-video sequels.

Automotif CCCXIX...

A fifth-gen Austria-built Supra above and, below, a 1985 Celica GT-S droptop.

The latter is the last model year for the RWD Celica, featuring a 116bhp 2.4L four-banger.

The convertible top conversion was actually done by ASC in California on Celica bodies that had been specially reinforced on the production line in Japan, and was a $6500 price bump over the $11k sticker on the hardtop GT-S.

This was a bunch of dough for the time; you could check every option box you wanted on a Mustang GT or Camaro IROC-Z and have a hard time hitting the $17k mark, and you'd get V8 power to boot.

Less than 4,500 GT-S convertibles were made, 200 units in MY '84 and the rest in '85.

Both those Toyotas were photographed with the Canon EOS 1D Mark III and EF 28-70mm f/2.8L lens. The 1.3x crop factor of the APS-H sensor in the old pro Canon sports body means the midrange L zoom has a field of view equivalent to a 36-91mm lens on a full frame camera. It's a little short for ideal car-spotting duties still, since shooting across the full four lanes of College Avenue at the intersection requires a bunch of cropping, but not as bad as it would be on a full-frame body.

What's interesting to me is that, even though there are only ~4500 of these things in existence, there are at least two immaculate ones in the neighborhood.

Saturday, July 09, 2022


The High Power had now crossed the 1500 round mark, thanks to Lucky Gunner. Deets are over at the Patreon page.


It's true.

I mean, buying a full size CDP and replacing the nylon MSH with an S&A unit, gutting the lockwork in favor of some C&S drop-in bits, binning the FLGR, making sure the extractor is strac and replacing it if it's not, and putting in a Wilson Bulletproof slide stop has long been one of my "when I get around to it" projects. 

Why? I dunno, I like the way they look, for one, and I also keep thinking about alloy-framed 5" 1911s. I sometimes miss that Springfield Lightweight Loaded I got from Marko years ago and then went nuts with titanium bits to make it even lighter. (It's also the only 1911 where I replaced the metal MSH with a nylon one. Gotta shave them ounces!)

Of course, those are all things I'd do to pretty much any Kimber/SA/Colt-tier pistol off the rack anyway. I look at most sub-$2k 1911s as buying a frame/slide/barrel kit.



From the "They ain't dead yet?" department, apparently Journey has released a new album.

I think the only Journey album I ever bought was an 8-track that came with the car.


Friday, July 08, 2022

You Can't Uninvent The Wheel

Sure looks like a homemade muzzle-loading double barrel strapped to a board to me. The only difference between it and a medieval handgonne is the construction material and the fact that it's fired by electronic ignition, probably a battery shorting across some steel wool, rather than a burning fuse.

Everything you need to make it is at Lowe's or Home Depot.


Thursday, July 07, 2022

QotD: Someone's Having Fun Somewhere Edition

“For the New Puritans, a smug sense of self-satisfaction is the most delicious dish of all.” - Noah Rothman, Rise of the New Puritans: Fighting Back Against Progressives' War on Fun
Next up on my nonfiction reading pile.

Stop Drawing to Tippy Turtle

It's a hard habit to break, and I often catch myself reverting, just like it took a while to deprogram myself from the classic bent-elbow Weaver.

That first bit, about keeping your head stationary (or reasonably so) and bringing pistol to your eyeline, rather than ducking your head to go hunting for the sights, is huge. It especially makes all the difference in the world if you're running a dot.

Remember the lesson of Buddha Cat, which applies whether the dot is in an optical sight or on the front blade of your irons...

Wednesday, July 06, 2022

I was today years old when...

...I learned that Victorinox makes a Swiss Army knife version specifically for cheese enthusiasts, and it is dubbed the "Cheese Master".

I can't stop watching this.

"This became known as 'The Smith Family Fireworks Incident' and was talked about in neighborhood lore well into the 2040s..."

They keep lying for the cause.

Whatever you want to blame this on, the availability or ubiquity of firearms is not the controlling variable. This piece opens with a flawed premise and doesn't get any better from there.


Automotif CCCXVIII...

I'm pretty sure that I had never before seen a 1958 Edsel Citation rollin' on dubs before. This thing has some truly baroque styling.

Photographed with a Canon EOS 5D Mark II and an old EF 28-70mm f/2.8L USM. Though long superseded by newer 24-70/2.8 lenses with image stabilization, the old 28-70 puts up respectable DXOmark numbers and is capable of turning out crisp images even on the 50MP sensor of my 5DS, plus it's quite reasonably priced for "L" glass if you find one on the used market.


Tuesday, July 05, 2022

Air You Can Wear

I just finished watering the veggies out back and the flowers in the front yard. Four trips in and out, all told, hauling water.

The sun's not really up, between the haze and clouds in the eastern sky ant the tall trees in the neighborhood, but the air temp's already 78°F with a 70 degree dew point. It's cloyingly sticky, so that your eyeballs practically fog as you step outside.

We're supposedly heading for a high in the mid-nineties today and a dew point well into that "oppressive" range. Hopefully the air will wind up with more water in it than it can hold at some point during the day and dump some of it on the ground. We've had so little rain that I passed on my usual half-assed Independence Day fireworks last night because I didn't want to have to keep a fire extinguisher handy for the lawn.

Farmer Frank would not have been happy with the summer weather so far this year.


Monday, July 04, 2022

Happy Independence Day!

This is the day we commemorate George Washington swimming across the Delaware to bust Martin Luther King out of jail, where he'd been unjustly imprisoned for cracking the king of England's royal bell in Philadelphia. This is why it's now called the Liberty Bell.

Washington and King went on the lam, putting together a group of dissidents and malcontents, including Ben Franklin, Tom Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt, and Amelia Earhart. This crew began waging guerrilla warfare against the king, using the tactics developed by Francis Marion and Robin Hood.

In the end, after many cool shootouts and various heists and capers on royal outposts, the king was chased back to England and Washington's crew celebrated with Budweiser, grilled hamburgers, and fireworks.

The End.

Saturday, July 02, 2022

Culture Club

We got all cultured up this morning when the Tom & Jerry hour played this 1939 MGM classic, The Blue Danube.

Torture Porn

No, seriously. I'm using the phrase literally.

Apparently years before E.L. James published any of her weirdo softcore Twilight fanfic, Gina Haspel was getting her freak on in memos to CIA headquarters from the black site she was running in Thailand.
Sitting atop one of those pinnacles of pain in Thailand, where al-Nashiri was repeatedly thrown against a wall, waterboarded, forced naked into a coffin-like box and threatened with a gun and electric drill, was Gina Haspel, the ambitious base chief and future CIA director.

And boy, did she enjoy it, judging by her pulse-pounding cables back to headquarters from Thailand in 2002. In prose seemingly inspired by bodice-ripping romance novels, the onetime U.S. Army base librarian described how the psychologist James Mitchell (whose hiring by the CIA remains a bizarre subchapter of the torture years), “strode, catlike, into the well-lit confines of the cell at 0902 hrs…deftly removed the subject's black hood with a swipe, paused, and in a deep, measured voice said that subject—having 'calmed down' after his (staged) run-in with his hulking, heavily muscled guards the previous day—should reveal what subject had done to vex his guards to the point of rage."
"Strode, catlike"? "Hulking, heavily muscled"? Are you effin' kidding me? I haven't seen prose that purple since that time I wasted ninety-nine cents on some self-pubbed garbage thriller on Kindle, and this is actual official dot-gov correspondence.

I understand you have to inform headquarters about how your torture program is going, but is it too much to ask for you to keep both hands on the keyboard while doing it, Ilsa?