A Quick Apology

Posting has been a little odd recently, and will continue so for the rest of this week. A novel has me by the throat and I’m trying to get it written while organizing some things at Day Job. My time-on-station at Day Job has also increased by 25%, so I’m getting reoriented to the new scheduled.


That Was Interesting…

An alarm went off, loudly. And I didn’t get excited. It took me a few hours to sort out why.

I should start by saying that this was an alarm that demands a prompt response of some kind, not a “Oh gads, it can’t be 0600 already” or “Yes, yes, I’ll check the dryer” sort of alarm. Continue reading

What the Author is Reading – November ’19

Short version: my usual strange selection of Day Job and writing books.

Agricola, George. De Re Metallica. (Herbert Hoover, trans.)   ( Martino Books, 2014, 1950, 1912) The must-read book about late Medieval, early Renaissance mining in Central Europe, with excellent historical and linguistic foot-notes. This edition keeps the notes and all the drawings, and I recommend it over the free versions without illustrations. You do need some background in math and basic civil engineering and woodworking, though. Metallurgy or basic knowledge of mining is also helpful but not necessary. Continue reading


Good Morning, Instapundit Readers! Have a spooky and well-watered Halloween.

Drink more water. I know this. I forgot this. I am now nursing a cracked thumb.

On average I need at least 100 ounces of water and other non-sweet, non-milk liquids a day. I live in a dry climate, and I happen to be “wetter” than a lot of people. I am not diabetic or pre-diabetic. I just need a lot of water to be happy.

Last week I ran low. Continue reading

If Flood Gage Under Water…

or Why Amarillo’ Police Department has a Dive Team.

By all common sense, Amarillo should need a police high-water rescue team about as much as does, oh, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. However, almost from the beginnings of highways and paved roads, the city had an underpass problem. We have a number of rather steep, deep underpasses because the railroad tracks came first, and then the roads were dug out from under them when traffic became too heavy. And these underpasses catch water. Continue reading

Think, Thought, Thwim?

Due to having a graduate degree that is perhaps best described as “eclectic,” I took a number of classes outside the standard history curriculum. Now, I was not the only one—one student commuted to the state veterinary school to take a course on “Equines and Man” that was a history of horses, mules, and donkeys, and we had people in the business and hard sciences courses. However, I was the only one who ended up learning surveying and how to measure stream flow. Continue reading